Author of the Week — Sinmisola Ogunyinka

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An interview with Sinmisola Ogunyinka. Read our review of her book, Her Lover here. In March this year, we interviewed Sinmisola after reading another of her books, Scent of Water. Read the previous interview here.

LE: You have published so many books and short stories. You make writing look so easy. What is your secret to being such a prolific author?

Sinmisola: Without sounding like a spirit, my secret to writing so much really eludes me. I get worried when a new story is not coming into my brain but besides watching out and searching inward for something that will trigger a story, I don’t know where it comes from. One thing I do though is that I can write anywhere, anytime. If an idea comes to my mind, I take a quick note of it wherever – on a piece of paper, on my phone, on my laptop, or sent to my email/WhatsApp/text, sometimes!

LE: What is the most difficult part about writing for you?

Sinmisola: With time, I have come to master how I write, and I have a decent idea of my style and how I want to be read but the toughest part of writing for me is when the characters refuse to communicate with me. For instance, I started a story more than ten years ago, and I can’t finish it. I know the story but there is no flow. I don’t feel the emotions with my protagonist, so I’ve left it alone. This, I find very frustrating.

LE: How do you come up with the titles to your books?

Sinmisola: This is a tough one. Initially, I tried to find titles from the Bible, and scripture to guide me but that hasn’t worked a lot of times. I think titles come to my mind the way the stories come but I usually do a little research by searching the title on amazon.com. I may modify the title if there are too many of it already on Amazon. But I like my titles to somewhat capture the story without giving off too much.

LE: What is the significance of the title, Her Lover?

Sinmisola: Her Lover is the story of a girl who went missing and her lover went in search of her. There really isn’t a big significance about the title.

LE: What do you hope your readers take away from Her Lover?

Sinmisola: Typical of many of my novels, there is entertainment as well as life lessons. I want readers to get both from Her Lover.

LE: What were the key challenges you faced when writing Her Lover?

Sinmisola: I started the novel one fine day and finished it one fine day about a month later. I didn’t face any challenges writing it. I was into both main characters from get-go. I really enjoyed writing the book.

LE: What books or authors have most influenced your own writing?

Sinmisola: Francine Rivers’ books really influenced my writing. I read almost everything she wrote in the 2000s – Mark of the Lion series, Redeeming Love and Atonement Child are tops for me. Frank Peretti’s writing also influenced me a lot. Secular authors that influenced me are Helen Ovbiagele, Sandra Brown, and Linda Howard. Funmilayo Fakunle-Onadeko, the author of Sacrificial Child and a host of others is the first author I truly identified with, and I wanted to write like her. Somehow, I can’t find any of her books anywhere anymore.

Sinmisola has several published books.

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She’s on Twitter and has a blog.