An Interview With The Tribesman Of The Week

Tobenna is a member of TVO Tribesmen community, a student in the prestigious University of Ibadan and also the latest tribesman of the week.
The tribesmen community is a network where we as creatives, writers, readers, authors and artists share our stories and experiences. In this community,we run a weekly writing contest which is aimed
at building our tribesmen not just to become consistent writers, but to become exceptional writers.The winner of this contest is crowned the tribesman of the week.
I has an awesome moment with Tobenna.

Hello creative! Congratulations on your success as the tribesman of the week. It’s nice meeting you. I am really delighted to have you here

Hello Miss.
Thanks for having me.

I am Oluwalaanumi Blessings, a tribes advocate at thevictoriao.com. Can we meet you please?

My name is Tobenna UMEH
Pseudonym: T.F.C.
I am a tribesman.

Do you mind telling us the meaning of Tobenna?

Tobenna means Beautiful.

If I were to trace this name, in which of the Nigerian states or African countries am I likely to find myself?

Anambra State.
That’s where you will find yourself.

Why do you go by the appellation T.F.C and what does it mean?

Okay.
I was expecting the question.
Actually TFC means Tasty Fried Chicken…
Does it sound unbelievable?

Not really. It’s just a bit weird. I’m not surprised anyway creatives are weird beings. So why Tasty Fried Chicken?

Well, I love chicken especially when it’s fried and tasty! Secondly TFC stands for my initials. I refuse to disclose the exact meanings though.

I knew there was something about it.

You can guess the T stands for Tobenna.

If you were asked to describe Tobenna in five words, what will you say?

In five words?..
Tobenna is a reserved boy.

If I want to bring Tobenna out of his reservations for a while, how do I go about it?

Well, online I’m a little bit less reserved.
Then just allow me become comfortable with you.

Have you always seen yourself as a writer?

No.
I’ve always been a reader. With few scribbles here and there, I once wrote a short story with 13 chapters. But I was never a writer.

13 chapters?
Wow! You’re a sage.

(Laughs)
No one ever read it except my mum though.

You must be a mama’s boy.

Proudly.

For how long have you being writing?

Well, I’ve been writing “intentionally” since October 2019, or thereabout.

Can you describe your journey in the writing space?

It has been a journey full of learning experiences that have added and it’s adding to my growth.
Can yo
Most times I sit back to learn, even without meaning to do so. I’ve done more of learning since I became intentional about writing and a little bit of teaching.
So writing has been a way to learn how to make impact and a way to make impact.

What stimulates/ inspires you to write?

First my thoughts, then my private musings, mostly at midnight. Music too. I recall recently that Post Malone made me write a poem.
Then prompts, I won’t fail to mention that.
Although I find it harder to flow when I’m told what I should write.

If there’s something you could tell your younger self, what would it be?

To start developing himself and his skills, earlier than I did.

What a selfless advice!
What will you like to tell that writer out there who is about to drop his pen?

He should not for whatever reason. Instead he should keep writing and pushing for his voice to be heard. It is not as easy as it sounds though.

Thank you.
Did you ever think you will be nominated for the tribesman of the week?

No!
I felt really intimidated at first. I sent in one or two of my pieces, but I never actually introduced myself on the group because I was intimidated by other people’s work.
Until one day, when someone chatted me up and encouraged me to keep sending in my works. That was when it all started.

Wow! That person was definitely God sent. I’m glad you kept trying. How did you feel when you were announced as the tribesman of the week?

I couldn’t believe it.
I wasn’t even expecting to be nominated at all.
It’s my biggest “win” so far as a writer.
I’m glad it came from us.

Can you describe the tribesmen community briefly?

Well briefly, we’re a tribe of creative people, all lovers of art and literature!

Has the community influenced you in any way?

Yes.
First they made me open a Twitter account because I wanted to be voting for Tribesman of the week. Second, they gave me a platform to learn from thoughts shared, and to share my thoughts freely. Third, they give me books. African literature that I never really paid attention to, I’m now privileged to read. Let me stop here for now.

Thanks for being amazing Tobenna.
I really enjoyed this moment with you.

Thanks Blessings, I had a good time.

I wish you a life full of everything beautiful.

Thank you very much.

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