Sunday, February 25, 2018
Books

What's Reshonda Tate Billingsley reading?

Nightstand

ReShonda Tate Billingsley

A writer who hails from Texas, Billingsley is a winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work. Her novels include Let the Church Say Amen (turned into a TV movie produced by Queen Latifah), I Know I've Been Changed and her most recent, The Perfect Mistress. She will be talking about and signing her new book in Tampa on Wednesday (see Book Talk).

Billingsley, who holds a degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Texas, now lives in Raleigh, N.C. In 2014, she and Victoria Christopher Murray created Brown Girl Books, a publishing company currently serving 40 writers. When asked if Brown Girl Books specializes in books for female writers of color, Billingsley explained: "No, the name came from how we are two brown girls that started the company, but we have male authors, white authors, authors of different ages. Actually the only thing we don't have are little boys because they have a problem with the name.'' On July 10, you can see another one of her books on screen: The Secret She Kept will premiere on TV One.

What's on your nightstand?

The Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes, and I just downloaded Tiffany Warren's The Pastor's Husband. I'm an avid reader.

How familiar were you with Shonda Rhimes?

I never read her, but because of the show Scandal (Rhimes is its creator), I've been familiar with her.

With several of your books being made into movies, do you see yourself as a visual writer?

I think so, but I don't watch a lot of TV, but I'm intrigued with writing. I'm fascinated by the writing, and that's really what I love to do. When I'm watching shows I'm watching for the writing.

Along with Scandal, what other series has you marveling at the writing?

Survivor's Remorse on Starz. I feel like that's a little nugget that people do not know about.

And what makes the writing so impressive?

It's the one-liners. It's the story flow. It has all the elements of good TV, but it's rooted in good writing.

Contact Piper Castillo at [email protected] Follow @Florida_PBJC.

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