JC: Hi Cassidy, we are JC Miller and M.R. Spain; otherwise known as Jess and Mo of Jess, Mo’ Books LLC. We are authors and the LLC founders of the indie boutique publishing company producing inspirational content that glorifies God. Currently, we have five published titles: Finding God in the Kitchen, I Am Rahab: A Novel (a three-part series), and They Call Me Gomer… We are working on other creative outlets, such as our periodical digital magazine, JessMoBooks, and a t-shirt design featuring our reading initiative, Black Girls Read.
Cassidy: Jess Mo’ Books has a lot coming our way. I’m looking forward to it!
What inspired you to write your book as well as pursue entrepreneurship?
JC: I adore Bible stories and have a sincere desire to bring unsung biblical characters into a modern light. For instance, my latest novel, They Call Me Gomer… was inspired by the book of Hosea. Gomer was the promiscuous woman the prophet Hosea was told to marry. She represented the people’s waywardness, and Hosea’s commitment to her was a symbol of God’s never-ending love for humankind.
M.R.: We were inspired by our faith, and the willingness to step out on it to pursue our dreams. We saw the vision, made it plain, and we are running with it.
Cassidy: Amen! Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
JC: My books are primarily about deliverance to the backslider. My intention in recreating stories like these is that all might realize God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Although we are unfaithful, He is the faithful lover of our souls.
Cassidy: Can you share one highlight from the book?
JC: Sure, in my latest novel, They Call Me Gomer… I decided, this time, to include some poetry. Many may not know I’m an aspiring poet. *laughs* Here are two separate poems from the book. The first is from the introduction, and this verse inspired me by the prophet Hosea. “Israel is swallowed up; now she is among the nations like something no one wants.”
In They Call Me Gomer…, the main character, Go-Go, feels as though she’s watching her life from the inside of a beast.
They call me Gomer, but who is she?
Another brown-skinned girl in this overpopulated world withdrawn in her own skin?
Invisible to men?
Misplaced amongst the nation…like a worthless thing.
A beast came and swallowed me whole.
I’m on the inside looking outside.
I hear with its ears.
I speak with its voice. A language, not mine.
I’m in a beast, or is the beast my mentality?
These were my invisible years.
This one is an even shorter one from part 6 of the book. Here the main character loses her diary and proceeds to submit her thoughts on pieces of a paper bag, which she uses to illustrate her current situation.
Brown paper bag letters
Words written for no one to see
Brown paper bag type situation
The trash in the street
Brown paper bag livin’
There go my dreams
I’m just hoping these brown paper bags don’t stifle me.
Cassidy: Beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing your poetry selections with us. *smiles* As a writer, poetry was and is still my first love.
Which character or part of the book was the most fun to write and which part was the hardest?
JC: Creating Gomer was fun, being that our personalities are opposites. Gomer said the things many wish they could and did things most would not. Beginning a book is always the most challenging part for me, but I stay in that pocket once I find my groove.
Cassidy: I agree. The beginning is difficult. It’s tricky finding the perfect starting point.
You’ve written quite a few books so far. Do you have any words of advice for other authors for combating writer’s block?
JC: The cure for writer’s block is to write. Write any and all things until something sticks. Maybe also consider keeping a diary and or notes.
Cassidy: A creative journal of sorts is a good idea.
Speaking of the other hats you wear, how is it being an entrepreneur? What are the best and worst parts of it?
M.R.: The best part about being an entrepreneur is having creative freedom.
The worst part about being an entrepreneur is that you tend to work more off-hours than you would if you were at a regular 9-to-5.
JC: I concur. *laughs*
Cassidy: You are right about that! *smiles* What advice would you give to entrepreneurs struggling to balance their life and business?
M.R.: When it seems as if success is very unreachable, don’t give up. Remind yourself that you already took those initial steps to fulfill your dreams, but be realistic with your goals, and remind yourself that you can manifest them.
JC: Set aside time for yourself. Even if it’s only for an hour or two a day, write or do something for your business and mental health. Baby steps are better than giant steps. Also, scheduling your social media posts for the entire week helps. I use the Crowdfire app.
Cassidy: Realistic goals and planning are surely assets for any entrepreneur.
What marketing techniques have you used to sell your books, service(s), and/or product(s), and which ones have been most successful?
M.R.: Amazon, Canva, Bonfire, and collaborations with other authors and entrepreneurs.
JC: Creating fanfare at least six months before your book releases helps. Get people involved with the anticipation by creating fun posts and great giveaways. And know that even when it feels like no one is watching, they are.
Cassidy: I’m sure an author reading this interview appreciates the words of encouragement. *grins*
Where do you see your business in three years?
M.R.: I see our business flourishing with more book titles, not just from us, but from other writers we have helped accomplish their dreams of becoming published authors.
JC: I see a complete catalog of diverse books, movies, and a series that not only entertains but inspires people to do and be more for the kingdom of God.
Cassidy: Then, we will be waiting in anticipation of what is to come. Thank you both for sharing your wisdom and vision with us! Please share your social media and business contact information, so we can support you both and stay connected as your new projects are released.
JC: Thank you for having us! I included our information, but any readers should feelsm free to reach out to us on social media. We are happy to hear from readers and authors alike!
Author JC Miller: www.authorjcmiller.com/links
Jess, Mo’ Books LLC: www.jessmobooks.com/connect