Mind Under Troubled Waters with Author Sarah Carmele McGriff

 Sarah Carmele McGriff is a Registered Nurse, published author, and CEO of Feel The Reel Productions. Since school-age, years writing and reading has always been Sarah’s passion. Born and raised in Lakes Wales, Florida, her father was a teacher and her mother was a nurse. Not wanting to disappoint her family, she put her dreams on hold to obtain her A.A. degree in Nursing. Having a passion for helping others and her mother being a nurse, doing her job came naturally. Planning to get a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing as well as a certification for photography and videography is next on her agenda.

Under so much pressure from being a Registered Nurse, in 2017 Sarah decided to pick back up and write poetry. While facing many obstacles in 2018, Sarah began writing her first book ‘Mind Under Troubled Water’ which is available now on Amazon. The book focuses around a Black teen athlete who suffers from mental illness. The teen’s family had no desire to deal with nor face the family demons that plagued their lives which made his emotional distress at an all-time high.  

Who is Sarah Carmele in four words?

a. Resilient

b. Amazing

c. Dreamer

d. Loyal

When did you discover your passion for writing?

Since I was a little girl, I’ve always had a passion for writing. English and Language Arts were my favorite subjects in school. I always wrote poetry and short stories. I’m also an avid reader, immersing myself in the works of other authors to create my own stories.

As an entrepreneur and writer, how do you balance time for both?

Finding balance as a writer and entrepreneur has its challenges. I’m also a nurse, so my days are very erratic, and draining, at times. I usually dedicate my time after putting my daughter to bed to work on my writing and building my entrepreneurial empire. My family is very supportive; they help me take my daughter to school and her extracurricular activities. My daily mission is to assure that I am an inspiration to my daughter as far as achieving the goals and dreams that she wants to have.

What does self-care look like for Sarah?

Self-care, for me, is praying and meditating; reading a book; treating myself to some type of luxury, even just being lazy, or taking a nap, lol. As women, especially women of color, we are so engaged in the fulfillment of the lives of our families, friends, work, and businesses, we too often overlook our own personal needs. We cannot take care of others if our physical, mental, and spiritual needs are depleted.

You just released “Mind Under Troubled Waters”. What was the inspiration behind that?

I encountered a Black male patient who was admitted into the hospital. He attempted to harm himself because of a recent life-changing diagnosis he received. My heart grieved for him because he had no one to discuss his grief with; his family was not very supportive, and the care that he had previously received prior to me having him was subpar. This encounter reminded me that too many people in the African-American community suffer from mental illness, and they are often overlooked for care because their concerns are not taken seriously, especially in the healthcare field What message do you hope readers take away?

What message do you hope readers take away?

I wrote this book because it is imperative that society, as well as Black people, break the stigma surrounding mental illness, as well as address taboos that continue to plague our Black brothers and sisters, and children. My hope is that our community realizes that it is okay to discuss our problems with others and that there are many resources available out there.

What did the creative process look like for you?

It took four months to write my book. My inspiration came from my encounters with my patient, without violating HIPAA, and observing black teenagers in my area and on the Internet. I would write late at night when everyone in the house was asleep, and on some days when I had to be to work at 7 am, I would get up at 4 am and write. It was a struggle but God brought me through the process.

What is next for Sarah as we enter 2022?

I am currently writing a couple of short scripts that I plan to turn into films. I really want to work more on my cinematography and photography skills. I also would like to start working with other authors, particularly women of color, to turn their ideas into the film. I just want to live life and create memories with my family and friends.

Support Sarah by purchasing her work on Amazon.

Jakia Cheatham - Myles

CEO/Founder of Pretty Women Hustle Magazine

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