✕ CLOSE Online Special City News Entrepreneurship Environment Factcheck Everything Woman Home Front Islamic Forum Life Xtra Property Travel & Leisure Viewpoint Vox Pop Women In Business Art and Ideas Bookshelf Labour Law Letters
Click Here To Listen To Trust Radio Live

How near-death experience prompted my novel – Maryam Awaisu

Maryam Awaisu is the author of ‘Burning Bright’, a novel about her experience with sickle cell anaemia, shortlisted for the NLNG Nigeria Prize for Literature,…

Maryam Awaisu is the author of ‘Burning Bright’, a novel about her experience with sickle cell anaemia, shortlisted for the NLNG Nigeria Prize for Literature, 2016. In this interview with Bookshelf, she talks about her book, supporting those with the disease, and more. Excerpts:

Bookshelf: In 2013, your novel ‘Burning Bright’, about your experience with sickle cell anaemia was released. What spurred you on to write the book at that point in your life?

Maryam Awaisu: I always wanted to, because the pain and trials we face daily are not understood or known much and I want people to understand and prevent it. But a near-death experience in 2012 prompted me to get to it.

Bookshelf: What was most challenging about writing the book?

Awaisu: What was most challenging while writing was the trauma and memory of the pain in order to capture it well. In writing and editing the manuscript, I cried many times because while the book is fiction, the emotion wasn’t for me.

Bookshelf: How do you think your book will play a significant role in helping persons with sickle cell overcome it?

Awaisu: I don’t think it can ever be overcome completely, but I hope it gives hope. Nadia shows us how she dusted herself up and continued pushing whenever sickle cell tripped her. It’s easy to want to give up on life and dreams but her courage and tenacity hopefully will inspire my readers to keep pushing at their own time and pace. I hope my book inspires people to prevent sickle cell, more than anything else.

Bookshelf: You volunteer at a Sickle Cell foundation in Kaduna. Do you have the intention of documenting some of your experiences there?

Awaisu: Some of the experiences were featured in ‘Burning Bright’, actually. I don’t have any plans to, but you know how it is with inspiration, it hits you when it does. If I get inspired to, I might.

Bookshelf: What are you working on at the moment?

Awaisu: I just launched two more books, Ms. Joana’s Rules and The Thing about Compromise. My fourth book is nagging at me to start writing it but I have not started yet.

Join Daily Trust WhatsApp Community For Quick Access To News and Happenings Around You.

Do you need your monthly pay in US Dollars? Acquire premium domains for as low as $1500 and have it resold for as much as $17,000 (₦27 million).

Click here to see how Nigerians are making it.