We had the good fortune of connecting with Grace C. Okoro and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Grace C., what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
Growing up, I’ve always loved creating, but my creations came through my writings. I started writing music at the age of 10 years. It was just something that I and my siblings did for fun. We wanted to be the next destiny child. When I turned 18, I started rapping and expressing my gifts of writing in that way. As I got older, I wanted to find a way in which I can be impactful, and inspire individuals, so I started a blog and my writing took off from there. Fast forward into 2020, and everyone is required to be at home on lockdown. The inspiration to write a book came, and by the Grace of God, I wrote my first children’s book “Mercedes Jacobs Is a Fifth Grader”. I believe through writing books, I can reach people of all ages. Success to me is not the amount of money you make in life, but the amount of impact you had on an individual’s life. My goal in life is to encourage others and bring hope through all I do.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am currently finishing my master in health administration, and will begin my Doctorate in health science right after. I work as a Graduate assistant at Texas Woman’s University- Houston Campus. My work ethic and drive I believe is what sets me apart from others. Who would expect a girl who wanted to be a rapper, and later began writing books, to get a doctorate in health science. I am proud that I did not give up. When many people expected or wished me to fail in life, I used it as fuel to propel me into achieving greater. My faith is what keeps me grounded because without God I would not be the woman I am today. That one is for sure! CHALLENGES IN BECOMING A FULL-TIME CREATOR/WRITER The journey was very difficult because my culture pushes you to achieve success through education. Education is an important factor to life, but it’s not the only way in which someone can attain greatness. I did not have people who could direct me in my music, or writings, so everything I learned was through watching videos on YouTube, and a lot of Oprah. I had a hard time promoting myself, and connecting to others who could do the same. My insecurities played a huge part also when it came to Social media. I was so concerned on how I should present myself to people, instead of just being myself. Now I know that being authentic is what matters because it sets you apart from everyone else. I’ve learned to love myself and trust in my abilities and talents. Nothing is impossible to attain in life if you just believe, work hard, take risks, and don’t give up. Surrounding yourself with like-minded people, and environments that will inspire you to push forward. Those environments are the YouTube videos or movies you watch, the friends you keep, and what you decide to listen to.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
The galleria mall, studio movie grill, papadeux or cheddar are a few places I like to spend my time. If you are looking for a restaurant that has music, sports, good food, then 2200 Bar is a great spot also.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I thank God for all the people he has placed in my life. The church I attend now, Temple Rebuilders Ministries has had a huge impact on my growth, from the members, to all the pastors, and the senior pastor Emmanuel Ohuabunwa and Evangelist Christi Ohuabunwa.I thank my parents Pastor Arthur and Pastor Blessing Okoro for raising me in Christ, and to Heather Ohuabunwa who is the Illustrator of the book “Mercedes Jacobs Is a Fifth Grader”. She helped tremendously in putting the book together. And to all my family and siblings Mary Okoro, Micah Okoro, Mcgabriel Okoro, Praise Okere, my grandmothers,Obazei Family, Earnest Okoronkwo, Nnadozie family, they have been my support, and I thank God for them all.