Author Spotlight: Natalie Johnson
Raised by a single mother, Natalie Johnson witnessed the struggles of motherhood from the undocumented single mother narrative and learned the importance of strength, resilience, and independence for a woman, especially a mother. Her goal is to create awareness of the emotional, mental, and physical hardships that women encounter within the role of mother as well as bring an understanding through dialogue to the feelings and thoughts that are considered too taboo to discuss even though they exist in a very real way. Let's take a moment to get to know Natalie better . . .
First, let’s get to know you a little better
Where would you go in a time machine?
I would go to the biggest lotto payout coming up and play those numbers! Lol
Which super power would you like to have?
The ability to absorb the powers of others… and use it for good of course!
You’re a new addition to the crayon box. What color would you be and why?
A swirly pink and purple with silver sparkles.
What’s your favorite old school jam?
"Feels Good" by Tony Toni Tone.
What TV show can you absolutely not miss?
I love my Ratchet Mondays - Love and Hip Altlanta and NY. I love Real Housewives of Atlanta and Married to Medicine. I also love Scandal and How to get Away with Murder. I also enjoy Family Guy… don’t judge me… I find it hilarious! Those are all the shows on my DVR.
If someone wrote a biography about you, what do you think the title should be?
Walking In Natalie’s Shoes
Now, on to your writing
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I always knew, it just wasn’t what you pursued in a Caribbean household. A nurse, doctor, lawyer… maybe but writer? No. I had to pursue all these other things before I finally decided to get my degree in Journalism. Then I realized that I wouldn’t be able to write or cover what I wanted, so I attained a degree in Communication. I was still recreationally writing and performing spoken word at the time. Years have gone by since I got my degrees and it hasn’t been until having one hell of a year that I was able to i
indulge my talents and focus on the creation of this book.
What inspires you to write?
My desire to change people and to change the world. I have a strong sense of social responsibility and love helping people in whatever capacity I can. At first, that was through poems. I used to write about the dilemmas of others and even write love poems for people to give to their person of interest. Now, through my upcoming book, I’m addressing issues of womanhood and motherhood. I’m sharing the stories of women from all walks of life so that we can enlighten, encourage, and empower each other.
What genre do you write and why?
I think I’m going to be all over the place! I’m going to write until I find my niche. Right now, I’m focused on what is inspiring me.
Do you have a set schedule for writing, or are you one of those who write only when they feel inspired?
In the past, I used to write poems whenever I was inspired but with this book, I’ve learned how to schedule my writing, especially because it involved a lot of research.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I have no idea!
What, according to you, is the hardest thing about writing?
In my current project, Walking In Her Shoes, the biggest challenge wasn’t writing at all. It was scheduling interviews. When it comes to writing, I think the hardest part is just getting started but once the ball starts rolling, you’ll be fine!
How do you select the names of your characters?
I don’t have characters, I have participants. I chose them through social media interaction and my personal circle. There were people I personally knew whose stories I wanted to tell so I immediately asked them. I then sent out postings about my book project to see who would be interested and I got an amazing response!
And just a bit more
As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar/spirit animal?
It would be a Phoenix. I love the idea that they die but are then reborn from their ashes. That represents me. I am always reinventing…. Always.
How do you think it will feel when you publish your book?
I know I will be excited and proud! It's been a long time coming and this book kept me sane and grounded when I was going through a very rough time. The death of my marriage was the birth of this book. Seeing it published is the celebration of me!
Can you tell us about your current projects?
I’m currently creating a book trailer. I’m super excited! I want to make it so much like a movie that watchers can’t tell the difference. I’m collaborating with different people and adding their talents to the project. I’ve been blessed with some really insightful people so can’t wait to see how that comes out.
Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors?
I haven’t been reading much lately… life does that to you, but one of my favorite books is The Five Love Languages.
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
Start writing now! Sharpen your talents! Learn all about the power of social media and network like crazy!
Any advice you would like to give to aspiring writers?
Just start writing… allow yourself to get lost in your writing because then you will find your way to your main idea.
What does literary success look like to you?
Changing peoples lives, speaking engagements, book tours, amazing collaborations, and financial freedom.
Thank you, Natalie, for sharing your story with us! We look forward to the release of Walking in Her Shoes. To learn more about Natalie, visit her website at www.nataliesjohnson.com.