Working Women Wednesday’s (WCW) – Casilya Smith of Sil the Writer & Sil Digital

This Month’s #WCW is Casilya Smith of Sil the Writer & Sil Digital. Casilya is a mother, teacher, photographer, blogger, and PUBLISHED AUTHOR. Casilya is one of the strongest and supportive women I know. She may be going through things in her life but you can guarantee she will be the one who will uplift you before herself.

I remember at my most recent event I shared my story of disappointment with how graduate school has gone. Casilya was the first to tell me that no matter what not to be disappointed, but to be encouraged and to keep pushing. In so many words, she reminded me to never give up. But, her testimony is even greater! Everything she has done and plans to do will make her a force to be reckoned with. She is genuine, passionate, talented, inspirational and encouraging. She is that friend who everyone needs in their lives. She inspires me to be great. She inspires everyone around her to be great. I can’t express that enough.

I wanted to feature Casilya this month because I am so proud of how much she has accomplished. Her book “TPTDE: The Little Pink Book: The Poem That Doesn’t End,” is available on Amazon. Her latest book “Dear King,” will be released on June 19th.  She will also have a Book Release event on June 29th and you can reserve your spot here, but spots are limited! It is an honor to have her as a friend, but also to see the legacy she is building, it is phenomenal. This Queen deserves all the recognition, and that again is why she is my WCW for June.

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For those who may not know, could you tell them about who you are and what you do?

I am Casilya Smith, artistically known as SIL. I am a vibrant life enthusiast born and raised in Houston, TX. I received my formal education from Florida A&M and Florida State University where I learned that the gifts that I possess needed no degree, yet those colleges poured experiences into me that helped me evolve into the woman that I am today! Since moving back to Houston, I take on the roles of a 7th grade English teacher, photographer, blogger, published author, poet, and a full-time mom. Some people call me a modern superwoman, but I’m just fulfilling God’s plan.

Could you tell us about Sil the Writer and Sil Digital? 

At the start of my day and at the end of my day, I like to label myself as a creator! SILTheWriter is my main brand that houses all of my poetic and literary work. I blog, write relationship and life quotes, and I have published two books: TPTDE: The Little Pink Book and Dear King. My first book stands for “The Poem That Doesn’t End” and it speaks to the scorned woman, the broken-hearted, the empowered woman, the lost souls, the fatherless daughters, and effortlessly leaves you healed beautifully with all of your pieces. “Dear King” will be my first children’s book that is aimed to empower our black son’s and daughters.

SIL Digital is my photography and creative design service. I’ve done everything from styling and directing fashion, children’s, senior, and couples shoots. I have an eye for finding beauty in unconventional things and places and I think that is what has aided in my success.

Where did the ideas of Sil the Writer and Sil Digital come from?

I started my brand because I realized how necessary and powerful my voice really was. My words speak and they also heal. My visual design and photography speak through making magic out of every moment. And my lifestyle speaks for itself —it speaks survival, it speaks aspiration, encouragement, possibilities, and hope. Women need to be empowered by positive women, and that’s what my brand represents!

In my opinion, we all have situations in life we encounter that we can share that empower and encourage the next. Did you face any adversities growing up, or even in your adulthood? If so, tell us about them and how you overcame them?

Adversity? Oh yeah! My entire life has been nothing but lessons and tests. There are still some tests that I have gone through where the lessons are still to be determined. Now that I’m aware of what depression is, I would say that I grew up pretty depressed. No one would have known because I learned from toxic cycles, to smile even when I wasn’t happy.  My parents divorced when I was in elementary because my dad struggled with infidelity. I used to think my mom was my hero because she was so strong to leave with two daughters, but that all got jaded when she chose to stay with my ex-step-dad. I realize now that some people rather be in pain than to be alone.  He was very verbally abusive and made it known that he loved my mom but never wanted kids. We were forced to hide what we went through. I think that is when I first picked up my trait of staying busy because I never wanted to be home when he was there. From middle school to high school, I was in: band, choir, cheer, dance, the school newspaper, AVID, and countless other organizations. As busy as I kept myself, I still wasn’t happy. I was feeling the void of not having a real relationship with my dad. I can’t remember hearing at all during my childhood anything besides “you’re pretty for a dark-skinned girl”. I was always friend-zoned—never light enough, petite enough, always living in my sister’s shadows because was all those things. I felt alone and unwanted up until I decide to leave the cycle and go to college out of state. At FAMU, all black was beautiful! It was like a melting pot of melanin! It took years, but my confidence slowly started to form.

It was all good until my college best friend was murdered tragically. During that darkness, I went back to a toxic relationship and in the midst conceived my son. I was fighting for my life spiritually and knew that only God could clean me up and allow me to persevere.

Since college, I have had more obstacles such as: being almost killed with my son in a car accident where we were rear-ended by a bus, losing my maternal grandfather to cancer, and recently losing my mom unexpectedly a few months ago. I’m okay though! Because since giving it all to God, I have obtained a certain peace of mind. I no longer question “why me”, when another test comes I just cry out “Lord help me”. And he does every time. Is life sometimes ugly? Yes, but the parts that make it beautiful are worth it!

What are your short and long term goals for yourself and your brand?

Short term I want to just keep dedicating myself and my time to creating! I will be hosting my book signing event for “Dear King” on June 29, 2019! I will also start working on Volume 2 of TPTDE: The Little Pink Book!

Long term goals are to simply keep inspiring and building a legacy! I eventually will retire from teaching in a few years and run my own media company! Just stay tuned, but my testimony is going to be so beautiful!

Being an entrepreneur has its ups and downs, do you prefer a “9-5,” Entrepreneur life, or Both? 

Eventually, I want my 9 to 5 to be my entrepreneur life. I feel like we were placed here not to be slaves to a system but to be free in the pursuit of our passions! I think when we take that leap of faith and do the things we love and not just what’s comfortable, everything else including profit will come!

What have you accomplished so far that you are most proud of? What do you think you can work on more?

Healing myself and allowing my work to heal others has been my biggest accomplishment! People come to me all the time and are inspired by my ability to handle every obstacle with grace and optimism. That’s more fulfilling than anything else! I am a dreamer, so I’m just working on believing in the levels of my dreams as much as I believe in everyone else’s!

What is next for Sil the Writer and Sil Digital? Where do you envision being within the next few years?

Again, I will be promoting my new book “Dear King” all summer! I am definitely also looking to partner with some other writers to collaborate on some magic! Soon I will be initiating a women empowerment circle called No S.I.S ( No Suffering In Silence) in the Houston area! I have been motivated by my mom’s untimely passing to just help as many women as I can to break these cycles!

What are some tips or advice you could share with anyone who may want to follow the same career path as you?

Just take the first step! What do you have to lose? You never want to get to the end of your life and have all of this unused purpose! Surround yourself with people that dream big like you that will not only clap when you win but be there every step of the way! You deserve to know what happens when you don’t settle in love, life, or career! It’s waiting on the other side of your comfort zone!

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How can fellow readers reach you?

 

Brittani, themakingsofb.com (1)

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