We’re excited to introduce you to the always interesting and insightful The Blakk Dahlia. We hope you’ll enjoy our conversation with The Blakk below.
The Blakk, appreciate you joining us today. How did you learn to do what you do? Knowing what you know now, what could you have done to speed up your learning process? What skills do you think were most essential? What obstacles stood in the way of learning more?
Honestly, it was a learn-as-you-go process. I researched self-publishing books and asked other indie authors along the way. Also, I took advantage of various resources available online to help self-published authors. Distributors like Amazon and Draft2Digital were key in setting up and publishing my books along with advising on important logistics such as formatting for both ebooks and paperbacks. My writing and marketing skills came into play for developing descriptions for books and SEO practices to grab the eyes of book lovers.
Having a better understanding of the editing process would have significantly helped in the process. It definitely would have saved a lot of stress during publishing time. There are always last-minute changes, tweaks, and technological needs to ensure the book is rolled out correctly.
Due diligence was the most essential skill for me. Books are like painting a picture with words. So, not only do you have to cover all bases within the writing, it came in handy for the publishing and releasing parts as well. Knowing when to set certain dates, keeping up with distributor deadlines, and copyright details. It is imperative to check all the boxes when self-publishing. Even more important because you don’t have a machine (publishing company) to do it for you. It’s a complete DIY project.
I don’t think I had anything in my way. Of course, it would have been easier to know everything. However, learning while going through the process provided an “experience education” that paid off in the long run. Each release after my first book became easier and easier.
As always, we appreciate you sharing your insights and we’ve got a few more questions for you, but before we get to all of that can you take a minute to introduce yourself and give our readers some of your back background and context?
My name is E. Alexcina Brown and I write under the pen name, The Blakk Dahlia. I am a self-published romance author and blogger. I create fiction stories based on certain events in my life to provide a different perspective on dating, relationships, etc. All these things are wrapped up in my book series, the Heartbreak Diaries. Each book provides a different perspective on a specific characteristic of how I (and many other individuals) enter a relationship which many times end up in heartbreak. The books tackle liking loving with the following:
The Foolish Heart (Book: Rushing to Distraction)
The Toxic Heart (Book: Wrong Vengeance)
The Settled Heart (Book: Devastation or Destiny???)
The Selfish Heart (Book: The Perfect Sin)
The Grieving Heart (Book: Replacement)
The purpose of my writing/publishing these stories is sharing what I’ve learned along with showing that we all are not alone. In developing these stories, I had to look at myself and ask “What did I do wrong? How could I have prevented this heartache?” Of course, being hurt in relationships can’t always be preventable, but it’s important to gather all the lessons in these moments and apply them in the future for personal growth.
What’s unique about the series is that it provides a “Dear Diary…” moment within each story that shows an in-depth look into what the character was thinking which led to certain actions.
I’m most proud of looking at the final products and hearing what readers think about my stories. This has been a long time coming. I started on my first book in high school and have written since then. I never published those, however now I feel that it was the practice I needed that led me up to this moment. Now to have five books on the market is a dream come true and I’m able to share my stories with book lovers around the world!
What I want people to know about my brand is that I challenge myself to be 100% real with my stories and this series. I’m able to take a long look at myself and the characters. There are no goody-two-shoes as we’ve seen in many after-school specials. All characters are openly flawed and the ones who are invested in being better do the work to get there.
Is there mission driving your creative journey?
I think my goals change over time. At first was to finish, then to publish. Now, I think it’s a goal to continue to create stories that relate to and entertain. I’ve always wanted something that will live on beyond me.
Also, I’m looking to expand the series and bring them to life. I’m currently working on looking into other avenues to where I can take these stories…Stay tuned!
What do you find most rewarding about being a creative?
The most rewarding aspect is inspiring others to either do the same (write and release their work) and/or go after that creative aspiration they’ve been holding onto. I started this series in 2014. Many times, I didn’t think I would ever release them and see them through the process of self-publishing. However, with time and perseverance, I was able to complete what I started, and I want others to see this journey and get motivated to either get started or stay the course in their own endeavors.
- Website: https://www.TheBlakkDahlia.com
- Instagram: BlakkDahliaWrites
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/theblakkdahlia
- Twitter: @TheBlakkDahlia
- Other: Author Profiles Good Reads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18561491.The_Blakk_Dahlia AllAuthor: https://allauthor.com/author/theblakkdahlia/ Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/The-Blakk-Dahlia/e/B07G5NWKB5