AN INTERVIEW WITH PRAISE OHANWE – The winner of Literarywizard Weekly Writing Contest

Kevin Onuegbu, the Founder of Literarywizard interviews Ohanwe Praise, the winner of LITERARYWIZARD WEEKLY WRITING CONTEST on his winning story titled “Christmas in Suite 203″.

“LEARNING AND KNOWLEDGE IS WHAT PUTS YOU AHEAD”

 

Kevin Onuegbu: Congratulations on winning the Literarywizard Weekly Writing Contest (LWWC) and eventually becoming the “Writer of the week”

Praiz : Thank you sir

Kevin Onuegbu : Can you tell a little about yourself?

Praiz: My name is Ohanwe Praise. I am a freelance writer, professional editor and student optometrist.

Kevin Onuegbu: That is indeed very brief. Do you mind to tell us about your family background and it’s influence on your creativity?

Praiz: Do I go into details?

Kevin Onuegbu: Please be my guest

Praiz: Okay. I come from the Eastern part of Nigeria, Imo state precisely. Not to be self-aggrandizing but we happen to be quite smart at home, all of us. Growing up in the midst of very smart but apparently different kind of people made me open to creativity. My senior sister would dance for as long as she could, the oldest would read any and everything she could lay her hands on. So I kinda knew there was more to life than just going to school and being a good student. Watching my family interact made me start loving reading more and more because I would see characters who were in the exact same scenarios as I was. The more I read, the better I started getting at writing.

Praiz: Oh, and I also kept a journal, as encouraged by my sister. It helped!

Kevin Onuegbu: That’s a lovely and happy home…I must say

Praiz: Thank you sir

Kevin Onuegbu: You are welcome. So when did you know that you were going to write? In other words, when did you start writing?

Praiz: Well, I started writing when it became clear what a pen and paper were meant for. I would write anything that came to mind albeit from the perspective of a child. Teenage years had me drop my pen, because of the tumult I went through then. But about two years ago, I picked up the pen again, and I have not looked back ever since.

Kevin Onuegbu: Wow… that’s really great! Never looking back. Can you tell us about your winning story? How did you write it? What was the inspiration behind it?

Praiz: “Christmas in suite 203″ was spontaneous piece. Lately, I started working a 13 hours per day job, in a hotel. That piece was inspired by the things that go on in some hotels( not where I work) and how much horror could be unleashed, even on the best of days.

Kevin Onuegbu: Your stay there must have been eventful?

Praiz: Yes, it is eventful. But I must say that the story was entirely a work of fiction, it didn’t happen.

Kevin Onuegbu: I really liked the way you used the words, the descriptions, attention to details. It really shows that you are very observant.

Praiz: We are writers, that is what we do.Thank you so much.

Kevin Onuegbu: You are welcome. Who are your favourite authors and their works?

Praiz: Okay. My favorite author is James Hadley Chase. He writes mystery suspense books and in my opinion is the best author of all time. The thing I love about his work is how each word leaves you hungry for more. Once you pick up his book, chances are that you’d be hooked till you are done. As for the end, he’d make you feel stupid for not being able to figure out how it would have ended.

Praiz: Next to him is John Graham. I read his book, The partner and ever since I have been on the lookout for his work.

Kevin Onuegbu: Wow…that’s great

Praiz: As for Nigerian authors, I love Chimamanda Adichie very much. She’s what we should call a pen goddess.

Kevin Onuegbu: There is one last question I have for you, I must warn you, it might it might look a bit personal(chuckles)

Kevin Onuegbu: Where do you see yourself in the writing world in 5 years time?

Praiz: Oh, that’s a big one! In the next five years I would be a published author of at least two books, of which one would be a bestseller, in both soft copies and paperback. By then, I would be a mentor to many upcoming authors who’d make it big as writers.

Kevin Onuegbu: Wonderful!

Praiz: Yes it is. But it is also quite attainable

Kevin Onuegbu: You can say that again! So what is your advice for our fellow young writers?

Praiz: It may not make so much sense now, but keep on writing. Practice, that’s how you hone your craft. Learn, knowledge is what puts you ahead. And give your best, always. Someone once advised; ” One shouldvdo everything that one has to do as though the spotlight is on one because the spotlight is always on one”. You may not know who is watching or whose camera is taking a shot.

Kevin Onuegbu: Wow…that is great! One last thing before you go.

Kevin Onuegbu: Are you married or single??

Praiz: (Laughs)This was…unexpected!

Praiz: I am single!

Kevin Onuegbu: And ready to mingle ! Are you saying that your hotspot is always on and that “They” can connect their WiFi???

Praiz: Maybe.

Kevin Onuegbu: Nice to have you here…once again Praiz. And congratulations on your win…more wins ahead

Praiz: It’s nice being here.Thank you very much!

Kevin Onuegbu: You are welcome.

Christmas in Suite 203 (a story)

 

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