I know, it’s been over a month since I wrote in my online diary and shared my life with you. I decided to take a much needed break from the digital world and focus my attention on other life and business ventures. Before anything else, I’m a writer first and trust me I’ve missed blogging, but in order for me to grow I needed to take some time off to become a student of life again and increase the value of what I know.
Never stopped working.
Just changed lanes.
There’s been some big changes in my world and I’m super excited to fill you in on what I’ve been up to lately. It’s Sunday afternoon. Our fave time of day. Sit back, grab a glass of Kool-aid and relax.
Several months ago I wrote a post called Writing for Hollywood Ain’t Easy which talked about my dream of completing my first screenplay, the film version of my best-seller Everything I Couldn’t Tell My Mother, along side my co-writer. I talked about this massive new arena I knew nothing about and how scurrrred, yet thrilled, I am to dive into deep waters. Girl, I am so happy to tell you that progress has been made. My co-writer is a true professional through and through. While I admit, he has written most of it and is spearheading this project, I have maintained creative control and appreciate his ability to get my thoughts down on paper so vividly. If you thought the book was poppin’ then I cannot wait until you get a taste of the film. We’ve decided to switch things up a bit so we can keep you on your toes. I know people hate when the movie is different from the novel, but it was necessary. I recently connected with Sean (my partner) to get my hands on a physical copy of our third draft and of course I’m literally freaking out that this is all coming together. Bish, ain’t nothing standing in my way!
Next up, if you’ve been creeping my social media, then you’ve probably heard me mention my friend Lenny Willams quite a few times. Lenny is a Professor at New Jersey City University and we met on Instagram at the top of this year. If you didn’t know, I am a networking maven. After having some mastermind sessions together, we decided to host an event in Toronto called Dealing with the Unexpected: 7 Strategies to Help Turn Opposition into Opportunity. All 20 seats sold out in a matter of 2 weeks and we had an awesome time. Look out for the recap video on my YouTube channel by the end of this month.
After the event, Lenny and I prepared for our private dinner for 30 of my closest friends. I wanted to introduce him to the tastemakers of Toronto and show off what we really had to offer. On the guest list included my big brothers Playwright Darren Anthony, Brand Architect Adam ‘I Won’t Lose’ Ali, Realtor & Investor Aaron Charles, and some of my big sisters included Canadian Olympian Alisha Tatham, Dr. Nekessa Remy and Celebrity Make Up Artist Sher Torres.
So the night was planned down to the very last detail. Once the guests arrived I gathered everyone in a big circle and each one of us shared our name, profession and had to answer the question: What makes you dope? It was a great way for us to connect and learn about each other. We laughed, of course when my turn came I cried (bc I was so overwhelmed with joy) and following the opening activity we mingled and dived in to a 4-course dinner created by the private chef I hired for the night. This was my treat to all the people I love.
The next weekend I was off to New Jersey, Philadelphia and New York for a much needed vacation. Only, it turned out to be a work trip (y’all know I cannot go somewhere and not work). I purchased a ticket for my kid sister too (shown on the very far left of the above photo) which I was super excited about because she is my everything and I love exploring the world with her.
First, we flew through NJ and took a train to PHL.
Back story: I mentor a beautiful 16-year old named Brooklynn who I met while speaking at a conference in DC. We stayed in touch (because you know I take my role seriously) and I surprised her for her Sweet 16 birthday party in February of this year. Brooklynn dances for a prestigious school of arts in PHL and every year they prepare for a huge dance recital. Her mom told me that it was around the corner and extended the invite. So obvi I hopped on a plane and made it a point to be there for my girl.
She did an amazing job.
Next, we took a Megabus to New York City where my aunt and friends were awaiting our arrival. I love Toronto, but my heart is in NYC. I love the hustle and bustle. I love the different types of people and I love the opportunities that rise from my time spent there. The last time I was in NY I met with the Relationships Editor at ESSENCE Magazine. This time around I caught up with old friends including Rakia Reynolds, Founder of Skai Blue Media. She is one of the hardest working publicists I know…. and the flyest. She recently spoke at the United Nations Media for Social Impact Summit, she’s also a contributor for Huff Post and Forbes Woman and is a regular correspondent on HSN. Did I mention that one of her clients include Tennis superstar Serena Williams? So dope. We also originally met in Washington DC.
We met at Starbucks on 31st and 7th. Looking simple and chic, she walked in with the utmost confidence and beauty. She’s definitely one of my role models and big sisters. So I couldn’t leave NY without connecting with her. We discussed plans to work together next year. God willing, it will work out perfectly. The plan is for me to expand my brand on a wider platform across North America and to play up my strengths as much as possible to grow my audience. Our next meeting is scheduled for November at her office in PHL to map out a game plan. Lord knows it pays to have strong women in your circle and having Rakia in mine is a blessing.
While I was locked into several meetings, kid sister did some sight seeing.
I came back to Toronto more tired than ever, but it was worth every second. Made some good connections, ate some good food and will be back again in a few weeks. If you want to succeed you have to do some things you’ve never tried before, step out of your comfort zone and just go for it. I’m so happy about my growth. I’m a girl who is fighting for her dreams and winning. Life may not always go as planned, but I’m sure as hell having fun creating them.
Peace & Love,