A couple of years ago one of the panels I attended at TOPCWF had a late substitute on it in the form of Leye Adenle. Not an author I was aware of at the time, he was such a fantastic addition to the panel that I rushed straight out to buy his book at the book tent. Clearly I wasn’t the only person as by the time I got there they had sold out, so I had to wait a while to get my hands on a copy of Leye’s crime novel ‘Easy Motion Tourist’. Once I did though Leye soon became one of my favourite authors and so as part of October’s Black History Celebration Month I was delighted to be able to do a Q&A with the man himself.
Hi Leye and thanks for your time. Firstly have you always been a writer and who inspired you? Do you prefer writing short stories, novels or articles?
I have always written, even when it was just crayon on the walls of my parent’s home. For as far as I can remember, and since when I was reading, I’ve wanted to be a writer and I’ve written. As a child I started with poems, short stories and even comics that I drew with my brother, then I had many failed attempts to write complete novels, then I did even more short stories and even managed some complete manuscripts that I shall never allow anybody to read. I lost one manuscript that I really loved, and recently, while searching for something else, I found a complete novel I wrote in longhand in a notebook. Of all the forms of writing, I like writing articles the least, but I still like writing them.
The books I read from a young age inspired me to write – it must be that because I cannot remember a time when I did not want to be a writer.
Can you tell us what a typical working day looks like for you?
My working day starts with the alarm, followed by a mad dash to get to work. I take the long bus route when I’m not running late. This gives me the chance to read whatever book I’m reading at the moment on a upper deck window seat. Each day at work is different, apart from reoccurring meetings, due to what I do. I coach software developers, software development teams, and organisations. After work, depending on the day of week, I either go to the gym then go home to write a few pages of the book I’m writing at the moment, or I go straight home and write a few pages of the book I’m writing at the moment.
How would you spend a perfect afternoon away from work?
The perfect afternoon away from the day job would be spent in my favourite coffee shop on my favourite chair next to the socket to plug in my laptop.
Are you an avid reader yourself? If so, which authors do you find yourself returning to time and again?
I love books. ‘Wouldn’t be a writer otherwise. These days I read two books at the same time; one fiction and one non-fiction related to my day job. I tend to only read non-fiction when I’m writing which means I go all greedy in-between writing as I catch up with all the titles I’ve been stockpiling.
I have read Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart almost every couple of years for the past twenty years or so. If any unpublished manuscripts of his were to suddenly surface, it’d be like winning the lottery for me.
I cannot stop reading Lee Child’s Jack Reacher. I was crazy about James Patterson but got exhausted trying to keep up. It’s kinda comforting knowing that there’ll always be a new Alex Cross novel.
What is the one thing that you wish people knew about Lagos that no one ever knows?
Lagos is a state, not a city. Yeah, it’s big. Massive. Twenty million people. That’s because its a state! Argh!!!
Finally can you tell us a little about what you are working on next?
I’m working on some Unfinished Business with The Amaka Series. 🙂
That’s great news and I’ll definitely keep an eye out for that.
This is a series that I would highly recommend for all fans of gritty crime fiction. If you would like to find out how good this Nigerian Crime Series is for yourself then you can find both Easy Motion Tourist and his latest When Trouble Sleeps from amazon.