Saturday, December 26, 2015

Twinja Book Reviews 3rd Annual Diversity Month Day Twenty-One : Interview with @LAH_Author + month long #giveaway

Happy Holidays all you awesome folk!

We took a few days off, because, who would really hop on our blog to read an interview during the holidays XD

But now that we're entering the last few days of our month long event of interviews, we're delighted to introduce who's next up!
This author we've known through the grapevine through former Twinja Book Reviews guest Thelonious Legend

She's written for YA and Adult audience, Romance and Spec Fic! So if you're looking for a author to obsess over,  here's a new one to add to the list!

Twinja Book Reviews Annual Diversity Event Day Twenty-One:

Author LA Hendricks

Thank you for stopping by the blog! Why don't you introduce yourself to readers!

Hiya! I'm LA, author, blogger, and IT Project Manager. I write short stories, novels, TV and Movie scripts. I'm also a voracious reader - I love fantasy, sci-fi, paranormal, romance - really anything with a good story and evocative characters.

What can you tell us about your journey becoming an author?

I have found the most important thing is to be open to whatever comes your way! I started out with short stories. Then, I got a chance to write an online serial. Editing jobs and even an opportunity to do an online radio show came my way. And each one of those individual things prepared me for the books that I am writing now, and built connections that helped grow my career as a writer, editor, and ghostwriter.

I write the stories I want to read. I have always been a lover of books, but I was tired of the search for speculative fiction featuring diverse characters. It was inevitable that spec fic would be my first adventure in writing/publishing. I followed that up with a romance novel, and both are available on most ebook retail sites.

We see you blog too! What created the initiative behind your blog?

I focused my blog on diverse speculative fiction because it's my first love and I don't think it get's nearly enough love. Especially for indie, small press, and self-published authors.

What can you tell us about your experience growing up?

I grew up in NJ and VA. In NJ, we lived in an all black neighborhood and I attended an all black private (catholic) school. The kids all came from a similar background as I did, so I just assumed everyone grew up that way. Then we moved to VA and boy was that a culture shock. We lived in a very integrated neighborhood and the school had kids from ethnic backgrounds I hadn't even heard of! And it was also in VA that I learned about colorism in the black community and the stigma of being smart while black (and female). I was lucky - a really good student, but also on the basketball and tennis teams - so the teasing was fairly limited. But I will say that tamping down my own intelligence to fit in was a big part of why it took me so long to embrace my artistic voice.

How can we make the conversation about diversity where it needs to be?

I'd like to see more opportunities for out of the box thinking with respect to writing. We tend to see the same stereotypical tropes rolled out over and over in books. Let's get some fresh material in! And with fresh materials, let's mix up the character traits too. Diversity works best when it isn't forced and we deserve better stories to showcase our diverse natures, likes, dislikes and personalities!

I also think it's imperative that we all - bloggers, writers, creators, and consumers - support the good stuff! There is so much quality content out there and we have to do a better job of helping draw attention to it.

Do you feel well represented in books and/or media?

Nope. Not even close. The world still focuses on petite, non-WOC and I'm a tall, full figured, WOC. Queen Latifah has been off the air too long!
(My longterm idol <3 )

What has been your favorite character to create and why?

I love having realistic protagonists, even in speculative fiction. Marla, the protagonist in my Skatia Narratives series, has been my favorite because I love her voice. She's forced to grow up fast on a crazy new planet after a pretty painful loss. I also love how the character has evolved over the span of the series (I'm currently working on Book 3)

What types of books did you like consuming growing up?

I loved series books when I was a kid. Sweet Valley High, Babysitter's club, those type of series where the characters grow and evolve and really become like friends were what I loved first. They always had a token black character and I could really relate to that!

What would you tell your teenage self that you wish you knew now about your growth?

Don't listen to your haters! Jealous people don't give good advice so do what you need to be happy and live the life you want.

Are there any books(or form of media) that you thinks gets representation right?

TV is getting better at diversity and inclusion on screen, but a LOT more work is needed off-screen to get representation right. So much work.
Why do you write the types of books you write, and do you plan diversifying genres in the future?

I started with Fantasy because it's my love. I just love a book with amazing worldbuilding and inventive characters, so I had to start there. I have also release a romance novel and plan do to some pure literary fiction at some point.

Who is your favorite Book Bae?

Daemon Sadi from Anne Bishop's Black Jewels series. I just imagine him as smooth and sexy and so dangerous!!

Like most folk, you're a big SFF fan, so we have to ask! If you can have any superpower or supernatural ability, what would it be?

Telekinesis. All day. I am so lazy...
What type of advice can you give to those starting out?

Someone out there wants to hear what you have to say, so ignore that voice in your head that says no one does.

What sites would you recommend for those trying to educate themselves better on the conversation about diversity in books and media?

#DiverseSFF #WeNeedDiverseBooks #WeNeedDiverseRomance

Finally, where can folks go for updates, and to learn more about your projects going on?

Official Site 
The Skatia Narratives Website

LA Hendricks is an IT project manager by day and a novelist by night. A longtime lover of words, she reads science fiction, fantasy and paranormal romance novels regularly (when there is time). When not reading, writing or working, LA can most often be found watching football or basketball with her adorable cat, Mona.

OMG! All that and a bag of chips, and to top that off, she's offering a copy of her e-book "The Half Breed Queen" for the month long giveaway! 


  1. Queen Latifah is definitely a person whom I admire. I love her movies and music, and just her all around goodness as a person. I grew up on her and Naughty by Nature.


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