PRESS RELEASE: 35 selected for Chris Ihidero's STORY STORY Masterclass

The final list of selected participants for the inaugural edition of Chris Ihidero’s ‘Story Story’ has been made public today, following a four week screening period that saw entries from hundreds of Nigerians from all over the country.

The completely free three-day workshop, which kicks off today, Tuesday October 27, 2015, is in partnership with The British Council, True Nollywood Storiesand X3M Ideas.

In a statement today, founder and lead facilitator Chris Ihidero says 35 candidates have been admitted to participate from Tuesday through Thursday at The British Council office in Ikoyi.
“We always knew that there was a need for capacity building in storytelling but it was nonetheless intriguing to see that the workshop was three times oversubscribed. I think we are on to something here and it will be a real pleasure to engage these participants over the course of the next three days.”

‘Story Story’ has been described by pundits as another intervention project, capable of bridging the skills gap in an industry that could potentially be a driver for the Nigerian economy.

The selected participants are drawn from varied industries, including photography, filmmaking, public relations, media, writing, poetry, blogging, and marketing.

It’s the first time the workshop is happening here, but there are plans, according to Ihidero, a widely acknowledged writer, filmmaker and trainer, to take it round the country following demands.

Chris Ihidero’s Story Story Masterclass will also feature a faculty of creative professionals who will be narrating realities in storytelling. 

Established and respected in the industry, these experts include producer and director, Tope Oshin; publisher, journalist & PR Expert, Ayeni Adekunle Samuel.

Others are award-winning writer, journalist and PR Consultant, Toni Kan; advertising guru, Steve Babaeko; culture journalist, Jahman Anikulapo; writer and TV producer, Nkiru Njoku and producer, Emmanuel Uduma.

#TBDaily Checking out...

I have a friend that used to 'check out'; his expression for not letting the weight of the world get to him and just taking time out for himself. But that was before he became a dad. Now he cannot afford to check out because he has no idea when the kid would need  him.

A lot of us check out. Life can get to you- feeling stuck at work, a bad break up, a bad day in Lagos traffic or just one of those days. And we all check out in different ways- some of us shut the world out, put some music on and zone out. Others go for lunch with friends with the phone off and then there are those who use some less than legal or advisable means. I am talking about those who reach out for alcohol or drugs to numb the pain. Of course, this means you end up causing harm to yourself to run from pain which can't be good in the long run.

Life will get to you, things will get tough and people will be mean.
So how can you check out without harming your liver, your friendships and your future?

- As mentioned above, let music lead the way. There are some feel good songs (like songs from musicals) or your favourite songs (not attached to any bad memory) that can be a quick pick me up for you so put the speakers on and check out!

- De Technologytox
Okay i made that word up. But for real, switch your phones and other gadgets off and take some time to yourself! Sometimes i am good until some ill-timed text, tweet or call shakes me. Switch things off till you are at peace again

- Walk
The benefits of a walk cannot be overemphasised. Be it for their physical benefits and mental wellness. A walk helps you clear your head and see things from a different perspective,

- Enjoy a glass of wine or drink some tea
While i do not want us all to become alcoholics but a glass of wine  or cup of tea can be soothing. For me, even the act of making the tea is therapeutic in itself and trust, you can't be jittery while sipping wine or tea.
Over do it though and you make things worse so please remember, make it A SMALL glass of wine.

How do YOU check out?


#SPEECHgirl x Short Story Sunday "One of those Days'

He heard the alarm, but that only made him want to smash the damn thing and sleep some more. He had actually done things like that in the past which was why his last girlfriend had bought him three different alarm clocks, and placed them all around his room; there was no way he could get at them, put them off, and still go back to bed. Damn pretty women with brains.

He got up reluctantly and put them all off and then sat at the edge of the bed for a bit trying hard to will himself to take the shower. Last night’s activities must have been really been something because for some reason, he dozed off again! This time, with no alarms at the ready to wake him up, the next time he woke up was with a sinking feeling- he was late.

Jide looked at the time. 7.30am. That wasn’t good because in Lagos, the difference between 6a.m and 7a.m was like... well let's just say he was in shit creek with no paddle.

Someone stirred and he looked at the reason he was late. Well, even if he got a warning, it would be well worth it, for if Jide Omisade had one weakness, it was pretty girls with beautiful bodies, and wit.

The shower didn’t take him that long, and neither did dressing up.Today was easy, he was going to work, meeting with a client, then having drinks with another one of his friend’s that was betraying bachelorhood; so, his light blue shirt with chinos, black belt, tie and shoes, and some ‘Old Spice’ to charm the client. It was now 8a.m but he was sure with some creative thinking (he’d blame a flat tyre), and some creative driving (he was known as the king of 360 degrees turns right from secondary school), he could still get away with it.
As for the vision in satin on her bed, he knew she would let herself out and not call him till the next time her dead-beat boyfriend went out of town and she needed ‘to talk’ And talking was one thing he was great at.

So wrapped up was he in his plans that he forgot not to count his chicks till they were hatched. There, right in front of him was karma punishing him for even thinking of lying to his boss. Not only did he have TWO flat-tyres with no jack in his car, but he now remembered his happy and alcoholic self letting his brother ‘borrow’ his spare tyre the night before. “Shit!” What to do? He had to think fast. He made a few calls, but he was just too late and his colleagues living in that area had left already. Well at least, he was sure of a ride back. He checked his physical cash, paltry. No cab driver carried a pos machine around that’s for sure. He quickly legged it to the nearest bank and tried the A.T.M. Damn! What was up today? The damn machine was faulty! What was he going to do?

He stood there thinking. He could try to get to another bank, or, he could…
“Yaba! Yaba!”
…He could get into that bus. Okay, the last time he got into a bus was when he was in his first year at university and he now worked in a company where you were judged based on what car you drove and whether your shoes where by some designer with an unpronounceable name so really, bus-hopping was frowned upon. Sometimes you’re desperate though. And sometimes, you look into the bus and you see a pretty girl with long hair sitting by the window, with the seat beside her vacant and suddenly, your choice is made. He’d just get down and walk the rest of the way to work; no one would ever know.

He got in and headed straight where his brain, well the other one anyway, led him to, right beside her. He only hoped to God that her voice would match her face, and wow, see that cleavage. Maybe it was divine that he had a flat. “Don’t you just hate Monday mornings?” He prayed she would give a half-decent reply. Even if she wasn’t witty, charming or funny, all he needed was some indication that she wasn’t all bad. “Personally, I think Sunday evenings suck. It’s like Mondays become the anti-climax, and every girl loves a climax”.
That’s it, he was getting married.

She was not only funny, but also a good listener, rare for girls. He told her about how late he was for work and why he was on that bus, and she told him nothing, but listened and smiled a lot. And the journey would have been perfect had it not been for that one little snag.

He wasn’t sure where they were exactly, but he was sure that he hated the next words he heard. “Eyin te mi, oya, ibon re o”. He heard the words, and could see like five guys suddenly standing up and brandishing weapons, but it didn’t sink in properly until the slaps began.
“I don’t believe this, are they for real?” He asked her stupidly. Wasn’t it girls that asked stupid questions?
“It would seem, they look serious” She replied needlessly.
He felt the need to protect her, impress her. He leaned over and whispered, “I have a tazer you know, and we will be fine”
“And lucky me, I know some judo”
“You seem pretty calm for someone who is about to get robbed, or even worse.”
“Well, I have been known to work well under pressure. Besides, you haven’t noticed, have you?
“Noticed what?”
She leaned into him and whispered right back. “I’m with them”.
And then the lights went off.

“Oga, get up! Get up!”
He could hear voices. Some were directed at him, but others were just all around. He had a splitting headache but struggled to open his eyes. He was on the ground somewhere, and people were staring at him; he also seemed to have, at some point, been drenched with water. At least he hoped it was water.
“E don open im eyes oh”, he heard as some people left, while others gathered still. “Oga. You well?” a young boy asked him. Then he remembered everything. “Wetin happen?” He asked. This was not the time for his Prep School English; some good ol’ pidgin was needed. “Na one chance oh! E be like say you enter one chance”

Ah yes, of course. The bus, the thugs, and the beautiful wench with the uppercut, or whatever that was she had done to him. He looked around, nothing. Checked his pockets. Nothing. They had taken everything; his watch, wallet, shoes…everything.

“Make you try stand oga, make you go see Doctor”
“Thank you” He mumbled as he got on his feet, his head still throbbing. A policeman came towards him. “Your lucky shine o, na only you dem drop, dem come drive off again.” The police-man seemed more interested in the gist than in say, maybe asking questions like how many they were and where the bus was headed. Whatever, he wasn’t surprised, and he was kinda grateful; I could be worse, they could hold him for questioning.
“Abi you go come give statement? You remember anyone of dem?”. Tall, white shirt and grey pants, red lipstick and a killer smile. “I no see dem well o, make I go hospital, e be like say my back dey pain me, as dem trow me…” There was no way he was going to a police station in Nigeria. No one was asking yet, but what if there was the lone smart officer who would wonder, “How come you were the only one they let off the bus?”. He could hazard a guess and he foolishly thought to himself about how he might not have minded if she had held on to him for a few hours and ‘tortured’ him. But wait, what if her other friends, them with the biceps and guns, wanted in on the action as well? So, no statements, all he lost was money and shoes; oh but those shoes!

He had to call his brother. Funny, the policeman actually lent him his phone, so he called his brother. Thirty minutes and several pure waters later, he was in a car, being driven to the clinic, and then, he would go to work. Yeah, he might have just faced an ordeal but where he worked, unless you were dead or buried alive, you showed up at work and recuperated there.

The nurse at the hospital was actually really pretty. Dare he hope..?

“O what a pitied, they ‘ave ‘urt you”, she said. If they were pretty, they didn’t speak well. If they were pretty and spoke well, they were armed robbers.
Go figure.

“Wetin be dis?” She asked as she helped him take his shirt off. He had not felt it before but there it was, his sim wrapped in a small piece of paper, taped to his shirt. He took it and out it in his pocket, and then he noticed there was a note on the note.

“Get a new line, maybe I’ll give you a call. I have your card after all”.

He didn’t know if that was good or bad, but somehow, that just made his brain tingle.
the other brain.


#ShopTosyn My First Week of Clothes from Vintage Closet

When I began 'A Week of', I wasn't sure anyone was paying attention. But some of you really got into it, even making suggestions.

While I still want to try sporty week and maybe a week of heels (*hides*), I was most challenged by a week of skirts (gosh). Guess what though? I looked into my wardrobe and found my jeans and let's just say, I had weaned myself off them.
Good thing or bad?

'A Week Of' had me challenging myself and dressing to a theme and the exercise was actually therapeutic and exciting. I would think of a theme, check my wardrobe then mix and match. I loved the skirts and the dresses and the clothes. I mean, who doesn't love clothes?

Thankfully, the cool kids at 'Vintage Closet' also noticed and they sent me some stuff from their collection. I follow them on twitter and know they have amazing stuff but to get some to test drive? Ma ma mia!
It was disney of vintage wear.

I started with this floral top that spoke to me first.

What does a tomboy do with a floral top? Mix it up! I threw flats and leggings for a modern day 'joker' feel.

Then I went on to this skirt next.

When I kept looking at the skirt, I just knew I had to try something I haven't tried since my first year in uni- clashing patterns.
I think it turned out quite well with the whole styling making me look like a prim and proper tutor.

The school theme continued with this burgundy pants but this time, I became the cool school girl. 

And then I wrapped it up with a very simple casual look on Day 4.

Check out @vintagecloset9ja on instagram
Tosyns Tips
1. If i could i would raid Temi Dollface's wardrobe because she does vintage right.
How is this a tip? Well get inspired! That's the tip
2. Belts, Hats, Gloves, Scarves, Fun
This is the week that lets you dare. Old is in, it never left
3. Mix and Clash
I'm surprised i immediately went for clashing patterns but it worked. The secret to clashing is pairing the patterns right or having a colour theme.


#TBDaily 3 Ways to Kickstart your Day!!!

Hi everyone,

It's been a busy day today and I'm writing this on my way home.

I wanted to give you some tips on some things I do (sometimes the day before) that help my 'get up and go' and general core daily.

For this post, I'll do a mix of physical and mental.

1. Plan today yesterday
I take out about an hour each day to prep for the next day. This includes writing out my to-do for the next day, prepping for my show, laying out my outfit and sometimes, even thinking about how I'm going to style my hair.
Let me explain.
I noticed that some days I left home late because I hated the jeans I had chosen or I just couldn't think of what to do with my hair. Then I'd go through the day hating what I'd picked.
So now I lay out my clothes and think about my hair. It actually helps.

2. Eat!!!
My friend was telling me at 5pm today that she just realised she had not eaten all day because she left home early. So I told her to buy cereal and take that in the morning.
Like her, I used to leave home with nothing in my tummy, not even water. It meant I would be at work hungry and end up eating snacks or being unhealthy.
Now I drink tea or have some cereal and it actually helps. Have handy things at home for when you have to leave early (yoghurt, sliced bread, coffee / cocoa mixes, fruits etc).
That way, you at least have something in your stomach!!!

3. Pray!
When I don't start my day off with prayer, I feel lost and listless.
Take at least fifteen minutes to yourself every day to pray, meditate and centre yourself. I find Lagos to be the kind of place where anything can happen so be careful! You want to be emotionally and mentally ready for anything and what better way than to pray?
Do you have any tricks or tips to s.h.a.r.e with us?


#TBDaily x #Event: The Red Summit

The Red Summit held last week and had a lot of media dignatories like Biodun Shobanjo (a man I have had the utmost pleasure of working with and love), Betty Irabor, Mallam Garba Shehu, Nduka Obiagbena, Biola Alabi,and more, speaking and debating media past present and future.

I had the honour of speaking on a panel with Editi Effiong, Deji Awokoya, Osagie Alonge and , with Tolu Ogunlesi moderating and our panel spoke on 'The Future of Media'.

We got quite a lot of things in, like how the future is now, it's amazing the things kids do now that we can't even do, methods will change and to survive, one must change with them, and more.
In the end we had to summarise our thoughts in one word. Our 'words' were, Baby Coders, Convergence, Colour and Best Practices. My word was "Individuality".

I'll be shedding more light on "Individuality" and my personal beliefs in a subsequent post. In the meantime, check out some pictures from the event below.


#TBDaily x #TV My fav 'o come on' Wardrobe scenes

I was watching "Quantico" the other day when for the umpteenth time since Priyanka Chopra had been on the run, i asked the tv, "Why hasn't she cut her hair???"

I mean, watch any prison break or fugitive movie and first thing they do is discard their old clothes, dye or cut their hair, and sometimes maybe buy chewing gum. I have never understood that last one sha.
But this is Episode 3 deep into Quantico and home girl still has her hair full, un dyed and looking like a million bucks.

That got me thinking about how
- In "Jurassic World", Bryce Dallas Howard went through the entire movie IN HEELS. She shot, fought off dinosaurs and even walked IN mud in her heels.

I can't even get through a short stroll in Lagos without needing my flats.
Na wa o

- In Quantico and indeed every cop series, the detectives chase criminals, arrest and handcuff, sometimes get punched and yet, their hair is neatly done.
My hair is natural and even the headphones at work roughen it and i have to believe wind, punches and dirt didn't get into your hair?

- In Aladdin (yes i had to go there), Jasmine and Aladdin go on this magic carpet ride (which i have now been told was a metaphor for something else but let me not ruin YOUR childhood) but Jasmine comes back and you guessed it; from hair to headwrap to make up, clothes and shoes, it was not a whole new world.

I've spent quieter days at home with rumpled clothes and stains but Jasmine can go on a magic carpet ride and not come back dishevelled????
What do you guys think?


#TBDaily Are you really unhappy?

I can't remember what I was doing or when it was but one afternoon I was just sad. You know that sorrow that isn't depression but isn't based on traffic or anything you can put a finger on?

Infact I had to ask myself why I was sad and try as I did, I could not find an answer.

So instead of focusing on this great big sorrow I was feeling, I smiled (physically), and began to thank God for things. I thanked Him for my life, for my family, friends, that I was healthy, that I had a job, a career, a voice, everything!

I had barely gone halfway when I honestly felt that joy bubbling again.

I think sometimes we have a default setting and we have to be careful what that is. Sorrow helps us to feel things but when we wear it around just because, then it becomes a burden we must cast out. I've learnt to ask myself why I'm sad and confess the positive over my life instead.

So next time you are sad, ask yourself If you are truly sad or it is just the devil trying to take your joy away?!

#TBDaily x #TV Omoni Oboli scores with 'First Lady'.

This post has been a long time coming. A few days after seeing the movie but thankfully it's out now so you can go see it too!!!

I'm talking about "The First Lady" produced by Omoni Oboli and starring Omoni and Alex Ekubor.

I saw it on Tuesday at the premiere and typically you worry that maybe you won't love the movie but you're there at the premiere with the red carpet and cameras and complimentary champagne so you feel pressure...
No such pressure here. Just a jolly good time watching a funny movie.

A major highlight of this movie which tells the story of two different people from different backgrounds destined to meet in the weirdest of ways was Alex Ekubo.

Alex is hot.
We know.
He acts.
We know.
But in this movie, Alex shone. 
He was funny, he was 'Obama' (the name of his character), and he was "present". We found ourselves wanting him back on our screen, walking, hitting someone (yeah he was bad) or making up (like that lover you love to hate).

Another highlight was the cast in general. When they were good, like Alex, like Omoni (of course), like Yvonne Jegede and ?, they were good. 

#SkincareSaturday Three things to do for your skin this weekend!

Ideally, we should pamper ourselves every day.  Unfortunately, with the hustle and bustle that is Lagos, we usually end up with at best, ...