Tuesday, December 26, 2017

2017: Life and Thoughts


Apologies. I know this is not in keeping with the festive season but then I knew I had to write this before we part ways because once we do, I never want to think about you again. 

We started off well. I was in good spirits and had high hopes for the year ahead. I was optimistic and knew what I wanted us to achieve together, so I set about working hard and making contacts with the belief that it would all pay off in the end. Fair enough, I had to say my final goodbyes to a few loved ones, but then what is life without a few losses? 

Even when I suffered betrayal at the hands of family members and saw some of the people that I held dearest go through hell, I still thought you had my back. You gave me my thirtieth year and threw a few pleasant surprises my way. You made me feel creative. You made me feel like I could carry life.

You led me on, made me feel comfortable, made me drunk on happiness. I was blissful. I was carefree, and just when I had completely let go you threw me a curve ball which knocked me sideways.
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Sunday, December 17, 2017

Thank God for Social Media, We Now Have a Voice!


I grew up in the 90s when TV was reasonably good for black people in the UK. Although black and brown faces were few and far between, we were at least treated to strong matriarchs imported from America, such as Aunt Viv and Claire Huxtable. They were educated, homely women holding their families together with grace, love and discipline. We also had our sense of humour tickled with comedies such as Desmond’s and The Real McCoy. Who remembers those shows?

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Sunday, December 10, 2017

Four Great Ways You Can Share Your Story


Hi lovely peeps.

Last time, we discussed the importance of sharing your story as a business person or content creator. If you haven't yet read that blog post, what are you waiting for? Click here to read. 

Today, I am going to share four simple, but effective ways you can do so.

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Sunday, December 3, 2017

Why You Should Share Your Story


Any content creator or business person would have heard the phrase "share your story", a few times. It's a great way to connect with the people you are sharing your content with, or selling to. Sharing your story is all about opening a window to who you are so that your audience can know the character behind the content or the brand. 

A great example of the sharing of a story is the copy on Shea Moisture's* bottles that tells the story of Sofi Tucker, selling shea butter in Sierra Leone back in 1912. As a consumer, I connected with the company's humble roots. This has, in turn, deepened my interest in the brand. 

I have compiled a short list of reasons why you as a writer, public speaker or business person you should share your story with the people you are trying to connect with: your audience or clients:

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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Four Things to do to Settle a Dispute (Featuring Xscape)



"What I need from you is understanding. How can we communicate, if you don't hear what I say?"

Who knows where these song lyrics are from?

Well done you if you silently whispered "Xscape" to yourself! If you are into RnB, have been watching reality TV lately or grew up in the nineties, then you should know a little bit about the reunion RnB crooners, Kandi, Tameeka (or Tiny), LaTocha and Tamika  - Xscape to you and I. After an almost twenty year breakup, the ladies have finally decided to take to the stage again together as a group!

Yesterday, I spent the day singing along to their hits and watching the reality show that follows their tumultuous reunion. This is the inspiration for this post. Hey, if the Xscape ladies had had the opportunity to read this, we might not have had to wait for twenty years!

Here are my four tips to settle a dispute:

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Thursday, June 8, 2017

Apologies/ Stories from the Web



Hey lovely people!

A lot of bloggers do not believe in apologising for an unannounced hiatus. But I feel that if you frequent this blog, you at least deserve to hear why I have been absent for some time. 

Firstly, apologies. (I am one of the few who do believe in apologising!) 

Secondly, my "break" has been largely down to laziness, however, it was triggered by a short bout of illness. Then I celebrated my 30th birthday and I wanted to party, rather than write blog posts - but I am now repentant and have returned for good!

With that out of the way, I thought I'd kick things off by gathering some of the most interesting stories from around the web this week. They all pertain to writing and communications, obviously!

Enjoy, and tell me what you think!

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Building a Successful Marriage is Like being a Good Diplomat

In a few days time, my husband and I will have crossed the threshold that will earn us the title of six months married. *INSERT PRAISE BREAK*

The journey so far has not been without its fair share of adventure. Like being aboard a roller coaster there have been moments of pure excitement, slow moments, times of fear, and also periods of exhilarating joy.

Being a typical south London gal, with roots deeply entrenched in a Ghanaian family, navigating through marriage with my born and bred Nigerian (straight out of Ekiti state) husband was always going to be an interesting albeit beautiful feat.

When two people from identical backgrounds make the decision to be one because of their love for each other, their clash of personalities,
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Sunday, April 9, 2017

A Soft Answer Turns Away Wrath: The Effectiveness of Soft Power

This post is a part of my Reflections* series. However, I think there is a lot to learn from it, so I'd love to share it here too.  


This week learned a valuable lesson about the effectiveness of soft power.  If you don't know what soft power is, it's about using persuasion and attraction, rather than force, to get what you want. In foreign affairs, you may find that governments prefer to use negotiation and diplomacy to settle conflicts rather than sanctions and policies. (Well at least they are supposed to!)

Some time back I had a dispute with a friend over WhatsApp which left me upset, angry and feeling entitled to an apology.
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Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Five Tips for Writing Great Copy



There is no one single thing or magic formula that can be applied to producing great copy. The fact that each piece of copy you write or read will have its intended audience, and unique message and purpose, by default makes it tricky to apply a one-size-fits-all trick.

If you need to take a second to read up on what copy is please feel free to do so on my copywriting page. If you'd rather not, then I can tell you, in short, that copy is simply written material, produced to promote a product or service. See, it has nothing to do with imitation or trademarks!

So if writing good copy is not down to a simple formula, then how can it be achieved? There are general guidelines that can be followed.

I will share five of those guidelines with you. Let's elevate your writing skills from good to great!


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Monday, April 3, 2017

Five Public Speaking Lessons we can Learn from Meryl Streep *UPDATED WITH VIDEO*


One of the reasons  I decided to switch my website over to Blogger was because of the ease of embedding elements such as video here. Now that I can, I have updated this post by sharing the video I shot to accompany it. After all, it's not all the time we have the energy to read. If you'd rather read the post, please continue.  

But before you do, let me reintroduce you to this topic: In this year's Golden Globes, Meryl Streep’s acceptance speech for the Cecil B DeMille Award, which honoured her contribution to the world of entertainment can only be described as thunderous. She unleashed a storm over Trump's head by publicly admonishing him for his behaviour. But, what I took from her speech were the lessons in public speaking. 



 
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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Book Review: The Aso-ebi Chronicles



It is agreed that a good book can have the ability to transport its reader to a place or time that a plane ticket or time machine never could. All the reader needs is the capability to read, and a good imagination.
But, what is often downplayed is the pleasure that is derived from reading of a place, experience or person that you are already familiar with. Familiarity breeds comfort, especially when those places, people and things are brought to life with the narrative, skill and craftmanship required-  as is the case for the Aso-Ebi Chronicles.
From Bewaji's Ankara Adventures to Violet's Velvet Adventures,  The Aso-Ebi Chronicles is a colourful series of  novellas pulling together the themes of African textiles, detective work and romance.
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Like what we've done with the Place?


We have moved!

Yes, after cheating on Blogger with Wordpress I have returned with my tails between my legs. I wanted to try Wordpress as a hosting platform as I thought it would allow me to develop a real professional website but I am honestly a real tech illiterate.

I became weary about calling on the Wordpress helpers for every minute problem and frankly the more gadgets and widgets I wanted, the more expensive it was becoming. I also wanted the blogging element of my business to be more of a feature. So this week, I decided I could do without all the bells and whistles of Wordpress, and opted for good ol' Blogger - where I have ran my previous blogs.

PLEASE, I am not saying that Wordpress is not good at all! If you are real techy, or love to try new things and can afford to maintain a Wordpress hosted site then go for it!

So, what do you think about our new home?

I am still in the process of transferring all my content over, and enabling all my links so please bear with me whilst I spruce the place up!

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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Six Tips to Making Small Talk Without Mentioning the Weather

The awkward silence, the shifted gaze, the nervous laughter, the unnecessary extra bite of the sandwich or slurp of the coffee, and then the inevitable “the weather’s nice today”. 
These are all uncomfortable scenarios I am sure we can relate to when forced to network at a work event or speak to a friend of a friend you barely know at a party. It’s amazing what we put ourselves through when we don’t know what to say. 
Conversation openings, what one may refer to as “small talk”, are vital for interesting conversations which can ultimately lead to great relationships.  On the flip side, bad small talk will lead to a crappy conversation.

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Saturday, February 25, 2017

An Ode to a Place I Love


Every street is lined with churches and churches are as full the gutters that line the streets. Religion is a way of life yet people are gripped by superstition. One-line sermons are scrawled on the back of taxis, yet tro tro mates* hurl abuse at passengers.
At night mosquitoes become busy, bothering every bit of flesh they can sink their teeth in. In the day, the flies take over. Spreading their dirt and germs on everything they land their wearied bodies on. They don’t stop.  They are as busy as market sellers hawking their goods.
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Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Persist!


When I decided to make #wordsareimportant one of the hashtags that would drive the message behind madelinewilsonojo.com , I  must definitely have been in the spirit!
I say this because the turning of the year saw people fine-tuning their goals, hopes and dreams into a single, magic-filled word. I have seen everyone from business coaches to social media gurus, and motivational speakers all seek out their word for the year that will keep them going when times get hard.
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Saturday, January 7, 2017

Broken Roots Book Review & Prize Giveaway **COMPETITION CLOSED**

PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS COMPETITION IS NOW CLOSED. YOU CAN STILL READ THE REVIEW THOUGH!

***There is a fantastic prize to win at the end of this post, so please read until the end!***
Broken Roots, written by London based author Michelle Diana Lowe, follows a teenage life plagued by family drama and personal tragedy. The seventeen year old Teisha is uprooted from her life in the UK after her father’s company becomes successful in the USA.
But new found wealth spells the beginning of misery for Teisha as she copes with the painful knowledge of her family’s inability to handle wealth and love at the same time.
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Friday, January 6, 2017

Compulsory English classes for Immigrants?

Yesterday, I was getting ready for work with Good Morning Britain showing on the TV,  in the background.  Good Morning Britain (GMB) is a friendly melange of light news, weather, entertainment, and competitions; and normally forms the backdrop to my early morning routine. That, or BBC breakfast (if hubby is awake).   Normally little attention is paid to the TV, but yesterday one headline did catch my attention.

IMMIGRANTS SHOULD HAVE TO LEARN ENGLISH BEFORE COMING TO BRITAIN
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