Wednesday, April 16, 2008

DEBUT AUTHOR: Niambi Brown Davis

EDITOR NOTE: It’s always a pleasure to introduce you to a member of SORMAG’s Community who has achieved their publishing dream. For me it’s an inspiration to see someone who has stumbled down the publishing road and never give up on her dream of publication. Niambi is a loyal supporter of SORMAG and has attended the online conference soaking up the information on writing. She didn’t tell me she had a book coming out, I was pleasantly surprised when I received an advance copy of it. For you writers out there who believe the publishing road never ends, don’t you turn back. Dreams do come true, you too can see your name on a book. Please meet, Niambi Brown Davis debut author.

Please give readers a brief bio on you the person and the writer.

I was born in Philadelphia but raised on the Eastern Shore of Maryland where I now reside. My family and I lived for many years in Washington, DC and for a time in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. I’ve been an avid reader since first grade (we didn’t have kindergarten back in the olden days) when I realized those 26 letters could be turned into words. I came to writing much later in life, right after I bought a computer and stumbled into the wonderful world of African American literature. RAWSISTAZ was the first group I joined. When I learned that an online class would be taught by writers whose work I enjoyed, I signed up, and the rest is history!

Tell us about your current book.

From Dusk to Dawn is a story of two people who are opposites in every way. Their initial clashes give way to a love that is deeper than either of them imagined. That love is put to the test many times, but when they’re faced with the greatest challenge to their union, each of them must decide how far they’re willing to go or how much they’re willing to sacrifice in the name of love.

What would you like your readers to take away from your book?

It’s easy to judge a person by their name, their religion, where they’re from or the job they do. But we miss out when we put up barriers based on surface judgments. Somewhere I read that there are only two emotions – love and fear. They cannot exist in the same place, and there is no good outcome to a decision based upon fear. And just like the truth, real love can’t hide forever.

Are you’re a morning writer or a night writer?

I’m a morning person, but I’m an anytime writer. Most of From Dusk to Dawn was written at the crack of dawn when the house was quiet and I was the only person awake. I’d get up at 5:00 and get in at least two hours before my other life called. However, I can write at any time, especially when an idea just won’t leave me alone. I’ve been known to wake up in the middle of the night bursting with just the right description or dialogue and grabbing a piece of paper to write it down.

What aspects of writing do you love the best and which do you hate the most?

There’s a place in writing when I hit that “ah-ha” space. I’m not struggling to make sense and the words flow without effort, especially when I’m writing in long-hand. Second to that is research. It’s so easy to get caught up, to click from link to link, or read past the point in a book where I should stop. I sometimes lose myself in the research instead of the writing.

Simply said, I hate it when I’ve hit my stride but have to stop in mid-stream.

What’s something you wish you’d know earlier that might have saved you some time/frustration in the publishing business?

For me, it was not something I wish I’d known; rather it was my own reaction to certain things that are simply out of an author’s hands. I’ve attended a few conferences where I listened to authors describe their journey to publishing; I’ve even talked to friends who are published authors. Intellectually, I was prepared, but when my book appeared on Amazon before I knew it would happen, I was genuinely shocked. Now, logic and emotion are a little more aligned.

What’s the most interesting change in your life as a result of being a published author?

There haven’t been many changes yet, except that I’ve become more organized, a trait that I’ve been working on diligently since the first of the year. I’m finding that there aren’t enough hours in the day. There is so much to be done in the promotion of a book that if I’m not careful, anything not related to From Dusk to Dawn will fall through the cracks and by the wayside.

What’s the one thing about writing do you wish other non-writers would understand?

It’s not as easy as it looks; there’s no magic map with a straight line from “go” until “the end.”

Name your top five favorite writing books.

In the beginning I purchased a few, but reading about writing didn’t work for me. My brain learns best through hands-on. I jump in, swim, and then figure it out.

What do you do to make time for yourself?

I love libraries, museums and eating out. I’m also deeply involved in researching and documenting the history of both sides of my family, which is as relaxing as it is hard work. Recently, I’ve discovered the world of scrapbooking, which could become an obsession if I let it. And in the summer and fall, I enjoy sailing.

This month our theme is Men in Fiction. Which male authors do you read?

I’ve enjoyed books by Brandon Massey, Gary Hardwick, and James McBride as well as Robert Greer and his wonderful series featuring C.J. Floyd, an African American bail bondsman/bounty hunter.

How can readers get in contact with you?

Please visit my website at, and email me at

Read my blog at and visit me at

Thanks for inviting me to SORMAG. It too was one of the places that inspired and encouraged me to write.

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