#Black Girl Magic: Featuring Raynesha Pittman!

Raynesha Pittman is a prime example of the saying “What we come from does not dictate what we will go on to be.” An honors student and certified as gifted, she was in a Los Angeles juvenile corrections center when she discovered her love for writing. Her first novel, Kismet, was published in 2010. Pittman has since published several more books. She was nominated in the Hip Hop in the Ville Awards for Best Indie Author of the Year in January 2012 and was also nominated in the Prodigy Publishing Group’s second annual Urban Literary Awards for Most Likely to Succeed Debut Author of the Year in February 2012. In 2015 she was nominated for Journalist of the Year in the Southern Entertainment Awards. She currently lives in TN with her, “Roq” and six children.

KG: What is your favorite genre? Why?
RP: Legal thrillers and historical Data (Documentaries or Biography)

KG: When did you decide to write professionally?
RP: My initial venture into professional writing was in 2010 as a result of a dare to be the female undertone in a novel that was written as a duet from both the male and female perspectives. I can’t recall where the ball was dropped but the end result was me completing the manuscript by myself. After that journey, I knew I’d finally put my finger on my true passion.

KG: What is one word to best describe your writing style?
RP: Raynesha’s.

KG: Describe your writing life.
RP: Continually evolving. With every stroke of the keyboard and imaginative thought, I strive to push myself harder than each time before so that I am always pushing towards my best work, my best effort and pushing the envelope on imagination. I love historical data and researching. Finding a way to sprinkle it in each book without boring the reader is an adventure in itself.

KG: What is your greatest literary accomplishment?
RP: Having my talents recognized by the legendary K’wan Foye with a two-book deal for the Dog Food series. This opportunity to opened so many doors for me which has to lead me from the indie side of the industry to traditional. In all honesty, K’wan blew open doors I didn’t know existed and it has changed my life.

KG: What advice would you give an aspiring author?
RP: Continually hone your craft, never take no for an answer (never quit), be as creative in business as you are in writing.

KG: Who is the target audience for readers of your work?
RP: I’ve been put in the category of urban fiction or urban romance geared towards women and men ages 18-35. I feel that my writing has progressed passed the label of urban and can fully stand in the suspense drama or mystery or the standard fiction genre. Expanding my work in subject matter and writing style also expanded my audience to a broader base to include men and women of all ethnicities and financial portfolios. I’d like the target audience to see me as a black female author who is an educated orator turned illustrator to some and storyteller to others. My target audience is the world.

KG: Tell me about your latest release and what made you write it.
RP: My most recent releases were short stories in two-holiday anthologies released under my publishing company, Bah Humbug and Off With His Head. There were so many authors I admire signing up to contribute stories that I couldn’t dare miss the opportunity to jump in.

KG: How did you get into screenwriting?
RP: Another opportunity that I couldn’t let pass me by.

KG: Explain the process for shopping a screenplay around, is it easier or harder than shopping a manuscript around to a publisher?
RP: I have no idea of what the process is like. I was blessed to have been reached out to by an Emmy nominated producer because of my books. Hopefully, after this show is completed I will be to come back and share my first experience.

KG: What are your long term literary goals?
RP: To become a household name like China as an author and publisher.

KG: What are some of the current projects that you are working on besides being an author?
RP: I’m learning to produce, direct, publishing and live. Each task harder than the next but I’m prepared for the adventure.

KG: How do you find the balance between being a mother and your professional life?
RP: It’s a daily balancing act. If the scale tilts to either side more than the other something suffers. It’s an ongoing battle but love and passion will conquer all.