“It is what it is, but it doesn’t have to be that way.” That’s her motto, and it’s also the title of her book. Janyata Frazier has authored a book that couples her charm and wit while presenting motivationally inspired principles for shaping and developing one’s character.
Growing up the daughter of entrepreneur parents, while other kids were reading Nancy Drew novels, James and Jeanette had their daughter reading motivational speakers such as Napoleon Hill, Zig Ziggler, and Earl Nightingale. Jan was enamored with the stories that these speakers would tell, but the bottom line would always be the same: “You are in control of you;” “What you think you are, you are;” and “Dream plus action equals success.”
Being a product of that entrepreneurial home, it wasn’t a question of if Jan would create her own business; the real question was what will her business be? To the surprise of her parents, although she did get her real estate license, Jan didn’t stick with the family business of real estate; rather, she became one of the first certified teachers in her family. Teaching led her to Kobe, Japan where she taught English for two years at a Japanese high school, but along with it she brought her entrepreneurial spirit. Recognizing the absence of quality black hair care professionals in her area, Jan, along with her friend opened up a hair salon in her apartment. The small business simply called “My Girl’s Place,” offered hair services, dinner, and a movie for $75! Not knowing how to say no to a challenge, Jan once accepted the task of giving a client layers although she’d never even cut bangs before.
While in Japan, Jan captivated the attention and amusement of friends stateside by sending write ups of her experiences in Japan in a series entitled “There’s a Chocolate Chip in the Noodles.” Although the speed of life prevented Jan from completing the book, she didn’t abandon her desire to create a book based upon her personal experiences. When necessity created a need, Jan put her vision on paper and penned her first book “It Is What It Is, But It Doesn’t Have To Be That Way.”
Not willing to let another summer pass without her reaching her goal of completing her book, Jan went to Raleigh, North Carolina and spent her days writing and watching TV while staying with her eldest brother, Tony.
In late 2009, Jan opened her first corporation by launching Top Shelf Books Publishing House, LLC. Jan’s book was self published and released in 2010. She’s currently writing a second book; this one is targeted at teens. “There’s a real need for it, I talk to my students every day, I’m sure they can benefit from a book written directly to and for them.” Jan, like many of her students, could have benefited from more interesting, yet, instructional reading selections that were targeted to teens.
A native of Decatur, Georgia , Jan attended Southwest DeKalb High School before she became a Literature major at Agnes Scott College also in Decatur . While at Agnes Scott, Frazier received training as a prejudice reduction workshop leader. Along with her peers, Jan led workshops to help train students, faculty and staff members along with the school’s administration.
Frazier currently teaches Creative Writing and various English courses at Cedar Grove High School in Ellenwood, Georgia.