Gosh. That is a complicated question. But generally, a story starts with a scenario in my head. When I was a child, I watched a lot of television so I am very good at creating stories in my head. Sometimes, I just sit still and let it play out in my head like a movie. From beginning to end. I see all the characters and I know what they're doing and I hear how they respond. After a while, I put the outline on paper and then get to writing. It just flows after that. I let it flow until I finishing writing. When I write, I really immerse myself in the story and I really try to keep the ending in mind. It's not fancy but most of my pieces are born like that and people seem to enjoy them.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I have been reading for a long time so unfortunately, I don't remember the very first story that I read. But I remember reading. Always reading. Enid Blyton, Judy Blume, Roald Dahl, Power Ranger Pop-Up Books (Hahaha!) - my life was filled with literature and I think what that did was aid in my ability to create and imagine and write. Reading widened my vocabulary beyond the level of some of my older peers and also kept me imagining.
How do you approach cover design?
I am very literal in my approach. So, if I write a story about a mobster who falls in love with a nun, I will think classic pistol with a rosary and red lettering. I always think about what my story entails before I plan my cover. Again, I see it in my head before I put it down.The one thing that annoys me though is that the media never seems to want to match my vision. Of course, that is where a designer would come in but unfortunately, I am only just getting started and my budget is VERY limited. Until that day though, I imagine and I use Canva to kind of help me out with my designs.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
No!!! Don't make me pick five!!! Ha ha ha! Oh gosh! All books are my faves but the ones that I am most fond of are "The Purple Hibiscus" by Chimamanda Ngosi Adichie, "Things Fall Apart" by Chinua Achebe, "Never Far From Nowhere" by Andrea Levy (haven't read it in a while but still a really, really good book), I have not been able to complete it just yet because it's in my uncle's library and every time I go I try to read a bit more but "Roots" by Alex Haley and to round off the list, The Bible. I read that every day. To me, that's the top book on this list and it honestly keeps me sane in the madness that is the rest of the world.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read for pleasure period. Well, these days, I read for my blog. Tips on how to run a blog and how to make an income from a blog and so on and that has not been exactly pleasurable. But once a title calls to me, you can bet I'm going to read it. If it makes me laugh or I feel like it would expand my mind or even if it's a view opposite mine, I'll read it gladly.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
These days it's my laptop. But again, only because I'm reading for my blog and it's just convenient. It's kind of the only thing I read from though.
Describe your desk
It's not that long. It's foldable and it's made of flesh. Ha ha ha! I don't write at a desk. I sit cross-legged (or I lie down on my bed or I sit on the floor) and I write. To me, sitting at a desk feels like work and after three years of university education, I kinda dislike tables. I don't like feeling like I'm working when I write. I don't want to turn something that I enjoy into pure labour cause I'll never want to do it again and I can't imagine life without being able to create.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a place called Gasparillo. I don't want to say that I hated it but I definitely wasn't appreciative of the neighbourhood. We had a front yard to play and all that but the people that lived around us were not very nice and we never really played with the neighbour kids because of that. We kept to ourselves and were really quiet and we decided to be different. So that just meant that I got more time inside and I spent that time reading, playing and imagining. So I created a "somewhere else" so that I wouldn't have to be there among the people that I did not like. That made for some great stories too.
When did you first start writing?
The very first story I wrote was in school when I was about seven or eight. The prompt was "A pet has just died. Write about how you feel using adjectives of sadness." I remember the dog's name was Lovey, I remember that the dog had gotten knocked down and I remember how I said I picked the dog up, held it in my arms and cried. Ladies and gentlemen, at that point, I had never had a dog in my life. I don't even think I had gotten my first fish yet. but I described in detail the sorrow of losing an animal. And that is the exact point that I started writing (Thank you, television!)
What's the story behind your latest book?
This book or the idea for My Boss' Baby came up two years ago. It was born from just me being lost in my thoughts and creating this movie in my head. It was a fantasy actually. You hear all those stories about employer-employee relationships and how they get so far and I guess I was thinking about what I would do. But if I wrote a story on that, it would be one page because I am a professional and no matter how I feel about you (my boss), I can't cross that line. I just can't. I wouldn't say anything and I would just fawn over you and stuff. So, the story ended up being from a point of vulnerability and something a bit more realistic and "feeling."
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