Today we are joined not by one author but by two. Marcus and Ashley Kusi–authors of Communication in Marriage: How to Communicate with Your Spouse Without Fighting and First Year of Marriage: The Newlywed’s Guide to Building a Strong Foundation and Adjusting to Married Life–are here!
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
MARCUS: I am originally from Ghana, Africa. Ashley is from Vermont, US. We live in Burlington, Vermont. I love to play/watch soccer and cook delicious meals. Spending quality time with my family is one of my favorite hobbies. Ashley loves getting new cookbooks and finding creative ways to make healthier versions of her favorite foods for our family. We really value our time together as a family.
By day, I am a Business Analyst by profession and Ashley is an amazing stay-at-home-mom. By night we podcast, blog and publish our books about married life and the lessons we have learned to build a strong foundation and keep our marriage happy.
I studied Computer Information Systems at Castleton State college and Ashley studied Psychology and Accounting, until we had our first child.
2. When did you start writing?
We started writing seriously in 2013. It began with our blog, and two years later, we published our first book: Communication in Marriage: How to Communicate with Your Spouse Without Fighting. Ashley has always had a love for writing ever since she was young; it was actually her dream to be an author.
3. Why did you start writing?
We wanted to share our marriage experiences and things we have learned to help other couples. We felt like we had information and real life experiences that other newly married couples could learn from and hopefully not need to make the same mistakes we did. We thought about how we could save a marriage from ending in divorce and agreed that building that foundation was the best place to start.
4. Tell us a little bit about your newest book’s title.
We had different titles to choose from. We knew the book was going to be a guide to help newlyweds build a strong foundation for their marriage. So naturally, “First year of marriage, newlyweds guide, and building a strong foundation” needed to be in the title. It took us a while to finally agree on the title we have today.
5. How do you feel about outlines? Are you for or against them?
ASHLEY: We love outlines! It makes it easier for us to write better and serves as a guide for us. Marcus usually gets the bones of the outline together and then we go through it together to arrange it the way we think is best.
6. What is your favorite book genre?
MARCUS: I prefer non-fiction and read paperback editions. Ashley used to enjoy fiction, but now she primarily reads health and wellness books and publications.
7. What are you currently reading?
MARCUS: I am reading Quitter by Jon Acuff.
8. What is your favorite book?
MARCUS: I do not have a favorite book because every book I read is different and provides something unique for me. My favorite book with relation to marriage would be The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. Ashley would add the book Boundaries and Boundaries in Marriage by Dr. Henry Cloud. Those books have helped our relationship open up in many ways. The Five Love Languages helped us to be conscious of how each other receives love so that we can love each other more effectively by speaking each other’s love language. Boundaries helped show us and reassure us that there should be boundaries within our marriage as well as around our relationship.
9. Any project in the works?
We always have a few projects in the pipeline. We get many ideas and keep a list going so we always know what our next step is. Connection will be the next topic we most likely will delve into and of course we are working on a monthly podcast episode.
10. How long does it usually take you to write a book?
Between 5 to 14 months. It depends on everything going on in our lives.
11. What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
MARCUS: Choose a deadline for your manuscript to be done and another deadline for your book launch. In addition, make sure your book is something you will be proud to read.
ASHLEY: Just do it. There will always be excuses to keep putting it on the shelf, but if you have a message you want to get across; then take that chance and do it.
And now for a game of “Which Do/Would You Prefer?”
1. Books or movies?
2. Summer or winter?
3. Cake or ice-cream?
4. Car or motorcycle?
5. Ebook or physical book?
6. Nights out or nights in?
7. Living in the city or living in the country?
In the country
8. Making a phone call or sending a text?
Sending a text
9. Travelling by car or travelling by airplane?
10. Staying in a hotel or going camping?
11. Working in a group or working alone?
Working in a group
12. To find true love or to win the lottery?
Find true love
13. Reading or writing?