1) First, I want to thank you for taking the time to do this interview with me! When did you know that writing is what you were called to do? What is it about being a writer that you love the most? What about being a writer frustrates you the most?
Thank you so much for this opportunity. My name is Nicole “Jahzara” Bradley. I write under the pen names Jahzara and Nyree Chandler. I knew I wanted to be a writer when I was in preschool. My grandmother had an oral tradition of storytelling. Her stories were captivating. I knew at a young age that I wanted to tell great stories and hold my audience’s attention captive with my stories. I love telling stories and I love hearing from readers regarding what they have learned from my stories and how my writing has inspired them. Sometimes, I am frustrated with myself as a writer because I get stuck in my process from time to time, even though still I have a method to get unstuck and I teach this technique to other writers.
2) Can you tell us a little about your book(s) and where our readers can find out more about them and you?
I have written inspirational fiction: Never Would Have Made It: A Testimony of What God Has Done In My Life and Crazy Faith. Both books are anthologies. Love of My Life is a love story. It’s romantic but more importantly, it is about loving oneself and making decisions that can be tough but necessary. My Love Won’t Last Forever: His Wife is about a couple Nyree and Malachi. It is book three in a series, but one will not be lost if one began reading this book without having read the previous two, which are not in print at this time. In this book, you see a woman doing what is necessary to keep her family together. Typical Hood Story: 2 Raw and Uncut Stories are two tales from the ‘hood.
I am Nyree Banks on Facebook. Literary Jahzara on Instagram alsoJahzara Bradley on Instagram and TranquilBliss2 on TikTok.
3) Where do you draw your inspiration from for the stories that you manage to weave together and the characters that you create?
My inspiration for my stories has come from my life and what I have observed on this journey.
4) Do you have a schedule for when you write? Do you outline your novels? How long does it generally take you to finish a novel? What projects are you currently working on?
Yes, I schedule a time to write. I have it on my calendar for specific days and times of the week. Writing is my passion and one of my many gifts. I am a Literary Mentor who has a Literary Mentor. I will not write without a Literary Mentor. Working with a Literary Mentor has helped me go from years of writing a book to write and publishing a book in 4 to 6 months. I do outline my books. My outlines are not as elaborate as they are for educational research writing, which I enjoy, but nevertheless, I do have an outline. I find outlines necessary because as an author I have many stories to tell. I need to know where each story is going. This helps me to stay focused. Currently, I am getting my thoughts and ideas together for my next inspirational book, “I’m Still Standing.”
5) What’s the first book you ever read that really moved you emotionally? Who is your favorite author to read? What book are you currently reading?
The first book that I read moved me emotionally, that is a great question. I would say a 9th-grade year of high school, The Autobiography of Malcolm X. I have read this book twice in my lifetime. Terry McMillan is one of my favorite authors to read. I am currently reading Secrets of the Millionaire Mind: Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth.
6) What has been your most significant achievement as a writer thus far? Where do you see yourself within your career in the next five years?
Some of my greatest achievements as a writer have been receiving sponsorships and partnerships from Fifth Third Bank, Quiznos, and Mike Anderson Chevrolet to name a few. In the next five years, I see myself owning a Coffee and Book shop. I’d be remiss in not mentioning how ecstatic I was when Love Of My Life won the Distinguished Author’s Guild Literary Award for Romance in 2020, the same year Love of My Life was released.
7) How have you dealt with rejection within your writing career? What is your advice for other writers to better be able to cope or navigate their way through the publishing process, be it traditional or self-publishing?
I have dealt with rejection during my writing career. I was inspired by best-selling author, Shannon Holmes when he selected my story to be in his anthology. He encouraged me to write on my terms, and never let anyone paint me in a box. From there I went on to create my own publishing company. When I couldn’t find the results, I was looking for, I created them. That is my advice to anyone. Create the “yes” in your life even when they tell you “No.”
8) Do you find it hard to juggle the creative side of being a writer against the business side of being a writer, in terms of marketing and promotion and things of that nature? How hard has it been (or easy) for you to build up your author platform?
I love coming up with creative ways to market my writing. I embrace the challenges and won’t complain. My previous page Jahzara Bradley on Facebook had thousands of friends, but Facebook deactivated the page. So, I embrace this opportunity to rebrand and connect with new people.
9) What unique quality is there about you, about your art, that you feel represents your authenticity? How does writing help you to be more empowered in your purpose?
I am resilient and determined to “Make It Happen,” which is my mantra. One of my purposes in life is to make the world a better place and assist people with becoming better versions of themselves. This manifests when people come to me for educational consultations, book consultations, financial consultations, and massage therapy services. Writing for me is a gift and is therapeutic. I can reach people through written words when I can’t be in their physical space.
10) How can readers find you and your books?
My website is http://www.tranquilbliss.net