Happy Birthday, goodnaijagirl.com!

Happy New Year, friends! My first post this year is courtesy of the fact that today is goodnaijagirl.com’s seven year anniversary and I realized it about halfway through the day. If anything was going to lure me to write a post today, it’s that. Here’s my first blog post:

For a short snippet about me, please start at my About page. I have a 100 things list too, but it’ll take me a while to get up to 100 facts about me. I will be updating it as I go along. You can find some basic information about me on there too.

I guess it makes sense to start with why I started a blog about being a Nigerian North American (NNA) who doesn’t quite feel like she fits in. Well, for one, I’m hoping to attract people in the same boat. You don’t have to be a Nigerian North American to have some of these feelings of course, but that is the perspective I know very well and I’ll be sharing.

I never finished that 100 things list, but over the years those of you who’ve been kind enough to join me on this journey have learned one or two things about me, perhaps even things I didn’t want you to know! I’m very thankful to God for the opportunity to share my life and learn from you. After seven years I feel just as excited about this blog as I was on Boxing Day of 2007 (if I’m not mistaken), when I was hanging out in my parents’ basement (because I still lived at home) with my youngest brother, telling him about this clever name I had coined for a new blog, and resisting the urge to buy the domain name immediately because I didn’t know if I’d commit to the blog for the long haul, and I already owned two domains at that point. So I started this blog as a free one on wordpress.com, bought the domain at the end of May 2008, and here we are!

The blogging world has changed a lot since I first started blogging in 2002, and in the past seven years that I’ve identified as a Nigerian blogger. When I joined the circle of Nigerian bloggers, more bloggers were telling their own stories; now there are a lot more bloggers whose goal is to make money, primarily by resharing gossip or news. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to make money in my opinion, as long as you’re bringing value and not swindling anyone in the process. I have a passion for authentic blogging, I have a dream that one day the best-paid Nigerian bloggers will be those producing content that is original, helpful and positively transformative. This doesn’t have to mean reinventing the wheel and spending a week crafting each blog post; it can be as simple as a gossip blogger putting his or own spin on something rather than just cutting and pasting what better-established sources have already put out there. If you’re a blogger, whatever your story is, tell it as honestly as you can, or as honestly as you feel comfortable sharing—there’s no requirement that you put information that you’re not comfortable with out there. If you blog about topics that have nothing to do with you, resist the urge to pass off someone else’s work as your own, be overgenerous with crediting original sources, and use as little of someone’s work in your own blog as you can—graciously send your visitors to their site whenever you can.

If you’re a blogger and you feel the same stirrings I do, I challenge you to resist the status quo: yes, many bloggers are well paid for their plagiarism or what amounts to lazy blogging (a debatable term since many work hard searching out sources to cut and paste from, and there is also the need to always be sharing the latest news), but at the end of the day, I want to be proud of what I have put out there. Not every post will resonate with my readers, and not every post will paint an enviable picture of my life, but no one is perfect and as long as you’re committed to putting out valuable content, if you fail at times it’s not the end of the world. Don’t get me wrong, there’s clearly a place for gossip blogs in our world: they can be very entertaining, but even though the internet appears to be limitless when it comes to space, all this cutting and pasting is pollution, and it keeps us from finding gems of content which may be buried under all the copycats when someone makes a Google search. By God’s grace I’ll be more vocal about this issue this year.

This isn’t even the post I sat down to write when I realized it was my blog birthday, but I’m glad it came out. Thank you for reading—here’s to seven more years.

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16 thoughts on “Happy Birthday, goodnaijagirl.com!

  1. Happy new year to you Jummy and happy 7th blog anniversary.

    Like you, I like authentic blogging, because I know that the blogger took time to think and write out their thoughts and research.And I also like gossip…it’s entertaining and it creates a balance .

    I don’t like copy and paste also, because it’s boring to see same thing in every entertainment blog. This is different from National news which is general…like GEJ daughter getting married… Or political debate…Talking of gossip blog, may i mention that a particular gossip blog stands out with her unique way of introducing gossip from a different angle… SDK blog involves or would I say allow her readers to participate in her blog..an interactive blog..which I like.

    I look forward to reading more on this topic from you in future.

    • Happy New Year, New Dawn, and thank you for the kind wishes.

      You hit the nail on the head with one of the reasons why cut and paste blogging really bothers me: it’s uninspired (boring) and to me it reflects laziness on the part of the blogger—what is the point of putting more of the same out there? I’m so glad you get me: I’m not saying that people can’t blog about the same things but it’s bringing one’s own unique style or perspective to it that makes a difference.

      I do like blogs that invite and encourage participation. When the blogger replies in a timely manner to comments that helps (unlike me lately!).

      I definitely have more to say and I’ll be sure to let you know when I put up that content.

      Have a great week!

  2. I read ‘about you’ and 100 things about you, which makes an interesting read…So you have big feet like me huh?…Again I look forward to knowing more about you.

  3. I hate copy and paste blogging and I love authentic blogging. I have been blogging a while now and I must say at first I was pressured to blog like the popular bloggers. It took me a while to get into my space but I know that it’s not me. I will stick to my core values and one day it will turn out for the best. I love your blog and sometimes gossip blogs are also interesting as well. Congrats again didn’t know you had been blogging for 7years wow.

    • Happy New Year, Ibifiri—I wish you all the best in 2015.

      Amen to these words of yours: I will stick to my core values and one day it will turn out for the best. I cannot wait to see you make it!

      There’s something about gossip that piques people’s interest isn’t there? :)

  4. Happy Blog birthday GNG!
    It has been a pleasure and blessing knowing you and encountering your blog.
    I admire the fact that you advocate for original content on blogs and that you are very passionate about what you do!
    You inspire many people. Well done and God continue to bless the work of your hands in Jesus name xx

    • Thank you, Ayo; I appreciate you and your blogging style #teamorginalcontent.

      Finally: Amen and Amen…I’m willing to be used by God in this area that I care so much about.

  5. Happy 7th anniversary! Love your commitment to blogging, it is not easy abeg! And like you, I appreciate a pretty good blogger who has put their sweat and tears into their blogs, by their works you’d know them!

  6. Congrats Jummy! 7 years is a very long time to be dedicated and passionate and keep things interesting in the blogging world. And you’ve managed to do just that over the years. I remember reading/discovering your blog around 2006/7 ish long before even thinking about starting a blog myself.

    Thanks for being an inspiration and cheers to many more years of blogging.

    • Thank you, Highly Favored—I appreciate the support and the kind words. You’re an inspiration yourself—definitely a sister in Christ that I look up to.

  7. Congrats and happy birthday GNG! Like you, I’ve had some form of a blog for years (since 2004, with LiveJournal) and launched DelectablyChic!’s predecessor, Prospere Magazine seven years ago. I’m not like other fashion/lifestyle bloggers, since I don’t do outfit pics/posts much, which means I don’t get THOSE types of sponsorships. I used to care, but now, I’m beginning to grow out of that sort of thing and may be evolving DelectablyChic! into something a little different. Just stay tuned. :)

    • Thank you, Cynthia—I look forward to seeing what DelectablyChic! morphs into. I’m not always good with change but I know that reinvention and openness to new things is a good thing.

  8. Happy new year, welcome back and a very happy anniversary to you! I was so looking forward to reading from you…

    I went to the 100things list and it was fun to learn more about you as well as see how things have changed since you started the blog.

    Have a lovely week! X

    • Clara, thank you for dropping by and Happy New Year to you too! I wish you a wonderful week as well. I have a lot to do to get that list to 100 items!

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