Is there any books you really don’t enjoy?
I’ve read books that I wouldn’t even donate because they were so bad, but I would never disparage an author publically. I just don’t see the point in that. If I really had a problem with something I read, I would email the author if I felt my opinion was constructive enough to be useful.
What do you hope your obituary will day about you?
I hope that it will say that I loved with all my heart and did what I could to make this world a better place.
Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live?
I grew up in the Columbia Heights neighborhood of Washington, DC in the 1980s, which is to say at the height of the crack trade in poor neighborhoods like mine. But despite all this, I never felt unsafe in my neighborhood. My parents, who immigrated to this country from Trinidad and Grenada, bought a house in Columbia Heights at a time when everyone who could was moving out. But I loved living in the city. I had a tight group of friends that were pre-approved by a group of like-minded parents (We all HAD to get along because we weren’t allowed to play with any other children). We walked everywhere together and played indoors for hours. If something unsafe was going on outside, my parents kept us from it and, for the most part, I was clueless. None of the drug dealers ever offered us drugs or bothered us because my Dad was crazy (in a good way) and they knew it. Because of that safe space that my parents created, I was able to focus on all of the potential and beauty in my neighborhood – loving families, hope and struggle, diversity of every race, nationality, ethnicity, religion and income. That experience shaped how I see the world.
What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing?
For me, the hardest part of the journey is the marketing. It is the part that requires me to truly step out of my comfort zone and say “LOOK AT THIS THING I MADE! DO YOU LIKE IT?” When I am writing, I don’t think about anything else. So even when self-doubt hits, I’m not doing battle with anyone but myself. Marketing is where things get VERY risky for me.
What marketing works for you?
I honestly have no idea what “works”, but I can tell you that I enjoy meeting and talking with people, so going to sci-fi conventions is something I really love to do. Besides the fact that sci-fi conventions are the only places I’ve ever been where weirdness is celebrated with unrestrained fervor (which is AWESOME), I just love connecting with people face-to-face. It’s the only opportunity I have to really meet the people who read my books.
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Genre – Science Fiction
Rating – NC-17
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