We had the good fortune of connecting with JustDaMessenger and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi JustDaMessenger, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
Early on, I realized the power of having a strong team behind me. The most important factor behind the success of JustDaMessenger is the community that surrounds the vision. Individuality is embraced, however, having a core group of partners to bounce ideas off of, to reflected with, and to celebrate victories with is vital to the continued progression.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
What started as just a hobby has transformed into a life of its own. There was never a desire to be a world renown writer. Like many writers, a myriad of journal writings and phone notes were collected over time. To compile the writings into a physical book was just a bucket list task. In 2019, Streams of Consciousness: Submerged was released, officially checking that box.

In the same year, Stream of Consciousness: Hoodie Season was released, solely created as an outlet, being something positive to focus on during a career transition.

The same period saw an exploration of spoken word and slam poetry, gaining invaluable experience of that of aspect writing and performance culture.

2020 brought about a tremendous shift in intentionality for JustDaMessenger. Partly in response to needing community during the start of the pandemic, a small text group was created to participate National Poetry Month 30 for 30. Stemming from that moment was the opportunity to “assemble the avengers,” converging individual voices, styles, and energy toward publishing our first book as a collective, Stream of Consciousness: Vol. II Hoodie Season.

As a testament to creative opportunities made available through the process, the team was able to partner with a local brewery, Tarboro Brewing Company, to craft a beer, “Hoodie Saison,” that accompanied the book release. In the same, recently, the writing has led to the opportunity to open up for Rupi Kaur at one of her stops of her world tour.

Our biggest lesson was to “bet on yourself.” One has to be willing to invest in their vision. Additionally, double downing on the sentiments, it’s important to have a team. While many proclaim to be “self-made,” embracing community is valuable.

JustDaMessenger is continuing to expand. Our aim is simply storytelling. There are more seasons to be written. In due time, those stories will be told.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
A mandatory experience is a yoga session at Willow Tree Yoga.

Following, each day has to begin with coffee! Thankfully, there are several options to visit each day, including Larema, Nabs Deli and Coffee, Trax, Books and Bean, and Tarboro Coffeehouse.

My lunch go to’s?

Blanches Bistro is a consistent option. In the same lane is D-Chill Spot for Jamaican dining, Moe and D’s wings are a must, or, if I’m keeping it simple, then Angelou’s Pizza it is! (My order: Classic cheese pizza with hot honey drizzle.)

As a fan of beer, it’s imperative that my friend accompany me to breweries housed here in Rocky Mount and surrounding area. I specifically would venture to both Tarboro Brewing Company (of course to have a Hoodie Saison) and Spaceway Brewing.

My top three dinner spots in the area:
Prime Smokehouse
Tap 1918
On the Square

Eastern North Carolina overall offers many hiking trails and rural landscape. If we’re looking for a taste of the city, then the Raleigh-Durham region is just shy of an hour drive. My inner child makes a trip to Boxcar Barcade an obligatory destination.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Edward Benton III and Korick Sisomphone serve as co authors of our book, Stream of Consciousness: Hoodie Season Vol. II. I would particularly like to thank them for being true brothers. Through the process, they both pushed me to be a better version of myself. They continue to foster a space where we can be vulnerable, make mistakes, challenge one another, and overall display love.

Website: JustDaMessenger.org

Instagram: JustDaMessenger

Twitter: JustDaMessenger

Facebook: JustDaMessenger

Youtube: JustDaMessenger

Other: JustDaMessenger2017@gmail.com

Image Credits
The photo of me signing book: Camry Green (@camrygreen on insta)

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