Have you ever been looking for something and didn't even know you were looking for it? Or what to do with it when you found it? Or how about it being more than what you ever expected?
Friendships and sisterhoods have become a thing of the past to some and to others its still alive and well, Thriving if you will. Women have been attached to a stigmatism that we CANT get a long, we cant be friends with other women, we don't like new friends, then there's the light skin - dark skin battle, and then there's the jealousy and treachery we put ourselves through in friendships. We have convinced ourselves that we are not our Sisters Keeper. It must END!
Imagine having a squad like Beyoncé's "Bey Hive" and Tamar's "Tamartians" that has your back and loves you as if you were a long time friend. Imagine meeting women that become friends and sisters. Imagine having a whole group that holds you accountable and that prays for you with no strings attached. Imagine that love in the ladies bathroom at the club but, everyday! That's NRG!
A year or so ago I got so much more than expected when I joined Author Nako's Reading Group or NRG as we call it. After reading " Please Catch my Soul", I wanted more I needed to find out more about the author that had this thug crying, and BOOM in the back of the book I found her FB group, I joined and I think it took an act of congress to finally be added. LOL no hard feelings my girl be busy. Shortly after joining I realized that it wasn't just about the books, everyday women were coming together, sharing feelings, requesting prayer and setting goals. I was shocked and so happy to be apart of something positive. Now don't get me wrong the group gets intense during book discussions but we still manage to band together and #bondoverbooks! Now we all have accountability partners that uplift, check us in love and that have become friends/sisters/confidants.
I had a chance to speak with the brains about how it all began! Can you believe Nako had no clue she even had fans!! WHAT? Check out what she had to say about NRG.
1. Where did the idea of NRG stem from?
Nako: One of my readers came to me with the idea of creating a reading group, which would serve as a central place for my readers to discuss my books and all things Nako related.
Lena: NRG started by me being apart of other reading groups. I found Nako on Facebook when I found out there was going to be a connects wife 4. About a month after I asked could I make her fan page because I wanted a way all her fans could interact.
2. How/ When did it become more than books?
Nako: Whew! That’s a really good question so originally it was three admins, Lena, Zaii and Enique and we were always coming up with ways to keep the group engaged in between me dropping the books so from there we came up with the morning motivation posts, the Tuesday night let’s talk discussion, the birthday shout outs and birthday cards and then for a short time we even was doing Wednesday night bible study discussions. NRG became more than books when I saw relationships forming and now a lot of the members use the term #bondedbybooks because sisterhoods have been created, best friends, prayer warriors and even travel buddies. It’s amazing to see what's has come from a reading group.
Lena: Not when I first brought it to her as an idea. I really thought it would be a group where her fans could interact. But after we re-launched NRG and Nako brought her ideas to the table and I brought my ideas to the table I realized it would be a place where we would discuss more than just Nako's books.
3. How long has NRG been around?
I think it’s been about two years now.
4.How does the group make you feel as an author? Do we inspire you?
Nako: It makes me feel good. I have a lot of faith and confidence in my reading group. I tell everyone that my group got my back lol. They’re all very supportive and I realized that when me and my family found out my mother had cancer. I wasn’t going to share it with the reading group but I’m very glad I did. Some of my readers, Shawn, Ava, Camille and Ms. Lashan – I call her my fairy godmother orchestrated a Christmas gift thing for my mom and literally the tears in her eyes had tears in my eyes. The support was so appreciated and every day someone was checking on me and praying with and for me. That’s when I knew that this was more than a reading group and also for my birthday, my dinner and party was full of my amazing readers.
I can give a million more examples but one thing I can say is that I’m extremely grateful for every relationship formed, even the ones that I’ve ended I have made some beautiful memories via NRG and it’s a wonderful feeling.
As an author it makes me feel good to know that on release day my reading group is hyped and ready to one-click. Even when I launch new series that messes the calendar up or drop something new like my new coffee mugs or the self-help book everyone is always supporting me and making me feel good.
I have a very strong support system in NRG.
Heather runs NRG IG and just about everything else lol I tell everyone she’s the general and even the IG page gets good feedback. I really believe we are changing lives one book at a time – which is the ultimate goal.
4. Where do you want it to go from here?
Nako: Right now me and one of my readers are putting together a trip for NRG so I’m really excited about that, I want to do a retreat every two years. I’ve done some pop ups in certain cities and I want to do a Read Pray Slay book tour. I’m working on a podcast now and a few others things. NRG is an amazing platform and group and I know that we will only continue to grow more and do great things together.
5. Are you aware of the lives touched? How does that make you feel?
No, lol but I have heard amazing stories about how my readers are able to relate with the books and characters and every time I hear the stories and read them in the reviews I’m humbled and more pepped up to do better.
It makes me feel good that there are women out there that can relate to me and my mess.
NRG has helped me so much and I wanted everyone to know that sisterhoods are still alive. NRG is a sisterhood, to me it is the ultimate sisterhood. The love, positivity and encouragement that flows through NRG cant even be measured, its that massive. Everyday women are being pushed into growth, prayed into new heights, loved through tough seasons, and encouraged in times of confusion and despair. I remember being apart of the cards and love being sent to Nako's mom and I remember hearing Nako's voice in the video, I heard a voice of love, love was given over and over and over. I thought "gosh I love my sisters".
Sunday my pastor advised us to not go through our walk alone, and I'm so glad that this group opened my eyes and is there with me through this walk, I'm so thankful for the relationships that have been created.
Nako, Lena, Heather, Kashonna, Lashan, Zaii, Enique you are all appreciated. I believe I can say on behalf of NRG we love you all for the hard work that goes in to Mask off Monday, Tune into me Tuesday, Women who win Wednesday and etc.
NRG I love you, my sisters its so many to name so I wont even get started. And let me not forget about Damien, he slides in and out like a thief in the night but we love him to. If you don't have an AP you better get you one and soon!!!
Be sure to visit: nakoexpo.com/thepassport for blog entries for women by women.
Visit: Nakoexpo, single and ok, and the passport, on Instagram!
Also check her books out on Amazon you wont be disappointed.
OH and #TeamLO
NRG = #SquadGoals!