TRACY BROWN is the Essence bestselling author of Snapped, Twisted, White Lines, Criminal Minded, Black and Dime Piece. She lives in Staten Island, New York.
Author’s Website: www.tracy-brown.com
1. What do you like to do in your free time?
I enjoy watching reality television and spending time with my children. Getting together with my girlfriends once a month for drinks and conversation is a must for me.
2. What kind of music do you like to listen to? Why?
I like old school hip hop and R&B. I don’t like much of the stuff that is on the radio now. I enjoyed the music of my parents’ generation most because the lyrics were poetic, the melodies were intoxicating and hearing those songs bring me back to a point in time when things were much simpler. I like the old school hip hop artists – Doug E. Fresh and Slick Rick, Rakim, LL, Public Enemy, Biggie Smalls, and Tupac – because their music told a story, had a message and a positive aspect to it that allowed those of us listening to dream. Nowadays “Touch It or Not” and “Shake Your Moneymaker” don’t quite do it for me. I do enjoy Common, Mos Def, Talib Kweli and even Kanye West a great deal. I like grown folks’ music now. The other stuff is for my teenaged kids. Mary J. Blige is my absolute all time favorite.
3. What’s your all time favorite movie? Why?
That’s a tie. Glory because I think Denzel’s scene where that one tear fell down his cheek as they were whipping him is LEGENDARY! I love that movie. My second favorite is Forrest Gump. I cry every time I see it, no matter what. His love for Jenny and his friendship with Bubba just warms my heart. I love a movie that can make me cry and I’m a sucker for a tear jerker.
4. What’s your all time favorite novel and/or writer? Why?
My favorite all time novel(s) would be Roots by Alex Haley (a classic) and Tumbling by Diane McKinney Whetstone. I actually like everything she has ever written and that’s because reading her books is like an adventure. You are immediately transported from your current location to the setting of that novel. You are suddenly living in a row house in Philadelphia and you know those characters, you know that emotion she describes. She is an awesome storyteller.
5. What do you like best about being a writer?
I like the feedback I get from readers. Whether it’s an email, a note sent to my PO Box, or a one-on-one conversation I have at a book signing, the reaction of the readers to a character I created is awesome. I love hearing that someone identified with one of my character’s pain, triumph, sorrow or loss. I love hearing that someone took a look at their own life and made changes for the better as a result of reading one of my stories. Most of all, it feels immeasurably gratifying to know that I have touched someone enough that they took the time out of their own lives to send me a message or to come and see me at a bookstore so that they can meet me, give me a hug or just say ‘thank you’ for a story I wrote. There is no greater reward than knowing that the words of my heart touched someone’s life. Being a writer is a dream come true for me.