Blogging has been the go-to place for many in Namibia and across the world when they are not doing their usual duties and/or chores.
Several Namibian bloggers VIBEZ! spoke to said their passion for writing and educating the masses comes a long way, and they will continue to do it even though they haven’t commercialised their trade on their platforms.
Freelance writer Rukee Kaakunga started blogging as a way to share her work on her very own platform - www.rukeekaakunga.com.
“Blogging has since become a healing exercise. I find that many people relate to the personal blogs that I share and hearing feedback from my readers on how they either relate to or how their lives were impacted by my writing, has been a humbling experience which makes me want to share even more,” shared Kaakunga.
A journalist by profession, Kaakunga usually writes about her two biggest passions: parenting and fashion, and occasionally touches on lifestyle pieces too.
With 10 years of writing experience, Kaakunga feels the lack of blog content documenting Namibian culture, lifestyle and other aspects is a reflection of the poor reading culture in the country, adding that with the fast-paced nature of content consumption, people are more likely to prefer video content over blogs.
Public Relations practitioner and blogger Erasmus Nekundi agrees with Kaakunga that generally, whether it is blogs or books, the reading culture in Namibia requires serious cardiac massage because right now, it is in a coma.
“It needs revival, especially amongst Generation Z. What is baffling is that access to reading materials is now made easier than ever, but still the culture of reading is on a nose-diving spree. We can, however, do something to promote and revive it,” stated Nekundi passionately.
On his BlogSpot, ‘The Controversy Corna’, Nekundi shared his ordeal of testing positive for Covid-19 and almost kicking the bucket – a post that gained traction with numerous comments, as it was relatable to many.
“I write to document a footmark of my thoughts on different subjects that trigger my interest and writing passion. Hopefully, one day when I am old I will be able to go through all my blog posts and reflect on how amazing my train of thoughts have altered over the years since I started blogging,” he stated.
With an average readership of about 100 to 200, Nekundi said he blogs once or twice a month, as the writing is usually triggered when he gets bored.
“This is something which I only do whenever I am bored and have free time but unfortunately, free time is a luxury that is costly,” said Nekundi.
Another prolific writer on the bandwagon is Cindy van Wyk, who is not new to the world of writing. A big part of why she shares her thoughts is to be real and honest. Van Wyk said that if she can make just one person feel less alone then she has succeeded, and making money through her passion is not an agenda right now.
“There was a time, a few years ago, when I was interested in the influencer space and I did a few partnerships with brands - mostly on Instagram and Twitter - but it isn’t something that felt natural to me. I’m no longer interested in monetising my passions. It’s okay for me to just do it - as sporadically and imperfectly as I do - because I enjoy it,” recalled Van Wyk.
She stressed that the biggest obstacle in blogging in Namibia is the lack of consistency, as there is a lot to share about Namibian stories, everyday thoughts, feelings, and it shouldn’t have to be to make money or gain a following but to understand the current economic climate which dictates that approach.
Van Wyk stated: “Namibian bloggers aren’t consistent, and that loses our readers’ attention. A big part of that is because we often see South African and American bloggers and influencers making it big, and when we don’t achieve that a few months in, we give up or lose interest. This is understandable, but it is a shame.”
Find her writing on https://cindyvanwyk.com.