The winner of our 2019 Quarter 4 Short Story Contest is Olabiyi Teniola Joy with her story A Part of Me.
Tennie Benson, as most people know her, is a disciplinarian, is ambitious and honest to nearly a fault. She is a hard worker and always ready for a challenge. One of her mantras is, “What is worth doing at all, is worth doing well”.
Tennie is free-spirited and an introvert. By her measurement, she is a 70% introvert who knows how to socialize when the need arises. She loves to impact lives and to keep hope alive in the face of despair. “I believe in a better tomorrow”, she says.
For Tennie, writing is useful for telling stories and for improving society. In her story, A Part of Me, she tells a story familiar to most Nigerians – the dangers of end-of-year journeys, the life of a typical university undergraduate, and the ever-present spirituality of the average Nigerian.
While it is common to tackle these issues from the government and other social angles, Tennie tells hers from the spiritual angle. The lead character has series of supernatural warnings about her movements but she somehow flaunts them and has to pay the price. The story points out the place of the spiritual in our day to day living.
For this winner, one of her dreams as an author is to get internationally recognized like Chinua Achebe, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Professor Wole Soyinka and other established writers. And, to be able to live a well-befitting life through writing, so people will know that writing is a mixture of passion and wealth. Her writer models include Ted Dekker, Dale Carnegie, Lee Child and others.
Not just an author alone, Teniola is also a fashion designer and singer. She is an eclectic being in all regards, a real diamond in the rough. She says of her writing process, “I usually don’t know the end of my poems or stories until I’m done. Every story has a life of its own, so I let each story decide its own title when I am done.”
With one story published and on sale, and another in the works, Olabiyi Teniola Joy is certainly one to watch out for.
Teniola can be reached on:
Facebook: Olabiyi Tennie Benson