INTERVIEW WITH BRENDA MOHAMMED BY IHRAF
WRITERS MUST LEARN TO MARKET THEIR BOOKS -– BRENDA MOHAMMED
Brenda Mohammed is the author of the popular, multi-award-winning, bestselling book titled “How to Write for Success”, She has won several literary awards in the USA, Peru, Kazakhstan, Seychelles, Nigeria, India, Argentina, and the UK, and made headlines in several newspapers around the world. In this interview with Wole Adedoyin, she talks about her life and writing career.
WA: TELL US ALL ABOUT YOUR WRITING BACKGROUND- WHAT YOU’VE WRITTEN, WHAT YOU’RE CURRENTLY WRITING.
BM: I started writing in the year 2013. I was a former bank manager and a Financial Advisor. Cancer struck and I survived miraculously. I wrote a memoir to relate my experiences and to advise readers that cancer is not a death sentence. It became a best seller. That encouraged me to keep writing and to date I have published 36 books. My last book, a psychological thriller, was published on March 10th 2021, so I have not yet decided what will be my next topic for my 37th book.I love to dabble in every genre and have written memoirs, romances, science fiction, mysteries, thrillers, children’s literature, self-help, and poetry. I have also compiled poetry anthologies and started a quarterly magazine for the “How to Write for Success Literary Network” of which I am the Founder.
WA: WHAT EXCITES YOU ABOUT A PIECE OF WRITING?
BM: Writing which is well expressed and filled with emotion excite any reader. I am excited about such writings.
WA: WHO ARE YOUR FAVOURITE WRITERS AND WHY?
BM: One popular writer whose books I enjoy, is Stephen King. His writing style is easy to read and his books are thrilling. I have also read many books by not so famous writers, whose writings are compelling to read.I would like to mention that one of the first books I read that inspired me for life was, The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale.
WA: WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO A NEW WRITER STARTING OUT?
BM: They should be patient and hardworking. I wrote a book especially for new writers, and it is also for seasoned writers. The name of the book is How to Write for Success. It is the book that inspired me to establish a Literary forum with three sub-forums and growing membership in excess of 11,000 members. This bestselling book received a five-star review from Readers Favorite one month after it was published in December 2017. In August 2019 it topped all the books in the Non-Fiction category of Connections E-magazine Readers’ Choice awards and won the gold medal in the category of non-fiction. It also placed second in all categories and won the silver medal. It is remarkable that my romance novel, STORIES PEOPLE LOVE placed first in all categories, and also won the gold medal in the romance category. It was a quadruple win. The merits of the book HOW TO WRITE FOR SUCCESS were featured in a review in the Ethiopian Herald Sunday Edition on February 16th, 2020.Alem Hailu of the Ethiopian Herald surprised me with this detailed review which he published.https://www.press.et/english/?p=19103
WA: WHAT INSPIRES YOU TO WRITE?
BM: I receive my inspiration to write from everyday life experiences. I observe a lot about what is taking place in the world and around me.WA: DO YOU HAVE A WRITING ROUTINE? A PLACE THAT’S SPECIAL?BM: I have a comfortable library with a computer and all writing accessories. I spend most of the day there when I am not shopping or in the kitchen. My husband is very supportive of my writing and he cooks lunch on many days and serves me in the library. That way, I can spend many hours writing with no time limits.WA: HOW, WHEN AND WHY DID YOU FIRST START WRITING?BM: I always loved writing from school days and topped my class in essay competitions. I graduated with a distinction in English language. When I worked at the bank, my superiors were always impressed with my writing and financial acumen. I was promoted to the Credit Department to prepare financial proposals for business customers, and many of my proposals were approved by Head office officials without question. I was later promoted to Managerial status and assisted in the business growth of the bank’s branches and towns to which I was assigned. I still did not think of writing as a career until my bout with cancer as I mentioned above.
WA: WHAT WAS THE FIRST PIECE YOU EVER HAD PUBLISHED?
BM: The first book I published was I am Cancer Free and it became a bestseller.
WA: DO YOU ADDRESS PARTICULAR THEMES OR ISSUES IN YOUR WRITING?
BM: Yes. I do. In many of my books you will see that I have addressed issues such as love, heartbreak, suicide, domestic abuse, revenge, kidnapping, life’s purpose, retirement, and others.
WA: HOW DID YOU FEEL WHEN YOU FIRST STARTED SENDING YOUR WRITING OUT INTO THE WORLD?
BM: To be honest, I was very scared. I was scared that readers would not like my writings. I was so wrong. I received many five-star reviews, awards, and accolades. Many books achieved Amazon bestselling ranking No 1.
WA: WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR IDEAS FROM?
BM: For the fiction books, I used my imagination. For the memoirs, they were all my personal experiences.
WA: HOW DID YOU GET YOUR PUBLISHER?
BM: I self-published all of my books on Amazon.
WA: TELL US WHAT KIND OF RESPONSES YOU GET FROM AUDIENCES.
BM: I won several literary awards in the USA, Peru, Kazakhstan, Seychelles, Nigeria, India, Argentina, and UK, and made headlines in several newspapers around the world.I was inducted into the Indie Author's Wall of Fame in the USA in January 2020.In 2018, I received two awards from Readers Favorite International in Miami for two of my books- Zeeka Chronicles and I am Cancer Free. Three of my books won gold awards in Connection EMagazine Readers’ Choice Awards - Zeeka Chronicles (2018], Stories People Love (2019), and How to Write for Success (2019).Several of my books received five-star reviews from Readers Favourite International, topped the charts of Amazon and attained Amazon bestselling rank No 1.I was recognised in newspaper reports in Trinidad and Tobago Newsday on 7th November 2018, 16th October 2020, and Trinidad Guardian and Worldnews.net on 20th September 2020. News of my success reached as far as Ethiopia where a journalist by the name of Alem Hailu interviewed me online on 17th November 2019 for the Ethiopian Sunday Herald. He also published a glowing and detailed review of my book How to Write for Success.
WA: HOW CAN PEOPLE FIND OUT MORE ABOUT YOU?
BM: I am on Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
WA: TIPS, TRICKS, THINGS TO PASS ON TO DEDICATED WRITE?BM: I will suggest that new and aspiring writers read my book, How to Write for Success, and join my How to Write for Success Literary Network on Facebook, to learn tips, tricks, and what it takes to become a bestselling author.
WA: ANY TYPICAL/COMMON MISTAKES THAT NEW WRITERS TEND TO MAKE?
BM: Many writers believe that after publishing their books they can sit back and relax and readers will rush to buy their books. If readers do not know about their books how can they buy them? Writers must learn to market their books to forums and places that are frequented by readers who are looking for good books to read. They must also be prepared to spend money on book promotions. Another mistake that writers make is to only publish the paperback version. While it is a known fact that paperback sales exceed those of kindle, kindle sales can cause your book to top the ranks on Amazon, become a bestseller, and pave the way for your paperback sales. It is always advisable to do both paperback and Kindle versions. The third mistake writers make is in determining categories. Some writers are using categories that do not match the content of their books. For instance, a poetry book described in the blurb as romantic poetry, or, an Anthology of adult poems should not be categorized as Children's Literature. There could be repercussions if a parent looks at the category only, and buy such books as presents for their children, only to realize they are for adults. Amazon has a section below each book to report such issues. Read all about this in the award-winning and best-selling book HOW TO WRITE FOR SUCCESS available on Amazon.
WA: WHICH OF YOUR BOOKS WERE THE MOST ENJOYABLE TO WRITE?
BM: I enjoyed writing all 36 of my books, but the one that has a special place in my heart is Zeeka Chronicles. Here is the book description: If you have not yet read Zeeka Chronicles, a futuristic thriller and award-winning novel inspired by the scare of the zika virus, you will be unaware of what can take place in the minds of mad scientists who try to use a virus to control lives. Dr. Stephen Sharpe, kidnapped as a child and raised by an evil man nicknamed Zeeka, who tried to use science for revenge, attempts to restore sanity to the island of Gosh, even if it means throwing his fiancé into the arms of his brother, who never knew him. It is a complicated tale where zombies and robots take center stage. ZEEKA CHRONICLES: REVENGE OF ZEEKA. written by multi-award winning and bestselling Author Brenda Mohammed, comprises five thrilling episodes set on a beautiful fictitious island named Gosh in the year 2036. This futuristic thriller was an award winner in the Category Young Adult Thriller in Readers Favorite International Awards 2018, winner in Science Fiction in SIBA Awards 2017, winner of the gold award in the category science fiction in Connections Emagazine Readers' Choice Awards 2018, and winner in the top ten finalists for science-fiction in the Author Academy Global Awards 2018. Readers Favorite International gave it a five-star review. Take a futuristic journey into the year 2036 with this mind-blowing, bold, and original 'other world' book, that will capture your imagination and keep you spellbound.
WA: TELL US ABOUT YOUR FIRST PUBLISHED BOOK?
WHAT WAS THE JOURNEY LIKE?
BM: As I said before, my first published book was I am Cancer Free. It was an emotional journey writing that book, as I had to recall the whole traumatic experience including the financial expenses involved.
WA: WHAT IS THE KEY THEME AND/OR MESSAGE IN THE BOOK?
BM: The key theme of the book is ,Cancer does not have to be a death sentence.
WA: WHERE CAN WE FIND YOU ONLINE?
BM: My Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/brenchri/, My website is http://allauthor.com/author/brenchris, I am on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/bcmohammed, I am on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/mohammedbrenda. My Twitter handle is mirroe.
ABOUT BRENDA MOHAMMED
Author of the popular, multi-award-winning, bestselling book HOW TO WRITE FOR SUCCESS, Brenda C. Mohammed, a former Bank Manager from Trinidad is a renowned multi-genre, bestselling, and multi-award-winning author. She holds a Diploma in Banking from the Institute of Bankers in London, and a Diploma in Life Underwriting from the American College, USA She qualified for the Million Dollar Round Table, the Premier Association for Financial Professionals, six times in a row. To date, she has published thirty-six books. Her genres include memoirs, science fiction, romance, self-help, mystery, children’s books, psychological thrillers, poetry, and poetry anthologies. Her self-help book, ‘How to Write for Success,’ became an important guide for new and aspiring authors. She won several literary awards in the USA, Peru, Kazakhstan, Seychelles, Nigeria, India, Argentina, and the UK, and made headlines in several newspapers around the world. Brenda was inducted into the Indie Author's Wall of Fame in the USA. in January 2020.In 2018, she received two awards from Readers Favorite International in Miami for two of her books- Zeeka Chronicles and I am Cancer Free. Three of her books won gold awards in Connection EMagazine Readers’ Choice Awards - Zeeka Chronicles (2018], Stories People Love (2019), How to Write for Success (2019).Several of her books also received five-star reviews from Readers Favourite International and topped the charts of Amazon and attained Amazon No 1 bestselling rank. She was recognised in newspaper reports in Trinidad and Tobago Newsday on 7th November 2018, 16th October 2020, and Trinidad Guardian and Worldnews.net on 20th September 2020. News of her success reached as far as Ethiopia where a journalist by the name of Alem Hailu interviewed her online on 17th November 2019 for the Ethiopian Sunday Herald. Brenda is also a poet and among her publications are seven poetry books, with one in bi-lingual – English and Spanish. Some of her poetry appeared in prestigious journals and anthologies in India, USA, Kazakhstan. Seychelles, USA, and other parts of the world. She is the Founder of the HOW TO WRITE FOR SUCCESS LITERARY NETWORK with Forums How to Write for Success, Poems for Suicide Prevention, Library of How to Write for Success, and Poems against Domestic Violence with 11000 plus members. Brenda is an advocate against Domestic Violence and Suicide, and together with several bestselling authors have published three anthologies for these causes. Her YouTube Channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbOiViRMRlzpTqyaO2VTBnAreceived over 119,000 views since inception. The Channel is for her Video Book Trailers, songs, and travel memories.