I finally tracked down the 1st lady of blogsville and asked her the questions we are all dying to know. Enjoy.
1) Could you please explain your name?
Myne Whitman is a name I coined myself when I began to write seriously while still in secondary school. Most of the books I read were in English, and since I was writing in English too, I decided my name would be the same. So the pseudonym is a play on the transliterated words of my maiden name.
2)When did you realise that you had a flair for writing?
I was a reserved child, a bookworm and with a keen imagination. When I finished reading all the books around me, I started doodling the stories from my day dreams on leftover exercise books from previous terms.
3)When did you first start writing fiction and what was your first story?
I started writing when I was still in primary school. My first story was a children’s adventure when I was in secondary school. My readers were mostly my siblings and a few friends. I stopped writing for a while when I was overtaken by teenage fever for Mills and Boon romances but before I finished my first degree I was writing again, short stories and poems.
4) When did you realise you could make a career of it?
I always dreamed of holding a book in my hands with my name on the cover as the author. I was discouraged earlier on when I tried to pursue a writing career after my first degree. I was rejected by a couple of the publishers we had in Nigeria in the nineties. I began thinking about a writing career again in 2009.
This time also I sent out queries to several publishers and agents but finally decided on self publishing. I now enjoy writing as my full time career and also act as my own agent and publicity and promotions manager.
5) Any advice for wannabe writers like me?
I will say that you should keep at it. A lot of wannabe writers are actually very talented and just have to continue polishing their craft till opportunity knocks. It was Petina Gappah who said on her blog "A writer is a person who writes...You, at your computer or with your notebook, writing, and writing, revising and writing, and revising again." A writer thus has to persevere, have a story they want to share and push till it's in a forms others can understand and appreciate. I wish you and everyone the best.
6)What did you do as a job before you started writing full time?
I have been a primary school teacher, NGO consultant, banker, skate-hire attendant, researcher and government worker in both Nigeria and Scotland.
7) What are your other hobbies and passions?
My major passion is in the health sector and how systems can be improved and made accessible. I have loads of interests, and not enough time...LOL. I love reading, travelling, meeting new people, sight-seeing, I call myself an adventurer and something of a thrill junkie. When I'm indoors, I love listening to music, playing games and watching TV.
8)Could you give young girls like me some advice on maintaining a healthy relationship?
I am not an expert by any long shot, but one thing I can say is that communication is key. Make sure both parties know where you stand on your beliefs, values and goals and work together as a team. With love you can work out the remaining differences especially when you inject some light-hearted fun stuff in the equation regularly.
9)Do you have any plans on relocating back to Nigeria?
There are no concrete plans right now but it is not entirely ruled out. A lot of my family is in Nigeria as well as friends and fans and it is likely I will be visiting often in the meantime.
10) And the question all of blogsville wants to know is how are you able to make your blog rounds so consistently and comment. I am one of your most avid readers but I rarely leave comments which is so bad cause I always value your comments so much!
Let’s just say I’m a career writer and blogger…lol. I try to be very professional in everything I do. And I love blogville and the citizens so much, so many people, so many stories, I just love it.