26 July, 2014

#Interview :: Temba Magorimbo, #Author of Lake of My Heart

 Naomi is slightly shorter than Trevor with a broad smile and dimples when the mood is upon her. Trevor on his part is taller and broader with a good sense of humour. He used to like her laughter especially when she threw her head up exposing her tender neck. She loved his dance, his jokes and his behaviour when he was walking drunk. Give and take their differences, they are only human beings living in a melting pot of an economy. Their differences seem to be growing now in their marriage. What is wrong with marriage, Trevor constantly asks himself? Is it worth it to call a spade a spade and divorce? Then he checks in his mirror to look at the walking mistakes of broken homes. How will his little children fare without him or their mother? Since both of them are young, they will certainly remarry. One only needs to read the daily newspaper Monday to Friday to find court cases of step parents who have abused their charges. Can they work out their marriage? Trevor starts from the back looking at the days he had dated Naomi to seek and destroy that which causes them to separate. How is he going to deal with her moods, her temper tantrums and his own need to hold the green bottle? With three children, a mortgaged house, both parents having degrees and the economy in free fall, times are tough mentally for both Naomi and Trevor. Can they hold on until the end as the Zimbabwean political circus and national elections collide?

How did your life as a writer begin?
I started writing when I was less than twelve years old. In those days, in Rhodesia there was a radio program by Hilton Mambo that featured a Doctor Bobo who was a villain and Jason Zonk and his friends who were law abiding citizens. I tried copying them by creating my own villain and law abiding citizens stories. The stories (then) had no endings [maybe they were meant to be series]. Then I read Franklin W. Dickson [the Hardy Boys] and Caroline Keene [Nancy Drew]. I tried creating American based characters with a fictitious city. That was between the ages of fourteen and seventeen.

What makes you feel inspired to write?
I like to be creative. I believe creative fiction writing is the only trade where one can be what they research to be. One can be a doctor, a mistress, a lecturer albeit in fiction. When I read an ordinary web post I feel I need to expand on it.

How did you come with the idea for your current story?
Which one of my stories? Okay, let’s pick one, Lake Of My Heart, it is a general romance novel. It started as a short story looking at the possibility of divorce for a middle aged couple which later expanded into a fully-fledged fiction piece. I fell in love with the characters such that I was unable to separate them forever.

Tell us about your writing process. Do you outline, or are you more of a seat of your pants type of a writer?
I plan maybe a single page, go back and create what looks like a short story. I outline. Then I create a longer piece allocating what happens in which chapter before embarking onto the full story. At times, I leave the entire outline to create a new issue. I can’t remember where in any of my stories I just dived in without planning. My processes evolved from writing in long hand to typing using a Hermes Baby typewriter thence to a word processing computer.

What is your favorite scene in the book? Why?
The customary marriage scene because that is our culture and the white wedding because that is western culture imported into Zimbabwe. The outdoor and tent scenes are reminiscent of current wedding trends in Zimbabwe. All these scenes follow one after another in this story. I like marriages because that is the foundation of families. Take away strong marriages and look at those who are incarcerated, most come from broken homes. Just check the internet for these facts.

What is your most interesting writing quirk?
I write my ideas even in phone messages before transferring to a computer. That is better than writing in long hand.  I also have ideas for novels that refused to germinate for decades! Maybe one day they will come to fruition. Some novels went into thin air, their stories didn’t make the grade when I converted from long hand to word processing on computer. When I have a new project, I balance my writing by working on Excel and creating the number of minimum words per chapter so that not a single chapter has 15, 000-words while another has 1, 750!

What is your usual writing routine?
When I start writing I really get on it like a job. I write up to a minimum of 1500-words a day consistently every day of the week whenever I am available.

Who is the one author that you would love to meet someday and why?
One of the best of all authors I would like to meet are Wilbur Smith who is based in Cape Town, South Africa and has a track record of bestsellers. Besides which, Wilbur Smith is so creative that his creations are legendary. I would also like to meet our Zimbabwean favourites like Shimmer Chinodya and Charles Mungoshi because they created roads where there were none for the indigenous writers like me.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?
Writing is 10 % inspiration, 30% perspiration and the rest is hard marketing. You have to really work the midnight oil on this one. It is more important to market the book than find a publisher first. That is unless you are Barak Obama or Tiger Woods.

What would be the Dream Cast for you book if it was to be turned into a movie?
Morgan Freeman for the tall and lanky father of Trevor. Samuel L. Jackson as father of the bride. Both though will be more of guest artists as they won’t argue much in the ‘film’. I guess Kimberly Elsie could do as a cousin of the bride, Rosetta. Jennifer Hudson would do well as Naomi. As for Trevor, Danny Glover would do well with Lawrence Fishburne as Trevor’s friend Dumisani. I guess that pull the plug on the best African-American actors and actresses of our decade.

How do you spend your free time? Do you have a favorite place to go and unwind?
I watch cricket or English soccer on television if three are current matches. I like travelling noting scenes, roads and odd places. As to being mobile, it requires a good 4 x 4 to see the nice spots within Zimbabwe which I don’t have. I try always to relax when I am free looking at nature and God’s creation.

Can you share with us something off your bucket list?
I hope and wish to create as many bestsellers as I can write. Above all I would like to go on a holiday in and around Cape Town to blow off steam. 

Tell us three fun facts about yourself.
I am (i) humorous, (ii) creative and (iii) honest. There is a note of humour in my books though I am not a comedian. I think to beat the stress, one has to see the fun in hardships. Believe you me, life in Africa is all but fun. You can’t write fiction if you are not creative. Honesty breeds good character references.

What do you have in store next for your readers?
I have 3 (three) books which are double series making six titles. They will be out in years to come. One deals with a Caucasian woman and her love woes while the rest settle the scores between my fellow African protagonists and their heroes and heroines. In between might chip in new projects, who knows?

Is there anything else you’d like to share with your readers?
My web links are written below besides which readers can read free material on timbooktu (dot) com, search by my surname or archives.
http://creaspace.om/Butterscotch [for example and the rest}
For All Have Sinned
If Women Can Weep 
Lake Of My heart 
Let Close On Me 
Off The Eagle’s Claws 
Splash In The Loch 
Tigers Hunt At Night 

Buy Links:
1) Butterscotch: meet me in Alberta (Volume 2):
2) If Women Can Weep: then God will be the comforter:
3) Lake Of My Heart: where do broken hearts go?:
4) Off The Eagle's Claws:
5) Splash In The Loch: some guys have all the luck:
6) Let Close On Me: a Caucasian's fight for love in black Africa:

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