I’m from a small town, but we have big dreams. I was born in the 70’s but am truly the epitome of an 80’s baby! My parents instilled in me to work hard; you can go as far as you want to with a good education. My parents ingrained this in me and because of that, I strive to be the best in whatever I do. I am an educator, but first and foremost, I am a wife and a mother of three. I take pride in what my children and husband have accomplished and strive to be a positive role model and inspiration to my children to be the best and that hard work pays off.
I am an avid reader and naturally my love for reading spilled out into writing.
Then came the challenge from my students to write a short story when we were studying pirates in North Carolina history. I took up the challenge and discovered that I could write!!! Whenever I get the chance, I put pen to paper and let all of the characters and plots that tumble around in my head come on out!!
1) First, I want to thank you for taking the time to do this interview with me! When did you know that writing is what you were called to do? What is it about being a writer that you love the most? What about being a writer frustrates you the most?
Oh. No problem!! Thanks for having me. It wasn’t until later that I realized that I could write. I’m a teacher and I used to have my students enter a writing contest. So one day, the kids were like, Mrs. Brown you should enter too!! I did and I won!!! But it wasn’t until I was on bedrest pregnant with my daughter, reading that I said, you know what? I can do this!
Ummm, what I love the most about writing I think is the creation of the characters, their personalities. How they act toward the other characters. And what frustrates me the most is writing the blurb! lol
2) Can you tell us a little about your book(s) and where our readers can find out more about them and you?
Sure! All my books can be found on Amazon and Kindle Unlimited. I’ll tell you about my billionaire series since that was the first series I put out. There are two books in the series right now and I’m working on book three. Basically, you have these three very successful men in the tech industry that have come from various backgrounds to build their companies from the ground up for the most part legitimately—one of them is a not so nice guy. But anyway, they set their sights on their women and they do what they need to do for the women to fall in love with them and be Alpha while doing it. Lol
3) What projects are you currently working on?
Currently, I’m working on four projects! I know, I know. It’s a lot! But I’m working on the last two books left for two of my series. I have a book coming in August that is in edits right now and the last project I’m working on is the Savage Bloodline Boxset that includes 20+ authors that is due out March 2022.
4) What has been your most significant achievement as a writer thus far? Where do you see yourself within your career in the next five years?
The most significant achievement is so far, well they’re two. So the first would be my book, A Billionaire’s Infatuation was voted Best Black Romance by Black Girls Who Write for 2020. The second was being a part of the anthology, Girls of Might and Magic, it is a number one new release in a few categories. That’s not happened to me!!
One of my goals is to become a USA Today Bestselling Author so hopefully I’ll reach that goal in five years, but I see myself still striving and working on perfecting my craft.
5) How have you dealt with rejection within your writing career?
To be honest I just keep going. I’ve had a company go bankrupt and give me rights back because I wasn’t one of the authors they chose to move forward with. I just kept writing. A Billionaire’s Infatuation was originally 10000 words. I wrote it for an anthology. They told me the story wasn’t what they were looking for. I just kept going, extended it and sent it to three companies. One wasn’t accepting new authors; the other two, liked the story.
6) Do you have a schedule for when you write? Do you outline your novels? How long does it generally take you to finish a novel?
I don’t have a schedule per se! I get it in where I fit it in! lol I typically write after 8:30 pm, that’s when everything at home is winding down, until around 10:30 pm. If I don’t’ have to work, I write a little later. In the summer, since I don’t work, I write all times of the day.
I don’t outline my novels. I literally just write. If I get stuck, that’s when I bring out paper and start with my ending—whether that’s end of chapter or book—and ask myself questions, like I know I want this to happen, how am I going to get there? It takes me around a month or two to finish a book, if that’s the only book I’m working on.
7) Do you believe that there is ever a point in life where it’s too late for an aspiring writer to become successful in this industry? Do you feel a late start would hinder their chances?
No, I don’t think there is a point in life where it’s too late for someone to do this. However, I do think that if you come into this industry thinking instant fame and money is what is going to happen, then I caution them. I definitely don’t think that a late start will hinder.
8) Are you an avid reader and have you always been? What’s the first book you ever read that really touched you emotionally and moved you? Who is your favorite author? What book are you currently reading?
I became an avid reader when I was in the eighth grade. R.L. Stine and his Fear Street books did it for me!! But the first book that ever touched me was a book I read in the tenth grade called Things Fall Apart, by Chenu Achaba (I think that’s how it’s spelled). I just cried during that book. But it also made you think what if.
Well, to be honest, I don’t have a favorite author, because I devour everything. I have things I read for leisure, I have stories I read so I’ll have something to talk to my students about, and then there’s the stuff I read for work. So I don’t have a favorite.
My current read is Warrior King by Milly Taiden.
9) The Pandemic was a challenging time for some writers and creative individuals but also for others it was time that they needed to focus on their creative passions. Which side of that spectrum do you fall on? Are there any lessons or nuggets of wisdom that you gained during the Pandemic that help you within your writing career? Did the quarantine stifle your creativity or did it make you even more driven to get things done?
Oh, I definitely fell on the side of focusing! With school being virtual, I had so much time to just get my ideas out and write. I wouldn’t have had that if school was five days a week, face-to-face.
I would say to the main thing was asking questions. There were things I wouldn’t have known had I not reached out to other authors and asked questions. I wouldn’t have known how to publish my own book through KDP. I wouldn’t have known how to even find an editor that wasn’t through my publishing company had I not built relationships with other authors. Quarantine if anything helped me get things done. I definitely wouldn’t have put out the many books I did, had it not been for the quarantine.
10) What are your thoughts about how the publishing industry as it is being represented today? Do you lean more towards traditional publishing or self-publishing as a preference? Does being a hybrid author interest you?
Ummm, thoughts about it, I definitely would like to see other black authors mainstreamed. The writing industry seems to focus on well-known authors who write for big publishing houses and to be honest, that’s just not an accurate representation of the industry. Most authors I read are self-published. So, I don’t know how to remedy that, just thought I’d mention it lol.
I got into traditional publishing because the money it takes to put a book out on your own, but now that I’m learning more about the inner workings. The behind-the-scenes stuff, I am leaning toward self-publishing. For right now, I’m a hybrid author. I’m not sure how long that’s going to last though.
11) I feel like writing is a remarkable tool to help people not only express themselves, but also to cope emotionally and mentally. I know for me I write to be and feel more authentic. What unique quality is there about you, about your art, that you feel represents your authenticity? How does writing help you to be more empowered in your purpose?
I love my state; where I live, so I try to put a piece of one or both in my books. If those are not present in my writing you can find a little piece of my personality in all of my female characters and a little bit of my husband’s personality in my male characters. I think that’s how I represent authenticity within my writing.