I was awarded Best Travel Blogger by Nigeria Tourism Awards!!!
Do not underestimate the impact of what you do and how many people are watching. That is one of the many lessons I have learnt this year. Blogging to me started as a hobby. I started writing to inspire people based on all the books I read and my many experiences at life. You can read more of that HERE.
Reading that old piece again reveals to me how far I have come and how much I have grown. About 10 months after I started blogging, my blogging hobby metamorphosized into an advocacy moment for tourism development in Nigeria after I discovered the gap in the tourism industry discussed at the first Nigeria Travel Week press conference I attended (CLICK HERE TO READ MORE).
I am an advocate of “if you want to see something happen”, “make it happen” because no one is likely going to do it unless you start. I began writing passionately about what I wanted to see changed in Nigeria and in the tourism industry. I researched more on Tourism in Nigeria and compared our reality with global indexes and saw how far away we were.
This did not discourage me, all I saw was opportunities for growth, and greatness. I am not about to go all nerdy no you, however, (as I keep saying) Tourism can be the number one income generating resource in Nigeria if well harnessed. This and changing the African narrative to a positive one has been my message. Some of these messages are already being achieved. It was recently announced on twitter that President Muhammadu Buhari stated that Nigeria will commence the issuance of visa on arrival for all persons holding passports of African countries at the #AswanForum. This I must say is a big plus for our tourism industry, if you read HERE you will understand why.
The Reality of a Travel Blogger
Enough of my advocacy story and let me get to the real reason why you clicked to read this article. I am excited to see that all I write is being read, listened to, observed and actions are being taken. I am excited because these articles sometimes cost me sleepless nights, hunger strike and more. Now, this is not because being a blogger means you would need to avoid eating, I am simply saying I get so passionate about what I do that I sometimes forget to eat, and stay up late to work.
The beauty of this art is that I get to share my story with you so you do not assume it is all glitz and glamour. You for sure see more of the glitz than the the underground grind, but I am happy to share a bit o the grind with you.
The Award Night
If you have not read about the 2019 Nigeria Travel Week, CLICK HERE to catch up on all you missed. Now, to the story of the awards night.
I was walking down from my car to enter into the dinner hall around 9 PM when I heard my name being announced on stage for one of two award categories I was nominated in. You should know that I almost did not make it for the awards night. This is because the insecurity of not winning was getting to me and I really was not feeling too excited about not being sure. I say this because after being nominated for over 4 awards and not having bagged any, I was not too hopeful about this either. To make things worse, when I get a bit unsure of what to wear for an event I do not get gingered to go. To top the list, my date for the night (my mum) was too tired to follow me to the dinner so my ginger level to attend the event was almost at the lowest bottom (if that is even a word).
I eventually picked up my un-gingered self to meet my friends; Aghogho and Uche at the event. I was walking down from my car and I heared my name being called on stage as a nominee, and I still wasn’t sure what to fill.
Then a big silence
The next thing I hear on stage is my name being announced as the winner!!!!!!!!!!
The way I ran on heels to the stage ehn, I doubt Beyonce would be able to do the same (to my Beehives it is only a joke oh).
I was so excited and grateful!!!! It has been three long exciting and impactful years coming! Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone that voted. Thank you to Professor Wolfgang, the publisher of ATCNews.Org, for sharing this on his site and I am very grateful to have him as a mentor. A big shout out to my mum for being my number one supporter, thank you for your encouraging wise words (you bet I will make sure she reads this).
To Top the list, I received another award from ATQNEWS.COM selecting me as the top 100 tourism personalities in Nigeria. Me oh! Ah, my God is good! He comes through when you least expect it.
@atqnews named your girl ”one of the top 100 tourism personalities in Nigeria.”— 👑TheFisayo.com (@TheFisayo) December 3, 2019
I was told this would get me free visa (s) to country I’m going to. I’m going to put that to test!!😄😁
Thank you once again @atqnews #tourismpersonalities #top100tourismpersonslities pic.twitter.com/flDO0asU9w
Having experienced the good and the bad, increased my networks in the tourism industry and learnt from them, I have realized I would have had a much better start if I had someone to show me the way and put me through.
One of the major problems I know most bloggers face is monetizing their passion or getting the right client to pay, or positioning themselves as a business brand. I know this because I have been in this same shoe and I believe it is best for me to share all that I have learnt. This I would be doing through a travel blogging masterclass.
“If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” – Isaac Newton