Racquel Brown Gaston – A Product of Falmouth, Trelawny
I remember her as the little daughter of my friend Glen (Pecke) Brown and Nicoline (Nicky) Ellis. Her father was one of the most well known Falmouthians. He was a sprinter who had won the title of “fastest man in the parish,” by winning the now defunct Trelawny Youth Clubs Athletics Championships in the late 1970’s. Later on, the late Pecke Brown went on to win several football titles as coach of Village United, before he passed away.
Racquel grew up in Falmouth, attending Miss Stevenson’s (Basic) School. At 4, she left for Maroon Town to live with Pecke’s mother (her grandmother). She then attended Chatsworth All Age School. At age 10, she passed the Common Entrance and attended Mt. Alvernia High. She spent her summers and other holidays between 5 Georges Street and 14 Peel Street (popularly known as “Fourteen”).
Migrating to the USA
At age 14, Racquel left Jamaica to live in the tough neighborhood of Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York with her mom.
While in Brooklyn, she went to Boys and Girls High School and won a scholarship to Boston University. From there, she studied at the L’university de Grenoble in Grenoble, France as an international exchange student. Racquel came back to BU and after graduating, went directly to the University of Miami School of Law. She visited Brooklyn Law School in her final year. Racquel graduated law school and passed the NY Bar and was sworn in as an attorney at age 27.
Racquel Brown Gaston has played many roles in life: lawyer, law professor, Dean of Students – University of the District of Columbia, UN Ambassador, author and now screenwriter. She is also a motivational speaker, whose speeches are aimed mainly targeted at single parents, youth, the incarcerated and entrepreneurs.
Inspiration For Her First Book
It was while working as a professor at Medgar Evers College of the City University of New York, that she got the inspiration for her book. One day, a student walked into her office and as customary she inquired into his life to learn more about him. To her amazement, he revealed his profession as a notorious drug dealer. Intrigued by his dark side, she interviewed him for couple of years. The childhood days of the protagonist in her novel, Deadly Instincts, was based on the true life experiences of that student.
From an early age, to escape the tough neighborhood in which she grew, she developed a love for writing. It worked to take herself away from the reality into her own perfect world.
Racquel decided to write on the prompting of her husband who spotted her talent. Over ten years ago, he challenged her and said if she wrote just one novel he would leave her alone. She did, and her first attempt was a crime novel called Deadly Instincts, which she dedicated to her late father.
The thriller, Deadly Instincts, was first released in 2009, even though she started writing it in 2004. The crime novel was pulled from the shelf for re-editing, was revamped and re-released in 2012. and its success prompted an updated edition. Today, Deadly Instincts is on its way to the revered Ney York Times Best Seller List, but it was not an easy road. Buy Deadly Instincts in Ebook format for only $5.99 or buy on Amazon.
The Struggle for “Deadly Instincts”
Racquel: I originally started in 2004 but with all the self doubt and shopping it here and there and rejections here and there, I went dormant.
Eventually, the Holy Spirit reminded me who and whose I was, and I got up fighting. I am still fighting. I went on book tours across America and endless promotions but without the backing of deep pockets, and the tainted myths of independent publishing, all seemed futile. I go toe to toe with the major publishing houses to prove that I too can do it.
It has been very difficult and painful, but legions of angels are still carrying me toward the victory line. See, I didn’t fit the 3 criteria for a book deal-celebrity, 22000 copies sold or movie deal. I used my business attorney skills to create my publishing company.
I built lasting relationships as I have now mastered the industry inside out, so much that I am launching my publishing company next month to take on authors. I now have a movie deal and heading to best seller. It has not been easy.
It’s not easy going up against giants. It hasn’t been easy yielding support from my own, but that’s because I had to prove myself. With grace and favor, light is being shed on Deadly Instincts, and proof that hope is the most powerful weapon still lingers near.
Deadly Instincts – Amazon Customer Review
Deadly Instincts now has a perfect 5-star rating on Amazon.com, Check out just one of the reviews below:
Deadly Instincts is fantastic!!! It is a gripping, fast-paced novel that is part crime story, part mystery, part love story and all around engrossing. Rarely has a book drawn me in so quickly. The graphic realism of the dialogue painted a brutish, but realistic view of life on the mean streets of NYC. I felt like I was right back in Bed-Stuy walking the streets, avoiding trouble, but it found me anyway. As soon as I finished with the book, I found myself longing for another written by Racquel. I completely understand that quality takes time, but I hope to read many more books by this author sooner rather than later.
Other Current Projects
Racquel Brown Gaston is always reaching for the stars and she is currently working on the movie adaptation of Deadly Instincts as well as researching for her second screenplay.
Racquel: When I was a little girl, I often times walked by the police station, library and “poor house.” I spoke to the poor house and I said one day I will come back and I will build for you a state of the art complex for you to call home.
I promised myself I will return to rural Jamaica and give resources toward education and help in shedding light, hope to those who are where I was. Jamaica is my heart and if it takes getting to the Best Seller’s List to help her the way I want to help her, then by the grace of God, the NY Times Best Seller’s List will have a Jamaican on it.
Some of the greatest Olympians came from Trelawny, of which we are mighty proud, I hope to be such an author from Trelawny, who too can inspire her island home. I can start by asking my countrymen to tune into my Blog Tuesdays and liking my author page on Facebook, Racquel Brown Gaston the Author.
Where to Buy Deadly Instincts
By Brian Elliot via Falmouth News