I’ve always known I would be a writer. I hadn’t the faintest idea what I would write about. I just knew, had this gut feeling that I would be a writer. I wrote my first story in Primary 3. I remember making a hardcover book by tearing my exercise book and stitching the papers with a needle and thread – like my mother stitched our school uniforms – to make a book. Then I wrote my story in it. I can’t remember now what the story was all about. But I remember my excitement, my sense of fulfillment as only a little girl like me could feel when I showed my parents the story and they were very proud. My father kept it saying it might be published one day.
Then as I grew up, I forgot all about writing, well not entirely, just wasn’t serious about it. Other things occupied my mind- passing my exams, getting admission into the university, graduating, NYSC, Master’s degree and like every Nigerian graduate, getting a job.
I did all of these things except getting a job.
I tried hard to be a nine to five working class citizen. No way. I tried the connections I had or thought I had. For where? During that period, I tried to write again but since I hadn’t written anything for years, it was difficult. I suffered through several bouts of writers’ block. Nothing seemed to inspire me. At a point, I stopped trying at all…
… until it dawned on me that I would likely waste my whole life searching for a job. So I decided to try again. Step by step, bit by bit, my letters turned into words. Then my words turned into sentences, my sentences turned into a paragraph and… yay! I could write again. I started with screenwriting for Nollywood. As an upcoming screenwriter, it was very difficult to get a producer to buy my script or commission a script. In a year, I would be commissioned one or two scripts only. Sometimes, I wouldn’t receive any commission at all.
I was so discouraged I could have stopped. I couldn’t. That giddy feeling I had as a little girl with my first story came flooding back when I wrote my first screenplay. I didn’t want to let it go. But I longed for a platform where I could share my creativity and hence this category, Screenwriting.
So guys, here’s the platform to talk about our screenwriting according to Nollywood, not just the oyinbo own. Every professional screenwriter in Nollywood got their skills from following the Hollywood standards. For Nollywood, it’s a different story. If you want to know why, then do stay back, relax as the information unfolds. And hey, screenwriters can join and tell us their experiences. It will be educative and fun. Cheers!!!