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Damilare Kuku on How Real Life Inspired Her Hit Novel ‘Nearly All the Men in Lagos Are Mad’    

As a debut novelist in Nigeria, Damilare Kuku is getting a lot of attention. Her new collection of short stories, ‘Nearly All the Men in Lagos Are Mad,’ is resonating with readers, particularly women, who see so much of themselves reflected in the experiences of her relatable characters and their relationships. “The only thing that was quite tedious was emotions. So when my friends — the inspirations behind the stories — went through what they went through, I related as a listener. To write about their experiences, you have to become them. So I found myself being them. Sometimes I would even cry. In the story “Ode-plus complex,” the main character (Jide) was a family member’s experience. I became the character to understand what they went through, which helped me as an actor. It was very therapeutic.”