Q: The-B-Life loves everything you’re doing and have done from the high-profile magazine jobs, to writing books, and serving as a TV correspondent, etc. etc.! Have you had that OMG moment when you realized you'd finally “made it”?
A: My OMG moment would have to be about a month after my Olay commercial went national. People started recognizing me wherever I went, and actually making the connection between me as a beauty expert and as an author!
Actually, just the other day I had an OMG moment...I was shopping at H&M, and a teenage girl recognized me from my beauty blog, "Shake Your Beauty." We chatted about microdermabrasion kits for twenty minutes.
Q: What have been your biggest personal and professional accomplishments up to this point?
A: There have been a few! My biggest personal accomplishment has been my marriage...ladies, it's NOT easy! But if you treat your relationship with care and dedication, marriage can be a fabulous thing. My biggest personal accomplishments are my books...I've always wanted to be a successful author, and now I can finally say that I am.
Q: How has being a woman of color affected your career?
A: In my eight-year career as a beauty editor at magazines like Elle, Lucky, Glamour and Teen People, I was usually the only black beauty editor at a mainstream magazine (ie, at events, the only other brown editors were from Essence or, for a time, Honey). It was definitely challenging, because clearly the standard of beauty in America is still a white woman, so I came
up against a lot of walls trying to expand that notion. But the industry is changing so much...and now, it's practically the norm to discuss different skin tones and hair types in beauty articles. When I started back in 1998, that wasn't the case.
Q: We know you love “Sex in the City” (which we hear has been green lit for the big screen), so do you agree with Samantha…”Can you really have it all?” If so, what is your recipe for success? If not, which areas of your life could use a little more attention?
A: I think you can have it all...but the truth is, something always suffers a bit. I think we put unfair pressure on ourselves to juggle, juggle, juggle and be super-everything, which sets us up for failure and untold stress! I think it's all about prioritizing...sometimes family is more important. Sometimes work needs the most attention. The answer to having it all is knowing that you're not a superwoman...and not being afraid to ask for help.
That said, I don't have kids. Ask me this question in two years.
Q: If you were developing an autobiographical movie based on your life, which actress would you cast in the lead role, and why?
A: Kerry Washington! I think she's just impossibly glamorous.
Q: This is fun…put together the cast for the other key people in your life (your hubby, BFF, etc.).
A: Hmmm...my husband is delicious Dominican hunk, so maybe Benjamin Bratt?
Q: Give us your top 3 indulgences and top 3 bad habits (they can overlap).
A: My top 3 indulgences/bad habits are:
* Ice cream...I have a scoop a day.
* MTV reality shows...my DVR is littered with episodes of The Hills, Laguna
Beach, My Super Sweet 16 and DanceLife.
* Biting my nails.
Q: If you had to give one last beauty recommendation to the world, what would it be and why?
A: Buy SHU UEMURA's EYELASH CURLER: Every celeb makeup artist uses this curler, and for good reason—it makes your lashes pop like you wouldn’t believe. Layer on a coat of volumizing black mascara like Maybelline Great Lash, and you'll look like Diana Ross circa Mahogany...which is a very good thing.
Q: What is your personal definition of success?
A: I think success is all about personal fulfillment...no matter what you do in life, if it makes you feel excited to wake up each morning, then you're doing something right!
Q: We know you’re a busy gal, so what’s next?
A: I'm so excited about my juicy new teen series, IT CHICKS (Hyperion/Disney, April 07) about a group of New York City performing arts school kids. It's the first of it's kind...there's never been a sort of upscale, chick-lit "lite" teen series for multi-cultural girls. And the story is positively addictive...it's actually a guilty pleasure for adults, too! The first book in the series just hit bookstores in April, and I'm hard at work on the second one. Look out for it in 2008!
Q: Almost done…The-B-Life is a new concept for most. When you heard it for the first time, what did it mean to you? If you had to “B” (adjective) anything, what would you be and why?
A: It's corny, but I'd have to pick: B happy!
The-B-Life Spotlight...Tia Williams!
It's only fitting that we chose Tia Williams for our first B-Life Spotlight Q&A! She has lived the fab-life as a magazine editor and is the epitome of NYC-chic. Just when we thought Tia was living the "good life", it turned great. She's currently living out her childhood dreams as a highly-celebrated author. We're trying to be like you Tia, so talk to us...
Click here to check out Tia's latest book!
Ps. For the month of April, my book club is reading Tia's first novel, The Accidental Diva (thanks Morgan). It's sinfully entertaining, and makes me wish for a few extra stops on my subway ride! Check it out.