Quick Chat With The Author… is a weekly OkadaBooks series that spotlights indigenous authors, amplifies their voices, and gives character and depth to the brains behind the amazing stories our readers have come to love on the OkadaBooks mobile app. Check back for new episodes Wednesdays at 12 noon.
For our first episode, we talk to Glory Abah. A creative writer, writing coach, and IT expert, Glory seems to be able to do it all. Let’s meet her.
Briefly tell us about yourself.
G: I am a certified book nerd, whose nose is always stuck in a book. I love writing and I freelance as an editor, a ghostwriter, a creative writing coach, and a Publishing Consultant. I think I got into editing because I’m always looking for ways to read more books. Haha! I ghostwrite because it hurts to see a beautiful story written badly, whether fiction or creative non-fiction.
Apart from writing, is there anything else you do for a living?
G: Yes. I work in the Administrative and Business department of the IT industry. While I am not a programmer, I seem to have a knack for managing programmers and projects, as well as IT businesses.
Interesting. How did you get into the IT industry, and how has it been juggling it with writing?
G: I got a job in the IT industry when I was still a young school leaver and somehow, I’ve stayed in that lane for some years now. I work during the day and write in the evenings. Thankfully, the IT space is very flexible and I also find time to write when I’m done with my tasks. It’s not been difficult to juggle writing with my job and I believe that with planning, determination, and God’s grace, you can do anything.
Yeah, it doesn’t sound easy at all.
How would you weigh your fulfillment as an IT personnel, and how does it compare to the joys of writing?
G: Writing remains my first chosen career, and I will choose it any other day.
Is there any other passion you think you would be pursuing if writing wasn’t in the mix?
G: If I wasn’t actively pursuing writing, I would be pursuing a career as a Worship Leader or Music Producer. I love music and I know I would have spent more time developing that part of myself if I didn’t already have a passion for writing.
Oh, my. Music production is beautiful, but I have to admit I didn’t see that coming.
What’s a particular lesson writing has taught you that has helped shape other parts of your life?
G: Writing has taught me a lot about fulfilling your purpose on earth, as well as talent and expansion. Due to my love of writing, I have learned and become an expert in so many things like editing, ghostwriting, book covers, interior formatting, etc. There is no aspect of writing or publishing that I am not good at. Writing has taught me that with passion and dedication, and God on your side, you can be anything.
What’s the best book you’ve ever read? Tell me a little about it.
G: This is a very hard question because I do not have one best book. I have many best books and many favourite authors. But if I was asked to pick one at gunpoint, it would be Dream a Little Dream by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. She is my all-time favourite author and I hope I will one day be able to write stories like she does.
If you could meet up with your younger self at any point in your past, when would that be, and what would you say to her?
G: Don’t be too hard on yourself. You will get there and make it. You’ll not fail, you will succeed. You can do anything you set your mind to if you just trust God. Enjoy the journey. The money will come.
Delight and the Husband Hunting book series are some of my favorite books you’ve written. What can you say inspires you to tell the kind of stories you do?
G: Interestingly, I wrote the Husband Hunting series because I was procrastinating while writing a ‘serious’ book. It was a means of escape for me, and I wrote exactly what I wanted to write and read. Voila! I wanted a story that would make me laugh, a story about real people, no big grammar or beautiful prose. I just wanted to tell a story as it is, as it would happen to any Nigerian girl living in today’s world. I didn’t worry about political correctness. Today, I read my own books and I enjoy them tremendously. That’s a win for me.
A big win it is. Kudos!
Who/what are the biggest influences on your writing style? Give them a shout-out.
G: Susan Elizabeth Phillips is one writer that inspires me, followed closely by Sophie Kinsella and Meg Cabot. When I read Sophie’s books, I laugh a lot and I enjoy the story as it goes. She makes me forget my problems. I also love Chimamnda Ngozi Adichie (CNA) and I fangirl over her hard. I think Jesus is the ultimate storyteller. Have you read His parables?
I certainly have. And I have a few favourites, too.
What are some of your interesting hobbies that may surprise your readers?
G: All my hobbies are as expected. I am always reading or watching a movie. Every other weekend, I am curled up on my bed with my phone or laptop.
Are you a TV or film person? What’s that one movie/TV show you really like and won’t mind rewatching, say, 10 times in a year?
G: I like stories that make me laugh while teaching me deep lessons about life. I usually watch and rewatch Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Friends regularly.
These are both good picks. You do know your stuff.
What are your thoughts on the impacts OkadaBooks has on the Nigerian literary space?
G: Okadabooks is a game-changer. When OkadaBooks came on the scene, it was to save the writers in Nigeria. OkadaBooks has made many writers emerge and made writing profitable. The fact that anyone at all can write, publish, and earn on your platform has uplifted the publishing industry in Nigeria and given writers more options. They say writers are poor? Okadabooks is telling us differently.
Awwwn! Thank you. 🙈
Check back for new episodes Wednesdays at 12 noon.