'What keeps me coming back mostly is the scrutiny.' #WriterPrompt Winner: A mini-interview with Gabriel G Odigiri.

I was in a fiery lit room. Between sturdily latched elevated steel doors and a heavily smoked inland.

I stomped over a pavement. Red patches on the floor. The lower lane was covered with hibernated debris and the ridges were whitewashed like a faded blue blouse.

I was taunted by the flickering red lights and the strong smell of sulphur and nitrous oxide in the room.

I was quite drowsy and faltered into the shades of the deeming frame of the inner square room.

I heard indistinct howling from the inner square room that stretched to the main room. I presumed, it was the blizzard approaching from north to our inland.

For a moment I thought of Mount Rio. At the death of winter and the eve of summer. A breath of departed cold wind. Waxing sun. Autumn birds tormenting the eaves of our house. The healing power of the matutinal moon.

A rising flame pulled me into the frame. Where the howling sounded more like a ghost's whisper in the wind.

I nudged myself back up, after I flopped on the concrete floor hailing to the sound of distant footfalls.

I swirled right. Managed to balance my weight on the twirl. Managed to hide away from burgeoning shadows. Where surreally, broken bricks reels beneath from where I stood.

I was in a fiery lit room, when a thousand old shackles broke. Never did I imagine, I walked miles at the dead of the sun on a deserted bridge. I was yet to cross.

Gab is one of the most regular participants of #WriterPrompt and we've enjoyed seeing his writing evolve and his unique literary visions.


You have been one of the most committed members of #WriterPrompt. What keeps you coming back?

GAB: #WriterPrompt, is a platform that gives young aspiring African writers the opportunity to showcase their talent and hone their writing skills, that is certain. For me, it gives me the opportunity to meet young African writers like myself. Get to see their style of writing and learn from them. Also, to see if indeed I suffice as a writer. What keeps me coming back mostly is the scrutiny. I learn every time I post 200 word flash fiction on the platform.

What are some of your writing goals?

GAB: Writing is a thing I have come to love so much. And seem to be a bit good at. I have always loved stories and always wanted to tell my stories. I had a mystical childhood. I love to write about my childhood. I am a victim of bullying. I always expressed my pain through writing. As you know, I am fascinated by Post-Apocalyptic stories. I wonder how it would be in Africa. I aim to write stories about the past dictatorial Nigerian regime, the insurgency in Northeastern Nigeria, Niger Delta militancy etc. In a long run, I aim to delve into screenwriting, into a genre, most writers in this part of the world shy away from.

What are you currently reading?   

GAB: I am currently reading Wilkie Collins’ The Woman in White.

Gab G Odigiri is a young Nigerian writer and Philosophy graduate from Niger Delta University. He was exposed to works by Chinua Achebe, Gabriel Okara, Ben Okri, Elechi Amadi, Camera Laye, Ken Saro-Wiwa from an early age because of his late father’s love for African literature. Gab is very fascinated by the works of Dan Brown and H.P. Lovecraft. He cites his influences in African literature as Chinua Achebe, Ben Okri, Ngugi Wa Thiong’o and Helon Habila. Gab lives with his hard-working mother in Nigeria’s capital and hopes to become a well-known writer one day. He has several unpublished pieces of short fiction.