Willing. Available. Ready. (Author Interview)

‘Willing. Available. Ready.’ looks like a great self-help book.  Can you tell us a little about the book and who it’s for?

Yes, indeed, it is a self-help book that comes with proven experiences that can help people to overcome their fears to achieve their full potential in whatever they are doing or want to do in life. The book is definitely a wake-up call, a thought-provoking step by step guide aimed at everyone who has (or had) struggled to find a way out of troubles, recurring problems or just in their life. Though I would say the book is mainly for Christians because of the biblical references that are used, a great part of the book addresses everyone who is looking for answers to achieve a goal, because the number one blockage in each person, irrespective of their belief or background, is not external… it is the fear that is instilled to us from childhood. There is no age to feel the fear to do something that is important to us. Everybody, at some point in life either turns around, not knowing what to do… and the book actually teaches people that when nothing seems to work (which is the title of chapter 5), then stop everything. Most of the time, people have a counteraction, trying to force things to work. The book tells us not only why we should stop and what we should do instead. And this is not something only Christians need to know. The book also speaks about keys to success… but not as wealth-sellers do, but in a way that brings everyone to reflect on what they have been doing with what they already have. Sometimes, the keys to success are much closer than we think, unless we know how to locate the keys, discern that those keys are exactly what we need, many doors can remain shut, leading to unfulfilled and frustrated lives. This is a book to make every reader reflect on what they have been doing… and thus through biblical examples that worked, find solutions to their own problems.

How did you come up with the concepts in ‘Willing. Available. Ready.’?  
This concept came as I took time to observe the young people in our church. Many people live as if they have no purpose. I saw many of them trying different things and they kept failing. So, I concluded that they were willing to see a change or see something happening... a breakthrough, success… anything that could bring real meaning to their lives. So, the problem was not about their willingness to achieve their goals. However, how many of them showed they were available to pay the price for it? The same, our society has become to contented that it is difficult for people to receive! Are we always ready for the things we dream for? Many people would say they are. Well, the book can challenge us to see how unavailable are unprepared we are to get what we want in life.

The book is not there to just prepare a book for people to eat. No, it is purposely constructed to bring each reader to reflect and wonder: Ok, I want to do this or that… but as I keep reading it looks like I have not been available for it, so how can I ever achieve my goal? It looks like I am not even ready for it… so it this goal is achieved today, how will I be able to manage it. I have seen young people getting a job after many years of joblessness, but they ended up losing the job because they kept going to work late. It is simple: they were not ready for what they wanted!

What will readers get out of your book?

Solutions and answers coming from their own analysis of where they are right now. What they are doing that is not enabling them to move on to reach their own goals in order to alleviate frustration and stress. There is nothing worse than living a life without a purpose… a life where everything looks like it is set for you not to see anything new that can give that spice, whether it be at work, in marriage, with children or even financially, we need things to move, to evolve, to make us feel that we are alive. That is the reason why the title is WAR to LIVE… we have to fight to live or should I say to feel that we are alive.

What inspired you when writing ‘Willing. Available. Ready.’?   

What inspired me the most is how unavailable and unprepared people are for what they are hoping for. I remember when I was preparing my PhD and I became pregnant… it was out of question for me not to pursue because I was now a single mother. Out of question. I took one more year, but I did complete it. Was it easy? Certainly not… but looking back, I know I was not only willing to have a PhD, but I had to pay the price for it by making myself available despite having a baby in my arms, as I submitted it when my child was 7 months. And all that could not happen if I was not ready to face the tides of being a single mother, working part-time and studying part-time. Yes, it was WAR to live. So, I believe that my inspiration comes from partially my own experience. Today that child is in university and doing great. Glory be to God for that. But I also believe that working with young people in their 20s and 30s has been the greatest inspiration lately as I want to tell them: find the strength to get what you want within you. Nobody ever pushed me to go university. From the age of 19, I was living alone and babysitting in Paris in exchange of an independent room. Did that stop me from partying? Certainly not. I used to go out partying from Thursday to Sunday with friends. But when the times for exams came, nobody would get hold of me… I had a goal! And among all those friends, today I am the only one who ever completed their study or did not change the course of study. Some who wanted to become lawyers ended up becoming nurses… That is what happens when we are willing but not available and ready for our goals and purposes.

When did you decide to become a writer?
Obviously because my PhD was in English literature, I read a lot of books during the four years I took to complete it. Besides, to earn a living during my studies, I used to work for a communication agency, reading books and writing synopsis that were then sent to diverse producers in order for them to choose books to produce movies.

The more I read other people’s books, the more I started liking the idea of becoming a writer. My first book was based on my PhD. That book was later bought by one of the biggest Publishing House in Paris and it is now listed among books that the ministry of Education recommends using to teach secondary students about slavery, as it was about slave literature. Then I wrote some essays and later after that, I wrote a novel. Then when I became a pastor, I started writing Christian books. WAR to Live is my second Christian book.

As you can see, I just like to write… So, it is something I do naturally, and I can move from a genre to another.

When writing ‘Willing. Available. Ready.’ did anything stand out as particularly challenging?  
Oh yes! I started writing this book back in 2017… and for almost a year I had no inspiration at all. I did not know how to structure the book. You see, when I wrote the novel, in my mind I knew where I was starting and where I wanted to land. The same, writing an essay, you have a form of a structure. Now for WAR to Live… the challenge was that I had set myself to bring to people a thought-provoking book, with no accusations, no judgmental approach, no undermining of what they might have done that have led them to be stuck. Now… how do you put that in words? It sounds much easier than it was. So yes, you have to go from some fundamentals before even asking people questions and trying to offer venues for an answer. Thank God, after many months, I finally was able to finish the book after meeting a lady who actually, in a discussion, gave me some clues while not aware that I was actually a writer. You see, when writing, the most important is to be very observant and attentive to details, as my inspiration jumped back after that meeting. And I could finish the book in two months, structure it in a way that could make it ready to be read by others.

What do you like to do when not writing?
I travel a lot for ministry now. I also work as an education advisor in London, helping children who are out of school because of learning difficulties or behavior issues until they are found a new school. And what I like to do the most is spending time with my lovely boys because they inspire me a lot in their different ways.

Where can readers find out more about your work?

All my latest books are on Amazon, some are found on Barnes and Noble, www.rhemapublications.com