Jeanette “MsNightLyfe” Ferrell says poetry chose her rather than the other way around.
“Poetry got into me when I began to self destruct,” the 39-year-old Fort Worth, Texas, native says. “It shattered everything I thought I was and showed me the light within. Poetry is my place of peace.”
Ferrell says most of her poems are written and never shared while some are performed and published via her blog and various books she’s had published. Ferrell also writes for local and national magazines and also writes novels and short stories. She calls poetry her “second full-time job.”
Ferrell earned her nickname when she started writing. Her main subjects were nightclubs and indie artists so she was always out visiting nightlife hot spots.
Her book “Reclaiming My Time” was released last summer, a practical guide to self care written for women of color. Ferrell calls it a “call to action to take care of yourself before assisting others.”
“It’s had an exceptional response,” Ferrell says. “It’s been used at women’s empowerment seminars, self-care workshops and women’s organizations at a couple of colleges.”
Ferrell blogs at sweettoothmedia.com and will host “Femme Fatale: Healing He(ART),” a workshop on Sept. 21. Visit her website for more information.
Ferrell, a lesbian, works by day as an academic enrichment coordinator. She came to the area two years ago for marriage and a new job. She and partner TJ live in Fort Washington, Md. She enjoys writing, traveling, meditation and wine in her free time.
How long have you been out and who was the hardest person to tell?
I came out at the age of 17 (22 years ago). The hardest person to tell was my father.
Who’s your LGBT hero?
What’s Washington’s best nightspot, past or present?
Wicked Bloom Mondays and A2Zee Friday happy hours at Decades.
Describe your dream wedding.
An intimate island wedding at sunset.
What non-LGBT issue are you most passionate about?
Black Lives Matter and education.
What historical outcome would you change?
Slavery would never have existed.
What’s been the most memorable pop culture moment of your lifetime?
On what do you insist?
That people buy and read my book, “Reclaiming My Time.”
What was your last Facebook post or Tweet?
An invite to a cruise that I’m featured on next summer.
If your life were a book, what would the title be?
“May the Odds Forever Be in Your Favor”
If science discovered a way to change sexual orientation, what would you
Nothing, I am fabulous just as I am. They say God makes no mistakes.
What do you believe in beyond the physical world?
In a multidimensional universe.
What’s your advice for LGBT movement leaders?
Remain visible and vigilant.
What would you walk across hot coals for?
To pay off my student loan debt
What LGBT stereotype annoys you most?
That lesbians move really fast. (U-Haul)
What’s your favorite LGBT movie?
“To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar”
What’s the most overrated social custom?
Recording trauma on cell phones.
What trophy or prize do you most covet?
My Tagg Magazine Enterprising Woman of the Year award and Teacher of the Year award
What do you wish you’d known at 18?
I wished I would have known then to keep working toward my goals, without cessation or breaks.
It’s the nation’s capital and love called me. The diversity is amazing here and it has done wonders for my art form.