Thank you, 2018

I normally post these reflections on Road to Relovery, but 2019 has a new vision for that — you’ll see more of my thoughts here. Well. What a year.

When I first stepped out to reinvent myself and really become the person I always wanted to be, I adopted a mantra to get me through the tough times: #andshewillflourish.

Sidebar, this has oddly come full circle. I quoted Louis C.K. in the article linked above, and here we are four years later, I am rising, and he is, well… learning…


I needed to remind myself that no matter how dark the night is, the sun will always reappear. I told myself just as winter always comes, so does summer. I reminded myself that when you go through something difficult, you still go through it. Through. Motion. Movement. No one says “I’m going into something never to emerge again.”

No, you go through. And so I told myself, when you do go through, and through you will, you will flourish. You will be fine and you will flourish.

And so, while not short, or easy, or seamless, or fully pleasant, or smooth or comfortable, I am going through something and finally seeing that light at the end.

I have a lovely home. My boys are thriving. I have incredible friends. I adore my circle of chosen family. I transformed my hobby business into an official business. I republished my first three books in the format I always dreamed. I sold nearly 400 of them. Independently. I’ve started two other novels. I attended 15 events in the name of The Hibouleans. I have about 50 consistent subscribers to the first podcast my business launched just three months ago. And all of this… within the last year. I’ve kept my head down. I’ve stayed focused on tiny wins. And so. When I stand up and look back, I see how much land I’ve covered and how many mountains I’ve scaled. And no, I didn’t do it alone. Keep your friends close, kiddies. The real ones. The have your back in many moment ones.

I’m happy. I’m content. I’m not just good — I’m thriving.

2018 has been good to me. And as this year, finally one more full of abundance than scarcity, closes, I am looking forward to 2019. Because my mantra has arrived. Flourish. There’s no more #andshewillflourish; the will is gone… she is flourishing now.

Octavia Reese BESTNINE

Looking back on those early adventure days, I used a fun goal – A Word A Day – to keep trekking along on my Road to Relovery. This year, I’ll be doing A Haiku A Day. I haven’t written a haiku since fourth grade. This will be fun.

#staycurious #sheisflourishing

An amazing season for Tavinda Media

Hey friends and followers, have you seen what’s happening at Tavinda Media lately?

Well, there’s a lot since we launched at the end of August 2018. Here’s a recap of the last three months:

  • Stalled. co-host Nan Higgins has signed a contract with Bold Strokes Books for her novel, London Undone! Way to go, Nan!
  • FML is ramping up for their first full Episode and have launched a brand new way to keep in touch via email. Subscribe here and never miss a forking story!
  • Octavia Reese (yeah, that’s me!), author of The Hibouleans has her last book signing and performance coming up December 15 at Soulful Chicago Holiday Book Fair. Last year, she started with one volume, this year she has the first THREE installments of the series.
  • Tavinda Media podcasts are radiating across the pod-waves. Find Stalled., FML and Dream on multiple podcast libraries including iTunes and Spotify!
  • Tavinda Media is also on Patreon. If you like what you hear and want to contribute to the whole team’s efforts, please don’t hesitate to pledge onto one of the patron tiers.

If you haven’t yet, head over to to learn more and stay in touch. So many great things to come!

Tavinda Media News

Holiday Joy

What’s more joyful than singing a favorite holiday tune with some of the loveliest people on this Earth?

You got it — not much.

Check out this clip, one in a series of Christmas Songs from the wildly talented Jazelle Morris.

Don’t forget to rate, share, and subscribe to her YouTube channel!

I am my normal

I’m not bipolar. I don’t have high highs and low lows.

I just have high highs and higher highs.

And that gives me a larger-than-average capacity to be active and create stuff. I don’t think it’s an illness but it is definitely an abnormality. I’m frequently misinterpreted.

I get a lot of microagressive comments like “ew just looking at you makes me tired.”
Or “just hearing that stresses me out.”
Or “Octavia you’re such an over achiever.”
Yeah maybe compared to you. Jerk.
Or my favorite, “You do TOO MUCH.”
No. I. Don’t.

But whatever. It works for me. I don’t do anything out of the ordinary for me. I am my normal.
And yes, I do sleep.

On the other side of that is all of the support and cheers and encouragement from my friends.
“Wow, you stay busy!”
Or “You’re doing what I always wanted to do.”
Or “I want to be you when I grow up.”

Look, I may not be rich or famous or even moderately debt free and I pretty much just barely pay all my bills and yes, I just cried this morning…
I’m living my best life and I am really truly and honestly so comfortable in my skin and in love with ME.

And if me being my best me helps you be your best you, then let’s do this life thing together, baby!

I’m Octavia. I’m an author, an artist, a cellist, a dancer, a mother, a speaker, the founder of Tavinda Media, the host of three podcasts, and I’m just getting started.

Follow all my stuff: 

Tavinda Media on Facebook, @TavindaMedia

Stalled. on Facebook, @Stalledpodcast





Dream – Premiers Sept 24 2018 — Tavinda Media

Do you dream? Some say dreams are a series of random brain signals that turn into images and sensations in our minds. Others claim our suppressed urges and desires boldly rise to the surface when we’re unconscious. And some are confident dreams are simply the trash compactor of our unneeded memories; the nightly clear browsing…

via Dream – Premiers Sept 24 2018 — Tavinda Media

Panelists Discuss Black Panther Film at Maywood Fest

Black Panther Panel Discussion 

 maywood fest black panther

Pictured above:  Novella “The Hibouleans v. 1, by Octavia Reese (2nd from left), Jeff Johnson, and Dr. Yaounde Olu, NCGR III, author of “Almanac of Unfavorable Timing”


For Release 9/12/18              Nzingha Nommo, 708-420-1155



Nestled inside the Maywood Fest’s showing of the film Black Panther, Afriware Books will host a Black Panther Panel Discussion on Friday, Sept. 14, 2018 starting at 6pm.  The Maywood Fest is a three day event 9/14-9/16 which takes place at Veteran’s Park, 125 5th Ave. in Maywood, IL.  We are pleased to have three distinguished subject matter experts including Jeff Johnson, Octavia Reese, and Dr. Yaounde Olu.  Afriware Books’ owner, Nzingha Nommo is honored to be facilitating the panel discussion. “It was a delight to invite three people from diverse professional backgrounds who I’ve enjoyed discussing the film with.”

Jeff Johnson is an aficionado of film, television and comic books.  Jeff studied film criticism at Roger Ebert’s alma mater, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, while completing a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. Jeff provided consulting services to filmmakers while earning an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. Professionally, Mr. Johnson is a Director of Process Improvement at USG Corporation, a leading manufacturer of building products and innovative solutions around the world.

Author and cellist Octavia Reese, will also join us.  She is  the proud mom of three boys, and is a relentless creative, speaking life into women through writing, music, dance and art.  Ms. Reese is the author of a young adult sci-fi fantasy series, The Hibouleans, featuring heroic and brilliant young women of color. She’s also composed a musical score to accompany to the novella series. 

And finally, Dr. Yaounde Olu, an award winning editorial cartoonist for The Chicago Crusader in Chicago will join us.  Dr. Yaounde’ Olu is additionally a native Chicagoan, illustrator, cable television producer, astrological scientist, researcher, educator, founder and artistic director of the Drum Divas, composer, and indie comic and graphic novel publisher.  Dr. Olu holds a BS in Education from Chicago State University; an MA in Fine and Performing Arts from Governors State University, and a PhD in Health Sciences/Holistic Medicine from the Union Institute. She also holds certificates in Manuscript Editing, Book Publishing, and Publication Design from the University of Chicago.  

The panel will discuss the cultural significance, creativity and career paths surrounding the success of the film Black Panther.  The format will include introductions, film commentaries and Q&A from the audience.

Afriware Books will have Black Panther comic books, and merchandise to compliment the occasion. Octavia Reese and Dr. Olu will have merchandise available.