Diana L. Williams has wanted to be a writer since she was a child.
“From there, I’ve always had this big imagination,” she said.
Her new book, “Alora Factor: Invasion of the Realm Jumpers,” is the first in what she plans to be a five-part series of Science Fiction and magical realism. She said this book focuses on three main characters and their family relations and is “a celebration of women.”
Williams said she writes the way the world is, such as her book is set in Hampton, Virginia, where she grew up, and where the population is 50 percent Black. Her books will reflect who lives in an area.
Her inspiration for the “Alora Factor” series came from doing research in a library for the “BackStory: The American History” podcast at UVA. In her research for an episode of the podcast, she was looking at information about Reconstruction after the American Civil War. She found a list of Seminole negros and wrote their names down for future reference. The names appear as names of characters in the series.
In 2018, the film “Black Panther” came out with two Black characters who acquire powers. She said the film gave her confidence that there was something to her book series idea.
“I wanted a black female superhero,” Williams said. So she created one.
Williams said she wrote the outline for her new book in 2019 and channeled time during the COVID-19 pandemic to write the book. The second book in the series will be published in a couple weeks.
Her full-time day job is as Director of Communications for the Center of Collaborative Education. She previously worked at UVA in communications for 15 years. She and her husband, Clarence Williams III, have lived in the Valley for 27 years, including the last 11 years in Waynesboro, where she serves on the Waynesboro School Board. The couple has two adult sons.
Williams has written under the pen name D.L. Williams but is thinking about using her real name now.
She has two other books coming out soon, and she is working on a second series of books which will be pure fantasy, including goblins and elves.
“For the most part, I like to stick to Science Fiction and young adult,” she said of her writing. She gets inspirations for her writing from “what if” scenarios in life and from items she reads.
Her goal is to release two books each year, including one book as part of a series.
“It’s not that hard to be inclusive,” Williams said of her message for readers and writers.
Williams will be at New Dominion Bookshop in Charlottesville on Friday, June 16, at 7 p.m. for an in-person reading from her book.