Panya Banjoko

7 Things about Panya Banjoko

Hello I thought I’d kick off my first blog post for Mollyqueen with 7 things about me...

1. I have approximately 82 dreadlocks on my head ranging from 6 inches to 49 inches long. The pros of this is when abroad I say I’m Bob Marley’s sister and it usually gets me at least one free drink! The downside is it takes at least three days to dry when I wash them.

2. I was once told by a boyfriend that if I was two inches shorter I would have been a dwarf, needless to say the relationship didn’t last.

3. Which leads on to my least favourite number, it’s ‘35’. Why? Because that’s when I realised I really wasn’t ever going to grow anymore and I’d never make it to five feet tall.

4. I have a Nigerian surname and was born in Nottingham by Jamaican parents. This causes confusion when people try to put me in a box, because the English think I’m Jamaican, the Jamaicans say I’m English and the Nigerians can’t understand how a ‘Jamo’ has an African name.

5. My favourite food has to be plantains. I can eat them fried, boiled or even mashed in fritters, for me the world would be a cheerless place without sweet fried plantains in it.

6. I love to write and so far I have had my poetry published by Penguin Press and I have had two children’s stories published (Hari at the Castle and Bibi’s Museum Adventure).

7. I like all things creative which includes knitting, crocheting, writing, performing and visiting art galleries and museums and I’m always learning new things (I recently taught myself to rag rug).
To find out more about me and what I do you can visit my blog

A day in the life of writer Panya Banjoko

Writing, thinking, carefully pondering,
in cafes drinking Americano,
at home in bed with ginger tea,
in galleries sipping elderflower,
at home on the settee.

Crawling to bed at 3am, 4am, sometimes five.
After two weeks, first draft finished.
two more to go
one, must read well on a placard, A2 size.
Theme: Romeo and Juliet.
free write, sit hard and think write,
pace up and down write, approach it upside down write.

The next piece about relationships
the secrets and lies type, he or she has had an affair
some know, some don’t,  some pretend not to know...
capture the essence in a poem
write on paper, with biro, with pencil, tap on keyboard,
try with five year old Parker pen  saved in the hope that one day in times of emergency it will  radiate magical aromas to beckon lazy thoughts
words don’t come,
should have bought a Sheaffer!
new approach
hmmm glass of wine!
Doze and think,
Try format
Haiku? Nah!
Write, then write, and write, and then write some more
Finally, just before a search warrant is issued for the poem
It falls into place, each word concocting rainbow coloured images
Now, memorise, learn inside out and backwards,
Finally perform...

By Panya Banjoko - MollyQueen Featured Writer

To view Panya's other works, visit her sites here: