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Achieve Your Dreams With Author Marvin Williams

Marvin Williams recently published his first book, an autobiography called, Secondary Break: An NBA Dad's Story. The book follows Marvin's life from a childhood in an abusive, alcoholic home to stunning success as a national girls' basketball coach, and preparing his son for the NBA. In the 1960s, Marvin worked the tobacco fields 16 hours a day at 11 years old, with no food, no break. As a teenager, he played basketball with Larry and Michael Jordan. His love and passion for the game would take him on a lifelong journey of setbacks, and triumph. Marvin never gave up on his passions and dreams. He wrote the book to show young people and their parents that with trust and hard work, anyone can achieve the life of their dreams.

Marvin has a background in the United States Navy and has coached basketball for over thirty years. Many of his student players became national champions and won 4-year scholarships to Stamford and other colleges. His son, Marvin Williams Jr., played in the NBA for over fifteen years. Currently, Williams lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, and is focusing all of his attention on writing another book. Continuing reading for his exclusive interview.


Can you tell us about your background?

I was born July 10, 1964, in Brooklyn NY. My family resided in Brownsville NY until I was thirteen. My parents were Ellis Williams and Horace Bennerman. My mother was a stay-at-home mother, while my father Horace worked on a televised cooking show for eight years. I attended PS156 while living in Brownsville NY. My school was located right down the street from our home. I enjoyed attending PS 156 this is where my love of basketball began. One of my friends from school spent countless hours showing and teaching me the game of basketball. During this time I also developed a great interest in our Black Leaders. Leaders like Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, Muhammad Ali, and the Black Panthers. I can remember the Black Panthers being very involved in our community. The Black Panthers developed a Summer Program where they would feed the Black Inner-city kids. During these times is where I began to develop character and myself as a young man growing up in NY.

In 1972 my family decided to pack up and leave NY to relocate to Wallace NC, a very small town. This move was to be closer to my mother's parents. While living in Wallace NC my love for basketball continued to flourish. In Wallace NC I would spend my Summers cropping tobacco, I still would play basketball whenever I got a chance. In 1975 we moved from my grandparent’s home to our own home. I further my education at Pender Junior High school from 1975 to 1979, still playing basketball. It was during my time at Pender Junior Highschool that I met basketball players like Micheal Jordan and his brother Larry Jordan. I also met Kenny Gattison. We would spend our Summers playing against each other at the local community parks in the area. In 1980 I attended Pender High, my school would compete against Micheal Jordan and Kenny Gattison high school teams.

After finishing Highschool I joined the United States Navy, where I was told I could play for the US Navy team. While in the Navy I fathered my son Marvin G. Williams Jr. After serving four years in the US Navy I left to attend college. I attended Olympic College in Bremerton Washington. I played basketball for two years at Olympic College. I would later transfer to Warner Pacific University where I would play my last two years of college basketball. After leaving Warner Pacific University I went on to have several professional basketball tryouts. After not being able to clinch a spot on any of the teams or make it to the NBA, I decided to start coaching basketball. My coaching career lasted for about twenty-five years. During my coaching time, I coached girls and boys on all levels. My son MJ Jr. began to show a liking and interest in basketball. I began teaching him the game of basketball when he was ten years old. I continued to coach my son MJ Jr until he attended UNC, where he spent one year before entering the NBA draft. Marvin Jr. entered the draft in 2005 where he would be the second overall pick to the Atlanta Hawks. I continued supporting my son on and off the court for his fifteen-year career in the NBA. My son and I currently live in Charlotte NC, where I have become a grandfather to two granddaughters.

How did your book "Secondary Break" come about?

After taking several trips back to Bremerton WA to visit family and friends, I would hold long conversations with my Pastor Bishop Lawerence Robertson. During those conversations, we would reflect on my life, and Bishop would always say you have a story to be told. He had authored several books and also inspired me to do the same. Bishop spoke to me about the process of writing a book and the work that would go into completing a book. To begin my process of writing my book I started to journal. After journaling about my life and reflecting back over my life I found it to be therapeutic. The stories that I recall from childhood and my years of playing and loving the game of basketball lead me in the direction of my book. These journals would later turn into my book "Secondary Break: An NBA Dad Story"

What inspired you to write it?

After spending countless hours journaling and reflecting I knew that I could probably inspire someone with my book. So while sitting on my back patio I made the decision to turn my life story into a book. I knew that if I had made it through all the adversities in life someone else reading my story could see themself in what I experienced in life. I wanted to let potential readers of my book know that just because life may start out difficult doesn't mean that your life can't turn around for the better. I really just wanted others to be inspired to follow their dreams and push through no matter the circumstances.

How would you describe your book?

I would describe my book as an Inspirational Autobiography. A book about persevering through adversities. Also, a book that would foster hope in the reader. It's a book about having a dream and trying to chase that dream. A book about what we as individuals might think our lives should be, but not knowing that our obstacles and hard work could lead us to help foster someone else's dreams. It also shows how a dream that a father pursued led to the ultimate achievement of a son.

What would you say you learned from writing this book?

First I learned a lot about myself, being able to write down my story helped me with understanding some of the family and life challenges I experienced. I learned that it took a lot of hard work and determination to finish a book. That dedication was key for me to find success with writing this book. I learned that everything is possible if you stay focused and preserve through obstacles.

Who do you think the book will resonate with the most?

I think my book will resonate with those individuals that have a dream and feel that their dreams are unattainable. It will resonate with those readers that are looking for an inspirational story. My book will also resonate with those individuals that have a love for the game of basketball. It will be a joyful read for those individuals that are sports fans. Also, parents that have a child or children that feel it's impossible for their kids to obtain their dreams. It will serve as a great read for young adolescents that may be experiencing a rough childhood and think they have no way out.

What do you hope readers take away from the book?

I would hope that readers of my book would take away that no matter how the circumstances may look in the beginning does not mean this is how it will end. I would like the readers to know that you can dream, and dreams do come true. I would hope that the individuals that read the book are inspired. I would hope readers continue to push through no matter the adversities thrown their way. Know that they matter and that they can overcome challenges and be successful.

Are you currently working on any other projects?

Yes, I'm currently working on trying to focus on writing another book. I would like to write a book that would be used for readers as a motivational tool. I'm also continuing to work on more speaking engagements to help inspire others.

For more information on Marvin Williams please visit.


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