Leiann B. Wrytes is an author, poet, and playwright. Leiann found a love for words early on as a spoken word poet and was inducted into the International Society of Poets at 15 years of age. She went on to become a staff writer for her high school newspaper, editor of her church’s newsletter, and that of the local Key Club, a volunteer organization on campus. Leiann has since then performed spoke word poetry at numerous events and had a stage play performed to a modest audience which received good reviews. Leiann’s background is in customer service but writing has always been her first love. Leiann B. Wrytes currently resides in Dallas TX with her family feverishly working on her sophomore novel.
BPM: Introduce us to your current work. What genre do you consider your book?
My debut novel, Virtuous Deception, is the first in the deception series. We slid it into the industry as a contemporary romance novel but it has a little bit of everything in it. It has the who is really guilty question that we love about Scandal fused with the complicated emotional family dynamic that we enjoyed from Soul Food. A fast paced drama about family, friendship, and finances. Laced with healthy dose of lust and love.
BPM: What inspired you to sit down and actually start writing this book? Why now?
Writing was always in the cards for me. N’Tyse entered into my reality at a really good time. I was in an excellent space, prepared emotionally and mentally, for everything that would eventually be borne out of my relationship with her. This book happened because I was able to recognize and seize the opportunity as it was presented to me. She opened the door to a new phase of my life but it was on me to walk through that door. She really encouraged me to take the leap and once I decided to jump, it was done. There was no going back from there.
BPM: Why publish Virtuous Deception now?
It was time, it really was, and the transition was seamless, not without pain, but absolutely necessary for my growth not only as a writer but as a woman.
BPM: Does your upbringing, prior relationships or life experiences inspire your writing?
My life is like a smorgasbord of literary gifts. The human experience is so varied and rich that I cannot help but be inspired by it.
BPM: Where do your book ideas come from? Are your books plot driven or character driven? Why?
My stories are derived from reality 99% of the time. The story I have in mind, when my fingers first graze the keys, morphs into something completely different by the end. The books are definitely character driven. As an avid reader, I have found that the characters stay with you a lot longer than their situations. If you fall in love with the character, you will follow them anywhere. The potential, then for an author to make an impact on a reader, is increased exponentially. Overall, though, I aim to entertain, more than that, I want to encourage personal evolution in some way. Leave something of value with the reader.
BPM: Give us some insight into your main characters. What makes each one special?
Virtuous Deception is an ensemble. The main characters are Lisa, Frank, Michelle, and Brianna. Each of them in their own way bring something beautifully unique to the story. Lisa is a mother, wife, a fighter. She carries her titles proudly and weaves between them so effortlessly that we hardly notice. Frank is on the edge of a change and it adds a layer of vulnerability to him that’s interesting to witness. Michelle and Brianna are two sides of the same coin. The story tosses them into the air forcing them to land somewhere different.
BPM: What defines success for you, as a published author?
There are no limitations for my writing career. I love every aspect of this business and I want to do it all. Success is a state of mind. Naturally I want to sell books but that’s only because, sales are confirmation that you have created a product that people love. That people are willing to invest in you, to support you. Personally this moment, speaking with BPM, is a testament to my success as an author.
BPM: What are your expectations for this book? What would you like for readers to do after reading this book?
I hope that the readers enjoy it first and foremost. Secondly, I hope that it’s a catalyst for a serious dialogue about the dynamics of family and friendship. The human condition is durable but extremely sensitive. We need to handle one another with love. Everything that is said or goes unsaid makes a difference. I would like for readers to operate with this in mind.
BPM: Did you ever ask yourself, “Why am I doing this? Should I change course and maybe try to get something else?”
Never. I have stretched myself paper thin in order to do this and it almost feels like I would be cheapening the process thinking that way. This is a part of who I was, am, and will be. I cannot imagine a time where I would ever need to question why I am doing it.
BPM: Do you feel as if you are a role model for women and other authors?
I am not perfect but I will shoulder that position with humility and the dignity it deserves. I won’t run from it or cower under the pressure. The decisions I make are for me and my family but I understand that we are all apart of the human experience.
BPM: What projects are seen working on at the present?
Currently, I am working on Virtuous Deception 2: Playing for Keeps, The Storm a literary fiction novel, and a short that will be in an anthology next year. I have a lot going on but I wouldn’t want it any other way.
BPM: How can readers discover more about you and your work?
Please reach out to me on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook @ leiannbwrytes. I also will have a web page soon, http://www.leiannbwrytes.com. I would love to hear from them! My novels are available on Amazon (www.amazon.com/author/leiannbwrytes), Barnes & Noble, or you can request it from your local bookstore. Again please feel free to reach out to me as well!
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