I’m finally happy to announce that my debut Novel, TẸJÚMỌLÁ, is now out! What better time to announce this than on my birthday!
Unconsciously, I’ve developed a habit of skipping through achievements and not allowing time for each one to soak in, but this is one I’m going to take time to get used to!
I’m an author!
It’s unbelievable how I’d been able to juggle writing this, alongside working part-time, handling masters courseworks and my dissertation as well as writing at The Student Lawyer, but it happened, and I can only thank God for the strength to do it.
This is the story I’m going to tell my kids, future mini-me’s: the year I turned 22 was the year I became an author!
The Story Behind Tejumola
The idea for Tejumola, the plot development and character ideas were picked off from a book I’d started in my final year of secondary school (SS3), which I couldn’t complete because, you know, life happened.
In December 2018, I officially started writing again. I’d left writing to focus on getting on my feet, trying to manoeuvre the transition from secondary school lifestyle to ‘adulting’, between 2014-2016. I started writing Tejumola again as a release, not officially called Tejumola at this point, but just bits and pieces of me, who I was or rather, saw myself as at the time, in contrast to who I wanted to be. I wrote the first part of the prologue in one night. It was like something just jumped at me, possessed me more likely, and my writing and the story just flowed out. It was when I’d finished writing the prologue that I knew: I was going to write a whole ass book.
After I’d sat down, created a plot outline and character developments and written a draft chapter 1, that I became scared. What if it doesn’t make sense? What if no one likes it? What if it ends up being utterly rubbish? I’d sent a couple of pages to some of my closest friends but I was still unsure. Then God literally shouted it at me through a teacher at a bible study group I’d attended at the time. It was then I knew with all confidence and surety: Tejumola wasn’t entirely my idea, it was God’s idea, so I needed to see it through.
Tejumola took me on an entire journey. Sometimes I’d write and find myself crying, pulling at strings of buried emotions and old feelings- it became too real. I had to step down for three whole months from writing to gather myself, this was after I’d successfully completed a mini-therapy. I wanted to tell my emotional journey. I wanted to tell my spiritual journey. But I didn’t want to be too drawn into the character whilst doing so. Like Virginia Woolf said, ‘every secret of a writer’s soul, every experience of her life, every quality of her mind, is written large in her works’. That’s what Tejumola is for me. My mind. My mind in a story form.
I wanted to tell my story, but I also wanted it to be relatable, not only to me, but to everyone who would ever pick it up to read (this is an official disclaimer that TEJUMOLA is not my story, but less than a fraction of it, purely based on some experiences and imagination). Tejumola was mostly inspired by my journey to Christ, I wanted to relay that story in a very relatable and enjoyable manner.
The day I got the notice that my book was now live on amazon (both the ebook and paperback version), the first thought that came to my mind was ‘what if I fail?’ But I had to stop myself and question whether I had unconsciously conditioned my mind to become ‘terrified’ of achieving goals and seriously ask myself positively, ‘what if I do well?’ I was so used to immediately thinking of the worst case scenario with anything positive that happened in my life that I became so used to waving off achievements like they were nothing. But I don’t want to do that with this book.
And that, Ladies and Gentlemen is how Tejumola was born! I hope you find solace in it as much as I did whilst writing, and I hope, in whatever way you decide to interpret it, it remains largely imprinted in your mind.
CHAPTER 22: THE YEAR I BECAME A NOVELIST.
TÉJUMOLA is now available on Amazon, both in paperback version and E-book version! CLICK HERE: PAPERBACK VERSION