By: Oluwalaanumi Blessings
The tribesmen community is a network where we as creatives, writers, readers, authors, and artists share our stories and experiences. Here we run a weekly writing contest which is aimed at building our tribesmen not just to become consistent writers, but to become exceptional writers.The winner of this contest is crowned the tribesman of the week.
Meet our winner. She is an amazing writer, a legal practitioner and a wonderful personality. She is Mercy Oluwafemi Adeniyi, a proud member of the TVO tribesmen community and this week’s winner. In this interview, Mercy shared with us an interesting story. I’m sure you don’t want to miss it.
Hello, Mercy. How are you doing today?
I’m very well. Thanks.
I’m happy to hear that. You are really beautiful. No wonder you know what black tastes like. Black is beautiful because you are.
Thanks for the kind compliment.
My name is Blessings and I am a tribe advocate@ thevictoriao.com.
I’m excited to have you here. May we know your name please?
I’m Mercy Oluwafemi Adeniyi.
If you are asked to describe Mercy in five words, what would you say?
I’d say Mercy is ‘not your regular kinda woman’
Thrilling! This is the best description I’ve heard in a while.
Have you always seen yourself as a writer?
Definitely not. I think everyone can write.
I wasn’t always that person who loved writing. I was just a quiet girl who was trying to figure out life. I had too many questions no one was willing to answer. Life became a bore and then I realized I could actually bury myself in books. I read and read and read any positive content I could lay my hands on. Then I got to that point where I felt I could not keep what I was learning to myself. Boom! I started jotting things down and I discovered I was big on imagination. That was how I found the writer in me.
I feel like we are all writers, just that maybe some people put more effort to this thing.
This is really interesting.
Thank you Blessings.
So, for how long have you being writing?
It’s been a long journey though it’s just three years. I did not know what I was doing when I started out. What I started out doing was share the nuggets I’d gleaned from books I’d read. Then at a point my imaginations took over.
I used to be a social recluse (ok, I’m still a recluse largely) but reading and subsequently writing created more friends for me. When I started dropping hints and short pieces, writers reached out to me. They were encouraging and always supportive. That brought me out of my shell and I suddenly found out that I could relate better. Though there were times my pen was all I had. There were times I wanted to stop writing because my imaginations were going to get the better of me (I was always daydreaming and the world didn’t seem real to me anymore).
There were times, I just didn’t know what to write. Interestingly, the times I thought I was empty were times I wrote my best pieces. My short snippets became stories and I saw a story in everything. There were times I was down and then I wrote funny pieces. There were times I was happy and wrote sad pieces. I used to have a large following on Facebook until recently when I temporarily deactivated the account because it was affecting my other goals. Then I tried activating the account again only to discover that it was gone.
I’ve had my fair share of pain and laughter as a writer and were there depressing moments? Lots of them! Through it all, my faith and family have always provided the needed balance every time I need it.
What are those important things you have learnt as a writer?
I’ve learnt quite a lot of things in my short journey.
- You can only get better by doing
- What will stand you out is you being you.
- Follow your process.
- You are good enough. Start writing and then get better at it
So basically, you write short stories?
Yes . I write memoirs as well. And once in a red moon, I write something and people say it’s poetry. But I’m no poet.
If you could tell your younger self anything, what would it be?
I would have a lot to tell her. She should have taken more opportunities and offers. She should have believed in herself more. I would have told her it was okay to make mistakes. I would have told her to not give up. I would have told her that none of her dreams were unachievable.
I would have sang in her ears how pretty she was and how everyone wanted her but thought she’d reject them.
I would have told her that she should have asked all the questions that bugged her, that she should have kept asking until someone answered. I would have told her that God was the ultimate eventually and that she was on the right track. I would have prevented her from making my mistakes. I know it isn’t too late to make up for the things I wish I’d known and so my motto is to keep moving forward. It might take more time but it will eventually be worth it.
My today isn’t over yet! No it’s definitely not over! The sun will shine.
You once went by the appellation ‘once prodigal‘, would you like to tell us why?
That’s a very interesting question. You want to hear the story of my life.
If it means hearing it, then I will.
Okay. I used to be, ‘Your love, now and always’. And I got burned! I’m using burned intentionally. I got badly burnt.
I’m a Jesus girl and there was that time in my life that I just wanted to be like every other person.
Ok, let me start like this….
I’m a conservative Christian and I’ve been like that since the beginning of time but there was a time in my life that I just wanted to be like every regular person.
God made me and said, ‘This girl is peculiar. She isn’t like the regular women I’ve created’ . And I single handedly decided that God probably made a mistake. My story is like that of the prodigal son who wanted his own share of his father’s wealth. Suffice to say that I didn’t last outside God. It took me less than a year to see that I was totally useless without God. I learnt a lot of things during that process, most important of which was ‘you can’t do by intelligence what you got by grace.’
I found my way back to God and dropped my first name. I became ‘Once Prodigal’ and after a while, I discovered that I wasn’t just ‘Once Prodigal’ but I’d now become ‘YoursiblinginChrist’ because a lot of young believers were going through my phase as well. It was a learning phase for me, I wish that part of my life didn’t happen but I’m grateful for the lessons I learned.
Your story is intriguing. Everyone has that i wish story. We just have to let go and make the best use of now.
Exactly. It has only made me better and more knowledgeable about how the world operates.
If you were to give a brief description of the tribesmen community, what would you say?
I had mixed feelings joining a WhatsApp group because of my knowledge of general abuse, but I decided to give it a trial. It turned out more organized than I could have imagined. Everyone acts in a mature manner and everyone is willing to share and rejoice with others. Sincerely, most people in the arts are usually jealous or critical of others yet the Tribesmen have proven that the sky is wide enough for everyone to fly. I also love the fact that we’re regularly supplied with materials and books. I updated on my status recently that I couldn’t wait to have kids just so they’d join the Tribesmen. That’s how much I love the Tribesmen. The community has become a very important part of my life.
I’m glad you found home in the Tribesmen community.
Thank you! Thanks for making home conducive.
Thanks so much Mercy. You’re a bundle of greatness. The world awaits you.
Thank you very much too Blessings. I enjoyed every minute spent with you.