A Book and a Tantrum
I’m writing this on a Saturday afternoon in my living room. The TV is off. I normally do this odd thing where I sometimes switch it on, go to the bedroom and browse the internet then get up like a mad man, almost dropping my laptop, when I hear something interesting. Little kids are playing outside mostly tots no older than five. There’s this little one who makes a ruckus about everything. She will cry because she’s being forced to do homework, she will cry because she’s being told to eat. She will cry because she can’t wear her favorite dress and go play with her friends.
She was a little Tasmanian devil when I first moved here but she’s growing up now, becoming a little woman. Last year, matter-of-factly, I found a crumpled paper under my door written in bad English with red and yellow crayon; “Mary Xmas” and “lav u” and I knew it was her. She probably coaxed her young mother into the sin because she’s always saying hi to me as I climb down the stairs and showing me these little ridiculous artworks she makes and I giggle like a smitten little girl then run like hell because I’m a chap and chaps can’t handle women who love them. That one will be bossy. I only feel sorry for the little boy she lays her sights on next.
Besides the little noises of the kids and one or two cars wheezing in the distance, it’s pretty quiet which is unusual because there are plenty of trees around here and birds are always singing and chirping. Being a weekend I suppose they have gone out. Perhaps their husbands are on business trips and they have decided to let loose on a girl’s night binge where they will sip Dom Perignon and puff shisha, smoke coming out of their insolent beaks like a chimney because who knows what these little cute things are really into?
The sun is shy, it was sweltering earlier a ring of sunlight was burning in the sky like the end of a lit cigarette but now it has hid behind the clouds as if it has seen someone it owes money. Only shads and small rays of it are penetrating my light brown curtains. I have just polished off the final page on Tina Fey’s Bossypants. It is supposed to be a comedy book but it’s mostly about her time in Hollywood writing for Sunday Night Live, a space I would love to get in. I imagine, in the peak of my career, I will have a couple of bestselling books under my belt and I will be writing blockbuster movies for international markets and butting heads with the who’s who in the industry. People like RR Martin, David Benioff and Kevin Hart.
Bossypants puts to the torch society’s misconceptions. Most women have a problem with one or two parts of their body; some think their nose is too big, their tits are too small or their bum is not big enough. Tina Fey pokes fun at this and goes on to affirm that perfect women like Kim Kardashian and Beyonce only exist in the unscrupulous world of photoshop because a real woman will have some fat under her belly and a few stretchmarks on her thighs and bum and it’s nothing to be ashamed of, it’s called being a human being and human beings have flaws.
The book is full of dry humor and little nuggets of life lessons. Only Tina Fey says thought provoking things like, “May my daughter be beautiful but not damaged, for it’s the damage that draws the creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the beauty.” Bossypants is engineered for the urban woman. Someone who doesn’t take herself too seriously. Someone who wants to laugh at herself and put a lesson or two in her purse or sneak it under her bra.
My phone is seated on the table, its 5 inch black screen reflecting the white ceiling. I have just dialed this skirt who didn’t pick. In fact I have been calling her for quite some time now and I honestly think that’s the final straw that breaks the camel’s back. The camel here being me. I’m done and I really mean it. We went out and I thought it went really well. There was a lot of laughter, giggling and over the jeans action. We even scheduled a second date but a few texts in and she went cold on me. I don’t know what I said, maybe I used the monkey or eggplant emoji wrongly but she just ghosted. I thought I had built a callousness over the years. These things never get to me. I usually pour myself a beer and forget the skirt before the froth settles but this one has my knickers in a wringer because I like her. It’s not even her spaced out almond shaped eyes, smooth oval face, infectious smile or her gravity-defying breasts that get to me. It’s her personality; bubbly, vivacious and childlike. But she’s also a cold blooded mercenary. She doesn’t fight fair. She will bluetick me. Then put a seductive picture dressed to the nines and I will text her and call her again and she won’t reply to either. Bloody killjoy!
It’s her ritual, she updates her WhatsApp profile picture every week with an extremely gorgeous photo of her. Something showing her plunging delectable cleavage then updates her status with something sneaky. Something that makes me feel as if I’m losing my marbles. If you happen to come across this article ma’am, I just want closure, nothing more. Not even a taste of your strawberry red full lips. Just closure ma’am. Just closure.
Ghosting, Ghosts and Ghostbusters aside. This blog has been getting quite some buzz thanks to you. When I started this blog back in April this year it was supposed to be a channel to keep me grounded. At the time, I was working on this book I thought would launch me into the stratosphere and forge me into a big wheel. I had written around twenty five thousand words of copy and a few chapters were pretty tight but I wasn’t feeling the plot. It felt cliché and I kept thinking I can’t have my debut book be a cliché and just then my computer crashed and my book went up in smoke with it. I had this delusion that I would get published this year but I have quickly realized that novels are like kids, you have to let them grow. And they don’t grow in a month or even a year. I’m working on something else, I won’t make any promises because, like I said, novels are like kids. You can feed them Cerelac, take them to the best schools, have a pastor lay hands on them but ultimately; how they turn out is never in your control.
This blog has been daylight in a writing dream that sometimes feels like groping in the dark and like you, I’m usually looking forward to these Wednesday posts too. I have received a bit of fan mail on email@example.com and on my Facebook inbox mostly from readers saying they love my writing, and others telling me they have always wanted to write and what they can do to start writing and like any other dream you want to make a reality, I tell them they have to start and they have to get serious about it.
Some readers have also expressed an interest in guest posting here. I have read a lot of work but I have felt it wasn’t ready to go up here. We’re not high maintenance. Just make your writing flow like an eloquent chap, with a calm demeanor in a blue pinstripe Ravazzolo suit and a thin Bulgari watch on his wrist. It won’t hurt if Mercedes E350 keys are dangling on his fingers as well hehe. Seriously though, there’s really no secret formula to having tight copy, simply read widely and write and rewrite till it feels right.
Pick up The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, A Million Little Pieces by James Frey and This is How You Lose her by Junot Diaz. They will give you a feel of what good writing is about.
I have also received Dear Sir/madam and yours sincerely mail as well. First of all I’m not a madam neither am I this uptight chap you should address as sir. Think of me as your brother, someone you can have a laugh over a beer with. So don’t be too serious with your emails. Be yourself, make a joke, be witty and for crying out loud throw an emoji or two in there as well but don’t make it an eggplant emoji least I ghost on you like our friend up there.
Editor credit: Shiku Ngigi
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You want to tell me there’s no African Writer you can recommend as a good writer? “Pick up The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, A Million Little Pieces by James Frey and This is How You Lose her by Junot Diaz. They will give you a feel of what good writing is about.”
Good post but.