Few weeks ago, Ifeoluwa Aremu, commented under one of our posts. “I felt like a fraud. God knows,it was so weird. I was like whuuuut.Issa dream. Pinch me. I basically lived on writing during service year,” she wrote in response to a question about how writers felt when they first got paid for writing. We reached out to her and in this 3 minute read, she shares her story. Enjoy!
What were you writing during service?
I started with poetry. First, I made sure everybody knew about it until one of my execs reached out to me for a job. Second, the job required me to transcribe a recording every week for #1500 per write up.
How was it?
It was awesome. I got to listen to free recordings that helped my personal growth. I learnt how to channel my voice into how I write. That was how I developed my writing style.
I definitely gave up on poetry during the period. I realized I liked writing in a “gist-like” manner. Kinda like how I talk.
Perhaps you needed to learn? Did you give a shot at learning?
Yeah I did. I definitely did. However, my laziness did not let me get enjoy the learning experience to the maximum
Related: WHAT IS COPYWRITING? (WITH WURAOLA ADEMOLA)
Would you say the job was a motivator for your podcast?
Nope, I didn’t do anything like that after service year . I went back to poetry. I did a lot of micro poetry but it just didn’t feel right.
Sometimes, I’d outdo myself and be like yasssss, I’ve still got it. Other times, I’m like, mehh. I still have a lot of drafts.
But yeah about the podcast, I developed interest during the lockdown when I started making goofy videos for fun.
Interesting. Do you still transcribe?
Not anymore. Only meetings. Work doesn’t permit me to have a side hustle.
Oh. Did you stop because of work or because service ended?
I stopped because of work.
Earlier, you mentioned how you ensured everyone knew you were a poet. Was it deliberate in order to get a job or for another reason?
I just wanted them to read my work and give feedback. I still do it when I write a piece. Even with my podcast, I send out sample recordings. I never planned to make money from writing.
It was therapy for me. Those were dark times mehn. I still write dark pieces Sha.
Wow. If you had an opportunity to monetize writing again, would you take it?
No, it’s a lot of pressure. I like where I am with writing; just for therapy. My diary is my therapist. I’d probably publish them one day.
But for now, I don’t think I want to monetize it.
I understand. What would you advise a writer who’s in the same shoes as you were during service – writing poetry and hoping to get paid someday.
Two things. Be consistent and don’t force it.
Okay, three things. Sell yourself. Let everybody know what you do.
Cool. Before we round off, can you drop a review for our Canva templates? You bought one recently.
I haven’t used it any yet. But from the quick sampling I did, the templates are actually useful for anybody. And that’s the awesome part about it. You just need to edit. Plus they’re easy to navigate and edit.