It’s 2118 and you’ve arrived in Lagos for a book festival. When you step out of the airport, what is the first thing you see?
Being that I’ve never been to Lagos before and I’ve an unwarranted nostalgia for the Lagos of 1970s, of the intensity of Fela’s music, so what I see when I step out of the airport is The Shrine spilling out into the streets.
You’ve been selected for a mission to the moon. Which African author are you taking and why?
Ousmane Sembène. I have a suspicion he has been there before.
What invention do you think would change the lives of Africans today?
It is invented already. African languages, but given equal platform to be spoken across all cultural and geographical fences and understood on their own terms.
Two things you’re doing when not reading or writing?
Dancing and playing music.
To what extent has African literature envisioned an African future?
What’s marvellous is the multiplicity of voices and experiences from all over the continent; if there is something to be said about ‘an African’ future, is the immense possibility that lives in that sheer abundance.
What book do you think best captures Afrofuturism?
Soyinka’s ‘Aké: The Years of Childhood.’
You wake up one morning to find that you’ve grown a pair of wings. What do you do?
Call John Akomfrah to tell him that I, Angelus Novus, [am] the last angel of history!
Name one book that made you think differently about the world.
Robert Louis Stevenson’s ‘Treasure Island.’
What is the most difficult part of your creative process?
I prefer creative imagination to creative process, which is always difficult and its chief difficulty concerns, firstly, what to make of any void.
What is your African dream?
An early childhood dream, a fantasy really, was to live in Addis Ababa. That hasn’t changed with time, my Ethiopian dream.