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The People Who Write Questionnaire: Abubakar Adam Ibrahim

Abubakar Adam Ibrahim is the author of The Whispering Trees and Season of Crimson Blossoms - peoplewhowrite

Abubakar Adam Ibrahim is the author of the short story collection The Whispering Trees and the forthcoming novel Season of Crimson Blossoms

If your life (so far) were a book, what would the title be?
Hmmm, maybe something windy like The Quiet, Dubious Life of Abu. Or The Elephant That Grew Wings and Flew to the Moon. Or Perhaps something mundane like Steady. I am sure who ever will have that task will have a headache just trying to decide.

What is the greatest story ever told?
The stories of the Spider Gizo and his wife Koki. They are always getting into one mischief or the other. We grew up listening to their stories and learned a lot from them.

Who is the greatest literary character ever created?
Isn’t the devil fascinating enough. Don Quixote is quite a character though.

Which living or dead writer would you most like to share a meal with?
Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Arthur Golden. Cyprian Ekwensi.

What is your favorite word right now?
Destinasia. I am looking for the right place to use it in my writing. It will come someday.

What word has always looked or sounded strange to you?
Concupiscence. Now there is a word with a punch.

How many words have you written today?
Maybe 2000 maybe more. I wrote several short pieces so can’t remember exactly how many words I put down.

Where have you had your most exhilarating writing experience?
Garuga, Uganda, where Lake Victoria kissed the shores and whispered to me like a lover.

What is the thing about writing that you most deplore?
Lamentations about gatekeepers.

What is the thing about writing that you most love?
Everything about writing is fun and cool. What I do love about writing is discovering an old manuscript I had forgotten I had written and being thrilled by it.

What stereotype about writers have you found to be true?
That writers have a peculiar oddity, some more pronounced than others.A certain X factor that makes them cope with being medium for the muse or the force or wherever those stories come from.

What’s the biggest misconception about writers/writing?
That all writers are, by default, ungovernable.

What’s the one thing no one would ever guess about you from reading your writing?
That I am a very happy person.

Abubakar Adam Ibrahim is a Nigerian writer and author of the short story collection, The Whispering Trees, (Parresia, Lagos, 2012) which was longlisted for the Etisalat Prize for literature, with the title short story shortlisted for the Caine Prize for African Writing in 2013. He is a winner of the BBC African Prize, among other awards, and is a Gabriel Garcia Marquez Fellow and a Civitella Ranieri Fellow. His novel, Season of Crimson Blossoms will be published in November in Nigeria by Parresia Publishers and in the UK by Cassava Republic in 2016.


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