A Craft Essay On Our Growing #CmonionlineCommunity.

4 min readMay 2, 2024


Genius is the ability to reduce the complicated to the simple. ~C.W Ceram

If you want to be a writer, the key is not necessarily easy but simple.
Try and write regularly.
The more you write, the more you improve.
It is so with everything in life.

Consistency leads to improvement and ultimately, expertise.
But I’m even apprehensive of the phrase expertise.
I think it is easily misapplied.

In Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell wrote that it takes an average of 10,000 hrs to master a skill.
But Ericsson whose research Gladwell drew his conclusion from believes that mastering a skill doesn’t necessarily make one an expert.
He suggests that depending on the individual or skill, it can take between 20–25000 hrs to truly earn the title expert.

This means that if you write for 2hrs daily it could take over 30yrs to be an expert and if you do it for 3hrs it could take over 20yrs.
So you can see why learning is a lifelong process.
Remember the saying “practice makes perfect”?
Well, after years of learning, I modified it to “practice makes progress”.
Yes, go for progress, not perfection.
Because perfection may be an illusion depending on the prism of perception.
But progress is real. It is palpable. It is everything!

For instance, consider our regular activities in #CmonionlineCommunity.
When I go back and read the first stories we published in 2020 I chuckle at the progress we have made.
Please find time to do this. You will be amazed at the stark contrast.
Besides improving our writing, the more we hold these virtual sessions, the more we improve our speech & presentation skills.
And by the way, all of these constitute communication which is vital in self-development.

Our Community is growing:

In 2020 we started with a weekly essay competition to revive a waning literary culture among young Nigerians.
Paying 10/20k as encouragement, sometimes even 5k.

To date, we have published over 1,200 stories from over 70 budding writers, some of whom have now authored books of their own.
We paid out over N5 million in cash prizes as tokens of encouragement.

We now have a growing audience of over 14,000 followers on social media, while the cash prize is now 100k, and we can only go higher.
That is growth, organic growth.

Lately, I have funded our recent contests without much support for obvious reasons.
Times are rough, even for those of us in the diaspora who have been my target pool for funding.
The rising cost of living means I have to be considerate in seeking support. I mean, why would I ask friends who are already stretched with higher costs?

So I decided to keep pushing on my own.
The most potent motivation I need now should come from you through writing, engaging, sharing and participating.

As I always say, money is the lifeblood of society.
Writers wish to write, sell and make money.
Few people want to spend years honing a craft and not make some monetary/financial gains.

But what we are doing in #CmonionlineCommunity is learning through writing practice.
The aim isn’t to make money but to improve in writing and ultimately create value which is the best MAGNET of MONEY.

The contest makes it exciting, yet it’s not the most difficult part.
Finding the motivation to keep writing is the most difficult aspect.

That brings me to an important point.
Becky Peleowo withdrew one of her stories from the #AprilEssayCompetition because she felt it wasn’t up to “her standard”.
There will be times when you are not just up to your level.
It could be due to time, distraction or other factors.
It happens to everyone including our bestselling writers.

Now remember the saying about a half full & half empty glass.
The pessimist sees a half-empty glass while the optimist sees a half-full glass…PERCEPTION!
Pulling out should be seen as a positive and not a failure.
It is commendable, and I made it known to Becky.
It’s another proof that it’s more about improving her craft than winning the prize.
There will be more opportunities to produce stories she will be proud of.
The most important thing is to keep writing because you love doing it.
So show up, read, write, learn, share, engage and you will always improve.
On our WhatsApp group, on social media, in our virtual sessions etc

Having said that, I get flustered when I read what I may — for want of a better phrase — describe as substandard or beneath our level in this journey.
I remember Daniel once asked me to sieve out such stories but I had replied then that I aim to encourage budding writers.

Well, those who have been on this journey for over 3 years cannot be toddlers.
Our “smallest viable audience” is growing.
And much as we want to grow the community we need ONLY committed writers who will join for the love of the craft, not for the money.

If you enjoyed this, please share it and hit the follow button to join our community of digital creatives at cmonionline.com let’s grow together.
If you wish to emigrate or collaborate, send an email to admin@cmonionline.com let’s work together