Tuesday, February 20, 2018

A Bookish Conversation with Patrick & Shani Muhammad


South Florida based janitor turned serial entrepreneur, Patrick Muhammad took what some would call an unconventional route to his newest venture.  “What I do now has evolved.  It truly took my passion and has turned it into a profession for me. I can see myself mentoring and sharing my story with young people easily for the next 20 years.  I love talking to young people and showing them, what entrepreneurship looks like. I love sharing my stories of how I came to be.  I didn’t just wake up one day and have all the answers.  My wife and I bumped our head A LOT.  I just want to say to them, look…here’s the blueprint.  Start now, don’t wait until you’re 30.  Passion has no age requirement, and has no limit on how many you can have. I started out as a janitor, then became a baker now I am into motivational speaking. They just have to have the passion and guidance. Anything is possible.”

“Patrick Turns His Play Into Pay” is the 1st book in a series of children’s books authored by husband and wife writing partners, Shani and Patrick Muhammad. The idea for the book was created one night while trying to explain the reason there was a gigantic, neon, pink and orange food-truck, now sitting in their front yard to their then 4 year-old Qadeer.   Patrick and his wife came up with the idea that they would write a keepsake item for all their children, detailing the road they took to becoming entrepreneurs.  The primary message is simple. By tapping into your passion early in life you can turn your playdays into paydays.  Once the book was published they both realized that the story could not only inspire their own children to entrepreneurship, but others as well. Shani figured out how to self-publish it and Patrick would take it to different youth groups in his community.   “I began shopping the book around to childcare centers and non-profits that served young people in the projects and the adults loved it.  “They really loved the idea that it was based on a true story and that the message was coming from a black male perspective. A story their children could relate to.  The images were brown like them and I just always got a positive response.  We took that book everywhere with us, and the response was this is a message that’s needed.  Children can’t be what they can’t see.”
Patrick currently lives in South Florida with his wife and three of his youngest five children.  He has a passion for planting the seed of entrepreneurship and carving out wealth building opportunities for his children’s generation. When he’s not writing books he’s on tour, speaking to groups of young people about basic principles of financial literacy and the benefits of early investing using cryptocurrency as a vehicle to establish future financial goals. When he’s not doing that…he’s on a creek with a fishing pole in his hand.

Shani Muhammad has been married to Patrick for 17 years now.  Together they have 5 children and 3 grandchildren.   Shani has spent the past 15 years in a classroom as a teacher. She too is a serial entrepreneur and has in the past owned a one-price shoe store, group homes and several online businesses. When she’s not working on the next children’s book in their series, she too enjoys researching and investing in crypto currencies and planning her family’s next “staycation.”

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK



About the Book:


The first book in a series, "Patrick Turns His Play Into Pay", details the journey of an entrepreneur,
through the eyes of a child. The book uses vivid illustrations and lively words, to explain the road little Patrick took into the world of entrepreneurship.  It demonstrates the benefits of tapping into your passion early in life.  “Patrick” tapped into his passion of baking to help solve a money problem.  This book also shows the ups and downs of being an entrepreneur.  You witness a 9-year old take the power and control of his future into his own hands. You also see what happens when “Patrick” finds help in a friend, to help grow his business. Above all, this book motivates both young and young at heart and serves as a reminder that we all have the ability to turn our playdays into paydays.

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Thank you for this interview!  I’d like to know more about you as a person first.  What do you do when you’re not writing?

I’m on a fresh water creek, fishing...somewhere.

When did you start writing?

I wrote my 1st book at the age of 48.

As a published author, what would you say was the most pivotal point of your writing life?

When I held the final, published copy of my book in my hands. I guess primarily because I’ve been a janitor for the past 25 years and never really saw it getting to this point and coming to fruition.

If you could go anywhere in the world to start writing your next book, where would that be and why?

Savannah, Georgia. My wife and I traveled there for a family reunion a few years ago and fell in love with the city.  It has a lot of rich history. A lot of it, I felt really personally connected to.   We have plans at some point to actually live there. My wife’s side has land that’s been in their family for at least 5 generations.  It’s in a rural area with a nice lake attached. We plan to do something with it.  Even if it’s just to build a place for our family, I think we owe that to her ancestors.

If you had 4 hours of extra time today, what would you do?

Go fishing.

Where would you like to set a story that you haven’t done yet?

The next one will be in Savannah, Georgia.

Back to your present book, Patrick Turns His Play Into Pay, how did you publish it?

Self-publish.

In writing your book, did you travel anywhere for research?

No

Why was writing Patrick Turns His Play Into Pay so important to you?

Because it was for my family.

Where do you get your best ideas and why do you think that is?

When I’m on the creek. It’s just me and nature.

Any final words?

Passion has no age requirement, and has no limit on how many you can have. I started out as a janitor, then became a baker now I am into motivational speaking. With passion and guidance, anything is possible.

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