Tenisha N. Collins is an author, accountant, editor/proofreader, and entrepreneur. She was born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky prior to relocating to Southern California in 2007.
A graduate of the University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business, she holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Accounting but has a love for writing and proofreading.
When Tenisha’s not preparing corporate and individual income taxes at the firm where she works part time, she is balancing her mom life with her wife and entrepreneur life. Tenisha has been married for 26 years and has four children and a grandson who inspired her first book.
White cake, Batman, Hulk, weddings, Black Panther, Wonder Woman, cheese pizza, bread, shrimp, royal blue, family photos and the beach are some of her favorite things. In her spare time, Tenisha loves to spend time with her family and runs a Facebook marriage support group called Strong Marriage.
- When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
TC: I always enjoyed my English classes in high school and college. Whenever I read anything, I automatically corrected the grammar and spelling. It’s like I was born to proofread! However, it wasn’t until the early 2000s that I desired to write a children’s book series.
- How long does it take to write your book(s)?
TC: In the past, it has taken me about six months to produce a book; about three months to write, one month for the cover and two months to edit.
- What is your work schedule like when writing a book?
TC: I am not a full time writer yet, so my schedule for writing is limited. I am a wife, mother of four, a grandmother, a Girl Scout Leader, a speaker, a marriage coach, an accountant and I also own my own editing & proofreading business. I have to manage my time very well. During tax season, I generally don’t schedule a lot of time to write. I usually write more in the winter months before club volleyball & tax season take up most of my time.
- Where do you get your ideas or information for your book?
TC: I get ideas and info for my books while driving. My commute to the CPA Firm where I work is about an hour. I’m usually listening to my music or a book, talking to my mom on the phone, praying or learning a new skill from youtube. Ideas just pop into my head! I stop what I’m doing and have Siri record my thoughts. My new urban fiction series that I’m working on right now came from those notes Siri recorded as I was driving.
- When did you write your first book?
TC: I wrote my first book in 2004. It has never been published because I lost the manuscript. (That’s before we were accustomed to typing the manuscript on a laptop or computer.) In 2007 I relocated to Southern California and forgot all about my manuscript. It wasn’t until April 2018 that I finally published a book.
- What do you do when you’re not writing?
TC: When I’m not writing, I’m preparing taxes, attending my daughter’s show choir performances or volleyball games, taking photos of my family, traveling with my husband, catching up on my favorite TV shows, spending time with my grandson or relaxing on the beach. (Yes, I even go to the beach in December; it’s self care.) My spare time is limited and very valuable. I take great pleasure in spending time with my family and friends.
- What does your family think of your writing?
TC: My husband, children, parents and Mother-In-Love are proud of me. They all have their copies. My mom even keeps a copy in her purse to show people she encounters. It inspires me; makes me feel good.
- What was the most surprising thing you learned in creating your books?
TC: I learned how knowledgeable you can be without realizing it. Life moves so fast that I generally don’t take the time to stop and acknowledge when I’ve learned something, overcome an obstacle or mastered a task. Writing gives me the opportunity to stop and reflect on my life experiences and knowledge base.
- How many books have you written and which is your favorite?
TC: I’ve written over 14 books but only two have been published. At the moment, I don’t favor one over the others; they are all my favorite. Each book solves a different problem, addresses a different audience and helps someone in its own unique way. Each book has a specific purpose and is designed for a particular group of people. I take pleasure in each one.
- Any tips/suggestions on getting started?
TC: Just write. Find a place where you are still and at peace. Get comfy and write whatever comes to mind. Don’t worry about it making sense or flowing correctly or if it fits an outline. Just write. Your first draft will shape your ideas, form your outline and give you the premise of your story.
- What do you think makes a good story?
TC: Everyone has a story to tell. Words are amazing! They can take your mind on a journey and create pictures in your brain. The way you use words, the words you choose and the way you arrange those words makes a good story.
- As a child, What did you want to do when you grew up?
TC: I honestly cannot recall what I wanted to do when I grew up. I wasn’t exposed to “a list” of professions until high school. As a high school senior, I chose to major in accounting in college. I chose that profession because they earned a good salary and wore business suits. As a high school senior, I could see myself in that role.
Around that same time, I was consciously aware that I was destined to be a wife. I wanted to be an excellent wife with a husband who showered me with his love. Yes, I’m a hopeless romantic.
I still have a passion for strong, loving marriages, so I founded a marriage support group and donate my marriage coaching skills to help the members.
Writing didn’t stir within me until after I was married with small children.