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Saturday, 22 December 2018

This is Seven


Illustration by illustration315

Seven years ago, in the living room of my family home in Lagos I typed what would be the beginning of an incredible journey - the start of this blog, bookshy. Seven years later, and I am still as much in love with this blog (and blogging) as I was that afternoon in Ikeja. 
I will be honest, though, I have gone through phases - particularly in the last couple of years - of wanting to quit bookshy, especially those periods when I have been extremely busy with work and have not really been able to blog. Those feelings are usually temporary. The second I get to the blogger 'draft a post' page and start typing, or get an idea for a blog post - the feeling I had when I first started this blog (the joy of learning about African literature) comes flooding back. 

Since I started this blog, I would like to think I've grown with my blog, or my blog has grown with me - or maybe we grew together. Who knows! All I know is these last seven years have been wonderful - and beyond my imagination. From getting to write about African literature in various publications, including Bakwa Mag on Nameless Narrators in African Fiction and New African Magazine on African Books to Look Out For (in 2016); to interviewing and being in conversation with over 40 writers - Nawal El-Saadawi (for African Arguments), Okey Ndibe, Irenosen Okojie, Ayobami Adebayo, Emmanuel Iduma, the 2018 Caine Prize shortlisted writers, Chinelo Okparanta, Leye Adenle, Nikhil Singh, Dzekashu Macviban and more - to being invited to participate in literary festivals - Ake Festival, Writivism, Africa Writes. 




I have also had the pleasure of collaborating with some amazing people and platforms in the African Literary Sphere, including Afrikult. and Africa in Words; and interacted with amazing African Lit Bloggers (Kinna Reads, James Murua, African Book Addict, Brittle Paper) publishers and writers. Since I started blogging, Instagram has become a great platform for the book community, and can I just say the bookstagram community is so awesome. 

This blog even led to new journeys - a podcast. Something I never ever imagined I would do. Yet, with two other African women (@postcolonialchild and @booksandrhymes), in April of this year we embarked on Not Another Book Podcast. I also started working with some amazing women on REWRITE - a platform for black women and women of colour writers.

There's still so much I would like to do (and get done) when it comes to this love of mine. One (that keeps on eluding me) is #100AfricanWomenWriters (one day, I will get it done). I also really want to revamp African Book Covers. 

So for now, I want to say thank you to everyone - even as my blogging has gotten erratic - who still takes the time to read (and share) the content I absolutely love putting together. I have no idea where the next year (or even few years) will take me, but one thing I know is as long as the love I have (and have always had) for blogging remains - and the random ideas I have for posts still keeps coming - I will continue to let my blog take me on this incredible journey. 

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