1) What is the working title of your current/next book?
NOT WITHOUT PASSION is the current title of my next novel.
2) Where did the idea come from?
The idea for the novel’s title sprang from my love of Langston Hughes. One of his works is NOT WITHOUT LAUGHTER. The whole notion of living one’s live without laughter is ludicrous to me. And to think Langston could have done such a thing is equally as ludicrous, considering Hughes was a master humorous. It surfaced in his poetry, short stories, novels and autobiographies. In his Jessie B. Simple stories, Langston used humor as a choice of weapons to fight the societal ills of racism and prejudice.
Likewise, I decided I couldn’t live my life without passion. Perennially, I want to be on fire, inspired, impassioned and throbbing with love for people in my life, and I want to forever give my all for the everyday activities and chores I set my mind and heart to in the 24 precious hours of my day. In several of our countless conversations in the past, my friend Gina used to say, “From now on, I want passion in my relationships.” Her face and voice would change whenever our conversation shifted to the subject, and I knew she was serious, knew she meant business. Fomenting on these two influences, I decided an apt title for this new novel had to deal with passion. I knew my characters had to be burnished in the fire of conflict to rise from the ashes with a renewed passion palpitating in their hearts.
3) What genre does your book fall under?
My novel is a contemporary romance tinged with the paranormal.
4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
Meagan Good would portray Moon Renfro, the mixed-race Navajo and African-American protagonist in NOT WITHOUT PASSION. Good’s sassy, leading lady allure sets her apart from other Hollywood stars, making her a perfect fit for the role. Jada Pinkett Smith would be Moon’s love interest, Leo Gonzalez. And the supporting roles of Sydeeka and Jewel, Moon’s straight and lesbian girlfriends, will be portrayed by Regina King and Sanaa Lathan. I would intentionally cast LGBQT actresses and actors, known and unknown, for as many leading and support roles as possible.
5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
When Moon Renfro hurls caution to the wind and walks out on a tenuous limb, will she have what it takes to survive, to not retrace her steps back to a life she can no longer abide?
6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
From where I sit this evening, my novel will be independently published, even as I thank the Universe for the representation of a literary agent and a major publishing house. Anything is possible!
7) How long did it take you to write the first draft?
I am over half way through the writing of the first draft of this manuscript. A queue of things halted my writing in 2012, and to thicken the plot, I purchased this laptop on which I am currently writing just to discover its lines jump, leap and wiggle anywhere they want to go. Yet I remain recommitted. Nothing is stopping me. I love the flow of this story, the characters, its humor, its language, its sexy fire and so many other delights, including other writers coming together to inspire me and themselves….to return to our fiction and finish the story in 2013.
A more apropos answer for me, for this question, is: I will finish the first draft of NOT WITHOUT PASSION within the next three months, before the end of April’s showers.
8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
My story is incomparable, an original in the truest sense of the word. It’s a star on its own horizon. The intensity of its glow awaits you! In time, other novels will be compared to it.
9) Who or what inspired you to write this book?
I began writing this book from three premises: What if a woman walked away from a successful career to embrace her staged rebirth into a life strikingly different from anything she’s ever known? What if a lesbian were the parent of an all-gay family of grown children? What if a lover follows Moon through several lifetimes and requires her love to complete a supernatural mission?
10) What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?
The book’s pivotal lovers, Moon and Leo, are the parents of quadruplets, who experience their own trials, tribulations and triumphs; Moon’s mother Sephira is a Navajo from an Arizona reservation; and Moon’s African lover is a sexy shape shifter…or is it only a figment of Sephira’s over-active imagination.
Look for NOT WITHOUT PASSION on Kindle and Amazon in 2013.