An Interview with Author Tomi Akinyanmi

author-photoYesterday I shared with you my review of A Worthy Legacy by Tomi Akinyanmi. If you missed my review, scroll down to yesterday’s post. I had the opportunity to ask Ms. Akinyanmi a few questions about herself and the book. Before I share that with you let me give you a short synopsis of the book:

 “The Harmattan wind scorches across Nigeria, and an old man lies dying. His community gathers to pay its respects; their haunting songs echoing in the warm twilight. Tomi Akinyanmi, his eldest granddaughter, is present along with the rest of the family, and as she listens to Grandpa’s last words, she feels a resonance deep within her heart. For Grandpa doesn’t talk of regrets, or petty grievances, instead he talks softly about life; how to survive, how to be happy, how to achieve self-respect.” 

And now for my questions of Tomi Akinyanmi. First of all, thank you for this beautiful book and for your time with us today.  I know a few things about you. I know you have a Bachelor’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning, you are a stay at home ‘mum’, you love to write poetry and have won some awards, and now a new book. Tell us more about yourself.

Tomi Akinyanmi: I was born and raised in Nigeria.  I also went to college there and moved to the US in 2002.  Though I have a Bachelors degree in Urban and Regional Planning, writing has and always will be my passion. It is my way of relaxing after a hectic day.  I currently live in Central New Jersey.

From your picture you look to be a young woman. How did you gain an “old man’s wisdom” to write this book?

The book “A Worthy Legacy” originally started as a collection of quotes for personal reference.  As I grew into adulthood and realized that there was more to life than going to school and learning to read and write, I wanted a personal reference for dealing with the issues of life and so I wrote down everything I learnt especially from my dad who I truly respected and I felt had seen a little bit more in life than I had. 

When dad died suddenly in a car accident in 2001 just after I had graduated from college, without a goodbye, there was no closure.  So digging up the old folder of quotes, the writer in me sought closure by writing his last words for him using the words I have written down over the years. 

Dad also loved to write and we would critique each others work.  Sometime ago he read that old folder and gave me more quotes to add in it. This is why part II of “A Worthy Legacy” talks about the writing secret between the old man and his granddaughter.

What is it that you want the readers to take away with them after reading “A Worthy Legacy”?

I would love for everyone who reads “A Worthy Legacy” to learn to live purposefully, attain their dreams and leave `a worthy legacy’ for future generations.  Also talking about `legacy’, I want readers of “A Worthy Legacy” to recognize from the book that the `legacy’ of wisdom and values transferred to a child is more important than the transfer of property or wealth. Wealth without the wisdom and knowledge to use and manage it wisely is bound to be squandered.  “A lack of wisdom is poverty in itself”.

Your book tells me you have a deep love for writing poetry. You are also adept at story telling. Where will the future take you?

When it comes to writing, poetry is indeed my first love.  I also love to encourage people especially young adults into choosing to live the right quality of life and make a difference; so I will continue to write stories that promote that.  As a matter of fact, I have people asking me how to apply the lessons of “A Worthy Legacy” in their everyday life so I am going to be working on that and hopefully, I can publish a book about it soon.

Tomi, thank you so much for stopping by Joyfully Retired. For anyone who is interested in knowing more about this book and the author, you can visit the website here.

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6 Responses to An Interview with Author Tomi Akinyanmi

  1. What a wonderful review! Thanks, and great questions!

  2. stacybuckeye says:

    Insightful and interesting. What a great interview. I have a notebook full of quotes – it’s nice to know I’m not the only one!

  3. Wanda says:

    Wonderful interview! “… the `legacy’ of wisdom and values transferred to a child is more important than the transfer of property or wealth. Interestingly enough, I had a very similar conversation with my son’s grade 9 Social Studies teacher just this past Wednesday.

    ** I also have an award waiting for you, Margot. Stop by when you get a chance to pick it up. 🙂 **

  4. Kathy says:

    Great interview. I especially enjoyed her answer on how she obtained an “old man’s wisdom.”

  5. candice says:

    I think this will now be in my must read stack! Your questions and Tomi’s candor made this a very engaging review. Thank you!

  6. Talk about WISDOM – the transfer of integrity and wisdom (to a child) is more important than the transfer of property and wealth. How True!!

    Tomi has a wonderful mission!

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