Q - What does your writing process look like?
A - Wine, laughter, and my dining room table.
Q- Do you have any strange writing habits (like standing on your head or writing in the shower)?
A- Not really. I ask my characters questions (aloud) and I like for my friends to read my manuscripts out loud to me.
Q- What book do you wish you could have written?
A- The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. But, Carson McCullers beat me to it.
Q- Just as your books inspire authors, what authors have inspired you to write?
A- I hope I've inspired someone. Toni Morrison, Harper Lee and Bernice McFadden. There are so many more authors I've been inspired by.
Q- If you could cast your characters in the Hollywood adaptation of your book, who would play your characters?
A- Whoa, I hope this is an exercise in manifestation. Cami would be played by YaYa DaCosta and Ali would be played by Jesse Williams from Grey's Anatomy. I actually used a picture of the Premier Soccer League player, Glenn Johnson when writing about Ali, but I don’t think he acts.
Q- How important are names to you in your books?
A- Very important. I choose names for my characters much like the way I chose names for my own children. The names are usually connected to other meanings, things I like and or family members.
Q- If you were granted one wish for something you could use in your day to day life, what would it be for?
A - Champagne. Good champagne! I’d like to drink a glass EVERY SINGLE DAY! I love the stuff.
Q- What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?
A- My firstborn. He's such a great person. I chose him, because he's closest to adulthood. The other two are still in the making.
Q- Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
A- Sittin' on the dock of a bay, writing something funny and provocative.
Q- Are you a plotter or a pantster?
A- I'm a pantster. I've toyed around with plotting and planning, but I tend to get overwhelmed by my ideas.
Simply put, a plotter is someone who plans out their novel before they write it. A pantser is someone who, “flies by the seat of their pants,” meaning they don’t plan out anything, or plan very little.
Q- What is your least favorite part of the publishing / writing process?
A- The entire technical/business part. I’m a storyteller who writes it down. I just want to share my stories in the hopes someone sees themselves in my character and realizes alternate outcomes for their own lives. I don’t want to deal with the marketing and taxes part.
Q- Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
A- Yes. In my tenth grade Honors English class at Dr. Philips High School.
Q- How did you come up with the title?
A- I didn’t. My sister did after reading the first draft of my manuscript. I was just calling it, Untitled, But At Least I Started.
Q- Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
A- Why the hell not you? Don’t take yourself out of the game before you’re even up to bat.
Q - Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
A - Oh my God, Yes! I’m obsessed with Ernessa T. Carter. I loved her book, 32 Candles. Check it out!
Q- Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
A- Yes. I want to ensure my characters have their own voices, cadences and styles of speech.
Q- Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
A- That’s an easy one, but I have two. My squad of girlfriends. Those chicks are the greatest! And my literary fairy godmother, Tara Mixon of Hellobook.co. She does it all and she is so super encouraging.
Q- When did you first, without hesitation, call yourself a writer?
A- I still haven’t. Tara’s going to roll her eyes.
Q- How do you work with an editor without the pride thing getting in the way?
A- Easily, when the editor gets you.
Q- What's your favorite love story? (movie or book)
A- Love Jones. Hands Down.
Q- This is a 2 parter:
If I wasn't afraid I would _________ (What?)
Someday, I want to _________ (What?)
A- Quit my job, to write. And
Write from my backyard on Lake Como.