is from the African nation of Nigeria He is known for his books on
African, and Nigerian specifically, traditions and how the Western world
has come to affect this nation.
He worked for the Nigerian Broadcast Service while spending his nights
and weekends working on his first novel, Things Fall Apart. This book
was what gained Achebe worldwide attention.
Achebe worked tirelessly on his first book and in the editing process
took out roughly two thirds of the novel. He happened to see a typing
service advertisement in London, and Achebe sent the money and his only
handwritten manuscript there. After several months he had heard nothing.
One of his coworkers was taking vacation and planned to visit London.
Achebe asked her to stop in at the service and check on his book.
When his friend did stop by the service, she found that the handwritten
pages were sitting in a corner untouched. She began to demand that they
begin work on this manuscript and a short time later Achebe did receive
his typed manuscript.
It was fortunate that his friend and coworker did stop by the service in
London, as Achebe has been cited as saying that if he was to never
receive his manuscript back again, he would have lost the will to write,
and probably never would have tried writing again.
Achebe went on to write other books dealing with much of the same topics
as his first book: The influence of Western Culture on his native
Nigeria and specifically the Igbo region where he was raised.