Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Nothing Comes Close by Tolulope Popoola: Interview



Welcome!  Thanks so much for this opportunity to find out more about you.  J  At what point in your life did you realize you wanted to be a writer?

In 2006, I started getting frustrated with my job as an accountant. I wasn’t fulfilled in my role, even though it paid quite well and the company was a great place to work. I was unhappy and the more I thought about it, I was filled with horror at the idea of working in Accounting for the next forty years of my life. One day, I came across some blogs when I was searching for some information online. I was immediately attracted to the idea of writing a journal online, so I started my own blog. I enjoyed the writing, commenting, meeting other people, and joining a wonderful community of supportive bloggers. Before long, I started looking forward to coming home after a long day at work, and unwinding by writing on my blog.

One day, I wrote a short story and posted it on my blog and it attracted positive comments from the readers. I was surprised and pleased that people thought I could write fiction and they enjoyed my stories. So I started writing some more. The more I wrote, the more I realized I enjoyed it, and I wanted to continue doing it. In 2008, after a lot of soul searching, I finally quit my job and decided to start writing full-time.


How did you start your writing career?

I started by attended a writing class and writing short stories on my blog. Then in 2009, I created an online series, and invited seven other writers to join me in writing a collaborative story. Each of us wrote for a different character, and we would post an update every Friday. It took off and became quite popular with our readers. It was a fun project which I really enjoyed. I loved writing and the interesting comments from readers. The series came to an end in 2011. Then I started working on my novel.


Tell us about your current release.

Nothing Comes Close is the story of two characters, Lola and Wole and how their relationship developed in spite of the challenges they had to face. It’s a story of love, friendship, betrayal, secrets, honesty, regrets and hopefully, a happy ending.


What are your hero and heroine of the story like?

Lola is a confident career girl. She is feisty, she’s intelligent and confident. She has her flaws, but she knows what she wants and she stands for what she believes in. She often sees things in black and white, and she is not afraid to speak her mind or take risks. Wole is mysterious and unpredictable, but he’s also very loyal and he’s got a sense of duty and justice. Together, they make for a very interesting couple.


What inspired you to write this story about the struggle to preserve love in the midst of daunting challenges?

I wanted to write a story that most people can identify with. Relationships are one area of life that every adult has to deal with - we’re either searching for the right person to be with, or trying to make the best of our current status. Love is a universal language, finding love is not always easy and overcoming challenges always makes a good story, so I put those situations together to weave the story.


Are the main characters based on people you know or have known in real life?

No, they are not exactly based on real people, but I know people who have one or two of their traits. I would love having a friend like Lola.


What does your significant other and family think of your writing career?

I’ve been very blessed to have my husband’s support from the start. He was the one that saw that I was miserable as an accountant and happy as a writer, so he encouraged me to quit my job to write full time. I remember my friends too were supportive, if a bit surprised. My dad wasn’t too thrilled at first, but after I had some stories published, he perked up considerably and now he’s a big fan J.


Do you have critique partners or beta readers?

Yes I do. They were very honest with what they felt were the strengths and weaknesses of the story. Their feedback really helped me to improve the weak areas of my earlier drafts.


What is the hardest part of writing your books?

Writing the novel was a learning experience, as I’m sure writing any book will be. I’m still a new writer so I’m learning how to do it better. The main challenge was the process of going through several drafts and rewrites, but it was necessary to make the prose better.


What do you think makes a good story?

Interesting characters that readers can identify with. When I’m reading, I have to care about the people in the story; otherwise no matter what happens to them, I won’t be moved.


Plotter or Pantser? Why?

I’m a plotter. I often have an outline and a list of characters mapped out before I start writing a long story. I have to do this before I start otherwise I would get stuck somewhere down the line. Sometimes, though the story can take a new direction from where I originally planned, so I still have to be flexible. When I’m writing short stories or flash fiction, I don’t plot as much.


Where do you dream of traveling to and why?

I would really love to visit Kuala Lumpur. I’ve heard a lot about the city, the great sights, the yummy food and the friendly people.


Tolulope Popoola is a writer, blogger and voracious reader. She was born in Lagos, Nigeria. She moved to England for her university education where she studied BA Accounting and Business Economics and a Masters in Finance and Investment. But she never lost her love for reading, and as time went on, she began to wish for a different career path. She started writing a blog in 2006, which rekindled her love for writing and telling stories. She took a few writing classes, created an online fiction series called In My Dreams It Was Simpler and started writing both fiction and non-fiction for magazines. In 2008, she left Accounting to concentrate on writing full-time. She writes short stories, flash fiction, and articles for many print and online magazines. Nothing Comes Close is her first novel. Tolulope lives in London with her husband and daughter.


Confident, sassy, career girl, Lola meets cool, handsome, unpredictable hunk, Wole at a party in London. He pushes all the right buttons for her, and sparks fly. Wole is also irresistibly drawn to Lola, and before long, they get together in a wonderful romance. But Wole is not all that he seems, and he is holding back some dark secrets. Things start to unravel when Wole’s past begins to catch up with him and Lola has to decide if Wole is worth the trouble that threatens to overwhelm her. Find out in this captivating book if their love will overcome the trials of a murder investigation, an arrest, a meddling relative and a trip halfway across the world, or whether they both give up and go their separate ways.

To download the ebook: 
Amazon Kindle US - Amazon Kindle UK -  Amazon Europe (Germany,  FranceItalySpain)
To buy the paperback 



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This book is available in .mobi, ePub, or PDF format.

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