Today we’d like to introduce you to Toni Williams Holloway.
Toni, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I am a native Chicagoan, a transplanted Texan, and a heartfelt Mississippian. When I was in college, I worked part-time writing obituaries at a local newspaper. While it may seem like an odd job, I learned a lot about sharing someone’s life story by giving them the honor and respect they deserved from a life well-lived. About 12 years ago, I started blogging as a way of coping with the trauma of divorce and navigating my new normal as a single mom. In 2013, I shifted my writing focus to blogging about my journey with thyroid cancer. Through it all, I noticed God’s grace, healing, and comfort and it became commonplace for me to write more and more about just how good He is. I write for one simple reason, to share God’s truth and help amazing people become even more amazing in their own lives.
After writing professionally for web-based magazines, blogs, and publishing a series of devotionals and prayer journals, I realized that my skills and knowledge of the writing and publishing industry are nothing if I can’t use them to help others. Today, I coach writers on sharing their journeys by using meaningful and impactful methods – be it through blogging, writing and self-publishing a book, or on social media.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
The writing bug first bit me when I was about 13 years old. Unfortunately, in several high school English classes, I was told that my writing did not meet grade-level standards and that things needed to improve drastically if I was going to write college-level essays. For all of the bad grades I received, I never felt that any of those teachers were willing to help me be successful. By the time I entered college, I was discouraged, but I’m grateful that I had two professors – one in English composition and another in journalism – who took the time to help me refine my writing skills, proofread my work, and create dynamic literary works. When I look back on my challenges, I realize that no one should ever underestimate the power of teachers in our society. I’m so grateful that I had the great influences that could encourage me after the humiliation I felt in high school.
We’d love to hear more about Twilli Media.
I live in a digital world where words and phrases like SEO, social media advertising, reach, performance, copyright infringement, and WordPress are commonly-used terms. As the publishing industry can be intimidating, I’m also in the business of balancing accurate and honest information with daily doses of encouragement. My clients literally have their own personal cheerleader… I come with everything except the pom-poms! Part of my job as a writing coach includes helping clients do the following:
Gain clarity and focus
Overcome writer’s block
Provide developmental manuscript editing
Create a solid marketing plan
Get direction on a book cover and blog designs
Serve as a biblical reference & fact-checker for authors who cite the Bible in their works
Navigate publishing platforms and help writers determine which is best for them
Establish and maintain a personable and consistent social media presence
If you’ve ever read Malcolm Gladwell’s book “The Tipping Point,” I’m known as a “connector.” If I can’t advise someone accurately on how to do something, I will connect them with the right resources, tools, or person who can.
I’m first and foremost a Christian, and I’m proud to say that everything I do in business is filtered through that lens. Many of the authors I work with writers from the Christian perspective, and it is a joy to help them on projects that showcase God’s glory.
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
Even though I started writing professionally in college, after graduation, my career goals changed from journalism to higher education. While I loved the work, I did and the students I served when I worked at colleges, I was neglecting my true calling as a writer. The 19 years I worked in education were great, but if I could have done anything differently, I would have stuck with my original career goals as they related to writing.
- Website: www.twilliwrites.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: instagram.com/heytwilli
- Twitter: twitter.com/heytwilli
- Other: heytwilli.com (personal blog)
Life’s a Snap
Greater Providence Baptist Church