Meet Rising Author Diahann Carroll

Monday, 07 November 2011 04:18 Written by  Stormi Texas

Today it’s had to find a good African American book to read. In most bookstores, the African American section doesn’t have the selection as far as quality or quantity, compared to other sections. The most popular topics you’ll find are fast girls trying to live the good life, drug dealers trying to be the next kingpin of their neighborhood or city, or crimes many people will commit trying to gain respect from people. Trying to break into the urban book industry can be a challenge.


You have to bring something new to make readers be interested in your work. Diahann Carroll, the author of “Oops: A Bronx Girls Tale,” tells the story of a young girl losing her way when it comes to money, fancy cars and designer clothing. Carroll chose to depict a different side to urban books characters and show readers not all characters have to end up empty handed at the end.



GlossMagazineOnilne (GMO): How did you get the idea to write Oops: A Bronx Girls Tale?

Carroll: I grew up in the Bronx. I had seen a lot of things happening with myself and my friends while we were growing up.

GMO: Tell me about the main character Ebony.

Carroll: Ebony grew up in the Bronx. She’s dating a big time drug dealer. She thinks the fast money and fancy clothes is the life to live. She’s the head of her crew. She feels there is something missing from her life. She doesn’t have a connection with God.

GMO: What was the process of writing this book?

Carroll: The first thing I had to do was get my book name copyrighted. When I would go to other authors book signings, I would always ask them questions about writing a book. They would always tell me it’s a long process and lot of work. I found a printer and made my own layout for the book. I sold 150 books by hand. I did a lot networking with people.

GMO: How long did it take you to write the book?

Carroll: It only took three months to write the book. The book was sitting around for six years.

GMO: Did you do any research for it?

Carroll: No. The book is self-expression, up close and personal.

GMO: Why did you give the book an 80s theme?

Carroll: I grew up in the 80s. I love the 80s style, with the big gold chains and the door knocker earrings. Also, we had the best music during that time. I used to stand around and rap back then.

GMO: What lesson is Ebony teaching young girls today?

Carroll: Ebony is teaching young girls that having fancy things doesn’t mean anything. The person who’s giving you all those fancy things can make you feel low. Just because something looks nice, doesn’t mean it’s good for you. You don’t have to sell yourself short.

GMO: Breaking into the urban book industry can be challenging. How do you separate yourself from other authors?

Carroll: Many of the urban books don’t show the character’s connection with God. In most books, the girl gets the man at the end or the man leaves. You never see the character’s spiritual connection.

GMO: While writing your book, did you ever think readers might compare your book to Fly Girl by Omar Tyree and The Coldest Winter Ever by Sister Souljah?

Carroll: My book is totally different from those two books. If a reader told me that, I would take it as a compliment. Being compared to Sister Souljah is an honor.

GMO: Describe your style of writing.

Carroll: I’m a realist. I don’t put out fake stuff. I don’t like to sugar coat anything. We live in a very harsh world.

GMO: Will there be a second part to Oops: A Bronx Girls Tale?

Carroll: Yes, the second part should be coming out in February.

GMO: You took a different route when it came to distributing your book? Why did you decide to not work with a major bookstore?

Carroll: Every bookstore I went to wanted 40 percent of the profits. Someone always had a catch from major companies to private own stores. I reached out to one of my friends, who is a cook. He let me do a book signing at his place of business. I started to make my own flyers and started to hand them out everywhere I went. I started going to the streets and talking to strangers about my book and people would buy the book on sight.

GMO: What were some of the challenges you faced on your first project?

Carroll: I was nervous for my first couple book signings. I though people might not show up and there would be an empty room. I started to questions myself, “Will this book help anyone?” I also thought people might not like the book.

GMO: What are some of the comments you’re getting from readers?

Carroll: Readers come up and tell me they love the pilot of the book. Also I always hear, “Are you Ebony?” Older readers tell me the book takes them back to the old days and it gives them an old school feeling on how the Bronx used to be.

GMO: If you could change anything about your book, what would it be?

Carroll: I wouldn’t change anything. I would leave the book just as it is.

GMO: What advice would you give to an up-and-coming author?

Carroll: Anything is possible and you don’t need to settle for anything.


Stormi Texas

Stormi Texas

Stormi Texas is a GMO staff writer.

She can be contacted at