By Juliet Mwangi.
To some of us, there is nothing good in tragic moments. Not so for Douglas Logedi, and here is why:
- How did this journey begin?
My writing journey has been a long and exciting one. I started thinking about writing in 2013 but never put it to practice. In fact, I refused to be acknowledged as a writer. This was despite the fact that I was writing poems and short stories for my blog that was hosted on BlogSpot at the time. However, in 2015, this changed. A childhood friend of mine was shot dead in the Garissa attack and the grief drove me to write a short story in his memory. In the same year, there was a writing competition for which submitted a story. It did not win but the inspiration from it and the encouragement from a friend of mine named Beryl got this story up.
- Your book, from the title itself to the cover page, is intriguing. Why should one get to turn the cover and start reading it?
Chasing a Bullet is not your regular novel. If I were a Non-Kenyan reading it somewhere in New York (with foreign characters and a setting you know nothing about), I would still comfortably say it is a crime thriller done in Kenya for Kenyans. The moment you decide to go past the cover, you will not be reading a story; you will be living through it. I try to bring life to the story by making it engaging, gripping, and authentic.
- Is this it or should we expect another book (s) from you?
Expect many other books from me. I have actually given a hint of what is coming next. All you need to do is to read the end of this book. *wink*
- What are some of the challenges you faced before getting published and how did you handle them?
My memory of the challenges is scanty because I love challenges and they become part of my routine so much that I do not feel them. However, do not underestimate the work of getting the right people to do different things; editing, proofreading, design, and printing. Do not underestimate the cost of self-publishing and negative energy from people who see the story in their own lenses. I lost count of those who were against publishing this book. I am just grateful to have pushed through and have Chasing a Bullet on your bookshelves.
- Writers Guild Kenya has this year’s theme as ‘Holding hands’. What contribution would you give to see this theme into fruition by the end of the year?
Let us see whether we can bring through more people to tell their stories in an authentic way without fear.
Let us see whether we can create more diverse effect across the country.
Let us see how much mentorship we can create. I believe holding hands should be about walking together and helping each other soar to our very best selves. I would like to especially see us bring up new and motivated writers from the young ambitious minds we have. That is the best I would suggest.
- What would you have done differently if given the chance to impact young writers?
I am not experienced enough or ‘developed’ as a writer to answer this. We can only hope, as young writers, that more support will come our way as we try to grow.
- How long does it take you to finish reading one book? And do you have a reading list of the year?
I read a book in two weeks then take a week’s break and get to it again.
No, I do not have a reading list. I am a random person who reads the book I pick. Reading lists do not work so well for me, I would rather enjoy the spontaneity.
- If you were to meet an author (dead or alive) who would they be? Why would you want to meet them so much?
I would love to meet Stieg Larsson. I love the way he captures crime in his books and how he develops his stories. Stieg is such a deeply authentic writer with a strong interest in romance, crime, and violence. Very few people have that combination.
- What is a typical Monday for you?
I am self-employed. Every day is a Monday. Therefore, my typical Monday and my typical Friday are the same. I wake up, check my mails, obviously take my tea and sometimes, I work out. From there, my day is unscripted. I could spend the whole day indoors working on a proposal, writing, or even watching television or spend it in the in meetings and pitching. That goes on until 7pm. From there, it’s resting at home, having dinner and retiring to bed in the wicked hours of the night.
- What is your favorite chill spot and food?
I would love you to show me some chill spots. I do not have favorites. I love food. I am Luhya, which means the status of my appetite is not a secret to anyone. Nonetheless, I am somewhat traditional. Get me some ugali and traditional vegetables and I will be good to go. If you have to cook some flesh for me, make it chicken or liver. Make sure there is tea after the meal, whatever the meal is. By the way, I hope I am giving you a menu of what to make me (chuckles).
You do not want to miss the opportunity to live through this thrilling novel. Grab your copy today!
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