Dawn D’Antoinette is a single mom currently living in Los Angeles, and the author of Happiness available on Amazon. She is currently working on her second novel.

Full disclosure: I worked with Dawn D’Antoinette on her debut novel, Happiness. She’s one of those writers with a seemingly innate voice and sense of character. Her love story was indeed full of feel-good moments and true-to-life struggles. It was such a pleasure working with her, I had to take the opportunity to talk to her more about her writing life.

Dawn D'Antoinette

I’d love to know about any authors or books that inspired you.

My greatest inspiration was Eric Jerome dickey, his earlier books, though, like Friends and Lovers, Liars Game, and Milk in My Coffee. I loved his style of writing. He pulled you in the whole neighborhood, the whole city and used real landmarks so while you read you could really picture just where they could be. He also happened to be the first person I ever asked to read something I wrote. A few people had read this short I had written and were asking me about being a writer. I had made friends with him online and we had chatted a few times, so even though I was scared I asked . . . he said no . . . lol! That was when I realized I was just a fan to him and not the friend I had made up in mind. It was a little disheartening, to say the least. A happy ending to this story, though, was an upcoming author I had also met online did read it when I asked. He gave me some awesome feedback and told me it didn’t suck. His name was Timmothy B McCann. I need to look him and send him my book!
I also LOVE Kimberla Lawson Roby.

How long you’ve been writing?/When did you know you were a writer?

I found a love for writing in my creative arts class in high school. The funny thing is, I didn’t discover it until I was fighting for a passing grade because graduation was less than a week away. The sad part is, I let it go as soon as I got that passing grade and I didn’t pick it up again until I started writing poems from heartbreak in ’96, maybe ’97.
There are moments when I still don’t believe I’m a writer . . . like a for real, REAL writer. I didn’t take a class or study writing at all. So I struggle with the writer/author title.

What inspired Happiness?

I love romance movies. Nicholas Sparks kind of movies. I go and just sit and cry and love everything about the moments that I get taken away by in those two hours. Being African American, you don’t see very many of us in his movies. And I would think, well heck, I know black people vacation, and like the beach and sunsets, and even have money, so why can’t “we” have movies like this? Instead of the movies we make where we are always loud, and there’s a family reunion with a fight somewhere mixed in it. I mean that is us too, but it’s so stereotyped, it made me crazy. So I decided I wanted to make a movie, and before I could have that movie I needed a book about a feel good, simple, but something that could stand the test of time love story. Something people would want to go back to again and again, and cry EVERY TIME as if they had no idea what was going to happen. So I wrote it!

Do you have any words of advice for other writers of color?

Do it. Fear sets in, do it. You think you aren’t good enough, do it. If it’s your dream, do it. Don’t think you have to copy what is out there to be successful if that is what you are thinking. And don’t stop because you might not get what you want from your first go around, just do it. Have faith in yourself, and do it!

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Author: Whynott Edit

Hi, I'm Megan! My mission is to help underrepresented writers refine their words, strengthen their skills, and tell the best possible versions of their stories.

If you have questions/comments/concerns about writing, editing, or publishing, or want to suggest a post topic, feel free to reach out to me! megan[at]whynottedit.com