Grind Mode Magazine: Welcome to Grind Mode. You have just seen the publication of your new book, 'Amanda's Ray,' can you quickly tell our readers what it is about?
Tachelle: Amanda’s Ray is about a sixteen year old girl from Brownsville, Brooklyn who finds out that she has a gift to write and later rhyme. She becomes obsessed with a female rapper who lands in jail. Amanda’s life soon gets turned upside down and she finds herself in Juvenille Detention.
Grind Mode Magazine: The book sees you tackle some pretty tricky issues - why did you want to bring things like juvenile detention, crack addiction and hip-hop as a role model to light in this work?
Tachelle: I see it everyday in the eyes of our youth as a teacher and artist. When kids come to class they don’t just bring their books – they bring a past with them. Hip hop is what many kids look up to as we did back in the day. The only difference – is back in my day we had dope lyrics along with dope beats, but like many of my students tell me – it’s just all about the beat, it’s time for hip hop to step up and feed the souls of our children.
Grind Mode Magazine: The book has a clear message to the youth - but what do you hope it can achieve as far as what it tells young people?
Tachelle: I want each young person who reads this book to know that they can do what ever they want to do as they put their minds to it. I want them to find their strength and put energy behind their dreams.