Deanna Smith
Urban Book Source
May-June 2006
Deanna SmithOn the eve of 2003 Deana Michelle Smith decided to unleash the writer inside her. Born and groomed in Chicago, Deanna began writing at a young age penning her frustrations. Since then writing has been here refuge and comfort zone, allowing her the opportunity to give herself a break from reality and wander realms not possible in everyday life. A mother of two children and a wife, Deanna has inked her first novel Reign Storm, which she promises to be a hit.

UBS: You say you used to write to vent your frustrations. What situations made you turn to pen and pad the most, and what kinds of writings did you do?
Deanna:
My relationship with my mother. She stirred the writing monster inside of me that was waiting to be released. LOL We kinda grew up together and she wasn't always the type of parent I needed her to be. So instead of disrespecting her outwardly, I would write my feelings and eventually the venting turned into some pretty wild stories.

UBS: What made you go with writing full gusto after 15 years with the government?
Deanna:
The government job can be very tedious and boring. However, the only great thing about it is the wages. You don't work, you can't eat. But writing is the most fulfilling form of work I've ever come across.

UBS: Can you tell us what Reign Storm is about and the inspiration behind it?
Deanna:
Reign Storm is about overcoming naivety, selfishness, vanity, and immaturity by way of near self destruction. The protagonist, Storm, represents those characteristics and she has to go through pure hell in order to finally catch on. My inspiration, I can honestly say, came from my own experiences as well as our new breed of young ladies. Now I ain't saying that I had an affair with a famous R&B singer and glued his penis but I am saying that I could have avoided a lot of heart ache if I would have listened and made better judgment calls.

UBS: Why do you think so many of our youth go down the wrong road?
Deanna:
Of course it's the bling. They don't realize everything that shines ain't platinum. It could also just be the need or the desire to stand out and have the spot light. I don't have the answer to everyone's problem but a lot of times shit can be avoided if you just took the time to listen to your elders and not your peers. Most of the time your peers don't know a heck of a lot more than you do.

UBS: Do you think that our hip-hop and now Urban Fiction culture plays a part?
Deanna:
It's possible but pinpointing it or blaming it on one source isn't fair. Of course people tend to get confused with reality and fiction at times and it clogs their intelligent reasoning. But I personally blame the individual for being irrational and actually trying to make their fantasies come to life. TV and fiction is exactly what it is: Entertainment. If there were a rash of teenagers jumping off building with capes on their backs, would they blame the Superman series? I mean come on.

UBS: When you are not writing, what kinds of books do you read?
Deanna:
Urban Fiction, Contemporary African American Fiction

UBS: Do you have a favorite author?
Deanna:
I've been so busy with my next novel, Out Law City, that I haven't been concentrating on any other authors. There are just too many talented ones out there to select one.

UBS: Where do you see Urban Fiction in 10 years?
Deanna:
Still banging, just like hip hop.

UBS: Do you consider yourself a socially conscious writer?
Deanna:
I definitely try to be aware because that is the only way to relate to my targeted audience: our young adults.


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