Hey you, thank you for taking time out to read this post because today on the blog you get to meet a blogger! First and foremost welcome to my Guest Feature Series! It’s super exciting doing this, I may not be *a huge blogger* but I do have a presence in the online community, well because of the love many of you give to me daily. and I intend to make use of it by also giving back the love to the community, by shining the light on as many bloggers as I can, because most of us deserve it and also you know make a stand on marginalization—fighting for what’s right.
Meet Lady B & Mo, they are the bloggers behind Literary Everything: A blog strictly for Nigerian/Authors Book Review
1. Hello Lady B & Mo, please introduce yourselves and tell us about your blog?
Lady B: Hello everyone. I’m Lady B, a book enthusiast and music lover. Thankfully, both go well together. I am also a huge tennis fan and travel to watch matches when possible! I run a blog with my friend Mo called Literary Everything. It’s a platform where we review books by Nigerian authors and publishers. Reviews are posted weekly. Additionally, we have an Author of the Week feature to introduce readers to the authors whose books we reviewed.
Mo: I’m Motunrayo, a lover of Books, movies and music. Literary everything was born out of a love for books. This post highlights our reason. Literary everything is a community for casual readers to get to know about authors and read reviews of different books that may appeal to them. We are also partial to relatively unknown authors, we are providing a platform to showcase their work.
2. What was the deciding factor that made you both go “Yes I am doing this, I’m starting my own blog!” ? Are you passionate about what you post on your blog?
Lady B: Mo forced me to do this…just kidding. But yeah, Mo persuaded me to do it. I wouldn’t have started a blog on my own. We both recently started reading books by Nigerian authors again so she suggested we take it a step further and share the good books we read with the rest of the world. We hope to interest non readers, casual readers and avid readers.
I am very passionate about it. It’s hard work but every time someone says they bought/read a book because they read the review from our blog, it makes it all worthwhile. I love reading so that’s not a hardship, it’s writing the reviews and choosing what to review, making sure there’s balance etc. that is the hard work.
Mo: Would you believe if I told you this was on a whim? We wanted to take our discussions from our Twitter DM and share them on a bigger platform. So we said ‘why don’t we?’
3. How would you describe your blogging styles and personas? How meticulous are you both, when it comes to the conceptualization up to the execution of your ideas?
Lady B: Our blogging style was meant to be relaxed but I think it’s in between relaxed and serious because of my personality. I tend to be a bit serious, Mo is the relaxed one.
I am very meticulous and this reflects in anything I do regardless of whether it is for fun or work.
Mo: I’m more of a ‘freestyler’, Lady B is the meticulous one. At the conceptualizing stage we decided that I’ll handle the domain buying and site designing, subsequently, Lady B will handle drawing out a timetable for reviews and editing of our materials. We decided on what we would like our blog identity to be (Name and goal). I’m less formal in my blogging style. I basically write down whatever pops in my head. We then merge our different styles into one write up.
4. What do you want and hope your readers to take from the content you share?
Lady B: I hope the readers think about what they have read in our reviews and buy the books! We occasionally write editorials which I hope people read and act on. The latest editorial was Thoughts on Nigerian Reading Culture which outlined some things which could be done to improve it.
Mo: We want it to inform their decisions in buying and reading a book and also encourage more readers. Reading doesn’t have to be tedious and there are Nigerian writers for different genres.
5. What do you both consider your blogging mojo? How do you stay inspired and motivated to continue running your blog?
Lady B: The vision we have to grow a community of book lovers who interact with one another on our blog.
Knowing that if we are consistent, we will achieve our aim keeps me inspired.
Mo: Blogging is more of a hobby for me. There’s no instant gratification. Sometimes it may feel like a chore but the page clicks are a motivation for me. It means people actually care about the information that we put out. Lady B is also a huge motivator. Lol.
6. What are your long-term goals/plans for your blog?
Lady B: To grow the platform to include other features: more editorials, guest reviews and short stories by budding/aspiring writers.
Mo: An active large community of readers, authors. A literary leader.
7. Who is your favourite marginalized main character? It doesn’t have to be from a book, it could also be from a movie, tv series, games, comics etc. Why is this character your favourite? Marginalization is the process whereby something or someone is pushed to the edge of a group and accorded lesser importance. This is predominantly a social phenomenon by which a minority or sub-group is excluded, and their needs or desires ignored. A marginalized person can be people of colour, the disabled, mentally ill, the lgbt+ community etc.
Lady B: I don’t have a favourite marginalised main character.
Mo: Samwell Tarly from Game of thrones. He defied all odds. He has neither the swiftness nor the strength. His physique should have disqualified him from being a night watch. What he lacks in sheer brute is what he makes up for with his brains. His character mirrors the plight of most marginalized people. The odd one out.
8. It is important that marginalized people are given platforms to shine and bring awareness to their movements and plights. If you believe so, why is it important to you?
Lady B: It is important to me because I am female and Nigerian and Nigeria is a patriarchal society. So when it comes to marginalisation, I do not have to go very far. In my own society, I see how girl children are treated compared to boy children. I see how women are treated. I know how I am treated. We recently reviewed a book, Thorns and Roses by Amaka Azie which dealt with societal issues such as marginalisation of the girl child. So it’s not just fun and games in these books we read, Nigerian authors are telling our stories and getting us to think about how to make the society we live in a better place.
Mo: Because I’m a black woman. I know too well that no one is safe. It is important to tell your story and everyone deserves a right to live as they want, no one should be limited because of their race, sex or how they choose to identify.
9. It is crucial that in whatever we do, we should always strive for both equity & equality, what advice can you part with, when it comes to using our platforms to give a voice to the marginalized?
Lady B: I think that regardless of what we are blogging about, we can find a way to incorporate talking about marginalisation. We only need to open our eyes to what we see in our communities.
Mo: Our blog seeks to bring exposure for relatively unknown authors, we are also pushing the different stories from Nigeria. We don’t want to dwell on the poverty porn that the West seems to be in love with. We love strong characters who reflect our realities.
10. Last but not the least, what’s your take on the blogging communities? What has been your experience within the community?
Lady B: I am very new to the blogging community. We started our blog in February this year on a different platform which turned out to be unsuitable so we moved to WordPress a month ago. So my experience with the blogging community is just a month old. In that time, I am being featured by another blogger for free! So for me, I can only say it’s been positive so far. I hope I can pay it forward. Thank you for the opportunity, Lara.
Mo: We are kind of new to this community, we are still exploring and getting to know all there is to it. We would love to discover and explore more blogs and we are looking forward to it. Thank you for hosting us, Lara.
Lara: I am excited you both wanted me to host you. Thank you so much! I think you’re both wonderful people. I appreciate what you both do with your blog. Also if you need any help blogging related I am glad to help out or source out help for you both. WordPress is an awesome platform to use when all the hidden nooks are discovered.
So I asked Lady B & Mo, to share three of their favourite posts and these are the awesome reviews/posts which are so wonderfully written shared, and I mean talk about changing the pace, and reading some pure African works guys!
What worked? If like me, you haven’t read a play in a long while, perhaps since secondary school, this is a good play to get you reading plays again. The stage directions take a short while to get used to, I bet you’ve even forgotten about that. Sacking the Potter is a quick read but boy, does it pack a punch!
The book discusses mundane activities of everyday life in a witty and engaging manner. This highlights the author’s keen sense of observation of the ordinary and her creativity in writing about them. Reading about hand-shelled egusi evoked nostalgic feelings about shelling egusi as a child. I also remember watching my mother haggle over the more expensive hand-shelled egusi (compared to the machine-shelled ones) with traders in the market and wondering what the fuss was about…
Mo: You’ll fall in love effortlessly with this collection of short stories. When Lady B suggested this book, I readily agreed because I’d read another of the author’s work, Adesuwa’s Dilemma. But the moment I started reading, I was reluctant to finish it, I didn’t want the book to end…
Whilst the title is the domestication of Munachi, the story rather suggests the “unleash the dragon” of Munachi. However, the title is apt as one would see by the end of the book. We found the end satisfying. Everything doesn’t fall into place as you would find in most books but there are some resolutions and realisations, just as one would find in real life.
The author narrates Mafeng and her children’s stories using vivid descriptions in a gripping plot that keeps the reader engaged and on the edge of their seats. It’s difficult to second guess what happens next with the plot twists which the author employs without affecting most of the story’s credibility. It is a tale of pain and heartbreak and the reader keeps hoping for respite on the next page and the next and on it goes.
Sometime in 2011, I took the advice of my dear friend, Modupe and downloaded the Okadabooks mobile application. On getting this app, I couldn’t navigate it as I barely understood how it worked. I downloaded one free book and it was probably the worst book written in the entire universe, I kid you not!
You can find Lady B & Mo on the Social Media sites, listed below, clicking on the various names, will lead you to their account.
You also can be featured, so everyone can also see your thoughts, I’m too lazy to change the questions right now, but I just might in future, but I’m still taking on people who want to be featured. This series I hope can go on until December. Here’s the link to all the information you need to know —> PSA: Sign Up for my Guest Feature Post
I’m a huge fan of Literary Everything now, I’m fangirling because, well Nigerians! Even though I really came to focus on their blog because of this feature series. Literary Everything is perfect and I’m going to shout it loud so more people get on their radar because I know, their blog is going to be something big. I love Nigerian Book Bloggers/Reviewers whatever the platform is. With Literary Everything, I know I’m going to become more aware of many of the glorious Nigerian books out there and the ones to stay away from because I pick up a lot of Nigerian works and I’m just like what is this I am reading, many good storylines, but poor story writing.
With that said, you have arrived at the end of this Guest Feature, now go and show Lady B & Mo some love and see you again next week, with a new blogger.