Good Morning lovely Readers! How are ya’ll doing this morning?
Today I’m introducing my new feature, New & Emerging Black Authors. Each week, I will be featuring an amazing new and emerging author. Pretty cool, huh? I just love to give new authors a chance and this is one way that I enjoy doing just that! I hope you will welcome them with open arms and give them a shot! So without further ado, here is our first featured author, Author E.N. Hardy!
WHO IS E.N. HARDY?
E. N. Hardy was born and raised in Inkster, Michigan. Writing became a passion for her at a very young age, as an outlet, and as a means to deal with trying circumstances. She loves to write poetry, erotica, and in her own words “emotional fiction.” The only thing that matters to her is the way you “feel” after reading her work. She enjoys a career in healthcare education, and does lots of reading in her spare time. Her all time favorite author is V. C. Andrews, with Frank McCourt being a very close second. In 2012 she began working on her debut novel, I Used To Cry: The Essence of Essence. She currently resides in the Metro Detroit area with her husband and four children. Her favorite phrases are, ‘When All Else Fails Just Write’ and ‘Because All I Want To Do Is Make You Feel.’
LET’S CHAT! – The Interview
Good Morning Ebony, thank you for agreeing to join me here today. What inspires you to write?
My love for words is what inspires me to write. I can easily lose myself in writing, and creating alternate realities for myself!
Why did you chose to pen, I Used To Cry? Does this story has a message that you wanted to convey?
I chose to pen this because it was a story that needed to be told! It was therapeutic for me as well. There is most definitely a message! One that has the ability to influence men and women of all ages. I wanted people to know that it doesn’t matter what your circumstances are in life, or what you’ve endured in life, or whatever struggles/insecurities you’ve faced. You matter, your life matters, and perseverance matters! No matter how dark the now may seem there is always a light at the end of the tunnel.
Do you recall the first book you’ve ever read?
Yes, in fact it was My Sweet Audrina, V.C. Andrews!!
Do you read much? If so, who are some of your favorite authors?
I read a ton!!! Some of my favorites are VC Andrews, Frank McCourt, Sista Soulja, David Weaver, Jessica Watkins just to name a few. There are so many more.
In your opinion, what is the most important thing about a book?
Editing. Being an author I understand that things get overlooked but I have a hard time reading a book with a ton of errors.
How do you feel when people recognize you in public and show their appreciation for your work?
Honestly, shy!! LOL. I’m so humble and such a normal person, that all of the attention was hard to adjust to.
How is your writing style different from other writers?
Well, I am quite the descriptive writer, but not only do I want to paint a picture for you to see, I also want to make you feel. I write emotional fiction.
Have any new writers grasped your interest lately?
Yes!! Author Dom Laray and Marneta Heller Griffin!!
If you had the chance to bring your book to the big screen, which actress would you prefer to star as Essence?
Good Question!! LOL. I would choose Danielle Brooks from, Orange Is The New Black!
What is the meaning behind your phrase, ‘All I Want To Do Is Make You Feel?’
For me it’s not about notoriety, or how good the story was, or even the meaning behind it. I just want to know how it made you feel. In any of my writing, I feel obligated to make emotions a priority.
What are some of your hobbies, other than reading & writing?
I enjoy crafting, and decorating. Lol. I am a stationary junky that loves pretty things.
Tell our followers an interesting fact (or two) about yourself that fans/readers may not know.
I am a Teacher and self-proclaimed Unicorn.
I understand that you have your very own publishing company, Hard Pen Publications. Why did you decide to start this company instead of signing to a publisher? Are you accepting submissions and do you currently have authors signed to Hard Pen?
Well, Hard Pen is currently active, but just for my own work. I had one not so good experience with an author and decided to fall back on accepting submissions for the time being. I felt as if I signed with someone that I would lose all creative control. My life, My Story, My rules. I have had offers, but as I suspected was asked to pull my current work from publication and change covers and things like that. I’m not willing to do any of that.
What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
You can do it! If you love to write, and have a story to tell, GO FOR IT. Also, get familiar with the business side of being an author, there is so much more to this than writing books. Research marketing, and promotion, and don’t rush it.
Is there anything you would like to say to your readers, as well as potential new readers and fans?
Thanks for all of the support. Thank you for the amazing outpour of love, the reviews, the inboxes, all of it!! I am so grateful.
Thank you so much for chatting with me today Ebony! I really enjoyed getting to know you better.
Thank you for having me!!
Connect with Hardy via social media to stay updated with her exciting journey! You’ll never miss a beat of what’s she’s up to, upcoming releases, giveaways, freebies + more!
Subscribe to her – Website
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Like her – Facebook Fan Page
Follow her on – Twitter
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Friend her on = Facebook
Send her an – Email
Follow her on – Goodreads
Follow her on – Amazon’s Author Central
And now … the Books!
E.N. Hardy’s Debut Release
Based on true events, I Used To Cry The Essence of Essence is an epic coming of age novel that captivates the reader from beginning to end. An emotional tale chronicling the life of Essence, a young girl from the streets of Inkster, Michigan. She had it all. A good home, loving family and friends, beauty, and brains. When a traumatic turn of events changes her life forever, Essence is left emotionally crippled with a jaded perception of self, life, and love. For years her life is in shambles. She finds herself on a path of destruction fueled by pain, struggling to pick up the pieces. All she wants is to be loved, and accepted for who she is, but not even she knows the true answer to that question. Will she ever find what she’s looking for? Take this journey with Essence as she discovers the true essence of herself.
Get A Copy
Genre African American Fiction, Coming of Age, Urban Fiction, Young Adult (YA)
Series I Used To Cry
Publisher Hard Pen Publications
Publication Date July 1, 2017
Print Length 250 pages
In the final installment of The I Used To Cry Series. Essence has been given a second chance at life, and she is determined to make it count. Coming to the realization that she needs a major change, she cautiously steps out on faith. The end result is a complete 360 degree transformation from the Essence that we met in part one. Like a beautiful butterfly emerging from its cocoon, Essence has a new identity. But the dark place from which she came is reluctant to release it’s hold on her. Experience this EVOLUTIONARY journey to self acceptance, happiness, and maybe even love, through the emotional eyes of the one and only Essence Hudgins. From the author who is still determined to make you feel, E.N. Hardy. Are you ready?
Pre-Order your signed paperback copy.
READ AN EXCERPT
This excerpt is from, I Used To Cry II: Essence Evolved.
Inside of everyone there is a light shining brightly. And then, there is life. Life brings about situations that have the potential to dim even the brightest of lights. For me Tone was that situation. Whatever light that was left deep inside of me had been extinguished. Tone had put his all into my demise and he had succeeded. Not only did I die, but so had my spirit along with any hope of finding that indescribable love. A love that has a propensity to resuscitate the dead. That sparkplug love that would ignite/re-awaken even the darkest heart.
Tone’s hands were around my neck still squeezing, but my body had gone limp. I could no longer feel the burning pain from the cut that exposed the white meat on the side of my face. There was no fear of what he might do next. My heart was no longer working overtime to make up for the lack of oxygen to my lungs. All that was left in my world was silence. Black silence.
Tone stood over my lifeless body breathing heavily, sweat dripping from his brow, in a panic. He had managed to drag me from the bed to the floor ironically, in an effort to save my life. The faint sound of sirens could be heard in the distance which could only mean one thing. Janay had made her way to someone’s house and had called the police.
“Shit!” Tone yelled. “I gotta get the fuck outta here!”
Taking one final look around the room for something to conceal my body, he decided that the comforter on the bed was enough. He snatched it off and tossed it atop of me. His footsteps were heavy as he quickly made his way down the stairs and out of the apartment that day. The man that I loved had left me there as if I was nothing more than garbage. I stood there watching my death play out from outside of my body. An overwhelming sadness washed over me and I realized that I was helpless. There was nothing I could do. I screamed at myself to wake up, but my body didn’t move.
I watched as the Police entered my apartment, and ran up the stairs. They tossed the comforter aside, and started pushing on my chest. I noticed how discolored my face was, it looked gray. I stood there watching chaos unfold all around me. More workers poured into the room, but it was a sound from outside that now had my attention. I walked over to the window and looked out. People were starting to gather, nosey asses! A woman whom I had never seen before was holding my baby’s hand as she cried to see her mama.
The woman looked up at the window as if she could see me. Our eyes met as she mouthed the words:
I turned back to the workers who were still diligently trying to bring life back to my body. Her words became louder in my head,
I walked over to where I laid and a warm sensation came over me. Where there once was black silence, was now bright. I could hear and feel people all around me.
And that’s when I felt it. A painful jolt of electricity in my chest. It burned when circulation was restored. I gasped in an attempt to take a breath, and my lungs started to burn, to breathe, and I knew I was alive. My sweet baby girl, the one that I vowed to protect from the moment I laid eyes on her, had become my protector. Janay had saved my life. It saddened me deeply to think about how afraid she must have been that night. I can vividly remember how it felt to see my mother go thru it. I felt every punch she took. But what hurt me the most was the fact that I had allowed this situation to not only affect me, but my baby as well. And although Janay was very resilient, shit like that doesn’t just go away overnight. In fact, it would stay with her for the rest of her life.
Life for me had changed in an instant. It was like I was fifteen again the first time the switch was flipped. The first thing I was determined to do was survive. Tone though I was dead, and I intended to keep it that way. But y’all know how my life is set up right…
Have you had the pleasure of reading Hardy’s book? I did and I absolutely loved it! This chick definitely knows how to slay the pen. I highly recommend her. She’s one of my fav authors! So please, go buy her book NOW and pre-order book 2! You will not be disappointed! Oh, here’s my review on Goodreads.
Are you a new or emerging author? I’d love to feature you. If you’re interested or know of someone that may be, contact me! I’d love to get to know you and introduce you to my readers/fans! ~ Vaneka