Tracy A. Ball
Genre: Interracial Romance
What made you start writing? Besides being born this way, plotholes drive me nuts. Seriously, I’ve always known I wanted to be a writer. I believe storytellers are the most magical people in the world.
Why is black representation in fiction important to you? I didn’t have it when I was younger. More than keeping people from seeing me, lack of representation made it difficult for me to see—and understand—myself.
Advice you would give other blacks, children interested in becoming authors? 1) The current one-dimensional worldview is used up, dated, and largely wrong. That is why we live in a culture of remakes and reruns. (They want to capture/recapture something real that continually evades them.) The Black experience is a shared worldview unique to us. It is born of suffering and made of impossibilities. It crosses divides and breaks chains. Our story is THE story. It is coming of age and overcoming. It is horror, mystery, and often Sifi. Our story is full of fantasy and way too much realism. Just living is a harrowing adventure and a monumental sacrifice. We are every genre and category. We are the love that conquers all. Our story is the tale that everyone is trying to tell in one format or another. Because our story is the truth. Every black person is an untold version of that truth. 2) In your mind, in your heart, or on your tongue, words are the key to the universe. You can see it, you can feel it, but you can’t share the experience without communication. Movies, songs, speeches, politics, careers, marriages, dreams, goals, plans… Nothing happens until someone finds the words. And, you, future Black Author are the goose that lays the golden egg. You hold the key because you own the words. It is your story to tell. 3) Do not write for approval unless you want to give your authority away. Do not write because you want to (everybody wants something). Write because you have to. Write because your soul won’t let you rest until you do. Do not compare yourself to other writers. They’re not writing what you’re writing. Don’t stop at telling us a story. Show us a life. Always, do your thang.
Genre: Contemporary/NA Romance
What made you start writing? Time was a huge factor in writing my first novel, but the support and encouragement from family gave me the extra push to publish.
Why is black representation in fiction important to you? To show that there are strong, successful creators, explorers, professionals, and so much more in the black community too.
Advice you would give other blacks children interested in becoming authors? Write the story that you want to read, one that you love.
I began writing when my father was dying. I needed something to make me feel like I accomplished something he and I wanted to do. So I wrote a book and kept writing and now I have ten books. I write romance that is spicy. Seeing a strong black woman that has the same flaws and circumstances and she is making it and doing well is motivation. Just write a little everyday even if you think it’s bad. The more you write the better you get! I look at my first book and it’s amazing how much I have changed. How much my writing has changed. It’s a beautiful process so write everyday.