Children Book: From Sagging to Success by Florence M. Howard

From Sagging to Success 
by Florence M. Howard, Illustrated by Emery Franklin 



From Sagging to Success” is a message to urban youth and the adults who want to help them become extraordinary. Young people are unfairly judged because of their appearance and cultural misperceptions. They need to be made aware of the repercussions of sagging. Sagging pants even might be an indication of a sagging mindset or low self-esteem. A fictionalized character in book illustrations, Derrick goes from sagging to success as he learns about Black history, reads books read and written by successful people and changes the way he thinks.

He shares his new knowledge with his parents who also embrace a positive outlook, productive behaviors and principles of success. At the end of the book, Derrick and his parents have successfully transmitted principles of success to the next generation. The book is beautifully illustrated and the paintings were created first as a library gallery exhibit.

The book educates readers our history and successes, illuminates concepts of success and inspires them to act on what they learn. Readers are motivated to examine their thinking patterns, to recapture the dreams that they laid aside or never attempted and to accomplish them. They gain the wisdom and tools to become successful and are equipped to share those ideas, concepts and actions with others. 


Excerpt from Introduction – From Sagging to Success


Author Note: The book contains 15 paintings by illustrator Emery Franklin. The 14 of the illustrations are from his narrative art series, Crossroads: From Sagging to Success art series, that was on exhibit at the Benjamin L. Hooks Library during February 2011.

Sagging is the fashion style of intentionally wearing your pants so that your underwear shows. This style is much older than the last 15-20 years. The trend can be traced back to urban teenagers of the 1970’s and the popularity of silk underwear. As one friend put it, “We sagged because it was cool and to show our manhood. It was our way of saying, ‘Look! I’m wearing silk, these ain’t cotton.’” If you’re under the age of 15, ask your mother, grandmother or aunt, if she wore bell-bottoms, platform shoes, halter tops and mini-skirts during her teens. Chances are she did. Fashion trends come and go, and come again.

MTV, BET, YouTube, and DVDs have transformed this 1970’s rite of passage into a universal statement of individuality. It has lasted and lasted and crossed generational lines. Baby boomers in their 50’s and 60’s have been sagging along with their grandchildren. 


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Intimate Conversation with Florence M. Howard

Intimate Conversation with Florence M. Howard


Florence M. Howard
is an accomplished, dynamic and compassionate visionary.  She obtained her first library card at the then-recently integrated Main Library on Peabody in Memphis .  Director of Community Affairs for WREG-TV, she established and ran the Knowledge Bowl quiz show and Emmy-winning Kids Count campaign for 12 years.  She obtained degrees in Journalism from the University of Memphis. Today, she is an author, publicist, event coordinator, and inspirational speaker. She opened her company, Secret Shop Communicators (http://www.sscommpr.com) in 1999.


BPM: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of your family.

Throughout my life, I have been supported by good people – trusted teachers, church members and friends.  Apparently, they saw something in me that I couldn’t see myself.  I am always amazed by the good things that people tell me about myself.  Thanks Goodness, I choose to believe them and not my own fears or misgivings.  I was also inspired by things that I read. Books have helped me develop my thinking, my attitudes, my hopes and my dreams.  They have helped me correct self-defeating behavior and to grow in ways beyond what I knew growing up.

BPM: What does “growth” mean to you?
Growth means changing for the better, personal improvement.  I am not the same person that I was two years ago, five years ago and certainly not 20 years ago –emotionally, spiritually, physically or professionally.  I once heard a man who was being interviewed on a talk show and applauded for his accomplishments as a scientist, inventor, writer, etc.  He answered, “All that is true but I didn’t do it all at the same time.”   That said to me that we don’t have to do everything at once to become the person that God has called us to be but we should be working on some aspect of the plan daily.

BPM: Introduce us to your book, From Sagging to Success and the primary message.

My book, “From Sagging to Success” is a message to urban youth to inspire them to be much more than what people say they are and for the people that want to help them become extraordinary.  The primary message of the book is that sagging pants might indicate a sagging mindset and how we think about ourselves influences how we act.  Urban youth are often viewed unfairly and stereotyped based on their appearance. They are misjudged due to cultural misconceptions. 

Young people need to be aware of the repercussions of sagging.  The book addresses these issues through the fictionalized account of the life of a youth named Derrick and the illustrations of Emery Franklin.  The book is beautifully illustrated and the paintings were created first as a library gallery exhibit.

This book will change the way you look at young people and, perhaps, inspire you to make your own dreams come true.  It also gives you talking points and tools to help other people.  Read “From Sagging to Success” and become better informed about Black history, inspired to grow and be more successful.

BPM: What drew you to tackle the questions or topics in your book? 
I was inspired to turn pictures from a Black History month art exhibit into words and motivate young people, about the world, about life in general and about Black life in particular. The first painting in the book is timed after the Emancipation Proclamation, the second painting looks at the Reconstruction Period, another focuses on the Memphis Sanitation Workers Strike.  That strike is part of my history because my mother and stepfather participated in those marches in 1968.  I ran News Channel 3’s Knowledge Bowl competition from 1987-1998 and I saw firsthand how little of our history young African American know.  I have seen them drop their heads when slavery is mentioned instead of realizing that they are the descendents of survivors. 

From 2002- 2008, I worked with the local NAACP running the Voter Empowerment Campaign and the Get-Out-To-Vote effort.  It is sad to say that our children do not know our history and what they know is not in the context of our experiences. As the author, I gave history and background information to put the paintings, their time and place or subject they illustrated into context from an African American perspective. 

I bring my perspective to the topics in the book – low self-esteem, the after-affects of mistreatment, voting in local, state and federal elections, changing the way your think, educating yourself, recognizing your own genius, committing yourself to being successful – all of it.

BPM: What are the most important responsibilities of parent or guardian?

I believe the most important responsibilities of a parent or guardian is to love, respect, nurture, correct and train a child.  Whether a parent is present or away from the home, children need to know that you care and in the absence of something being said or done to indicate otherwise, children grow to believe they are forgotten and unimportant.

BPM: Does your faith or education inspire your writing?
I am an experienced writer with two degrees in journalism and whatever I write is guided by my faith.  I pray over every sentence.  I recently meet a fellow author at a mutual book signing that asked me unexpectedly if I believed the Bible is the word of God.  I said, “Yes, without a doubt, I believe the Bible is word of God and that it was written by men who were inspired by God in what they wrote.”   He laughed at me and said “how do you know?”  I answered that my book was written by me and inspired by God.  That ended that part of the discussion.   My writing is inspired by my faith.  Otherwise, it would not be as clear, as insightful or as real.

BPM: How is the book being received by the readers?
The book has been well-received:  Readers love the book.  It is a must-have for anyone with children and grandchildren and for those who teach or work with them.  I am working on some workbooks for students in elementary, middle school and high school.

Here are a couple of quotes from readers:
This book is for all ages. ~  Dr. Yvonne Osborne

I got this book at the NBCC and its an amazing history lesson for our children. From Sagging to Success tells an amazing story and the artwork is gorgeous. If you have young boys in your life BUY THIS BOOK...
5 Stars ~ Debra Owsley, Amazon post

The Book is Great!! And it will be a bestseller, needs to be standard reading for every child in Memphis and through out the United States ...yes seriously.  ~ Rhonda T.

This book is for anyone who has children that need to be motivated to be all they can be in spite of the odds. The art is wonderful!! ~ Pearl, Amazon post
 
BPM: Ultimately, what do you want readers to gain from your book?

I want my readers to recapture the dreams that they laid aside or never attempted and to accomplish them.  I want them to go from a sagging self-concept to an empowered experience and feeling of success.  I want everyone to realize that how you think is more important that how you dress.
 
BPM: How does your book relate to your present situation, spiritual practice or other life path?

Thanks to self-publication of  “From Sagging to Success,” my life-long dream of being a published book author has come true.  Writing the book made me examine my own actions and attitudes toward success and to refocus my understanding of what the Bible says – “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.”   Now I challenge every negative thought and loudly and intentionally practice anticipation and thankfulness.  I also think of the outcome that I want to see happen so that when God does it, He gets all the credit and the glory.
 
BPM: What are your goals as a writer? Do you set out to educate? Entertain? Illuminate? Inspire?

Everything that I write has its own purpose.  The purpose of “From Sagging to Success” is to educate about our history and successes, illuminate concepts of success and inspire readers to act on what they learn.  Right now, I am finishing up my family’s genealogy book which is designed to educate older and younger family members about our personal heritage and to help locate others who through marriage, distance and circumstances don’t even know they are part of the group.

BPM: A Legacy is something that is handed down from one period of time to another. Finish this sentence - “My writing offers the following legacy to future readers... ”

My writing offers the following legacy to future readers: the wisdom and tools to become successful and to teach those ideas, concepts and actions to the next generation.  Unless we can foster success in the next generation, our legacy is a dead end and not a path that they can follow.  Scripture says that “a good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children.” 

Money is not the only thing that can be inherited.  The inheritance can be a lifestyle as well as an attitude of success, responsibility, creativity and the ability, talents and skills to make your way in the world.  My mother didn’t leave my brothers and sisters a lot of money.  She taught us how to appreciate life, to be kind, hardworking and it paved the way for our successes.  Her favorite mantra was:  “You don’t know whose hands you will fall in.”   When she died at the age of 45, we were blessed to hold each other up and to stay close because we had been trained to help each other and to rejoice over each other’s successes.


FROM SAGGING TO SUCCESS:  THE STORY OF EMERY FRANKLIN

Written by Florence M. Howard
Illustrated by Emery Franklin


From Sagging to Success” is a message to urban youth and the adults who want to help them become extraordinary. Young people are unfairly judged because of their appearance and cultural misconceptions.  They need to be made aware of the repercussions of sagging. Sagging pants even might be an indication of a sagging mindset or low self-esteem.  A fictionalized character in book illustrations, Derrick goes from sagging to success as he learns about Black history, reads books read and written by successful people and changes the way he thinks. 

Derrick shares his new knowledge with his parents who also embrace a positive outlook, productive behaviors and principles of success.  At the end of the book, Derrick and his parents have successfully transmitted principles of success to the next generation.  The book is beautifully illustrated and the paintings were created first as a library gallery exhibit.

The book educates readers our history and successes, illuminates concepts of success and inspires them to act on what they learn.  Readers are motivated to examine their thinking patterns, to recapture the dreams that they laid aside or never attempted and to accomplish them.  They gain the wisdom and tools to become successful and are equipped to share those ideas, concepts and actions with others.

 
Purchase the book for youth centers, libraries, and love ones!

From Sagging to Success: The Story of Emery Franklin by Florence M Howard
Amazon Purchase Link:  http://amzn.com/0615597726  







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Intimate Conversation with Andrea Foy


Intimate Conversation with Andrea Foy


Andrea Foy
is an author, speaker and coach.  She conducts workshops and seminars on topics such as: Women in Management, Leadership Skills for Women, Professional Presentation Skills, Self Esteem, Assertiveness, Diversity, Leadership Skills and Business Etiquette. Ms. Foy has been certified by the Professional Woman Network as a Professional Coach and Diversity Consultant.

Ms. Foy’s knowledge of business and professionalism comes from over 20 years of customer service experience working for companies such as McDonald’s, Sears, Delta and USAir Airlines, American Express Financial Advisors, Sharkey’s Modeling and Talent Agency the Federal Government. She is a member of Professional Women’s Network and the National Black MBA Association.  Among her many accomplishments, Ms. Foy has authored her first book, has a Bachelor’s in Communications from Wright State University and is working on her Master’s Degree in Business and Technology specializing in Management and Leadership from Capella University. She is also an Advanced Communicator with Toastmasters International.

BPM:  What are you most thankful for today?
My family, my health, my success, friends, talent and the Obama family!  I am thankful for being a published author.  It is one of the most challenging but rewarding things you can do in life.  Being a self-published author puts you in complete control and it is nice.

BPM:  Tell us about your latest book, HIRE POWER: How to Find, Get, and Keep a Job. What are the main subjects discussed?
My book is a non-fiction book for the mature YA reader, with tips on job hunting, customer service and working in general.

 
BPM:   Readers, I would like to introduce you to an important book, In the Still of the Night: Personal Safety for Women by Andrea Foy. 
The book discusses violence against women exists in all cultures, ages, religions, sexual orientations, educational backgrounds and income levels. The World’s Women 2010: Trends and Statistics report from the United Nations’ Statistics Division’s reveals these key findings:

* Violence against women is a universal phenomenon.

* Women are subjected to different forms of violence – physical, sexual, psychological and economic – both within and outside their homes.

* Rates of women experiencing physical violence at least once in their lifetime vary from several per cent to over 59 per cent depending on where they live.

In The Still of the Night includes over 100 personal safety tips for women including

           * How to make your home safe when you are there and when you are not.
           * Safety tips for traveling in a car, bus, or train.
           * Cruise safety tips for traveling alone or with a group.
           * Safety tips for young women going to college.
           * Tips for protecting yourself online.

A former International Flight Attendant, author, professional speaker and coach, Andrea has traveled extensively.  She has witnessed events and has experienced things that have stayed with her. Her experiences have taught her well and she is now on a quest to ‘pay it forward.’ This book is not filled with facts and statistics, charts and graphs but will real- life stories and observations. This book is must for all women from 12-102.

BPM:  How important is reading to you?
Communicating in some way, talking, reading, writing, it is like breathing to me. It calms me down and soothes me, no matter what the content.

BPM:  Have you ever considered what kind of legacy you want to leave future generations?  What do you want to be remembered for?
I hope my book is used for future generations because they all need to learn.

BPM:  How may our readers contact you online and pick up your latest work?
Readers can purchase HIRE POWER: How to Find, Get, and Keep a Job at my website: www.andreafoy.com and Amazon.com.  It is available as an e-book too.



Purchase In the Still of the Night: Personal Safety for Women Published by Professional Women Network (www.pwnbook.net), Personal Safety is available at:   http://andreafoy.com/book-table, www.pwnbooks.com and www.Amazon.com.


Purchase HIRE POWER by Andrea Foy
Author Website:  www.andreafoy.com
ISBN-10: 0981743692
ISBN-13: 978-0981743691
Amazon:   http://www.amazon.com/Hire-Power-Andrea-Foy/dp/0981743692

 
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HIRE POWER by Andrea Foy

HIRE POWER
How to Find, Get, and Keep a Job
by Andrea Foy



HIRE POWER:  How to Find, Get, and Keep a Job  by Andrea Foy
Hire Power is a how-to guide that steps you through the process of landing the job you want—yes; want—to knowing when to leave for better opportunities. Geared toward the workplace neophyte, this book provides insight for the experienced employee too.

In Hire Power you will learn:

**  Basic business etiquette
**  The elements of a resume
**  How to complete an application
**  Appropriate and inappropriate attire for an interview
**  How to deal with coworkers, bosses and customers
**  How job performance can lead to great appraisals and promotions
 

Purchase HIRE POWER by Andrea Foy
Buy from the Author Website: www.andreafoy.com
ISBN-10: 0981743692
ISBN-13: 978-0981743691







HIRE POWER Excerpt: Chapter 3

Applying for a Job

The first thing you want to do when starting a job search is DREAM!   Take time to decide what you want to do. Back in my parents’ day, people worked for the same employer and to what time it regardless even if they didn't like the job. Nowadays the average is seven jobs before retirement. Whether it's a desire to go to college after post-high-school employment, a planned career change or loss of work due a volatile economy, employer/employee loyalty has waned. A little preparation while not employed will do wonders for your career and life.

Mind mapping is a great exercise to help organize employment options. The process starts with a broad theme and then incorporates brainstorming to narrow the focus. Use a sheet of paper or poster board and colored pencils to write what you like or want. For example, if you like animals right to work ANIMALS in the center of the paper and then circle it. From the circle draw several lines so that appears to be a sun with rays. The brainstorming component considers different professions that deal with your like: animals. Write each profession-veterinarian, pet store owner, rescue shelter, as well as just, dog trainer, groomer, etc.-on a different sunray.

The next phase of brainstorming looks at each profession in more detail. Consider what the job entails and what it takes to acquire the job. Let's start with veterinarian. Draw several lines under the veterinarian sunray. Words like COLLEGE, INCOME, SICK PETS, SURGERY, EMPLOYEES, etc. will be placed on those lines. Repeat the process for each profession until you have developed a, good list of information. If you choose to study veterinary medicine for eight years, you can work as a receptionist at animal clinic to gain experience and be close to your like.

Even if you're not in dire need of a job, do not go to the first company that offers you a position. Do your research. Compare and contrast. Evaluate pay them benefits; analyze the location of travel and aspects. Consider work hours and your availability. You would do yourself a disservice by accepting the job that makes you miserable.

Apply for a job at a company where you'd like to work. Do the employees seem happy? What is the business’ appearance?  Does the company to promote from within? Can you envision management or even owning the business over time? Is the location easily accessible by car or mass transit? Begin with the end in mind. Think about the future beyond tomorrow. You may have to spend a lot of time away from family and friends so may not why not make the work environment almost as enjoyable as being at home.

Far too many people take a job for the money and end up disappointed, frustrated and miserable. To make matters worse, they transfer that dissatisfaction to their co-workers making the workplace a difficult environment for others.

Simplify your life. Be proactive and go where you want to work versus where you have to work. Applying anywhere for financial reasons only doesn’t it benefit you or your employer. Research companies in which you expect to excel. How can you best help the company?

(Continues...)

Copyright © 2009 by ANDREA FOY.  Excerpted by permission of the author. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this website.



Purchase HIRE POWER by Andrea Foy
Buy from the Author Website: www.andreafoy.com
ISBN-10: 0981743692
ISBN-13: 978-0981743691


About the Author
Andrea Foy is an author, speaker and coach.  She conducts workshops and seminars on topics such as: Women in Management, Leadership Skills for Women, Professional Presentation Skills, Self Esteem, Assertiveness, Diversity, Leadership Skills and Business Etiquette. Ms. Foy has been certified by the Professional Woman Network as a Professional Coach and Diversity Consultant.    Ms. Foy’s knowledge of business and professionalism comes from over 20 years of customer service experience working for companies such as McDonald’s, Sears, Delta and USAir Airlines, American Express Financial Advisors, Sharkey’s Modeling and Talent Agency the Federal Government. She is a member of Professional Women’s Network and the National Black MBA Association.

Among her many accomplishments, Ms. Foy has authored her first book, has a Bachelor’s in Communications from Wright State University and is working on her Master’s Degree in Business and Technology specializing in Management and Leadership from Capella University. She is also an Advanced Communicator with Toastmasters International.

ANDREA FOY Author of Hire Power: How to find, get, and keep a Job
Author Website:  www.andreafoy.com
Email:  info@andreafoy.com
Facebook:  www.facebook.com//HirePower
Twitter:   www.twitter.com/HirePower2010
E-Book order now:  http://penofthewriter.podbean.com/ebook-hire-power
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FREE KINDLE BOOK: Anybody’s Daughter by Pamela Samuels Young

Anybody’s Daughter
by Pamela Samuels Young

FREE FOR DOWNLOAD ON KINDLE

 

Is Anybody's Daughter Ever Safe?

Based on the real-life horrors faced by thousands of girls, award-winning author Pamela Samuels Young takes readers deep inside the disturbing world of child sex trafficking in a fast-paced thriller that educates as much as it entertains.


Thirteen-year-old Brianna Walker is ecstatic. She's about to sneak off to meet her first real boyfriend—a boyfriend she met on Facebook. But Brianna is in for a horrifying surprise because her boyfriend doesn't exist. Instead, Brianna unwittingly becomes the captive of a ring of drug dealers- turned-human traffickers who prey on lonely girls from dysfunctional homes. But they’ve made a big mistake in targeting Brianna because she doesn’t meet either of those criteria.


Brianna’s Uncle Dre, a man with his own criminal past, is determined to find the niece who is more like a daughter to him. Rather than sit back and rely on police to bring Brianna home, Dre scours the dark corners of Los Angeles looking for her. He is stunned to learn that the trafficking of children isn’t just happening in other countries. It’s occurring at epidemic levels right in his own backyard.

Dre is not alone in his desperate search. Loretha Johnson knows this world well. A social worker who previously lived “the life,” Loretha now dedicates her time to saving as many young girls as she can find. She turns out to be an invaluable resource for Dre, who ultimately gets a lead on The Shepherd, a mastermind in the trafficking world whose every move is fueled by ego and greed. Dre vows to bring The Shepherd's reign of terror to an end, even if he has to break the law to do it.

While Brianna makes a futile effort to thwart her captors, Dre is getting closer and closer to finding her. The woman he loves, attorney Angela Evans, knows the dangers faced by sexually exploited children because she represents them in juvenile court. Angela lends her moral support and, eventually, an important clue to Brianna’s whereabouts.

As he races against the clock, Dre ultimately comes up with a daring plan—one that puts many lives in danger, including his own. But will he find Brianna before it's too late?

FREE!  #ImageAward nominated Anybody's Daughter free on Kindle today! Sale ends 1/23. 

 

 Anybody's Daughter (Angela Evans Series No. 2)
Link:
  http://amzn.com/B00GC7UI8E

 

 

 

 

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The Black Author Network (BAN Radio) is a weekly online radio show that features authors and literary leaders three times per week to give the readers a blast of knowledge, wisdom, and empowerment. Our philosophy is one of positive self-image and empowerment. We are dedicated to promoting the advancement of multicultural, diverse books in all aspects of business and social networking.

Using author interviews as the theme for each show, book lovers get a first-hand look at the “behind the book” news, as the authors and host, Ella D. Curry, share the storyline of new book releases. We respect our readers’ intelligence and strive to deliver shows and books that enrich their lives. We come to the readers each week to invoke dialogues on increasing literacy for future generations, to enlighten the community on great books, and to empower our readers with the Gift of Knowledge!

Join us in serving as a collective voice committed to providing quality literature to an international audience. Tune in each Monday and Wednesday night, 8-10 pm EST at: BlogTalk Radio or call into the live radio show at: (646) 200-0402.

 

EDC Creations was founded by Ella D. Curry in 2000 as a event planning agency and transitioned into a full service literary themed PR firm in 2005. Ella D. Curry is the president of EDC Creations Media Group. She brings more than 25 years of PR and marketing experience to clients in film, music, publishing and corporate event planning. Her expertise as well as her love for all things literary, dynamic database of 165,000+  loyal readers, and collaborative approach with clients have earned her a reputation as a respected leader in the publishing industry.

EDC Creations produces virtual events, social networking opportunities, and provides innovative web media, which aided in creating strategic alliances with book clubs, authors, social network partners, and business owners around the world. Take a look at our packages today, go here.


Ella D. Curry is the producer of the Black Authors Network Radio Show.  Through the internationally syndicated online BAN Radio Show and Black Pearls Magazine, Ella has interviewed community leaders and celebrities such as: The View's Emmy® award-winning co-host, Sherri Shepherd, Byron Pitts Emmy® award-winning journalist for 60 Minutes, literary legends Dr. Maya Angelou, Sonia Sanchez, Walter Mosley, Eloise Greenfield and Hill Harper.
 
You are not alone.  We are here for you!  
We assist authors and businesses that are too busy to tackle the cyber- world or to take care of the behind the scenes activities of the day-to-day corporate front. We are virtual publicists, marketing specialists, book coaches and brand developers.  EDC Creations is determined to become one of the most powerful literary forces in the industry. Offering the self-published and independently published author the same quality of exposure as the traditionally published author. Let us make life just a little easier!




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A is for Anacostia by Dr. Courtney Davis

A is for Anacostia 
by Dr. Courtney Davis

A is for Anacostia
is a fun, colorful alphabet book for children of all ages. The story highlights the youth and activities in the Anacostia neighborhood, a vibrant community located in the southeastern quadrant of Washington, DC.


Book Review for A is for Anacostia 
“A is for Anacostia is an interactive and enjoyable book for children of all ages. It’s a great model for engaging youth to take pride in their community.” - Jon West-Bey, Executive Director, American Poetry Museum


About the Author
Dr. Courtney Davis
has been an avid reader since she was a young girl. As the daughter of parents who valued reading, she was surrounded with books, magazines and opportunities to create stories. She has a passion for working with students in urban areas helping them unleash their potential to become change-agents in their communities. Dr. Davis has also been a practitioner and advocate for children with disabilities and their families for more than 15 years. These experiences inspired her to create books that encourage children to read. A native of Chicago, Illinois, Dr. Davis now happily resides in Historic Anacostia. This is her first picture book. Visit her online at www.aisforanacostia.com.
Dr. Davis Website: www.aisforanacostia.com

A is for Anacostia by Dr. Courtney Davis
Genre: Children’s Literature; Children of all ages
Purchase:  http://www.aisforanacostia.com/buy.html


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Intimate Conversation with Dr. Courtney Davis

Intimate Conversation with Dr. Courtney Davis


Dr. Courtney Davis has been an avid reader since she was a young girl. As the daughter of parents who valued reading, she was surrounded with books, magazines and opportunities to create stories. She has a passion for working with students in urban areas helping them unleash their potential to become change-agents in their communities. Dr. Davis has also been a practitioner and advocate for children with disabilities and their families for more than 15 years. These experiences inspired her to create books that encourage children to read. A native of Chicago, Illinois, Dr. Davis now happily resides in Historic Anacostia. This is her first picture book. Visit her online at www.aisforanacostia.com

BPM: What led you to become a children’s book author?
As an educator and resident of Anacostia, I worked in a local elementary school in Ward 8. While working with Pre-K and kindergarten students, I wanted to find a way to connect the class work to our community. I tried to find existing material to use with a younger audience in local libraries however nothing existed. So, like most teachers, I created the material I needed to reach my students. I wanted to ensure that the students that live and play in Ward 8 were highlighted in a positive way.

BPM: Introduce us to your book and the main characters. Do you have any favorites?
This is my first book and I wanted to proudly represent my neighborhood. So often, negative messages are shared about the residents and community of Anacostia, located in Washington, DC. However, I wanted to share another perspective that highlights the positive behaviors of children and the popular places to visit. There are so many gems in the community and A is for Anacostia can be used as a map of awesome resources including the home of Frederick Douglass and the Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum. At the beginning of the school year, I was a tour guide for over 40 teachers and used the book to guide us to many landmarks and popular places easily accessible to children and adults in our community. We had a ball!!

BPM: What drew you to tackle the topics in your book?
I wanted to make sure children in the community had an opportunity to see themselves in a book. Not only can they recognize peers, they are familiar with many places that are just a few steps from their home or school. It is a win-win situation as it increases the self-concept and reinforces the alphabet at the same time!! On top of that, the vibrant illustrations guarantee to bring life to each page!

BPM: Does your upbringing or life experiences inspire your writing?
Absolutely!  I think Anacostia is the best kept secret in Washington, DC and I want to share it with everyone! There are so many beautiful places to visit and enjoy, including historical landmarks, a Smithsonian museum and Anacostia river. As a resident, I have the opportunity to walk or ride my bike to the same places that I introduce to fellow community members or new visitors. In addition, I have first-hand experience with some of our youngest residents and this book is my attempt to glorify their activities too.

BPM: How do you go about reaching new readers? 
In the winter of 2013, I initiated a book drive to place a copy of A is for Anacostia in the hand of every Pre-K student at Ketcham Elementary School. The purpose of the book drive was to increase literacy skills and home libraries for our youngest residents. Because book lovers residing in and out of Anacostia made donations to the children, we were able to meet our goal! Copies of A is for Anacostia were signed and supplied to each student and teacher in four Pre-K classrooms.

BPM: What would you like for readers to take away from your writing? 
After reading this alphabet book, I want children to be excited about learning and seeing African-American characters that look like themselves. In addition, I want them to adopt an attitude to explore their own neighborhood, and find a new activity. After a book reading, two first grade girls shared a message with me, “I want to visit Anacostia!” I can’t wait to welcome them to the neighborhood again.

BPM: What are your goals as a writer? Do you set out to educate or entertain? Illuminate a particular subject? Inspire?
Learning and having fun make an awesome combination! As a writer, I try to strike a balance to avoid preaching to kids while connecting new information to their prior knowledge. My goal is to continue to show characters that reflect students that I know and introduce educational concepts.

BPM: Share with us your latest news. How may our readers follow you online? 
I invite all your readers to visit my website: www.aisforanacostia.com  or the  A is for Anacostia Facebook page!  I regularly post upcoming reading events and appearances for both children and adults. In addition, I am excited to share that some of the characters from A is for Anacostia will be visiting a new location. They will travel to Chicago! Stay tuned as the adventure will be released in the spring! 

Purchase books from Dr. Davis Website: www.aisforanacostia.com 





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Intimate Conversation with Jamila T. Davis


Intimate Conversation with Jamila T. Davis


Jamila T. Davis, author of the Voices of Consequences Enrichment Series is a self-help expert, motivational speaker and a women's prison reform activist, who is currently a federal inmate. At age 25, she was a multimillionaire, high-flying real estate investor with ties to the hip-hop world. At age 31, she was sentenced to 12 1/2 years in federal prison for her role in a multimillion-dollar bank fraud scheme. While imprisoned, Davis has helped to change the lives of many through her inspirational books and cautionary tales based on her real-life experiences. For more information on Jamila T. Davis and to check out her latest memoir The High Price I Had To Pay visit www.voicesbooks.com or www.facebook.com/authorJamilaTDavis.
BPM:   Introduce us to your book, She's All Caught Up and tell us what makes it unique. 
Hello, my name is Jamila T. Davis. I am the author of She's All Caught Up, which is a memoir about my childhood. My book is a cautionary tale that exemplifies the early influences in my life, which ultimately swayed my thinking and turned me into a die-hard "money-chaser." Unlike typical urban books that glorify street life through a fictional character, my story is told from a true perspective. And, most importantly, it reveals the severe consequences of living life in the fast lane.

Here is the official introduction we are using to promote the book:  She's All Caught Up is a real-life cautionary tale that exemplifies the powerful negative influences that affect today's youth and the consequences that arise from poor choices. Young Jamila grew up in a loving middle class home, raised by two hardworking parents, the Davises, in the suburbs of Jamaica Queens, New York. Determined to afford their children with the luxuries that they themselves never had, the Davises provided their children with a good life, hoping to guarantee their children's success.

At first it seemed as though their formula worked. Young Jamila maintained straight As and became her parents ideal "star child," as she graced the stage of Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall in dance recitals and toured the country in a leading role in an off-Broadway play. All was copacetic in the Davis household until high school years when Jamila met her first love Craig- a 16 year old drug dealer from the Southside housing projects of Jamaica Queens.

As this high school teen rebels, breaking loose from her parents' tight reins, the Davises wage an "all-out" battle to save their only daughter whom they love so desperately. But Jamila is in too deep! Poisoned by the thorn of materialism, she lusts after independence, power and notoriety, and she chooses life in the fast last to claim them.  When this good girl goes bad, it seems there is no turning back!   Follow author Jamila T. Davis (creator of the Voices of Consequences Enrichment Series in her blazing memoir, She's All Caught Up!

BPM:   If you had to describe your book in one word, what would you call it? Why?
I would call my book a mirror, because it was written to cause readers to go within and reflect. At least one experience of Young Jamila will cause readers to relate to her struggles, regardless of their background, color or creed. I didn't hold back any of the truth of the events that occurred. I shared my strengths with my audience, as well as my weaknesses. I exposed the inner turmoil that kept me chasing inner fulfillment. My book reveals my dark secrets and my insecurities. I believe the pureness of my story, and its common similarities to the experiences of other females, will cause readers to reflect and explore their own characteristics, past influences and choices.

BPM:   Tell us a little about your life and your upbringing. 
I grew up in Jamaica, Queens- New York, in a middle class home. I was raised by both my parents, who were hard workers that migrated from the South. They overcame the barriers of poverty and racism and made a good life for themselves. Because they lacked certain opportunities growing up, they were determined to provide my brother and myself with the opportunities that they didn't have. I guess you could say my mother was like a stage mom. She had me enrolled in every activity you could think of from singing, dancing, and acting, to swimming, judo and tennis. She was determined that her kids would be well-rounded and successful. She raised me to have a ton of drive and ambition, because every day she had something different planned for us to do.

All was well in my household until high school years when I rebelled. I was introduced to the hood by my first boyfriend, a well known drug dealer, and that was all she wrote! I was hooked into life in the fast lane. I guess you could say, overnight I turned into the ultimate hustler. Instead of pursuing the plans that my parents had established for me, I choose to live a ghetto fabulous lifestyle. That's how I got caught up.

BPM:    Tell us why many people refer to you as a "get-money" chick? 
I grew up around many of my friends who became successful rappers, music industry executives, and just plain die hard hustlers. During my era street-life was glorified. I was mesmerized by this lifestyle and became determined to get a piece of the pie. I always had a knack for business, so it was easy to jump in the game. When I got my first taste of money and I saw the notoriety that it brought me, I fell in love with money. My passion caused me to quickly flourish, so I did a lot in a short period of time. By the time I was 25 years old, I was a multimillionaire and a lead financial go-to-person in the hip-hop music industry. 

Seeking after the accolades of my peers, I hung out with gangsters, rap stars and professional sports figures. I drove fancy cars, rocked all the latest fashions, and I had a blinged out jewelry collection that would put a seasoned, materialistic, rapper to shame. I became driven by material gain. If a new car came out, I had to be the one amongst all my peers to have it first. I drove a Maybach way before Rick Ross was ever a rapper. When I came through, I made it my business to turn heads. Besides the fact, I was a female doing big things. That was rare, so I stood out. My insatiable drive kept me shooting for the stars. That's how I became referred to as a "get-money" chick.





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Intimate Conversation with Jasmine Sheffield

Intimate Conversation with Jasmine Sheffield


Jasmine N.H. Sheffield, a loving mother and wife, is a resident of Virginia. She is a graduate of Florida A&M University where she received a B.S. in Computer Information Systems. She went on to receive her M.S. in Management Information Systems from the University of Illinois Springfield. Freshmen Fifteen is Jasmine’s debut novel. She has also written a self-help book titled Journey after School: A Guide to Starting Your Career and Managing Your Finances. She has enjoyed the writing process and has other books on the horizon. You can visit her website www.ourjourneypublishing.com for more information.

BPM: Introduce us to your book and the main characters. What makes each one special? 
In Freshmen Fifteen, Laila who is graduating from high school has planned to lose her virginity to her boyfriend. But, on graduation night when it is all set to happen her boyfriend is arrested. With her boyfriend away, Laila goes to college a virgin. Throughout the book, Laila meets different girl friends who have had different experiences with losing their virginity. Of her friends, Nicole is my favorite. She’s a free-spirit and not afraid to tell it like it is.

BPM: What drew you to tackle the questions or topics in Freshmen Fifteen?
For many virgins, the details of sex can be daunting especially around topics not covered in sex-ed. In Freshmen Fifteen, Laila transitioning from high school to college is an age range where these topics are most convoluted. To avoid the “Just don’t have sex” vibe many adults try to force into the heads of the youth, I want to provide a glimpse into the reality of sex.

BPM: Does your faith or education inspire your writing?
I’ve never been a writer, nor wished to publish a novel. It just so happened that my first book, Journey After School: A Guide to Starting Your Career and Managing Your Finances, was an idea suggested by a friend. Then one day, the idea of Freshmen Fifteen popped in my head. I’m a strong believer that God has a plan for us that may be different than the plan we have for ourselves. I’m being obedient and following His path.

BPM: Why did you choose an HBCU as the setting of the book?
I attended Florida A&M University, and my HBCU experience was amazing. By choosing an HBCU as the setting for Freshmen Fifteen I am able to give a glimpse into that experience. Hopefully, those who have a negative perception of HBCUs will be enlightened.

READ MORE HERE

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Intimate Conversation with Bobby Cenoura

Intimate Conversation with Bobby Cenoura


Bobby Cenoura is a literary artist born and raised in the Washington DC area. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business and social sciences. Bobby has been an avid storyteller since his early childhood. He is also familiar with black market economics. Bobby’s literature, influenced by experiences and imagination, is called “quasi urban”. In addition to street literature, Bobby also plans on ushering in a genre he calls “Male Angst”, which deals with men’s dating issues.

BPM: Introduce us to your book and the main characters. What makes each one special? Do you have any favorites?
There are four main characters, Marcus Richardson, Kim Han, Tyrell Jones, and Delonte Harris.  Marcus Richardson is in his early twenties during the main events in the book. He is the primary character that the story revolves around. He is special because he is street smart and book smart—a fisher of men. He adapts to his surroundings, and he knows how to handle himself around people his age and older generations.

Kim Han is also in her early twenties. She is the Korean woman who is the secondary character and Marcus’ love/friendship interest. She is special because she navigates a world between Korean, Korean American, and African American cultures. In addition, her father and mother own Sunbeam market, the liquor store/bodega which is central to the action in the novel.

Tyrell Jones is in his early twenties. He is Marcus’ best friend since childhood. He is a character who complements and foils Marcus—almost like Marcus’ child-like and immature side. He is special because he is unwillingly involved in events that cataclysmically affect Kim and Marcus.

Delonte Harris is a little older than Marcus and Tyrell. He is the neighborhood thug, who like Marcus, is very versatile street wise. He manages himself around people his age and the drug kingpins and older customers. He is the catalyst for conflict in the novel due to his unsavory dealings and disrespectful demeanor.

Those are the main characters, but a couple of my favorites are not the main characters, but auxiliary characters. Carlos Morales, mid 30s and Dominican, and Sobah, mid 40’s and African are two characters whose accents I write out in onomatopoeia. I love writing this way because it opens up my imagination comedy-wise. Example:

1. After P-nutt tackles Delonte to the ground Carlos shouts: “Towche doune! P’no!”   Translated: ‘Touch Down P-nutt’’ (accentuating the vowels)

2. After Delonte swears revenge on Marcus after a fight, Sobah overhears and comes to the aid (tense moment comic relief but serious):  “Don’t wahrry my little kneegas, we are all wahriahs in dis joint. I saw dat little thowg kneegah weet a blowdy mout, wall-kin’ downda street talkin’ sheet ‘bout chu kneegas. Sobah keep his peepo fram dengah, an I see da blowd on ya sheet kneega, so I know you facked daht kneega ahp.”
Translated:  “Don’t worry nephews, we are all warriors. I saw that thug bloodied up, talking about revenge. I got your back. I see blood on your hands [Marcus], so I know you did it.”

BPM: What drew you to tackle the topics in your book?
When I visited my father who lived in DC in the 90s I became intrigued about Asian store owners in predominately Black neighborhoods. Since I lived in a predominately multicultural suburb outside of the city, I was used to seeing Asians, but not against the backdrop of poverty. As a youth, whenever I saw poorness I saw blackness.

More interesting were the ways that the Asians and Blacks interacted--the bulletproof glass and the rotunda. On more than one occasion I noticed that Asians brought their children to work with them at these corner stores. I wondered how they felt and would they interact with people beyond the glass.

Later in life I would hear certain family members talk about Asians selling poison to Blacks because there was a “liquor store on every corner”.  As I got older I learned about the drug trade and black markets, I studied economics and some realities about owning businesses and I realized how the black market is a market, and the mentality of profits were the same regardless if one owned a store or sold contraband.

One day it hit me to combine the things that I learned and experienced into a fiction of sorts and out came Seoul Revelations. It originally was going to be called ‘Seoul Food’ because of how the two main characters got to know each other.



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Intimate Conversation with Monica McKayhan

Intimate Conversation with Monica McKayhan


Monica McKayhan
writes adult and young adult fiction and currently has 11 titles in print. The first book in her young adult series, Indigo Summer, was the launch title for Harlequin's imprint, Kimani TRU. Several of her Kimani TRU books have appeared on the American Library Association's Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers for consecutive years and ALA’s 2013 Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults. Indigo Summer also received a film option. Tropical Fantasy is her first romance title.

BPM: How did you initially break into the publishing industry? What road did you travel? How do you feel about self-publishing? 
MM: I was actually a member of a Toastmasters club learning to speak publicly. I knew that I was very close to breaking into the industry and as such needed to sharpen my public speaking skills. In Toastmasters, I met a man who was personal friends with a National Bestselling author. He told her about me, and connected us. She and I started communicating by email. I started sending her examples of my work, and she loved my writing. At the time I was working on my first novel, As Real As It Gets. And she told me that once I was finished, she wanted me to send it to an editor that she knew at BET Books. After I completed the novel, I sent it to the editor at BET and the rest is history. Although self-publishing is not my route, I believe it is a very strong route. I have a lot of respect for self-published authors, and think that most are successful because they understand the business and understand the grind.

BPM: What is your definition of success? Does money play a part in how you gauge success?
MM: My definition of success is achieving the things that are imbedded in my heart, mind and soul. And I don’t base that on what the industry defines as success. It’s a personal journey, and money isn’t the defining factor. It has to do with the things that I love, like writing and family. I write because I love it and I tell any aspiring authors that if you’re in it for the money, you’re in the wrong business. If someone walks away from a book that I’ve written and their life is better, then that’s success for me. And if my children finally get the things that I’ve taught them over the years, that’s success for me.

BPM: What are you most thankful for right now, today?
MM: Right now, I’m most thankful for wisdom. I’m finally in a place where I know exactly what I want and where I want to be in life and my writing career. I know my strengths and weaknesses, and I finally have a game plan.

BPM: What have you realized about yourself since becoming a published author?
MM: After writing mainstream fiction, young adult fiction and now romance – I realize that I was much more passionate in the beginning. I realize that I have to write the things that are most gratifying to me and that it’s imperative that it reflects in my writing. Writing is a journey and a learning experience, and there should be growth. I’ve grown up, and I know what I must write. I have to maintain that same passion that I had when I wrote my first novel because it reflects in my work. I also know that it’s imperative that authors educate themselves on the business side of the industry, and education is lifelong.

BPM: Introduce us to your book and the main characters. Do you have any favorites? 
MM: Tropical Fantasy is a romance novel about Sasha Winters and Vance Sullivan who meet at a wedding in the Bahamas. Sasha is her sister’s maid of honor, and Vince is the very handsome best man. Sasha’s a workaholic who has been hurt by love in the past, and has put up a shield against anything love related. Vince is determined to break through her hard exterior, and does. You can find Tropical Fantasy in paperback, on Kindle and Nook.

BPM: What compelled or inspired you to write this book? Why now? Ever experience writers block?
MM: Romance is a new genre for me. Tropical Fantasy was the book that sort of challenged me to let go of my inhibitions. After writing mainstream fiction and YA for some time, romance was something that was outside-of-the-box for me. My characters are typically flawed and the story might not always have a happy storyline. However in romance, you have a hero and heroine and the story is supposed to leave the reader with a happy feeling. That has been my greatest challenge. My characters usually experience hardship and have to overcome circumstances, but in romance I have to write from a different perspective. I often experience writers block, and when I do I simply walk away from the project for a little while. Go do something totally different and then come back to it. That works for me. Each author has their own way of conquering writer’s block, but that’s mine.

READ MORE HERE
 
 
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Intimate Conversation with Sonja Lewis


Intimate Conversation with Sonja Lewis

Author of The Barrenness, Sonja Lewis has appeared on CNN and The Tom Joyner Morning Show. She has also been featured in Black Enterprise, and in the media in Canada and the United Kingdom. A former reporter for The Albany Herald (Georgia), Sonja has also written for British newspaper The Guardian. Currently, she writes a blog for the Huffington Post, UK. A member of the Society of Authors, Sonja lives in London with her husband, Paul.

BPM: Introduce us to your book, The Blindsided Prophet, and the main characters. What makes each one special? Do you have any favorites?
The Blindsided Prophet is the story of a modern day prophet who is caught unawares by a tragic event when he is a teenager. This alters his life forever. Fifteen years later, at God’s bidding Isaiah Brown returns to Coffee, GA, to unravel the tragedy, make reparation and prevent an even worse tragedy.

The main character, Isaiah Brown, is probably my favorite because he is original. I don’t know anyone like him. Naturally, he had to come from somewhere so I must have drawn on characteristics of some of the world’s great people, some perhaps renown. In any case, he is unique. He is a modern-day prophet.

Also, I favor Mae Cook as she is so very much like many people I know—well meaning, good to the core, but gets it wrong a lot of times. At middle age, she learns valuable life lessons. Through Mae, we see that it is never too late to grow-up.

BPM: What drew you to tackle the questions or topics in The Blindsided Prophet?
My faith, I suppose is the short answer. I remember being called arrogant once by a young preacher when I talked of my own personal relationship with God. I wanted to show that faith is not just about religion, it is about dwelling/residing within yourself if you will. Deep within you meet God as and when you please. You just have to focus. There, you find the answers.


READ MORE HERE


 
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Intimate Conversation with Wali Akidele and Andrew Jones


Intimate Conversation with Wali Akidele and Andrew Jones


Wali Akindele was born and raised in North Philadelphia's Nicetown/Tioga section where he quickly learned dedication and perseverance. Fast forward to 2011 when he received a yellow envelope from the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility, inside was an untitled, unfinished manuscript sent by his close friend and now label mate Andrew Jones, who shortly after received a life imprisonment sentence. Wali believed in this untitled work of art so much that he read the unfinished novel three times. 

Finally mustering up the nerve to put his pen to the paper he completed the manuscript and named it “15th District Chronicles of the 19124.” After receiving accolade for his first attempt at writing he penned two more features, a short story called “Tha Choice is Urs....Memoirs of The Block,” the first edition of “Tha Choice is Urs” series, and “Milligrams A Philadelphia Epidemic.” Out of his love for literature and his new found love for writing Wali Akindele, and his wife Ilene Akindele founded Prolific Concept Productions. Merging his old indoctrination of the hustle, and his entrepreneurial spirit Wali strives to make Prolific Concept Productions the publishing company of the future....

Andrew Jones is a new author from Philadelphia, PA. His awkward style of writing, and rapid pace of storyline left publisher, Wali Akindele, with no alternative other than to extend a deal. With the help of Prolific Concept Productions, Andrew’s first novel “15th District Chronicles of the 19124,” was set to hit stores in February, 2014. Andrew is currently working on his second novel. With an all-star roster of authors he aspires to reach for new heights and embrace deeper lessons. 

Andrew is best described as being humble and truly ambitious. He is not afraid to explore subjects that are considered controversial by most authors. Andrew promises to touch on every subject that crosses your mind: race, love, sickness, brutality, mental health and much more. Persuading more people to wrote and read more is a personal goal of Andrew. He encourages everyone to help fight the war against literacy.

BPM: Introduce us to your current work. Do you have any favorite characters?
Thank you for honoring us with this interview, Ella. My name is Olawale (Wali) Akindele and I am the C.E.O. of Prolific Concept Productions LLC. I am also the co-author of “15th District Chronicles of the 19124,” along with Andrew Jones. This novel is our first feature that Prolific Concept Productions will be dropping. I would like to introduce to you Mike, Reese, and Rell. Mike ultimately serves as the subsequent leader of the trio being the most strategic out of the group. His ambition, and hunger for more is equivalently shared by Maurice (Reese) Brown who plays the position of Mike's second in command / enforcer. 

Reese's thirst for the fast life and pretty women are enhanced when he is introduced to the psych medicine Xanex (zannies) which makes things only take a turn for the worst. It is said the tragedy comes in three's first Mike commits a murder putting the crews organizations in limbo, second Reese is apprehended for the murder Mike unjustly committed refusing to flip on his best friend and mentor, and finally third counterpart of the squad Slim who played the role of the teams supporting cast carrying a third of the workload is abruptly killed in a botch robbery gone wrong…

To be honest my favorite character is a split between Mike, Reese, and Rell who is Slim's son because all 3 of the characters are based on real people that I personally know. Mike actually is loosely based around some of my characteristics…

BPM: Which character or topic in the book can you identify with the most? Why?
I think I can personally identify with Reese and Mike the most because first and foremost I am Mike, and Mike is me to a certain degree. I would like to thank Andrew Jones for loosely basing this character around some my personality traits when I was at a particular point in my life. The topic that reenacts a time when the Frankford section of the city was at its worst, during this period Andrew Jones, and I was knee deep in the middle of the mayhem that existed in the 15th District of Philadelphia.

BPM: Does your upbringing of life experiences inspire your writing?
Absolutely! The city of Philadelphia is a rough place well known as the murder capital of America for years to come. To survive in such a harsh environment there is no way that you will not have a story to tell, so yes I definitely use my upbringing in my material.

BPM: How do you go about reaching new readers? What would you like for readers to take away from your writing?
I personally take responsibility to bring forth the gritty reality that looms largely over the city of Philadelphia, shedding light on the ills of the streets with the possibility to effect change. Sometimes all it takes is to pull the wool from over the eyes of 1 individual to effect that transition of change…

BPM: How do you feel about eBooks? Have they helped your business to grow?
I think eBooks are good for business as far as cost sufficiency especially being a new publishing company.
As far as potential growth of course eBooks, it put you on a much larger scale. On a worldwide level in my opinion it creates a conveniences unmatched to anything thing that a bookstore could provide.

BPM: What are your goals as a writer? Do you set out to educate or entertain? Illuminate a particular subject? Inspire?
My goal as a writer is not only to entertain, but to educate the consumer of what life is like on the other side of the tracks. The news doesn't always cover the story from the point of view of the people that actually suffer from the negativity that they are forced to live around, and the poverty that makes the people involved except these same negative realities as the norm.

BPM: How can readers discover more about you and you work?
Twitter and Instagram: @ProlificConcept
Prolific Concept: www.prolificconceptpro.com
FB: https://www.facebook.com/ProlificConceptProductions



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The Colors Trilogy by K.R. Raye


The Colors Trilogy  by K.R. Raye

The Colors Trilogy
follows three college friend as they strive for their goals.  There's: Naïve, romantic, biracial Melody Wilkins who aims to find true love at college just like her parents. Melody brings the heart and sense of hope to the story.  No-nonsense Imani Jordan strives for good grades and a chemical engineering degree. Imani's the common sense, tell-it-like-it-is conscience.  Lance Dunn is only serious about two things: football and protecting his girls, Melody and Imani. Lance is practical and fiercely loyal; he keeps them grounded with the male perspective.

Book 1. The Colors of Friendship:  Three college friends search for true love, NFL fame, and a successful engineering career.  Will one friend’s quest for happiness endanger all three of their lives?  After the torrents of jealousy, sex, and abuse subside, will their friendship survive…The Colors of Friendship? 

Book 2. The Colors of Love:
  After their lives are threatened, three college friends attempt to continue their search for true love, NFL fame, and a successful engineering career.  When the dynamics of their relationships change, will their friendship survive…The Colors of Love?

Book 3. True Colors: 
After tragedy strikes, Imani, Melody, and Lance try to rekindle their college friendship.  Can they move forward towards happiness or will ghosts from their past haunt them?  When life’s challenges arise what are your…True Colors?  Coming March 25, 2014!

Purchase books at:  http://www.amazon.com/K.-R.-Raye/e/B00DY5G6QU 






About the Author
K.R. Raye
lives in Maryland with her husband and two sons. She grew up in Kansas City, attended college in New York, and has resided in Los Angeles, Phoenix, and New Zealand.  Throughout her diverse career working as a mechanical engineer, adjunct professor, and in sales, she continues to weave her love of marketing, computer information systems, and operations together with her passion for writing.  That diverse experience influences her writing style to traverse the contemporary, horror, romance, drama, mystery, and sci-fi genres. 


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Jamila T. Davis' Memoir She's All Caught Up

She's All Caught Up by Jamila Davis

 She's All Caught Up is a cautionary tale for young people enamored by the fast life and the older folks that love them. This memoir tells of the negative influences that swayed the early life of author Jamila T. Davis (creator of the Voices of Consequences Enrichment Series). She is currently serving a 151 month sentence for her role in a multi-million dollar bank fraud scheme.

Young Jamila grew up in a loving, middle class home. Her hardworking parents, the Davises, overcame the barriers of poverty and racism faced by African Americans in the segregated South. From the back wood shacks of the rural south, the Davises migrated north, making Jamaica Queens, New York their new home. They drove themselves relentlessly. By education and endless hard work, they attained their portion of the American dream.
Purchase your copies. Available formats: epub, mobi, pdf, rtf, lrf, pdb, txt

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Featured Adult Read: Twisted Vows of Seduction by N'TYSE

Twisted Vows of Seduction  by N'TYSE
PURCHASE BOOKS BY N'TYSE


Previously in Twisted Seduction, thirty-two-year-old Denise Jackson sacrifices her nine years of marriage to pursue a three-year affair with her multimillionaire client, Greg Adams. To keep things intact, she orchestrates the perfect twisted diversion by allowing her husband and best friend to carry on a full-fledged affair. But once everyone's dirty mattresses gets aired out, every player in the game starts to feel the heat, and what seems to be picture-perfect happiness is inevitably one twisted illusion.

One year later in Twisted Vows of Seduction...
Still mourning the death of his lover, Denise, Greg Adams conspires to leave his wife, Vivian, for a woman who resembles his departed mistress. Could it really be that his true love has come back to him, or has he fallen victim to a twisted game of deceit and seduction clandestinely arranged by no one other than his own vengeful wife?
     
A torrid affair with her best friend's husband, Jeff, has scarred Nadine Collins for life. Jeff's unwillingness to commit pushes her into the arms of another man, but he has a few skeletons in his own closet that could rob her of her very existence.
       
Ménage, an aspiring actress, has her sights set on Hollywood. She will do anything to ensure her rise to the top, including robbing Jeff of all the life insurance money he collected after his wife died. But a blast from the past slows her down. When Jeff comes running to her rescue, it proves to be the perfect setup.
   
The real twisted games are just beginning!


Twisted Vows of Seduction by N'Tyse




MEET THE AUTHOR
N'Tyse is the erotic romance author of several best-selling novels. She is also executive producer and director of the upcoming documentary film Beneath My Skin which was filmed in her hometown Dallas, Texas. While N'Tyse, pronounced entice, spells out exotic seduction, the true significance behind her name takes on an entire new meaning. The acronym translates to Never Tell Your Secrets ?a message she envelops within her stimulating taboo tales.

The author's passion for writing dates back to a very young age where she found poetry, music, and creative writing as an outlet. In 2007 N'Tyse ambitiously penned and self-published her freshmen novel My Secrets Your Lies. MSYL and its sequel Stud Princess Notorious Vendettas, went on to grace many bestsellers lists, including The Dallas Morning Newspaper and Black Expressions. Determined to see her works reach national and international audiences and markets, she pitched her junior project to a traditional publisher. Twisted Seduction quickly landed N'Tyse a publishing deal with Strebor / Simon & Schuster.

A private banker and financial counselor for over 12 years, N'Tyse currently juggles her literary career as a fulltime mom, wife, and filmmaker, while also pursuing her bachelor's degree in creative/screenwriting and business entertainment. Her literary contributions have been featured in magazines and several bestselling anthologies, including Zane Presents PP2 Missionary No More, Chocolate Flava 3, and Gutta Mamis. N'Tyse currently resides in Dallas, Texas where she is hard at work on her next novel and film project.

www.ntyse.com
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Chapter Excerpt: Twisted Vows of Seduction
"Daddy where's, Ebony?" Deandra asked the instant she walked through the door. She hadn't seen Ménage's car and Jeff knew she would be looking for her. Especially considering how well Deandra seemed to take to her.

"She's not here," Jeff said as he took his keys and cell phone out of his pockets and laid them on the table. "And she won't be back." Just that quick he'd saved himself from having to answer a million questions.

"But...I thought the two of you were getting married."

Jeff's face seemed to swell. "Married!" He'd banned that word from his vocabulary months ago. So as his cheekbones pushed his eyes into a squint, he looked at her wondering where in the hell that ludicrous idea had come from.
   
"Deandra, why would you think Ebony and I were getting married?" 
 
"Because she told me you were."
  
Jeff snatched off his tie. The anger rising inside of him had his blood boiling. He clenched his jaws.
 
"Ebony told you we were getting married?" He wanting to make sure he'd heard her right the first time.
  
Deandra nodded profusely. Not an ounce of doubt in her face. "She told me I would be the flower girl and that Nadine..."
 
"Nadine?" Jeff shot.    
 
"Yes, Daddy. She said that Nadine was going to be her maid and that she would get to hold her dress as she walked down the aisle."
 
"She lied to you, Deandra, and she used you for information!" He was furious.  
 
Deandra appeared saddened. "Daddy, please don't be mad at me. She told me to pinky swear not to say anything because it was supposed to be a surprise." 
 
Jeff shook his head and walked over to hug his daughter. "Daddy's not mad at you, baby. I'm mad at myself because I should have never brought her here." He kissed his daughter on the forehead. He wished like hell that he had seen this one coming. He was upset with himself more than anything because he'd given her the benefit of the doubt. He thought he was helping her. Now he wondered if she really had been robbed or if it was all part of her scheme to rob him.  
 
"Go on and do your homework," he said. "I need to handle some business." 
 
"Okay, Daddy."  
 
Jeff picked up his phone to call Nadine. He needed to fix this because she was the last person he wanted to believe this nonsense. Not so much that her input would have mattered had he chosen to walk that path again, but she deserved the truth. And the truth was, he wasn't marrying anybody. Not today, not tomorrow, or years to come.
 
"This is Nadine." 
 
"Are you busy? I had something I needed to straighten out."
 
"Actually...yes."
 
"Here, baby, let me get that for you," the male's voice in the background called out.
 
"Thank you," Nadine said, obviously switching her attention from Jeff to whoever she had been conversing with before his call.
 
"Ma Ma..."
 
Jeff froze in his steps. That was his son. 
 
"Nadine where are you?"
 
"Jeff, can this wait until later?"
 
"Where are you with my son?" He didn't mean to sound as angry as it came out. 
 
As if muffling her voice to speak, she asked, "What's so important that you need to talk to me right now?"
 
"I'm coming over."
 
"We're not home."
 
"I want to see my son!" Jeff could hear the rounds of laughter in the background and it made his stomach churn. 
 
"Leonard, I'm going to step out for a minute, baby. I'll be right back." 
 
Jeff could hear her heels patter across the floor. There was an echo as she moved from one area to the other, but even in the distance, Jeff could hear his son laughing, playing, and enjoying, this other man.
 
"What has gotten into you?" Nadine lit into him. "It's only Monday, and all of a sudden, you want to see your son."
 
"Don't do that."
 
"Don't do what? Tell you how I really feel for a change?" She didn't give him time to respond. "I'm sick of you playing part-time daddy to Canvas when it's convenient for you! He needs a father, Jeff. A father! So why don't you, Deandra, and your new fiancée, go on with your happy lives, and let me do what's best for my son. You can clock back in on Friday!"


(  Continued...  )

Twisted Vows of Seduction by N'TYSE Excerpt. © 2013.  Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.  Do not reproduce, copy or use without the author's written permission. Copyright infringement is a serious offense. This excerpt is used for promotional purposes only. Share a link to this page or the author's website if you really like this sneak peek.

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