Author Chat with Akela Renae

Q1: Tell us a little about yourself and how you came to write this book?

I have always wanted to be a writer since I was a child. As I describe below, this book idea came to me in the form a dream several years ago. It wasn’t until the end of 2013 that I decided to flush it out and fully develop the story line. And that is a decision that I am very happy with.

Q2: How did you come up with the title for the book?

After talking with a friend about my experiences with failed relationships, she asked me, “Kela, do you have baggage?” I thought about it for a good little while, I concluded to her that I did not have baggage. Knowing full well that we ALL have baggage. However, it was the question about baggage that lead me to play around with the title of this book. I went from Lost and Found Baggage, to Baggage Fees and eventually ended up with The Cost of Baggage. The title pretty much sums up the book.

With everything we experience, there is a cost associated with it. As it is written in the summary, will the cost of baggage be what Monique needs to make a change in her life? You have to read the book to find out.

Q3: Who should read your book?

Everyone should read The Cost of Baggage. Everyone has relationship baggage be it romantic or otherwise, so this story-line is something that everyone could relate to. With that being said, there is a certain group that would enjoy this book more than others – my sisters. All women between the ages of 18-60 that have learned a thing or two about this thing we call life. It is this group that has identified with the book thus far. This is the group that has created mini – book clubs to discuss how they see themselves in Monique, Lena and Dr. Shores. Many people have described the book as real-life and relatable.

Q4: What inspired you to write the book?

This book started as a dream. Many nights I have vivid dreams that are so full of color and detailed. These are the stories that they need to be told. The Cost of Baggage started as a dream. It was the airport scene of the book that awakened me in the middle of the night and caused me to pull out the Macintosh and start writing. Initially, I wrote less than 1,500 words. Unfortunately, I put it away for two years. It wasn’t until I put another project away, that I decided to revisit this one. Once I pulled it back out, the story flowed.

Q5: Do you have any advice for other writers?

This was a long process, but at the end of it, I can say – “Hey, I am a published author!”. Be steadfast to accomplish the goals that you have set out for yourself. When you get your finished product, you will be well pleased.

Q6: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

In 10 years, I would want to have published 10 books crisscrossing various genres. It is my plan to use this as a platform to be a motivational speaker and travel the world. This first book is the stepping stone to get me the next level. Several people have asked me about Monique and Mason and what happens with their characters. There is no answer to that just yet – the characters write their own story. If they come together, there will be a sequel.

Connect with Akela Renae at

About Tieshena Davis, Publishing Pro

Tieshena Davis helps impact-driven visionaries turn their knowledge into well written bestselling books and lucrative brands. Are you looking for a publisher or strategy consultant? Email

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