Chinenye Emezie-Egwuonwu photo courtesy of the author
Chinenye Emezie-Egwuonwu photo courtesy of the author

I am a prolific writer who considers herself a storyteller. I write both novels and short stories. I have just completed my first full length novel manuscript and have written dozens of short stories. I’m currently compiling my short stories into a collection for publication. My stories are centred around Africa and Africans living at home and in the diaspora.

I won the Africa Book Club Short Story Competition for the month of November 2013 for my short story titled ‘Glass House’. have a degree in Public Administration and will be commencing studies towards a post graduate in Creative Writing in Jan. I live in Johannesburg with my family.

What inspired you to write your story?

When I first saw the brief for My Holiday Shorts submission I quickly wrote a story that I thought fit the brief (no heavy or sad theme) but after I missed the first deadline I read the instructions again and realised that the story I had written didn’t fit the requirements at all… Lol. I was sitting in my favourite book store at the time and I did the first thing that came to my mind. I closed my eyes I visualised myself flying in the air around the room, aided by the air emitted by the cooling systems in the room… In that space of ‘airiness’ and ‘freedom’ so to speak, I felt like a bird and the word falcon began floating around in my head… Before long the air began to form words which began to form into a story… So, let’s just say ‘Chronicles of a Falcon Heart‘ was inspired by a strong desire of a caged bird to be free to soar again.

What’s your favourite book/story?

This is a difficult one. I love reading and read across a vast genre of books. So to be asked to choose a favourite book will be akin to asking to pick a favourite child out of my four kids… Lol!

In my younger years I read almost everything Enid Blyton put out and a number of Mills & Boons(who didn’t?). Lol. But as I grew up I would say that I’ve have read books that have changed my life so to speak by shaping and molding my life philosophies and principles, and have inspired my writing and gift of story telling and these include amongst many ‘Things fall Apart‘ by Chinua Achebe, ‘The Joys of Motherhood‘ and ‘Second Class Citizen‘ by Buchi Emecheta, ‘Jagua Nana’s Daughter‘ by Cyprian Ekwensi, a number of Wole Soyinka’s plays as well as Ken Saro-Wiwa’s books which I read in junior high. For a light relaxing read though I enjoy and have read quite a number of Danielle Steele’s works, a good number of Christian fiction by Francine Rivers, and finally John Grisham’s books tend to jolt me right up to pay attention. So, no favourites there, I’m a book addict.

How much of your work reflects your life?

Not much. I write through inspiration not personal experiences. But societal ills and Africa’s challenges and the many sufferings of Africans tend to be highlighted more and more in many of my works. But I enjoy writing a heart-warming, fun yet message-filled story such as ‘Chronicles…’ from time to time and have written many non ‘heavy-themed’ stories since then.

If you were to write a book about your life, what would the title be?

Tiger Dove.

Those two words are animals that best describe me…Lol.



Chronicles of a Falcon Heart

Blue and red, fuchsia and pink swished around and about in the hall. The colourful ribbons were making a statement, one that says ‘I have no care in the world.’ They could up and go and settle at will as much as they wanted, wherever the wind took them. Only their aider and abettor, in this case, was the artificial air emitted by the air-conditioning system.

Falcon kept her gaze on the long shiny materials, getting cross-eyed from watching the display, wishing she could…

read the rest of Chinenye’s story in our collection of short short stories. Available in print and ebook format from Book Lover’s Market