I live in Kenya and was brought up living with one foot in one culture and the other foot in another culture. Caste in Half is the story of my life up to my teenage years.
I built a school and have a small farm in Kitale Kenya. I am soon to move to the UK as I have dual citizenship. Again it is strange that the pull of the UK and the pull of Kenya still Castes me in Half.
"Author Susan Robinson has been reading many books but unfortunately, most of them were fiction. Caste in Half is her first book to write. She was inspired by Karen Blixen’s book – OUT OF AFRICA and other many writers who lived in the then British East Africa. Her dream vacation would be to go far away into the Alps Mountains or visit the Eskimos, experience and sample their lifestyle in the Arctic or wherever they are. She built a school and has a small farm in Kitale Kenya. Susan advises young writers to be true to themselves and keep writing and never give up."
Which is your favorite childhood memory of being brought up living with one foot in one culture and the other foot in another culture?
There is no happy memory. That’s why I wrote the book to bring out my memories which were not very pleasant sometimes.
What type of books did you read during childhood? Has your taste changed since you started pursuing a writing career?
our grandmother always sent us Children Books from UK. We had a room full of books. We called it our Home Library.
What inspired you to build a school and have a small farm in Kitale Kenya?
My father Mr. Malcolm Sewell Robinson was an Agricultural officer posted to Kenya by the British colonial government. As an officer my father supervised large farms as an Agricultural Officer before 1963 during the colonial period and bought land after 1964 where he practiced mixed agriculture i.e. rearing of animals and farming crops. We had lots of fruit trees in our farm most being oranges, tangerine, pineapples and macadamia nuts, until that gave rise to Machungwa farm area because of our horticultural activities. My father had good farm workers who ensured that everything was done well. As a child I really looked forward to being like my father (owning farms). When colony ended in 1964, my father decided to remain back in Kenya. He became a high school teacher. He taught in many seconday schools in Ole Kajiado, Tambach, Kitale Day and Chewoyet. Many people loved and respected my father as a Head teacher and taught many students who hold high positions in Kenya today. These two phenomenons really encouraged my to establish my own school.
What inspired you to start writing, "Caste in Half?" What was the biggest challenge while writing a story of your life up to your teenage years?
I have been reading many books but unfortunately most of them were fiction. But when I read about Karen Blixen’s book – Out of Africa, The Flame Tree of Thika and White Man’s Country by Elizabeth Huxley my eyes were opened and I started thinking of myself in those lines. Considering that I am a half caste, “I told myself; wouldn’t it be interesting if I wrote a book about my life.” Then I began the few lines then it was easy and am glad I managed.
What other things, apart from reading and writing are you passionate about?
Non other than being a famous Author.
What would your dream vacation be like?
My dream vacation would be to go far away into the Alps Mountains or visit the Eskimos, experience and sample their lifestyle in the arctic or wherever they are.
What are some of your goals or what are some things you hope to accomplish through your books?
To know who I am, half Kenyan and half English and am proud to be mixed.
Besides being able to do what you love for a living, what are some other perks of being a writer? Is there anything you particularly dislike?
Non at all. I have no dislikes and likes.
Tell us a little bit about the book "Caste in Half" and your thought process while writing this book.
When my father took us to visit some people in the countryside, the locals looked on us as white for they had never seen light skin before. They saw us being different type altogether. I wanted to bring out the humanity concept. That though we are different, we are all human beings with feelings, tastes, likes and dislikes. I want to correct some historical facts about Kenyan history which has been twisted in the modern times. The thought Kenyans have that the British came to take their land and push them in reserve areas which is historically wrong.
Why did you choose to write biographies and memoirs? What is the most difficult thing about writing memoirs?
I found nothing difficult. It came to me automatically, loved as it flowed. No regrets am who I am.
How much did you research to make Caste in Half a hymn to the beauty and majesty of Kenya?
I travelled to Mombasa, Lamu and Malindi courtesy of my father, I saw how beautiful Kenya was and being endowed with many tribes with diverse cultures, and read many East African Historical Books. .it was rewarding for me to put it down in writing.
What advice do you have for any budding writers out there? What are some ways you try to keep growing as a writer?
Be true to yourself and keep writing and never give up.
Why do you write? What or who inspires you to write most of your books?
Caste in Half is my first book to write. I was inspired by Karen Blixen’s book – OUT OF AFRICA and other many writers who lived in the then British East Africa. The challenges they went through amazes me.
What are you currently working on? When can we expect your next book to release?
The 2 nd Book of Caste in Half. It will be more different as it is a different time line – am a grown up and mature. Will let you know when am ready.
What do you think of All Author and its services? Do you have any feedback?
The encouragement am getting from AllAuthor and its services, fans the fire in me to continue writing, more so, the 2 nd Book of Caste in Half. AllAuthor are patient and bent low to my level to understand my story.
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