As an extension of her creative and activist self, Yarbrough turned to writing in the 1970’s. Her published works have appeared in The New York Times, The Black Collegian Magazine, and The Journal of African Civilization. In 1979 her first book, Cornrows, was published by Paperstar/Putnam Grosset. Later, three more books followed: The Shimmershine Queens, The Little Tree Growing in the Shade, and Tamika and the Wisdom Rings. Yarbrough is presently working on a new family book, scheduled for release in 2010.
Quite naturally, Nana Camille Yarbrough is an educator. Her passion to teach is evidenced in her serving as a faculty member in the Black Studies Department at City College of New York (CUNY) for twelve years. She taught dance there. She also taught the Katherine Dunham technique at Southern Illinois University. Over the years and to this day, she has lectured at countless colleges, universities, conferences, festivals, and community events across the country, ranging from Howard University to the University of Wisconsin; from the Brooklyn Museum to the National Action Network, and many others.
In 1994, Yarbrough was enthroned by ABLADEI, Inc. (Ghanian), GA as Naa Kuokor Agyman I Queen Mother to the late Dr. John Henrik Clarke. She is also founder of the Throne House of Harriet Tubman. In 2004, she was again enthroned in the village of Agogo-Asanti, Ghana as Nana Tabuoa Tonko II. Such an honor is reserved for very few people.
One can’t help but ask how is it that a woman of her season and stature remains compelled to perform and educate on a regular basis, rather than rest on her laurels? She explains “Being a griot or storyteller is not a role that I choose to play. I know this is what I was born to do. What fuels me is the richness of African/African-American culture. This is what energizes me. I come from a kinship line that was re-born to re-tell our story over and over again. We must tell it to the young, tell it to the old…everyone grows when our family story is told!”