Christmas Ideas, anyone?

xmas ideas, anyone_.png

So, today is the 1st day of the last 61 days in 2016. In the last couple of weeks, I have been toying (or should I say, battling) with several blog ideas for the month of December. I have a sense of what I should do, but for some reason, the ideas are still fuzzy without any concrete form. Even in my head. I would love to do something special for my blog readers/followers but I am having a tough time deciding what it should be. So I have decided to pour out my thoughts here. I hope you can help me make a decision.

IDEA #1 

I am contemplating publishing a special Christmas series for the 31 days of December.  I want to tag it “31 Days of Christmas”. One post will be published on each day of December. I will not be the author of the 31 posts. I want 31 different bloggers/authors to send in Christmas-themed entries. I think this could be a nice idea. You know, giving my readers something to look forward to on each day of December. I have not decided if I want to go ahead with this. Why? I don’t know if I can get 31 entries before November 30. Like, is it possible to have 31 entries within a short span of time?

PS: You can make this happen. If you have any Christmas-themed short-story you would love me to publish on my blog, you can send me an email with the story attached. My email is haroldwrites.official @ gmail.com

 

IDEA #2

I would love to give freebies (Ebooks, paper backs, cash, gift items etc) to my readers in December. I have not been able to decide what I should give. Do you think this is a great idea? Let me know which freebies you would like in the comment section below.

 

IDEA #3

Organise a hang out with some of my readers. Like, have a kind of meet and greet with my readers/followers. I am here because of you all. I may not be doing this if no one was reading my posts. And I am desirous of meeting as many of my readers as possible. In person, that is. However, the singular reason I have not settled for this idea yet, is because, I am quite a shy person. Lol. Many people who know me in person find this hard to believe, but really, I am that shy guy.

Kinda.

Sometimes, I stay indoors on weekends (even when I am out of groceries and need to do some shopping) because I don’t want my neighbours on the street to see me. A few times I summon courage to actually come out of my flat, I would take a bike to a shop down the street to purchase what I need. Lol. I cant imagine taking a short trek and having every eye fixated on me. Big LOL.

Will you like to meet me in person? If you think I should do this, let me know in the comment section below. I could come out of my shell for you. We could go canopy walking at Lekki Conservative Centre. Or hang out at Elegushi Beach. Or do whatever.

I am serious.

IDEA #4

I have also been contemplating organising a Blogging Workshop for newbies. You may have seen my Facebook ad a few weeks back. Yeah. It is something I would really love to do, but I have been very busy off late. And I am Mr. Shy. A follower of my blog actually sent me a message saying he is willing to pay N10,000.00 for me to take him through the ropes of Blogging. I told him I was willing to teach him for free. Yea. You read that right. After that interaction with him, I thought to myself: why don’t I organise a Blogging Workshop for anyone willing to learn? I am not a guru in Blogging but the little knowledge I have, I am willing to impart it in others. I know there are so many beauticians, interior decorators, social media merchants etc out there who need a blog presence but don’t know how to go about it. I could teach them for free.  But I will need a conducive venue for this.

So, if you can offer a free venue for this purpose or you know anyone who can do this, let me know. I will be willing to go ahead with this plan in December.

 

So…

Those are a few thoughts I have been having for the yuletide month. Which of the above would you love to see me execute?

 

 

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Why I want to get a tattoo

tattoo

Some few months ago, an avalanche of unusual emotion rose along my path, whooshed towards me, overtook me and of course, drowned me in the process. I did not know where it came from, but it was one extremely strong tide. By the title of this post, you would have guessed what this emotion was. Yes, I felt like getting a tattoo. And the reason for wanting a tattoo is not one you would have expected. I did not want it because I felt it was cool and made me look hippie. Truth is, I did not have a reason for wanting a tattoo. I just wanted it. Something was telling me I had to get a tattoo. I mulled over this thought for some time. Whilst I was mulling over it, another set of emotional tide hit me: I started feeling the need to braid my afro hair too. Arrrrgh!

Was I going through some midlife crisis? I asked myself. It was so unusual that, I, a full fleshed son of a full fleshed and typically religious African father would be considering things as outrageous as getting a tattoo and braiding my hair. I must have been going through some sort of midlife crisis.

And then it dawned on me that, I had not attained the official “midlife age” of forty. I was a long way from it. So, what was responsible for my unexplainable desires?

As I could not proffer an answer to the above mind-boggling question, I decided to kick those thoughts out of my head.

That was some months ago.

A few nights ago as I lay on my bed in the dark of my room with my eyes staring at the ceiling, my forgone thoughts came visiting like a repentant ex who had something new to say. The thought of getting a tattoo re-emerged. I thought of Chimamanda Adichie and her Team Natural Hair Movement. I thought of Wole Soyinka and his eternal Afro. And then, like Archimedes did in the 17th century, I screamed “Eureka” on my bed! I had found a reason to get a tattoo! I needed my own signature look as a writer!

Have you attended African literary events with popular authors and not-so-popular authors in attendance? Have you noticed how most of them wear African print attires like a cult? And then, there are those who keep dreads? And those who are identified by their piercings? Yup, writers have found a way to make themselves stand out in the crowd with signature looks. And I want to be a part of that. I want to have a signature look as an African writer. I want a tattoo. I can do without braiding my hair for now (my afro is gone). But I want a tattoo. I am so getting a tattoo.

But not so soon.

I will get a tattoo when I make my first million from writing.

Million dollar, that is.

I mean, I cannot be carrying a tattoo around with a bank account desperately begging for salvation. I need a bragging right of some sort. You know, if anyone wants to complain about my hippie lifestyle (getting a tattoo), I want to be able to tell them to talk to my bank account. *wears shade*

Until then, my fascination with getting a tattoo can remain a fascination.

What is your weirdest fascination? Ever wanted a signature look as a writer? What is it (and why haven’t you got it)?

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It’s never too late to say this

goal Photo credit: http://rsmollisonread.com/my-2015-writing-goals/

My 2015 writing goals?

No. I stopped setting writing goals since…this year.

Now to the purpose of this post… I know this might be coming late, but it’s never too late to say happy new year.  I bless the good Lord who made it possible for us to see 2015. It was not by our power nor by our might. If it had not been the Lord who had been on my side, I would have been history by now. Despite my unfaithfulness, He still showered me with His steadfast love. 2014 was a particularly amazing year for me. Not so great for my writing craft, but in other respect, it was amazeballs!!! For starters, I celebrated one year anniversary at my paid job in December 2014. Wait, did you think I write for a living? Really? Nah, I don’t write (creative fiction/non-fiction) for a living. Not just yet. It’s something I intend doing later in life. For now, I write for the love of the craft. Okay. I was saying I celebrated one year anniversary on my paid job in December 2014. As most of you don’t know, I was thrown into the labour market some two years ago as a Corper (whatever this word actually mean in English). By the end of my service year (December 2013), the good Lord provided me with a job, which, by its requirements, I was the least qualified for. You know when you apply as a youth corper for a job, which basic qualification for, is to have at least 3 years post-NYSC work experience? Yup, that was the sort of job I applied for. And I was hired.

Before December 2014, when I celebrated a year on the job, the Lord blessed me with this beauty below: car   If you are friends with me on facebook, you would have seen my post on the above. One thing you may not know, is that, within two weeks of getting it, I was welcome into the club of fresh owners with three “bashes”. One was self inflicted, the other two were courtesy of our friends who drive that yellow whale on Lagos roads.  Good Lord, did I almost cry?…Anyway, story for another day….

Asides the material gifts, the Lord also blessed me emotionally and spiritually. My mental strength toughened in 2014. I became braver than I was in 2013 and I was able to face and withstand seeming challenges without breaking.

My inter-personal relationship with fellow humans also blossomed in 2014. I love keeping to myself, but in 2014,  I made sure I made some new acquaintances. Just a few, though.

I also tried to know God more. Yes, the key word is “Tried”,because, truth be told, I am not yet where I want to be spiritually. But yes, I grew in that regard in 2014. I just want to better it in 2015.

Health-wise, the Lord was also faithful to me. I did not have any reason to visit any hospital in 2014. It’s been about three years now since I last visited a clinic. And it’s a testimony for me. The closest I came to visiting a place full of drugs is the pharmacy to buy paracetamol.  And oh, I also bought anti-malarial dose once in 2014. *wide grin*

My love life also finally  took a turn in the positive direction for the first time in four years. Shussh..Story for another day.

God has started 2015 in grand style for me as well. On the 6th of January, 2015 as I was driving home from work at night, one of those  fine boys who rob unsuspecting motorists and pedestrians along Iyanoworo/Car Wash axis came over to my car whilst I was in traffic. He pointed a gun at me and demanded for my phone…or my life. I starred at this guy for God-knows-how-long without flinching, not because I was brave, but for whatever-reason-it-was, I did not move at the sight of his gun to my face. As he cocked his gun and made more dramatic demands, God took care of the situation by making a way out. I did not lose any personal belonging or my life. What more can I ask of the Most High who promised us the gift of life and was faithful to His word when I needed it most?   Why am I sharing the above with you? We are encouraged in the following Bible verses to do so: Luke 8: 39, Psalm 71: 15 – 18, Mathew 10:32, 1 John 1: 1- 4.

Let me also use this opportunity to say a big thank you to everyone who visited my blog last year, commented on a post or suggested ways to better my craft. God bless you richly. In 2014, I hit over 100 likes on my facebook page here. Thanks to everyone who like my page, follow me on Twitter, instagram or add me on BBM.

I have a feeling 2015 is going to be an awesome year for everyone reading this. As for my writing, some of my plans that have been incubating for a while now should manifest this year by the grace of God. If you have been following my writing, I would love if you could apply some more pressure on me to write more. I have some “crazy” readers like that. They buzz me every now and then to remind me to post a story or two. I need more of these buzzes. They jolt me out of my struggles-of-life-induced reverie.

Gracias.