This week I have the pleasure of introducing Yejide Kilanko. I’ve known of her for a while but just got to really “know” her. Online of course, since she lives in Canada and I’m in the US of A. :-). But I can truly tell you that she is such a sweet lady with a big heart. But don’t let me be the judge read her words for yourself. Her debut novel Daughters Who Walk This Path is out now but she is also a powerful poet. Weaving words and raw emotions that have you captivated from beginning to end.
“My life as a writer began with poetry writing at the age 12. Because I didn’t think I could write one, I didn’t start working on my first novel manuscript until I was 33. Because it’s the best way I express myself, I wasn’t surprised the novel was inspired by a poem I wrote titled, Silence Speaks.
My story is really a miraculous one as I was signed up by a literary agent within one week and found a publisher interested in Daughters days after it was submitted. With Daughters now published in Canada, The United States, Germany and Thailand, I’m living proof that life can bring new dreams when least expected. That’s why it’s important to believe in your abilities and don’t give up.
I say to those who have the desire to write, go for it. As you work on that first manuscript, learn the craft of writing. Be patient with yourself. Re-write the sentence a hundred times if you need to. Always put your best work forward. There will be days when it seems the blank paper is winning, step away if you must, but go back and write anything that comes to your mind. You can only edit a full page.
As a Christian, I believe my ability to write is a gift from God. And like the other gifts he has given me, even as a mainstream fiction writer, I can use my work for his glory. I’m always happy when I receive mail from fans who tell me how reading Daughters has positively impacted their lives. I know some Christian writers struggle with the desire to write secular fiction. If this is your conviction, I want to say it’s possible to be a blessing wherever you’ve been planted.
Thanks Unoma for having me on your site. All the best in your writing journey.”
Listen to her read from her book…good stuff
Born in Ibadan, Nigeria, Yejide Kilanko is a writer of poetry, fiction and a therapist in children’s mental health. She currently lives in Ontario, Canada. Yejide’s debut novel, Daughters Who Walk This Path was published by Penguin Canada, April 2012. Her second novel is forthcoming from Penguin Canada, spring 2014. Please visit www.yejidekilanko.com