My Journey As a Writer And How Writing Has Helped My Life

Wellness

My journey as a writer didn't start last night. I have always been someone who loved to learn and express my ideas and since talking may not always be the best option, I resorted to writing my feelings and thoughts on paper. The first genre of writing I ploughed in my tender years was creative writing, it started after I read a story that my friend wrote back in my JSS1 (Junior secondary school one which is known as 7th grade in most countries). After reading her wonderful work of imagination, I said to myself "Hey, I can write this too" and almost immediately, I bought a notebook and started my own story. It was very similar to hers and I have to admit that I did steal a few ideas from her book, nonetheless, a lot of people read it and loved it which made me proud of myself and encouraged me to write more.

By the beginning of 8th grade, I had written quite a lot of fictional stories and had become known among my mates for my awesome stories. Unfortunately, I stopped writing after 8th grade when two of my stories got missing thanks to my mate's carelessness. It made me so angry and I swore never to give them any of works again which consequently made me to stop writing for a while, the only form of writing I still engaged in were essay writing and other school related works.

However, in my Senior secondary two (11th grade), I came across blogging, not that I had never heard of it before, but I always thought it was only something meant for adults until I learnt otherwise. I immediately took interest in it and starting browsing ways that I could start my own blog. I came across the concept of web designing and almost got discouraged seeing that you'd have to know how to build a website using some programming languages or pay someone to do so, none of which sounded positive to me. Luckily, just when I was about to give up, I came across this platform called wordpress which allows you to create a website in a few minutes without having to know programming and that too for free!

I created my blog: diary of a life puppet in 2019 and in 2020, I got accepted to write for an amazing online teen magazine. So far, I've learnt a lot by writing and I am still learning because I believe that learning the art of writing is a continuous process. However, I cannot deny the fact that writing has and is changing my life and these are some of the ways it has influenced and immensely helped me over the years.

MY WRITING GOT BETTER.

As obvious as it sounds, writing did make me become a better writer. We all know the saying "practice makes perfect" and it's almost impossible to keep doing something over and over again without getting better at it, so when I say writing has improved my writing skills, it would be foolish to disagree.

Writing on my blog made me more creative and practical, but writing on the teen magazines gave me so much more! Whenever I wrote on my blog, I barely sat down to carefully reread and edit my work and if I did, I didn't do it as thoroughly as I should. That changed when I started writing for the teen magazine. Having my works go through editors to be proofread and corrected has helped me in a lot of ways. I became more focused and careful with my use of grammar and punctuation, I learnt to use and combine words skillfully and I finally started proof reading my articles.

I FEEL MUCH MORE CONFIDENT WITH WORDS.

Writing helped me to build a good relationship with the English language. Before, I had to check and recheck every word I wanted to use in an essay, article or even just texting to be sure I was using it correctly so that I wouldn't embarrass myself. Now, that weight is off my shoulders and I'm proud to say that I can use words effectively without having to run to a dictionary every second.

MY SPEED AND IMAGINATION GREW.

The more I wrote, the more my imaginations grew such that everything around me started becoming an inspiration for an article. At first I thought it was just my curiosity and desperation for new pitches and article ideas, but soon it became so wild and demanding that I could literally look at a pencil and come up with a 500 word essay about that pencil (that's how crazy I had become).

I went from someone who struggled to come up with a 450 word essay for her school essays, to someone who could put together a 1000 word essay in less than 30 minutes, not to mention the tons of interview sessions and conference speeches I make up in my head when I'm doing the dishes (lol, I'm crazy).

IT IMPROVED MY MENTAL HEALTH

If you've heard about journaling, then you probably know what I mean but besides journalling, just the act of putting down some words and creating a work of pure imagination gives me inner joy and peace. Whenever I feel down, I write and often times I end up marvelled at the way words just flow continuously.

Writing has really boosted my confidence and helped with my self esteem because when you feel good on the inside, it always resurfaces on the outside.

IT IMPROVED MY TECHNICAL SKILLS

Starting my blog introduced me into the world of web designing and it's technology. My blog is a wordpress blog and wordpress though a beginner friendly CMS (content management system), can be quite tricky so I spent days and weeks watching tutorials on YouTube and reading WP tutorials before I finally got a hang of it. Also, working with my phone and a laptop (sometimes) made me more tech savvy. I figured out easier and better ways to do stuff on the computer and how to make the most out of all my blogging and text editing tools. Blogging helped me achieve this and writing is a big part of blogging so I guess I can say writing helped me in this way too.

WRITING MADE ME MORE GRATEFUL TO GOD AND TO NATURE

I've gotten so better at what I do and sometimes when I'm seeking inspiration, I go back to my old works on my phone and read them and inspiration just comes out of nowhere. It made me realise how good I've become and how grateful I should be to God for giving me such a wonderful talent and giving me so many amazing opportunities to use them.

I learnt to appreciate nature even more when I first wrote about animals on my blog. I learnt so much about amazing animal abilities/superpowers you just wish you had. and it made me realize just how perfectly God created the world and nature is.

Finally...

Writing is both a gift and a skill. A gift such that some people are born with it (I inclusive) and a skill that anyone could acquire if you put hard work into it. Next time you're feeling down or lonely or you're just bubbling with anxiety, try writing. Don't worry about being perfect cause no one is, just pour out your heart on your paper or screen (if you're typing) and let your words flow..

ANYBODY CAN WRITE!

Ikwuegbu Ihuoma
100k+ pageviews

A very creative Nigerian teenager who is passionate about content and digital creation. She loves music, playing the piano, chess, puzzles and any other thing that challenges her intellectually. She also loves learning, meeting new people and taking on challenges. Be sure to read her blog!