The book has been described as “powerful” and “inspirational.” Da Costa has now released a collection of emojis called “Beautymojis” based on the book, which are available through the Apple App Store. ByBlacks.com had a chance to catch up with da Costa to find out more about her book and Beautymojis.
How does writing empower you?
The thing about writing is that when you write the sky’s the limit. You can write about everything and anything. It’s your words and sometimes they come from the heart, sometimes you’re just making sentences but you write anything and say what you want to say and that’s where the empowerment comes from.
Of all the books you’ve written, which would you say is your favourite or are most proud of?
Oh no! I could never pick a favourite, that’s too hard. I enjoy writing and I love what I do so whenever I get positive feedback that just inspires me to write more books. It’s always really good to get good feedback because sometimes you doubt yourself, but when you hear that someone enjoys your book it lets you know you’re doing something right. Even before I started writing books I was a freelance magazine writer and sometimes I would think to myself “who would even want to read my article?” Sometimes you don’t see yourself in that way or you don’t think you’re good enough.
The Beautymojis are based on your book, “I am Beautiful: When I Look at Me, I See…” What can you tell us about the book?
I used to volunteer with young girls and they often struggled with their self-esteem and confidence because of their looks, or their hair. I also got it from looking at the world, at black girls and at black in general because I can only speak from that standpoint. There’s a lot of issues going on with young girls so that was an influence to write the book, to encourage them, inspire them and empower them. To let them know it’s okay not to look like this or have “this” type of hair based on what somebody else has. That’s where that came from and that’s also the message of the book; it’s okay to be yourself and love yourself the way you are. Somebody has to give little black girls a voice to say the things they need to say but might be afraid to on their own.
What’s something you think people need to understand about beauty?
There’s no clear cut or ideal version of beauty despite what Western media pushes. I think that’s one of the problems young girls have because they have these images of what beauty is supposed to look like with the long, blonde hair and blue eyes and they get confused. They think that’s what beauty is and that’s what they’re supposed to look like so they can be confused about who they really are and what’s expected of them
You can find “I am Beautiful: When I Look at Me, I See…” as well as Da Costa’s other books on her website. Simone’s blog also offers marketing, advertising and promoting for book, eBook authors, publishers, self-publishers and anyone interested in writing.