Zimbabwe: Ziramba Writes Romantic Novel

Writing is a fun and thought-provoking creative process which takes time due to the research required to validate all the elements of the story and make them believable, says book publisher and author Patience Ziramba. Having written a novel titled Sweet Purple Sight, which is set to be launched and published next Wednesday, the Bulawayo-based author acknowledges that though her creative writing process was intense, she just had to get her story straight, taking note of the fact that in the end, all problems arising from the story should be resolved, while all loose ends are tied to give a satisfactory ending.

Sweet Purple Sight is a tale of love, passion, and compatibility of two deep souls, Tinodanana and Tadiwa. Their day one tags along feelings of profound connection in what starts off as an accident. The connection between them releases a breath of meaning to life, not only in their personal spaces, but everything around them takes a positive spin until one dark day, an unaware soul deals with an acute blow; slow, sudden and final -- a loner, left only with purple thoughts and sweet memories.

"Tinodanana and Tadiwa fall in love in what starts off as an accident. Tadiwa is taken aback by the beauty that Tinodanana exudes, and she is also swept away by Tadiwa's oozing handsomeness. Theirs is an exciting story of two perfectly created human beings. She learns of the gentleman traits displayed by him, as all her previous boyfriends had never been anything close to this. They share a mutual love which brings them happiness and peace," Ziramba said.

"The two find pleasure in intensely fascinating moments of fantasy, which are triggered by their attraction. They are hardly apart and their love grows fiercely to the extent of no longer having time for anyone else; but at one point, Tinodanana thinks that her relationship with Tadiwa is over when he goes quiet on her. The story reaches a climax when Tadiwa insists that he wants to meet Tinodanana's parents, which ends with an exciting night when the two make passionate love at her house. The result of this is a tiny bundle, however, an acute blow looms."

Written in English, the author pointed out that while it is not easy to individually cater for Zimbabwean indigenous language speakers, she regards English as the most optimal language choice which bridges the gap between the writer and the native reader. Ziramba stressed that her novel is a step towards promoting local features in local literature through characterisation and themes portrayed. Making use of desire as a manifest of love, the novel was reviewed and had its cover designed by a great team from her publishing house, Raincemba Publishing Professionals.

"The deep purple colour on the book cover represents a profound connection between the two characters -- Tinodanana and Tadiwa. The nature of their love brings meaning to life, transformation of the soul, and it is all about happiness. The petals represent the admiration and adoration they share which connects them to higher consciousness, creating a sense of calm in their emotions," she said.

The English used in the novel is simple, designed to be understood by readers at all levels, particularly the 18 to 25-year-old young women. The author hinted that her writing style is narrative and descriptive, in a classic and unusual way. Tinodadana, the female character, narrates the story as she uses a descriptive style to bring out a vivid characterisation of her subjects.

"In this novel, I am communicating a story by unfolding the events that take place between Tinodanana and Tadiwa, and everyone else around them. As I grew up on Mills & Boons, I was inspired to write romantic novels. It is an area which I enjoy and can fully release my imaginative prowess to craft a good story. It also helps me to close my own wounds. It's somehow therapeutic for me," Ziramba said.

While it is a love tale, with the main theme being love, great themes such as unemployment, urban poverty and corruption are brought out. The duty of the police in society is vividly highlighted, and the role of women is depicted through Tinodanana's mother. Family is also another theme brought up in the story, showing the love, friendship, and support rendered by family throughout all phases of life. Friendship is revealed, where solace is found and advice is given, it is even an alibi when need be. Death is highlighted in the novel as one prominent theme, when a character perishes in an accident. The emotions are immense as it collides with what is supposed to be the celebration of a new life.

Giving an insight on the creative writing process, Ziramba admitted that writers can get caught up in between subplots which should all sum up the story at the end. She said after having an idea which may be a flash of inspiration from something or from someone, there is the need to plot an outline which will sequence the events of the story. After the draft, what follows is revision, and in writing, there are chances that half the story may be rewritten. Aware of how the publishing industry is highly unpredictable, the author noted that writers rely on readers to measure the impact of their books, hence the need to do the idea generation phase with the most proficiency.

While being in love usually yields beautiful things, there are moments when one is forced to be secretive, lie, and to neglect some responsibilities and relationships.

Ziramba's novel addresses all these issues, including the situations which lead to arousing moments and the outcomes as well as resolutions to such behaviour. Since authors write with readers in mind, the reception that Sweet Purple Sight will get after the official launch will determine if certainly knowing an audience or target market is decisive.

Follow Grant Moyo on Twitter: @TotemGrant

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