THE JOURNEY OF WRITING

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Good morning readers, I trust we are all in perfect health? 2021 looks like it is going to be all sorts of amazing. I am pretty sure most of us were in church to cross over and give thanks to God, preparing ourselves spiritually for this year. The Crossover service is essential in our lives when transitioning from one year to another; to make resolutions and desire to leave old habits back in the old year. The purpose of this blog post is a reflective one, reminiscing on how the journey of writing has been so far. It is also to motivate upcoming and budding writers to keep writing, because you might never know who might be reading.

We all do need inspiration for major activities that come our way. In a culture obsessed with measuring talent and ability, the important role of inspiration is often overlooked. Inspiration awakens us to new possibilities by allowing us to transcend our ordinary experiences and limitations. Inspiration propels a person from apathy to possibility, and transforms the way we perceive our own capabilities. Inspiration gives you the drive and discipline to continue whatever you have started. It keeps you in sync with your passion and fuels it. Why did I decide to write? Just for the love of it.

4 years ago, I had finished watching an episode of the famous detective series, The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock Holmes, a regal, brilliant obsessive-compulsive high on the drug of puzzles typically snooped around a crime-scene, and collected his information. He observed countless details about the scene and the victim (many of which the police seem to have overlooked) and then from that information arrived at a conclusion that may not be necessarily true, but could be probable based on the information available.  Sherlock Holmes, together with his assistant, Dr. Watson used a technique known as inductive reasoning in solving all of their crimes. Inductive reasoning allowed Sherlock to extrapolate from the information observed in order to arrive at conclusions about events that have not been observed. Here, we see the detective walking into the scene a blank slate; with no pre-supposed ideas about what may have taken place. And he goes on to gather information until he arrives at a conclusion — that still may be incorrect. And yet more information will come and come until he is quite sure he’s arrived at the right conclusion.

His assistant, Dr. John H. Watson created a blog, on the advice by his therapist to write his thoughts and feelings about returning to civilian life from the military as form of dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. He does not start regularly updating until when he first meets Sherlock. The blog became an internet phenomenon and was viewed by nearly 2000 people in one day. These fans even started showing up at the crime scenes in order to catch a glimpse of the duo even before they started work. It was then I decided to start my own blog.

Instead of crime scenes, I decided this blog will feature cases seen at the hospital from my own perspective. From interacting with the patient for the first time, through diagnosis to treatment and discharge. This would enable people with similar complaints not resort to self-medication but seek the necessary treatment at the hospital.

Then it got to the point where I had to start writing. Did I even trust myself to produce good content? I locked myself in a room one day, with a pen and a paper and told myself “I was going to write!”  I penned down the free floating ideas that came to my mind without a topic in mind. Interestingly, what I realized was the more I wrote my thoughts down, they seemed to center around a particular theme, which led me to the Title ‘Missing Ingredient’. I had wanted to understand the essence of living and the most important thing in our life as individuals; the bits and pieces that mend together to make our lives meaningful. Before I realized, I had scribbled down a 1000 words.

I could not hide my joy, when I realized I had been able to write something down, whether meaningful or not. Just the idea of being able to write was what kept my joy in check. However I had to share the content for people to read. My idea behind my blog jumped alive and the creative ideas kept coming, as I quickly went to Google and searched “How to create a blog”. Even though I came across a lot of alternatives, the option I have never regretted choosing is WordPress. WordPress gives you the ability to follow the work of other bloggers, and also be followed back. The more likes you get on a post, it meant a lot of readers were enjoying your post, motivating enough to keep you writing. I quickly created a username after creating the blog and selected an appealing theme to make reading easier, and match the content I had aimed to produce. After successfully creating the website, I had to creatively come up with a name. Just because I wanted it to be a form of Online Journal, I named it Diary of a Growing Black Man.

After editing the piece consecutively, I rewrote the final piece in my diary and named it my first blog post. I then proceeded to type this piece in WordPress. WordPress automatically outlines the errors in your post in red so further editing to produce the masterpiece can be done. In addition, there are a ton of fonts to select from, to get the readers stay fixated on a post. Immediately, I was done typing, I let out a huge sigh of relief and published it on my website. https://eliezerontim.wordpress.com/2017/06/11/the-missing-ingredient/

Again I went on Google and searched “How to Make Your Content Viral”. I can’t understate how influential Search Engines have been in my life because as curious as I am, they always seem to have the right answer to my questions. In order to create content that would go viral, it is essential to share the content on various platforms including Social Media profiles such as Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp, and also share them on receptive websites which accept guest blogposts. I immediately followed these steps and had a large readership within a day.

The feedback I got from my audience was so overwhelming, that I felt a deep sense of satisfaction. Many were actually surprised I had written such a good piece, even though it was my first time. Checking the daily statistics was the best way to start my day because it gave me a sudden surge of dopamine to spring forth the ideas into being. In addition, it gave me so much happiness and joy.

The hardest part of any venture is actually not initiation but maintenance. How do I keep getting content to keep my blog active? The inspiration behind most of my content is as a result of talking to different people and getting to know their views concerning a wide variety of topics. I am the person who will strike a conversation with a random stranger just to be inspired enough to write a post. You never know how much someone knows until you ask. I also try to limit the post between a 1000-1500 words because humans have a short attention span. The feedback I get from my readers after I exceed the 1500 word limit is still overwhelming. For all of you who read my posts, I appreciate you all. Let’s be great in 2021.

Fast forward 4 years later, I have been able to publish over 65+ articles on this website. I am thinking about being an author of a best-selling book to hit the Ghanaian marketplace. Also I have managed to put up another blog mainly for Mental Health Articles for which I have about 15 articles. https://www.onlinepsychiatrygh.com/blog . I have been employed by an affiliate marketing company known as Skills to Dollar Bills, and finally, I manage the social media content of an NGO, DYKB (Development of Youth Using Kindness from a Biblical Standpoint).

Writing has been a fulfilling experience for me because I get to channel and make my thoughts known using a piece of paper and a pen as a scaffold. My views and opinions are heard visibly, and finally, with the right gig, I know it will be rewarding financially.

You have probably always wanted to write but don’t know how? Remember Hard Work Beats Talent! Whatever comes through your mind can actually be written down. The fluid thoughts are meant to be heard. It could be true the escape route for most introverts tends to be writing, but I know a couple of extroverts who are excellent writers, so bear in mind, everyone can write. Scribble down whatever comes into your mind, and don’t stop until you have made sense and put a full stop to the last sentence.

Bear in mind, writing teaches you persistence, determination and consistency because good writers take several days to finish editing a good blog post. Aside their vocabulary being enriched, they develop keen eyes for good posts and strengthen their mind by reading further and deciding to write. You might want to learn the use of punctuations, develop your own style of writing and take further courses. This will render a voce to your writing and place your name on the writing leaderboard.

Keep writing, keep pushing because a professional writer is an amateur who did not quit. Stephen King, a famous author states “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot” Read a thousand books, and your words will flow like a river. All you have to do is sit down, remove all distractions and start writing. In the initial phase you might need someone to edit your works until you become perfect.

“You don’t start writing good stuff. You start out writing crap and thinking it is good stuff, and then gradually you get better at it. That is why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence” – Octavia E Butler

Thanks for reading!

Eliezer

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