- ‘If you want to be successful as a writer, pursue excellence’ – Eazy
- ‘Turn your God-given talents to money-spinners’ – Nura Ahmed
- ‘Write for God and humanity’ – Richard Ali | #WednesdayWritersWorld
- ‘Meeting Soyinka was a life-changing experience’ – Mujahyd Ameen Lilo | #WednesdayWritersWorld
- ‘To be successful, writers need to treat writing as a profession’ – Vincent de Paul
- Focus, consistency and mastery are ingredients of a successful writer – Aswagaawy
Nura Ahmad, an award-winning author who co-writes the famous Dadin Kowa Hausa series believes that the digital world has opened up big vistas for writers to make money
Hello, you are on to #WednesdayWritersWorld on Memorila and we are pleased to have you here. Please may we meet you?
I’m Nura Ahmad. Born and brought up at Kofar Nasarawa, Kano Municipal Local Government, Kano state and married with children. I bagged my BSc. Botany at Bayero University, Kano. My hobbies include reading, writing, travelling, watching nature and conservation.
Why do you write?
To satiate that urge, which pinch a writer to write and indeed to educate, enlighten and entertain.
What’s your writing genre?
Prose, drama and poetry. I tried my hands in all.
What inspires your writing?
Almost everything. Inspiration just comes and I write. Initially it’s death, then life then the others. My first two poems were about death, then life.
Where have your works been published? And how many contests have you won lately?
My works have been published nationally and internationally, in the USA, UK, Iceland, etc. The latest contest I won was in 2016 where the Hausa TV series that I co-wrote clinched The AMVC AWARD of the Best Indigenous TV Series. My poems also were selected as poems of the week at various online poetry pages.
What inspired your first published work?
As mentioned earlier, it’s death.
Describe your writing style in one word?
I can’t say, but people comment on the “originality”.
What writing styles are easy for you to pull off?
Actually my style varies with time, space and mood.
Aside from being a writer what other career would you settle for?
If you were to pick any writer from among your Facebook friends or writing groups whose works inspire you the most, who would it be?
What has been the best part of your writing journey?
It was when I took part in writing poetry for peace in the world (anti-war poems) and the poems to raise fund for war torn children of Afghanistan. This team of poets was led by an Icelander Birghitta Jondestir. Two anthologies were published, World Healing Book and The Book of Hope by authors from different parts of the world.
What do you think is the best way for writers of this time to make money?
Opportunities are quite available these days; there are online journals, online televisions (markets for screenwriters), the print media, the film industry and lots more are available for them to try their hands.
In five years time, what do you think would become of Nigerian writers and the demand for their works?
Like I said opportunities are always on the increase in this digital world. I foresaw a very bright future for Nigerian writers.
If you were to be in a gathering where you are to address first-time writers/ authors who want to profit from their writings, what would you say to them?
Read always, keep writing, create your voice in what you write and face the challenge tirelessly. Be versatile! Never give up!
As a former civil servant who resigned to pursue his dreams in the literary world, what inspired your decision?
I like to teach, which I did before. But I liked writing more. I was challenged to write a screenplay and as a first timer then. I resigned my work to take up the challenge, which led to the success of the 2016 AMVC AWARD. The challenge was actually the inspiration that led to my resignation.
Nura Ahmad (right) and a colleague analysing Kannywood on Arewa24 studio
So far, what hurdles have you surmounted and when you look back, will you say you’ve made the best decision?
A number of huddles, first the family; where my wife and children were not given adequate time for their happiness. Taking up a new job as a screenwriter and the demands created by the job; having sleepless nights, and so on. Alhamdulillah, all of these have been overcome.
Every year, higher institutions churn out graduates who come to meet an already congested labour market, what career paths will you advice these soon-to-be graduates to take?
Our mistakes are – not knowing ourselves. We don’t ask ourselves; “What other talents do we have apart from what we are doing at present?” Each of us needs to know this. When you pinpoint such God given talent(s), try them and turn them into money sourcing talents. They should consider their certificates or their knowledge as a tool that will lighten their path in turning such talent into a business they should rely on.
Please tell us more about the AMVC award. What story did you write and what is the message behind it?
AMVC is the Africa Magic Viewers Award Choice that holds every year as regards African movies. Sorry I forgot to write that I’m a bilingual writer, writing in English and Hausa. What I’m part of the writing is the famous “Dadin Kowa” TV series of Arewa 24 Satellite TV. The story is about pros and cons of our everyday life. But the main theme is how youth are used in violence of both political and religious.
I am also part of the writing team of the Arewa 24’s Blockbuster movie series “Kwana Casa’in”, which is reigning now and I believe if it enters the AMVC Award, will clinch the award this year. The theme of Kwana Casa’in is corruption in politics and government.
Thank you for your time…
You’re always welcomed.