Readers of #IndustryTalk I started this blog to help aspiring artist learn the steps needed in order to grow as artist and as people. That is why when Biodun messaged me asking if his book qualified would I consider it; I said of course. Writing is an art, shoot I’m writing right now. Writers create the scripts for the films and tv shows we all enjoy and love so much. I asked Mr. Abudu to send me details on his book and I must say after reading only four chapters of ‘Tales of My Skin’ I am floored. In the first four chapters we delve into Abudu’s life growing up in both the States as well as Nigeria. His first love which happened to be an abusive one, as well as the way he saw himself. As an artist I think we are very critical of our work and of ourselves. I thought I should interview him for those of you artist who have a bit too much going on in your personal lives as that can block you from your blessings. Yes I said blessings. Right now I’m at the computer typing, listening to Yolanda Adams ‘The Battle is The Lord’s’. Readers I lost a dear friend of mines a few days ago (maybe a few weeks from this article’s publishing date). However he struggled with drugs, self-worth, and abuse with his partner. He was always the person to cheer you up if you were down, and smiling for no reason at all. So I am hoping that if you read this book you will realize how much you are worth. We all have a purpose, whether you are spiritual/religious or not. We all have a purpose!
R|A: Biodun first I must applaud you on your bravery. It takes a lot for one to open themselves up completely. I must ask what made you decide to write ‘Tales of My Skin’ and would you consider this to be somewhat of a memoir of your early life?
B|A: Thank you so much. 'Tales of My Skin' is not all about my story but also someone I used to know. I wouldn't call it a memoir necessarily but letters or chapters for people to learn from our story.
R|A: What advice would you give people who are in an abusive relationship? Did you feel like what your first love was doing was wrong or just something natural?
B|A: It's always easy for most of us say to someone in an abusive relationship to leave. The person who stays in an abusive relationship has fears, doubts and has lost track of their self worth that's why they can't move. It's a great process to start by speaking to someone who would encourage them and give them resources to have strength and courage to leave and feel they can survive. It was totally wrong and I can't blame the person because for me it stemmed from abusive situations I had from my dad and back then I accepted it. So it adds to reasons why it became normal at that moment though it was wrong.
R|A: At what point in your life did you realize you deserve better and could be better?
B|A: It took a long while for me to tell myself that I could be better and deserved better . No one on this earth’s soil is without mistakes and is perfect. The moment I started to read more and watch the not so popular TV shows that spoke about certain neglected issues is when I started to wake up telling myself I could be better.
R|A: Will you be writing more in the future? Is there a part two to ‘Tales of My Skin’?
B|A: Oh definitely! I have extremely wild thoughts and plan to write my first fictional novel soon. My second novel is in the editing process. I’m so excited about it actually. I cried a couple of times when I was writing it because it was touching on so many things I could relate to. I’m considering writing a part two of Tales of My Skin just weighing options that's best for me.
R|A: What is your advice on sex or abstaining from sex?
B|A: Sex hmm! this is one topic that commands the immediate attention of so many people. So many people hardly ever mention the word “abstain” talk less of even giving actions to dedicate to abstaining. I do advise to resist temptation which getting off the online apps which are masked for dating but are free access to sex. Who wants to roam professional places or fun gatherings being known as that one person everyone has had a taste of ?
R|A: How do you want your readers to view you after this? In your book you mentioned the assets you are praised for or found sexy for, but what do you praise yourself for? And what qualities do you think are sexy about you? (Keep in mind by sexy I mean your brain, or tea on a rainy day in pajamas. Just what makes you feel most comfortable in your skin?)
B|A: I can say what I want my readers to view me as but people will still have their own personal view. I do hope they view me as someone touching on topics they recognize with but aren't comfortable talking about. I am bold for writing on things that are hidden in the dark and patted on the head only to grow into an ugly mold. I praise myself for being able to grow and learn every season. To be able to speak my mind on the truth and not really care what thousands that don't agree have to say is what I call sexy and is what makes me comfortable in my skin
R|A: America has a one sided picture of LGBT life in Africa, I have several out friends in South Africa and know a bit of the life there. However what would you say Nigeria is like? Is there a gay culture, are people accepting to some degree? What would you change?
B|A: I know there is community that is private out there for safety reasons. People with open minds and are educated are accepting to a degree. The ones that have their neck deep in religious ways of life and have taken special high positions in heaven next to God will tell you what is wrong because they know it all. That's all I will say concerning this.
R|A: So I’ve lived in New York City as well and dating there is a bit different I would say. We date more, and we date often, and if we are lucky during cuffing season we won’t have to date so much. What’s your advice on dating for people in the LGBT community, young and older?
B|A: There is still a long way to go. Recently gay marriages were accepted all over the U.S. That's great but we must not forget many of us are not even close to dating so only like 5 percent of the LGBT community will actually get married in this generation. I think people have gotten comfortable behind the computer screens and don't know how to approach each other physically when they see a potential person to date. In clubs most lean on the walls and are too cute to loosen up and have a conversation. Sex is the priority for most and if that is not taken down, there is no dating really. We need to get rid of the list of no’s, stop expecting too much on the first day. Communication is everything and making it work and not giving up over little arguments. Being real is the key, if you can not be silly like you are with your friends then move on, don't force it because the person looks good.
R|A: What helped you survive all of this? Who was a pioneering force to give you guidance throughout your adolescence?
B|A: No one really just stories I have read during that time. A few times to cry alone and few times to take walks and listening to songs with strong meaningful lyrics helped me.
R|A: What advice would you say you received that has helped you or changed you in a positive way?
B|A: I was told from a friend that sometimes when you plan to go far in life you may have to plan to go alone.
About the Author
Biodun Abudu was born in Rhode Island, but comes from a Nigerian background. When he is not writing, he works as a model, choreographer,actor and fashion designer. In 2011, he graduated with an. A.S. degree in Fashion Design and a B.A. in Merchandising Management with an emphasis on Fashion Merchandising.
Website - www.BiodunAbudu.com
Blog - blog.BiodunAbudu.com