From Long Beach Ca, Shaleea Venney is a 3 time bestselling Author, Speaker, and host of the Girl Which Way?! Podcast. She is also the President and Founder of Venney Girl Inc, a nonprofit organization for at-risk young women. Through Venney Girl Inc, she is making a difference one girl at a time, through summer camps, mentoring programs, conferences, and workshops, which are always completely FREE for all of her girls. Known as the “Teen Girl’s Champion” she is a trusted force in the lives of many young women. Once a teen mom, Shaleea has devoted her work to reaching young women and helping them to rise above their circumstances and blossom.
She wrote and published her 1st book of Poetry: Love Letters to Jesus in 2o13 and began keynote speaking at conferences, churches, and schools. People began to solicit her to help them with their important writing tasks. She has helped many people write touching and beautiful wedding vows that genuinely fit each individual. She’s helped numerous people land their dream jobs by revamping their resumes and coaching them on how to nail their job interviews. She coaches other authors on “authorpreneurship” and edits their manuscripts. She has even helped grieving families lay their loved ones to rest with beautiful home going poems, obituaries, and words.
Mark Twain once said that to write well, one must “Write what you know”. So, she shares her God-given ability. What everyone said was her biggest downfall (Being a teen mom) is her greatest assignment. It is her passion and purpose to reach young women and keep them on the path to unlocking their wildest dreams. Now the host of the Girl, Which Way?! Podcast, she is extending her reach globally.
As the President and Founder of the Non-Profit Venney Girl Inc, she reaches young women and those at risk, and provides them with the needed tools and support to succeed, even when the odds are stacked against them. She is living proof that how you start has nothing to do with how you finish and that “You are the author of your own destiny, write your story beautifully.”
PWH: What inspired you to start writing?
SV: When I was little, I’d write in my diary. I was the kid who actually enjoyed having to write essays in English class. It was therapeutic. It was the thing I felt I did better than anything else. I tried to find another career, but I could never get over my first love- writing. It’s who I am. Writing chose me. PWH: What inspired your first book of Poetry Love Letters to Jesus? SV: I was having a conversation with my husband one day during a stressful time. He mentioned how hard life can be and how it can seem as though you can’t get ahead. You move two steps forward and get knocked 4 steps back. He said,” The devil is always working!” I shouted “So fire him! Who says he has to work on you?” That conversation inspired me to write my poem You’re Fired! Once I wrote You’re Fired, the book came together in a week! I had just been waiting to write it all along.
PWH: Years later, you are now a 3-time Bestselling Author, how does that feel?
SV: Wow! It feels amazing! It’s a literal dream come true. I am so blessed. I wrote Bestselling author on my Vision board and 6 months later it happened. The fact that people actually like reading words that I have poured out of my heart, sets my soul on fire! PWH: Not only are you an Author; You are a Mom and Speaker, how do you balance? SV: *Laughs* Thank goodness my kids are teenagers now. They’re 16 and 13 so they are very understanding and helpful. I often include them in some way. Whether it’s the planning, practicing speeches, or helping on the day of the event. My husband and my kids are my biggest fans, and they are all very proud of me.
PWH: What does success mean to you? What is the definition of success?
SV: Success to me, means using your gifts and abilities. You have to find what you love and what you’re meant to be doing. We all have a calling. That thing you love so much, you’d do it for free, use that! You could make a million dollars a year and be miserable. It can’t be about money or fame. If you can do what makes your heart happy and fulfills you at the deepest level, THAT is success. It’s a bonus if your gifts can help others. Even if you can’t do it full time, if you find a way to balance your full-time work with what makes you happiest, you have found success.
PWH: Bonus: What, in your opinion, are the most important elements of good writing?
SV: This is going to sound cliche but, I believe to write well, you must write what you know. If you can write about what you’re passionate about, you will be an amazing writer. The best writers write from somewhere deep down inside of them. You can smell, see, touch, hear, and taste their words because they are detailing their passions on the page. I believe we are all great writers, some just haven’t found their muse.
To learn more about Shaleea Venney and her work visit her site https://www.shaleeavenney.com/