Finish this sentence: I am addicted to…
chocolate, good books and gorgeous shoes!
What advice would you give another author who is struggling with procrastination?
There is always a fear element present with procrastination. I’d tell the author to look deep within and ask him/herself the question “what am I really afraid of?” If answered honestly, the answer will bring the author face to face with one layer of truth in their lives. Sometimes just admitting where we are and what we struggle with is enough to get the ball rolling. Other times, it may require more questions, to which I’d encourage them to ask if they are more afraid of whatever it is (from the first question) or getting to the end of their lives and having not accomplished what they set out to do. Typically, the weight of one will overshadow the other and help the person reach a decision. Thirdly, I’d tell them to look in the mirror and remind themselves how capable and worthy they are. Know that you are more than your setbacks, more than the mistakes you’ve made, and success is a divine right…so embrace it!
What flowers would be in your ideal bouquet?
I enjoy roses (pink and red ones especially), Calla Lilies, Tulips. I also enjoy the simplicity of daisies, and the childhood nostalgia of Cattails.
How do you celebrate a book release?
I like to do a reading and have a book signing, with good food, great company and a creative environment where others can meet, connect and get inspired.
Do you write full-time or part-time?
I’m a part-time writer, however, I am working on one aspect of the literary arena all the time; be it reading & reviewing other’s works; writing articles for my column, blogs or my motivational moments meant to uplift woman, or editing for independent authors or for the publishing company I contract with. Somewhere in the midst of all of that, I find time to write my books also.
Describe your dream date.
I’m a simple pleasures type of woman. A picnic by a body of water (sans the bugs and bird droppings – LOL), under a tree on a scenic grassy patch of land, in the midst of good company would be perfect.
What do you do for fun?
I enjoy reading, hosting small dinner parties, taking my daughter and her friend on play dates, dancing, interior design, exploring the cultural scene and listening to music.
How do you relax at an end of a long day?
I take a long soak in the tub with mile high bubbles or a steamy shower and slip on something comfortable that feels good against my skin, open the windows (even in the winter I open them just a smidgen), burn incense, light candles, cut on some of my favorite music, and eventually crawl into bed with a good book.
How long have you been writing?
I began creative writing at the age of seven when poetry was introduced as a second grade class assignment. I loved the way I felt after stringing together a series of words, and the power writing gave me to express myself when I was otherwise shy and felt voiceless.
What are your pet peeves?
Narcissism/selfishness and lying!
The stars seemed to have been aligned for Avery and Alicia. From the outside looking in, Lady Luck passed their way and left a fortune! They had a whirlwind, fairytale romance filled with all the little things that make dreams come true, a wedding of grace and beauty, and perfectly magical careers that produced almost enough money to burn. They were the picture-perfect couple.
Unfortunately, time has a way of revealing fissures in what appears to the naked eye as impenetrable. The results send this fairytale romance spiraling out of control.
Avery, as perfect and so right as he seemed, struggles to free himself from his demons. He clings to this delicate relationship that he desperately needs as if his last breath depends on it. Alicia, on the other hand, struggles to make the necessary corrections that will release her from a prison of unexpected, agonizing turmoil.
A novel of enduring strength, undeniable empowerment, and the compelling ability to overcome incredible odds, Book one in the When a Man Loves a Woman series is a powerhouse that will impact readers long after the last words have been read.
The first physical attack I suffered at Avery’s hands was about a year and a half into the marriage. Working in advertising can be quite wearing at times, requiring long hours and sleepless nights. Such was the case here. My team and I were trying to close the biggest account of the year. We ordered carry out for dinner and since Avery said he’d be late coming home, I figured we’d arrive home around the same time and I wouldn’t bother to call. I never answer my phone when I’m scrambling to meet a deadline. By the time we were finished, it was seven o’clock the next morning and I’d forgotten to call home.
I tried to be quiet coming in because it was Avery’s off day and I knew he’d be asleep. No sooner had my key touched the lock did the door fly open. Before I even had a chance to be startled about the door being opened for me, Avery had grabbed a handful of my hair, yanked me inside, closed the door and was repeatedly slapping my face. He was hitting me so hard I thought my eyes might pop out. I probably would’ve felt better if they had.
“Avery, stop! STOP! You’re hurting me!” He didn’t even seem to hear me.
“Are you cheating on me? Where have you been?”
“I was at work.”
“No, you weren’t. Do you know how many times I called there and got no answer? Don’t lie to me. Where were you?”
“I was finishing up that big account I told you about. Stop hitting me!” I was hysterical by this time. Yelling, screaming. He still had a hold of my hair.
“Shut your mouth with all that screaming, Alicia. Do you want the neighbors to hear? This is between you and me. You hear me?” That was when I noticed that he’d never even raised his voice. I suppose that in and of itself is not surprising, because he is not one for yelling, but I thought that someone upset enough to hit another person might also be upset enough to yell. I also noticed that I didn’t care who heard me. Maybe someone would help get this crazy man off of me.
“Why didn’t you call me when you knew you were going to be working late?” He wasn’t ready to forgive me yet. The verdict had come in, and in his mind, I had not been at work. He really thought I was messing around on him. I don’t know what hurt more, the accusations or the beating he was putting on me.
“It just slipped my mind. I told you when we were dating that sometimes we have to pull all-nighters during deadline time. Don’t you remember? I also mentioned before you left yesterday that I might be working late. I wasn’t out with another man. I promise, Avery. Please let go of my hair.” I was pleading with him. I had a migraine so intense it was blinding. Had even managed to say all of this in a quiet voice. I didn’t want to set him off again. Instinctively, I must have known it would get worse before it got better. At least he’d stopped hitting me.
When he finally released his grip, I realized we had moved from the entry hall through the living room and into our bedroom at the end of the hall.
“Alicia, I am upset with you right now. I can’t talk to you. Just take your clothes off and go to bed.” Quiet thunder was in his voice. I headed for the bathroom.
“Where do you think you are going?”
“To the bathroom to wash my face and brush my tee…”
“No. I said get in the bed and I mean right now.” He cut me off before I could even finish my sentence. I did as he said. I was too afraid not to. Never had I seen him like that, so my fear was genuine. The look on his face still sends shivers into my soul. I didn’t know who that stranger was standing in front of me who looked like Avery, but who certainly wasn’t acting like him. One thing was certain, I didn’t want to learn what other evil tricks he had waiting up his sleeve.
How he expected me to sleep, I have no idea. Of course, I couldn’t sleep. I was too busy crying. My head ached. My face stung.
“Stop shaking the bed and come over here.” Unnoticed he’d climbed in on his side of the bed. I jumped when he spoke to me.
“I’d rather not.” My back was to him as I said it. The shaking that he spoke of was my body trembling in fright and nervous anticipation of whatever else lay ahead.
“Alicia, I’m not going to hurt you. Just let me hold you, all right?” Silence lingered between us like bad breath. “Come on, baby,” his voice growing softer with each word. I went to him, reacting with fear and uncertainty. He rolled me over and pulled me closer to him, laying my head on his chest. I cringed when I felt him caressing the back of my head and down my back. His touch made my skin crawl.
“Tell me what happened last night.”
About the author
Tumika Patrice Cain is an award-winning author, media personality and publisher whose works centers around uplifting, encouraging and empowering others to live the abundant life. She is also an accomplished poet; founder of the Say What?? Book Club; and host of the internet radio shows Living Abundantly with Tumika Patrice Cain, In The Spotlight, and Say What?? Author Spotlights. In addition, she is a respected book reviewer and columnist for PEN’Ashe Magazine, a contributing writer for BLOG and Believe Magazines, and editor for two smaller publishing companies.
A champion for indie authors, she works tirelessly to level the playing field to bring exposure to those authors who excel at their craft, but whose marketing budgets are limited. Inkscriptions, her publishing company, offers a myriad of book publishing services. Living by the motto of each one reach one, each one teach one, Tumika shares her passion for purpose and for life with all who cross her path.
She is the 2013 recipient of a Spoken Word Billboard award for her debut novel, Season of Change (December 2012), a novel that has since been picked up by Shan Presents and will be re-released as When a Man Loves a Woman – A Season of Change in December 2015. To her publishing credit, she is also the author of After the Rain…a Poetry Collective (March 2014) and The Heart of a Woman (August 2015). Tumika’s works have been published in numerous magazines, anthologies, newsletters and periodicals.