Let’s learn about Uncle Beaton of AfroBloggers
2.What book are you reading right now?
Currently reading The Daughters Of Fate trilogy series by Chengeto Mayowe
3. How often do you read, and do you have a preference for fiction or non-fiction?
I have always been a voracious reader, I devour books. My preference is fiction in general and with penchant for Afrocentric Fantasy, epic tales that cover African lores, legends and myths; science fiction and speculative fiction with Afrocentric themes.”
4.What’s your favourite Shona word and why?
A favourite Shona word…. Shona is full of interesting words but my favourite is this sentence using the exact same word:
5.What is the first thing that springs to mind when you think of being young in Zimbabwe?
I grew up in the 90s in Zimbabwe. I recall getting milk sachets during breaktime at primary school. If memory serves the sachets had images of animals on them with their names written out in English, Shona and Ndebele.
Also I never cared much for milk so I would stash it away and then on Friday, after school, alongside others who had saved their milk during the week, we played a game of Milk Laser Tag…. Very very messy, I feel I must apologise to whoever had to do my laundry.
6.What was your favourite childhood game or thing to do?
Favourite childhood game was to play with toy cars, but as I never had any fancy toy cars growing up, instead we would be pushing half-bricks pretending they were luxury cars raising a lot of dust until it was time to go and bath.
7. Do you ever experience writers block? How do you cope with it?
I don’t really suffer from writer’s block, rather I enjoy it immensely, maybe its because I have realised in essence writer’s block simply means the brain needs to reboot from a particular creative derailment. For example,
You could argue that’s different then I would counter with what if you write like you talk?….
I wrote an article which can be of help to someone stuck in a creative funk
8. Do you have a muse? This can be a person or a thing that inspires you to write. Even a place where you find your thoughts flow easily.
My blog is titled Becoming The Muse the idea behind that was perhaps one should become their own muse and sometimes in musing yourself, you muse other people. I am really my own muse writing from a place of all the words I am always on the verge of almost saying but never say.
9.We read with interest your transition after high school from Mavhudzi to Rasta…. How long have you been growing your hair? What is your haircare regime?
It feels like
I have been growing my hair forever, I can’t even recall the last time I set foot in a barber shop or had a pair scissors in my head (if we don’t count the odd snip and trim) could easily be 10 years plus.
My hair care regime is very minimalistic, I pretty much just wake up like this, followed by a water spritz as a moisturiser with the occasional oil treatment and the odd apple cider vinegar wash.
10. You speak about how you do not define yourself by your hair, but your hair is an identifier of who you are for the outside world. What misconceptions do people have of you?
That I smoke weed and do drugs, that I am career criminal, that I am bad influence with nothing on my mind except how I will get the next high,… I find it weird how people will give backhanded compliments like I never knew locs could be kept so neat and clean or how they never thought a “rasta” could be so organised when they see me in my element. I have attended a church service where the pastor talked of how demons resided in locs and long hair, I could feel eyes on me…..
11. Do you feel a cultural connection with the past because of your hair?
If you had asked me a few years back I would have answered no in a heartbeat… but now I can say exercising the freedom and stubbornness to not cut my hair has made me appreciate how at school we were made to feel that our hair just like our culture was dirty, something to be ashamed of and kept trimmed or hidden beneath a hat or weave.
My attachment to my hair, by extension has resulted in
a connection with my past”
sometimes I found myself thinking of how if I had lived in the past, I might have likely been on the council of wizened elders who understood the secrets of the world and smiled knowingly to everything you said, as if they knew what you were going to say even before you said it….
12.We read with great interest some of the virtual coffee guest blog posts on your site. What inspired this for you?
Coffee dates and catch up….
You know when you make future plans with an old friend like
“hey been awhile we should do coffee and fill each other in on what’s been happening”
and then life has this funny way of you never actually giving the time when both of you are free and unburdened…
Well now you can have coffee with me wherever you are.
13. Do you think African bloggers are under-represented? If you had a magic wand how would you like African bloggers to be better represented?
I don’t think under-represented is the word I would use, Africa has talented content creators spinning out incredible stories. African Bloggers are under appreciated and not celebrated enough, ordinary people don’t really see the work and dedication that goes into keeping a blog alive and imagine putting your heart and soul into your blog and its treated like yet another mundane hobby, small wonder many end up stopping.
If I had a magic wand, I would turn blogging awards such as the African Blogging Awards that celebrate African Content Creators into an event as prestigious as The Oscars and the recognition that comes from being spotlighted by Afrobloggers carry the weight of being listed as someone featured in Forbes Magazine. I have heard from people who started getting more respect for their craft or even getting opportunities simply because they cited they had been nominated in the Afrobloggers Awards in their profile.
14.Your blog site is so varied and interesting. Did it evolve naturally, or did you set out to discover more about the topics you explore?
The blog has evolved naturally as I have better understood myself and my place in the world. If we were to go back to when I started and asked me where I saw my blog in five years I wouldn’t be able to answer and today I can tell you I have a post scheduled to post on my 100th birthday and I hope that in the way rock paintings are treasured as a window into our ancestors lives, my blog might be a repository of how we got to where will be by then.
In coming up with topics I have mostly been guided by a very simple philosophy that “if you want to read about something and you cant find anyone else who has written about it, perhaps you should write about it.”
15. Without checking can you describe the flag of Senegal.
…….. erm green, … yellow… and … red…..
16.If you could create the perfect icecream what would it be? Flavours, toppings, the works…
A rainbow coloured scoop flavoured with coffee and the smell of old books and chocolate flake toppings served in glass bowl with a tiny umbrella on the top alongside the current book you are reading.
Want more from Uncle Beaton of AfroBloggers?
You can read more from Beaton on his blog titled Becoming the Muse.
The link is below:
You can also find him on these sites