Steamy, Psychological Thriller. I am aware that I am combining or mixing genre. In truth, in the beginning, I was advised to leave off, from initially interested members of the established sect.
How did you come to choose it?
Life and Theater. I am a performing artist. Eight shows a week; I present a heightened version of life, condensed in two and a half hours. Life is about layers. Experience deepens the layers. Living a full life enriches the layers. To dig my hands in the soil and tell a story, I needed to use the layers of my life. Drama, Travel, Sex, Charm, Booze.
Why does it appeal to you?
Sex and Puzzles. I like both. My mother was a social worker at a mental hospital. I was brought up with a sense of self and the importance of knowing why certain choices are being made. The moment before always colors the present and future. In my mother’s house, if you did something right or wrong, you had to have a reason for doing so.
What do you find most challenging about the writing process, and how do you deal with it?
Knowing when to stop. I love to write, revise and edit.
When and where do you do your writing?
I travel for a living with a family in tow. I have conditioned myself to write anytime, anywhere. I write when my daughter is doing her school work independently. I write in the offstage dressing booth at the theater, in between scenes. I go to cafes, even bars.
What have you learned about promoting your books?
Get all the help you can get! In theater, when booking a gig, we say, you've got to have a bag of tricks. Metaphorically it is your talent, experience, contacts, and wherewithal. It suffices to say, I riffled through my bag. My record label, Doubajen Records, has been awesome at cross promoting.
What are you most proud of as a writer?
Number one--writing a book. Number two--writing a soundtrack to a book.
If you could have dinner with any writer, living or dead, who would it be and what would you talk about?
James Lee Burke and Tennessee Williams. I wouldn’t talk. I would listen, soak up everything they had to share, then beg them to allow me to write with them.
Currently performing in the Broadway National Tour of The Book of Mormon, Monica has worked with such notables as Jesse Norman, Diahann Carroll and Freda Payne. She covered Eartha Kitt as the Fairy Godmother in Rodgers and Hammerstein's’ Cinderella and sang opposite Jon Secada as the Narrator in the National Tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Her other credits include; Broadway: Finian’s Rainbow, Abby’s Song, and Ragtime. Off-Broadway: Little Ham. National Tours: Disney’s The Lion King, Annie 30th Anniversary; City Center Encores! productions: On The Town, Pipe Dream, Fanny, Anyone Can Whistle, Purlie, Finian’s Rainbow and Applause. The Distinguished Achievement in Production award was presented to Here in Harlem: Poems in Many Voices, by Walter Dean Myers. Monica was honored to have been a featured Narrator on the production. when she is not onstage, you can find her in a quick change booth--writing, playing video games with her daughter or perched on a stool, having a craft cocktail.
Monica Patton @neogeishaforeve