Ekow Duker is the author of The God Who Made Mistakes, an acclaimed novel described as a powerful, poignant story of unexpressed longings.
Set in Johannesburg, the novel tells the story of Themba Hlatshwayo, a married man who is struggling to come to terms with his sexuality, among other complex challenges.
Duker wrote two other versions of the book, which he had to scrap, before penning the final manuscript.
He explains that the book was inspired by conversations with different young men about the intersections of their sexuality in their lives and relationships.
I started writing a manuscript, my publisher said it wasn't good. I threw it out and I started again.— Ekow Duker, author
I wrote largely for myself and learned that my writing goes best when it feels like you're taking dictation.— Ekow Duker, author
The protagonist, Themba Hlatshwayo, starts to recognise that he is attracted to men and, as a Zulu man, that's not the script that life has laid out for him.— Ekow Duker, author
As much as Themba and Ayanda Hlatshwayo were living together and sleeping in the same bedroom, they might as well have been living on other sides of the house.— Ekow Duker, author
It's a difficult story to tell and come out with; to say to those close to you that your are gay.— Ekow Duker, author
Take a listen to him explore the themes in the book and writing process: