A Chicago native who migrated to the south, novelist Patrice Baylor Leigh found her desire to expand her skills as a writer. In Atlanta she found the living was easy and decided to pursue a career in public relations. Placing her education degree on hold for a bit, Patrice embraced her desire to return to mass communication and forged ahead to land a few jobs in broadcast radio, writing for Christian magazines and developing her skills as a songwriter. In between these assignments she segued back to the classroom, teaching grades Pre-k through 7.
Maintaining a home for her husband, who is a minister and her sons, is what she does when not writing or traveling. She enjoys crafting¸ reading and watching television. She maintains a journal and often spends time making entries on her blog.
As a pre-teen Patrice loved writing short stories. In her teens she discovered she was a hopeless romantic and began writing poetry. Writing poetry led to the first novel, Looking for the Promise. “It took about three months to find my voice as a writer but once I got started I finished the novel over my summer break,” says Patrice of her first offering.
Ideas for her novels and short stories come in various forms; listening to conversations, watching people at the airport, and from her artistic surroundings. The idea for this novel came as a result of something she endured while on her last teaching assignment.
Patrice says that writer’s block is inevitable but when she has nothing to say, writing automatically shuts down. That’s when she pulls from her crazy imagination and hope what she writes makes sense.
As a general education teacher Patrice says she was as fond of the short stories she assigned to her students. In the student readers there was one story about an overweight kid who was always picked on by his peers. “I think that’s where I came to love the word “serendipity”. I love reading about people overcoming challenges, inspiration and romance,” Patrice says.
Originally Looking for the Promise was self-published. There were no challenges there. While at dinner with a couple of friends Ms. Baylor Leigh decided to share her book. As it turned out one of the friends with whom she was dining was a publisher. Voila! She is looking forward to a beneficial association with PassionateWritersPublishing.
Since signing with Passionate Writers Publishing Ms. Leigh is excited that she has been given an opportunity to do a revision of the story. In the rewrite she says she was able to correct some things she missed when she self-published. Self-publishing as an avenue for new writers is a good choice. Be prepared to put in the work to get your book noticed she advises.
Ms. Baylor Leigh has a strong presence on Facebook and YouTube. She recommends that you Google her to see what others are saying about her work. She is a frequent blogger and maintains a website. She incorporates her skills as a programmer on internet radio. She has been invited to speak at book clubs and sometimes teams up with other writers for book signings.
The upcoming book is a sequel to Looking for the Promise. It’s told in a series of sequences with the character Marva Stewart Shepherd pursuing her dream of traveling to Italy. Nothing is simple with Marva and the story continues its twists and turns. Her latest project includes working with other writers to build an author’s mall at a major convention. In addition to that she is working on building an internet radio presence on Spreaker. She also participates with The Association of Gospel Songwriters, a group of songwriters who share information and skills with one another.
Patrice advises aspiring writers to read everything they can, broaden your base of knowledge and research your topic. The best advice given to her was to write something every day, whether a postcard or a novel. Just keep writing.
She asks her friends and fans to please continue to support new writers by purchasing their books and encouraging your circle of friends to buy not borrow your books. Don’t forget to follow Patrice on Facebook at Patrice Baylor Leigh or logging on to her blog at www.pRhomise.blogspot.com and visit her web page at http://pRhomise.weebly.com.