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Wednesday, October 7, 2015
Interview of Australian Author/Poet/Doctor Eyitemi Egwuenu by Lorilyn Roberts
I am excited to have Eyitemi Egwuenu as a guest today on the John 3:16 blog. Eyitemi is one of the more interesting people I've met through the John 3:16 Network. A doctor who writes poetry and Christian fantasy is a rare combination. I have started reading Tetelestai and it is truly unique. I hope you enjoy this interview of Eyitemi Egwuenu
Lorilyn: For those who aren't familiar with your work, can
you tell us a little about yourself?
Eyitemi: I am Eyitemi Egwuenu. I live in Sydney,
Australia. I trained as a Medical Doctor, with PhD in Neuroscience. Despite my
scientific training, I consider literature and the arts above all else. There
is none, I believe, greater than a man or woman, gifted with original thoughts
and the power of language to express them.
Lorilyn: How many books have you written?
Eyitemi: I have written three books, with
contributions to a fourth:
Poetry contributions to an anthology, "A
Melody of Stones"
Lorilyn: Can you tell us about your new book?
Eyitemi: "Tetelestai," the novel, is a
re-telling of the Easter story from an entirely new vantage point. It's the
tale of the betrayal, trial, crucifixion and resurrection of Christ from the
perspective of the Holy and Fallen Angels. It chronicles the accounts and the
experiences of the Angels as they watched, and participated in the events of
the Passion. We have accounts in the gospels of how the disciples and other
characters reacted in the unfolding drama of the crucifixion, but we were not
told how the angels perceived events. Where they afraid? Did they have
disagreements on how to conduct themselves during this most trying period in
their lives? These are interesting questions, and TETELESTAI tried to answer
them, using fiction.
Lorilyn: How long have you been writing?
Eyitemi: I dabbled in writing in my university days -
mainly poetry. It was a productive way to pass the time. Well, not that I had a
lot of time on my hands in medical school, but writing poetry provided a medium
of expression for my thoughts and a way of structuring my observation of the
world around me.
Lorilyn: What inspired you to write this book?
Eyitemi: I never set out to write a novel. It started
as a short piece which I had written for a blog post, titled, "Confessions of Lucifer -A Diary". It was a first person
narrative of the Cherub, Lucifer, sharing his perspective; about the way he
perceives the world and how he interacts with humans. That set me thinking
about the broader story of redemption. We all know the stories as recorded in
the gospels, but I wondered if there was more to the story from a supernatural
point of view, – from the perspective of angels, both fallen and holy, and if
they played any role in the way events unfolded.
Lorilyn: What is your favourite time of day to write?
Eyitemi: I have no particular preference either in
location or time when I write. I have written while on the train (there is
something about the scenery whizzing past that encourages the imagination),
while watching television, and even while doing something as mundane as mowing
the lawn. As often as possible, I carry a folded piece of A4 paper in my back
pocket everywhere I go. I scribble a lot - a sentence, a paragraph, dialogues
that pop into my mind from nowhere. Inspiration comes at odd moments, and I try
to be ready.
Lorilyn: What is the hardest thing about writing for you?
Eyitemi: The most difficult thing about writing is
consistency. To maintain a constant writing rhythm is hard and requires a lot
of discipline. Writing is part-time for me. My regular job gets in the way.
It's difficult to find a sufficient length of time that one could devote solely
to writing. That's why I scribble everywhere I go. I have written whole
chapters of my novel while commuting on a bus. I try to make use of the break
time between the duties of my regular job. I am still learning in this regard,
and I believe most writers struggle with this as well – that is, having the
discipline to write anyway, even when you absolutely don’t feel like it. If you
wait for inspiration to come first, you will never write anything.
Bio: Eyitemi Egwuenu is an Australian poet
and novelist. He trained as a medical doctor and obtained a PhD in
cardiovascular neuroscience. He is the author of the collection of poems,The Brimming
Chalice, the collection of poems and essays, Torque, and the novel, Tetelestai.
Visit his author page, and follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Youtube