Dr. Chukwunyere Chukwu is a motivational writer and publisher of many books including bestsellers, Are You Ready? and You Are A Success. He’s also a Chartered Administrator of Chartered Institute of Administration (ACIA, MCIA). He started his education very early. After primary and secondary school, he gained admission into where he obtained B.A Hons in English Literature and B.Sc Marketing from Imo State University, Lagos State University. He later had his Masters and Ph.D. at the same university.
In an interview with ENCOMIUM Weekly, on Saturday, December 20, 2014, Dr Chukwu opened up on so many issues, including the declining state of reading culture among Nigerians, especially the youth, and how writers can join the fight against corruption and terrorism.
What is your take on the reading culture of Nigerians, do you think it is on the decline?
The reading culture is okay. Though because of technological advancement one might think it’s on the decline, I disagree. I don’t believe it has changed. Nigerians are still reading despite the technological advancement.
The world is now a global village. Would you say that has affected the reading habit of Nigerians as most people would rather go online and search for information than going to a library to read?
Technology has been a blessing, because I can stay anywhere to research. It depends on what one wants to read. For example, people still buy and read newspapers, although it might have reduced the sales of newspapers, internet won’t stop people from buying books.
Mention some of the books you have published?
I have 10 books already published, including Are you Ready?, You are a success. These two are my first works, that’s why I don’t joke with them because they have helped me to become what I am today. Others are Songs of wisdom, Aru, Owambe and other drama and motivational books. In these books, I used local dialect to buttress the points I needed to make. By God’s grace, I am working on some other books, which will soon be published.
In writing, what is your motivating factor and where do you draw inspiration from? What inspires you to write a particular book?
I draw inspiration from what happens, where I live, what I see, people I meet, these are the key areas I draw inspiration from.
What are the challenges facing writers in the modern world compared to your counterparts abroad?
It is the issue of piracy, the number one challenge worldwide, especially for Nigerian writers. Enforcing legislation that would check piracy by prosecuting pirates not just having law against it in theory. If the government could do this, it would go a long in checkmating piracy.
How can the government help writers?
By prosecuting those caught in the act of piracy. Unfortunately, some of these pirates have the backing of rich men. So it’s difficult to actually prosecute these people.
Every where you go you see pirated works even works of international writers. This is very bad.
How do you get your books across to Nigerians in the diaspora?
That’s why I published my works in certain languages to cut across all strata, and through my blog and the media, like what you’re doing for me now, it’ll help in creating awareness about my books to your readers home and abroad. My blog’s address is authorchuksblogwordpress.com.
How can writers help curb corruption and terrorism?
The roles of writers in curbing terrorism and corruption cannot be over-emphasized. Writers can help in so many ways, by writing to change the society. They are expected to use their books to talk about morality and preach Nigerian culture to the consciousness of the people; and if you’re very observant, Nigerian culture goes against all these vices such as terrorism and corruption.
The content should help the society and government guard against terrorism. No Nigerian would want to welcome terrorism for any reason. It has not helped us in anyway. Terrorism is a disease. So writers should write without fear or favour.
Let’s talk about freedom of speech. Do you think it is practicable in Nigeria?
Yes, it is. An example is that of the former president, Olusegun Obasanjo, who recently launched his book. He was trying to express his opinion because every Nigerian has right to free speech. However, the fact that we have freedom of speech, we shouldn’t use it to run down our country.
What is your advice for budding writers?
They should seek passion first, instead of money. Take your time to write, appreciate constructive criticisms.