Tuesday, October 2, 2012
AOTR INTERVIEWS AUTHOR VANNA B.
AOTR: Please give the readers a brief Bio on you the person and tell us about yourself.
Vanna B.:I was born and raised in Philly. I've always loved to write and knew I would end up authoring books one day. I received my BA in journalism from Temple University and afterwards wrote for various newspapers, magazines, blogs and other sites. After I had my son, I decided to be a stay-at-home-mom and realized there would be no better time to finally start writing books. I wrote Fancy and am happy to be finally doing what I love, writing about the things I want to write about.
AOTR: What pushed you to write your book?
Vanna B.: Well, I wanted to create a story and characters that readers could relate to and figured since we all know people who create false personas for themselves and pretend to be more than what they are, that would serve as a good premise for the book. So I cooked up the main character Fancy, who is a beautiful woman that portrays herself to the world as being wealthy, popular and happy although in actuality she is really poor, lonely and miserable. She hides behind a glamorous facade, preventing anyone from seeing the real her.
AOTR: How did you come up with the characters in your book? Were the characters and writing the story easy for you, or did you have to outline and do research?
Vanna B: It was fairly easy because I drew different characteristics from actual people that I know. I also drew elements from different places I've seen and things I've experienced to help lend a sense of authenticity to the story. And working with a rough outline helped keep me on track with where the story was going.
AOTR: How long did it take you to complete your book? Will there be a sequel. If so when do you plan to release it?
Vanna B.: It took me about a year to write Fancy. There will be a sequel and it will be released in January.
AOTR: After reading your book, what do you hope the reader will take away?
Vanna B: The message I hope readers take from Fancy is to love themselves; that they are beautiful as they are and don't need to change to conform to anyone else's standard. All that glitters isn't gold and although the grass may seem greener on the other side, it seldom is. Those that can’t accept you for who you are, most likely do not deserve to be in your life anyway.
AOTR: If you could write a book together with any author, dead or alive, who would it be?
Vanna B: Stephen King. I think the two of us would write a great story together. I could bring an urban flair to his suspenseful style. And I've always admired his drive and the story of how he got to where he is today.
AOTR: If your book was made into a movie, what actors would you choose for the characters? Why?
Vanna B.: Fancy - Jessica Alba. She has the right combination of innocence and sass to play Fancy in the various stages of her life. Aaron - Wood Harris. He can pull off the charm of Fancy’s sexy chocolate lover Aaron as well as his wickedness. Shawn - Felicia “Snoop” Pearson. We’ve seen her play a similar role on the Wire so I know she’d be perfect for it. Jaslyn - Gabrielle Union. Jaslyn is an uppity, model-type who can be quite catty. I believe Gabrielle could play her well. Bittany - Jenna Von Oy. She’s the white girl with attitude from the Parkers. She’d be perfect to play Brittany, the snow bunny from the hood. Anna - Rosie Perez. Fancy’s mother Anna is loud, brassy and always speaks her mind. Even in her 40s she still behaves as she did at 20. Bella - Michelle Rodriguez. She plays the bad girl role well. She’d make a very convincing Bella, the leader of the Latin Queens gang. Trinity - Devin Aoki (from Fast and Furious 3.) She has the right look and the skills to play Fancy’s wayward Cambodian stripper friend.
AOTR: Besides writing, what are some of your other talents and hobbies?
Vanna B.: I modeled and did hip-hop music for years but eventually I outgrew the modeling and recently I decided to stop making music so that I could put my all into my first love of writing. Some of my hobbies are dancing, watching movies, playing Scrabble and trying out new recipes.
AOTR: What words of wisdom do you have for aspiring authors?
Vanna B.: Write every day, whether it’s a whole chapter or just a few paragraphs. Also, learn all you can about the publishing industry and about marketing. Writing the book is the easiest part of the process; the real work comes in when it's time to market and sell it.
AOTR: What current projects are you working on? Will you be attending any events, book fairs or have any book signings?
Vanna B.: I’m currently working on Fancy 2, which will be released in Jan. The signings I have coming up are Sept. 28th and 29th at N Beauty, Oct. 5th at Studio 98 and Oct. 20th at Mezzanine (all in Philadelphia.)
AOTR: Where can readers find more information on you and your work?
Vanna B. For more info. visit my website
www.VannaBOnline.com/books and my Amazon page
I am also on the following social netowrking sites:
Vanna's ten favorite things:
Shoes: a pair of black velvet strappy wedges I got on clearance for $20. They are so comfortable!
Poet: Maya Angelou
Day of the week: Saturday
Friend/why? My husband. He's been my best friend for the 11 years we've been together and has always supported me in all my endeavors.
Radio station: Power 99 in Philly
Play: Letting Go Can Be So Hard