Today at Self-Publishing Africa (SPA) we are joined by Isaac Tlaka (IT) a Isaac Tlaka is a full time writer. He was born and raised in Limpopo Province South Africa. He began school at Hlabje Primary School and progressed with his secondary education at Ponti Secondary School, where he completed Grade 10 and went to Matshumane Secondary School, where he acquired his Grade 12.
(SPA) Welcome Isaac, and thank you for spending time with use at Self-Publishing Africa.
(IT) Thanks a lot.
(SPA) Can you start by giving our followers a brief background of yourself and where you are coming from?
(IT) I discovered myself artistically when I began writing poetry and pieces of self expression. I was also chosen as a hip hop commentator on SK FM, which is community Radio Station. The name of the show was Trailblazer, on which I frequently shared my insight regarding Hip Hop Culture.
(SPA) Where do you get your ideas from?
(IT) I get my ideas from what I observe from the society. Even my personal experiences contribute to my writing.
(SPA) Why do you write?
(IT) I write to spread positive message, to motivate and plant hope to each and every spiritually fractured one. In my writing I try by all means to positively change people’s attitude towards life.
(SPA) What do you find most appealing about your chosen genre?
(IT) Most of the people are fond of reading fiction.
(SPA) How do you deal with bad reviews, rejection and criticism?
(IT) Haha… those are the things that grows me as a writer. The more I get rejected and criticized is the more I improve my writing.
(SPA) Isaac, you surely have developed in your writing. Have you published yet? What are you busy with now in terms of writing?
(IT) I have published my short inspirational novel titled, The Spirit of the Optimist. And I have finished writing a full length novel, which I will surely publish it as my second book. At the moment I am busy writing my third novel.
(SPA) What do you find difficult about book writing?
(IT) The only thing I find difficult about book writing is plotting the story.
(SPA) What is your opinion on self-publishing vs traditional publishing?
(IT) On self-publishing diligence is required in order to make your book sell. Traditional publishers have their way of selling your book and leave you with a chance to write another book without your focus divided. Therefore, I find traditional publishing better
(SPA) What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
(IT) I would like to advice aspiring writers to read a lot. They don’t have to work hard, trying to sound like these successful authors. I encourage them to be original and use their own voices.
(SPA) If you could go back in time 12 months, what would you advise yourself?
(IT) Writing is never a waste of time. Write, write and write.
(SPA) Who is your favourite author and why?
(IT) Ayi Kwei Armah remains my favourite author. I like the manner in which he unfolds his stories. He is good at touching social issues. My fist is always up for his two early novels titled, The Beautyful Ones Are Not Yet Born and Fragments.
(SPA) Do you do book reviews? What type of books do you review?
(IT) No, not yet.
(SPA) Which email lists are you subscribed to?
(SPA) How do you interact with other authors? Are you a member of a book club?
(IT) Through Facebook and Whattsap. No, I am not member of any book club.
(SPA) What types of books do you normally recommend to your friends?
(IT) General fiction.
(SPA) What do you like to do when you’re not writing? Full-time job, pets, hobbies?
(IT) I visit high schools and deliver motivation to students. I also help students who are interested to writing novels on how to plot them. One of my hobbies is to saunter around the nearest river.
(SPA) Let’s talk about Isaac the man! Give us a bit of your social and family life.
(IT) If I’m not writing I spent most of my time reading and researching about what I write about. Haha… I’m still living under my parents’ roof.
(SPA) Any final word for our followers?
(IT) Chase your dreams and live your life to the fullest. Forget not life without hope is equated with death in disguise.
(SPA) Many thanks for this interview, Isaac. Good luck with your writing.
(IT) Let me say thanks to you for hosting me. I’m humbled.
Isaac Tlaka Links and Contacts