When I was asked to be a part of the Woman of Color Writing Circle by Julene Allen, I immediately said yes. It is refreshing to be a part of a small circle of women of color who want to see one another succeed in their writing pursuits and are willing to share their struggles and successes. And let’s be honest – how many Black women authors do you know?
I have always been a writer starting with my poetry about lovers from high school – I loved to write about passionate experiences where I felt joy. I also wrote a small book on mentorship in high school. Growing up, I watched my dad, Michael Beloved, write; he taught me how to type on a manual typewriter and he typed book after book after book on manual typewriters. Whiteout sheets and pens were the editing tools. He even bound his books at home. His books were a family affair. This was long before the self-publishing phenomenon which makes it very easy to publish and reach a wide audience. My father adapted quickly to computers and self-publishing on the Internet. He writes about deeply philosophical and psychological topics and includes translations of many sacred Sanskrit books along with writings on kundalini yoga, astral projection and advanced meditation.
As a young girl not interested in yoga and meditation, I found his writing hard to follow, but I did know that I was interested in reflection and self-improvement. I began writing about what I considered to be every day human experiences; I wanted to reflect on my experiences and writing helped me analyze my experiences in ways that served to improve myself. While this was not all I was writing about, this is what I have chosen to self-publish so far. My mom and dad were my first fans and encouraged me to write and publish often.
My life experience is full of love, heartbreak, fear, hard knocks and opportunities. It is a series of leaps from shaky foundations. I know I am not alone. I am passionate about empathy, service, and knowledge – and- the empowerment and advancement of women and people of color. As I mature, I am more apt to share this passion widely. The knowledge piece is the key to unlocking infinite empathy. Service is at the center of who I am.
I am a self-proclaimed introvert but reading and writing has opened me up and given me the ability to desire human connection in a way I could not have imagined growing up. My deepest human connections are still being formed right now as I prepare to exit my 30s.
My books are the names of beautiful flowers and I call them brownBerry Books. My brown berries are my three children. They are brown and they are sweet like berries. In each brownBerry book, you will read content that makes you feel encouraged to be present and be your best. By changing your perspective, you can change your life and start reaching for the stars!
In Cherry: A Personal Growth Compass, you find short chapters full of fresh insight and advice that you can apply everywhere. You will find yourself assessing who you really are and you will learn practical ways to increase your present awareness and to control responses to the parts of life you love and hate alike.
In Magnolia: The Benefits of Diversity, I discuss parts of my experience which are probably not unique to me. Somewhere in the world, there is another human going through the same things you are going through if not worse things. Keep life and experiences in that perspective and stay on your feet. No matter how hard things get, they can also turn quickly to something wonderful. Ground to something so that you can understand the volatility and stability that life provides. Be ready for both. The hardest part about life is heartbreak and the most wonderful part of life is love itself. Love yourself so you always have something to come back to…you can always return home.
And on the horizon is a book for women with all the things women 30+ wish they knew in their 20s in the areas that are most important…physical, relationships, kids, money, career and education, adventure and YOU!
And after that, I am trying to find the courage to publish some really raw content.
Find out more at http://www.brownberrybooks.com/.
Who I Am:
I am a Dayton-based author. I am a United States Air Force Academy graduate. My number is 1576. I was the 1576th African American graduate of that prestigious institution in 2004. I am also a combat veteran and have lived in Guyana, Missouri, Mississippi, Colorado, Texas, Japan, Iraq, and Ohio.
My favorite part about being an author is the conversations my writing sparks with my friends and family. Every chapter means something different every time you read it. It is this fluidity of application that should drive us to continuing this experience called life and to constantly seeking to improve. My writing teaches me about myself, others about me, and others about themselves. My children inspire me to document my thoughts. I hope that one day it will provide them encouragement to thrive in a world where so many are surviving.
I have always worked in the fields of project management and intelligence in the government sector. When I am working, I am often too mentally full to write but when I am doing what I enjoy, the thoughts flow with ease. When I am not working, I enjoy spending time with my husband, kids, family, and friends. I also enjoy helping others, gardening, writing, building things, working out, traveling, and watching documentaries.
My dream job: humanitarian assistance.
Written By: Bhakti Mary
Edited By: Chyina Powell