Cafe Sozo Interviews
Three Powerful Books and a Dynamite Author Kimberly Brooks!
Café Sozo: Hi Kim! I’d first like to thank you for coming by on behalf of Cafe Sozo and all of our viewers! If you’ve just stopped by…relax…get a cup of coffee, tea, hot chocolate or juice; whatever you choose and dig in to this review; it’ll Bless you! Wait…let me get my cup of green tea. We’ve so much to say to you; but first we want to commend you on your refreshing realistic writing style! So many authors miss that. You’re an educated young woman with a degree in English from a top tier university, graduated from a Bible Training Center, a minister of the gospel, run your own business, teach workshops and have three books. Whew! How do you do it and did we leave anything out?
Kim: Thanks so much, sister Elaine! It’s all done by the grace of God! Without Him I am nothing. He truly is Faithful in allowing me to live my dreams – dreams which He placed in my heart ever since I started writing and speaking as a little girl. To God be the Glory!
Café Sozo: A guy might meet you and say: “She’s fine, but does she have any time? (lol) What would you say about that?
Kim: I would say, Amen to that! But seriously, God has a way of helping me “make time” for someone special in my life. It’s all about prioritizing; and right now, since there is no one special in my life, doing God’s work and serving His people is my #1 priority. But when the right one comes along, then I’ll make time for him ;0) Besides, he’s going to be so busy doing his own work for the Lord as well, that we’ll have to make a special effort to make time for each other!
Café Sozo: Kim, we went to your website and read excerpts from all of your books and we were most impressed; how did it all start?
Kim: Well, I’ve been writing every since I was in elementary school. I love to write poems, short stories, and songs. I was a member of The Young Writers’ Group beginning in third grade. So I’ve always had a passion for writing. It wasn’t until I got saved – or accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior – at the age of eighteen did I then wonder what my purpose or calling was. God eventually revealed to me in prayer that part of my calling is to minister the gospel through the spoken and written word. So God allowed me to use my passion for writing to create novels and non-fiction works and also minister to His people.
Kim: Chocolate Pages is my mentor and publicist’s, Pam Perry’s, brainchild where she introduces fiction and non-fiction books written by African-American authors. She’s the founder of Chocolate Pages, American Christian Writer’s/Detroit Chapter, and she hosts the podcast. On Valentine’s Day, I and Christian author and radio personality, Vikki Johnson, were guests on Pam’s podcast show.
Café Sozo: Where’d you get that name? That’s cute.
Kim: Pam Perry created it. I think it’s cute, too.
Café Sozo: Let’s talk about your first book: “He’s Fine but Is He Saved?”
Where did you get that title? Now, what’s the story all about and tell us a little about the main character?
Kim: To be honest, God gave me the title for the book before I wrote a single page one day during early morning prayer at church. I was praying in the Spirit one morning along with the other saints and He said to my spirit, “You know that book you’re going to write?” “Yes,” I replied. “I want you to name it, He’s Fine…But is He Saved?” Then I said, “Okay,” wrote the title in my prayer journal, and that was it. To this day people tell me that what compelled them to buy the book is the title, and I know that it’s because God’s anointing is on the title. Also, the title speaks to the thoughts of so many women, or should I say what we should be asking ourselves when a fine brotha tries to holla. But sometimes, as women, we get so caught up in the “outer package” of a man – his looks, how he dresses, his material possessions – that we forget what’s really important, which is whether or not he is saved, and has received Jesus Christ in his life as not just his Savior but also his Lord.
The main characters in, “He’s Fine..But is He Saved?” are Sandy, Liz, and Michelle. Sandy is the baby Christian who makes a lot of mistakes with men, Liz is the “super-spiritual” one who feels she needs no man but Jesus, and Michelle is the glue of the group who wants to be married one day, but is trusting God and not throwing herself at men. Michelle ends up dating Pierre Dupree, one of the finest and most eligible bachelors in their church, and by the end of the novel the reader finds out whether or not their relationship develops into something special.
Café Sozo: Which books did you write next and why? Did it result from the feedback that you received on your first book?
After, He’s Fine…But is He Saved? I published a mini-book entitled, The Little Black Survival Book For Single Saints which is broken into six chapters explaining how to overcome sexual temptation, loneliness, impatience, insecurities, jealousy, and how to forgive others from your past. It’s a small, pocket-size book and the idea behind it is if at any given moment the enemy or your flesh causes you to feel any of these ways, then instead of pulling out that old “little black book” to make a booty call, or to call your ex-boyfriend, Ray-Ray, that you, instead, pick up this “little black book.” It is laden with pertinent Scriptures, practical examples, and prayers of victory, and it’s written in a very down-to-earth style so the reader can truly relate.
Next I wrote the sequel to, He’s Fine…But is He Saved? which is entitled, He’s Saved…But is He For Real? In this book Sandy, Michelle, and Liz continue in their plight of lifelong love and happiness. Sandy still makes mistakes with men (pray for her), Michelle ends up having to make a choice between two men – Pierre or David, and Liz ends up dating Minister Matthew Long, but Liz’s issues might cause her to lose her man of God. The reason this sequel came about was because of the response I got from the first novel. Even though I thought I “ended” the first book, so many thought I left it a bit open and wanted more. So there you have it….the saga continues with, He’s Saved…But is He For Real?
Café Sozo: We were surprised that you revealed so much about young women who are saved and in church and the fact that they seem more focused (though you never said that) on getting married than women who aren’t saved; is that your opinion and why?
No; I don’t think women in church want to get married any more than women who aren’t in church. I think a lot of women, in general, want to get married. Especially if you reach, say 30, and never been married. Saved or unsaved, a lot of women grow up picturing their wedding day and assume it will just happen one day, but if it doesn’t happen then a lot of them wonder what happened? I think even unsaved women, who may be in non-committed type relationships, secretly desire a commitment, or something that’s guaranteed to last a lifetime with a man who’s willing to commit. I think that’s why you got so many women shacking up with men, because they hope and pray their men will one day realize how great of a “wifey” they can be, and eventually pop the question. But when that day never comes, then you have a frustrated woman living with a man who gets to have the cow, the milk – everything.
Café Sozo: On a side note Kim; we met at prayer. How would you say that your prayer walk impacted what you are doing now?
I strongly believe my prayer life birthed where I am right now. As I mentioned earlier in the interview, God gave me the title of my first book one day during prayer before I even wrote it. God’s Word says that when we pray in the Spirit we pray out divine secrets, or divine mysteries, and that He will show us things to come. I didn’t know I would be where I am now as far as having had 3 books published by age 30, but God knew. He knew before the foundation of the world. And as i continue to stay plugged into Him and seek His Face concerning my life, I know that He orders my steps.
God, in His Divine plan, knows the end from the beginning. He has a perfect will for each and every one of His Children, and He wants to bring each and every one of us to that place known as the perfect will of God for our lives, but we just have to stay focused and stay connected to Him. Like 1 Thessalonians 5:24 says, “Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.”
Café Sozo: What the future looking like in terms of your Godly and Spiritual assignments that you can talk about?
Well, let’s see. They’ll definitely be more books – fiction and non-fiction. More ministry of the Word. And I am looking to turn at least one of my books into a play one day, and possibly a movie.
Café Sozo: Kim, we hate to end this exciting interview! Wow! You’ve shared so much. We will be praying for your Ministry, your books and that God continues to prepare hearts to receive them. We want to thank you for taking time out of a very compacted schedule to meet with us, Please before you leave tell us who are the people that you’d like to thank and who you feel has helped you to make it all possible!
Kim: I would like to thank God for making it happen, my parents, Lawrence and Lutricia Brooks, for their support, my big sister, Kelley, for being my biggest cheerleader, and Pam Perry for being not only my publicist, but a fabulous, God-send mentor and friend, my agent, Karen Solem, and my publisher, Glenda Howard from Kimani Press. There are many more to thank, but I’ll stop there.
Oh, and just to mention to your readers, they can pick up my novels, He’s Fine..But is He Saved? and sequel, He’s Saved…But is He For Real? at any major bookstore nationwide and on Amazon.com and The Little Black Survival Book for Single Saints can be purchased through Amazon.com or on my website, http://www.KimontheWeb.com which also features a movie-like book trailer and free excerpts. Also, singles are welcome to sign up for my free E-Newsletter, The Single Heart, on my website as well.
Oh, and one more person I’d like to thank – thank YOU, Sister Elaine Davenport, for interviewing me today. You are truly a blessing to the body of Christ, and to me!
CAFE SOZO: (lol) Kim, we’re indebted to you for taking time out of your busy schedule to stop in and chat with us! It’s just like you said earlier; we do it…(us and you) all by the Grace of God and we give Him the Glory for our work efforts…Amen!
Kim: Amen! I totally agree…it’s all about Him!
Visit Kim’s website HERE
View Kim’s Press Release HERE
It is with great pleasure and joy that I present to you; Author Robin Anderson, writer of Out of The Box- Releasing the Spirit Within!
Café Sozo Interview With Sister Robin Anderson
01/09/08 (Response from Robin)
WHY DON’T YOU LISTEN TO SOME MUSIC WHILE YOU’RE READING; RIGHT HERE:
It’s So Easy To Love You By Israel Houghton
Café Sozo: Sister Robin, we were very excited to hear about your book: Out of the Box – Releasing the Spirit Within !
That’s a really cool title Robin ; what does it mean?
Robin: To describe the title of my book, “Out of the Box – Releasing the Spirit Within” I have to describe “the Box” and then disassemble it. The “Box” is a package and represents a person. The package (person) and its’ contents are determined by the Creator, the person themselves, and outside influences. How the outside of the package is viewed is based upon the world’s (peoples) perception. Perceptions can be deceiving. The person can wrap his / her package to appear various ways to others and themselves is deceived. The person can layer their package with all the things of this world (both good and bad) and never look on the inside to discover who they really are. But, the Lord does not see as man sees, for man looks at the outer, but the Lord looks at the (inner spirit) heart[1 Samuel 16:7]. Until we look at our source of life (Spirit), the gift God has placed inside each one of us, we will never be fulfilled. We release the Spirit within ourselves when we submit ourselves to God, and develop a personal relationship with Him.
Café Sozo: What is it that made you decide to give to the world this powerful book?
Robin: Writing the book was a direct assignment from the Lord. I never aspired to write this book or any other book. In January 2000, the Lord spoke to me in an audible voice and said “You have a story to tell”. The Lord then proceeded to give me the title of the book: Out of the Box – Releasing the Spirit Within and the titles of each chapter. In the course of time, God revealed what each chapter was about and what He wanted me to write. When I think about how writing the book came about; I can only say, “Wow, look what the Lord has done!”
Café Sozo: Why did you need to talk about the Spirit within?
Robin: Again, that is what the Lord assigned me to talk about. However, I think that God used me to write this book because my life represented what a lot of people are taught through the “world’s system” – the pursuit of money and material gain. I followed “the rules” based upon the world’s way of doing things. I made; money and obtaining material goods my priority. Don’t get me wrong there is nothing wrong with money or the things that money can buy. The problem comes in when the things of the world take precedence over our true being, the Spirit within us. Most people neglect their Spirit (God’s presence within) and focus on what they can see, touch, or feel. This is totally out of the will of God. God wants us to focus on Him first, make Him the priority, not to idolize money or things. The Word (The Bible) tells us that we cannot serve two masters: both God and mammon (riches or material wealth) [Matthew 6:24; Luke 16:13]. The Bible also tells us not to idolize or worship anything or anyone but God [Leviticus 26:1].
Café Sozo: I’ll tell you that’s some kind of book…Wow! Have you received any testimonies as a result of it!
Robin: Yes, I have received testimonies about the book in person and through my website. I have been made aware of people who have received salvation and rededication through the book. That in itself makes me smile, but more importantly it makes God smile. Other testimonies have come from people who are already walking with God, and are now seeking a closer relationship with Him. There are also those who have experienced revelation and were able to release fears, pains, and unforgiveness.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO HEAR MORE MUSIC? WELL, JUST IN CASE, HERE IS SOME MORE BEAUTIFUL MUSIC:
Café Sozo: What kind of journey has the release of the book taken you on?
Robin: Writing this book was a journey because it forced me to relive some painful parts of my past. But, that was a good thing. It enabled me to face up to some things, let some things go, and move forward. Also, releasing this book has definitely taken me on a journey. This book writing venture is new to me and with learning new things there are always challenges. I could write another book on all the obstacles that I went through just to release this book. (smile) But, all in all I have grown tremendously from this experience. That is what life is about … learning and growing.
Café Sozo: Amen, that’s right Robin! Are there any additional impactful insights that you’ve received from people who have read your book?
Robin: Many of the people that I have spoken with who have read the book, have said that the impact has been positive. It has been both reflective and enlightening as well.
Café Sozo: So, is this a Ministry?
Robin: That is an interesting question. Yes, I believe this is a ministry. All Christians are called to minister (spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ). I believe that one of the areas that I am called to minister is through the written word of God.
Café Sozo: What kind of faith steps have you had to take in this endeavor?
Robin: This entire endeavor has been a Faith Walk. Whenever you go into un-chartered territory you are required to step out on faith. I tend to be more of an introvert, so I have had to get “out of the box” in a multitude of ways. I am finding out that in the business part of book writing, one has to get out there and open doors to let people know that you have a book available. When things get uncomfortable for me, I had to learn to give it to God. God always comes through and I give Him all the Glory!
Café Sozo: What’s next for Robin Anderson?
Robin: “New Beginnings through the Fullness of God”, that is what’s next for Robin Anderson. I am looking forward to all God has in store. I can tell you that God has given me a second book; it is a book on faith. I also believe that I have a teaching ministry, but we will have to see where God leads me.
Café Sozo: How can people get a copy of your book and how can they get in touch with you?
Robin: Currently, people can obtain copies of my book by check, debit card, or credit card through PayPal on my website: SHININGLIGHTWORKS.COM (CLICK HERE) The book is also available on the internet through the following retail distributors: Amazon,com (LINK HERE) , Abebooks.com (LINK HERE) , and Alibris.com. Wholesale orders are available by calling (248) 730-0867 or through the following wholesale distributors: Baker & Taylor, and BookSurge Direct. Additionally, mail orders are accepted by phone at (248) 730-0867. Please call or check my website: (HERE) frequently for my upcoming events and for updates of bookstores that carry the book in your local area. You may also contact me through email at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Café Sozo: Robin that’s good. You’ve obviously worked very hard to build some great networks. Congrats! We fully support because we believe that your book is truly cutting edge. Robin what are your hopes regarding this assignment?:
Robin: My hope is that whoever is lead to read, “Out of the Box – Releasing the Spirit Within” will come to have a personal relationship or a closer relationship with the Lord, release the things that are keeping them from fulfilling all God wants them to be, and will share the message (the Gospel of Jesus Christ).
Café Sozo: Certainly, you love God and I’d certainly call you a woman of faith. What is it that caused you to put God first in your life?
Robin: I guess you would say I had a wake-up call. About ten years ago, after obtaining the majority of my goals I got to the point where I felt dead or empty on the inside. I knew that more “stuff” was not going to fulfill the void I was feeling. I started searching and found God.
Café Sozo: Robin, that’s so true for many of us; but you wrote it down! We just want to thank you for sharing the good news of your journey and the completion of a great assignment…we look forward to reporting about your ministry work as you reach the world!
Robin: Thank you.
Café Sozo Interview With Brother Aaron Hopson
Café Sozo Interview With Brother Aaron Hopson
NOTED CHRISTIAN WRITER AND ACTIVIST AARON HOPSON AND HIS WIFE JULIA WHO PLAYS AN INTEGRAL PART IN HIS MINISTRY!
Brother Hopson, we were very excited to hear your Battle Ready Prayer CD some months ago when we read about it in a local newspaper. What is it that made you decide to give to the world this powerful CD? Can you tell us how it came into being?
Brother Hopson: Thank you very much Sister Davenport for allowing me this opportunity. To be perfectly honest I never set out to create a prayer CD which is what makes this CD so special and pure. Every aspect of the CD was divinely inspired and ordered by God. I was actually praying to God for direction concerning my books and He planted the CD into my spirit. He told me to bless His people with prayer which is the essence of a meaningful relationship with Him. The Battle Ready Prayer CD is all about developing a deeper relationship with the Father. It amazes me because people hear things on the CD that I never spoke. The Lord literally uses this prayer to talk with His people. They hear from the Holy Spirit because the anointing on the prayer is alive. The first version of the prayer was actually a prayer I recorded for my children that I play for them every night as they sleep. I confess the will of God over them and war on their behalf. The majority of battles my children face will never be fought because they have already been won in prayer. Prayer is a gift from God.
Café Sozo: I’ll tell you that’s some kind of prayer…Wow! Have you received any testimonies as a result of it!
Brother Hopson: To God Be the Glory, we have received hundreds of testimonies concerning the impact of this prayer including: preventing suicides, healings, salvation, restored fellowship, hope… to name a few.
Café Sozo: How long is the recording? The recording is 16minutes 28seconds. How many people have heard and or requested to hear The Battle Ready Prayer CD?
Brother Hopson: I will never know just how many people have heard the prayer which is what makes it so exciting. We have sent out over 70,000 CD’S but that does not include the amount of CD’s that have been burned, downloaded from the website, or shared.
Café Sozo: What impact has it had on the world?
Brother Hopson: The Lord spoke to me years ago while I was walking through the waters of Clear Water Beach in Tampa. Years before the Battle Ready Prayer was even a thought in my mind. As I looked into the water I was surrounded by a school of fish. Every where I walked the fish moved with me. Days later the Lord explained to me what it meant. He said countless souls as numerous as the fish in the sea would be won to Him through this ministry. So far the CD has reached 8 nations. I trust God that it will impact the world putting it on notice that our Savior lives.
Café Sozo: So, is this a worldwide Ministry?
Brother Hopson: Yes
Café Sozo: What kind of faith steps have you had to take in this endeavor?
Brother Hopson: It took a great deal of faith in order to produce the CD from the moment He spoke it into my heart. I had to make a decision to believe when people told me I was crazy for giving it away free. I had to believe when I had no idea how I was going to keep up with the many requests. I had to believe when I had no idea where the money was going to come from. The Battle Ready prayer is an expensive project. We not only produce the CD but we package the CD and pay to have it shipped. Postage alone is several thousand dollars. Even with the help of my family that has been extremely supportive there was so many times that I was tempted to sell the CD out of fear that the project could not be sustained. It took faith to stand on what God said and be obedient to His instructions. I praise God that over the course of time the project has gained many friends like you that have begun supporting this ministry in many different ways.
Café Sozo: What’s next for Aaron Hopson?
Brother Hopson: My journey is one that I am always working on the next project. As soon I complete one task the Lord is quick to give me my next assignment. Currently, I am working on two projects with a couple more waiting in the wings. The Lord put on my heart to write a book entitled “Surviving Christianity” which is a sequel to my book “Grace Is Not A Rocking Chair”. I am also working on a book and CD that is very dear to me entitled “Love Letters to God”.
Café Sozo: Tell us about your new book?
Brother Hopson: Currently, we have two books, “Grace Is Not A Rocking Chair”.
and“Why God Kept Saving Me”,
Café Sozo: What was your purpose in writing both of the books?
Brother Hopson: Why God Kept Saving Me is an excellent book for anyone that is searching for or struggling with their relationship with God. It is easy to find yourself in the pages of this testimony because the majority of the book was written while I was still struggling with my own relationship. The purpose of this book is to win the world to Christ. Grace Is Not A Rocking Chair is a message to the church that we must stop taking the grace of God for granted. The biggest threat to Christianity today is Christians. Through hypocrisy and double standards the word Christian is losing its credibility in the eyes of those we are commissioned to win. Packed with scriptures and overflowing with love this book is uncompromising and challenges Christians to be relationship people as opposed to religious people. The purpose of this book is to win the church to Christ.
Café Sozo: Where can we go to get copies of your books?
Brother Hopson: The best place to get the book is on our website: OUR SITE( click here) You can download sample chapters and other features.
Aaron: If there is anything that you wish to add please take liberty to do so here: I would ask that anyone who has been touched by this ministry, and is in a position financially to do so, to join us in reaching millions of people with this prayer by making a tax deductible contribution to Gems From Joy Ministries. P.O. Box 3128, Southfield Michigan 48037. I would also like to thank the many people that have supported this ministry in many different ways. Everyone matters and every little thing counts, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for doing your part.
Café Sozo: Certainly, you love God and I’d certainly call you a man of faith. What is it that caused to put God first in your life?
Brother Hopson: I was blessed with two wonderful parents that had a mind to introduce me to Christ at a very young age. Although my faith was tested and I veered far from the path it was my foundation that prevailed.
Cafe Sozo: Brother Hopson, what a journey you are On! Are there people in your life who you would like to thank who have been indispensable to ; that you would like to acknowledge?
Brother Hopson: I would love to acknowledge the people that have helped in this effort. My family is very involved in every aspect of this project from my wife Julia, my son Aaron, my parents Raymond and Joy, my brother Raymond III and his lovely family. I also receive a great deal of support from the many encouraging letters, donations, and other forms of support that I receive from the many people that have been blessed by the prayer. Most of all I would like to thank God for His divine purpose, plan, and provision for this great work.
Café Sozo: It’s been our honor to interview the man that has played such an integral part behind the Battle Ready Prayer CD and to hear about your ministry’s plans for the future!
Brother Hopson: Thank you so much Sister Davenport for allowing me an opportunity to address your vast audience. I appreciate you and thank you so much for your support. I would love to acknowledge the people that have helped in this effort. My family is very involved in every aspect of this project from my wife Julia, my son Aaron, my parents Raymond and Joy, my brother Raymond III and his lovely family. I also receive a great deal of support from the many encouraging letters, donations, and other forms of support that I receive from the many people that have been blessed by the prayer. Most of all I would like to thank God for His divine purpose, plan, and provision for this great work.