Who are you?
My name is Onalenna Mmokwa heading by my stage name (The vitiligo preacher)
Where are you from
From South Africa, North west province born and raised in Kopela , Kopela village.
What is your profession?
I am currently a student and a potential graduate at the North west university (Mahikeng campus) studying Bachelor of health sciences with Human movement science, I am also an author whom just started his career as a published author.
Who is your illustrator?
The major key-factor was my publisher Mrs edna cane swannepoel, I felt as if me and her had a lot in common due to the fact that she is also an author who manuevered her path to greatness by using her negativity as a fuel, meaning she had a disability and is someone who used this impediment as a will to success.
Did you make an input in your cover design
For my cover design I did not make any input, although I wanted to make an art -specially for my book but then my publisher made me to see how irrelevant it was, so because my book was about vitiligo we then decided to make a cover art of my physical pictur and booked a professional photoshoot after I emailed the pictures and the publishing house took care of everything.
The best from my book
The best I ever did was writing about kindness, what I realised was that people fail to be kinder to each other than they used to be like before.
Our fore fathers tried so much to gasp the idea of unity and love, this is something that we have forfeited as now individuals, I am speaking as someone who had vitiligo in a society that did not know anything about vitiligo, and I was mis-concepted.
This is something that I tried to eradicate by writing a chapter about kindness, to make people realise that they should want to love each other more, no matter what the situation is we have to be there for each other.
And I like the side of my part from kindness-chapter that goes as
‘Everyone who enter your life has a lesson to teach and a story to tell but at the end of the day this people make us who we are, sometimes they are destiny helpers, and sometimes they are destiny destroyers, it is impressive how some of these things become useful without consideration.
Every person that you pass during the days that make up your days, it represents an opportunity to show a little more of your compassion & courtesy that define your humanity. Why not start being the person you is during your days and doing what you can to enrich the world around you?
Who motivated you to write
The key-man besides my Vitiligo condition and my motives with it, He who inspired me to write was Marcus aurelius The first Greek true emperor, his stoicism teachings influenced me to develop my own stoic book , Where-by there is a certain segment that I want them to behave more different than they feel.
What inspired you to write
I wanted people to have conscious that they are not only the ones who are struggling, we are all affected by an upheaval struggle called life, a fact that you must not let challenges affect you, what inspired me to write was that I realised many people had fear of coming out from their misery.
So I wanted to awaken the confidence, character and the power of believing in yourself . These are teachings that I wanted my readers to be influenced with, meaning that everything that you do in your life you need to believe in yourself otherwise the world is going to tear you apart, and you will fail to rise up for yourself.
Do you have fans, how do you react to fans
I do have, I currently have a baseline of about 600 fans, my first interview 827 people responded to me, my second interview 1036 people responded with heartfelt messages but loyal fans that I know are 526 that I know and react to the vitiligo preacher.
To me, it is all about the fans more than me so everything I do, I don’t take it for granted because it is all about something that the fans can appreciate, I take care too much about the respect more than the criticism
Because when someone criticise the vitiligo preacher it means that my efforts sacrifices most importantly my economical sacrifices as a young student coming from a poor background means that they all went in vain, so being respected and acknowledged means a lot to me.
Being criticised and disrespected mostly I will react but what my fans talk about even when they complained about a minor spelling error, I turned back the whole manuscript and had it re-edited so that I can bring the best to them.
Bogus vs illegitimate publishers have you encountered such
I never encountered any dilemma, I only 1 publisher which is currently the one that I am with and till now I never encountered anything illicit with her.
How did your faith help in marketing your craft
In 100 attempts, at least 1 attempt you will get it right, so it doesn’t mean that when you have tried for the 99 times you have to quit and say I tried. Doing it everytime when the last time failed will get it to finish this race, so till now I am still unbend and untired, so I keep on trying different strategies.
How many copies have you sold so far
The copies I sold by hand is 57 copies, I sold mostly at my campus’ main gate, others at my village to my high school teachers and direct orders was 135 copies so all in I sold 192 copies.
What is your future plans
Future cannot be predicted, but we can prepare for it, so for my future plans I want to publish many books that I already have a vision for but There is postmothic book (Ready to die) that I feel like it is my calling to give it to the world and I pray God to make me realise my dream of publishing Ready to die in the United States of America.
Encouragement to up upcoming writers, what can you say?
The only advice I can give to this aspiring young writers is that they need to pay attention and research first about how the economy and supply chain goes for authors, it is not much about how talented you are but it is about the Psychological approaches you use as medium for your marketing.
How can people get your book
I am still struggling to put my book in stores, but my book is available at amazon, so it is available in both digital platform and paperback. In the search engine you just fill names / names of my book.
It is also available in the Mecs publishing website as a hard copy and Ebook, so Digital websites makes my book more accessible.
My parting slot
I appreciate my readers of this interview for sacrificing their own time and I pray that God bless my readers and the message I have is that seek meaning in life and remember that meaning can be found in circumstances even in suffering.