LaQuitia Thomas is an author, blogger, teacher, and poet. Within the last few years, she has released two books titled, Beauty from Ashes and Finding Happiness. When she is not writing books or poems, you can find her in a classroom filled with tiny humans by day and adding posts to her blog by night. Aside from that, LaQuitia loves spending time with her family and friends, photography, and shopping. She has a strong passion for encouraging, motivating and inspiring others to live out their best godly life possible. The evidence of which can be found on her blog at www.aboverubie.blogspot.com.
“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” -Maya Angelou
YVONNE PIERRE: When did you discover that you are a writer?
LAQUITIA THOMAS: I first discovered my love for writing during my freshman year of high school. My English teacher gave us the assignment to create our own poem after having discussed the various types of poetry. That poem planted the seed and I’ve been watering it ever since.
YVONNE: Tell us about your two books, “Beauty from Ashes” and “Finding Happiness”.
LAQUITIA: My first book is a book of poetry titled, Beauty from Ashes. I published it in 2015 and fondly refer to it as a unique collection of poetry birthed by God through myself, an undeserving yet willing vessel. My second book, which was published in 2017, is a 7-study Devotional titled, Finding Happiness. It is designed to help others discover (or simply be reminded of) their true happiness and contentment.
YVONNE: What was your greatest challenge with writing each book and how did you overcome the challenge to finish them?
LAQUITIA: I would say the greatest challenge I faced with writing both of my books was actually putting my work out there for others to see. The writing process came fairly easy, but when it came time to actually publish and sell my books, a little part of me became hesitant. Not because I wasn’t proud or sure of my work, but because once you put yourself out there you open up the door for judgment, opinions, etc and I wasn’t sure if I was “ready” for that type of vulnerability. I had to remind myself that it’s not about me. Sometimes you just have to do what God has called you to do without thinking twice or worrying about the end result because if not, you will spend your whole life wondering what was on the other side of your obedience.
YVONNE: What do you want people to walk away with after reading your books?
LAQUITIA: I want people to walk away knowing that there is a God who loves them beyond what they can imagine. His love is so great that it can take all of your ashes, broken pieces, and bad experiences and beautify them for your good and His glory. I want people to know that He is the ultimate source of happiness and apart from Him, you will never be truly satisfied. Ultimately, after reading my books, my desire is that you are pointed back to Christ. It never has been and never will be about me.
YVONNE: Every writer has their own writing process. What is your process?
LAQUITIA: So whenever I get the urge to write (most times it happens late at night when I should be in bed asleep), it usually starts out as random notes scribbled in my journal. Then from there if I feel led to turn it into a blog post, poem, or book I begin editing, expounding, and eventually typing it up on my laptop. Sometimes I play worship music while I write – with the volume turned down so low that I almost can’t hear it. Other times I simply write in silence because it helps me concentrate better. Writing has always been a form of therapy for me, so I treat it as such. I never pressure myself to write. I typically only write whenever I need to release what’s on my mind.
YVONNE: During the process of writing each book, what were some lessons you’ve learned about yourself?
LAQUITIA: In writing my poetry book, the main thing I learned was patience. After doing that poem activity in high school, I quickly began writing more. Once I got about 10-15 poems, I drafted up the “first draft” of my poetry book – complete with an about the author section in the back and a middle school portrait and everything. I showed it to my then pastor and he suggested that I write some more poems before publishing it, and I’m so glad I did. It took about eleven years between that first draft and Beauty from Ashes being released. It also taught me the importance of waiting on God and not rushing His timing. With my devotional book, I learned that my life is what I make it. I realized that although I may not be able to change every circumstance, I can change how I react to those circumstances. Only I have the power to make myself happy. Not my friends, not a significant other, not my parents, not my job; but for me. Once I really internalized that, Finding Happiness was born.
YVONNE: What words of advice would you give aspiring writers?
LAQUITIA: To all aspiring writers I say: Just write. Whatever it is you desire to get out, write it down and release it. Someone somewhere is waiting and needing to hear what you have to say. Even if you don’t feel adequate enough, even if you second guess yourself, even if you don’t feel like people will read it, do it anyway. Someone in the world needs to hear what you have to say. Trust that your words will reach who they’re meant to reach and just do it.
LaQuitia Thomas’ books are available at http://aboverubie.blogspot.com/p/books.html
You can also follow her on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/laquitiathomasauthor