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African-American Voices
Eric Pete

What inspired you to write your first book?

My wife's prodding and finally giving in to the stories in my head. It was near the end of 1999 and I took the whole "turn of the century" theme to heart as a time to put thought into action.

Who or what has influenced your writing?

In terms of authors that finally influenced me to pick up the pen, I'd have to attribute that to Eric Jerome Dickey and BeBe Moore Campbell. In terms of my style of writing, I'm influenced equally by books and film. As a child, I grew up being an avid reader and a notorious night owl-watching such movies such as In the Heat of the Night, The Defiant Ones, and To Sir With Love among others.

How has your environment/upbringing influenced your writing?

I think the diversity of characters in my writing are reflective of my living in different locales and my interaction with people in those places even if just on a subconscious level.

What books have most influenced your life most?

The Autobiography of Malcolm X probably influenced me the most as a human being as well as a writer. As a child, I was big on unsolved mysteries-Loch Ness, UFOs, Bigfoot. I still love solving mysteries.

What book are you reading now?

Nothing as I'm working on deadline. Just various magazines. Have to keep my mind active.

What advice would you give to writers just starting out?

First and foremost, have fun and don't be afraid to follow the voices in your head. If you wish to be a published author, start with a strong story and be sure to learn the business. Stay positive in spite of what obstacles you may face.

If you could leave your readers with one legacy, what would you want it to be?

Hmm. Tough one. That I succeeded in telling entertaining, timeless...and human stories that continue to resonate with readers of all ages. Oh. And that I lived up to my motto..."Can't stop. Won't stop. Believe that."

What are you working on now?

Blow Your Mind, my novel for 2007.


African-American Voices
Martin Luther king, Jr.

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