Monday, April 8, 2019

Open Book | Beaton


I don't know about you, but I'm absoloutey  loving the #OpenBook series so far. Today, we have the first man ever to be interviewed on the blog! Meet 35 year old Beaton, who also goes by 'B'.  Beaton is a digital storyteller; freelance content creator and social media manager; when not writing, he reads and when he's not doing neither of those, he's helping to grow and build African bloggers, because 'blogging means community'.


Read on to learn more about what Beaton thinks about blogging as a way to preserve the art of African storytelling, and how much can be achieved, if you were to 'just write'. 


Hi Beaton, tell us a bit about your blog
My blog, Becoming The Muse is a space on the internet where I weave the beauty and chaos of the place I call home into a celebration of the mystery and magic in my ancestry.

What country do you blog from?
Zimbabwe

Why did you get into blogging?
I was inspired by the folktales my grandfather used to tell us, gathered around a fire; tales that were not only entertaining but carried with them precious information passed on from generation to generation. I was alarmed to realise that as I grow older, there are gaps in my knowledge and no one left to ask about some of these things, and it hit me that maybe I might be in the generation that will forget where it came from, so I decided to start writing it down, from what I remember from the stories my granddad told me, to the history that I am watching unfolding right before my eyes into a tapestry of how I have come to become who I am; words that will live long after I am no longer here.



How long have you been blogging for?
My blog is close to six years old. If it were a child it should now be in the first grade.

Share the link to your favourite blog post to date. What is it about and why do you like it so much?
It's so difficult to pick a favourite post, as I pour a large part of myself into every word
I write. So I will pick the one which shows why one should find their voice lest your story be told for you. It’s a letter to Africa. It's me trying to make sense of how I am and who I am. It's finding my voice and truth: A letter to Africa

Share a blogging high you've experienced since the beginning of your journey
One blogging high was when a blogger requested if they could print out a blog post of mine so they could use it during a journalism class they were lecturing in, on how a blog can help one gain valuable insight on a country from the perspective of someone actually living in that country.



What about a blogging low?
The lowest point would have to be when the government issued a directive for a shutdown of the internet after protests had turned violent and the internet was blamed for being a tool used to fuel the violence.

What's the best piece of writing advice you've ever received? 
The best piece of advice is to 'Just Write'. I have learned that though its important to have a niche, not every blog needs to fit into a nice well-defined category, my blog is all over the place, you will find there’s flash fiction, poetry, random musings, reviews even some hair care tips.

What other projects would you like to embark on as a blogger?
Growing the network of African creatives and showing that blogging is more than simply an online hobby but a tool of vast potential maybe even mentoring a couple of bloggers. 

Where else on the wide web can we meet you Beaton?
Twitter | @Beatonm5
Instagram | @Beatonm5
Goodreads | Beatonm5


Did you enjoy getting to know Beaton? I know I did! Personally what he said about blogging being synonymous with community, and how the art of blogging preserves our stories really resonated with me. I have a feeling that 'B' may be the first of many men whose story we'll be reading on Madeline Wilson-Ojo. Share your thoughts below.

If you're black, blogging and over 30, and would like to feature in the next Open Book, drop an email to contact@madelinewilsonojo.com.



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9 comments

  1. Thank you for the #OpenBook Series and the opportunity to e featured in the candid conversations. This blogging thing might seem a game or hobby to others, but for some of us, it's much more than that...
    ~B

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Madeline for this series. I really enjoy finding out about other bloggers, especially African and over 30.

    Beaton, it was nice reading from you. We have a few Zimbabweans in my church, so it's nice to read from a blogger in that country. I vaguely remember when the government shut down the internet, but didn't think as far as bloggers being affected.

    Thanks for telling your stories.

    Berry Dakara Blog

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    Replies
    1. Hi Berry. You're most welcome. I'm having just as much fun with this. I had no idea about the government shut down, so this was an eye opener for me.

      Delete
  3. Great post! It was quite short but very interesting to read about Beaton. In general, I feel that our stories are not always taught to us in the school / education system. We don't learn enough about stories of African/Black scientists and inventors in literature. Our culture of oral communication is not enough, we need to preserve our heritage through the written word. Glad to see that someone is doing that already. - www.jamilakyari.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jamila, thank you so much for reading. You are so right. The same problem exists here in the UK. We don't learn anything that will empower black children, so it's up to writers like you, and I and Beaton.

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  4. I've been reading all the posts in this series and I love them. So often bloggers are almost like a ghost on the other side of a screen so it was really cool too get to know them in a personal way.

    ReplyDelete
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