welcomes as our guest Nick Ochere who was born in Begoro in the
Eastern Region of Ghana where he started his elementary education. He
later attended Emit Electronics Institute and worked at the
Department of Civil Aviation for a few months before leaving the
shores of Ghana for Nigeria. He has travelled extensively and now
lives in London with his wife and four children.
Nick has recently published, Your Own People.
Good day Nick and thanks for participating in our interview.
How did you get started in writing? What keeps you going?
Nick: To start with, I must make it clear to readers that I did not have a secondary school education to study English properly but that did not prevent me from reading. I have read a lot, seen a lot and been through a lot so I felt I should share some of my experiences with others, What keeps me going is the enthusiasm of letting others know some of the things to expect in life and how to prepare for them.
Norm: What inspired you to write Your Own People and could you tell our readers a little about your book?
Nick: I have come to the realization that infertility is a major issue worldwide, but people talk about it mutely. I want to break that silence. As the title of the book goes: Your Own People, in the normal scheme of things one would expect his/her own people to be the ones to protect and support him/her but it is sad to know that some of your own people would be among those seeking your downfall and destruction.
Before an outsider could
get to destroy you, it would always be one of your own people who
would lead the way. Serwaa could not have tried to trap Joe if his
own aunt, Cornie had not been involved. But with the protective arm
of God around his faithful servant, Joe, their evil plot bounced back
on them, making a madman chase high society girl Serwaa about and
claim her to be his wife.
Norm: Did you write the story to express something you believe or was it just for entertainment?
Nick: It was to express something that I believe is happening in our world but not talked about openly. However, I also aimed to entertain readers as I educate them on issues confronting marriages and how to deal with those issues.
Norm: How much of the book is realistic?
Nick: I would about 80% of it is realistic as it deals with everyday life occurrences.
Norm: What were your goals and intentions in this book, and how well do you feel you achieved them?
Nick: My goals and intentions were to prove to all that you don’t need Masters Degree or hold a PhD to achieve greatness or make an impact in society. What you need is common sense, determination and a positive attitude.
In my town of Begoro in
Ghana with a population of about thirty five thousand, I am the only
person to have written and published a book, even though there are a
lot of PhD holders from Begoro. And I consider this as an
Norm: What was the most difficult part of writing this book?
Nick: It was when I needed to create scenes in my mind before putting it into writing. I remember once I started a sentence and it took me more than a week to find the right words to complete that sentence. The first time it happened I felt so worried because I thought I couldn’t go any further. It’s difficult trying to create something out of nothing but the finished product always makes me feel top of the world. Sometimes I look back at my writing and ask myself; Where did I get this idea from?
Norm: What helps you focus when you write?
Nick: I am someone endowed with the gift of concentration, even in the midst of confusion. Nothing distracts me when I know what I want to do. A lot may be going on around me but until I put a fool stop to what I have started, I keep working at it, even if I have to do them in pieces. I have parts of my manuscript on toilet tissues, because those ideas came while I was using the toilet!
Norm: How has your environment/upbringing colored your writing and do
you have a specific writing style?
Nick:I am a typical rural boy. My environment and upbringing has indeed coloured my writing. My aim is to paint a picture of the real rural African culture; Ghana especially, to those who wish to know about Africa and also those of African heritage in the diasporas. Getting your school fees paid, uniform replaced and getting ready for school in the morning in an African rural area is an experience which many people are not familiar with.
Norm: What books have most influenced your life?
Nick: The Bible and The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale
Norm: Where can our readers find out more about you and your book?
Nick: Readers can find out more about me and my book on my WEBSITE and on FACEBOOK.
Norm: What is next for Nick Ochere?
Nick: Part 2 of the book is ready and I am currently looking for sponsors, having single-handedly published part 1. I had to go for a total shoulder replacement some time after the part 1 came out so I have not been able to work to raise money to publish the part 2.
Norm: As the interview comes to an end, what question do you wish that someone would ask about your book, but nobody has?
Nick: What plans do you have for this book?
My answer: I have plans to turn this book into a film and willing to talk to Producers.
Thanks once again and good luck with all of your future endeavors