Interview with Kennedy Siboe

What do you read for pleasure?
For leisure (and for knowledge) I read history of the antiquity. Books by such authors as Plutarch, Arrian, Diodorus and Quintus Curtius Rufus. When I am not reading history, I will be reading George Orwell, Charles Dickens, Ngugi Wa Thiong'o, Chinua Achebe among others
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I prefer Kindle. Kobo and Scribd are great too.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
This is my first book. I cannot say I have tried many marketing techniques. Presently, I am only marketing my book on such platforms as Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp.
Describe your desk
Laptop, notebook, pencil and a couple of books.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a little desolate village on the slopes of Mt Elgon in Western Kenya. It was tough growing up. Poverty, violence, ethnic tensions, marginalization and all their concomitant aspects were the norm. My book is actually a narration of my experiences in Mt Elgon and later in Nairobi.
When did you first start writing?
I started writing as a High School student more than 20 years ago, but I never really published any works. Procrastination and loss of manuscripts. Well, I had a number of articles published in magazines and Dailies.
What's the story behind your latest book?
It is the story of my childhood. It is a story of hope amid deprivation and despair; a story my struggle against poverty, ethnic violence, custom and tradition and joblessness.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I guess I considered it was time for world to read my story and there wasn't a more convenient way to do so than indie.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Were it not for Smashwords, it would probably have cost me much more time and thousands of dollars just to get my story out there. Thank you Smashwords for affording me this convenience and saving me thousands of dollars in costs.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy of writing lies in the fact that I am telling my story to the world. Someone somewhere is reading my story and it will inspire hope in that particular reader.
What do your fans mean to you?
The fans mean the world to me. I would not be an author without them.
What are you working on next?
My first book ends when I attain 25 years of age. I am now working on what happens after that.
Who are your favorite authors?
Charles Dickens, George Orwell, Ngugi Wa Thiong'o and Chinua Achebe
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
A new day is a new story. Apart from writing, I work with a bank and I love what I do every day.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Either I will be at the office working or out with my wife and children. When I am away of leave, I will be in Mt Elgon involved in community mobilisation.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I just go Smashwords, Amazon or any other platform skim through and when I chance upon something I fancy reading, I go for it.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
My first ever story to write was a narration of the events I had witnessed in the 1992 ethnic violence in Mt Elgon. It was part of classwork, and I suppose the teacher was so moved that she gave me a perfect score for it.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
“Beautiful Nyakio” by Fredrick Ndung’u and “Captured by Raiders” by Benjamin Wegesa. These two books had a tremendous influence on me. To a greater extent, they instructed me to observe my surroundings. It is from observation that we develop our stories.
How do you approach cover design?
It is the most complex aspect of the book. Very important. I will talk about this much later.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Charles Dicken's 'Great Expectations', Ngugi Wa Thiong'o's 'Petals of Blood', George Orwell's 'Down and Out in Paris and London' and Chinua Achebe's 'Things Fall Apart'.

I just love the style and the fact that they tell a story of conditions of some place at some time.
What is your writing process?
I make notes, develop a sketch, write a draft and then edit it.
Published 2017-06-25.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Long Tussle with Dearth
Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 65,070. Language: Commonwealth English. Published: June 24, 2017. Categories: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
It is not easy growing up in a little village on the slopes of Mt Elgon. It is a marginalized, desolate place devoid of basic government infrastructure. In the eighties and nineties, the region was (and it still is) steeped in myth, custom, tradition and abject poverty. Almost everything was governed by superstitions and curious belief in mythical forces.