Vallean Jackson Interview – Put My Imagination On Paper
Away from writing, Vallean Jackson describes herself as a complete girly girl, who’s into fashion, hair, nails, and falling in love. She loves music with a passion, and would rather listen to that all day than watch TV. Vallean Jackson has a degree in journalism but points out it’s a totally different platform to creative writing.
Sam Hunter: Vallean Jackson, welcome to UrbanFiction.org and thanks for finding the time to sit down with us.
Vallean Jackson: Sure, it’s a pleasure.
Sam: Let’s pick up on what you were saying about writing platforms.
Vallean: Being an author you can be yourself and express yourself in ways that journalism restricts you from. So despite my lack of creative writing training, I write from my heart and that’s what guides me. That’s what I thrive on, putting my heart in whatever I write, and if my heart is not in it than I can’t commit to the project.
Sam: I can feel the passion already.
…not receiving any payment and being deceived is the worst…
Vallean: I am passionate, and I want to surpass the restrictions placed on my life. The restrictions of what I can’t do and can’t afford. My dreams are too big for restrictions.
Sam: So, tell me about your latest book, Hustler from Conception: Withdrawal.
Vallean: My latest book is the third and final part of my Hustler from Conception series. It’s the chapter that determines the outcome of AC’s complicated life. Though she tries to walk away from what she was born into, her past and present drag her back by the answers she’s always wanted.
Vallean: I kind of got the inspiration from the inner bad ass in all of us, that we’re all at times afraid to let out. Maybe not to AC extremes, but it’s there and also the life that people see and want, but don’t really know what comes with it to keep it or what it took to get to where they are now.
Sam: Is there an experience of your own inner bad ass that you could share with us?
Vallean: That’s the funniest thing ever, I truly don’t think I do. Well not that I can think of at this time. Check back with me though!
Sam: What’s the theme that runs through the books?
Vallean: The overall theme is loyalty, in my opinion. And how the truth eventually comes, whether for the good or the bad.
Sam: Over the series, can you give us a flavor of how AC’s character develops?
Vallean: AC’s character transitions from what she was born into, how what she was born into made her the person she was, and her decision to step away from what has always been a part of her family blood line. Basically her growth from the streets to finding her way to stand on her own.
Sam: Talking of standing on your own two feet, I understand you’ve faced some challenges with people accepting the genre of your work. How’s that manifested itself?
Vallean: Well, I’ve not gotten the reviews or responses I wanted, or expected.
Sam: And how do you handle it?
Vallean: It’s a challenge to accept, but it makes me want to write and expand my writing horizons so I can reach readers that can more so relate.
Sam: Are you thinking of expanding into other genres?
Vallean: Yes, my biggest genre I am working on and hope to conquer is children’s books. Because our generation has fallen to hell, and the best way to create change is to start at the root and that’s with the children. So I want to create a line of children’s books that do that. Be encouraging, motivating, and bring children back to being a child. I’m working on bringing about a difference and secondly, I am currently working on two projects. One very dear to me and the second is holiday inspired.
Sam: With so much going on, what keeps you motivated and writing?
Vallean: Well, I actually fell off in my writing recently and am just picking it back up due to publishing issues, but my desire to help people and possibly reach the world is my motivation. I have picked it back up because I want to help people, let them know it’s okay, have my children read my books (those created for them) and most of all just make a difference.
Sam: Publishing issues? Do you want to expand on that and give an insight into your experience of the publishing process?
Vallean: Publishing process…good overall, but not receiving any payment and being deceived is the worst part that I encountered.
Sam: Is there any advice you’d like to give to other authors just setting out because we hear this a fair bit in Urban Fiction circles.
Vallean: Yes, first off research your publishing company and if you decide not to then have somebody review contracts, and as far as writing, be original and what you put your heart into will always be the best results. Because even if you fail, you know you gave it your best, which is what matters most.
Sam: So, you’re with a publisher now?
Vallean: No, I’m not and I am not going to until I have my books I’m currently writing completed and I find somebody who I can trust as well as who’s going to accept me and offer me great benefits that’s going to help my career flourish.
Sam: Have you ever considered going independent?
Vallean: Yes, I have and I think that might be next best option. Might even branch out and start my own independent publishers.
Sam: Bringing it back to the good stuff, what’s the greatest joy of writing, for you?
Vallean: Being able to step outside myself in a sense and put my imagination on paper. And sometimes reading back over my work just makes me so proud because it at times seem like I’m reading a great author’s work that I’ve always read and admired before I even started writing.
Sam: What’s your writing process?
Vallean: I don’t think I have a process. I just write and type when I feel like I need to release some of the ideas flooding my mind. At times a week straight and at other times over a period of time.
Sam: You said you love music so much, do you listen to it as you write?
Vallean: Not really because it’s kind of a distraction. I love music too much to just ignore it. I would have to dance or sing along to what’s being played. So to eliminate the distraction, I would rather not.
Sam: Tell me about your writing space, desk, sofa, library, coffee shop…
Vallean: My writing place is either one of three places: my bed, the sofa, and my favorite the floor -it’s so comfortable.
Sam: And when you’re in that space, head in the creative zone, you’re writing for your fans, among other reasons. Do you think about your fans and what do they mean to you?
Vallean: My supporters mean a bunch to me and I at times wish I had more, but the few I have I adore because it’s down to them that I know how readers view my books and me as an author. And because of them I know what I can improve on or add to keep them supporting me and future works of mine.
Sam: What’s the code you live by?
Vallean: Live! Because if you don’t live, you can’t love, you can’t laugh, and you can’t learn
Sam: What projects are you working on right now and is there another book we can expect anytime soon?
Vallean: Don’t know if it will be anytime soon, but I am definitely working on plenty of projects that I hope on, and am working on, fulfilling with a better publishing company this time.
Sam: I’d love to hear more when that happens. Come back and give us and update.
Vallean: I’m happy to.