Guest Author Janice Sampson

J. Sampson

Writer’s Interview from the desk of…
J. L. Sampson, Author


My Big Brother Is in Heaven Now addresses one of life’s most difficult journeys… the death of someone we love. In this inspiring true story, the author’s approach to the weighty topics of death, grief, and bereavement was crafted in an uplifting and palatable manner for young readers.

My Big Brother Is in Heaven Now is a carefully composed narrative, told from the perspective of a young boy named Omar. Eight-year-old Omar experienced the death of an older sibling and warmheartedly shares his family’s journey. Readers of all ages will be encouraged by this touching and enlightening real-life story.

Book Cover

Tell us more!

Q. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

A. I didn’t really start taking my writing serious until maybe around early 2014. That’s when I accepted an opportunity to write promotional materials and web content for a non-profit organization.

Q. Your new book addresses the difficult subjects of death and grief. Why did you decide to write about these topics?

A. Well, just as the sweet joys of living is a part of our reality, so is the intrusive impact of death and the bitter aftermath that can certainly reshape our lives. Because everyone will experience grief at some point and capacity in their lifetime, it’s so important to find the proper grief mentoring resources for your family. This book, however, was written to celebrate the life and love that God allowed my son Jay to share with us for seventeen amazing years.

Q. What was your hardest scene to write?

A. Most definitely the scene when my youngest son Omar had an epiphany of the finality of death. He finally understood it wasn’t a temporary event, but rather a permanent separation that would never allow us to see his brother again in this life. I still vividly remember the sadness of his little face and his heart sickened words, when he came to understand that my oldest son, Jay, truly would not be coming home anymore.

Q. What was an early experience where you learned that written language had power?

A. I would say… I started to notice maybe around my early years of high school. That mainly stemmed from people’s reactions to my yearbook signings and poems. But many years later, as a young adult in the corporate world, I honed my writing skills. I learned very quickly the power and importance of fluent written communication.

Q. What’s next, do you have plans to write another children’s book?

A. Though I’d love to write more children’s books, I don’t have an immediate plan to do so. However, I have a few speaking engagements coming up and I’m currently working on my first documentary film, so stay tuned!

Q. Documentary film sounds quite interesting… What led you into the world of film?

A. It’s another opportunity to challenge myself to explore and discover other hidden treasures or gifts of my inner artist. I believe each of us can unlock the store house that’s filled with treasures great and small. But once we discover our gifts, cultivate and master them, they must be released and shared with others. That’s when the blessings overflow.

Q. What is your favorite childhood book?

A. Everything Dr. Seuss of course!!

Q. The release of your new book My Big Brother Is in Heaven Now is an exciting event for you. It’s truly a sentimental, honest, informative and very inspiring book. Please know, we’re all cheering for you, wishing you the very best and sending positive vibes to you. So, in closing… how can we keep up and in touch with you?

A. Wow!... Well, thank you so very much for allowing me this opportunity to share more about my book and my journey. I’m sincerely appreciative and humbled by the well wishes, positive energy and feedback. May all the glory be unto the Most High GOD, because it’s all possible by His grace. And though I’m a ‘newbie’ to social media, I’m looking forward to connecting with a community of literary friends!... I can be reached at: jslihpresence@gmail.com

Get your copy of My Big Brother Is in Heaven Now at: Amazon or Barnes & Noble

* Note: This excerpt of this interview was conducted on May 1, 2019 by LIHP Health & Wellness.