Lisa Hodges is the quiet reserved First Lady of the fast growing Pilgrim Baptist Church. Those around her do not know that her quietness is a direct reflection of her of her discontent life. Charles, her husband, has his focus on climbing the ministerial ladder and the many women standing in line to fulfill his every need and desire–that he fails to acknowledge his wife’s growing frustration. Lisa, the mother of three, has gotten lost in the lives of her children and the role of being First Lady–and has long ago giving up obtaining any happiness of success of her own. The very sexy and talented Alex Mitchell arrives at her church, causing Lisa to feel her only happiness came in a brown eyed, caramel-skinned, muscled, and six foot frame. The two soon begin a sexy whirlwind affair that results in a forbidden shared love and unwanted pregnancy. On the other hand, with secrets of his own, Alex threatens to expose them all, one secret at time. Will Lisa be able to deny her love for Alex and fix the mess she’s gotten herself into? Or will her action bring down her husband, the church, and her family?
I am inspired by anything–literally. I just love to write, and more than that, I love to “show” stories on paper. I started writing very early, and fell in love with writing when I was in the 5th grade when I wrote my first play, “What If Christmas Never Came?” I was so proud of that script that I wrote on notebook paper and bound between sheets of red and green construction paper. Lol I knew then what I wanted to do in life and that same excitement even to this day fuels my inspiration to do what I love.
I actually never set out to write books. My thing was stageplays. In 2004, I was very hurt by a promoter in Hollywood, CA who stole my show and took it on tour. I swore I would never do another play again, but the passion for telling (showing) stories wouldn’t go away. So, I decided after reading Kimberla Lawson Roby’s book, Casting the First Stone, that I would try my hand at showing my stories another way. Her book was the beginning of my obsession with novels of that type. I have been hooked ever since. I wrote my first book, “Up High, Down Low, Too Slow” in 2004, and failed at it miserably. Had no clue what I was doing. I self-published it and only sold it to family and friends. But, had I given up, I would not be an Essence/National bestselling author of two books, Diary of a Mad First Lady & The Preacher’s Wifey.
3) Where did your ideas come from for your books?
The first novella I just mentioned came from watching a segment on Oprah. Author J.L. King was on there discussing the down low brothers. I remember feeling a gamut of emotions that day and the only way I knew to express it was to write about it. That’s how that book was born. The other two are loosely based on my life. I always tell people that I changed the names to protect the guilty.
4) How does it feel having readers look into your life through your books?
At first it was uncomfortable because I didn’t know how people would respond. I was skeptical to tell people it was based on my life because at the time of Diary’s release, I was still a Pastor’s wife and the main character in Diary is a Pastor’s wife. I knew people would immediately think the character was about me anyway.Turns out people were intrigued and appreciated my level of transparency even through the portal of fiction.
5) What would be your one piece of advice for every aspiring author?
Never compare yourself to another writer/author. Tell the story YOU want to tell. Yes, there are formulas to writing that take skill to execute, but every writer should have their own uniqueness that makes them stand out. And, keep writing. Don’t stop writing. Write even if you don’t know who your audience is yet. Bottom line…write!
6) What’s next for you?
More books, more plays, and more films. Anything that allows me to express my creativity, I’m doing it!
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