Trials, Triumphs, and Triumphs

Inioluwa Oyekunle
5 min readFeb 8, 2024
Insights from a Resilient Writer

Long time no blog post!

You wouldn't imagine the mental fortitude it took me to sit down to write this post you're reading. Last year was one of a kind where I passed through various phases as a writer. I wrote a lot last year than I ever had since I began my writing journey, but it was all for work. I didn't write a single article for my blog, despite mentioning in one of my earlier blog posts that I would be publishing weekly here on Medium. (Sighs in disappointment)

As a matter of fact, this particular blog post you're reading was supposed to come in December 2023, but due to reasons I considered important, it couldn't make it to Obasanjo's internet until now. Anyway, I mentioned earlier that last year was the year I went through various writing phases as a writer, and I would be sharing my journey with you and how I overcame or plan to overcome them. Please stay with me.

Phase 1: Writing Isn’t Worth It. I Should Quit.

While this may sound far-fetched, coming from someone who writes for a living, it is actually true. I have been in situations where I have had second thoughts on whether I should introduce myself as a writer or not. I struggled with questions like "am I really a writer or am I deluding myself?", "Is writing really something I want to dedicate my life to?"

After completing the one-year mandatory National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme and becoming an ex-corps member, I used to dread calls or social gatherings because of this very issue. As a corps member, it was easy to hide under the umbrella of being one for a living, but once that chapter of my life closed, I was looking for another umbrella to hide under until I began my master's program. I was determined to quit writing, but the irony is that I kept taking on writing jobs to save myself from sapa.

How I Overcame It

I came to realize that this feeling isn’t just peculiar to me, and that other writers have gone through or are going through this phase. This realization was comforting, and the truth is that one can almost not shake off this feeling. I learned that I have to be determined to stick to writing no matter what, and if I choose to quit, then I cease to be a writer.

Photo by Kajetan Sumila on Unsplash

Phase 2: I’ll Never Be a Good Writer

For a while now, I have not truly believed that I am a good writer, irrespective of how much praise and encouragement I get. Certain comments such as "You write like you talk", "you don’t sound authoritative enough", "your choice of words are too plain and simple" are the bane of my existence as a writer. For every nice comment I receive, there is always something that makes me doubt myself as a good writer. The truth is that it hurts, and what hurts even more is that a tiny part of me believe these comments are all true.

How I Overcame It

I came to understand that there are no perfect writers. What you see out there as perfect writers are those who have been consistent with writing, taking corrections, and learning from their mistakes. I have come to realize that some criticisms hurt because they are true, to some extent. So the way to overcome the feeling of not being a good writer is to keep writing. Take corrections, work on them, and learn from your mistakes.

By putting this into action, you will realize that your "good enough" gradually becomes "better enough." In addition, understand that everyone is entitled to his or her opinion, so learn to filter. As cliché as this sounds, it holds true in every aspect of life. What matters most is what you do with the opinions of others or how you handle criticisms like these.

Phase 3: Writing Isn't Worth the Time.

I couldn’t have prepared enough for the realizations that hit me after I graduated from the university with a B.Sc. Life hit differently and adulthood wasn’t quite what I imagined. Life was happening so fast that if I wasn’t careful, I would have been lost in the flow. I had to be responsible for myself and it felt like 24 hours per day was no longer enough. If 24 hours isn’t enough to get my grip as an adult, where is the time to nurture myself as a writer?

With this I concluded that writing wasn't worth the time. I took a very long break from writing towards the end of last year because I felt I could use that time to do other things. Moreso, it is only a calm mind in a calm environment that can write and I couldn't afford the luxury of a calm mind and environment. I paid heavily for this however. I was constantly baptised with feelings of guilt for abandoning writing.

How I Overcame It

When I was reflecting on how the year went, I realized that if I’m going to make writing work, I need to put writing first. Rome was not built in a day, but every hour they laid a brick. Writing as little as a paragraph per day is better than not writing at all or waiting until I have all the time in the world to write—the time will never come if you don’t create time for it.

It’s a Wrap!

Thanks for staying with me till the end. What were the things that stood out for you in this post? If you are a fellow writer reading this, did you ever feel this way? What's your story, please do not hesitate to share in the comments below!

PS. I'm open for writing job roles. Send an email to inioluwaoyekunle@gmail.com.

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Inioluwa Oyekunle

Content Writer🖊 A woman helped by God💕 Navigating Life's Chapters 💫