On August 19th I had the pleasure of interviewing Monica Marie Jones. Monica has authored books such as Floss, Swag, Taste of My Soul, The Ups & Downs of Being round, and Sweet Soliloquy. I invite you to come with me on a journey as we enter the life of one of Detroit’s most gifted Authors.
Kai: “Sweet Soliloquy” that’s your latest right? What’s the difference between Sweet Soliloquy and Taste of my Soul?
Monica: Taste of my Soul is like all over the place but I somehow squeezed it all into the concept of a full course meal. You have your grace, your appetizer, and your main course. I placed poems to fit into each of those areas. For example, the main course is the meatier poems; the appetizer is the more spiritual poems, and so on and so forth. Sweet Soliloquy, they all revolve around the theme in my mind of passion; whether that’s passion about your career, passion about your relationships, or passion about your family. They all kind of include that theme, so that’s the difference between the two; all over the place “Taste of my Soul” and more zeroed in on one theme “Sweet Soliloquy”.
Kai: I loved Sweet Soliloquy. My favorite three, now I loved them all but my favorite three were “One Breath”, “Ms. Jones got a love Jones” both laughing at that one, and “The Mask”. Tell us how you became Monica Marie Jones the Author.
Monica: Well I have always been extra. So I’ll say so emotional and creative. What I’ve found even since I was a little girl, the best way to capture all of my emotions or capture all of the madness that is myself is through writing. So when I was younger I had a journal. Like I had a journal in elementary school and as I got older I wanted to be a writer but I felt intimidated by the thought of writing a book. So I found that I could capture an entire story in a poem, on one page. So that’s when I started writing poetry in my 20’s. When I graduated College I said “If I can write a 30 page paper, I could write a book. So that’s what kind of gave me the confidence to say okay, let me push it farther or let me take all of my poems and put them together to create one book. So that was kind of my journey to being a writer. It’s always been in me but, you know, having the confidence, and taking all the raw materials that were created by emotions and making it into something that other people could relate
to as well.
Kai: So let’s say from the start up until now, what have been the challenges that you more or less face now that you didn’t face when you first started writing?
Monica: The biggest challenge. I’m so glad that you asked me that. I had an “Aha” moment yesterday. It’s like the more visibility that you get the more you want to build your brand. Sometimes we fall into a space of censoring ourselves and conforming to what we think people
want to hear, trying to live up to this image that we think people want to see. And in that you lose that raw creativity. You lose that authenticity, that realness about yourself. So now I’m struggling to make sure that I am writing just from my heart not censoring myself not worrying about what people will think. I feel like when people are that open and that real that’s what people are accepting to not some cook cutter, I’m not going to say bad words, I’m not going to try to ruffle feathers. That’s how people know that’s fake so I’m trying to get back to my real when I was writing when I didn’t worry about what everybody thought.
Kai: So in all the aspects of writing how important is networking?
Monica: Networking is so important; just this morning I had a meeting with someone. It’s very important because you share resources, you get new energy, and you get new ideas, you kind of shake up the patterns that are in your life. Alot of times people sometimes feel like “Oh, I need to hide my ideas, I shouldn’t share” but it’s by giving that we get. And so it’s you know the whole point of networking with like minded people or even people that are different from you because a lot of times that is what give you the inspiration to write and the ideas to promote that work and fulfill that work as you go.
Kai: So tell me three things that you want your readers to know about you.
Monica: The first one I guess is that most of my writings come from my experiences, that’s not to say that everything is a true story that happened for me but it comes from some emotion or experience and a lot of times it comes from the past. So hopefully, people can know that this stuff while it may be fiction, it’s real and if you’re going through it you’re not alone. So, I don’t know if that answers your question, that’s one thing about me is that a lot of my stuff comes from real experiences. The second thing that I really want people to know is that I am very down to earth, silly. Somebody who’s been a friend now for awhile said that initially when they saw my image they thought that I might be stuffy or stuck up or whatever. As they got to know me they’re like “Oh gosh, you’re really down to earth.” so I want people to know that while I try to create this brand and this image and that goes back to what we talked about earlier; I am very much a human that likes to have fun, that makes mistakes,
that goes through moments. Even though I try to always keep it positively going that I’m very down to earth. The third thing that I want people to know about me is that I am all about relationships so send me an email; talk to me. I love to help people, that’s what kind of feeds me, I feel like that’s my mission. Very emotional, I remember being so intimidated by famous Authors because I love to read, I could never send them an email. If I send it to them, they’ll never respond. I might take awhile but always send me a tweet, an email, or whatever the case may be.
Kai: Cool! So for up and coming writers, such as myself; you know Aspiring Authors what would you tell us? What nugget would you give someone like me?
Monica: Never stop. That’s something I told myself whether I’m trying to lose weight or trying to go to school. I had to apply that to my writing because there will be things along the way that will discourage you. You might get a bad review or just when you’re doing wonderful somebody has something to say but it’s like remember your passion, remember your purpose, and never stop. Keep going and do what you know is true to your heart. It’s not always about people liking you but about you being true to what your purpose is. If it’s that one life that you change or that one person that can get what you wrote then you are doing your job.
Kai: I’ll take that!
Interview by: Kai Mann