April Duplessis: Nola Natives Books and Tea, LLC
Creating a safe space and a fellowship for women was April Duplessis’ goal when she created her book club, Nola Natives Books and Tea, LLC. With her passion for reading beginning at a young age, April sought to bring women together whom shared that same passion. Her book club is known for doing charity work and drives to promote reading to the youth, and for promoting and supporting local authors throughout her hometown of New Orleans. And recently, I spoke with April about what led her to take this amazing journey.
1. QUESTION: I’m sure that starting your book club was something that always swirled in your mind in the past. But what was the pivotal moment that pushed you into making it real?
ANSWER: The pivotal moment that pushed me into making it real was I was sitting in my living room , cooking dinner and It suddenly hit me that, “Hey, I should start a book club.” I really wanted create a safe space for working mothers and wives where they can read, relax and rejuvenate.
2. QUESTION: Where would you say your passion for reading began?
ANSWER: I would say my passion for reading started in the second grade. My teacher at the time, Mrs. Timmerman , always made story-time in her class fun. I’ll never forget the book she read that sparked my passion for reading. It was “Chocolate Fever” by Robert Kimmel Smith. I’ve been in love with reading ever since that day.
3. QUESTION: What does you Keep Praying, Keep Pushing look like? Have you ever had moments where you’ve felt like you’ve hit rock bottom? If so, what helped you to keep pushing forward?
ANSWER: Keep Praying, Keep Pushing to me, looks like never giving up no matter what. It’s knowing that God will always be by your side.
4. QUESTION: Describe the feeling you had when you realized that your brand, your book club was becoming a real thing.
ANSWER: .The feeling I had when I realized my brand was becoming a real thing was exciting. I had put a lot of time and effort into my brand and to see authors and so many amazing women inquiring about being apart of it made me proud. Hearing all their stories about why they joined was really inspiring, it was more than a book club, it became a family and a place of fellowship for women of all ages and backgrounds.
5. QUESTION: What can we expect in the future for Nola Natives Books and Tea?
ANSWER: In the future, you can expect online activities , African American author appreciation and more encouragement for children’s literacy.
Just like other activities, reading books is something that can allow us to just sit back and take a break from this crazy world. April definitely saw that, and used that opportunity to help others. Her prayers and passion drove her to create this book club in order to not only empower herself, but to empower others as well. Just like all of us, she has had her challenges while trying to making her book club a success. But she kept going and she’s now enjoying the success of pursuing her purpose.
If you’re interested in learning more, you can keep up to date with NOLA Natives Books and Tea on Instagram here!
To check out our previous Phoenix spotlights, just click here!
And Remember, Keep Praying and Keep Pushing!