Pushing ahead into the new year we are excited to speak with Chinedu Achebe, an indie author based in America. His debut novel Blunted on Reality explored the life and loves of Obi Ifeanyi amidst a changing US political landscape.
His new book, The Miseducation of Obi Ifeanyi takes us further into the dynamics of Obi’s life and we learn and grow along with him. Please sit back and enjoy our third feature on Konversations with Karibee!
Karibee Books: You’ve probably been asked multiple times if you’re related to the legendary Chinua Achebe. A bit of research confirmed that you aren’t, but could you please tell us a bit about yourself. Who is Chinedu Achebe?
Achebe: I am a Nigerian American. I was born in Richmond, Virginia and currently live in Houston, Texas. I am a huge fan of sports, politics, and hip hop music. I work as an accountant full time as well.
Karibee Books: Well done on publishing the sequel to your debut book “Blunted on Reality”. What inspired you to write about the main character, Obi Ifeanyi, and is he a reflection of you in some way?
Achebe: I wanted to tell a story from the perspective of a Nigerian American living life in the United States during the first year of the Obama presidency. Some of the story is based off some experiences in my life.
Karibee Books: With the current tumultuous political landscape in the United States, do you intend to write a third book that looks into the election of Donald Trump?
Achebe: That is a good question. I am contemplating that idea as we speak actually.
Karibee Books: In what ways would you say Obi Ifeanyi has developed between the first and second books?
Achebe: I think that Obi being a husband and father has changed him. He has to see the world through various lenses aside from the singular lens that he did when he was a single guy.
Karibee Books: What is your writing process like, and what research goes into a book of this nature?
Achebe: My writing process is very free flowing. I usually listen to music to get my mind into a particular mood. I write down some key points that I want to touch on paper, but for the most part I type everything into my laptop from the top of my head.
Karibee Books: Is there any particular author or book that influenced you in any way either growing up or as an adult?
Achebe: I was influenced by Chinua Achebe’s second book, No Longer At Ease and the movies of Spike Lee.
Karibee Books: What was an early experience where you learned that language had power?
Achebe: Probably from listening to hip hop music and the impact that the lyrics and message had on people.
Karibee Books: What are common traps for aspiring writers?
Achebe: I think a lot of aspiring writers get caught up in thinking that after they publish their book that the work is done. The thing that I have learned the most is that marketing your book is very hard, especially if you are an indie author like myself who has to go out and try and pitch bloggers to see if they would be interested in your story. The other trap is understanding that your book won’t get the acclaim that you think it should get and be ok with that.
Karibee Books: When did you first start writing and when did you finish your first book?
Achebe: I wrote my first blog posts in 2009. I finished writing Blunted on Reality in late 2011 and published it in 2012.
Karibee Books: Finally, what do you think makes a good story?
Achebe: I think that a good story is something that entertains and informs your audience. Every author has to find their own narrative and groove to make their book interesting to their readers as well.
~ Read It Now ~
“Obi Ifeanyi’s life is moving at a fast pace. He is now a husband and father. So while President Obama is contending with a tough reelection campaign, Obi Ifeanyi is dealing with the day to day pressures of married life and raising a son. When his former love interest, Sade Olufemi, comes back into his life and decides to run her political campaign with the help of his wife, Nkechi, Obi’s problems are compounded because Sade is a secret Nkechi is better not knowing about. While he struggles with the torment of Sade’s return, the upcoming wedding of his best friend from law school, will lead to the unveiling of a secret that will change the dynamics of the Ifeanyi family forever.”
Take a trip to Amazon to purchase yours today!