Children author, Mariatu Kargbo
Hello everyone. I’m so excited to jump into this long awaited interview with this amazing children book author I just met. Her children books are really illustrative and fun to read and the best part of it is that, adults can also read them. While most of us are conversant with Nigerian children books, it would be nice to try a Sierra Leone Author for a change.
Join me and get to know more about one of Sierra Leone’s children book authors.
Q: Hello Ms. Mariatu Kargbo , Esq
A: Hi Yinka!
I’m so glad you decided to honor my invite for an author’s interview
Of course it was a pleasure
Alright, let’s move right into the main course of the day. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Ms. Mariatu Kargbo Esq. I was born in Freetown Sierra Leone on June 4, ,1980. I love writing children’s books. I’m an author, lawyer and a freelance journalist. I have four children with my husband.
This so great🥺. A lawyer, freelance journalist, author and most importantly a mother. Phew! so amazing.
Thanks😂. I really love what I do.
Oh I can tell. Now, when did you know you wanted to pursue writing as more than a hobby?
I knew I wanted to pursue writting as a hobby at about age 15. I was into crime fiction and romance novels. However, I went on to pursue a law career before completing my first book, “Mr. Byrd’s Bird” by Mariatu Kargbo.
Wow, that’s a really long time. So if you started with crime fiction and romance, what made you choose children books over romance and crime fiction?
I wanted something really interesting for children before I wrote for adults. I would be publishing my first adult book in about a year, “The Swift Tale of Blue Lion”.
Hmmm. That’s so thoughtful of you. It must have been hard making a decision like this.
Well, not really.
Well we can’t wait for your first adult book to hit the market soon.
Thank you. I can’t wait either.
It would be a sad thing on my part if I kept my readers in the dark. So before moving on, I would like you to list all your published children books.
Alright. I’ve published four children books. My first book is the “Mr Byrd’s bird” followed by the “the three themne titi girls”. After that I published “ripped sunset” and my latest book is the “the horse against the race” by Mariatu Kargbo.
I see a pun in the title of your first book. I must commend you for that.
Ms. Mariatu Kargbo, do you mind telling us about your latest book and how the title came about?
My latest children’s book titled, “The Horse Against The Race,” is about twenty horses racing through mideviel park for the title of “Horse Of The Year Award”.
A children book about horses? Well that’s rare but splendid. I bet something must have inspired you to write this book.
Certainly. I love England and all things British and the story is based in England. The English life inspired me to write such a brilliant story and book.
Then I guess England was a good inspiration after all.
What’s the three themne titi girls about? It seems like an interesting African story.
“The Three Themne Titi Girls” by Mariatu Kargbo is about three Themne women ravishing through Mr. Cobra Snake’s bushes for berries and fruits. It’s an interesting story about property ownership and food consumption and also, about being wise to save during lean times.
From what you’ve just mentioned I’m more than eager to read the book. So from the title, Is Themne Titi an actual tribe in Sierra Leone or it’s just fictional?
Yes, Temne or Themne is an actual African tribe in West Africa, Sierra Leone.
Wow, then this book must be an eye opener because I never knew about this tribe till now.
No doubt, It is an eye opener for anyone who read it.
Ms Mariatu Kargbo, what’s your favorite part of the writing process?
My favorite part of the writting process is coming up with fictional characters and bringing them all to life. The calling to be bold in the landscape of the characters plus, the bringing of awareness to the characters and of course, the audience.
That’s nice. If you could bring a character to life in any of your books who would that be?
I would bring back “The Three Themne Titi Girls“. It was fun to write and my audience who have read the book, really loved it and they have given it excellent reviews.
What’s a good book without excellent reviews?😌 We know authors must have faced challenges in marketing their books. How did you handle yours?
I have faced many challenges while marketing my book but I am on Amazon and on other book sellers whole sellers sites. I have also tackled the issue with my own publishing house, Apple Grass Book Publishing House, and I’ve used several blogs on Facebook. For example, I’ve marketed my books on “It’s My Book Blog,” and “It’s A Book Blog”.
So basically, all your books are available on amazon at the moment?
Yes, but some are with limited availability like “Mr. Byrd’s Bird” and “Three Themne Titi Girls“
Oh wow. Then i guess it’s left to the early birds.
Of all your books which would you recommend for anyone who wants to read your book for the first time?
I would recommend The Three Themne Titi Girls it is based in Africa and it’s also a lovely time story and a beautiful read for both adults and children.
Fantastic! Well the readers are excited to know more about your first adult book. Ms. Mariatu Kargbo, can you tell us a thing or two we should be expecting from it?
The Swift Tale of Blue Lion is a science fiction based on the future of wars and a family tale which involves bringing the Red Lion to justice through time portals.
So it’s a crime fiction?
Yes, it’s a crime science fiction book based on future years.
Great. As an author of 4 books what do you have to say to an aspiring author? Because I know in the author or wold I say writers world it isn’t all that bliss.
Yes, you’re right it isn’t all that bliss but then. I say to aspiring writer’s to keep a good computer like Dell. Saving drafts during the writing process is important.
Of course😂. I can’t imagine anyone loosing pages of a book they’re almost done with. That would be disastrous.
Exactly my point Yinka.
No need to brag, but Ms. Mariatu Kargbo is not just a great author but also, a prolific writer who has contributed to one of Sierra Leone’s magazines.
Thank you again😂. It was an honor to contribute to the scars of survival magazine.
I totally agree with you on a that. Finally, would you advise anyone to take up writing professionally?
Of course if you love writing then why not take it up professionally? Even though writing professionallly can be challenging, I would suggest writing and connecting with other book authors and also, attending book seminars.
Lovely advice Ms Mariatu Kargbo . Thank you so much for your time.
Thank you too. Yinka