Today, I have been enthralled by the numerous posts paying homage to the dynamic and phenomenal woman, Dr. Maya Angelou. Although many are relaying their personal expressions, the most captivating ones to me are those written by everyday people like me who encountered her by happenstance. My experience with Dr. Angelou occurred on June 29, 2013, and this is what I wrote (on Facebook) that describes my reaction:
"My cup runneth over! Today, I heard the legendary Ms. Maya Angelou...captivating, poetic, wise, and courageous. Then I was introduced to her. She looked me in my eyes, held my hand, and said, "Keep on writing, baby!" Instantly, my eyes were filled with tears, and I am inspired even more to do as she requested. #MayaAngelouhasspoken!"
Other posts that I've read share a commonality of genuine encounters too! Her spirit resonated and lifted you, and her energetic touch poured into your soul just like her poetry.
In my mind, Dr. Angelou was the true measure of a woman! She used her personal plight and the injustices of the world to enrich, nourish, enlighten, educate, empower, and inspire. Although her actual presence will be missed on earth, her testament to purposeful living and her masterful words will live on. #KeepWritingBaby!
>>November 5: Epic Fest, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library Foundation
>>November 1: is National Family Reading Day
>>September is National Literacy Awareness Month
Nichelle Nicholes Levy, Esq. | Digital Counsel, Legal | NASCAR Digital Media
Play Dates and Other Tales is a subsequent book for kids ages 2 to 7. The stories in this book are entitled YOU, Many Colors, Number Chant, and Play Dates. Learn more
Ocean Waves and Other Tales, designed for ages newborn to 5, is a multicultural book comprised of four short stories: Ocean Waves, I Am Loved, Baby Bear, and I'm Sleepy. Learn more
My Soul/African American Spirituals: Embracing the Journey is a family-oriented book which honors the legacy of spirituals and symbolizes struggle, perseverance, strength, faith, hope, and freedom. Learn more
Helen’s books have been featured at the Book Expo America, the London Book Fair, the Frankfurt Book Fair, and the Savannah Children’s Book Festival, and in publications such as Charlotte Parent, Los Angeles Family, York Region Parent, Baker & Taylor: Books for Growing Minds, and Hampton University’s Alumni Magazines. Additionally, Ocean Waves was noted alongside the Johnson & Johnson Bedtime Baby Products via email blast to perspective moms for several years, and Play Dates was featured on Sesame Street’s Recommended Reading List for select shows focused on Colors, Numbers, and Music. These books in addition to her latest release, My Soul/African American Spirituals, which launched in 2013 at the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts & Culture were presented in partnership with Wells Fargo at the 41st National Convention of Jack and Jill of America, Inc.
Helen is passionate about reading and hopes all children are enriched through her books
"Ms. Kimbrough’s book is timely and desperately needed for this generation of children who may understand the power, significance, and beauty that the Negro spiritual provided for several generations which help shape the United States of America they live in today"
Kama Pierce | Assistant Dean of Academics & Assistant Professor of Law at Charlotte School of Law
"My Soul/African American Spirituals: Embracing the Journey is a captivating literary work of art that accompanies the reader on a journey of reflection, introspection and self-discovery. The reader and the narrative become one as they hajj through the spiritual ascension of those that have paved the way. My Soul brought tears to my eyes that washed my soul and I cannot encourage enough people to secure this piece in their repertoire. It is not a book, it truly is an experience. It is my sincerest belief that the author’s desire was not only to connect with the soul of her readers, but it was also her desire to connect her readers with the souls of our ancestors…BRAVA!!!
Nikki Fleming | March of Dimes National Ambassador
Bringing Stories to Life
As an author, one of my many privileges is bringing stories to life. My ultimate objective is to create a reading experience that kids and families will enjoy. Some elements that I use in creating and presenting stories include:
Children love music! In their eyes, music is magical, wonderful, and captivating. They enjoy singing, dancing, and listening to the sounds and beats of music. Read more
In the News
What People are Saying
"The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture was pleased to celebrate the launch of Helen Kimbrough’s third book, My Soul/African-American Spirituals: Embracing the Journey. This book wonderfully honors our heritage through the presentation of these time-respected spirituals which have served as the backdrop in the lives of generations of African-Americans. The illustrations by J. Stacy Utley are masterful and serve as a perfect compliment."
Tiffany Legington Graham | Director of Development | Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Art & Culture
"Once you learn to read, you will be forever free," said Frederick Douglass, and that is the cornerstone of Helen's work. Whether with kids or adults, she is dedicated to literacy. As a businesswoman, colleague and mentor, she offers this gift in many ways - writing, book publishing, music, and social media. She is extremely talented, and IGNITES those around her."
Michelle Breland Jude, Executive Director at Pride Entrepreneur Education Program (PEEP) and former Marketing Director at Charlotte Parent
"Helen is a great story teller who makes great children's books of exceptional quality. She is very professional and is a great person to work with."
Javaka Steptoe, Artist/Illustrator
"Helen is an excellent author of children's literature. Her work engages the young reader, encourages the non-readers to reconsider, and connects learning as an overall part of the family experience. As a speaker, Helen draws the audience in through a unique blend of story-telling and song."
Wanda Harding, Technical Director at NOAA