Meet Wonani Mwanza – a 22-year-old Zambian writer, award nominated blogger and a full-time student currently studying Civil Engineering in Malaysia. She describes herself as, “an easy-going, reserved, caring and a very determined young woman. My parents and my brothers really help me stay grounded and focused. My brothers inspire so much of what I do, and they keep me going. Also, I have amazing friends who build me up. I have a great team by my side.”
According to Wonani, “Blogging is not something I planned to do. I have been writing for quite a while now. I discovered my love for writing and storytelling when I was in high school. I’d write poems in a little diary for myself and I made sure my English compositions were the best they could be.
My mom and a couple of friends would advise me to share my work, but I never did. Many years later when I had just started university, I decided to set up a website where I could write about my university experience and anything else that came to mind. Just like that, on a random evening, Dose of Wonani was born.”
The young Zambian remarks, “Personal Growth and Lifestyle are what I’m about. I write best when I write about myself and what I have been through. I thought it would be a good idea to tell my own stories, both good and bad. To find positives from what I’ve been through to inspire growth in myself and whoever reads my blog. Personal growth came naturally to me because I’m always trying to do better, but I understand that I have my shortcomings and lessons to learn in life and I try to find ways to grow from them.
I also have a lifestyle segment which is very different from personal growth. I have this open for when I want to talk about my day to day life, talk about school, places I’ve visited and all that other fun and exciting stuff. It’s also good for when I am tired of writing about personal things.”
On what she wants people to get from reading her blog, “When I first started reading blogs, it took me a long time to find a blog that I related to and that felt authentic at the same time. The same applies to podcasts. I struggled to find something that felt like me.
When I started actively writing on my blog, I wanted people to be able to find something they relate to. I still do. I’d like people reading to know that there is a regular girl somewhere in the world who is figuring out life the way they are.
I allow people to write on my blog and share their thoughts because I want to share that platform with them. Give them somewhere to talk about what they are passionate about or what they think no one wants to hear. I think everyone has a story to tell and if people will do that on my blog, then so be it. I do my best to always have something positive in my posts because I want to offer people relief and create a positive space where one gets to breathe and learn at the same time.”
Wonani’s favourite content creators:
“In the blogging world, I’d say Jackie who has a blog called Calm Wildness. Her blog is one of the blogs I relate to the most.
Another content creator I really like is Thoraya. A creator on YouTube. She has a podcast too. She makes videos where strangers get to tell their stories in a way, they probably never thought they would.”
One of Wonani’s biggest highlights as a content creator has been, “getting nominated for Afrobloggers Awards. As someone who has been blogging for a few years, but has only been consistent for a year, that nomination meant a lot to me and showed me that my hard work is being noticed. Another one is this interview. This is the first interview I’ve had as a blogger! I believe it’s the first of many and just for that, it will always be special. Lastly, I’ve worked with other bloggers and being able to create content with people who do what I do is so exciting for me.”
Just like a lot of us, the young writer likes her sleep, “I don’t get enough sleep so when I get a chance to relax, I take it and sleep. I also read and watch movies here and there. But lying down and doing nothing is probably my favourite.”
The blogger talks about the future of her brand, “Interesting that you would ask me this. The thought of the blog being a part of my brand only occurred to me last year.
I want to see growth. I’d love to have many other babies, apart from my blog, attached to my brand. One of my goals is to work with other brands and put myself out there. I want to have my brand everywhere and anywhere I can. I want to take up space. For now, my biggest goal for my brand is to build it.”
Wonani advises new bloggers that, “Starting a blog is like creating a whole other world. Sometimes it will feel like it’s very demanding, but never forget why you started the blog. It’s your own little world. Don’t let pressure or anyone take it from you.
Also, be patient. Organically growing a blog, with real readers can take a bit of time, so I wouldn’t worry so much about the numbers. Just write.”
The advice she would give her younger self is, “To pick only one thing, I would tell young Wonani to be patient with herself, not only with others.” Read her blog post about this, here.
The songs Wonani listens to the most change so often, but recently, these are songs that she has had on repeat:
- “Bank on it – Burna Boy. I didn’t give this album a chance when it just dropped and now, I accidentally listened to this song again and I love it.
- Frequency – Jhene Aiko. I love Jhene Aiko. I hadn’t listened to this song in months and now that I have, I can’t stop. It’s such a feel good and calming song.
- Isaiah Song- Maverick City Music. I am a Maverick City Music stan. I have to play this song at least 5 times every time I listen to it. It’s a song that just gives me hope.
- Stuck on You- Giveon. This man’s voice is something. I think he is one of the males dominating the R&B game right now. I love him and I love the song.
- Wonder What She Thinks of Me – Chloe x Halle. The melodies strike me first. These girls can sing. I listened to this song for the first time when I watched their NPR Tiny Desk Concert. I’ve been obsessed with it since then.
If you haven’t noticed yet, R&B is my favourite genre.”
Wonani Mwanza wants to be remembered as, “the girl who came out of nowhere and changed the world. As someone who helped others and tried to be a good thing in people’s lives. For my character and the joy, I brought people around me.”
On what makes her most proud of about being Zambian, “Zambians are known for being really nice and friendly people. I’m glad to be part of such a community because being nice goes a long way.”
The blogger’s social media:
Visit Wonani’s blog Dose of Wonani, read her work and subscribe to her blog. Thank you for reading and please leave a like/comment below.