Crystal Smith: The Rising Phoenix .
Authoress Crystal Smith has endured her fair share of hard times growing up in the ‘A’ (Atlanta) a prominent city run by African-Americans where one can rise through the flames like the legendary phoenix or go down in flames like the heart-breaking sight of the Twin Towers of New York. Within this interview Crystal shares her thoughts about her book To Love, Honor, and Betray, in tandem with obstacles that she has had to overcome on the road to success. She shares her unique views and experiences she seen throughout the ‘A’ about life, love, and betrayal within the city limits of Atlanta that are widely known for it’s eye-popping, raucous, and wild strip clubs full of what many deem as eye candy as expressed in this video by Lefty Luciano.
No She’s Not in love with a Stripper But you may be…
Bio Of Crystal Smith
Crystal Smith is a 26 year old African American Author that has loved the art of literature ever since she could remember. Growing up she spent majority of her time writing short stories, poems, and music. She completed her first novel “Secrets in the A”, at age 19 after graduating from Benjamin E Mays High School in Atlanta Georgia (2006). She later went on to attend Bauder College majoring in Criminal Justice while leaving her writing dreams behind for a short time. After years of completing amazing college papers, she decided to send her works to different publishing companies. In 2013 she was recognized by Ruby Love Publications and became one of the new authors of the publishing company, with her novel “Secrets In The A” being released on Friday April5,
2013. After releasing her first novel Crystal begin working on new projects and was discovered by Peach Doll House Publications, becoming one of the first authors to be signed, with her novel “To Love Honor & Betray.” Crystal currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia, employed as a Juvenile Probation/Parole Officer for the State of Georgia. She is currently working on other great projects, so keep your eyes open readers and be on the lookout for the name CRYSTAL SMITH. There’s plenty more coming to a bookstore near YOU!!! And so the fans wait!
Book Synopsis In her Own Words
This fast paced Urban Saga, with the perfect twist of spirituality and real life drama will take you on one of the most exciting rides of your life; blessing you with a valuable lesson with each turning chapter. This unforgettable page turner will leave you breathless while allowing you to experience secrets, sex, and spirituality unfold right before your eyes.
Patience, a college student by day and a stripper by night ventures out into the cold streets of Atlanta all alone to do whatever it takes to make her dreams a reality. Being a ward of the state for most of her life contributed to the foundation of her ambitious nature and her stone cold heart; as she carries the weight of the world on her shoulders trusting no one. Patience only interest at this point in life was SELF; she figured that was all she needed because it was all she’d ever had. Her self-made nature left very little room for anything else especially LOVE, a force so unfamiliar to her. Is love powerful enough to break the toughest person down and change their entire life forever?
Essence takes on Atlanta by storm with her chain of Lofts in Atlantic Station and her endless amounts of cash flow. Essence is drowned in money and her soul is filled with pride as she blindly lives the perfect life with her perfect family. She has everything a woman could want and she HONORS herself and her family above it all. Is the price of honoring the dollar bill a little bit more expensive than she can bargain? Is the perfect life that she honors really the “perfect life”?
Jade was forced to grow up before her time, and with very little parental influence she hits the streets hard and gullible as ever. Scarred from her traumatized past and mentally broken from her abusive relationship, leaves her fighting for her life. The cards life continuously deals her makes it hard to determine if BETRAYAL is her true motive as she fights hard to play the hand.
The gritty streets of Atlanta will show you exactly what it means to Love, Honor, and Betray, as you travel on a journey with these three ladies who all share a very special bond. Is there a price to pay for love? Can too much honor ultimately destroy you? Is every form of betrayal considered personal, or are some things just out of our control?
The answers will be vividly revealed as you enter into a world that will soon be turned upside down by the one and only. Love, Honor, and Betrayal will be the common denominator for these three friends; each woman getting hit with their own dose of the three forces.
Street Certified Interview
Q: Where are you from?
A: I am from Atlanta, Georgia, born and raised!
Q: Do you feel the people from your hometown including family and friends have supported you enough?
A: The majority of the support I’ve received has come from readers! I’ve received so much love and support from total strangers In Atlanta and from many other states as well. My close family such as my mother, sister, a few of my cousins, and my DJJ family, supported me majorly and I am grateful for them. This new seed (Becoming an author) has come with both joy and pain. The joy outweighs the pain though and I give glory to God for revealing the unseen to me. However, I will end by saying that, I love my readers and supporters, you guys are AWESOME!!!
Q: What are you currently working on?
A: I’m currently working on Pt2 of To Love Honor And Betray. I am also working on a few other projects as well (Don’t want to drop the beans too early lol). Expect Pt2 later this year readers!!
Q: Are you Self-published or under a publishing company? Why did you choose this route?
A: I am currently under a publishing company. The name of the publishing company is Peachdoll House, owned by author/publisher Sevyn McCray and Chanel Jones. Peachdoll House is a sub-company of TBRS BRS owned by David Weaver. My first Novel, Secrets In The A, was under publishing company Ruby Love Publications, owned my author/publisher Tajanna Sutton. I chose this route because I believed with
so many new urban authors on the rise, exposure would be a great assets in this business.
Q: What obstacles did you overcome to publish this book?
A: Honestly, by the grace of God, I didn’t have many obstacles in my way when it came to publishing my novels. I completed my first novel at age 18. I didn’t think too much of it until age 23/24 after graduating college. I sent my novel out to a few companies during submissions and I was selected by Ruby Love Publications. I agreed to the contract and we went from there. After Book 2 was complete, I wanted new opportunity, new growth & new heights, so I chose to go a different route with publications. I’m still trying to grow and I’m must say that I’m not finished just yet!! There will be more to come from Author Crystal Smith very soon!!!
Q: At times your book focuses more so on the materialistic aspect of your characters’ lives. Do you feel that many urban fiction authors often emphasize on those aspects too much, or is it due to their environment?
A: I focused on the material aspect of my characters, to somewhat vividly reveal to the readers the type of life the characters lived. One of my characters “Honors” the dollar bill. What better way for me to convey this message than by using material things? I believe it’s just an environment thing. When you really think about it, being BLACK & SUCCESSFUL (Whether the success is gained legally or illegally) brings about a different way of living. Those materials could be driving in a dream car, living lavish and having all of those desired items, or simply splurging and spending money on whatever the eyes appeal. It’s all around me here in Atlanta, Ga. I see my black brothers and sisters everyday living a life that many said we would never live. It’s just a way of me bringing a little reality into the novel, sharing bits and pieces of a few things that people love!
Q: What did you learn while writing this book?
A: I learned that every situation we experience in life comes with instructions. All of the characters lived different lives, however, I was able to use the word from the bible to apply it to every situation encountered. I loved searching for scriptures to match each chapter and applying the word to my novel!
Q: What did you hope to accomplish with this book?
A: I wanted to reach a new audience with this novel. I didn’t want the novel to be all urban with just drugs, murder, and sex. I wanted my readers to take something back with them after reading. I wanted them to learn lessons by applying the word to our everyday life. I implemented bible verses at the beginning of each chapter, to give the readers a little synopsis of what that chapter would be about. I was pushing for spiritual urban fiction, something that would end with a moral, possibly adding value to my readers lives.
Q: Which character did you enjoy writing about the most and why?
A: I enjoyed writing about both Patience & Reggie. Patience and Reggie both need & craves love. However, they are the most stubborn and they won’t open up to allow love to enter into their lives. The two characters remind me of someone, that’s why I enjoy/enjoyed them the most!
Q: What has astonished you most since becoming a published author within the urban industry?
A: I was astonished by the hate/jealousy amongst our African American Authors. The urban book industry is about as worse as the music industry.. Smh!! Another form of division for us!! We must learn to build each other up & not break each other down!
Q: What facet of writing do you love the best, and which do you dislike the most?
A: I love Urban literature/ Urban Christian. I really don’t have a genre that I dislike, although I don’t care for Sci-Fi & Horror.
Q: What are at least two things you wish you’d known before you published your work?
A: 1st wish:: I wish that I would have known how easy it was to do everything that I know now. 2nd wish::: I wish that I would have thought really hard about my first book cover. My 2nd cover is bomb.com & I want to make changes to the 1st cover!!!
Q: Can you give me a couple of dos and don’ts for the next generation of hopeful would-be authors?
A: No. I really don’t have a list of Do’s and Dont’s for future authors. Every generation comes with something new & exciting. Authors are going to learn and grow from their own mistakes!! My words of advice would be to tell them to DO GREAT!!!
Q: What’s one thing about writing do you wish other non-writers would understand?
A: OMG! I wish readers understood that when we as authors write characters, we are doing so to get a point across, to tell a story. The characters should not be the reason you give a horrible review. Readers, a book review should be an overall of the entire novel, not just the parts you pick and choose!! Lol
Q: When you’re not writing, what do you like to do in your spare time?
A: In my spare time I love to watch my favorite shows, look at a good drama filled movie, shop until I drop, or cuddle up with me a great book to read! Some of my favorite shows are: (Love & Hip Hop NEW YORK & ATLANTA, The Fosters, Rookie Blue, Being MaryJane, and NCIS). Some of my favorite books are: (Thicker than Water 1-3 By: Takerra Allen, Bankroll Squad 1-3 By: David Weaver, and Love, Lies, & Lust Series).
Q: What do you find to be the strength of Urban Fiction in comparison to other mainstream genres?
A: I would say that the strength lies in the major support from our readers!! Just as many people have their favorite genre of movies to watch. I would say that Urban Fiction has it’s many readers! Dedicated readers that are willing to come back for more again & again!!! If we as urban authors learned to support each other a little better we would be even greater!!!
Q: This next question is very serious so I want you to think about it very carefully before you answer. Comprende?
A: Si!! I comprendo!!! Lol
Q: If you were to make it on the Oprah Winfrey show would you look out for the little people if you were to have a Legrand payday?
A: Of course, I look out for people now & I’m not rich at all!! It doesn’t take riches for me to look out. If I can help anyone in anyway then it is done!!!
Q: Would you buy me a car and fly me out to Vegas for one week? LOL!
A: Yep, we could go anywhere you’d like!! What kind of car would you like???… I’ll go ahead and inform you on my dream car so that when you make it, I know I’ll be hooked up!!! BMW X6 truck!! Lol
Q: If not, how about dinner and a ride to the bus station, or maybe an Italian supper?
A: We’re going on the trip, so I guess we could grab dinner along the way!!!
You can purchase To Love, Honor, and Betray byclicking the link below:::::
Crystal Smith’s Amazon Author’s Page