Children’s Book Author Anna Nyakana Talks About Inspiring Kids

By Peter Page Peter Page has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team
Published on February 18, 2022

Children’s book author Anna Nyakana is launching a movement with her stories of the indefatigable character Niyah Zuri. Her goal is to inspire, motivate, encourage and enable children to become future leaders and advocates.

She is building a formidable business in the process. In honor of the fifth anniversary of the Niyah Zuri books, Anna Nyakana is launching her Niyah Zuri Movement for the youth in the Digital & Crypto Market, with the Niyah Zuri NFT that became available Feb. 25th via OpenSea. Nyakana is also collaborating with a visual artist/muralist/tattoo artist Reed, from Atlanta.

We asked Anna Nyakana about her writing, what inspires her, and how she is growing her larger business.

GD: You’re the author of two children’s books, among other accomplishments. How do the books you are writing for children now compare with the books you read as a child?

Anna Nyakana: I have strategically written The “Niyah Zuri” Series to unlock each reader; to provide them with true historical knowledge of self guided by an awakened and conscious understanding of discovering how to fulfill their highest potential. These aren’t the standard historical-fiction books that I encountered as a child, that attempted to teach me to only fantasize about fairy tales. My books are here to educate the youth of their true worth and inspire them to take their dreams and make them their reality.

GD: What were your favorite books when you were a child? What are your thoughts about those books now that you are an adult and are writing children’s books yourself?

Anna Nyakana: As an ESL (English as a Second Language) student, I was assigned various books to read in order to practice and master the English language. However, I could never resonate with the stories for they didn’t represent me. Then, one day when I was eight years-old I found a Merriam-Webster dictionary in the back of a classroom unapologetically tossed in a dusty corner; I swiped it (ha ha). This dictionary became my favorite book; I studied a word each day and committed it to memory and practice; I would then go on to quickly master English ahead of my classmates, contradicting my ESL teacher’s declaration that I had the “odds stacked against me” because my first languages of Russian and German were “too harsh.” She obviously didn’t see my potential.

GD: What, or who, was the inspiration for the Niyah Zuri protagonist in your two books?

Anna Nyakana: Niyah Zuri is ME; I AM Niyah Zuri. She contains all of the attributes that separated me from the majority as a child and all the things I wished contained. She is the duality of my younger self and my now higher self. She was birthed in adversity shortly after immigrating to the U.S., in the forgotten projects of Stamford, CT. The challenges of my childhood environment became the inspiration for the triumphs of my now purpose. Niyah Zuri literally means “Beautiful Purpose” in Swahili.

GD: I keep thinking of you as an author of children’s books, maybe because I enjoyed reading to my own children long ago and now I enjoy reading to my grandsons, but you are also a producer, a singer/songwriter, a motivational speaker, community activist, and you are running two businesses. Where do you find the energy for all that? Is there a goal you are seeking by all these overlapping endeavors?

Anna Nyakana: My purpose to empower our youth is my fuel each day; to not let that younger version of me down that I see in the eyes of every child I encounter. It may appear as if I have many overlapping endeavors yet they are actually all aligned in strategic harmony towards the same vision. I’m taking every pathway for our youth, whether it currently exists or if I have to pioneer it myself; I wish someone did that for me as a child, so believe me when I say, they are worth all my efforts. I hear “you do a lot” many times a week and yet if the world is beginning to get uncomfortable with what I’m outputting, then get ready to get even more uncomfortable, for I have so much more in store.

GD: You have two sons of your own. How does their schooling and the society they are growing up in compare with your schooling and the society you grew up in?

Anna Nyakana: It’s a very different world compared to the 90’s schooling and housing projects I experienced. However, the underlying issues and indoctrinations still exist. Thankfully, I was chosen to become their Mother and in return God blessed me with a clear mission along with the blueprint to save the youth; by showing them how to save themselves.

GD: Anything else you want to mention that I have not thought to ask about?

Anna Nyakana: The Niyah Zuri Movement is celebrating five years of impact for our youth! In honor of this milestone, I am launching the Official Niyah Zuri NFT, which will be available through the OpenSea platform on February 25th, 2022. Black and Brown communities have been systematically uneducated in financial literacy. Although many of us have “caught up” over generations, I want to focus our People on the emerging wave of digital currency. This is going to grow the Niyah Zuri Tribe into a TRUE NATION of Unlimited Wealth and Potential.  Reparations are never coming – We’d BANKRUPT the WORLD – Let’s Claim what’s OURS!

By Peter Page Peter Page has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team

Journalist verified by Muck Rack verified

Peter Page is an Editor-at-Large at Grit Daily. He is available to record live, old-school style interviews via Zoom, and run them at Grit Daily and Apple News, or BlockTelegraph for a fee.Formerly at, he began his journalism career as a newspaper reporter long before print journalism had even heard of the internet, much less realized it would demolish the industry. The years he worked as a police reporter are a big influence on his world view to this day. Page has some degree of expertise in environmental policy, the energy economy, ecosystem dynamics, the anthropology of urban gangs, the workings of civil and criminal courts, politics, the machinations of government, and the art of crystallizing thought in writing.

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