Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Briana Cole Interview - The Marriage Pass

Photo Content from Briana Cole 

Briana Cole is known as The Literary Drama Queen because of her passion for both writing and acting. She began writing short stories and poetry at a young age, then went on to use her poems to start a greeting card business in high school. After graduating Cum Laude from Georgia Southern University, she signed with Kensington/Dafina Books and published the critically-acclaimed Unconditional series.

Her acting career is just as notable with numerous theater accolades and starring roles on TV shows, such as Fatal Attraction and The Paradox. Briana is also a mother of three and proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated.

What was the greatest thing you learned at school? 
The greatest thing I learned at school was the tremendous benefit of marketing and public relations. For example, we watched the movie Wag the Dog which detailed how the government was able to successfully distract from a presidential sex scandal by fabricating a war and how the object is to use the tail to “wag the dog” (meaning control us), much like marketing and advertisements try to appeal to our needs and wants. Along those same lines, I also learned why the marketability of Nike was so successful with its Just Do It campaign; because it spoke to everyone. Whatever it is that you want to do, just do it, whatever it is for you. Some people want to be engineers, some want to be beauticians, or doctors or musicians. Just do it. That has always resonated with me because those three little words are so motivational, speaking to each of us specifically and everyone at the same time.

Tell us your latest news. 
I am making a movie! In addition to writing books, I am also a screenwriter and I wrote my very first solo feature film a few months ago. We are now currently in production with this movie and I am executive producing and starring in it as well.

Who or what has influenced your writing, and in what way? 
My biggest influences are my favorite authors, for example Victoria Christopher Murray, Kimberla Lawson Roby, Terry McMillian, and Maya Angelou, just to name a few. As prominent women of color, I am constantly reminded of the limitless possibilities and it’s motivating to see what I can accomplish.

Tell us your most rewarding experience since being published. 
Since being published, my most rewarding experience was having a two-page spread in the May 2019 issue of Sophisticate’s Black Hair Magazine.

What do you hope for readers to be thinking when they read your novel? 
I want my readers to think things like, “wow” and “I can’t stop reading.” I write with them in mind and I want to put them on a rollercoaster ride of emotions that will have them devouring each page until the very end.

In your new book; THE MARRIAGE PASS, can you tell my Book Nerd community a little about it. 
Absolutely! The Marriage Pass is about a couple who celebrates their anniversary by gifting each other the gift of opportunity—a hall pass. The husband uses his hall pass with his wife’s sister and the decision leads to a domino effect of dire consequences.

What was the single worst distraction that kept you from writing this book? 
The worse distraction that kept me from writing this book was time, or lack thereof. I am balancing so much at once between my writing and acting career, plus being a mommy while working a full-time job, it’s taxing trying to find the time to do it all. Plus, I’m the type of writer that doesn’t just put out “anything.” I owe it to my readers and the literary community to give the very best, each time my pen touches the paper. So finding the time to devote to this book like I wanted was definitely a challenge.

What part of Dorian and Shantae did you enjoy writing the most? 
I enjoyed writing about their relationship the most. These two have been together since college and they’ve faced so many obstacles together. It was fun to watch the dynamic of their relationship play out because of their past mistakes and successes that shaped them into the people they are.

If you could introduce one of your characters to any character from another book, who would it be and why? 
I would love to introduce my character Shante to Kimera, from my book The Wives We Play. Kimera is in a polyamorous relationship so I think these ladies are two sides of the same coin, yet could really learn a lot from each other.

  • 1. I am a Disney Fanatic! In fact, on my bucket list is to travel to all of the Disney Resorts around the world.
  • 2. I can cry on-demand. It’s an interesting fact, I know, but certainly comes in handy in my acting field.
  • 3. I was a champion equestrian (horseback rider) as a teenager and I received accolades in both English and Western saddle.
  • 4. I got married at the age of 19. We have since divorced but still remain good friends.
  • 5. I’ve always had the entrepreneurial spirit. I actually started my own greeting card business called Heart-Felt Expressions when I was just 16.
  • 6. I am scared of heights, but I love roller coasters. How crazy is that?
  • 7. I was a pretty well-rounded child. I was a ballerina, tap dancer, gymnast, tennis player, majorette, equestrian, cello player, model and actress.
  • 8. When I was younger, everyone always told me I looked like Brandy, specifically her character Moesha.
  • 9. My favorite actress is Angela Bassett.
  • 10. The most spontaneous thing I’ve ever done was book a solo trip to LA at the last minute for a 4-day weekend so I could get some writing done. I called it my K.I.T.T. (Keep It Together Trip). It worked. I came home with a renewed peace of mind and a completed novel.
What is your favorite restaurant in town and why? 
My favorite restaurant is this quaint Italian spot in Conyers, Georgia called Milanos. The food is authentic and absolutely delicious. Plus, the ambiance attributes to a great dining experience, as if you’ve stepped right into the middle of Milan.

Best date you've ever had? 
The best date I ever had was for Valentine’s Day when we went to The Sweet Spot, which was a burlesque variety show. So unique and so much fun!

If you could go back in time to one point in your life, where would you go? 
I would probably go back to college at Georgia Southern University. It would be fun to relive those college days and create new memories and experiences.

What's the memorable summer job you've ever had? 
The most memorable summer job I had was working at the AMC 24 movie theater. I made so many new friends there, plus it was nice being able to see the movies before they released to the public.

Most memorable birthday? 
My most memorable birthday was when I turned 12. My dad surprised me with my own horse.

Which incident in your life that totally changed the way you think today? 
The incident in my life that completely changed the way I think today was when I had my first child. I had a different kind of motivation to achieve my goals, because it was no longer just for me, but for my baby.

What is one unique thing are you afraid of? 
I have crazy trypophobia, meaning an aversion to numerous holes or clusters. It actually makes my skin crawl to see. In fact, just now I had my fiancĂ© type the word in the search engine to make sure I spelled it correctly because I can’t even hold my phone with that word on it, just in case an image pops up.

What was the best memory you ever had as a writer? 
The best memory I have as a writer is the first time I saw my book on the shelf at Walmart. In fact, to this day, anytime I see my books on shelves in stores, the feeling is still surreal and I can’t believe my lifelong dream has finally come to fruition.

Where can readers find you? 
I love to say ‘google me’ because my name does come up first in search engines. But you can find me everywhere; on my website Brianacole.com, on IG and Twitter @bcoleauthor, and on Facebook as Briana Cole. I maintain a very active presence on social media and I enjoy connecting with readers, supporters, and other people in the industry. 

Can you really have the best of both worlds?

He’s rich, successful—and has been faithfully married to his longtime girlfriend for nearly one gruelingyear. Because for Dr. Dorian Graham, too many women is never too much—no matter how loyal his wife, Shantae, has been since their college days. So when she proposes they celebrate their first anniversary by each spending a no-questions-asked, no-consequences night with their greatest temptation, Dorian is shocked, but can’t resist. Especially since Shantae’s wild-card younger sister, Reagan, is gorgeous, uninhibited—and the one who got away . . .

It turns out one sizzling night with Reagan isn’t enough. Yet the more Dorian takes, the more she demands—and the more he suddenly has to lose. Soon, with his mind games being used against him and his every move checkmated, Dorian will be forced to go all-in on one last desperate play to win. But winning might just be another way to crash and burn . . .
You can purchase The Marriage Pass at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you BRIANA COLE for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of The Marriage Pass by Briana Cole.