Updated: Mar 7
Guest writer for "The NZDream" blog
Who is your greatest inspiration?
This here is a question I have been asked, in almost everything I do. I have come to ask myself that too, and introspect, weighing out all my influences, to pick who influenced me most. Turns out, I have a lot of inspirations, especially in simple and genuine things. Also, my inspirations vary, though some are constantly present in all I do, depending on what it is that I will be doing.
Have you ever taken time to just sit and think of your life, the person you are, your experiences, and how they affected and may still affect who you are?
That’s what my mind is stuck on today.
I realized, along my trail of thought, that writing presents me with the platform, satisfaction, and peace I need to keep my sanity. It has been my life and friend since I was of tender age. It plays quite a huge and pivotal role in who I am today. So, in my introspection, it was my first stop to dig into.
Obviously, to me, personal experiences, my child, our life, and everything around us are the strongest inspiration I have. I write what I live, see, think and wish. But this is more about the people that inspired me.
This took me back to my childhood days to find where my love for writing emanated from. Memory reminded me that I always was much of a loner, who loved her time indoors, with books. I remembered owning the full Harry Porter series, Mills and boon, and a lot more teen series. I also distinctly recollect falling in love with Chinua Achebe, Buchi Emecheta, and Stephen King. Boy, was I intrigued by their writing! I still am and hold them in high esteem.
I remember the excitement I had, envisioning the worlds they created, and the nightmares I had, after reading Stephen King. The vividity of their works provoked nothing short of vehement recollections and emotions. Their books, each, carried me along with the story with my emotions in its hands, to twist and turn at will, with mere words. This was a world I wanted to dwell in and never leave. I still remember all the books by these legendary authors, to date, despite not reading them recently. Now that’s what I call literature! I only hope to be half as good as they are. That would make me a great author.
Besides novels, I loved Basic English and literature at school, courtesy of my dad and mum. Dad loves English and books, and mum was a teacher. So my fate was to perform well. I loved every technique, style, and anything new I learned to better my English. I wanted to be like Stephen King and the other aforementioned authors. Funny though, that I never saw myself writing for public consumption, and yet, here I am! I would say, then, that my greatest writing inspirations are Chinua Achebe and Stephen King.
The music takes a different route but is quite easy to identify. I have always loved Nina Simone, Tracy Chapman, and Whitney Houston. For their lyrics, the strength of their vocals, and for being themselves. All women are legendary, we can all agree, but to me, Nina stands out by far, and paved the way. Nina fought a system and a struggle through not only her music, but her very life. I cried watching a documentary about her. She was stronger than you and I. She lost all she had, big as she was, and still stood firm on who she wanted to be and was. Every time I listen to her songs, I get the motivation to be more resilient, even stronger and to shout even louder - at some point, I will be heard! Now that’s an icon worth all my respect. Lyrically, she is my inspiration. Vocally, it’s all three aforementioned women and Adelle.
I guess my writing, be it music or authoring, is rooted in sentiments, emotions, and images provoked by the writing style and the content.
Who are your inspirations and why?