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An Interview with Shanita Liu, author of Dear Durga

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Shanita Liu, MPA, CPC, is a mom of three warriors, veteran spouse, salsa dancer, TEDx speaker, and Fulbright Scholar. She created Coach Shanita, Inc. so that she could use her skills as a transformational coach, reiki master, mystic, and speaker to help folks live victorious lives.

Shanita is the eight-time award-winning author of Dear Durga: A Mom’s Guide to Activate Courage and Emerge Victorious, a self-help memoir that debuted in January 2023.

When Shanita is not empowering people to activate their courage, she’s indulging in 90’s music and milk chocolate. To learn more about Shanita’s Indo-Guyanese NYC-bred background, head to

You can also check out her 2021 TEDx talk “How to Activate Courage,” as seen on

For victory dances, rap songs, and book bonuses, connect with @coachshanita on Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

What other professions have you worked in? What’s something about you that your readers wouldn’t know?

Fun Facts: I was a book presenter on “Reading Rainbow” and pursued professional salsa dancing for a few years before I had kids.

Tell us the story of your book’s title. Was it easy to find, or did it take forever?

True story: the title came to me three years before I decided to write the book. Not only did I find a journal entry noting this in 2018, but I also started a folder on my laptop called “Dear Durga-BOOK.” When I embarked on the writing journey in late 2021, my spiritual guides told me the book was already written, meaning that I had the stories inside of me…all I had to do was sit down and type them!

How did it feel when you first saw your book cover? Or when you first held your book in your hands?

It took my breath away to see the digital and paperback versions. I worked with an Indo-Caribbean artist named Seema Shakti who I trusted with my vision, and she brought it to life with her magic!

If your book had a soundtrack, what are some songs that would be on it?

Get this: my book has a real soundtrack! There’s not only a discography, but there’s a Spotify playlist, which you can find linked on my book page. Some of my 90s favs mentioned include SNAP’s “The Power,” MC Hammer’s “U Can’t Touch This,” and Wu-Tang Clan’s “C.R.E.A.M.”

What is one thing you hope readers take away from reading your book? How do you envision your perfect reader?

I hope that my story of navigating the trials of parenthood, unemployment, entrepreneurship, and intergenerational traumas will inspire you to activate courage and victoriously forge your own fulfilling path. (And contrary to the subtitle, you don’t have to be a mama to get value from it!)

What new writing projects are you currently working on? Or, other projects that are not writing?

I recently completed the companion guide to Dear Durga titled Victorious Me: Daily Activities to Become Your Most Courageous and Fulfilled Self. If you’d like a free copy, please send a message on my website’s contact page or send a DM on Instagram @coachshanita.

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Atmosphere Press is a selective hybrid publisher founded in 2015 on the principles of Honesty, Transparency, Professionalism, Kindness, and Making Your Book Awesome. Our books have won dozens of awards and sold tens of thousands of copies. If you’re interested in learning more, or seeking publication for your own work, please explore the links below.