Charron Monaye is the thought-provoking writer, playwright, and creator of The Adventures of Michelle children’s book series. For her collective works, Monaye received numerous honors, including being appointed as a “Fellow of the Most Excellent Order of International Experts (FOIE)” in the United Nations and the recipient of an Assembly Resolution from the New Jersey General Assembly, Citation from the 31st New Jersey Senate, and a Library of Congress poetry winner. Since 1992, Monaye has contributed to the arts, entertainment, music, and media industries by putting their thoughts to paper.
Monaye has authored over twenty-five books in six different genres, served as a staff writer for CNN iReport and The Philadelphia Association of Paralegals, contributed to twenty book compilations, and created and produced five theatrical productions and one short film. Her stage play, Get Out of Your Own Way, is her most successful play to date, with premieres and sold-out audiences in Hollywood, CA, and Times Square, NY.
Since 2019, she has shared her gift of exceptional writing with various individuals, organizations, and celebrities by partnering to serve as their ghostwriter. In addition to her success with writing, Monaye is the founder of Pen Legacy Publishing. This groundbreaking literary company provides a platform to elevate the voices of aspiring writers through book publishing and scriptwriting.
From its inception in 2015, Pen Legacy has published over one hundred books, with some becoming Amazon Bestsellers and others generating corporate deals for authors.
Furthermore, Charron Monaye is the woman behind the successful author careers of Ms. Evelyn Braxton (Braxton Family Values), Precious L. Williams, Esq. (Corporate Trainer with BMW, MasterCard, and Pitch Coach for the TV show, Shark Tank), Ty Johnston-Chavis (Ty Johnston-Chavis, p.g.a – TV & Film Producer, TV Showrunner), and Debbie D. Douglas (Talent Recruiter for Paramount Network) to name a few.
Monaye has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from West Chester University, a Master’s in Public Administration from Keller Graduate School of Management, a Certificate in Paralegal Studies and Life Coaching, and an Honorary Doctorate from CICA International University & Seminary. In addition, Monaye studied writing for television and novel writing and editing under the tutelage of New York Times Bestselling Author and creator of Shondaland, Shonda Rhimes, and NAACP Image Award Winner and New York Times Bestselling Author Victoria Christopher Murray. Charron Monaye is a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., Order of Eastern Star, and First Baptist Church of Crestmont. Born and raised in Philadelphia, PA, she currently resides in Wesley Chapel, FL, with her two sons.
Who is Charron Monaye, in five words?
A Woman Who Creates Legacies!
How did you get your start in writing, can you remember the first time you picked up a pen?
Writing has always been therapy for me. Being a person who is selective with communicating, I tend to hold things in, and as a kid, this was my life. I have always felt, and sometimes still do, that people could care less about you, your feelings, life struggles, or things that may be affecting you. I mean, let’s face it, who out here doesn’t have something going on? So it has always been my belief that people ask questions, that they really don’t want the answer to, but asking out of generating conversation or asking to get in your business to either judge or gossip about you. Thus, to keep my name and their judgment out of their mouth, I wrote.
I picked up my pen, I want to say in the 3rd grade. My teacher, Dr. Ida D. Dark, taught me the power of words through poetry. She showed me how to write messages, stories, and feelings through the expression of stanzas. She always shared with me that, “Words don’t need to form a complete sentence to change lives”. Between that statement and her education, I penned my first poem, Alone, at the age of 12 years old. That poem led me to win a Poetry Contest with the U.S. Library of Congress, become a published author at the age of 14, perform my poem at a UNCF Telethon, write professional articles for news outlets and magazines, become a songwriter for a few R & B artist, write play scripts, and write books.
What inspired the creation of “The Adventures of Michelle” children’s book series?
The Adventures of Michelle was never supposed to go beyond the first book, Michelle and Her Magical Pen, which was released on November 4, 2020. To be honest, during Covid, I was looking for something to write about, as I had run out of life experiences and drama to share. Thus, seeking a new genre. One day, one of my authors sent me his book files for distribution and it was a children’s book. From the illustrations and cute story, I was like, “I want to do that too”. So, he connected me with his illustrator, India Sheana and it was on.
Then once Michelle and Her Magical Pen was released, the feedback received was so incredible, I started writing more. More turned into a series, and I am still writing and India is still illustrating. To date, there are 8 books, 1 activity book, and a Reading is Fun Beach Towel. Michelle within the series, These books are a whole movement.
You have authored over twenty-five books in several different genres, what message has remained true throughout the pages of every book?
My continued message is, “If I can, you can”. I am committed to writing stories, regardless of if it’s non-fiction, children’s, devotionals, or self-help. I feel that it’s my responsibility to lead with inspiration, motivation, and lessons learned. There are a lot of people out here, hurting, frustrated, confused, and looking for direction with this thing called life. Listen, life doesn’t come with a manual or a cheat sheet to make living more manageable. However, I feel that, as we go and grow through things we should share tips, strategies, or present ideas and/or different perspectives to help others achieve faster or with less stress.
So if you are interested in learning what I did to get out of debt, find your “why”, understand your purpose, and how I managed to sustain my business, while being an employed federal employee and single mother, then any of my books will benefit you. Also, if you have children who are seeking education through fun, exploration, and representation, then “The Adventures of Michelle” children’s books are for them!
As someone with theatrical experience, can you share what has been the highlight of your theatre career thus far?
Hands down, I have to say my play “Get Out OF Your Own Way”. That play, to date, is my favorite and best play ever! Since starting my theatrical scriptwriting journey in 2012, I have written and produced 5 theatrical productions, for myself, and written and/or directed 3 for other authors.
But my biggest highlight was producing my play, “Get Out Of Your Way”, and that’s simply because it was my first production that premiered in Hollywood, California, and Off-Broadway in New York. And remind you, I was living in Philadelphia, PA., at the time. So I was producing this play, hiring a team, running team meetings via zoom, and sitting in on rehearsals via Facetime all from Philly. Talk about having trust! But I must say, from the director to the production team and cast, they showed up and when the play premiered in both states, we sold out every show.
Tell us about Pen Legacy Publishing, what do you hope authors take away from your platform?
Pen Legacy Publishing is one of the pillars of my company Pen Legacy LLC. Pen Legacy, LLC., is a literary conglomerate dedicated to helping aspiring writers share their stories by supplying a platform to elevate their unique voices. Since its inception, in 2008, Pen Legacy has evolved to include a publishing, scriptwriting, and ghostwriting division.
Now as it relates to our publishing division, we have successfully published over one hundred books, with about 62% becoming Amazon Bestsellers and others generating corporate deals, speaking engagements, film deals, and academia placement. I am also proud to note that our company is behind the successful author careers of Ms. Evelyn Braxton (Braxton Family Values), Precious L. Williams, Esq. (Corporate Trainer with BMW, MasterCard, and Pitch Coach for the TV show, Shark Tank), Ty Johnston-Chavis (TV & Film Producer, TV Showrunner) and Debbie D. Douglas (Talent Recruiter for Paramount Network) to name a few.
For me, as the founder and owner of Pen Legacy, and all of its sub-divisions, it is always my hope that people know that we are a literary company that understands the power of stories, words, and being heard. We understand the pressure and rejection of traditional publishers but is committed to offering you the same benefits while you are able to maintain creative control. With Pen Legacy, you own your voice, your rights, and your royalties…. We just make sure that your story is heard and globally available!
You have spent a good portion of your career being the amazing woman behind some of our favorite celebrities, and influencers’ books, Can you tell us about this experience? What goes into Ghostwriting someone else’s story?
Ghostwriting is not for the faint at heart, but I enjoy it. Working with so many people, celebrities or non-celebrities, being able to learn from, for me is key. Sitting at some of the feet of the people I have written for is an experience that is truly unforgettable. From the history lessons, free coaching, and lived advice, it’s unmatched. In addition to learning and being a student to the person, you get to learn more about their story, journey, lessons and wins. You have the opportunity to gain insight and gems that can be used in your life. However, if you are someone who takes on people’s feelings and emotions, or has a hard time digesting trauma or pain, ghostwriting can be a challenge.
Depending on the story, it is your job to become that person. I often tell people, “Ghostwriting is like stepping out of your body, and stepping in theirs so you can feel, understand, live, and sound like them for the sake of the story.” It’s almost like the role and process of an actor. When they get a script, they step out of their lives and become who the character is. This is ghostwriting. People know when I am ghostwriting because I am not myself. My energy is off, the conversation is different, and depending on how deep or dark the story is, I may fall into a state of depression or become suicidal. Remember, you are embodying that person. Ghostwriting can be a daunting job, but the reward outweighs the pain, the majority of the time.
What is next for you?
Whatever God has for me! To be honest, I’m in a season where I am moving in strategy, only aligning myself to things that are connected to my passion and assignment. So, of course, more writing books, ghostwriting, and assisting corporate entities with writing projects and creating content. If you need a writer, contact me at http://www.charronmonaye.com
What is your definition of a Pretty Woman Who Hustles?
Being a Pretty Woman Who Hustles is someone who understands that the hustle never dies, but living is a must. Whether you are grinding with your hands and energy or mentally making sure the business sustains and remains legit, the Pretty Woman values the balance of life vs. hustle and grind vs. rest. She may be committed to the goal, but not at the cost of herself or her family! Everything has a time and place, but she is not moving without a strategy. As her peace is paramount!
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