This week, we have come across a unique blog centered on books! We love books at ConnectNigeria.com, and the icing on the cake is that this blog focuses on exclusive interviews with Nigerian authors. There is also an online bookstore where you can purchase books from the interviewed authors and others. Below, ChukzBook Blog has done an interesting interview with Opeyemi Philips, the author of ‘The “Obama” in You!’.
Chukzbook Exclusive Interview with Opeyemi Philips
Everyone wants to get the best out of life—we all want to be successful, we have childhood fantasies and dreams that we want to fulfill, but looking back today, it’s quite clear that we are not “there” yet!
Does this that mean that most of the stuff we brew in our minds are just reveries that are unfounded in the Twenty-first century world?
The “OBAMA” in You! Answers this question brilliantly and exposes some ignored formulas President Barack Obama used to land himself a seat in the White House against all odds. It tracks the journey that made an unlikely candidate and connects it with every dream or goal that you may have in life; it leads you carefully on the path of making your fantasies become a reality. It helps bring out the “OBAMA” in you—the Grammy awards, the bestsellers, the Nobel Prize winner, and why not, the president in you!
Chukzbook stores: Where did you get the inspiration to write The “OBAMA” in You?
Opeyemi Philips: It was after the historic election that led Senator Barack Hussein Obama, a barely known black politician in the United States, to the White House. He was young, adjudged politically inexperienced, had no money and a lot of pundits and experts thought he wasn’t going to win the race. But somehow, he aced all those obstacles and continued to wax stronger until he became president! After the election, I just couldn’t gloss over what just happened! A guy relatively known to the electorate (a poll indicated that at some point) is now the president? I thought that was huge. I began to ruminate over the events and wanted to know how Obama achieved this feat. After reading stacks of books, materials on the election, and watching YouTube videos of the campaign all over again, I came up with a five-letter acrostic that summed up his strategies and analyzed it deeply in my book. This spells “OBAMA” and stands for Optimism, Boldness, Attitude, Move and Accomplish.
Chukzbook stores: What sets The “OBAMA” in You! apart from other books in the same genre?
Opeyemi Philips: The “OBAMA” in You! sets out with a simple task: to explore the concept of fantasy – the embryonic stage of every dream or goal, and see whether it’s worth it harboring. Having established that many dreams initially appear like fantasy, the book practically shows you how you can make your fantasies become a reality, using President Obama’s unambiguous principles. In other words, it shows you how to jump out from the Hall of Fantasy to the Hall of Fame! It is not short of inspirational messages, but also dwells on the importance of hard work and strategic planning. Again, because I’m also a writer of fiction and other styles of writing, the book was presented in a narrative and conversational style while coated with a dose of humor that the reader would enjoy, hopefully!
Chukzbook stores: As an author, what are the keys to your success that led to The “OBAMA” in You! getting out to the public?
Opeyemi Philips: Sincerely, I wouldn’t say that I have perfectly done a good job of getting The “OBAMA” in You! out there. If I did I probably would have a lot of cash in the bank for my troubles! I think every writer would want their books to be read. I wanted my book to be read all over the world, and that informed the painstaking steps I took to ensure that the book came out well and also available worldwide. Since I was self-publishing, I had to ensure the quality of the book, content and design wise, was top-notch. I engaged the services of a self-publishing outfit to put the book in online channels like Amazon, Barnes and Noble, to mention a few. I had it in e-book formats for Kindle users and other hand-held devices. I sent out press releases, asked for reviews, got blurbs from reputable authors and employed social media marketing (Facebook and other channels). I also used the launch of the book to create publicity and had the book in book stores and also did some direct marketing. However, I wouldn’t say I’m totally satisfied. I believe I could have done much better, especially with social media marketing and I’m trying to ensure that I do that well enough for my next title.
Chukzbook stores: As an author, what is your writing process? How long did it take you to start and finish The “OBAMA” in You!?
Opeyemi Philips: I would have loved to tell you that my writing process was this… and that… But while writing my book, I didn’t follow any particular writing process. Yes, it’s good to write every morning as you are still fresh with the energy allotted to a new day, and I do that a lot. But there are times when I also write in the afternoon and at night. I think the key thing is prepping well for your theme— what you are writing on, whether it’s fiction or nonfiction. I wrote the first draft of my book in two months but I kept changing it in the course of almost two years while sorting out other publishing exigencies. Now, there’s an advantage to spending more time on your manuscript. The more time you spend (at least that works for me), the more incisive the perspective you get. However, I’m not recommending that you spend a lot of time tweaking your manuscript though because it will never be perfect! A lot of writers also use that to procrastinate! However, have an outline and spend time prepping on the topics you want to write on and you won’t have problem while penning it down. It’s all about finding out what works for you.
Chukzbook stores: What is next for Opeyemi Philips (a.k.a. O.P. Philips)?
Opeyemi Philips: I have a couple of book projects in my sleeves including a novel, but I’ll talk about my next nonfiction book entitled, “The Soccer Side of Life: amazing lessons world’s most popular sport teaches about life.” This book considers what is fundamental for success in soccer and how it could also be instructive for success in every sphere of the human endeavor. The scope of this book will not only entail narratives from me based on my experiences from my days playing soccer as an amateur, or as a sports journalist and scholar of sport and personal development, I’m drawing knowledge from stakeholders in the game and other relevant fields to support my conclusions: top soccer players, coaches, sport teachers and scientists, pundits, successful entrepreneurs, top corporate executives, psychologists and relevant research organizations for data. The Soccer Side of Life will be out by the last quarter of the year and it is one project that I’m really excited about. The book’s website, www.thesoccersideoflife.com will soon be up where there will be on-going conversations on the book. Watch out for that!
About the Author: Opeyemi Philips is a versatile freelance writer (Film, Television, Magazine, fiction and nonfiction) and anentrepreneur. He’s helped develop international film co-production projects and independent production houses, both home and abroad. As a voice talent, he has recorded scores of TV commercials, radio jingles, documentary narrations and audiobooks. He has also worked as a volunteer for global educational projects aimed at providing educational opportunities for indigent students and also campaigned against the dreaded scourge of HIV/AIDS. He’s also a public speaker and a crusader against injustice. He lives in Lagos, Nigeria.
You can find more interviews and blogs from ChukzBook Blog at: http://chukzbook.com/