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Sunday, March 7, 2021

TAKE TEN with author Sherabim Joy

 by Cyrus Webb

Though 2020 had a series of challenges even outside of the global pandemic, it was great to see so many bright spots emerging to give people hope. One of those came from author Sherabim Joy in the release of her newest children's book MANNY AND THE MAGIC KEYS: A Gift From Papa.

In this Take Ten with Sherabim we discuss her writing journey and the new release.

Sherabim, glad we had a chance to connect more in 2020. What a year that ended up being, right? What helped you to navigate the year?

2020 has been a year for the history books! My faith in God’s sovereignty has helped me to navigate these unprecedented times. Like many, I was furloughed from my place of employment, but every one of my needs was provided and it allowed time for me to reassess my long-term goals and focus on what I need to do to accomplish them. Also understanding the necessity of remaining healthy mentally and  physically for my son’s sake motivated me to maintain my momentum.

 You are known for your work as an author and as motivational speaker. Have you always known you had a love of words?

I have had a passion for reading and writing from childhood. I was one of those children who requested books for Christmas in addition to toys. When I was younger, I would write stories for entertainment but never considered becoming an author until adulthood. My love for motivational speaking was birthed through being pushed and encouraged to share the Word of God in church. I soon realized that not only did I love to preach, but I also loved to empower, inspire, and encourage people through various motivational speaking platforms.

What I love about your writing style is that you are able to entertain as well as inspire. Was that your mission?

We are an entertainment-based society, so I recognize the appeal of incorporating an amusing escape from reality for my readers.  However, as a faith-based author, I feel it is my responsibility to plant nuggets of wisdom in the hearts and minds of my readers to motivate them to excel in every area of their lives; whether spiritually, relationally, emotionally, or otherwise. My mission is always to leave my readers with a “thought” that will make them make more sound decisions.

Social media is something you have used like the rest of us. How has it helped you to stay connected and reach new readers?

Social media has become a way of life and is a great and inexpensive way to stay connected with current followers of my work as well as reach new readers. There can be a significant amount of time in between releasing work, but social media helps my readers know that I’m still around, current, and working on new material to empower their lives. Simple gestures such as posting inspirational quotes, thoughts of the day, and blogging can be highly impactful when done consistently. It makes it easier to encourage readers to purchase new works when I have kept in communication with them during the “in-between” process.

You wrapped up 2020 with a children’s book MANNY AND THE MAGIC KEYS: A Gift From Papa. Where did the idea for the book come from?

Believe it or not, I wrote “Manny And The Magic Keys: A Gift From Papa” approximately 4 years ago. The idea was inspired by my son, the real-life, Manny. When he was a toddler he was mesmerized by my father’s, his Papa’s, keys. Whenever I went to my dad’s house he would play with them and did not want to return them. Eventually, my dad gave him an old pair to take home and play with and that’s how the idea was birthed!  I have no idea why I took so long to publish the book. I think subconsciously I was afraid because children’s book writing is a new genre for me. 

One of the great things about that book is that it shows the importance of using your imagination. What do you hope the reader gets from that when they look at themselves?

I hope that young readers would embrace the reality that anything is possible, and that they should never stop dreaming!  A new reality is just one dream away!

In your book for adults AFTER THE BENEDICTION, we see how fear can hold us back. How have you not allowed that to be the case for you?

Honestly, I have allowed fear and insecurity to hold me back for years! I was bound by the fear of failure and looking foolish. One day I just realized that I was my biggest hindrance and I decided to not allow myself to be bound by fear any longer. As my Pastor always says, “sometimes you have to do things while you still feel scared.”  That is some of the greatest advice that I  have ever received.  I still feel scared sometimes about advancing in new arenas, but I’m not fearful to take the steps of faith despite how I feel.

What advice would you give for those looking to pursue their own goals and dreams?

My advice to those looking to pursue their own goals and dreams is to refuse to be their own hindrance! Each person should take time for moments of introspection to determine if they are the cause of not reaching their dreams and goals. Likewise, every dreamer needs to develop an action plan for the dream to become a reality.  A dream without an action plan is simply wishful thinking.

Can you tell us what we should expect next from you?

I am excited to be working on “After the Benediction II”, and I will be releasing another book in the “Manny In the Magic Key’s Series!” in the coming months. Likewise, I am researching opportunities to bring my two novels “After the Benediction” and “Mema’s Pretty Little Black Girls” either to the stage or screen.

Thanks for the time, Sherabim. How can our readers stay connected with you?

Cyrus it was a joy to do this interview with you, and I thank you for having me!  Readers can keep in touch with me through my website and on social media:

Facebook: @sherabim

Twitter:  @Sherabimjoy

Instagram: @sherabimjoy

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