Malena Crawford Says Black Women Can Overcome Anything In Book Fistful Of Honey

Black women are known for their strength, zeal and determination to create better lives for their children and future generations. Malena Crawford knows firsthand what it means to be strong in the midst of tribulation, having endured homelessness, sexual abuse and racism. Overcoming her struggles and fears through faith, Crawford vowed to help heal other women along the way. And she’s doing just that with her debut novel, A Fistful of Honey.
The book is a battle cry of our times, addressing Black women’s divinity, healing, and elevation and declaring that we not only matter—we are the key to humanity’s survival. Crawford’s personal story of redemption from homelessness and abuse is beautifully enmeshed in this fantasy fiction. And even Iyanla Vanzant is impressed with the work, calling  it “a healing balm of a book” and a “must read.” Here we talked with Crawford to get more insight on the inspiration for this novel.

MadameNoire (MN): What personally inspired you to write this book?

Malena Crawford (MC): This book was inspired by the events around Trayvon Martin’s murder. On the day that his murderer was let off, I was incensed! It was so hard for me to accept that in 2013 there was still this level of injustice and blatant racism. As I do most things that I struggle with, I took the issue to God in prayer and begged the question; why do Black and brown people continue to be so oppressed, what is the purpose and the solution for this, Lord? I did get my answer, over the next 3 months. Like clockwork I woke up very early in the morning with ideas on my spirit and I wrote and wrote. As I pulled those ideas together, my main inspiration was the Black women who would read the story. I wanted us to know that despite the injustice we face and everything else, we are and will continue to be victorious. I wanted to have a piece of literature that I’d want to read, and have my daughter read, that reminds us that we are divine and we’re to be celebrated.

MN: Explain the meaning behind the title.

MC: Honey is really a symbol that represents the sweetness of life–overcoming, redemption, and The Promised Land. It’s what’s at the core of movements like Carefree Black Girl and Black Girl Magic, a celebration of ourselves in spite of what the world imposes on us. In A Fistful of Honey, character Alena Ford receives the calling to restore a Lost Kingdom. One of the keys to this kingdom is given to her by slavery era ancestors, the ones who sacrificed their “honey” for her. A Fistful of Honey reminds us that no matter what it looks like, we have been given a great gift. We have inherited something very special as Black women and we have been given the grace to live it out. How will we receive it and rise to our “honey” sweetness in terms of our natural femininity despite the struggle narrative the world tries to ascribe to us?

MN: What are three takeaways ladies will get from this book to help them in 2017?

MC: Forgiveness heals, resentment blocks us. Ladies, our hearts really are the key to our happiness and we have to get radical about forgiveness, forgive everything and everyone starting with ourselves. Your pain has purpose! Bless your darkest moments and don’t be ashamed of your struggles, focus on who you get to be as you grow from them. Life’s setbacks often lead to your purpose and the highest version of you. And last, lead with your “honey” in 2017 and beyond! Get back into the simple joy and sweetness of life and who you are naturally as a woman. A woman who celebrates herself, claims her stake on the best parts of life—she is the revolution!

For more information on the forthcoming A Fistful of Honey visit malenacrawford.com.

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