Amanda Chenai Makombe is a 27-year-old Zimbabwean writer and sexual health facilitator. She enjoys the depth that comes with exploring your innermost creative being and shares her day-to-day life with us in this short interview.
For Creative Girls: We like to understand childhood experiences that stand out. What was growing up like? Is there any childhood experience that is of great significance in your mind and memory?
Its good to talk about the positives but I guess even the negative have an impact on our lives. I still remember when I was (4) and whenever my parents had an argument, my mum would give me a coloring book and say ‘go color’. Ever since a pen and a book have become my best companions.
What’s life like every day as a writer?
Life as a writer is complicated it is never easy -going. However, If you want to publish your own book you need to be financially fit and in an economy like our its just futile hopes and day to day quest of life opportunities.
What does your routine look like from when you wake up in the morning?
My day to day routine is not fixed, I have a part-time job as a sexual reproductive health facilitator. So I get to think and write in the early morning or late evening and there are moments I forget to even write lol😀. But normally I wake up, do my house-chores, run my errands then get on the desk or I get on the desk early in the morning then later run an errand.
Do share a couple of writing and reporting tips that in your opinion are of utmost importance?
The ‘why should I care?’ aspect is very important therefore I try to put a human face to my stories. Its good that when drawing the reader to my text I try to validate their expectations so that it does not become a cliche. Cliches at times suppress the voice of the reader so it is good to avoid such.
Also, writing is a skill that is perfected when you read and learn from other writers so you should never get comfortable with average.
What value and change do you hope to add to the universe through your work?
Through my work I want people to revisit the things they assume as minors and cause a think, rethink -react effect. I want people to be able to let out their creative being, so we can learn from & share experiences and humanity is one of my values. We are all humans, we make mistakes and we are greedy at times but we still have the ability to love selflessly.
In your perspective and experience, how should an artist be primed for repeated great performance and execution of their skill/art?
Appreciation does the trick best because we can be in the same field, share the same sentiments but definitely, we can never have the same voice. Our voices are shaped by our historical backgrounds, the education level we have reached and our natural skills as an artist. So I feel artists should be appreciated and relevant commentaries whether negative or positive can get the best out of them.
What’s your definition of creativity? And how do you handle creative/writer’s block?
Creativity is a unique blend of personal skill, culture, and diplomacy.
Sometimes I have these moments when I cannot even think but usually exercise or taking hikes any confrontation with nature ignites the creative me.
Can you share a couple of your favorite websites?
www.herzimbabwe.co.zw , www.micheleweldon.com and thewritelife.com
Platforms I love – the Op-ed project and slack
3 women I admire – Tsitsi Dangarembwa, Chimamanda Ngozi and Angelique Kidjo
What are you currently working on?
I am currently working on an Op-ed and a short story – Eroe Bambino meaning ‘child hero’.