Despite popular belief, Black Girl Magic goes far beyond flawless natural hair, popular Instagram accounts, and awfully written think pieces. Black Girl Magic is a celebration of all of our wonderful undeniable characteristics. Black Girl Magic is about loving ourselves, reaching new heights, and proclaiming "Still We Rise" unapologetically. And for the last year, Black Girl Magic has become Black Girl Boss Magic. According to a new report featured in Fortune Magazine the number of women-owned firms grew 1.5 times the national average, and black women have blown that statistic right out of the water. The number of businesses owned by black women grew 322% since 1997 thus making black women the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs in the United States. How absolutely magical is that? This Black History Month Lifestoned Adventures will feature black women who are the true definition of Black Girl Boss Magic. These women are go-getting and trailblazers who are ready to take the world by storm Beyonce style. So ladies let's get in Formation and say hello to Ashley Coleman, the wordsmith behind Write Laugh Dream.
The #girlboss Behind The Magic
Ashley Coleman is a pen toter, world lover, and love advocate based right here in Philadelphia, PA. At 29 she is already the publisher of WriteLaughDream.com, a successful blog that encourages millennial women to love, dream, and grow in every aspect of their lives. When she's not writing incredible content like: The Things We Can't Take Away, she's a writing mentor through her very own online course Writer The Brand, the author of Dear Love, and the host of incredible events around the city including the Dear Love Brunch. I actually met Ashley at one of her Dear Love Brunches and when I say that it was one of the most uplifting, positive experiences I've ever had as a black woman and as a blogger, I mean that I probably should take Ashley's online course to learn how to write about that experience better. I had the opportunity to interview Ashley to learn more about her journey and hear her advice for other black girls seeking their magic.
S.O: How did you get started?
AC: Well, I have always been an avid writer and reader really since I was tiny. My mom always introduced me to great books and I got the bug then. I started as a journalism major at Drexel University and then ended up transferring and obtaining my degree in Broadcast, Telecommunications and Mass Media from Temple University. I randomly started blogging in 2008 and began to really take myself seriously about three years ago and it was one of the best decisions that I could have made. Started from a blogspot now I'm here.
SO: What is your experience as a black woman in your field.
AC: As a black woman in my field, it's actually been amazing. I think that the blogger world really embraces one another. Here is this medium that gave so many of us a voice and platform that we didn't really have in mainstream media and that really created a synergy for most of us. It's no secret that many of the top publications lack diversity and so in true black girl magic style we created our own lane.
S.O: What makes you magic and how will that magic change your field/the world.
AC: I think what makes me magic is my innate ability to encourage others. That's what my work has revealed. I love being able to encourage other women to become the most refined versions of themselves. I also love encouraging writers to see the true value in their words. That is a gift that I believe I have been given by God. And so I want to change my field by being the best at that. Through my books and through my courses and all those things, I want to help motivate a generation to be all that God has created them to be. And when we move in that way, well, the world has no choice but to change.
SO: Give us some Lifestoned Advice to other black girls in your field.
AC: Hone in on what makes you, you. It's imperative. In a time when we constantly know what everyone is doing at all times and the comparison game is on tilt. But I assure you that there is something that is uniquely you, your own perspective that you can bring to your writing and to your craft. I will never be Tony Morrison or Maya Angelou. They are already taken. But I will darn sure be Ashley M. Coleman. And don't worry if it takes you time to find out exactly who you are in your writing. Often times we will imitate first and then in the midst, our true voice will blossom. Keep writing. Write all the time. And read. Eventually you will hone in on your unique contribution to this space. That is what people will connect with.
Huge, HUGE thank you to Ashley for chatting with me. She posses the most positive energy I've ever come across. Check her out at www.writelaughdream.com and on Facebook and Twitter. Also, if you are interested in her The Writer, The Brand e-course for writers go check it out right now before all the spots are taken! bit.ly/twtbcourse.