Monday, December 20, 2010

Falling in LOVE with the Written word...

Hello all.  Did you miss me? Well I'm back after a brief hiatus. I know. I know. It's been over a month since I last blogged, and I know I should have been checking in to keep you all abreast as to what I have going on, but as you all know, life sometimes has this quirky way of getting in OUR way, but I digress.  Anywho, I'm currently working on my first Kismetlit manuscript, Perfect Proposition and I have to say it's getting really good.  I'm digging the characters, plot, storyline etcetera etcetera... (will have more on that in a couple of weeks) but now it's time to get to the nitty gritty. 

When I first launched Kismetlit, I told you all that I was going to do interviews with writers, and guess what? I'm super excited to say that I have found three willing participants, Jennifer CoissiereShon Bacon, and Tiffany Warren. These phenomenal authoresses whom I call my "sisterfriends" are experts in their craft, and God has truly blessed them with the true gift of storytelling. I had the pleasure of meeting Jennifer through my mentor and our mutual "sisterfriend" Shon Bacon. So kick back and relax as I introduce my first Sisterfriend, Jennifer Coissiere.

Jennifer's Story

KLC:   When did you fall in love with the written word?
JC:       I have loved books since before I could read. I can't remember not knowing how to read. I must have came out the womb loving the written word.

KLC:   How long have you been writing?
JC:       My earliest memory of writing (poetry and little stories) was at the age of 11. That would make it 22 years.

KLC:   When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
JC:        I don't think I ever said out loud I want to be a writer. I have always written poetry and I did that to escape my home life, which wasn't very good at all. The stories, maybe it's the characters, picked me to tell their journey.

KLC:   Who’s your favorite author & why?
JC:        I have so many and of course each is for a different reason. The one that resonates with me the most right now is James Baldwin. He wrote stories that were controversial and before it's time in history. My all-time favorite story by Baldwin is If Beale Street Could Talk, about a young man accused and imprisoned for a crime he did not commit. That happens everyday now.

KLC:   What advice do you have for aspiring writers?
JC:       Write the story how you want it to be if you were the reader. Stay true to your voice and vision.

KLC:   Are you an outliner or a fly by your pants kind of writer?
JC:      It depends on the story that I'm writing. I have used both techniques and I'm not sure which one works the best for me. 

KLC:   What are you currently working on?
JC:       Too many stories, if there is such a thing. Seriously, I have a total of 3 different stories that I am working on; one is the sequel for my debut novel.

KLC:   Where do you see your writing career in five years?
JC:       In five years, I hope to have found the writing technique that works best for me. I hope that I have become more disciplined in my writing schedules. I want to be able to release a book a year by then and if I am lucky possibly two books a year; one being a holiday themed book.

KLC:   Here's a tidbit of your work Crossing Over

    Raheem was watching the waitress as she walked his way. Her beauty mesmerized him, so much so she seemed to be gliding through the air. When he looked at her beautiful eyes, Raheem could not ignore the all too knowing look he’d seen in his sister’s eyes, the dull lifeless look of pain.
     “Where did everyone go? They left you to pay their bills?” she asked, handing him the check. Her comment dripped with sarcasm as she thought about the small tip she would certainly receive since everyone else took off.    
“I told them to go because I wanted to talk to you alone. I must have missed when you introduced yourself to us. What did you say your name was again?”
     “It’s Leigh.”
     “That’s a beautiful name for a beautiful person.”
     “I have a simple name, Leigh Lee. It’s as simple as it gets. Are you trying to ask me something other than my name?” She was flirting with him and he knew it. She was hoping maybe she could get him to double the amount of her tip, whatever it would be if she was extra nice to him, pretending she was interested in him.
     “Yes, I must admit I am. Was I being that obvious?”
     “It was either that or you was going to make a complaint to my manager. No one really cares what our names are until we do something wrong. I hope the service was to your liking, and the food was good. You know the wait staff gets blamed for the food if it sucks even though we didn’t prepare it.”
     “The food was wonderful as always, and you didn’t do anything wrong except being so beautiful. Can I have your number and invite you to church?”
     “Church?” she said with her face twisted as though she had something bitter in her mouth. “Uh, I don’t do nobody’s church.”
     Trying to quickly recover from her dismissal of his offer, Raheem added, “Ok, how about you pick a place? Anyplace you’ll feel comfortable in works for me.”
     “Well I’m off tomorrow. We can go to one of the clubs downtown.”
     Except that, he thought. Raheem sighed.
     He hadn’t been to a club since he was in his early twenties. He never understood what the big deal was about clubs. He preferred to go to some place where they could talk, without having to strain their ears or voices. Clubbing wasn’t something he liked doing, but it would have to do if he wanted to see her again.
     “How about we compromise? Tomorrow I will go to the club with you, but you have to promise me to come to church for our second date, maybe even a meal at my family’s house after. My father and twin sister are really great cooks.”
     “Who said there’d be a second date?” she asked teasingly.
     “I’m praying there is one. Remember I did invite you to attend church with me. That should tell you I’m a praying man.”
     “We’ll see.”
     “I’ll let you get back to work. I’ll call you tomorrow.”
     Leigh grabbed his arm before he had the chance to walk away.
     “Aren’t you forgetting something?”
     “Raheem,” he said all cocky, impressed that she had even bother to hint at him forgetting to tell her his name.
     “No, Raheem,” she said, hand extended with her palm facing up. “You forgot to pay me.”
     Laughing, he looked at the bill. After paying her, he said, “Sorry, I totally forgot. Keep the change and you’ll definitely hear from me tomorrow.”
     “Goodnight, Raheem.”

Crossing Over is Jennifer's debut novel and is available at, Barnes & Nobles, Books-A-Million, and 

Jennifer is what we call a Jane of all trades, and not only does she write, but she's a jewelry maker as well. You can purchase her jewelry by visiting her website. 
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