Meet author Alicia Williams
Alicia Williams is a gifted actress, writer and motivational speaker. The Detroit native received a Bachelor’s of Art Degree in African-American Studies from the University of Kentucky . Alicia immersed herself in college life and formed Circle of Imani, a collegiate woman’s support group. Using the support group as a platform, Alicia facilitated workshops, retreats and performances which addressed concerns involving self-esteem, abstinence and family issues. Dedicated to using her talents to affect the lives of many, Alicia was inspired to write Up From Rock Bottom to encourage and strengthen people who have experienced or are experiencing their darkest hours.
Up From Rock Bottom
Bookseller http://www.bbotw.com/, http://www.amazon.com/
EDC: Tell us what motivated you to write this book?
AW: I am a natural encourager. I try to see the best in people. Given my backgroung as a performer, I was over the drama ministry at my church. I strayed away from safe skits and plays, I always wanted to push the buttom to provoke people to think, act, and feel so uncomfortable that you start reacting.
At the time, I started working on a series of skits called "Testimony Series" where I'd re-enact the lives of people who have gone through some dramatic situations. I thought, "Whoa, this is heavy. I need to share this with people beyond my church." The book was birthed out of that. I wanted to inspire, encourage and touch people to realize that they have a purpose regardless of their past. Besides, I can't sing and move people through song, and this was the next best option. :-)
EDC: Where are you from? What is your favorite book, music, movie, play?
AW: I hail from Detroit, MI! But, I've been all over the place. I live in Charlotte, NC, went to college in both Kentucky and Kalamazo, and went to acting school in NYC.
It is so hard to pinpoint one particular favorite of anything. I know that as a youth, reading Maya Angelou's "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" really spoke to me, especially when she spoke about the molestation. And, Claude Brown's "Man Child In the Promised Land" was another. And now that I am an adult and a writer, I look for different things...I love the flow of words in "The Bluest Eye", the characterizations in "The Kite Runner" and even the layers and depths of character in "The Coldest Winter Ever". But, no favorite one.
Movies? Hmmm...The Wiz! I love that musical. Oprah presents: Zora Neal Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God, I can watch that movie over and over again.
I love plays: Bring in da noise, bring in da funk! I love the energy! The Delaney Sisters...Gosh, that is a toughie...Wine in the Wilderness. I've never seen it, but I enjoyed reading it, plus I cast myself in the role, so there!
EDC: How did you feel when you saw your book on the shelf for the first time?
AW: My book isn't on the shelves yet, but to see it available online or on my table at a festival...wow. That is like having a child again. I carried that book in my spirit, labored over it, prayed about it, it kept me awake at nights, made me cry over the journey and changes taking place within my body and when it finally birthed...wow! amazing. To see it...I just look at the cover and it reminds me of how i used to stare at my baby thinking, "Wow, I did this?" And, to receive words from readers about how my book has blessed them, helped them and encouraged them...it makes me forget the birthing pangs just like I forget the pains of birthing my own baby.
EDC: Do you feel writing is for those trained to write or for anyone who has a story to tell?
AW: Initially, I felt writing was for those who were trained, and that thought paralyzed me for several years and prevented me from writing my own book. I felt inadequate! "Oh, I don't know the proper usuage of the comma, what's a preposition?" However, when I felt the urgency of God pulling my coat tail, I decided to finish the book to completion. I knew the right people would come along to edit and proofread it.
However, I took action and picked up some grammar books myself and made sure that my grammar, word usuage, punctuation was accurate. So, now, I believe yes! Everyone has a story to tell. People will come and edit it, just write the story, be proactive in finding the appropriate ways to write.
EDC: What is the best thing about being a published author?
AW: The best thing is proving to myself that I can break through limitations that others and myself have placed on me! The biggest thing in my life is starting projects. I am a great starter, but a horrible finisher. However, when I finished this book through to completion, that has been the greatest thing about being published. I can now say, "Yes, I can do this!" And, I can break the doubts of the naysayers and say, "If I can do it, you can, too.." And, if I want to let my ego get in the way, I think another best thing is letting my managers know that I am not an idiot destined to make copies, as they may think, but I am a published author! LOL!
Ella Curry, President/CEO EDC Creations