Today is a Great Day: I’m Published!

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Ok, so I’m fully aware that a lot of people like to play it cool and act like their accomplishments are no big deal. I’m not one of those people, so I’m shouting it from the roof tops.  I’M PUBLISHED! It’s been a long time coming. I’ve dreamed of this moment since I was a little girl, and let me tell you, when your dreams come true it takes a while to fully understand that it’s all real. This. Is. Happening. 

Can you tell I’m excited? So much so, that I haven’t even given you the title of the book! It’s called ‘Voices from the Block: A Legacy of African-American Fiction’It’s a phenomenal collection of short stories written by seven amazing women, one of whom is yours truly. Of course, you do understand that I’m a little biased. But hey, if you don’t toot your own horn every once in a while, who will? So let me continue. When you read this collection I believe you’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll shake your head in disbelief, you’ll buck your eyes in shock, you’ll FEEL something. Hopefully, you won’t do all of these things at once. That would be a problem.

I poured pieces of my heart and soul into my contributions to this anthology, as did all of the authors that are featured in ‘Voices from the Block’. I truly hope our words speak life to dead places, and create new winds of thought to stir up stagnant minds. Yes, that is a lyrical way of saying I hope it blows your frickin’ mind. See? I’m a word smith. Don’t you want to see how I get down in this book? You saw this coming right? Get your copy via Amazon here.

But seriously, I’m grateful to each one of you for taking time to read my ramblings and ‘visit’ with me every once and while. As you can probably imagine, I’ll be posting more information about this publication in the near future. Just give me a little time to come down off of this cloud of pure ecstasy first.

Btw, don’t be shy. Like my Facebook page, so we can stay in touch!

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Guest Blogger: Grace Linton of ‘Just Some Important Words’!

I’m thrilled to have the fabulous poet Grace Linton sharing some of her poignant words with us today! Check out her blog ‘Just Some Important Words’ for more awesome poetry.

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Love and Loss

She stood in the cold waiting
As usual, for her mother to open the door
Awaiting her smile and greeting
When she noticed blood on the floor

In absolute fear, she searched for her key
Opened the door and rushed in
Dreading what she would see
Yet not letting the fear win

She couldn’t think of them in their last moments, pleading
Smothering her feelings, she climbed the stairs… and froze.
For before her lay her mother, bleeding
Few inches away from her father- adding to her woes

She stood there, with a fixed gaze
The people she loved the most, murdered
Everything seemed in a haze
As to despair, she surrendered

She shook them, carelessly
Knowing her attempts were in vain
Ended up crying her heart out hopelessly
She couldn’t bear the pain

Even after several years, she couldn’t love again
She saw the murderer dead
But, she couldn’t ward off the pain
Or help herself when she’d be hopelessly sad

She learned the meaning of loss and love
As a part of her died that day
Every day she searched them up above
And, for them she would pray

-Grace Linton

Faith Simone says: Did anyone else get chills? Talk about painting a vivid picture with words! Tell us what you think below.

How Do You Know When You’re Done?

On knowing when your novel is complete…

Live to Write - Write to Live

guysanddolls             I’ve been working Ellen , a novel, for well over two years, and the drafts are now coming thick and fast. I just finished another, one that’s finally finished enough for my first reader – who wept at the opening, it’s that good. But it’s still not finished.

This first reader has marked what really works, has asked questions where he’s lost the thread, and has pointed out places where he needs and/or wants more, and other places that simply told too much. (I’ll follow Elmore Leonard’s advice here and try to leave out the places readers skip.)

While my first reader’s been reading the book, I’ve been doing other things: I took a short vacation, fulfilled some civic obligations as an elected official, went snow shoeing with my puppy and did my taxes. Tomorrow, I’ll clean my studio and start over. Again.

Those of you who have been…

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