Our #WriterSpotlight series is one reason we love Thursdays so much. Today won’t be any different.
Victor’s attraction to words led him to become a writer and spoken word poet even as an Electronic Engineer. Pretty amazing! Enjoy his interview with us.
Hello Oche, please introduce yourself and tell us what you do.
My name is Oche Victor. I am an Electrical/Electronics engineer and a writer/spoken words poet. I was born in Benue State, grew up and went to schools also at Benue and Rivers States. I am an addicted reader and love to spend most of my time just reading various articles. I am also currently writing my first book with the title, “Yellow darkness”.
We know you studied Electronics Engineering, when and how did you discover your love for words?
Oh well I’ve always had an extremely strong attraction to words. Although I clearly discovered this from the days of high school when I would scribble letters for my friends as well as compose text messages for my parents.
At what age did you write your first poem and can you tell us what you did with it?
I wrote my first poem at the very tender age of 15, which I titled “Broken ties”. I remember writing this poem and showing it to my friends and they were all astounded at such level of creativity. I was a shy kid, but I summoned courage and performed the poem at an event and that served as a springboard for where I am today.
Spoken word is becoming a thing in Nigeria but some people still don’t know what it is about, would you be kind enough to explain the concept?
Spoken words is more of an oral art that concentrates on the aesthetics of word play and intonation. Notable speeches such as Martin Luther King’s “I Have a dream” and Booker T. Washington’s “Cast down your buckets” could be regarded as bedrocks for the spoken word community. So basically, spoken words is just putting in emotional attitudes to these written words to make them appealing to listeners.
What’s the worst thing anyone has said about your poem and what was your reaction?
I haven’t really gotten negative comments about any of my poems, probably because I tend to focus on reality and I’m mused by the events that happen to us in our day to day lives.
Different people write for several reasons, fame, fortune, or impact. Can you please tell us why you write?
Well, writing for me is something that flows from the deepest wells of my heart. I write for the love and satisfaction that comes from it, more reason why my poems and articles cut across all spheres of life. Moreover, this is the only medium which I can confidently express myself and like the saying goes, “Where your heart is, there your fortune lies.”
Do you have a writing mentor and why?
I do not really have a writing mentor. I do have a couple of writers I admire. I would say I find myself as my mentor because I like to fall in love with each and every poem I write and I ensure to get better than each previous piece I’ve ever written.
On the average, how many times do you edit a poem before you say it’s ready?
I am the type of human who aspires towards perfection. And as such I could edit my poems as many times as I want to so long as the intended message is not wiped out.
What’s your take on the belief that ‘talk is cheap’?
I do not believe that “talk is cheap”. People just find a way to believe theories that suits their comfort zones.
What’s your ultimate desire as a writer?
My ultimate desire as a writer is that, these words I sketch would sink deep into the wells of hearts and inspire people to find a reason to live. I hope that someday, writers will be a force to be reckoned with as we are totally on a journey to “save the world”.
Have you done anything to improve your writing skill in the past years, please tell us what you have done?
Yes, I have. I have taken out time to read articles of writers who have created a world impact. Learnt a thing or two from how they have successfully branded their craft. I also indulged in a group of writers community as we help kindle our drives collectively.
Is there a poet, writer or spoken word artist you would absolutely love to meet and why?
Oh yes, I would totally love to meet Ezekiel Azonwu, a poet and spoken word performer. I would love to look him in the face and tell him how much I love the way he crafts his words and the energy he exudes each time he performs.
What’s your advice to upcoming poets?
Poetry is an art that stirs imagination, so my advice to upcoming poets is just, reach into the creativity of your soul and allow your mind to take you to places where you’ve never dreamt of.