One of my missions with this blog is to get
nosy up close an personal with many of today’s authors, old and new, famous and under the radar. My latest interview is with author LeichelleK. Leichelle has actually written several books, and being the 1-clickaholic that I am, I actually have one in my library (I am so pathetic) that I’ve never even read! So without further ado, meet LeichelleK!
Musings: Leichelle, thanks so much for taking the time to speak with me. The first question I ask of all IR romance authors is, why interracial romance?
LeichelleK: It was a happy accident that got me into being more serious about IR romance. I was looking for something to read. I’ve read mainstream romance writers and enjoyed many of their books, but none of them were reflective of my relationships and who I was dating. I “accidentally” read an IR romance that was less than 50 pages long. I was so disappointed, I called my mom and sisters and complained. I knew there had to be someone doing something much better than that. They suggested I do one of my stories. I had been writing for years but I only shared my stories with close friends and family. I had never considered publishing, of course the industry had changed greatly over the years. Interracial romance needs more diverse stories, we all don’t look alike, we all don’t love alike. I aim to help in the effort to remove interracial from the taboo territory and have it be accepted like any other romance.
Musings: Describe your writing process. Are you are a researcher, or do you write in a stream of consciousness where the thoughts come to you and you just go with it?
LK: I start out writing my story long hand, using pen and paper. I carry a notebook with me at all times. When in the car I have a voice recorder that will take down everything I say so I can work with it later. I’m not a strict outline maker with all my stories, but I might make a “map” just in case my characters take me in a different direction.
I am a bit of researcher and stream of consciousness writer, much will depend on the story. I ask a ton of questions and the library loves to see me come through the door. I carry a backpack because I’ll check a mountain of books. My notebooks are usually overflowing and I am able to add real authenticity to my story. I also read a lot, not just romance. I like science fiction, historical fiction, and suspense thrillers.
Musings: Are you a full-time writer? Does writing come naturally or were you motivated by another author or certain event?
LK: No, not a full-time writer, but at the rate I’ve been developing different stories that might change very soon. Many of my stories come naturally by what I might be observing or someone new I met. Just last week I was stuck in traffic so I popped in some jazz and just observed the frustrated drivers around me…by the time I got to my destination I had an outline for a new story and a few chapters written. Many times I might hear something funny/interesting/different and it gives me the premise for a new book. I try not to ear hustle too much but it’s hard when some of the stuff that comes out of people’s mouth make you want to fall off your chair or throw something across the room!
Musings: Do you read other IR authors or do you have a favorite author?
LK: Yes indeed! Huge Latrivia S. Nelson (Welsh), Sienna Mynx, Delaney Diamond, and S.K. Lessly fan. I am looking forward to reading works by (and this is by no means a complete list) Nana Malone, Shyla Colt, Lena Skye, and Tiana Laveen in the near future. There are some really great writers out there with some great stories.
Musings: What would you say distinguishes your writing, or rather trademarks a LeichelleK story from all the others?
LK: My heroine may not be the size 6 or 8, or even a 12 or 14 with long pretty hair or hazel eyes. I try to talk about the older woman and not someone just out of preschool. The physical characteristics with greatly vary and be very different from the expected petite woman that fits in the arms of the 6 foot + guy. We women are too multi-dynamic to be formulaic. I pay attention to the people I meet, hearing what they are not telling me and I build on those characteristics or personality traits that readers can relate to. Also I like the nontraditional or the unexpected. For example the black female stunt woman or the black female gamer or truck driver. They may not exactly be huge draws but there is a story there. I look forward to one of my colleagues writing about the black female billionaire that gets the guy!
I also “tell” my stories, as if we are over my house having tea and I’m sharing a couples’ journey toward love with you. Sometimes some readers don’t like that format, which I’m learning to accept but sometimes you have to deliver a story the way it comes to you.
Musings: Do you self-publish or are you affiliated with a publishing house?
LK: Currently I self-publish but if a publishing house wants to add me to their repertoire of authors I wouldn’t be opposed to joining.
Musings: What’s your take on the state of IR romance today? We (as if I write..) seem to be the bastard child of the romance genre, yet I see this as a flourishing moneymaker that everyone is dipping into now.
LK: It is definitely growing and the potential is exponential. I am happy that more women of color are gracing the covers and our characters are not just some hood girl being picked up by some rich non-black guy and all there is, is hot sex that might eventually develop into a relationship.
On the flip side, it seemed we are characterized as erotic and kinky and that’s it. As if IR sex only happens in the kitchen or on the ceiling or someplace crazy. Not that I am opposed to sex happening outside the bedroom, but some people think that is the only place it happens. I want a story that gets you angry, makes you happy, then makes you want to throw the book across the room and fuss at the characters and then take you back to happy again.
Maybe with more IR stories out there we can get rid of the stereotypes and misconceptions about IR romance.
Musings: If you could turn any of your books into a movie, which one would it be, and who would you cast?
LK: A tie right now between Finders Keepers [George Townsend- William Levy, Monique Brown- Robinne Lee] and Sudden Bloom [David Haydon- Simon Baker, Allain Krisson- Thandie Newton]. Of course I am horrible at this, I try to think of the black woman people would not “see” and develop a story around her.
Musings: What can we look forward to from LeichelleK this year?
LK: I’ll be doing more with my Satin Series. Another project came up and then I went back to school and got my Masters so that kept me away but I am excited to get back to these stories and bring back a few of my favorite characters.
Thank you so much LeichelleK! I love getting inside the creative mind and discovering how the words make it to the paper. LeichelleK’s books are available on Amazon and Kindle Unlimited. Check one or all of them out today!
Connect with LeichelleK:
“True love is like a stew, you just have to stir up sometimes and bring the good stuff to the top again.”
Camille Wilson had spent over 28 years being a devoted wife and mother. She had a house in an affluent neighborhood of D.C., three beautiful grown children and a husband with a successful job. One would believe she almost had it all. Now that she had an empty nest Camille wanted to get her marriage back on track. She is ready to turn down the lights, open the wine, and seduce her husband.
“True love doesn’t exist and anyone that says so is only after two things, sex and your bank account.”
Marshall Price believed that statement whole-heartedly and the cynical private detective is never wrong. In his experience romance was overrated and unnecessary. Infidelity is a given in his book and love is just a made up notion. When a new case comes his way to investigate the seemingly innocent Camille Wilson, Marshall discovers being wrong might just be the right thing for his heart.