Saturday, March 25, 2023

Meet Nsununguli Mbo: A medical doctor – novelist

Although he is a psychiatrist by profession, Dr Nsununguli Mbo has always been a writer at heart. As a child growing up in the North Eastern part of Botswana, Mbo recalls having an addiction of always stealthily scribbling little stories during lessons under his desk, little did he know that years later this addiction will turn him into the great novelist that he is today.

After encouragement from people who got a chance to read his short stories, young Mbo decided to send a manuscript to Macmillan publishing company who were very pleased to receive it and made recommendations. “Unfortunately by then I had started at the University of Botswana and the course I was doing took a lot of my time so I couldn’t continue with writing,” he said.

In 2004 when he was in Ireland to finish his medical course, the urge to write again began to bug Mbo. “I was doing my psychiatry rotation when my desire to write returned, I started writing my first book titled ‘Wrong turn’ which I later self-published in 2009,” he said.

Although a lot of writers usually explain that they get their inspiration mostly from their surroundings, for Mbo it is a different issue. He is inspired by his love for listening to people and their body language. “I am a psychiatrist and I deal with a lot of people who are psychotic or depressed. So, it is my duty to observe and write a report for my supervisor who upon reading it, should be able to visualise the patient and this is what I normally apply in my writing,” he said.

He added that as a fiction writer, it is essential for one to always figure out what goes on in people’s minds mostly basing on their body language and the way they behave. “I believe life is nothing but a long story made up of many characters. Each one of us has a story to tell or a story that needs to be told about them and what better way than to bring those stories to live than to write about them in a fictional way,” he said.

Ever since his first book, the star in Mbo has not stopped shinning as he has thus far published six other novels, the latest being a 360 page thriller that will surely keep the reader on the edge of their seats. The book which is called The other four has been a hit among novel lovers and is said to be doing very well in the market.

“I am currently working on three other manuscripts, one of which is in the editing stage. I believe writing is my God given talent and for that I have to share it with the world,” he said.

He continued that what sets him apart from other novelists is his ability of mixing humour with suspense or thriller, though he is quick to point out that two of his novels are purely comedy with a touch of sadness in them. “Most of my books are set in the fictional village of Tsebeyatonki, the surrounding fictional settlements and the fictional Lentsweng town and they are all available at Exclusive books in Riverwalk, UB bookstore or Books Botswana,” he said.


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