Having fallen in love with literature at an early age, it only made sense for Stacey Covington-Lee to seek a career that would allow her to combine her passion for writing and her Communications education from Savannah State. During her lengthy career in the insurance industry as an Instructional and PC Trainer, Stacey wrote and developed multiple training guides and manuals for both insurance companies and local government.
It was at the encouragement of a dear friend that Stacey wrote and released her first novel, The Knife In My Back. Continuing her exploration of love, friendship, and betrayal, she has since given us The Knife In My Back 2, Bitter Taste Of Love, and her much anticipated, Hate The Way He Loves Me.
Stacey is an Atlanta native and has found great enjoyment in visiting book clubs and speaking at various events throughout the Southeast region. She loves hearing from readers and invites everyone to visit her website, http://www.staceycovingtonlee.com, follow her on Twitter (@covingtonlee) as well as Facebook (www.facebook.com/staceycovington-lee) and IG (scovingtonlee).
BPM: How did you get to be where you are in your life today? Who and what motivated you?
Stacey: I’ve gotten to be where I am through faith, hard work and a strong support system. I’ve always had aspirations of being an author, but it was my faith in God and my abilities that pushed me to realize this dream. I’m so fortunate to have an amazing support system in my family and friends. Their encouragement, especially that of my son and dear friend, Cassandra Smith, is all the motivation I need to continue this literary journey.
BPM: Who does your body of literary work speak to? Do you consider authors as role models?
Stacey: My work primarily speaks to women in the age range of twenty to sixty-five. My topics of love, friendship, betrayal, and overcoming are subjects that every woman can relate to on one level or another. As far as authors being role models, I would have to say no. For me, authors are entertainers with the unique ability to shine a light of awareness on very relevant social issues.
BPM: What inspired you to sit down and actually start writing this book? Why now?
Stacey: I was inspired to write this book by the many stories we hear every day about women being victimized. Whether it is the local news or celebrity news, domestic violence seems to always find its way to the front page. I felt compelled to write this now because I wanted someone to find strength in this fictional story. It’s entertainment with a purpose.
BPM: What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
Stacey: I most enjoyed writing about the courage that the most unexpected characters seem to find and draw upon at what might look like their weakest moments.
BPM: Where do your book ideas come from? Are your books plot-driven or character-driven? Why?
Stacey: My ideas come from observation and sometimes discussions. Simply watching people, how they interact with one another, and the things they say can lead to the most interesting book ideas. Thus far, my books have all been plot-driven. I know how I want the stories to play out, but I’m often surprised at which characters step up and show strength, and which ones crumble under pressure.
BPM: Could you tell us something about your most recent work? Is this book available in digital forms like Nook and Kindle?
Stacey: Hate The Way He Loves Me follows the lives of the Shaw women. Sisters Zoe and Pam, and their mother, Martha. These women suffered unspeakable abuse at the hands of Martha’s husband, Otis Shaw. That is until Zoe steps up and seemingly frees them from his clutches. The ladies now have an opportunity to start over in a new city with great opportunities and even the possibility for true love. But Zoe soon discovers that instead of finding love, she has stumbled into another abusive situation. Now it will take the strength and courage of all the Shaw women to free Zoe from her abuser and break the chains of their past. Hate The Way He Loves Me is available in all digital forms including Kindle and Nook.
BPM: Give us some insight into your main characters or speakers. What makes each one so special?
Stacey: The main characters in Hate The Way He Loves Me are Zoe and Pam Shaw, and Ramon Martinez. Zoe has always been seen as the strong one. She’s the one that everyone looked to for courage and direction. Pam on the other hand has always been the weak, feeble one. But as this story plays out, we see their rolls slowly shifting. At first glance, Ramon appears to be a man of good character. But he has secrets of his own, ghosts from his past that negatively influence every moment of his life.
BPM: Are there under-represented groups or ideas featured in your book? If so, discuss them.
Stacey: The under-represented group in this book would be the males that grow up in abusive homes. When it comes to abuse, women always seem to be the focus, the victims. What’s rarely discussed are the effects that observing abuse on a continuous basis has on our boys.. Boys that grow up in abusive homes are far more likely to be abusers in their adult life.
BPM: How does your book relate to your present situation, education. spiritual practice or journey?
Stacey: What most people don’t know about me is that at one time I too was the victim of domestic violence. And I thank God every day for giving me the means and courage to remove myself from that situation.
BPM: Did you learn anything personal from writing your book? Can you share some stories about people you met while researching this book?
Stacey: What I learned in writing this book is that I was one of the lucky ones. I got out of my situation and never really worried about retaliation. However, it is when they try to leave their abuser that most domestic violence victims face the greatest danger. I was allowed to join an online domestic violence support group as part of my research. Many of the stories that I heard were horrific and I thank God that those ladies were able to survive and escape their abusers.
BPM: What were your goals and intentions in this book, and how well do you feel you achieved them?
Stacey: My goal, as always, is to entertain. Through the process of entertaining, I wanted to shine a light on a very real social issue. I think that I accomplished both goals with this book. It is a captivating story that makes the reader view domestic violence a little differently.
BPM: What projects are you working on at the present?
Stacey: I’m currently working on my fifth novel, Sisterly Love, and seriously considering revisiting The Knife In My Back series. Part three maybe?
BPM: How can readers discover more about you and your work?
Stacey: Please visit me on my website: http://www.staceycovingtonlee.com, where you can read excerpts from all of my novels, see what’s next for me, as well as upcoming events.
Stacey Covington-Lee, Author: http://www.staceycovingtonlee.com
Hate The Way He Loves Me by Stacey Covington-Lee
Genre: Contemporary Fiction