For thirty plus years, Rochelle Soetan has been writing with audacity and intention. Her writing aims for the transparent and very human and her fearlessness to address subjects of trauma, consciousness, identity, memory, gender, transformation and accountability have become her trademark and the nucleus of her writing style.
A native of New England and writing since the age of six, Rochelle began strategically focusing on her writing career while in high school in Washington, D.C., and while becoming a runner-up in a Regional Writing Competition for Black Writers followed by an appointment to Chief Editor for the school newspaper. Throughout her young adult years, she freelanced for local newspapers such as The Washington Post and National African-American Network (NAAN). Well into her professional career she advanced to becoming the policy editor and first African American commentary reader for the Policy Office at Voice of America (VOA), the largest international broadcasting bureau for the United States federal government serving digital, TV, and radio content in over 45 languages and 236 million listeners worldwide. She has been a monthly columnist for national publications such as Simple Steps Real Change, Woman Scope News, The Journey Suite, National Black Women’s Town Hall e-Newsletter (NBWTH Happenings) and currently Black Enterprise Magazine.
Bridges is a story of an occurrence which took place nearly two-decades ago. Rochelle has been writing the memoir intermittently for eleven years. The timeliness of this release comes at a pivotal point in American history, one that explores mental health disorders and draws attention to the increase in suicidal ideation and statistics over the past five years.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2015 suicide was the third leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 10 and 14, and the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 15 and 34. To date, suicide has been the tenth leading cause of death overall in the United States, claiming the lives of more than 44,000 people. In 2015, there were more than twice as many suicides (44,193) in the United States as there were homicides (17,793).
A prolific poet, global activist and mental health activist, her literary contributions as the creator and publisher of the international blog www.tuesdaymorninglove.com have spanned over more than eighty countries in seven years. Her memoir contribution to the Award-winning Anthology More of Life's Spices: Seasoned Sistah's Keepin' It Real Volume 2 was nominated as a Finalist for Foreword Magazine’s Book of the Year Award in 2013 and granted Honorable Mention Book for Women's Studies across the country. She is a contributing poet to the 2013 Lyrical Anthology Sistah's With Ink Voices, which is a global collaboration of women of color poets.
Pulse is the companion chapbook to the memoir Bridges: A Season of Surrender and renders a collection of spiritually profound poems. This will be Rochelle Soetan’s first complete published collection in 30 years.
Through her customized etiquette and training organization Pearls of Poise Rochelle has employed much of her literary expertise and life experience as a workshop leader to teaching, reaching, and mentoring young adults in public schools, charter schools and community organizations, a passion for which she is fully and faithfully vested. An avid reader and lifelong writer, Rochelle understands that being a writer means developing decorum and an abiding intimacy with language. She teaches workshop participants how to develop their voice through writing, share their disappointments and accomplishments, and visibly use their life as a class. Her commitment to honor what life’s possibilities are made of, further inspire her belief that awareness is the bridge to facilitate the shift from obliviousness to mindfulness.
A graduate of the University of Phoenix (AZ), Rochelle aspires to further her education to a Master of Fine Arts Program in Creative Writing and PhD Program in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. She resides in Maryland.
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