One of my favorite places in the world and very special to my heart: A way of life, culture, and the terrific food is New Orleans. The Crescent City is the home of one of the biggest festivals celebrating African American culture and music life which is The Essence Festival.
The Essence Festival also gives events and seminars that are aimed at empowering African American men and women, and I was invited to one of them “We Read: A Fly Girl Mixer”.
With so much gracefulness and black girl magic, Toya Wright and publisher Myss Shan headlined the “We Read: A Fly Girl Mixer, an event focusing on reading, empowerment, entrepreneurship, and so much more. This event was last weekend during The Essence Festival, and it drew crowds from all over the world and especially little ole me from Tupelo, Mississippi. This literary experience empowered so many readers, young authors, and bloggers. Not to mention being in the room with a few celebrities that you have followed on social media for years was pretty cool. This event was everything. Book signings, mingling, good cajun food, and of course good times.
The panel included many black authors who are also entrepreneurs including Legendary LaQ’uita, co-creator of The Lit Plug, Jackie Christie of Basketball Wives, Darrin Dewitt Henson, actor, and poet; Tamika New House, creator of AAMBC awards and Executive Producer of The Words I Didn’t Say, and it was moderated by former NFL player and author, Jay Barnett.
This event was held in the art district of New Orleans at the beautiful Octavia Gallery located in Downtown, New Orleans.
I was completely taken away by the poem that Darrin Dewitt Henson freestyled in the closing of the mixer. It was one of my favorite highlights. “It’s okay to see another woman rise”. “It’s okay to support another woman that’s doing the same thing you’re doing” and “You have to make sure that you are whole before you can be a man’s half”, were jewels that Toya Wright dropped during this event.
I can’t wait to see what Myss Shan have up her sleeves for next year. I was introduced to a group of women who inspired to keep striving in pushing my brand and sprinkling this black girl magic.