Today my featured author is Ashantay Keys Titus. Please welcome her to the blog.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I’m 41 years old and reside in California. I have a 19-year-old college student. I’m married, been at my job for 17 years, love pink, the Investigation Discovery channel and I love taking pictures.
What do you do when you are not writing?
When I’m not writing, which is hardly ever, I’m usually hanging with my family or reading.
Do you have a day job as well?
Yes, I do.
When did you first start writing and when did you finish your first book?
I first started writing in 2005 but my first book wasn’t finished until March of 2016.
How did you choose the genre you write in?
I chose Urban Fiction since that’s what I grew up reading in my late teens to early 20’s.
Where do you get your ideas?
My ideas come from life, TV, things I’ve seen and heard.
Do you ever experience writer’s block?
Oh yes, I do!
Do you work with an outline, or just write?
Both but I don’t usually outline until my story is almost finished.
Is there any author or book that influenced you in any way either growing up or as an adult?
Well I’m a huge fan of Deidra DS Green and two of her series has influenced me tremendously.
Can you tell us about your challenges in getting your first book published?
Fortunately, I didn’t have any. My friend published my book.
If you had to go back and do it all over, is there any aspect of your novel or getting it published that you would change?
Yes, one of them being the cover.
How do you market your work? What avenues have you found to work best for your genre?
I use social media sites, along with sponsoring ads which work well.
Have you written a book you love that you have not been able to get published?
No. All mine have been published.
Can you tell us about your upcoming book?
My upcoming book is about a preteen and something like peer pressure.
What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?
Most of my books are based on real life experiences which is why I refer to myself as a true fiction author. I have favorite parts in each story. In Eboni With the White Skin I loved writing the restaurant scene. In Stalking Alexis 2 I loved writing chapter 17 (17 or 18 :))… it’s so many but those are the ones that I can remember right now.
How did you come up with the title?
My titles just come to me.
What project are you working on now?
I’m working on Hating the Skin I’m In.
Will you have a new book coming out soon?
I’m hoping it will be this Fall.
Are there certain characters you would like to go back to, or is there a theme or idea you’d love to work with?
No. I love creating new characters.
What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? What has been the best compliment?
Toughest has been to write about “fiction” and not too much truth. Best compliment; everything I write is fire! 🙂
Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers?
Build a fan base, stay out of drama, ignore the charts and be true to yourself.
Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans?
Thank you for giving me a chance and supporting me!