Afrocks Interviews: Pamela Haynes, Author of The Novel “Loving The Brothers”
Quick catch up with Pamela Haynes, author, public speaker following the publication of her book ‘Loving the Brothers’, rated 4.9 out of 5 stars on Amazon. A must-read!
Hi Pamela, congratulations on the success of your book “Loving the Brothers”. Can you tell us the inspiration behind it?
Thank you very much! 2017 signals my 30 years career working in the Criminal Justice System and I was fast approaching a milestone birthday. I wanted to mark it in some way by either completing my masters or writing a book. Fortunately for me, I chose to write my first novel Loving the Brothers and my book was published 8 weeks before my 50th birthday!
Without giving the plot away for those who have not read it, can you briefly tell us what it is about?
Three beautiful black women meet the Morgan brothers. All is not what it seems and women plan to leave the brothers on the same day! I hope I haven’t given too much away!
“I really do believe that I am part of a renaissance of black authors in London and the UK, who are writing their own stories, creating new publishing houses, editing, typesetting and printing our own narratives and above all enabling people of colour to self actualise.”
A number of your characters have natural hair/locs, was there a particular motive for this?
All of my characters have natural hair even though one of them covers hers by wearing a front lace wig. For me, it was important to track the story of black women who are on their own natural hair journey and I wanted to celebrate black professionals who sport their natural hair in the workplace and still break through glass ceilings in their chosen careers.
“Loving the Brothers” leaves the reader wanting more…please tell us there is a part 2?
I have a few thousand people across the world, who are waiting patiently for me to finish the sequel to Loving the Brothers called Loving the Sisters. I am writing the second book at the moment, but I have been distracted by the opportunities to appear on the radio and on television. I also travelled to Dublin, Ireland and to Barbados (where my parents are from) to talk about my book, to encourage women to write their own stories and to raise awareness about domestic abuse. I’m hoping to complete Loving The Sisters in spring 2020.
There is great success with characters/protagonists with natural hair (Loving the
Brothers and Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams), why do you think this is?
I read Candice’s book Queenie as part of my 70 book challenge earlier this year and it was amazing, deserving of the awards and accolades she has received. I really do believe that I am part of a renaissance of black authors in London and the UK, who are writing their own stories, creating new publishing houses, editing, typesetting and printing our own narratives and above all enabling people of colour to self actualise. For me, I was fed up and bored of seeing the same dry text by the likes of William Shakespeare and Jane Austen occupying traditional spaces. Therefore I want to encourage budding writers to get their books on the same shelves too, leaving a legacy for their children and their children’s children.
“I had a really bad perm in 2005 […] I decided to grow the perm out and I hid my hair under headwraps and hats whilst undergoing holistic treatments for hair loss. I eventually interlocked my hair at a salon locally to me in 2007”
Do you have any tips for those with aspirations to write a book?
You don’t need an expensive laptop or software to write a book. Loving The Brothers was written using old fashion pen and paper and some chapters were dictated on my mobile telephone. What you do need is passion, patience and motivation. There are loads of book mentors and coaches out there to support you as you commence your book journey from writer to published author.
When did you start your loc journey and what prompted you to go natural?
I had a really bad perm in 2005; bald patches the works. It was so depressing! I decided to grow the perm out and I hid my hair under headwraps and hats whilst undergoing holistic treatments for hair loss. I eventually interlocked my hair at a salon locally to me in 2007. I did the ‘Big reveal’ in a public place in front of my mother and sisters. Their opinions and validation were important to me. Flash forward nearly thirteen years and we all have natural hairstyles, but I am the only one with locs.
How do you relax?
As you can imagine I had a very stressful job working as a Senior Probation Officer in the probation service, so I had to create coping strategies quite early on in my career. I strongly believe that in order how to be a good writer I had to be a prolific reader. I enjoy reading novels by Black British authors, especially those authors who chose to either self publish or use smaller independent publishing houses. I read 50 books last year and I set myself the challenge to read 70 books this year! I am about to finish book 45 this week. I am a member of two film clubs, a book club and I bake and decorate ‘Bajan’ celebration cakes for my family and friends.
What is your favourite book and what are you reading at the moment?
Oh dear! I am a huge fan of Andrea Levy, Robyn Travis and Terry McMillan. I have read everything they have ever written. But my all-time favourite book is entitled A Piece of Cake by Cupcake Brown. I am reading Mr Loverman by Bernardine Evaristo, which is a fantastic enlightening read so far. The beauty of being a member of a book club is that you get to read books by diverse authors in a wide range of different genres, from sci-fi, autobiographies, fiction and self-help books.
QuickFire Questions – Just for fun!
Hardback or Kindle?
Love or wealth?
One superpower you wish you had?
Reggae or Revival?
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/prhaynes/