New Book Introduction: Stripper Pole To Heaven

Book Introduction: Stripper Pole To Heaven

In these hard times, most of us want to believe in something; a higher power, or maybe even more in ourselves. But some of us have to learn the hard way, that getting money isn't the answer to everything....

When Lisette Jones transforms herself into "Golden" and hits the stage as a stripper, it's all or nothing---a dedication that's earning her top dollar at Club Bare. With the untimely death of her ex, it's a profession that chose her, so Lisette's determined to make it work, even if it means chasing dollars to maintain the comfortable lifestyle that she and her teenaged daughter are accustomed to.

Being in the spotlight turns out to be downright addictive, but it doesn't help to fill the void of losing loved ones. Meet the possible solution in Cynthia, her scripture-quoting, bible-toting best friend. It's because of an invite from her that Lisette stumbles upon just the comfort she's been seeking in a higher power. Comforted, yes. Cured of all fears of remaining single and becoming possibly broke? No. For Lisette it's all about the here and now and to prevent getting stuck with nothing she's down for juggling everything; her closeted profession, giving love another try and her spiritual walk. Unfortunately---- it's a decision that she may have to pay the ultimate price tag for.


Cynthia Miller may be "scripture quoting and bible toting," but her life is far from perfect. When she walks through the doors of Target Marketing she's a high-ranking company manager, but just past the doorstop of her apartment, her abusive husband Clyde is the one calling all of the shots. Being both the ideal wife and consummate office exec is demanding, but the balancing act is a goal that Cynthia has set for herself; from shedding her homely image with what she believes will be a life-changing makeover, to indulging in her husband's twisted sexual fantasies nothing's off limits. But what will it take for her to realize that the only makeover she ever needed was the one on the inside?

Visit the Main Website: (Prologue & Sample Chapter included)

Previous Titles: Shoes On the Otha’ Foot, A Pair Like No Otha – Harper Torch Publishing

CONTACT:  Author Hunter Hayes by E-mail at

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Intimate Conversation with Joyce Fields

Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, Joyce Fields has been in love with reading and writing virtually all her life. Joyce coupled her love of writing with her desire to help people improve their lives, resulting in her authoring six books. Here, she discusses one: The Best Way to Keep a Man is to Let Him Go (among other things).

In The Best Way to Keep a Man is to Let Him Go (among other things), Joyce shares her experiences and observations, based on a 53-year relationship (43 years of marriage) with the same man--and the fire is STILL hot, hot, hot! Based on these experiences and observations, she thinks that 80% of the success of a relationship rests on the shoulders of the woman. The book explains why. Joyce has included 21 pages of her own recipes at the end of this 64-page book. The preview and rave reviews are accessible at the Web site that she shares with her sister, Anita Jones, who is also an author.

What inspired you to write this story?
I was inspired to write this story because so many females seem to be in love with love and don't understand that, as young girls, many of us dream and talk of the day when we will be married and have kids, but boys don't do this. Young men don't dream of becoming husbands and fathers. We have to show them that the relationship is worth it.

What issues in today's society have you addressed in the book?
The high divorce/break-up rate could be lower if more females understood that men do not mature as quickly as we do. Women must find happiness within themselves; they cannot expect a man to make them happy. Men can enhance our happiness; they cannot create it.

What writers inspire you and why?
I am inspired by Dr. Maya Angelou and Dr. Wayne Dyer because they both speak to the spirit of the individual and inform us of the immense power that we hold due to our connection to God.

What did you hope to accomplish by writing this particular story?
Based on the reviews, this book is accomplishing what I hoped it would: to give females some tips on building and maintaining a healthy relationship with their man. To get the ladies to understand that they cannot expect to make hefty withdrawals if they have not made hefty deposits into the health and peacefulness of their relationship with their man.

Share with us your latest news, awards or upcoming book releases.
I have written and released five other books. The previews and reviews for all of them are available at the Web site. The non-fiction titles are: Mother's Dozen: An Easy Recipe for Raising GREAT Kids! This book is also available in Spanish. The Spanish title is Madre Docena: iUna Receta Facil Para Criar a Ninos Magnificos!, THE VISION: Telling Kids That They Can Make the World a Better Place, and Line of Serenity. One children's fiction title: Jette Black and Her Seven Friends.

Web site:

Meet Leadership Development expert, Dr. Daryl D. Green

Our lives continue to unravel as things we believe in disintegrate before our eyes. Institutions are failing. Personal conduct is at an all time low. Wall Street continues to prosper as Main Street bears the financial hardship for our country. What is needed, however, is a different kind of leader during these times of uncertainty.

Leadership Development expert, Dr. Daryl D. Green, lectures and writes on contemporary issues impacting individuals, businesses, and societies across the nation. With over 20 years of management experience, Dr. Green is noted and quoted by USA Today, Ebony Magazine, Black Pearls Magazine, Associated Press, NBC's Alive at Five, Answerline, American Urban Radio, and BET's Buy the Book. His FamilyVision column, syndicated through Newspaper Publishers Association, has reached over 200 newspapers and more than 15 million readers across the country.

Dr. Green
is the author of several books, including Breaking Organizational Ties, My Cup Runneth Over, and the acclaimed Awakening the Talents Within. He has published over 100 articles on the subjects of decision-making and leadership, which have been syndicated to thousands of websites.

As a social advocate, Dr. Green co-founded the Greater East Pasco Achievement Program, a nonprofit tutorial service, which assisted over a hundred students in Washington State. He received the DOE Community Service Award and the Pasco Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award for this effort.

Dr. Green is the former Vice President of the Oak Ridge Chapter of Blacks in Government (BIG) in Tennessee and a BIG lifetime member. One Tennessee paper called him a "20th Century Renaissance Man" because he is a manager, entrepreneur, artist, marketer, poet, producer, personal coach, professor, and author.  As an inspiring professor and renowned lecturer, Dr. Green teaches management, marketing, strategic planning, and entrepreneurship at Lincoln Memorial University and Knoxville College. In 2009, the Lane College Black Executive Exchange Program presented him with an "Outstanding Leadership Award."

Dr. Green has served as a keynote speaker, panelist,and presenter at the University of Tennessee, Kentucky Sate University, Federally Employed Women Training Conference, Blacks in Government National Training Conference and the Society for Advancement of Management Conference, among others.

Dr. Green holds a doctorate in Strategic Leadership from Regent University, an M.A. in organizational management from Tusculum College, and a B.S, in Engineering from Southern University. He is a member of the Academy of Strategic Management.

Connect with Dr. Daryl Green author, lecturer, and leadership coach

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Black Professionals Leveraging Corporate Knowledge

Black Professionals Leveraging Corporate Knowledge
for Today’s College Graduates

Dr. Daryl Green

Are you prepared for tomorrow’s future challenges? Do you know how to take advantage of future job opportunities? As the financial crisis continues and the US labor market continues to weaken, many college students are wondering how they will survive these difficult times. With the fierce competition for limited jobs, they wonder if they will be able to land a good job in the marketplace.

I understand and see it. Hope isn’t lost. As a professor, I frequently find myself encouraging students to keep hope and plan for their career aspirations. The mistake is that many in my generation believed that a company was looking out for their career development. They were not! Black professionals can share their experiences with young college students. In fact, today’s job market requires that college students develop their own personal strategy for employment. This article explores how black professionals can assist college graduates with job strategies.

The Economic Picture
Economic troubles in our nation and abroad continue to create an unstable and unpredictable job market. Parents across this country tell their children “get a good education and you will get a good job.” However, in this economic rollercoaster, this is not always true. US manufacturing jobs continue to evaporate as global outsourcing becomes the norm for businesses that seek to increase their profits.

According to the Forrester Research, approximately 3.3 million U.S. jobs and $136 billion in wages could be moved overseas to countries like India or China by 2015. The industries potentially impacted include electronics, computer programming, telecommunications, banking, engineering, management consulting, and other highly skilled services. Therefore, many students are concerned about their future employment.

The University-Corporate Connections
Some universities understand how to connect with corporations in order to make their students more competitive. The economic picture has caused many organizations to reduce their presences on universities across the nation. To a shrewd executive, it probably doesn’t make sense to hire young graduates when the economic picture for the company may be uncertainty. According to some business estimates, employers are expected to cut 2.7 million jobs in 2009 (2 million were cut in 2008).

Additionally, every state is predicted to end the year with fewer jobs. Only 2 industry sectors expect to add more jobs, education and health & government. However, some companies feel their support to academic institutions make business sense since it demonstrates the organizations’ social responsibility to their communities. Furthermore, some universities have been too busy attempting to shore up their economic woes to pay attention to other organizations. Yet, there are some bright signs. Winston-Salem State University (WSSU), one of the 16 constituents of the University of North Carolina , continues to make a high commitment to furthering alliances with the public and private institutions.

BEEP has a historical record of over 40 years working in partnership with corporations, government agencies, non-profits, and other institutions where black executives serve as "Visiting Professors" at primarily black colleges. The university is an active member of the National Urban League’s Black Executive Exchange Program (BEEP). In March, WSSU invited several organizations to campus, including the Central Intelligence Agency, UPS, Department of Energy, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

LaMonica Singleton, WSSU Director of Career Services, understands the importance of students making a connection with corporate America : “Students can relate to individuals who have been where they are. Students can listen and relate to the professionals.” She further notes that students see positive role models and can see themselves personally in a different setting. Kevin Bryant, a WSSU junior from Goldsboro , North Carolina , sees the value in having professions coming to campus: “I think it’s important for students to broaden their horizons. Having this exposure is important.”

Bryant further adds that these professionals gave him a dose of reality in the fact of how the corporate world operates. However, the trends make it difficult for even college students to be optimistic. However, having a good plan can increase the odds for most students in landing a good job. Students should bee aware of opportunities and be prepared to act quickly on them. Derrick Craver, Vice President - South Zone Strategic Accounts for UPS, explains, “An education is the foundation [for opportunities].”

Bill Washington, Vice President, Strategic Account Sales for UPS, argues that having a plan is critical for taking advantage of opportunities: “In any area of life, it’s important to have a roadmap.” He encourages developing a 1 to 3 year plan to reach goals. Therefore, college students need to be proactive about landing a job.

The Path Forward
Although many students are feeling very pessimistic about future career opportunities, hope is not lost if people are prepared for the future. Black professionals can make a difference by sharing their knowledge. Wise students will listen. Throughout their schooling, most young people are shielded from the unpleasant realities of life. Today, students are bombarded with many obstacles. However, they can make a positive step in navigating these difficult economic times and landing their future jobs. Now is the perfect time to begin.

About the Columnist:
Dr. Daryl Green provides motivation, guidance, and training for leaders at critical ages and stages of their development. He has over 20 years of management experience and has been noted and quoted by USA Today, Ebony Magazine, Black Pearls Magazine Online and Associated Press. For more information, you can go to or

Dr. Daryl Green author, lecturer, and leadership coach

Website:;  Blog:
"Helping Emerging Leaders Gain the Competitive Advantage in the Future"

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Intimate Conversation with M. Ann Ricks

M. Ann’s upbringing in Elizabeth, NJ was quite structured. She is forever grateful to her parents for their prayers and close reign over her young life. Their seemingly ever-present influence and strong inducement for her to know God, attend church and participate in every possible youth auxiliary kept her from elements that would have swallowed her whole.

Although recognizing Christ’s importance during her youth, M. Ann didn’t consider Him as her “everything”. Writing was always a “hidden” love. When she resolved to reconnect with the Master, the aspiration to write was unearthed and she became confident that it was her gift. As her need to know God on a personal level increased, her desire to write became stronger and strangely, to her surprise, a need. After receiving the needed confirmation from the Lord, she arrived at the conclusion that writing is the path that God has placed her on. She is determined to tell the world how wonderfully awesome Jesus Christ is and can be in our lives if we just allow Him to be. She is honored to be used by God to spread His message with the stories she creates with the leading of the Holy Spirit, knowing that He will provide her with the words that will draw all men to Him.

M. Ann is a graduate of Rider University and lives in Bear, Delaware with her loving husband and two handsome sons. She is also the author of The Son and has just completed her third novel, THE BLOOD DONE SIGNED MY NAME.

Awesome Wonder: The Gift of Remembrance
Awesome Wonder, is a Christian Fiction novel that takes a look at the duplicity of the “church” through the eyes of the heroine, Paige Covington as it brings to light the hypocritical stigma that has attached itself to the “church”, specifically the African American church.

Many people are looking for answers and believe they can find those answer in the church. Unfortunately, the failure of those who "talk the talk" to "walk the walk" has kept many from a true relationship with Jesus Christ. In many instances, the people that we aspire to be or hold in high regard because of their position in the church or “supposed” knowledge, disappoint, and we find that they are not the Christians that we thought they were. Unfortunately, this may result in the babes in Christ that now feel misled, to retreat from Christ with the misconception that all Christians are bogus and that Christianity is a sham. Awesome Wonder tells an honest, triumphant and relatable story of how God never stops loving his child as the Holy Spirit speaks to us to remind us of His unending and unfailing love. It confirms that the relationship between God and man is what is most important and that man should not be used as a barometer for Godliness and holiness.

Paige Covington knows there's a God and had accepted Christ as a young girl but witnessing hypocrisy and un-Christ-like behavior by the people in her church and family has caused too much pain resulting in her turning back on the love of Jesus. Memories from her youth begin invading her psyche and to make matters worse, she begins to hear a voice. The voice sounds familiar and tells her things as those memories and truths are exhumed. Hurt, confused but searching for answers, she decides that too much has happened. There have been too many disappointments and too many lies. Key people in her life have made it clear that there doesn’t seem to be any honor in being “Christ-like”. She hasn’t any idea that she is chosen as all children of God are. Will Paige allow the word that has been hidden in her heart provide the answers to all of her questions and give her the peace she so desires?

BPM: What was your primary quest in publishing this book?
Awesome Wonder is a novel that I believe that I had to write because people need to know, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!”Matt. 7:21-23.

Every other day we are hearing about a “fallen” man of God or “so-called” people of God spewing scripture and then living a lifestyle that is not honoring God behind closed doors. People are missing God because they haven’t seen Him in the people that are supposed to know Him. Now more than ever, true believers need to be walking epistles of the Lord Jesus Christ and live holy. It is up to us, true believers, to be the real example of the love of Jesus Christ. We can’t shout Hallelujah in church one minute and then curse someone out right after service. Many are saying that Christians are phony and fake because of what they see.

Believers and true followers of Christ have to understand their responsibility to live a life that is Christ-like. Someone who is unsaved or unfortunately on their way to hell may be depending on not what we say but how we live. We don’t want to cause anyone to fall because of our misdoings but day in and day out the curtain is being pulled back to show the ugliness of the “pretenders” of Christianity. Believers have been called to reconcile others to Christ and the only way we can do this is to live a life that is exemplary of the God in us. We can’t let traditions or religion dictate to us. The world is watching and we should be the “ people” that right the ship and point them in the direction toward Christ! Many realize that there is a void in their lives and are trying everything but God to fill it; just like Paige. The world is full of Paige Covingtons. A career, possessions or material things won’t make someone feel complete or whole. Only God can fill the void. I pray that when reading Awesome Wonder, the Holy Spirit begins to speak and the reader will dedicate or rededicate their life to Jesus Christ as that is my ultimate goal; augmenting the Kingdom of the Most High God.

BPM: Who did you write this book for? Why?
Awesome Wonder was written for the man or woman who has been hurt by “so called” Christians. I want to encourage someone through my novel, who has turned their back on Jesus because of the lack of true Godliness being exhibited by people in Christendom and in the body of Christ. That man or woman needs to know that regardless of what the world is displaying, God is in control and He does expect His people to walk, talk and behave just like Him. They need to know that there were hypocrites, liars and false prophets when Jesus walked the earth and Jesus warned us about them. If they existed over 2000 years ago, they will most assuredly exist today, even in our churches and families but we can’t let their behavior and their misrepresentation of God cause us to miss out on the truth and reality of Jesus Christ.

There are lives that are broken and people are walking around without hope, not believing that Christ is THE ANSWER because many in leadership have falsified Christ by the way they treat one another. There are lives that were eager to learn about Jesus Christ or were sold out for Christ but are now damaged, angered and even spiraling out of control because the people that they thought were the embodiment of Christ-like living have disappointed them, resulting in the disillusionment of who Christ is. People in Paige’s life seemed to be the epitome of Christianity but once she saw the truth behind the mask, she was spiritually injured like many people that I have known throughout my life.

Those wounds don’t heal easily and they begin to effect other aspect of one’s life especially when a real desire and zeal to learn more and be more like Christ is/was genuine. In Paige’s situation, it began to take a toll on her marriage, the relationship with her siblings and even her own child because at the core, something was missing. Awesome Wonder was written to tell the world that God has nothing to do with the foolishness one may see when watching the news but He is the God who is faithful. He is the God that sent His son, Jesus, to die for the world. He has nothing to do with crazy ministers that steal money from their parishioners or sleeps with the church secretary. God is LOVE and wants people to know Him in spirit and truth. Believe Jesus Christ through His word, not the world. “And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.”

BPM: Thousands of books are published each year. What sets your book apart from other books in your genre?
It seems, “ it is, what it is” has become the statement of the year. Christians for some reason have accepted and adopted that lingo and in doing so, have allowed all matter of un-Christ like behavior to find a home in the house of God and sadly enough, into their lives. No, It is NOT ,what it is.

The world is hurting because many don’t know Jesus; not really. They think they do but really don’t. Awesome Wonder sets itself apart from other Christian fictions novels because it allows the reader to understand that many seem to think and really believe that they are Christians because they are saying and doing all of the right things; giving to the poor, visiting the sick, etc. This is done while people are watching. Who are they behind closed doors? Sadly, there is a stark contrast. Many Christians can quote every scripture in the Bible but will not demonstrate the love God to their own wife or husband or even children. It is all a show? For many, it is. No one is talking or writing about how we are losing our African American youth or youth in general. As soon as they are able, they refuse come to church because of all that they’ve witnessed when growing up in the church. They have seen the lying and backbiting. They have heard adulterous innuendo and observed unforgiveness.

Paige, is an example of the generation that has decided that Jesus was not all He was cracked up to be. Awesome Wonder, like no other novel, shines the spot light on the damage that can be done when hypocrisy is allowed to run rampant in the house of God. People are no longer being fooled by the “Sunday Saint.” Those who think they want to know Christ are being wooed by the enemy because the church and leaders in the church can’t or won’t exemplify holiness. Whether anyone believes it or wants to write about it or not, people are falling away from Christ because of the misrepresentation of Christ in the church. Traditions and arguments when not “rightly dividing the word” has caused many to walk out on God.

Awesome Wonder looks at the church, it’s leaders, family and its impact on one’s life. Awesome Wonder stands alone as it Illustrates the damage religious insincerity and unChrist-like behavior can cause while interweaving the everyday realities of life. It is a novel that is daring those who love Christ to stand up and be real. It is welcoming those who want to know Christ or reconnect to Him but have been hurt to not to look at the world but look to Him. Awesome Wonder says blatantly what no one else in the genre has said, “It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.” Psalm 118:8.

BPM: What was the most powerful chapter or scene in the book for you?
The most powerful chapter in Awesome Wonder for me was when Paige finally receives revelation. After years of not going to church regularly, she decides to visit a friend’s church at her husband’s request. Believing she knew exactly what she would encounter because of her church history, she was initially pessimistic. To her surprise, she experiences more than she bargained for as the truth of God becomes abundantly clear to her. It’s as if the minister was waiting for her to visit so that he could speak directly to her and situation. The message communicated by the minister becomes all too personal and enlightenment commences.

The word of God is opened up to her like never before and this causes her to rethink her entire relationship with God. Had she any right to feel the way she did for so many years? Was she guilty of the same behaviors as so many others? Her issues with God become something that she must now contend with after hearing the truth. The truth begins to set her free but it would be up to her to accept the freedom. The scene is very emotional and it allows the reader to not only hear the word of God but also become a part of Paige’s psyche as she listens to what she may have already known but refused to hear from God. The Holy Spirit has been talking to many of us for years because we have accepted Christ but have fallen away. The word of God, when presented to us, has a way of making it all too clear that God has been there all time, whispering that He is just waiting for us to return to Him, our first love.

BPM: What is the best piece of advice you would give to an aspiring author?
Firstly, one must believe in their gift and talent. In this industry, it’s easy to say “forget it” or “this is not for me”. Know that rejection is part of the process but persistence is the key and faith unlocks the door. I have learned that what God has started in me, He is obligated to finish and I will be successful. If you believe that you have something to share that will change lives, then write and believe in yourself and gift that you have been given. Understand that it isn’t the money that will satisfy you. It will be the opportunity to speak into the lives of others and make a difference.

Lastly, be cognizant of the fact that everyone doesn’t have your best interests at heart. Many are in this industry, even Christian Fiction, to make a buck; plain and simple. Surround yourself with people that you can trust and who believe in you and your passion. Most importantly, don’t let anyone tell you, you can’t…. because you can!

M. Ann Ricks contact information:
With regard to M. Ann Ricks Literary Creations, LLC links…the one that may be used is simply my website address and it is:  M. Ann Ricks’ e-mail is:  and may posted as well should anyone desire to contact me for literary dialogues, speaking engagements or simply to dialogue about my novels.

M. Ann Ricks’ novels may be purchased via the website and or at any literary establishment, i.e.: Borders, various bookstores and the like.

Seduction of Mr. Bradley by Minnie Estelle Miller

The Seduction of Mr. Bradley by Minnie Estelle Miller is now offered  for sale on Kindle books.

Ted Grassley adopts and mentors Bill Bradley from high school to manhood. Ted is a CEO with deep pockets. Although married for forty years, he is bisexual. Bill, caught in the throws of Ted’s lifestyle, complicates matters when he meets Jina Cook, a straight, attractive young lady. The two feel an instant attraction toward each other but both try to pretend it is not happening. Finally, Jina makes the first move and Bill knows he can't live without this woman. Unfortunately, Bill has a big secret; he is bisexual and finds himself torn between Jina and Ted, his male lover and father figure. Deep inside Bill wants a regular life with a wife and children but guilt makes him think twice. This spontaneous and deeply gratifying tryst throws him off balance. What happens when Mr. Bradley reveals his bisexuality to the only woman he’s ever loved? An emotional war. The Seduction of Mr. Bradley is a moving and powerful story of love, humankind, secrets and discovery.

Book Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars; Down Low No More?
Review written by Donielle R. of APOOO BookClub
This review is from: The Seduction of Mr. Bradley (Paperback)

Bill Bradley is a good-looking, charming, and hard-working public relations professional but his world is about to be turned upside down in Minnie E. Miller's novel, The Seduction of Mr. Bradley. Jina Cook is an author in need of a public relations representative and Bill wants to be all that and more. In Jina, Bill has met the woman that could turn his world inside out and make him flip the script - literally. Bill is bisexual and when he falls in love with Jina, he becomes torn between the only woman he has ever loved and Ted, the man who has not only been his lover, but his friend and mentor as well. Ted has always been there for Bill. Bill has a heavy burden. How does he deal with the guilt and choose between the woman he loves and the man who has given him so much? And will Jina stay by his side when she finds out his secret?

In The Seduction of Mr. Bradley, Minnie E. Miller weaves an interesting tale that takes us into the lifestyle of a bisexual male. The characters in this story are well developed and realistic. Even if you do not approve of a gay, bisexual, or "down-low" lifestyle, you will find yourself rooting for Bill as simply a human being trying to find what is really in his heart. The imagery and detail were on point and emotions were high in this novel. You will be glued to the page wondering how it all comes together. Be ready to be surprised. I am very interested to find out what else Ms. Miller has in store for these characters.
---Reviewed by Donielle, APOOO BookClub

Book Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars; A Very Complicated Love StoryThis review is from: The Seduction of Mr. Bradley (Paperback)

The Seduction of Mr. Bradley by Chicago author Minnie E. Miller tells a very different kind of love story, a love story complicated by preferences. These particular preferences are not always understood or accepted by society and that is where it gets complicated.

Bill Bradley a bisexual man falls in love with Jina Cook, a straight woman. Mr. Bradley had no intention of falling for Jina, but he was seduced by her good looks, her sensuality and her honesty and innocence. He was also drawn in by the simplicity of her love. Jina had no idea that Bill was bisexual. He knew that once she found out, that he could lose her forever. Would Jina trust his love enough to believe that he could change? Bill was not so sure.

The Seduction of Mr. Bradley is a relationship novel. The twist is that this work of fiction explores the complexity of bisexuality from a man's point of view without pages and pages of illicit sex and lust. The sex scenes in this novel are done tastefully. Miller was more interested in putting a human face on men who are attracted to both women and other men,. The author did not sensationalize the subject, but sought, it seemed to explain who these men are. These men have been hated, despised and misunderstood while so many men who have been discovered on the "down low" have come out of the closet. Bill Bradley's story is being played out all over this country, in more instances than we know or imagine. Finally someone tells the story in a way that brings truth and reality to the forefront. It's a story told with compassion.

I found that I could not dislike Mr. Bradley; although I truly disliked his lifestyle. His character was just like any other African American male who worked hard at getting to the top of his game as a public relations professional. He was kind, gentle and caring. Bill was good people. He opened his own PR firm with the help of his older lover and mentor, Ted Grassley whom he was linked with until he met and fell in love with Jina Cook, a client who hired him to promote her book. Bill's struggle to find the true desires of his heart is explored in this novel. It is a story that makes you re-think your opinions on alternative lifestyles.

Set in Chicago, the author took great care to detail the setting well. You could just picture the places that the characters visited, the structure of the buildings, the surroundings in their living spaces and landmark spots in the Windy City. Miller also gave you secondary characters that you came to like and care about. Bill's best friend and confidante, Samara and her Aunt Mamie, another one of Bill clients, were well developed characters who added to the storyline.

How Bill and Jina dealt with his differences and how a family secret from her past contributed to Jina's reaction to Bill's sexuality brings the book to an unexpected ending. I really liked The Seduction of Mr. Bradley and I would recommend this book to those who would enjoy a love story, a love story this is full of humanity and truth.
---Reviewed by Idrissa Uqdah for

Connect with author Minnie Estelle Miller
Marvelously Mature Author and Essayist

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Intimate Conversation with Janks Morton

“One Man, One Camera, One Mission” -- JANKS MORTON is a groundbreaking international and award winning documentarian. As founder of iYAGO ENTERTAINMENT GROUP, LLC, he states "the company came into existence to reflect both the conscious and the unconscious soul of Black America. JANKS MORTON has been in the entertainment industry for more than 20 years and is a much sought-after teacher, lecturer, commentator and motivational speaker. He has convened workshops, seminars and served as panelist and keynote speaker at colleges, universities, prisons, conferences, churches and community centers around the world.

BPM: What makes you powerful as a person and a writer?
I constantly (and very self-deprecatingly) refer to myself as “just an ordinary guy” so I don’t consider myself as anything extraordinary and I fall very short of the word powerful, especially as a writer. Technically, I am a social, political and spiritual family advocate who expresses himself through multimedia, and the book “Why He Hates You” just happens to fall into that definition. What I will say is that the redemption I have found through my faith, has allowed me to be in tune with the direction my father wants me to pursue.

BPM: Who are your mentors? Where do you find your inspiration?
My spiritual mentor is Pastor A.R. Bernard of the Christian Cultural Center in Brooklyn, NY. Between his direction and the plethora of personal stories in the Black Community, my plate stays pretty full. Our people inspire me every day.

BPM: Finish this sentence- My writing offers the following legacy to future readers...
My writing and my films offers the following legacy to future readers...As a student of history, I understand the sage adage “Until lions have their historians, tales of the hunt shall always glorify the hunter” I want my works to be able to be looked upon by twenty second century Blacks as a resource for a specific reflection of what was transpiring in our community at this moment in time.

BPM: Introduce us to your book, Why He Hates You!: How Unreconciled Maternal Anger is Destroying Black Men and Boys.
Black Men and Boys are angry…Why? Because they have been forced to repress and bury deep in a place never discussed a burning and fiery angst towards their parents. Stated simply, they HATE their parents. Janks Morton in his semi-autobiographical work tackles head on the taboo subject of maternal resentment in the African American community. Why specifically maternal resentment? A generation of young black children have been raised exclusively by single-mothers. Morton acknowledges while that some of these children’s antipathy may be directed towards the non-residential fathers, predominantly the object and the focus of a young black boy’s rage is directed squarely at the person responsible for their guidance, their direction, their socialization, their joy and their pain. Their primary care givers and providers – their Mothers.

Official synopsis:
Morton’s narrative of searing personal stories offers a pathway to a larger conversation that for far too long has been held sacred… Morton’s talking truth describes the traumas young boy’s experiences with angst-creating parental techniques such as negotiation, manipulation, and castigation. Parental approaches that are too often utilized in the single parent home and are the well springs to the seas of resentment. The Author’s hopes is through sharing intimate and personal details from his own life, readers can begin to acknowledge the unresolved, unreconciled, and unrecognized parental resentments that can debilitate and shackle their lives. Morton’s personal stories shake loose those things unremembered, and unrecalled to help readers understand the power of forgiveness in order to walk the path towards restoration.

BPM: Introduce us to the primary message in your book.
The primary message of “Why He Hates You” is reconciliation through forgiveness. Now if I could just encourage more women to get past the title and jump into the narrative, the story would begin a renaissance and restoration between children and their parents.

BPM: Share with us two life enhancing sections from Why He Hates You.
1. After passing through the process of forgiveness, I had to understand that I was only able to forgive those things that I was consciously aware of, and that faint sound that appeared from time to time, were the roaring sirens of the repressed. Things that are in the subconscious, things unrecalled that still echo and can trip up your walk and potentially tempt your faith.

2. If any part of your past is unreconciled and you have not made peace with those things that have hurt you, those same things someday will manifest themselves to hurt you and someone else. Hurt people, hurt people.

BPM: What led you to create this book now?
I had been on the lecture circuit for a couple of years, and strangely enough, women constantly would ask me “where is the book” expanding upon my lectures. I think the opening chapter I explain that I like to do several things, but writing is not one of them. It came to a head when a woman explained to me that my lecture had the intensity and fervor of a southern Baptist tent revival, but she couldn’t recall a single lesson I had taught. So I understood at that juncture, I needed a resource for people to consume in their own space.

BPM: Who should read Why He Hates You and why?
Men, Women, Parents, grandparents and all races. There is a crippling and debilitating cultural mantra that has emerged over the past forty years that has rendered a generation of people into permanent children who can never relate to their parents in a healthy and adult fashion. As I detail throughout “Why He Hates You” if there is any resentment residing in you towards either parent, you ultimately wil become a slave to your own bitterness. Hate your mother, marry your mother to state it simply.

BPM: What impact will this book have on the community of readers?
I have seen the power of words to transform lives. And the peculiar thing is that it was words and actions that leads too many children to harbor unreconciled parental issues. As you follow me through my journey in the book, hoefully the light of redemption that was cast upon me, will open a doorway for the reader to find their own pathway to reconciliation.

BPM: What was your primary quest in publishing this book?
To dismantle the old business models that take creative control, do a poor job (if any) of promotion and fully exploit any autuer of inspired works. I come from the record industry so I am biased against $2500 suit wearing exec’s who can’t tell you where middle C is on the piano.

BPM: Who did you write Why He Hates You for? Why?
I wrote it specifically for Men who have had challenges in their relationships as well as mothers of young boys, struggling trying to figure them out.

BPM: What message in your book do you want readers to share with others?
True healing, redemption and peace reside in forgiveness. The trick of the world is to keep you in a place outside of those things of good. Confucious said “before you set out on a path of revenge, dig two graves”

BPM: What makes your book different from others on the same subject?
I don’t believe I have ever seen an author approach the subject matter from my lens. Throughout the book I intertwine the clinical (psychological) with the theological and show that they are two sides of the same coin.

BPM: Share with us your latest news, awards or upcoming book releases.
I am back in filmmaker mode. My next film “We Need To Talk: A Messages to our daughters” is slated for release June 29th. I am not a big hupe guy, but as I am about 80% percent complete, I see this film as an absolute game changer. It is a series of vignettes from some very reconciled women, with specific encouragement, direction, love and guidance to the next generation of women coming along. I have never cried while filming subjects, until I met these ten beautiful women.

BPM: How can our readers reach you online?

Why He Hates You!: How Unreconciled Maternal Anger is Destroying Black Men and Boys
by Janks Morton   Purchase books today from Amazon    ISBN-10: 1449590683

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Intimate Conversation with Katie McCabe

Katie McCabe is a National Magazine Award winner whose Washingtonian article on black surgical legend Vivien Thomas formed the basis for the HBO film Something the Lord Made, one of the highest rated original movies in HBO history and the winner of the 2004 Emmy and 2005 Peabody Awards. McCabe’s 2009 book Justice Older than the Law, co-authored with pioneering lawyer Dovey Roundtree, won the Association of Black Women Historians’ Letitia Woods Brown Book Prize.

BPM: What makes you powerful as a person and a writer?
I believe my power as a writer derives from my lifelong love affair with words and literature, my sense of the compelling stories hidden beneath the surface of outward events, and my fascination with unsung heroes. These passions came from my late parents, John and Kathleen Burns. They exemplified for me the kind of nobility and courage I endeavor to portray over and over again in my non-fiction as I seek out heroes and heroines whose lives have profoundly altered our world but whom history has forgotten or marginalized. My goal is to portray these history-makers with the vividness of fiction, and to bring them alive for future generations.

BPM: Where do you find your inspiration?
I find my inspiration in the lives of men and women who have, through their creative brilliance and the sheer force of their characters, managed against all odds to transform society. I was inspired, near the beginning of my writing career, by the story of cardiac surgery pioneer Vivien Thomas, the African American lab technician whose improbable segregation-era partnership with the volatile white surgeon Alfred Blalock led to the creation of modern heart surgery. The 2004 HBO film Something the Lord Made that was made from my 1989 Washingtonian magazine story on Mr. Thomas was described by the American Film Institute as “a revelation….a bittersweet story that is an important tool for America as it continues to search for a public vocabulary to discuss issues of race.”

That search has defined a large part of my work, which has focused on such improbable African American heroes as former Harlem Globetrotter Walt Kennedy, who pushed past crippling multiple sclerosis to coach a ragtag Alabama high school basketball team to the state finals, and college student JoAnne Johnson, whose illness became the catalyst for transforming the prospects of minority patients in need of bone marrow transplantation. When I discovered Dovey Johnson Roundtree through a Washington Post article in 1995, I knew I had found a woman whose nobility of spirit merited book-length treatment, and over the 15 years of our collaboration I have been profoundly inspired by her faith and her wisdom.

BPM: Finish this sentence: My writing offers the following legacy to future readers:
I have endeavored to pass on to the next generation of readers the stories of men and women who have prevailed over almost insuperable odds to achieve greatness in medicine, in the law, in athletics, and in public service. I believe that my legacy as a writer is that I have brought to life some truly extraordinary examples of the triumph of the human spirit. These examples speak to people of all races and backgrounds about what is possible when one draws strength from mentors and taps into one’s own well of courage, faith and tenacity.

BPM: Introduce us to your book, Justice Older than the Law.
Justice Older than the Law: the Life of Dovey Johnson Roundtree tells the story of the fearless civil rights warrior who shattered Jim Crow in the courtrooms of the Nation’s Capital and the World War II military, and led the vanguard of women ordained to the ministry. In a richly voiced first-person account written with National Magazine Award winner Katie McCabe, Dovey Roundtree has created an intimate history of America that reads like a novel, capturing the sweep of nine tumultuous decades and a vision of justice that goes far beyond the law. Justice Older than the Law channels the soul and the voice of the woman First Lady Michelle Obama saluted as “an inspiration” on the occasion of the book’s release last July.

BPM: Introduce us to the primary message in Justice Older than the Law.
Justice Older than the Law is a book about love, faith, courage, law, justice, and the relationship among them. Through the story of one great soul who prevailed over and transformed the evil of a segregated society through the law and a greater justice, this book teaches us all about the redemptive power of goodness.

BPM: Share with us three life enhancing sections from Justice Older than the Law.

"There's a gloriousness in the law, in its ability to bring us to the threshold of justice. And that counts for something -- that chance, that hope, that open door. But if we are to cross that threshold, we must find it in ourselves, in our own hearts and minds, to live out the rulings and decrees and mandates of the courts." (p. 176)

"Age has taken my strength, and it has robbed me of my eyesight, but I have yet a voice, and I raise it this day, at this hour, for our little children, that we may do right by them, that we who are their parents and their grandparents, their teachers and their pastors may nurture them and hold them to our bosoms, that we may baste them in love, that we may weave about them the cocoon of family...I have battled in my time for so many kinds of justice...But no battle of my half century at the bar has been so urgent as the one for the next generation. If every matter before every court in America were foreclosed this moment as a litigable issue, there would yet remain the cause of our little children. They are the case at bar. Theirs is the case I plead now."  (p. 222)

"The kind of justice I seek today is older by far than the law, and it resides in people's hearts. It is nursed into being not primarily in the pulpit or the classroom or the courtroom, but in the home, at the fireside and the dining room table, in the thousands of intimate moments when mother and father and children weave their bond. It is in this sanctuary that the passing on takes place, that the 'miracle in the hearts of men' of which Dr. King spoke unfolds itself." (p. 223)

BPM: What motivated you to create this book now?
I discovered Dovey Johnson Roundtree 15 years ago, when I picked up the Style section of the Washington Post, and was completely arrested by the photo of Dovey that appeared there, alongside an article on her collaboration with actress Cicely Tyson, who’d modeled her television character of a civil rights lawyer on Dovey. In her face, I saw wisdom, and pain, toughness and tenderness, and I wanted to know her story. And I was drawn, too, by the quote from Dovey beneath the photo: “There’s always somebody who would be the miracle-maker in your life, if you but believe.” Here was a lawyer talking of miracles, a woman who spoke in the cadences of a Southern minister, an attorney who clearly had ideas about justice that reached beyond the courtroom. The improbability of it all struck me with such force that I called her that week, and after one conversation knew that I wanted – that I needed – to write her story.

I sought her out in her tiny office in a row house in Northwest Washington, took note of her broken down chairs and the clients who filled the waiting room. I learned quickly that they brought with them not only their legal troubles, but troubled spirits. “I make my clients my children,” she’d said in that Washington Post article. “I can see stars where there’s nothing but a bunch of clay.” I followed her into the courtroom, watched her broker agreements between warring spouses and plead for “a little healing.” I saw the judges there, who had known her for decades, defer to her wisdom, and call her for advice.

Her story was much more than that of a unique lawyer, I found. For the next ten years, I spent time with her in her home, with her extended family, conducting hundreds of interviews, and continuing those interviews by phone after she retired and moved to her childhood home in Charlotte, North Carolina. In those years I learned that Dovey’s life transcends even the remarkable particulars of her achievements. Her story is one of spiritual as well as historic dimension. In the hours when she told me of her grandmother, her upbringing, her deeply nuanced view of justice, I learned that more than anything, it is the breadth of her vision that makes her who she is. Her desire to “cure the aching heart, the bewildered soul,” as she once told me, to do what she calls “fix the brokenness” is what made me know that hers was a story I wanted to tell. It is this vision – this ability to see stars in a lump of clay – that drew me, most of all, to Dovey.

BPM: What issues in today's society do you address in the book?
Contemporary America urgently needs this book. As we contemplate at fifty years’ distance the meaning of Brown v. Board in the light of recent Supreme Court rulings, as we struggle with issues of race at every turn, there is a sense that we’ve lost our bearings. What is justice? What sort of a society are we aiming toward? How can we capture the values we seem to have lost? How do we arrest what Dovey calls “the demon of violence” that is destroying our cities? To be able to tap into the world view of a 96-year-old living legend who brought her fight into the streets, the jailhouses, the churches, and ultimately, into the hearts of the individuals to whom she ministered, is an extraordinary opportunity, I believe, for people of all races. Like all truly great stories, Dovey’s teaches us essential truths without seeming to. Indeed, this book is designedly non-political. And although Dovey is a minister, her book is not overtly religious. It simply tells a story – a story of one human being’s quest for a kind of justice far beyond the law, with all the attendant wisdom such a quest implies.

BPM: Before we end the interview, define SUCCESS. What part does GRATITUDE play in achieving success, in your opinion?
Success, in my opinion, lies in the ability to harness one’s God-given talents for the good of the world. Gratitude is central to authentic success, because no one achieves success alone. Rather, we are deeply indebted to those who raised us, shaped us, mentored us, and it’s only when we fully acknowledge that debt and our obligation to pass on what our mentors have given us that we are fully realized human beings. Dovey Roundtree’s story is one long, eloquent argument for this kind of success.

BPM: What do you think makes your book different from others on the same subject?
There are no other books on Dovey Roundtree, so it’s unique in that sense. But I believe that the book is also distinguished from others of its genre – that is, other civil rights memoirs. What makes it unique is its voice, which I channeled into print from thousands of hours of tape-recorded interviews with Dovey over more than a decade. Justice Older than the Law is, in my mind and in Dovey’s, more than an autobiography of a civil rights warrior. It is an expression of a vision of justice older by far than the law, and we believe our book speaks movingly and urgently to our racially troubled times.

BPM: Share with us your latest news, awards or upcoming book releases.
Dovey and I are proud that the book won the 2009 Letitia Woods Brown Memorial Book Award from the Association of Black Women Historians, which praised Justice Older than the Law for the way it “aided in connecting with the person and the pathos of Dovey” by its use of the novel format. The judges stated, “Your work enhances our understanding of the importance of storytelling as biography.”

We are also deeply gratified by the fact that law firms in Washington, New York, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Hartford and Charlotte have embraced the book and made it a part of their diversity programming. On July 8, a truly extraordinary event is taking place: Thirty law firms in Washington, DC will be featuring the book at a “Law Night” for the rising ninth graders at Thurgood Marshall Academy, a charter school located in Anacostia, where Dovey ministered for 35 years at Allen Chapel AME Church. The Law Night, which will be held at Dovey’s alma mater, Howard University Law School, will bring together the Thurgood Marshall Academy students with attorneys and summer associates from the 30 law firms for a program I will present on Dovey and the book.

One of the great crusades of Dovey’s later years in Washington was to find a way to quell the tide of violence among young people, to do what she called “heal the brokenness” in society and especially the black family. This book is part of her healing effort. She believes that her story will point young people to the essential truths that will sustain them amid the chaos of contemporary culture and set them on the path of goodness. At age 96, she is prevented by gravely ill health from participating in these and other book promotion events, but she continues to celebrate with me the ripple effects of the book on which we worked together for so many years.

BPM: How can our readers reach you online?
To learn more about the book, to see the First Lady’s letter saluting Dovey, and to contact writer Katie McCabe and watch her presenting the book on YouTube, please visit

To order from the University Press of Mississippi:

To order from Amazon:

Please also visit the “Justice Older than the Law” fan club on Facebook.


Intimate Conversation with author Joseph W. Hoffler

Lt. Col. Joseph W. Hoffler, USAF (ret) is a native of Hertford, NC. He graduated from North Carolina Central University in 1962, with a BS in Biology. He also has a MBA from the University of Missouri. Hoffler is the president of Hoffler & Associates Counseling Services. He facilitates fathering groups with incarcerated dads, is a widower with two adult children and two grandsons, lives in Colorado Springs, CO, is a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity.

Promotion: Denied reveals how Lt. Col. Joseph W. Hoffler, a former commander of the Air Force Academy’s Security Police Squadron, was the victim of a racially motivated “witch-hunt.” The book also tells the story of an unlikely duo—an older, black commander from the segregated South and his young, white captain operations officer from New York City—who came together to fight a losing battle against institutionalized racism at the academy.

BPM: What makes you powerful as a person and a writer?
As a person it is the fact of competing and becoming a military commander. A military commander has a lot power and authority. He or she can decide promotions, assignments, level of performance. Now I am president of my own company in which I have full control over all aspects of the company. As a writer, my story is about fighting racism against a very powerful, politically connected opponent, the USAF Academy. An opponent who is in a state of denied and who for years has resisted any change or challenge of its authority.

BPM: Who are your mentors?
Without question my mentors were my parents. My father, was a strong, quiet soft-spoken Black man who taught me to stand up for is right and to earn respect. Earlier my dad worked in the Navy Yard. During my years at home, my dad was a self-employed auto mechanic. He inspired us with the knowledge that we were as good as anyone else. He repaired cars, trucks and tractors for both whites and Blacks in Hertford. That wasn’t an easy task during the 1950’s in the South. My dad taught me to watch the nightly news and read the morning papers. Two tasks which follow me today. He had that air of confidence about him. He held positions in church as Usher, Sunday Teacher and then President of the Deacon Board.

My mother was a college graduate who pushed us to do well in our school work. They knew that to earn a good living during that time period, a Black person had to earn a college degree. I had five siblings. Three sister and two brothers. My two bothers ahead of me, both earned academic scholarships and graduated from high at age 16.

ShelfLifeTV: Interview with Lt. Col. Joseph W. Hoffler, Ret

BPM: Finish this sentence- My writing offers the following legacy to future readers...
My writing offers the following legacy to future readers: Do not ever feel that your civil rights as an American citizen are assured. You must constantly be aware of people (s) who attempt to deny you your basic civil rights as an American citizen. And seek to strengthen the legal structures created to protect you. The recent story about Ms. Sherrod, proves beyond a doubt that the conflict between races are not over. Even such an innocent act of giving a speech at the NAACP can create racial conflict.

BPM: Book Spotlight: Promotion Denied

‘Promotion Denied’- The Harrowing True Story of Racism, Cover-Up, Betrayal and Vigilante Justice at the United Air Force Academy.

Because he consistently achieved outstanding reviews, Hoffler found himself on a special assignment as the commander of the Security Police Squadron at the US Air Force Academy. Hoffler was among a number of Black officers send to the Academy to increase the diversity of Black Air Force personnel. During his final year at the Academy, as he was being consider for promotion, a few white enlisted members of his squadron complained to the Chief of Staff and the Inspector General of the Academy that there were ‘too many Blacks in senior positions in the squadron.’ The senior officers launched a witch hunt against him by recruiting and illegally rewarding a poorly performing white airman in the squadron to fabricate false infractions, meant to embarrass and humiliate and ultimately lead to disciplinary actions and his early retirement. Hoffler attempts at fighting this injustice lead to further personnel actions against him and he finally realized that Headquarters Air Force, valued the reputation of the Air Force Academy and the protection of racist senior officers over integrity.

BPM: Introduce us to the primary message in your book, Promotion Denied.
Although my story is about the US Air Force Academy, there is racism in the U.S. Military. And there are not strong structures for personnel who feel that they have been discriminate against because of their race, can go and feel that they will get act.

BPM: What inspired you to create this book now?
I live in Colorado Springs which is the home of the Air Force Academy. I grew tired of the hypocrisy of the Air Force Academy of failing to address its racial past and having a media blitz about trying to recruit more Black cadets. Also of requiring the cadets to live by an honor code, while not applying that same standard to its senior officers. Over the past 20 years, I tried to get the Academy, like West Point and Annapolis to address its past racial problems. However, the Air Force Academy continues to put its head in the sand. I felt that my story and those of many other Black who were discriminated again by the Academy should be told and apologies and regress made to us.

BPM: Who should read this book?
Every American who pays taxes to support an institution like the Air Force Academy. Especially military retires, veterans and their families.

BPM: What impact will this book have on the community of readers?
I hope that it will cause them to ‘force’ the military to look at racism in its ranks. And where such injustices exist, discipline should be swift and appropriate. Just like the Air Force did when investigating sexual harassment at the Academy. Old cases in which Academy personnel conducted poor and illegally investigations, were reinvestigated and action taken. When influence at the appropriate levels the same can happen in cases involving racism at the USAF Academy and throughout the Air Force.

BPM: What was your primary quest for writing this book?
My quest was to exposure the racism at the USAF Academy, bring restitution to those who suffered as a result and hope that such actions will spread throughout the Air Force. Just as sexual harassment did.

BPM: What message in your book do you want readers to share with others?
Do not put all of your faith into believing that when racism appears, all you have to do it to report the incident and the system will take care of them. In the final analysis, the system is only as good as the people in the system. Work hard to get the right people in the right positions.

BPM: What do you think makes your book different from others on the same subject?
First I would like to add, there are few books about racism in the military. This book is written by me. In my own words, embracing the happy times in my life, my disappointments and frustrations. Usually, when a story which contains such emotions is envisioned by a non writer, typically the story is told to a professional writer who writes the story based on what he/she is told. To me some of the emotions are lost in translation from voice to keyboard. Not here, no one can put into words how someone truly feels. My readers have told me, they can feel me in every line.

BPM: Shares with us your latest awards, upcoming book release.
Last year I was chosen as the Juneteenth Newsmaker of the years for writing my story and bringing to the news, racism in the USAF Academy, CO. And I am very honored to participate in the Congressional Black Caucus Author Pavilion on September 17, 2010.

BPM: How can our readers reach you on line?
The readers can find out more about me at my website:  or by emailing me at:

BPM: Before we end the interview, define SUCCESS. What part does ATTTIUDE play in achieving success in your opinion?
Success is when someone reaches he/her goal that they have set for themselves. It could be a promotion on the job, purchasing a new home, getting married, etc. If one hopes to be successful, one must have a positive attitude. It is nearly impossible to succeed, with a negative attitude. Success and attitude go hand in hand and compliment each other.

Purchase copies of Promotion: Denied: The Harrowing True Story of Racism...
ISBN-13: 9780979468605 | ISBN: 0979468604

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Intimate Conversation with author Brook Blander

Intimate Conversation with author Brook Blander

Liken to the waves of the ocean in her hometown of Savannah, GA, Brook Blander, is a force of nature. At the tender age of five, she penned her first story and has since matured into an author, poetess, publisher, lecturer, teacher and mentor. Honesty, passion and the power of words are her weapons to proclaim love, profess healing and calm the unrest in the souls of the lost. Her personal movement includes the restoration of the hearts and spirits of women wounded by violence. Thus, she is a compassionate philanthropist to the cause. Her proudest of all accomplishments is being a mother and partner in love. She lives in Michigan where she continues to write, design and manage her companies.

Believing every artist’s vision is the truth of their work led to her founding ebonyLotus Creatives in 2009, a publishing company which allows her full creative control of her works and offers the same to poets, and authors. In conjunction, it is the revitalization of the art of journaling through her exquisite handmade journal line. Later that year, the perfect storm, quiet and mighty, arrived in her fourth book, Personal. Intimate Comforts of Reflection (2009). With her own, true and personal journal entries included, the book portrays love and exposes the horrors of physical abuse passed on by women generations before her, and in beauty with grace tells of their strength to endure. Left without choice, Detroit split wide open to make way for her and she has not refused them.

She has performed at various venues to including Artist Endeavor; Collaborative Art and Poetry (feature poet), Echoverse Poetry Series DPL Words After Dark at the Detroit Public Library, I Am Woman Expo (feature poet) in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month at Wayne State University. In addition, she has been a featured guest on Sol Searching BlogTalk Radio as well as Motown Literary Writers Radio Show. Blander was also a feature poet for the opening ceremony night for the 2009 Essence of Motown Literary Jam Conference. These opportunities extended her reach to the world and today the benefits continue to astound.

BPM: What makes you powerful as a person and a writer?
It is my belief that every person has the power to create change. Writing is my power. I have and continue to reach many through the power of the written word. What’s important, as a writer, is to be aware of that power and use it for positive change.

BPM: How much of what you write reflects on your outlook on life?
A great deal of what I write is a reflection of my outlook on life. I vie to tell stories (through poetry, memoir and fiction) of triumph in overcoming the obstacles placed in our lives. The subject lines that I illustrate are real and it is my duty to write them authentically and as I know them.

BPM: Who are your mentors? Where do you find your inspiration?
I find my inspiration to write in everyday living and triumphs. To see a woman feeding her child with no worries of where the next meal will come from is an inspiration for me. I'm inspired by the many things I observe in a day. I also read the poetry of poets that I admire and am inspired.

BPM: What do you think of the increasingly fortuitous sex in African American literature?
It’s disappointing to say that least. Literature is a mockery of life as we see it, and unfortunately in all the other medias, we are seeing an overflow of the same thing…sex filled movies, sex filled songs…sex, sex and more sex. Someone told a truth long ago in the statement that “sex sells.” It does and many African American artists have taken this as an invitation to write it to sell make money. I am often thrown off by the few books of literature on the shelves amongst the overflow of other writings. To me, this is an encouragement to continue writing the literature that I write.

BPM: Finish this sentence- My writing offers the following legacy to future readers...
My writing offers the following legacy to future readers...Truth, in its most raw form. We, African Americans, have lost and been misinformed on so much of “our” Truth. It has been sugar-coated and watered down so much that there are as many accounts as there are people giving them. My writing removes the substitutes and fillers and bestows my own honest interpretation of the world that I see around me today to the eyes that will view it tomorrow.

BPM: now that Im here is a story filled with the joy and pain of remembrance, and the glory of a journey to the sun. Like the lotus flower, the roots of poetess, Brook Blander, settle in the muddy waters of her past. These seven chapters rearrange the mind and reach for the deepest regions of the heart. The product of a rape and molestation, the collection opens in The Basement of moist walls, singing blues and the marks the end, and the beginning of two souls. Hanging Moss is a meal to remember those gone during a season of unjust killings. Waiting for Tomorrow tells of a child deprived and Girl of a life of growth and acceptance. Making You tells of the desperation for and need for love while A Getting Society shows how selfish behaviors and laziness are inherited.

BPM: What specific revelation prompted you to write now that I'm here: lyrics from the mud to the sun?
It is my belief that at some point and time in all of our lives, we are victims of something. It is also my belief that to be a victim is not something that is supposed to be permanent. I have reached a point in my own life where the title simply does not fit anymore. I was abused, I am no longer. I was molested. It is going on no longer. I believe that those that are blessed with the chance to leave a situation that made them a victim are obligated to share their story with others in hopes of bringing another survivor through. “To whom much is given, much is required.”

BPM: Who do you want to reach with your book and the message within?
There is a list of people that I am aiming to reach with this book. I want to reach people that are still in the situations of domestic violence. I want to reach the parents that have had a hand in causing a pain that still lingers in their adult children. I am extending my reach with the lyrics of this book to youth that are beginning the journey into their adulthood with the same strikes on their backs that I carry. It is my desire to show them that there is a higher living, a forgiving life, and a life that can move forward and away from the pain.

BPM: How will reading your book shape the readers lives?
Though we read for entertainment and information, we read to relate. When a story or a poem or a character reflects an image of our own lives, we relate and hope for a solution to follow so that we get the outcome or avoid the outcome of the one in the writing. now that I'm here is an inspiration, and hopefully a motivation, to all that read it to heal, forgive, help, and live.

BPM: What are some of their specific issues, needs or problems addressed in this book?
Now that I'm Here touches on the topics of child abuse, domestic violence, rape and molestation. It also speaks on my view of poetry, love, triumph and acceptance.

BPM: What was the most powerful (section) chapter in the book, now that I'm here?
The most powerful section of now that I'm here has to be the final one, At The Feet of Yesterday. This portion of the book tells where I am, the height of feat that I have reached, in spite of all the prior chapters, of the book and of my life. It gives honor to those that have come before me and recognizes them as my foundation and strength. It is the part of the book that invites the reader into their own triumphant existence.

BPM: Ultimately, what do you want readers to gain from your book?
…the realization that triumph awaits….that being a victim lasts as long as the victim desires. now that I'm here is my personal story, through lyric, of all that I have endured throughout my life. It ends with my joy. It ends with me denouncing my label of being a victim of molestation, witnessing domestic violence, and physical, sexual and verbal abuse. I write because I am a survivor and a conqueror and I desire for my readers to see the possibility for their own lives.

BPM: What do you think makes your book different from others on the same subject?
This is my story. Mine. And though the topics are universal, I have written them in the voice of my own Truths to challenge and compel people to look beyond their cultures, religions and beliefs and find their way out of these situations. Poetry and pain are often found together, but less often is it written in a way that shows the ‘happy ending’. now that I'm here is my happy ending that cannot and could not be written by anyone else.

BPM: Share with us your latest news or upcoming book releases. How can readers reach you?
Readers can visit my website at:  Latest news, lets see. I have just released “The Soul’s Expanded Edition” of Personal; Intimate Comforts of Reflection. This is a re-release of my fourth book with additional poems. I will also be starting my e(mail)-gazine, ZoeticScribe, which is an email delivered magazine about and for women writers. Readers and writers can subscribe at

Book: now that I'm here: lyrics from the mud to the sun
View the full electronic presskit from Brook Blander

Purchase now that I'm here at Amazon
ISBN-10: 0976759233
ISBN-13: 978-0976759232

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Intimate Conversation with author James W. Lewis

James W. Lewis is a novelist and freelance writer published in several books. After spending twenty years in the Navy, James retired from active duty and now moonlights as an assistant personal trainer while completing his studies in Kinesiology.

BPM: Introduce us to your book, Sellout.
SELLOUT follows a black woman, black man and white woman who face the consequences of dating outside their race. In the quest to find what they think is missing in their lives, they encounter guilt, fear and struggles they never anticipated...including murder.

SELLOUT also offers a comprehensive look at interracial dating, revealing an inside view on how racial stereotypes and prejudice impact relationships within and outside the race. Sometimes, stereotypes influence people to "jump the fence."

BPM: What motivated you to write the book?
While in the Navy, I worked at a duty station where about 80% of the black men were dating outside the race (about twenty of us total). I was one of the few married to a black woman. One of the guys told me about his messy divorce and he said he was never going to date another black woman again. It seemed like the brothers were running away from black women. I found this "flight to the white" disturbing and intriguing at the same time. Were these men running away? That experience gave birth to SELLOUT.

BPM: What issues in today's society does your book address?
Although we live in the age of Obama and a multi-ethnic society like never before, we are still not color-blind. Remnants of the Jim Crow past creep up daily and some people just can not stand the sight of racial mixing, especially between blacks and whites. Still, there's been an increase in marriages between black men and white women. And even though statistics show black women as least likely to date interracially, that trend is changing as well.

BPM: What was your primary quest in publishing this book?
To open a dialogue about interracial dating and uncover why some people are so quick to abandon their own race (in regards to finding a mate). I wanted to understand the difference between personal preference (for another race) and flat-out refusal to date within the race. I've learned these refusals mostly stem from negative stereotypes.

BPM: Who did you write this book for? Why?
I wrote the book not just for black women, black men and white women, but for anyone who may be curious about interracial dating and those who've done it. With SELLOUT, I believe most people will identify with at least one of the characters (including the supporting cast), even if the reader is of a race other than black or white. Attitudes toward miscegenation spans across all color lines.

BPM: Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp and share?
My main message is this: It doesn't matter what race you are, EACH race has its bad apples. I don't think any race is superior, especially in regards to finding a potential mate. People should not be so quick to believe in stereotypes as if they are completely true.

James W. Lewis, The Pantheon Collective

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Intimate Conversation with author d. E. Rogers

d. E. Rogers has written five great novels  (White Lie, Color Line, Just Like Your Daddy, I Know She Didn’t, and Counterfeit Friends). His books have had increasing and incredible sales records. On every project, Rogers has taken his writing skills to the next level where few have gone. His stories are rich in reality and tell of real life love and drama that all can relate to. The characters jump from the pages and into your life as though they were long time friends. After reading one of his books, you will want to read another.

Book spotlight: Crossing Color Lines

Is your America separate, but not equal?

Segregation of races can have a powerful impact that defeats the will to fight if you’re on the wrong side. But what if YOU had a chance to choose your race? Would you stay in your own skin, or choose the race with the best benefits?

In Crossing Color Lines, Chase Cain chooses which side to live on. After seeing the brutal hanging of his father as a child and having features and skin light enough to ‘pass’, Chase Cain decides to create his own fate: Leading the life of a white man. With just a small ‘white lie’, Chase gambles with his family, friends and love, while claiming wealth, fame and fortune. Not understanding the game or knowing the players, his choice becomes a living hell and his world begins to crumble. But, just as he attempts to rebuild his life, enemies from his past resurface to remind him that certain lines should never be crossed!

BPM: Are your characters from the portrayal of real people?
Some of my characters personality traits are on point with people I know. In Crossing Color Lines most of my characters face some harsh realities that many of my friends and family members have been through. The inner workings of how families interact, fight and come together is read throughout my book. In all of my stories I carry with me the people who have shaped my mind and helped me grow. So in my writings they are seen but through the eyes of how I see them. Which may differ from how they might see themselves.

BPM: What inspired you to write this story?
My true inspiration to write this story comes from my love for people and how we need to strive to become equal on all things. At the heart of this story is the Civil Rights Movement. Reading about those times and knowing about the struggle that many black people had is disheartening and a terrible tragedy. Those times and years before shows the strength of a people through the hardest times in this country’s history. I kind of wanted to pay homage to that time period with a story that engulf the movement and show the affects that an unequal society has on the development of black child. With racism and integration at the core of this story I posed a question of whether or not a person would choose to stay in their race in which he/she was born or choose a race that had the best benefits.

BPM: What issues in today's society have you addressed in the book?
A lot. This story touches upon the civil rights movement, racism, slavery, equal opportunity employment, affirmative action, stereotypes, rape and a cast of others issues that make this story a very compelling and great read.

BPM: Why did you decide to pick the African-American Fiction (Drama) genre for your book?
The story lead to me this genre. I love a story with depth in the characters. I present many obstacles for my characters that keep them on the run and the reader guessing what's going to happen next. The challenging part for me is keeping the story fresh so that my readers appreciate my artistry.

BPM: What is your most valuable lesson about the publishing industry?
The publishing industry is just like any other industry. It's a difficult nut to crack but the market is wide open for people to publish there books a number of ways. You just have to be smart and diligent about your work ethics and know what you want.

BPM: What writers inspire you and why?
James Baldwin – because he was such a literary genius who was able to tap into the social issues of his time and write some of the most brilliant stories that helped changed minds and social behaviors.

Zora Neale Hurston – because of her style of writing and for remaining true to what she knew. Her stories were a depiction of how race relationship were and how people interacted during those periods in time, and

Marcus Garvey – because of his spirit and belief that black people could achieve greatness with unity and self-empowerment. His vision of black Americans rising above their plight and achieving equality is still alive today by standing up for what’s right.

BPM: What did you hope to accomplish by writing this particular story?
Outside of making it to the Best seller lists, my main goal is to open up eyes to racism and begin a positive constructive discussion. I hope those discussions could lead to developments of more equality amongst races and a better understand of us all.

BPM: How can readers reach you online? Share with us your latest news.
d. E. Rogers author of Crossing Color Lines (blog)

Latest News:
Crossing Color Lines is now available on Amazon, through our website, Borders, and Baker & Taylor. We also have a new network available to any and all d. E. Rogers fans. The d. E. Rogers Book Network is for fans to network, discuss issues the book identifies, and engage with one another as avid readers. Fans can join the network through our Facebook page or our website.

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