We had the good fortune of connecting with adrian michael green and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi adrian michael, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
it’s been a calling. a beautiful humming that has always been in the background of my life. and for many years )the majority of my life( i did all the things that were expected of me. and that has been helpful. it has gotten me to where i am. while working full-time in different educational spaces whether at the university level or elementary school level or high school level or middle school level i created. on the side. but even that seems to diminish what i was actually doing. i was growing. slowly. but i wasn’t ever able to fully immerse myself into the creative space. being able to connect with students and the adults that guided them has been fulfilling but i sort of just fell into it not really taking the time to ask myself what i wanted to do or who i wanted to be or better yet how i wanted to feel. and so teaching became my life for over a decade and then came to a head with the introduction of covid. and when distance learning side-lined in-person instruction and teachers were being charged with so many tasks to serve their students remotely while simultaneously trying to serve themselves and the world couldn’t pretend not to see the slaying of black lives while they sheltered in place that is when the creatives came out )creatives are always closest to the pain to the problem to the solution( that is when everyone needed to inner and aware and unlearn and probe and look at themselves when the practice has always been to avoid ourselves. so my artistry became my activism. what i had been building all along was just getting louder and it got to a point where i couldn’t keep staying up late and waking up really early between leading back-to-back trainings on purpose and belonging. so i decided to commit myself to my purpose completely. to leave working for someone else and leap into working for myself. to listen to that beautiful humming that i was too scared too hesitant too distracted to front and center. so to answer your question this part of my life is called trust yourself. following my heart into my own weather that michele norris once said that i create.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
i was a writer before i knew i was. i wrote that on the back of one of the first books i ever self-published. interestingly enough i also keep a six-page laminated copy of my first self-published book that was printed in 1995 by the “i can do it publishing group” )shout out fernay bing-faraji( where in it my eight-year-old self dreamed of owning my own “businesss” and wrote about “super muscle man” a super hero who tied up robbers who tried to rob his house and ended up winning a trophy got married to super muscle woman and had four super muscle kids. it seems i predicted my future and had quite the imagination. to date i have put out fourteen titles. all of them are part of my story so it is a challenge to say which i am most proud or excited about but i will say the last three books )which come in a series( are at the top of the list. giver. and love language. hit some bestselling charts but the greatest honor from those works is knowing that readers have told me that those words helped them heal. that those words found them in hardship and encouraged them. that those words found and recognized and loved them as is and gave them something to hold onto in 2020. the third is called he was taught to be this way. which is a book i wish i had growing up exploring what it means to be a man. that was the hardest book that i ever wrote. and i am still writing it. a challenge about being a writer is finding your voice. there is a lot of noise out there and it takes so many years to get in your pocket. to confidently say this is mine. there is nothing new under the sun but a true writer is someone who doesn’t want to sound like anyone else. yes you will come across people that inspire you and you admire their style and sometimes you emulate theirs as your own but the purpose of a writer is to discover who you are. and you aren’t anyone else but you. so seeing the flow the way the tenor of someone else should inspire you to continue on your path to uncover your light not settle for the voice others have lit. and social media exponentially makes that more difficult. my advice for aspiring writers is to think about your why and and commit to the craft. what i want the world to know about me is that i am dedicated to spreading love and positivity. i created lovasté in 2015 to propel that. to foster that. as a mantra to affirm to others that the lover in me honors the lover in you. that’s what the word lovasté means. to love yourself. to love others. authentically. why it has become a center to help equip people to have better conversations across difference. i want the world to know that when you see my work when you see my words when i get the opportunity to speak before you i am more than grateful. i wrote them for you. i hope you find meaning in my words. i hope you find you in my words. i hope you find belonging in my words. i hope you find love in my words. i hope you find home in my words. to endeavor now as a full-time writer is indeed a dream come true. and the one lesson that i am taking with me for the next 365 days i offer as a lesson to you is this. trust yourself. in any moment of doubt trust yourself. in any moment of wanting to quit trust yourself. you are everything you need.
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?
well i no longer live in denver. we moved to the san fransisco bay area a few years ago. but if i were home in the box state we would head straight to welton street cafe in the historic five points to get a catfish dinner with frybread seasoned fries yams and a strawberry drink )probably take the peach cobbler to go(. then i would walk to my father’s cultural center )brother jeff’s( to catch his live show which is powered by the people or help take food donations. after about two hours there we’d go get lined up at exclusive cuts by my cousin patrick. the rest of the week i’d be sure to hit up my favorite writing spot at lookout mountain. if it was july we’d spend time up at the winter park jazz festival and jazz at the park )city park(. hike the flatirons in boulder. grab a ginger beer and breakfast burrito at whittier cafe. more than likely i would spend time taking in how much denver has changed. one of the last times we were there we took our son to his first protest at a coffee shop that thought gentrification was funny. we would visit the house my mother bought for us back in high school in aurora. see family in berthoud and green valley ranch. several stops in park hill via garfield street. make jummah prayer at masjid abu bakr. sprinkled in somewhere of course we’d have game night with the crew play bones and speak our secret code. the best time ever in denver is with the people we belong to. that is family. doesn’t matter where. so long as we are together.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
how much time do you have. too many to name. too many to surface. but first i must recognize and honor all of our educators who poured into the hearts of students. it is such a thankless and underpaid occupation that is most essential to the guiding of what our world will look like. so to all who logged into a screen and prepped and reminded and checked-in on and forgot to rest and couldn’t rest and showed up for those who may not have the language to thank you for showing up i appreciate you. i want to send love to my first cohort of second-grade scholars in tulsa. you tested me as a young teacher. you are forever part of my story. 2020 was your high school graduation that i planned to attend but couldn’t because of the coronavirus so to you i say: i am proud of you. i love you. thank you. to cindy jordan. my high school music teacher who i had the opportunity to work side-by-side professionally a few years into my teaching career. we had a conversation in your office before you retired that altered the trajectory of my life. i found what i was looking for. thank you for reminding me where to look and nudging me to do what makes me happy. to step into my purpose. to my family and friends. i stand on your shoulders thank you for supporting me. thank you for seeing me. thank you for encouraging me. thank you for buying my books you know i would give to you for free. thank you for knowing what i didn’t know and giving me the space to not know and eventually find out for myself. thank you for believing in me. to chanel. thank you for choosing me. for pushing me when i want to stay put. thank you for always being the first to tell me what i need to hear before i know i need to hear it. thank you for being the water to my roots. thank you for being an incredible partner and incredible mother to our brilliant son marley. to colorado. my native place. i haven’t seen you in quite some time but i still hold your air in my lungs. to everyone that gives. unselfishly. to those that feel disconnected and alone. to those who haven’t been able to see their loved ones in years. to those who deserve better who do so much and little is returned. to those struggling but do not have the words or feel safe to be vulnerable. to you. i am because of you. we are all going through something. we are all healing from something. shout out to you for being you. for being you. for being. you.