Collaboration: You and Me


Collaboration. Holistic Wayfarer showed me how it’s done by inviting me to write a blog post alongside her and Nida S., another writer. An African proverb says if you want to go quickly, go alone, if you want to go far, go together. I went farther this year, because you journeyed with me.

I overcame fear of rejection and what-ifs to approach you, virtual stranger, virtual friend. I told you that I admire your writing and I would be honoured if you shared your perspective on a series I’m doing. And when that didn’t work, I pursued you—busy you, you that hadn’t written in a while, you that was between jobs, cities, homes. Determined not to say your no for you, I ‘harassed’ you until you said, “Yes, Timi!”

From each writer, I collected kernels of truth, after you wooed and wowed me with your words. Someone noted that humility is the common thread that runs through the Learning Series. Indeed, to learn, you must first admit that you don’t know.

The Learning Series was not the only collaboration I did this year. We wrote about age, the love languages of Nigerians, and love for country. The writers took my ideas and ran as far as Australia, danced above and below the Equator, and soared to Canada; yes farther than I could go. The result? A clash of hues softened by the spaces where we glimpsed your heart.

I opine that to write an effective personal piece, vulnerability must become like meat and potatoes. The writers delivered that quality, the ability to be open and yet closed, to be known and yet not known, to lie next to someone and yet not touch. Perhaps I reread your pieces and the comments that followed, to decipher your face in the dark that I might recognize you by light. These collaborations were shared over 150 times on social media, the power of your network not mine. You took me further.

In putting your stories and mine together, my joy at editing surpassed my joy at writing. I questioned if my writing was not merely a platform to pull other writers together to present the world with an anthology, all the stories of humanity in one place. I played with this notion until I met a ‘secret’ reader at an event. The usual pleasantries segued to the question of what I do.

“What do you blog about?”

I sized him up. Nigerian. Early thirties. “Let me show you.” I navigated to, Running in the Airport. “See,” I said, letting him read from my phone, “This kind of stuff.”

“Oh, I’ve read that before, hilarious! Someone sent it to me. So you’re the one who wrote that, he asked, looking at me. “You look . . .”

“Different,” I offered, aware that the photo on my blog was taken about three years ago.

“More beautiful in person.”

The charmer. If I were doing a sweepstake on my blog, I would skew the results so he would win.

“And you sound so . . .  so . . .”

“Ordinary?” I offered again.

“Yes,” he replied, shaking his head. “After reading all that big grammar you write . . .”

Right there, his laughter clambering over mine, I began to write a blog post in my head.

Our laughter reminded me that my collaboration with readers either through the comments or in real life has also taken me further than I dreamed possible. Writing gives me visibility. It is wonderful to meet and know people beyond the page.

Happiness is transient for me, until I celebrate every phase of my journey. It is true what they say; the grass is greener on the side where it is watered. In 2014, my blog was a beautiful place to be because of you.


If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.
 Isaac Newton


©Timi Yeseibo 2014

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55 thoughts on “Collaboration: You and Me

  1. Beautiful, rich post, T. I’m glad you got to experience newer dimensions to blogging in both the stories that unfolded here in the way they did and the editing that go into such enterprises. The prep and the relationships you build in the back room are a whole other world. I appreciate your ambitions as well as the realism, the heights you reach for while keeping grounded. And I admit I’m half-jealous you’re more beautiful in person bc I wouldn’t hear that LOL.

    Here’s to our new year, to the surprises as well as the dreams we will own.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Diana!
      @ The prep and the relationships you build in the back room are a whole other world, true. The writers I worked with are very gracious.
      @ more beautiful in person, lol! The charmer 🙂
      To (pleasant) surprises as well as the dreams we will own, I couldn’t have said it better.


  2. It has been a wonderful journey indeed. I’ll go back and read the posts I missed. God willing.

    “I opine that to write an effective personal piece, vulnerability must become like meat and potatoes” I will definitely hold on to this new year. happy new year!


    1. Hi Tony, I think that readers are looking to find themselves or someone they recognize in our writing. We are, after all, doing life together and a peek into our humanity helps 🙂
      Happy New year!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I stumbled upon your funny but thought provoking blog about a month ago and have been reading it regularly. Isn’t it interesting how we assume people act or look even if we have never met them? Someone once said to me that “I am surprised at you. You are such a quiet person in your personal life, but authoritative when you are at the pulpit.” I had never realized that. I wonder what I would think of you and other bloggers if I were to meet you. What would other bloggers think of me as well? 😉

    Have a prosperous 2015 and may your wishes come to fruition.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m glad you stumbled upon my blog! I enjoy meeting people. 🙂

      In my post, WordPress 106 … Writing and Perception, a friend concludes that writing is a lot like Photoshop. I guess it’s because we can use words to evoke emotions and make people see ‘pictures’. On your blog, you mention you are shy. Therefore I have a picture of you in my head. If I meet you and you don’t appear shy, I would be shocked 😮 😛 XD

      Best wishes for 2015!


  4. Congratulations on a successful blogging year Timi. It’s been more than great reading you this next. Thanks for being sincere and simple with the truth. You and your blog were a pleasant part of my 2014. See you next year!


  5. Fabulous as always… I’m also nervous and excited about 2015😄👍. But, its almost here… We hopefully meet it head on. Have a good one.


    1. Yes, it’s almost here! Nervous and excited, wondering how in the world I’m going to write 52 blog posts in 2015! Knowing that I’m standing on the shoulders of giants like you, makes me breathe easier. Thanks! Happy New Year. XD


  6. Timi, indeed your blog is a beautiful place to be. You have this unique way of drawing us in with your words, your warmth and your witty stories. Thanks for creating a forum for sharing and interaction…looking forward to more lively twists in 2015!


    1. Writing is a journey with different travellers. I am glad that I travelled with you and saw the lightness of ‘two-handed high-fives’ through your eyes. All the best for 2015! 🙂


  7. I love how the more you’ve expanded your blog to bring in more voices the more you’ve grown and been fed by your experiences here. It sounds like you’ve discovered other inclinations and talents as you’ve started to curate. Cheers to you for taking risks and blossoming as a writer, human being in the process. Thank you also for inviting me along on the journey. I was honored when you asked. Happy New Year, Timi.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Diahann, how can I forget the other ‘F’ word? The exploration and discovery we did as we examined what age meant to us . . .

      I’ve definitely been fed by my experience here. In Did We Do Any Learning [5], IfeOluwa wrote, ” . . . I tried to be a writer and most of the things that happened to me—both good and bad—are centred on this.” I share his sentiments.

      Happy New Year! 🙂


    1. And what an adventure it has been, wandering with you through time and space, from Burning Man to the hump (flying with Peggy’s dad), you’ve opened my eyes to a world I didn’t know! Diana is a great connector 🙂


  8. And a fitting end it is. You and your blog were part of my beautiful year. I am grateful for that. Thanks for the memories. Thanks for showing what charm of a child poetry and prose can birth when we wed them with the right ring of words.

    Happy New Year in advance, Timi. Same to everyone here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Blogging delivered to me presents I may have never had. The day I undid your brilliant wrapping paper was a happy one. Expect more ‘harassment’ from me in 2015 😉
      Thank you Samuel!


    1. Hi Frances, I still remember your first comment here, “I stayed because of your words-cant explain farther than that,” and how much encouragement it brought. Thank you. A greater 2015, for you and me, yes! 🙂


    1. I have Holistic Wayfarer to thank for bringing us together. I read your comment and think of this quote: Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success. —Henry Ford

      I’m nervous and excited about blogging in 2015. What about you?


  9. It has been great coming here anytime. Such value-added, laughter-inducing, nod-eliciting, mind-expanding writes all year long.

    Good work Livelytwist! I anticipate a bigger 2015.


    1. Nancy it was a pleasure teaming up with you to write the Learning series.
      Funny how we form impressions of the authors we read from . . . 😉

      Susan (Did We Do Any Learning 3) said, “I have little control over how readers see my characters as an author . . .” Perhaps that holds true to an extent about how readers see us the authors as well.


      1. I would say it’s true 100% of the time:

        * People see the world behind their eyes, based on their experiences.
        * No two people have the same vantage point.
        * We have as many reputations as acquaintances . . . and NONE is accurate.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. “And you sound so . . . so . . .” Funny!

    In my head, you’re the funny yet capable office worker who is clad in sweat pants all weekend but is unrecognizable once the weekday arrives. Oh, what charm! 😀

    Thanks for making 2014 amazing for us, Timi. I loved reading everyone of your pieces. You know, each time I read your blog posts you I was reminded to “harass” my dad some more so he can dust the cobwebs off his blog. Like you, he “blows” big, big grammar! 😀


    1. Lol! In WordPress 106 … Writing and Perception, I write that, “Words confuse too. They make the writer bigger than life; . . .” I also suggest that readers sometimes think my posts are always about me even when I write in the second or third person. Oh, what charm! XD 😦

      I loved having you here and missed you when you weren’t here. Send me the link to your dad’s blog so I can read big big grammar too. I don’t get why people say I write big grammar . . . 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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