There is a standing ovation as I walk to the stage. The cheering is deafening but I can still hear the thumping of my heart. I have stood on way too many stages but I can’t seem to shake off my stage fright each time.
The presenter welcomes me with a smile, she too is on her feet. We hug and she offers me a seat and waits for me to settle before she does too.
‘You are welcome.’ She whispers as we wait for the noise to die down.
‘Thank you.’ I whisper back.
Everyone sits and I can tell how their eager faces can’t wait for me to speak.
‘Ms Zulu.’ Sandy the presenter says, the Ms Zulu is coming out with so much weight and it makes me chuckle a little.
‘Call me Olisa.’ I respond.
‘Olisa thank you for gracing us with your amazing presence. I know after your recent book, a lot of media houses want to talk to you but here you are.’
‘And congratulations on the success of the book.’ She quickly adds.
‘Thank you so much Sandy.’ I respond with a smile.
‘Let us get straight into it. I am certain everyone in here has read your book and wants to hear some parts from you.’
I laugh lightly.
‘Tell us about Madu.’
I shift in my seat uncomfortably. I prepared myself for this but for some unknown reason the words have been taken right out of my mouth.’
‘What about him?’
‘Can we say he was the inspiration behind the book?’
‘A whole book? Inspired by him? No.’ I say shaking my head.
‘Then tell us a little about your relationship with him and how you got to the point of writing a whole book that involves him.’
I sigh deeply, look at everyone in the audience and smile. Being a writer is both a blessing and curse, and right now.. whatever I say will determine whether it will be a blessing or curse.