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At the beginning of the year, I did not necessarily make any New Year resolutions, but I remember reminding myself to continue to deliver value to my clients and employers in whatever project I engage in. I have been improving on fulfilling that personal dream with every single story/article/interview I have had to do so far. I am basically doing what I feel very strongly about at this period in my life – reading a lot and writing a lot! The feedback so far has been quite encouraging… Generally, it could be a lot easier to ‘take the mess’ and experiment with a lot at this point in time so I’m just diving full-swing into the adventure, especially before, and till the end of my year-long NYSC programme, a compulsory national service year, which starts sometime soon (this year).

It is so easy to not realize how much impact one makes through writing and blogging. I am pretty much fortunate to be on a fantastic internship programme that involves doing what I really enjoy to do at the moment. I have been buzzed on Facebook and Yahoo! Messenger a number of times by people who read this blog and other articles I have written, especially on Bellanaija.com. A friend I made at a life-changing writing workshop I attended last year has told me via FB chat how very helpful my blog has been to him. He even offered me a gift – a book that meant so much to him.

Someone even requested some mentoring after reading my two articles on Asa’s “Bamidele” and “Bimpe”. That was quite flattering because I was just doing my own stuff, you know. I will try my best to share as much tips as I can with that lovely writer. I guess it all starts somewhere, aight? Others have commented on how inspiring my posts and the guest posts here have been to them. I get the impression that a lot of people are looking forward to my articles and are assessing me. That adds a lot of responsibility since I need to put out the very best I can offer. I will definitely not allow anything get to my head, though. You, my readers and blog subscribers, have made sure to drop your comments and let me know just how you feel about the content. I’m very much grateful for your unflinching support and I am optimistic that it can only get better. Thank you!

I have observed that I can and should still do more to ask for your comments and make this space a lot livelier than it has been. Yes, it is my Notebook! – a personal blog, but I can never underestimate how much I stand to learn from you and that you stand to learn from other readers by dropping your candid comments. In this vein, I intend tweak my writing style a bit, to accommodate such flexibility as much as possible.

Also, today is the submission deadline for the Commonwealth Short Story Competition. It’s just 600 words and I’ll be sending in my entry right about now. If you are yet to submit an entry, perhaps there are a number of drafts or short story ideas you could fine-tune in the next couple of hours. Wishing you best of luck!

By the way, yesterday, my Interview with Esther Agbarakwe, a young Nigerian environmental sustainability advocate, was published on Bella Naija. Esther focuses on environmental education, especially climate change, and has been to over twelve countries across the world, speaking at a number of UN summits, reaching out to students and young people in rural communities across Nigeria. You can read the post. Kindly read the full interview and let me know what you feel and think about the interviewee as well as other questions you would have loved to ask her.

Happy New Month!!! -GN!

Photo credit: www.advancedlifeskills.com