Kimberla Lawson Roby

Kimberla Lawson Roby
A Taste Of Reality

Interviewed by: Lauretta Pierce
December 2, 2002

1. Who is Kimberla Lawson Roby?

Kimberla Lawson Roby is someone who was raised to have strong faith in God and high confidence in myself. My grandmother raised my mom that way and my mom did the same with me. She spent years telling me that I could do anything.

2. What inspired you to write “A Taste Of Reality?”

I was inspired because I know firsthand what it is like to be passed over for a promotion, simply because you are black. Racial discrimination is very humiliating and unfortunately, still very much alive today.

3. How did you come about the title “A Taste Of Reality?”

I thought about the fact that even if you do all the right things to be successful, meaning going to college and grad school, graduating with honors, and being a high performer on the job, sometimes you don't receive your "taste of reality", regarding equality, until you are passed over for a promotion unfairly.

4. How long did it take you to write “A Taste Of Reality?”

The first draft took about two months and then of course there was the revision/editing process after that.

5. What inspired you to write a novel about an African American women going through a divorce while dealing with racism at her work place?

I wanted to examine and portray what it would be like, dealing with two extremely emotional issues simultaneously and then show what any woman might do to overcome them.

6. How did you come about Anise’s character?

I wanted to create an African-American woman who was strong, independent and intelligent. I wanted to create someone who thousands of African-American women aspire to be.

7. How did you come about David and Frank’s characters?

I created David because I'm always amazed at how some African-Americans don't want to be African-American and truly wish they were white. In terms of Frank, I've met a few men like him over the years, so it was very easy to create him as well.

8. How did you come about Lorna and Jim situation?

When writing every book, I use my imagination and play the "what-if" game. But in reality, there are a great number of women who are being sexually harassed on a daily basis. The sad part is that some of them are too afraid to say or do anything about it because they don't want to lose their jobs.

9. How long have you been writing?

I began writing my first novel in April 1995, so I've been writing now for just over 7 1/2 years.

10. How many novels have you written?


11. What type of atmosphere do you require to write?

During the fall and winter months, I enjoy writing on my desktop computer in my home office, but in the spring and summer, I love taking my laptop out to our attached screened gazebo. Either way, I am most comfortable writing when the environment is peaceful and distraction-free.

12. Are you current working on another novel?

Yes, I am working on a sequel to CASTING THE FIRST STONE.

13. What message would you like readers to receive from reading “A Taste Of Reality

Throughout our lives, there will be many obstacles and disappointments, but if we believe in God, in ourselves, and work diligently to be the best that we can be, we will always find strength to overcome anything. I recently heard T.D. Jakes say that every setback in life is a set-up for a comeback, and I'm hoping A TASTE OF REALITY will encourage readers to view discrimination in the workplace in the same regard.