Originally from Nigeria, author Nnedimma (Nnedi) Okorafor, returns frequently; In her books she often brings her readers along the journey. Nnedi writes science fiction and fantasy novels, often exploring the hero’s experience from a young female’s perspective. Everything comes to life in her work–the trees, creatures and even the ground are animated in her stories.
In this interview, Nnedi shares her thoughts on how Nigeria influences her work, explains her thoughts on the business of writing, offers advice to aspiring authors, and shares what living unchained means to her.
You say Nigeria is your muse. How does Nigeria inspire you?
It’s not something I can really put words to. My parents have been taking me to Nigeria since I was a kid. It’s where some of the funniest, craziest, weirdest, scariest, happiest moments of my life have taken place. It’s where most of my relatives are. It’s where I’ve seen the coolest creatures.
It’s the place of the stories my parents and oldest relatives have told me. And I can’t name any books that contain the stories about Nigeria that reflect the ones in my head. That particular part of the earth speaks to me.