Hello Dorothy welcome to Books2Mention Magazine. We are grateful for this opportunity to gain more knowledge about you and your writings.
You entered the literary scene in 1996 and since then you have authored two novels and a book of poetry. In addition to being an author you decided to form Xpressit Publications.
B2M: How challenging is it to promote your books?
DOROTHY: My challenge doesn't lie in promoting my book. I have been able to successfully market my book very well on my own. The challenge is in landing an agent who will take a serious look at my work and recognize what I have passionately proven.my writing style is appealing to a lot of readers.
B2M: What if anything would you like to personally change about the industry?
DOROTHY: The way authors with great talent are overlooked. There is a lot of talent out here but with the way you have to prove yourself it is a daily grind just making the numbers stand out. My personal opinion, there are a good number of best-sellers not picked up because everyone is not doing the author a good service by turning in the numbers.
B2M: Being that you are a novelist and a poet which hat is the easiest for you?
DOROTHY: I love both hats. However, poetry is my first love. My born conception into a novelist is accredited to the passion behind writing my emotions down and just allowing that flow to pour from my heart and giving space to the rhythm tapping in my spirit. Poetry for me is like the calm in the midst of a storm. You hold on because you know eventually that cloud is going to pass over.
B2M: You have stated that you are a huge fan of Maya Angelou. What poem by her is your favorite or offers you the most inspiration?
DOROTHY: I have three; Phenomenal Woman; Just Give Me a Cool Glass of Water Before I Die, and Still I Rise. These poems speak so true to my womanhood and having a cool glass of water before you die is just a deep expression. Maya can put a prose together just like that and have you sitting somewhere picking that thing apart. I love to challenge my thinking and I enjoy her "witty expressions."
B2M: Would you say that you make a strong conscious effort to provoke powerful messages in your novels?
DOROTHY: I definitely would say that I do. I write about the issues that many of us face on a regular and the things I know people want to comment on but are not so willing to openly speak about. I have read a lot of books and when I decided to write my own novel, I worked on that still voice inside of me that has been screaming to say things I know people would say if they could. My first novel, Married Man, was my first opportunity to breach the subject of cheating and messing with a married man. Most people are offensive to the subject, but why? It is a reality that men/women in marriages step outside their marriages and cheat for many numerous reasons. So, I addressed the issue.
B2M: If given the opportunity to work with two legendary writers of your choice who would they be and why?
DOROTHY: I would choose without a doubt, Maya Angelou and Iyanla Vanzant. I want the opportunity to let Maya Angelou know that I was inspired to write down my thoughts through poetry after reading her novel, "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings." I connected so much with that book, especially with her character. I had low self-esteem issues as a child because I was abused at an early age by a girlfriend of my father during a visit with him. It had a strong affect on me as I grew up. It was always hard for me to socialize and express myself with others because I worried about their feelings before mine. I tell you I understood that Caged Bird theory very well.
And then I read the book by Iyanla Vanzant, Yesterday I Cried, and that changed me at a point in my life when those self-esteem issues were just so out of control. After reading Iyanla's life story, I realized I was an over-comer and I had more than enough reasons to share my story with someone. Not so much in the same manner that these two women have but in my own unique way.
B2M: What can readers expect from you next?
DOROTHY: I'm currently completing a book for the young adults readers right now. This book was solely inspired by my experience with my nieces who I've spent a lot of time with and two I have helped take care of. A good number of our young women are hurting. There are some issues pertaining to our young girls, in particular, that deeply concern me. I am compelled to share with them the value of self-preserved love and how important it is to value your self-worth.
B2M: Do you feel that writing is therapeutic for the soul?
DOROTHY: Writing has been my therapy and it is my soul's best medicine. I always feel better after I have written a couple of chapters in my novels. I feel so empowered when I finish a novel although it drains me during the process. I sleep well after I write.
B2M: Where do you go to create a tranquil environment that allows you to tap into your creative skills?
DOROTHY: I go to the beach during the summers and in the winter I write while I'm traveling, in my hotel room or at home in my bedroom, late at night. I usually play soft music in the background to settle my thoughts.
B2M: Out of the two novels that you have written, do you have a favorite character that you've created? If so, please tell us which character and why?
DOROTHY: My main character, Roxane, from my second novel, A Woman Scorn'd is most meaningful to me. This was a very hard novel for me to complete. I wrote from my past experience pouring onto the pages those emotions I had harbored inside of me that I thought were gone. It came from me from my age of abuse.a five-year-old child's perspective, although I was writing about a young thirteen-year-old girl being raped by her father at the opening of my novel. That was how my feelings resurfaced. I was abused by a grown woman, but it felt like rape in a sense every time she did those awful things to me. To show it from young Roxane's eyes was my way of showing what it is like when someone abuses you, they are raping you. They strip from you pure innocence.
B2M: When penning a novel are there things that you discover about yourself during the writing process?
DOROTHY: For me, I learned what I had never talked about but also what was trapped inside. When I write, I am in tune with myself and all that I have experienced or observed.
B2M: Do you believe that creative writing is a gift or is it learned?
DOROTHY: I truly believe writing is a gift given for a divine purpose. How we use this gift is so important. I heard a legacy writer say this in a documentary while I was in college studying Women Studies. Let's just say I have never forgotten her statement. The author's name is Nawal El Sadaawi and the title of her book is, "Woman At Point Zero." She said this, "you are not a true writer until you have suffered, then you have something meaningful to write about."
I know for myself at this point in my life what that actually means. Losing my sister-in-law to domestic violence in the brutal manner that she was murdered took something out of me and it also poured something into me. I was nearing the completion stage of writing my novel, A Woman Scorn'd, the very same month I got the call from her twin sister. December 31, 2004 was a downfall period for me. I couldn't believe I had just written a novel about domestic violence and someone I loved like my own sister had just lost their life behind domestic abuse. That day Nawal El Sadaawi's word really hit home for me. In two weeks I was scheduled to send my novel off to print and I couldn't release it because it was not finished. I couldn't touch my manuscript for a period of 30 days. I couldn't speak because all I could do was cry. It was not until the month of February 2005 when I drew the strength to revisit the manuscript. A month after the funeral, I sat down and cried the whole time I was writing. I knew then that I had to write so that my book would preserve her memory and hopefully help someone else make it to see another day.
B2M: What motivates you to write realistic stories?
DOROTHY: I am motivated to write realistic stories because people can relate to the truth.
B2M: How has the art of writing changed your life?
DOROTHY: I see writing the same way I see a painting. There is something about a painting that makes me study it until I can understand why the painter created the vision. I write from the vision in my mind hoping to paint the picture so clear the reader walks away with a clear and concise understanding. My life is changed by the impact my writing has on others.
B2M: How do you plan to use your creativity to make your mark in the literary world?
DOROTHY: I want to be remembered as someone who aimed to make a difference socially and for the betterment of others.
Dorothy we encourage you to continue writing realistic stories that enlighten readers. We look forward to reading more of your books.
Thanks for interviewing with Books2Mention Magazine. Pease be sure to come back again and keep readers informed about all of your future endeavors.
Much Success To You!
The Staff @ Books2Mention Magazine
You are welcome to visit the website of Dorothy Goins at www.DorothyGoins.com.
Books by Dorothy Goins include:
A Woman Scorn'd