Thursday, January 18, 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.

Comments
‘Fire and Fury’ burns up bestseller lists

‘Fire and Fury’ burns up bestseller lists

When author Michael Wolff was interviewed on the Today show about his book Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, Savannah Guthrie asked him how he felt about President Donald Trump’s attacks on it. Wolff responded, "Where do I send the box of ...
Published: 01/17/18

Events: Writers in Paradise features Banks, Lippman, more

Book TalkThe Writers in Paradise evening readings continue this week. All readings will take place in the Miller Auditorium at Eckerd College, 4200 54th Ave. S, St. Petersburg. Books will be available for purchase on site. All readings are free and o...
Published: 01/11/18
Notable: Books on Trump, one year in

Notable: Books on Trump, one year in

NotableOne year inWith the first anniversary of Donald Trump’s inauguration approaching, here are new books about him. Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House (Henry Holt) by Michael Wolff is the incendiary look at the administration that provoke...
Published: 01/11/18
Andre Dubus III reads to ‘sink more deeply’ into the human condition

Andre Dubus III reads to ‘sink more deeply’ into the human condition

NightstandAndre Dubus IIIEckerd College’s Writers in Paradise conference takes place this week, and one of the returning faculty members is Andre Dubus III. Dubus is the author of six books, including Bluesman, Townie and two novels turned films, The...
Published: 01/11/18
Steph Post’s Florida noir ‘Walk in the Fire’ a sizzling sequel to ‘Lightwood’

Steph Post’s Florida noir ‘Walk in the Fire’ a sizzling sequel to ‘Lightwood’

In Steph Post’s new novel, Walk in the Fire, there’s a young aspiring criminal with a gift for astute observation. Asked to describe the tiny Central Florida town of Silas, where much of the book takes place, he says, "You drive through and it’s like...
Published: 01/11/18
Former Times columnist Klinkenberg named Florida Folk Heritage Award winner

Former Times columnist Klinkenberg named Florida Folk Heritage Award winner

Raise a glass of fresh-squeezed orange juice and toast former Tampa Bay Times columnist Jeff Klinkenberg. This week, he was announced as one of three 2018 winners of the Florida Folk Heritage Awards.The awards honor outstanding folk artists and folk ...
Published: 01/10/18
Harry Belafonte, who will visit USF, reflects on friendship with Martin Luther King Jr.

Harry Belafonte, who will visit USF, reflects on friendship with Martin Luther King Jr.

In 1964, when they were both 37, Harry Belafonte and his friend Sidney Poitier traveled to the town of Greenwood, Miss. As the two entertainers made their journey to meet with members of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, they were chased...
Published: 01/09/18
New book from Tampa tax attorney tops bestseller lists

New book from Tampa tax attorney tops bestseller lists

Tampa tax attorney and certified financial planner Rebecca Walser hit the timing sweet spot with the Jan. 3 publication of her book, Wealth Unbroken: Growing Wealth Uninterrupted by Market Crashes, Taxes, or Even Death (Atlantic, $22.95 paperback, $4...
Published: 01/08/18
Two dying memoirists wrote best-sellers about their final days. Then their spouses fell in love

Two dying memoirists wrote best-sellers about their final days. Then their spouses fell in love

SAN MATEO, Calif. — The literary pairing was inevitable."When Breath Becomes Air," Paul Kalanithi’s memoir of his final years as he faced lung cancer at age 37, was published posthumously, in 2016, to critical acclaim and commercial success. "The Bri...
Published: 01/04/18
Review: Lippman’s ‘Sunburn’ a sizzling salute to James Cain

Review: Lippman’s ‘Sunburn’ a sizzling salute to James Cain

It doesn’t get much more noir than James M. Cain. Or at least it didn’t until Laura Lippman’s Sunburn came along. Back in the 1930s, Cain wrote a couple of novels that pretty much established — and perfected — the noir ...
Published: 01/04/18