28-year-old writer, Jessica Contessa Dent, also known as Contessa Dee, launched a blog a while back titled, Countess’ Pen. It was birthed out of the need for Dent to not feel suppressed anymore.
Dent’s goal is to encourage as many as she can to show them they can break free from their secrets and their untold stories that hold them hostage.
“Growing up, I was trained to feel like my voice didn’t matter. I spent years in pinned up frustration and other countless deleted blogs, and Countess’ Pen was the statement to prove that I was fed up with not speaking up,” Dent says.
Dent is originally from Chicago, Illinois, but due to adversity and divine intervention, she grew up in Northern Indiana.
She grew up in an unstable environment, which ultimately led her to living in foster care.
This is also what led to her career in writing.
“The only thing you should ever settle for is accepting the best parts of yourself that make you, you.”
Jar: I read on Countess’ Pen that you started out writing poetry and short stories. What inspired you to start out in poetry and short stories, and who are some of your favorite authors that have inspired some of your work?
Dent: Back then I read a lot of books, mainly mysteries and supernatural themed. I would read Stephen King a lot, and I did love Mary Alice Monroe. Today it’s so hard to have a favorite, there’s so much good stuff out there. My writing has evolved. I did start writing poetry and short stories, and now I am working on a few books and even screenplays. I don’t have my personal favorites of my work; I hate it all after I am done. (laughs) But that’s just me being too critical.
Jar: I love the mission of your website, “Countess’ Pen’s purpose is to encourage and connect people through the way of storytelling and social issues. A story shared is a freedom claimed.” What are some challenges you have faced in your life that may have seemed overbearing, and how did you overcome those challenges? How does your writing help you with that?
Dent: I enjoy creating worlds with the building blocks of a simple word. I grew up in a very unstable and abusive home as well as foster care. Writing became where I would go tell all that was happening to me. Pen and paper became what I needed to express what was in me. I overcame a lot of situations by filling pages of notebooks. God placed writing in me. Me picking up a pen wasn’t by accident.
Jar: I know there are many writers, bloggers, business owners, etc., who are just starting out that are afraid to share their work with the world. I was one of them! What are some tips or a piece of advice you can give for anyone who has that fear just starting out?
Dent: For those who have fear of sharing their writing, whether you’re just starting or a vet, the advice that I can offer to anyone is, don’t think, just do it, immediately! I was afraid as well. I grew up trained to believe that my voice didn’t matter. Writing became my way of speaking because it is a way a speaking. Don’t be afraid to share your writing because there is someone out there needing to hear what it is that you have to say. Put that fear aside because there is someone out there who needs you, and you could literally save their life.
Jar: What are some of the feedback you receive from your work?
Dent: People have told me that they love my writing and that it’s even made them cry because they could relate. I never know the effect that my writing has on people, but they tell me good things. (laughs)
Jar: What type of services will you offer in the future instead of just having an online platform to reach out to everyone?
Dent: Because I believe so deeply in people sharing their stories, I will provide services in the future that will help people write their book or start their blog. Everyone has a story that needs to be shared, and there are plenty lives that need to be saved. I have many plans for the future that involve storytelling.
Countess’ Pen will soon be featuring authors and other writers on her website in the future.
“I am looking to open my platform up to anyone who needs to be heard,” Dent says.