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Big announcement: I’m relaunching my Youtube channel

Exciting news! Since there are no travel shows with hosts that look like me, I’ve decided to make my own.

What do Samantha Brown, Anthony Bourdain, and Andrew Zimmern have in common? They’re all travel show hosts… and none of them look even remotely like me.

Over the years and the travels, I’ve become more interested and invested in visual storytelling. I love writing, but there’s something about video… It’s a way more captivating and effective way to tell a travel story (at least I think so!)

And so I would make the odd video here and there about my trips. Nothing serious, nothing particularly good. But then, to my surprise, people started to approach me (me?!) about doing on-camera work for them. Dream, right?

Along with television interviews that were broadcast internationally in English and Spanish (what the heck?!), I did a Toyota commercial which was a pretty big deal for me. Over the last few years I’ve also gotten requests to do casting calls for various travel shows that were destined to be on TV or digital/online (just had one last week!) The more casting calls I did, the more I realized that video was really my medium! Writing is a love of mine, sure. But I adoooore video!

Anyway, last year I signed a year-long contract with a production company who wanted to work with me to develop my own travel show. We filmed what is known as a “sizzle reel” in New York City in early 2015 and I crossed my fingers as they pitched a number of travel show ideas featuring me to different networks.

Guess what happened? It fell flat. My contract expired. In fact, nothing has “stuck” thus far. Getting a TV show on air (heck, to pilot!) is hard. TV shows about travel are harder. The industry is also in a state of flux all the time. People quit, get fired, get promoted, and change roles. Also, what I heard from my producers and casting/talent agents was basically that even the shows making it to TV or digital had talent that were not “my demographic”. The talent was mostly male. Older. Good ol’ boys. “Mainstream” (aka Caucasian).

Womp.

Anyway I tell you all this because I’ve kind of decided that since I love visual storytelling and adore the process of making travel videos that I’ve decided to relaunch my Youtube channel! I may never make it “big”, but I am passionate about sharing my love of travel with others and also very passionate about increasing diversity/ minority representation in the travel video arena. Because where are all the black, Asian, hispanic vloggers/travel hosts?

Youtube is great because all you need is an internet connection and the desire to create. So because I’m trying to be the change I want to see (special shoutout to Edna Zhou of Expat Edna for getting my mojo going again!), I’m going to re-commit myself to chronicling the places I travel through video and not just through photos and words.

Anyway, if you’ve read to the end of this novel, congratulations! Here’s my latest vid– a trailer for my channel! Please give it a gander, SUBSCRIBE to my Youtube channel (https://youtu.be/1pjW8aXwZ_k), and SHARE with all your peeps! I’m always so grateful for the love you show in my endeavours! Thanks y’all!

Sidebar: see if you can count how many different hairstyles and headwraps I wear in the video. Lordt. This is definitely a black girl’s channel. LOL. Also, old school hip hop heads will remember the background song from the late 90s! Bad Boy for LIFE, baby!

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Let me show you the world - Oneika the Traveller

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8 Comments

  • Reply
    Rae
    May 24, 2016 at 5:51 pm

    I saw your post in on Facebook in a traveling group I’m a part of and just wanted to come here and also tell you that this is exciting. I’m looking forward to the content that you plan on bringing to your channel and I’m sure it’ll be amazing!

  • Reply
    Caroline Achieng Otieno
    May 24, 2016 at 7:34 pm

    Wonderful! I love Antony Bourdain..except when he swears..
    Been thinking of youtubing as well..but that will be later on, when I have the cash to purchase all those accessories and video-cams etc..My girl would be so enthusiastic, but I wonder alot about privacy. People know so much about us travel bloggers; our fave eats, and so forth..crave privacy once in a while.
    Well done you! Will be following your tubes and living vicariously through your channel!

    • Reply
      Rashaad
      May 26, 2016 at 7:33 pm

      I actually like the swearing

  • Reply
    Ediyie
    May 25, 2016 at 3:46 pm

    Congrats Oneika!! I really enjoyed your past videos so I’m excited you’re relaunching your channel 😀

  • Reply
    kepp it real
    May 26, 2016 at 3:11 am

    Dont be so self entitled and put all the racial stuff and maybe you won’t have such negative energy…you devote your article about race…most tv pilots do not get aired.and to cmpare yourself to Bourdain or Zimmerman is ridiculous…go do a food show than..lol…..

  • Reply
    kepp it real
    May 26, 2016 at 3:21 am

    I did not realize I was posting,…and that post actually is a compliment. Just be you and you shine through.

  • Reply
    Claudia
    May 27, 2016 at 8:28 pm

    I don’t know how to subscribe to YouTube but I’m figuring it out just so I can subscribe to your channel!!!

  • Reply
    Sharon
    July 26, 2016 at 1:35 pm

    Yes!!! I love your site and appreciate you shining light in all the right places!!

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