By Sianah Nalika Deshield, writer
Every author has his/her own unique story about how they became a writer. These stories can sometimes be funny, sad, happy, and even inspirational. My story consists of all of these things. To start off, I was born in the heart of the 1990 civil war in Liberia – a war that lasted sixteen years – so you can understand that unlike many people, my entire childhood wasn’t so beautiful. Memorable? Hell yeah, it was. I laugh with my family now about many of the things that happened. Now that the difficult times are over, we can laugh about those awful experiences. Time really does heal wounds.
I remember that as a child in the middle of the wrecks of war, I couldn’t figure out what I wanted to be. Unlike all of my friends who could do this effortlessly, I spent most of my time questioning what I would do with my degree when I was out of school. I was curious – would my future depend on what I had studied or experienced or would it depend solely on what I aspire to become? In between these thoughts, however, I was sure of one thing – I was going to become an important person in society. I knew from the beginning that I would have the power, influence, and profession to change the lives of an entire generation. For that, I was certain.
Luckily, I had grandparents who spoiled me with so much love, and made efforts to give me some level of normalcy during my childhood, I was always reminded of what I had to achieve and whom I had to do it for. My grandmother would, at all times, remind me that being the oldest grandchild came with a huge responsibility – a responsibility I shouldn’t mess up. She wanted me to be like Condoleezza Rice, the former United States Secretary of State who was a highly educated, successful, and a powerful black woman. Undoubtedly, Ms. Rice became my personal hero. And these largely put serious pressure on me as a young woman in a society of traumatized youths and less parenting due to survival.
Perhaps it was because of the pressure or perhaps it was because of everything I had seen and brainstormed about as a child, all I knew was that I was beginning to conceive images in my head about various perceptions and about many possibilities. I considered myself a writer in 2017 when I had the idea for my first book, Thou Shalt Love. And let me say, I had a blast writing it! The pure joy I felt while writing about the beautiful ideas that flowed in my head gave me the answer I had always been looking for – how to create everything from a little imagination. I wanted to change the lives of an entire generation, I told myself, how about I do it by changing the narrative of the African continent?
Over time, being introduced to politics as a National Student Leader, and getting a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from my home country, Liberia, and a Masters of Arts Degree in International Relations from Cyprus, I realized that I had been exposed to the world of politics and leadership that if I am ever to be a world leader, I will be a just one. I believe in the rule of law and the human interpretation of those laws. I believe people should be able to take care of themselves and their families without overworking and getting old, only to have nothing to point all the years of work and service to. I believe in providing basic human services to people, and making sure everyone can live in a safe, peaceful, and happy environment. It’s safe to say that I would kick ass as a world leader, but until I am in such a position, I will continue to be passionate about changing the narrative about the African continent, and lifting my country, Liberia, high through storytelling. Storytelling is what I am great at and I will use my gifts to impact the world.
Every time someone asks me to describe myself in five words outside of storytelling, I tell them I am exceptional, impressionable, ambitious, strong, and witty. It may seem condescending to say this, but trust me, you will love hanging out with me. I am the “life of the party”. I am also the kind of friend who would tell you the truth, and push you to be the best you can be. With everything I have gone through in my life, where I came from, and the sacrifices I have made, only someone with good qualities can go through it all in one piece and still be hopeful, charming, happy, and content, while being undeniably and nu-apologetically ambitious. I made this conclusion after going through serious self-evaluation and considering the positive and analytical human that I still am today.
If I were to talk about the stories I have written, I would argue that the topics I write about and not just the characters in my stories inspire me. Take McSexy for instance, Lily Annah, a character in the story, is a beautiful, shy, intelligent, and modest lecturer who is the perfect woman for many people. Unfortunately, she isn’t well versed in relationships and social situations because she had little time dating and more time getting an education and a career. We all know that woman. They call her a nerd. Although she seems like a perfect person, she is flawed like everyone else. She makes mistakes when it comes to love and life issues. Like every woman would understand, being the first girl child in any family puts you in the adult position to take care of your family when things go wrong. Lily had to step up to save her family and she did.
Mike, another character, on the other hand, is a smart young man who lost his parents at an early age, lived life through grief and tried to fill the void in his life with sex. When he couldn’t fill that void with one woman, he avoids her and moves on to the next. A man who is intelligent, highly educated, kind, and yet promiscuous is the perfect example of how we can be beautifully flawed. Let us not also forget about Maggie, my personal favorite person. Maggie is Lily’s best friend and her strength, courage, and push constitutes the example of the friend we all need. And Mama Naa Lily’s mother, oh dear, when I think of Mama Naa, she reminds me of all the African mothers that I know and have heard about. She is so dramatic that writing her scenes made me laugh the entire time.
When I was writing about these characters, I wanted people to relate to their stories. I wanted everyone to identify themselves or their families with a certain character in the book. And I enjoyed writing the theatrics of the typical African family. If I were ever allowed to play any character in my book, I would definitely choose to play Maggie Ampofu. I would choose her because of her personality. Maggie has this aura that is beautiful and impressionable. And enacting her strength and daring character would give me the thrill of a lifetime. Honestly, I see a little bit of myself in Maggie. I know it’s not fair, but I couldn’t help it.
I remember that when the story was ready, I went searching for a picture that would work with it. I spent some time finding the perfect picture, but when I did, when I saw it, there came the name! The picture spoke a single word to me – McSexy. Looking at the guy in the picture was a sight to behold. “He is truly McSexy”, I told myself, and he went well with Mike Frimpong.
When I read the book now, I always can’t wait to get to my favorite part. It is when Mike confronted Lily about having sex on his newly inserted sperm that was supposed to make his babe. This part is emotional, hilarious, ridiculous and entertaining:
“I can’t believe you slept with a man while my sperm was supposed to be in you making my baby? Are you insane, Lily? You had the nerve to have sex when the sperm I worked so hard for was inserted in you just a few hours earlier? You are unbelievable!”
“What is unbelievable is the fact that you have forgotten that same man whom I had sex with was you! Are you kidding me right now, acting disgusted that I slept with someone on your sperm? Are you seriously accusing me of cheating on you with you?”
Reading a scene like this one makes me want to spend time with Mike Frimpong. If only I could spend a day with him, it would involve studying his mind and his body. If I had the chance to run my hands on Mike’s body, trust me, I would take it. Judge all you want, but if only you knew Mike Frimpong as I do, you would be fighting to get a taste of him. And trust me, it would turn out to be an entirely ecstatic experience. Everyone falls in love with Mike Frimpong, AKA Mr. Vagina. This is why he is known as the Master of the Female Orgasm.
When it is time for me to write about a character, I usually have a strong, educated, beautiful/handsome, and uniquely flawed person, roaming around in my head. I always can’t help it. Great people intrigue me, so they come out in my works. This happens because I write African Inspired Romance Novels that sends a message to readers about issues concerning young people that I find important. Although my books are a work of fiction, the goal is to get someone to learn something new whenever they read my novels. That is why I carefully choose each character and turn them into fictional people that every real person, especially Africans, can relate to.
Main pic: Sianah Nakila Deshield
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