Stepping Into My Own – Your Own

We’ve enjoyed a full month of celebrating Black History. I’ve been enlightened, informed, and certainly I have enjoyed all that EDC-creations offered during the Black History Online Month event. Kudos to Miss Ella D. Curry!From this month long celebration many things have been birthed in my spirit. Which leads to my blog for this week.  Listening to so many talented, gifted, blessed, entertaining, and all out remarkable people has been mind boggling for me.  We possess so much talent, so many gifts that the world is in need of knowing about, reading about, hearing about and learning about.  We have so much to share, so much to give, so much to pass on to our children, to our future.

It’s time to Step Out.  Step Out Into Your Own. It’s time for me to Step Out Into My Own. It’s time to grab hold of the dream and place it into a real, functioning, existing piece of our lives.  It’s for you and me to Step Into Our Own by making sure the future of our children and our children’s children is secured.  Now is the time to make a difference.  Now is the time to stop ‘talking about it’ and start ‘being about it’. We have much to offer, not only by means of the literary world, but the political world, the world of science, techonology and space.  We have doctors, lawyers, astronauts, brain surgeons, inventors, scientists, athletes, great literary authors, plus more, more and more!

As a people, we can make this world a better place, when we learn that we must first take a step into the right now. Take a step into our future by starting today. Take a step into our dreams and bring them back into the realm of reality.  Force our dreams to come true.  I must first Step Into My Own before I can reach out and help someone else, especially a child.  Most children learn and retain more by watching others.  It’s been said that no matter how much we teach our children, that they do most of their learning by watching what we do.  How then, can we encourage them to pursue the desires of their hearts when we have given up on our dreams, and allowed them to be snuffed out and placed on the dusty shelves of our frightened minds?  How can we tell them to believe, trust, and have faith in God, when all they see when they look at us is fear, self-condemnation and a lack of faith in the very God we tell them to cling to?  How can we, as a people, tell them to help one another when all they see when they look at us is a spirit of jealousy and envy over the accomplishments and achievements of our brothers and sisters?  How can we, I ask you, guide them in a direction that will point the way to doing and being whatever they choose to be or become in life, if when they look at us, they see us escaping in a sea of drugs and alcohol to hide the fear of failure that camps within our minds. 

When will you and I, me and you, understand and grasp hold of the fact that tomorrow really is not promised to no man, woman, not even a child?  We are a dying people.  Death is ineveitable for each of us, no matter of our race, socio-economic class, color, education, or position.  We are all headed in the same direction. So, while we live, while the blood runs warm in our veins, while we have the ability and the capability, while we have the source, the means and the talents; while we have these things, now is the time to teach our children to grasp on to every single moment of life that they possess.  Now is the time to teach them that they do have what it takes to make good things happen.  Teach them that: One person CAN change the world.  One person CAN change a community.  One person CAN be a leader of millions!  One person CAN do what another dared not do.  One person CAN…But only if I take the first step.  Only if I Step Into My Own…Can You Step Into Your Own!  It has to start with one step.  Why not start with making it – Your Step?

You just read: Words According to Shelia-E

Author of Novel by Shelia E. LipseyNovel by Shelia E. Lipsey

Is Life Really as It Seems?

Back by popular demand–Life is Never as it Seems by J.J. Michael (Genesis-Press/Kensington March 2008), is now in mass market paperback. Purchase at all major bookstores and online at Amazon.com.

Lindy Lee’s life changed forever during the summer of 1967.Raised in a strongly traditional religious environment, she suddenly finds herself having extraordinary paranormal experiences that leave her bewildered and frightened. Her grandfather, the minister of a large Baptist church, and her mother do everything they can to suppress Lindy’s intense psychic and healing abilities. In addition, she finds herself drawn to Nick, who has his own dark secrets, and to the mysterious and mystical Paul. Follow Lindy’s harrowing journey as she discovers a world of theology and spirituality through the teachings of a New Age group, called the Awakeners, and as she faces the love and betrayal of those closest to her.

*****by RAWSISTAZ Reviewers Intense Reading-With a mixture of paranormal and scripture revelations we’re treated to an exquisitely written novel.

Discussion questions:

1. Have you ever been betrayed by someone you loved or trusted?

2. Have you had a relationships that you preceived as one way only to find out something else?

3. Have you had to choose between your family’s religious faith and your own?

4. Have you ever had a psychic moment or two? Tell me about it.

www.jjmichael.org

Based on actual events: Village Vengeance w/Author Ingrid Brown

 

What if one man terrorized your small town? A town that had never been tainted by gruesome events. What if you could never see his face, and what if he was always near? Author Ingrid Brown captures all the horrid events of one man’s reign of terror on a small town in Oklahoma. I myself read the book in two days, because that’s just how captivating it was. I later found out that this story is based on the true story about a serial rapist who terrorized a city neighborhood..

I do recommend this book to everyone that I know. Also Ms. Brown’s book was turned into an Indie film. Backcorner Productions produced the Film. Not only is Ms. Brown an amazing author she is also an amazing person. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Wichita State University and a Masters degree in Social Work from the University of Oklahoma.

Ms. Brown has worked in a number of fields including adoptions, mental health, higher education and as a medical social worker. Presently, she is employed as a Social Worker for a hospice agency and is an adjunct professor for Tulsa Community College. I set up an interview with Ms. Brown, you may view the questions and answers below. Ms. Ingrid Brown is an author who well deserves recognition for her work. You may buy Village Vengeance at Amazon.com, and everywhere books are sold.

 

 

 

 

 

 

How did you get the idea for Village Vengeance?

Village Vengeance is a work of fiction, however, it is based on actual events. Of course, the names have been changed and the locations are purposely omitted to protect the innocent. I am the main character, Janiece, and I tell the story from my point of view.

I understand there is a movie to Village Vengeance. Tell me about that.

The movie Village Vengeance was based on a short story I wrote and shared with friends of mine. At the time, I did not know they were interested in filming. However, they informed me of their interest and convinced me to allow them to do a movie based on my short story. After the screen play was done and the making of the movie was in process, people began to ask where the book could be purchased. It was at that time that I decided to expand the story into a short novel.

Where was it filmed?

In Oklahoma. Tulsa, Muskogee and Bristow.

Name the director and producer.

The movie was produced by a company called Back Corner productions.

Tell me about you?

I have loved to write since I was a child. I wrote short stories when I was young and worked on the school newspaper and small community newspaper when I was in high school. However, life out in the way of my writing and I focused on my career as a Social Worker in order to provide for myself and my son. Now that he is an adult, I have again begun to write and I am loving it.

Upcoming projects?

Because there has been a great deal of interest in the character in Village Vengeance named Sadie, I am going to write a book about her. It will be entitled Miss Sadie’s Song. I hope to complete a book of short stories in the near future as well.

For More about the Movie Village Vengeance Please click the poster below.

Some Truth in the Stereotypes

A couple of times a year I volunteer with a Phoenix, Arizona non-profit called Body Positive. The purpose of this organization is to support AIDS/HIV research and provide services to those affected by the disease.

From the outside looking in, this agency appears to have many affluent donors, many of whom lead alternative lifestyles. It’s been a long time since AIDS/HIV was considered a gay disease. However, many members of the gay community support the work of this agency.

Body Positive hosts many events throughout the year in the attempt to raise funds for AIDS/HIV research, clinical medicine trials and various services. Some of the events include a day of beauty at Rolf’s Salon, a upscale home tour and a annual fund-raising gala with silent auction.

For the last four years I have participated in the Body Positive Home Tour of Life.  Essentially,
the agency development director recruits various affluent residents who are willing to allow a parade of complete strangers to enter their home for six hours in order to view the lush landscapes and high-end interior design of their homes. Usually ten to twelve homes are arranged for the tour. Tickets are sold for $100 a piece with all proceeds going to fund Body Positive programs.

Every year the homes on the tour runs the gamut from traditional to eclectic. One house had
a shrine dedicated to Kachina dolls while another had a water fountain spraying from the roof into the pool off the side of the mountain.

The one home where I was stationed had belonged to one of the original American Airline stewardesses.  Her route took her from Los Angeles to Japan and as a result, her house had heavy Asian influences in the decor.

I was stationed at the door to greet the guests. Most of the guests were also middle to upper  class  business people and entrepreneurs. There were many designers and architects. During the day, a young African American man dressed in all black greeted me at the door. During the training we were advised to look for the proof of ticket purchase but to not actually ask for it. I didn’t see the ticket on this young man and as with other guests I did not ask him for one. In the few moments I greeted him I instantly knew something wasn’t right but at the same time I didn’t want to perpetuate the myth that only upper middle class white people would be interested in an event such as this.

I let him in but watched with uncertainty as he briskly walked through the house. A short time later, an older African American woman with a teen-aged girl and several young children greeted me at the door. It was apparent that they were probably accompanying the young man that had entered earlier. From the questions the older lady asked, it was apparent that she wasn’t aware that this event was a fundraiser. In a short amount of time I determined that she believed that she was touring an open house. All the while I was addressing this woman, the CEO/President of the agency had followed the young man to the back of the house. This associated group took a quick tour of the front of the house and left as the CEO was advising the young man he had to leave. After calling her a bitch in front of everyone present, he finally left. Shortly after, I learned that he had been in the back bedrooms of the house opening cupboards and closets.

After the group left, I realized my internal conflict. It was obvious that the group did not belong. Being African American myself I wanted to believe this group had a legitimate reason for being there. Once they left, I wondered if the other volunteers who I had not met in the previous years of my participation would think these people were associated with me in some way. I also felt disgusted that this young person embarrassed himself and embarrassed his people when he was in fact the one trepassing. What kind of environment allows people to feel justified in attacking others who refuse to be disrespected? In that instant, that young person bowed down to every low expectation  whites had about our people as a whole. In that instant there was truth in the stereotype.

Obama Ain’t Black Enough: Rhonica’s Notebook:By Rhonica Wesley

I was just casually scanning the internet for info on the 2008 campaign, when I ran across an article that said Barack Obama was not black enough. Of course I was shocked and at the same time thinking here we go again. Honestly the man did not choose his nationality, could they be speaking of that? Perhaps they meant his mannerism. I scanned around some more and saw “Obama white power with a black face.” That’s just horrible. Instead of shooting this man down we should admire what he is doing. instead we are finding fault in him early because he does not wear gators in different colors and have a press-n-curl. In this article that I read It said that other blacks who had run such as, the Revernd Al Sharpton were Black enough  Ok so by now you know that i’m not only laughing I’m really confused.

Don’t get me wrong Al sharpton Is great… when it’s time to march when such events occur like “Jena 6.” He has a way of getting things done, but do we really want him in the white house?  Running a country has a lot more to do with than color or mannerism. One false move from our leader and the world could end in a heart beat. being president is not a job to be taken lightly and given to someone who we think will be for “us”. Wake up, we can’t even control our neighborhoods just yet. To me both Mr. Obama and his wife don’t deserve the slandering. We as blacks have instilled in ourselves so long what is black and what is white until we forget that every one is different. You mean to tell me just because I speak correctly and may every once and a while enjoy classical music that I am not black enough. So i’m guessing these same people who are saying that Obama is not black enough will vote for Hilary Clinton.  Remember this, just because her husband was great in office does not mean she will do things like he did.

Half of us do not vote anymore anyways. We keep saying “Child I need to go to the courthouse and vote.” but we never make it. Then when things start to happen we want to get mad at work and start snapping at customers and co-workers. Martin Luther King went through a lot for us to be able to vote, and we don’t even do so. I think that it is sad that the generation before us had to fight and get fought just for us to have the privileges we have, and we don’t even use them.

Persoanally I wouldn’t care If mickey mouse got the job… just keep Bush and his drunken twins out.  Anyone who makes up words like recordify…does not need to be running a country, or for that fact a corner store.

*The humor in this article is just what it is humor…we know how some people like to burn peoples cds because they said something about BUSH… burn my books if you want it will only draw attention to me…..this is in no way a publicity stunt *smirk*

The Aura of Love

kathy-marsh.jpg Paranormal romance has an invigorating and new face in the widely talked about The Aura of Love. Kathy J. Marsh writes with an undertone of suspense and has penned a great novel filled with uprising climax. Marsh introduces to her reader, two Auralites who have issues similar to an inter-racial couple dating outside the realm of their race. The fact that they are purple and blue and that someone is revealing all their secrets will lure you deeper into this novel. Marsh keeps the tension ongoing and the suspense rising in what has become the best paranormal romance.    

Kathy J. Marsh, a native of Wilmington now resides in Charlotte, NC and is passionate about her writing. Readers, book clubs and reviewers are continuing to rave over Marsh’s talented ability to stir emotions in her novel, The Aura of Love.  The Aura of Love, has received numerous literary awards since its release. These include: A 2007 IPPY Award Winner in Multicultural Fiction, A 2007 African American Literary Award Nominee in Romance, and A 2007 Blackrefer.com Reviewer’s Choice Award in Science Fiction.  

Kathy J. Marsh is also nominated for Best Female Author in the 2008 INFINI Literary Awards.  

kathy-marsh-novel.jpg

Dorothy Goins:  Kathy, you have chosen to write in the genre of paranormal romance. Can you tell us what motivated you to write in this genre? 

KJM: I have always loved reading supernatural books. Some of my favorite authors are in this genre, so when I fell in love with writing, it was a natural progression. Plus, it provided the opportunity for some suspense since my beings want to keep their existence secret. 

DG: “The Aura of Love” has received numerous and raving reviews. That has to make you proud of your accomplishment. Share with us your feelings the day you received word that your novel won its first award. What award did you receive first? 

KJM: I don’t know that I can make anyone understand the excitement, joy and gratitude I felt when I won each one of the awards. I skipped around on air for weeks, especially after the first one, which was the IPPY Award. 

DG:  The Aura of Love has the flavor of romance in it. How would you describe your creation of the main characters Jace and Remy who are from two different cultures? In the novel, both characters are referred to as Auralites but what makes them different is their color. Emphasize on this for us so we can understand the concept you used to bring this story into fruition. 

KJM: The inspiration for this story came from an article in Essence that stated more and more black women were dating outside the race and they wanted to read stories about themselves. To do that, I decided to leave black and white behind and use my love for the supernatural by creating beings with a visual difference, like our skin color, and by giving them cultural differences that approximate ours here in America. 

DG: Are you currently working on any projects or novels that we should be on the lookout for and can you briefly tell us if you will remain a writer in the paranormal genre? 

KJM: Yes, I’m currently working on my next book, Suddenly Younger, which is about a middle-aged woman who finds that she’s suddenly getting younger. As she tries to figure out what’s happening with her, and why, I explore feminine ageism. Once she gets involved with a much younger man, who just happens to be her doctor, I explore secrets and the dynamic between an older woman and a younger man. The fact that she’s chronologically older, but physically younger, adds a new twist. Thanks to my many fans, a sequel to The Aura of Love is up after Suddenly Younger. I definitely plan to stay in the paranormal genre. 

DG: Your style of writing has been compared to L.A. Banks, but I also think it is very similar to the gifted writing style of Octavia Butler. Briefly talk about what similar feedback you have received from others who have read your work.  

KJM: One recent reader said something that was especially gratifying for me. He said, “She’s neither Terry McMillan, nor Octavia Butler – but a blissful amalgamation of the two.”  Wow, right? 

DG: What are some of the feedback you receive from readers who connect with you after having read your novel? 

KJM: Readers have said they like the character development—they feel like these are characters they know. They say the suspense keeps them on the edge of their seats while they try to figure out who’s betraying the Auralites. They appreciate the parallels between the Auralites’ cultural issues and our own. And women love Jace and want to know if he’s based on someone in my life. Don’t I wish! He’s a complete figment of my imagination.  

Thanks Kathy, for allowing me the opportunity to introduce readers alike to your excellent style of writing. For those who, like me, have read, The Aura of Love, this is truly a wonderful and enlightening experience to breach into your world.  To learn more about Kathy J. Marsh, please visit her online at http://www.kathyjmarsh.com