Meet Author and Publisher Wahida Clark

Meet Author and Publisher Wahida Clark




Wahida Clark was born and raised in Trenton, New Jersey. She is no stranger to the hard work and the sacrifices that breed success. This Trenton native owned and operated L.M. Clark Printers & Publishers Inc., a printing and publishing company in Trenton.   She is crowned the Queen of Thug Love Fiction by Nikki Turner, the Queen of Hip Hop Fiction. Wahida’s style of writing is the “TEMPLATE” for urban literature. When you read her novels, they are so real you are convinced of one of three things: you know the characters; you want to know the characters; or you are one of the characters.

Her Essence and Black Issues Book Reviews bestselling novels include Thugs and The Women Who Love Them, Payback Is A Mutha, Payback With Ya Life, and her latest anthology with Kiki Swinson titled “Sleeping With The Enemy.”
 
She has just completed her latest Novel ‘The Golden Hustla’ which will be released August, 2010. Coming in May is ‘What’s Really Hood?’ Part 1 an Anthology featuring, Wahida, Lashonda Teague, Victor Martin, Shawn ‘Jihad’ Trump and Bonta. She is vice president of the non-profit organization based out of East Orange, New Jersey, Prodigal Sons and Daughters Redirection Services, a re-entry program for convicts and ex-convicts. The organization also provides support groups and mentors for at-risk youth.

Today, Wahida operates her printing & publishing company out of East Orange, New Jersey, Wahida Clark Presents Publishing. Her first releases include: Trust No Man 1 & 2 by Cash, Thirsty by Mike Sanders, Cheetah by Missy Jackson, Karma With A Vengeance by Tash Hawthorne and The Ultimate Sacrifice by Anthony Fields.


 


Interview with Conversations Bookclub of Mississippi

Meet Wahida Clark, she is a remarkable woman, grounded by her knowledge of who she is and what she represents. Wahida is first wife and mother, but she excels as a businesswoman in all she does. The writing career that has taken the literary world by storm only began in 2002 or 2003, yet you would think by the accolades she has received that she has been in the game for over a decade.
 
What led her to writing while in prison? Her answer was simple: “My husband was locked up, I was locked up and we needed money. People don’t realize it, but it takes money to live even in prison, and I also needed money for my family on the outside.” While in prison she worked in the law library, normally by herself, and she would do a great deal of reading during that time. It was during one of these occasions that she was reading XXL Magazine and read about an author who also had their beginning while incarcerated. “I said to myself that if he could do it then I could as well.”
 
There was a literary agent who was also in prison that decided to teach a course on writing, and Wahida signed on. She wrote on legal pads and let others read it for input. They devoured the pages and were always asking for more. I asked her if she ever worried about not being able to make it in the business. “I knew I would get published,” she said confidently. “My work was going to see the light of day.”
 
At that point we had to reflect on the career that she has which is still foreign to her. “I have only been out a few days. I’ve never done a booksigning or met with fans. This (the interview with Conversations) is the first thing I have done. To me it is like I am just getting started.”
 


Who inspired her before she wrote what became THUGS AND THE WOMEN WHO LOVE THEM? “I read everything from Donald Goines, Iceberg Slim to James Patterson.” When asked who she was initially writing for, she answered that it was the hood market. “My husband told me that if I was going to do this that I had to do my research. He told me what was popular: thugs, drugs and pimping.”
 
Not long after writing her book, Wahida happened to read “Married Men” by Carl Weber. She noticed that he was getting praise from critics and writers alike so she decided to reach out to him. “I wrote him and told him that I had just finished writing a book and wanted to know what I should do next. He asked me to send him my manuscript. It was from there that he submitted the book to Black Print Publishing. They told me it was too big so I would have to cut it down. The publisher ended up splitting the book, and that manuscript became THUGS AND THE WOMEN WHO LOVE THEM and EVERY THUG NEEDS A LADY.”
 
Wahida told us that she can still remember the first time she saw her name on the cover of a book. “I was in Lexington, Kentucky and it was mail call. Some of the ladies on lock down with me had ordered some copies, and they had come in a big envelope with about seven or eight books in there. It was like ‘Wow, this is my book.'”
 
Little did she know that readers all over the world were wowed by her as well.
 
After her relationship ended with Black Print, Wahida—with the help of her literary agent—-was signed to a deal with Dafina, an imprint of Kensington. Ironically, becoming a label mate of Carl Weber, the author who helped her get started in the industry. Her other titles include PAYBACK IS A MUTHA and THUG MATRIMONY.
 


Today, Wahida’s focus is not only her own career as an author, but helping others as well. She has begun her own literary agency to groom new authors, and she is now signed with Warner Books. I mentioned to her that in one interview she said that her writing is meant to entertain. She stood behind that, but added that her agent likes the fact that there are consequences to the things that her characters do. “Once I start writing and get in their heads, they take on a life of their own sometimes. If you get a message from what I write,” she said, “then that’s wonderful.”
 
A workaholic in every sense of the word, Wahida is working on the 6th book in the THUGS series as well as what she calls her “crossover” book. “I want to get some of those James Patterson” dollars,” she told us with a laugh. Also in the works is an anthology with author Kiki Swanson and her novel PAYBACK WITH YOUR LIFE. Robin Garder, a member of the book club asked Wahida if she had thought about writing her autobiography. “People have asked me that,” she answered, “but I honestly hadn’t thought about it.”
 
With everything that she has been through in the last decade, Wahida related that she can’t even look at her jail time as a bad thing. “I can’t say it was a negative. Without it there is no way I would’ve written a book.”
 
When asked what authors have been on her reading list, she told the group that they are diverse as the rest of her life: James Patterson, Guy Johnson, Maya Angelou, Omar Tyree, Dean Koontz and Nikki Turner. Ironically, it was Turner who gave Clark the title of “Queen of Thug Love Fiction.” I asked her was there any pressure with titles such as that or “bestseller.” Wahida’s answer was short and to the point. “I really don’t think about that, not as long as I can back it up. It’s flattering, but it just means that I have to stay on top of my game everyday.”
 
As we wrapped up the discussion, Wahida was asked what advice would she give those who say they have a story in them. “I would tell them to write. I have had people tell me that they have five books in their head. What I tell them is they need to put them down on paper, because they aren’t doing you or anyone else any good while they are just in your head. Do your research and make sure it is the best it can be.”
 
And what did Wahida have to say to her growing legion of fans? The bestselling author actually became emotional before answering. “Thank you so much for your support. Thank you to everyone who wrote me, telling me how much they enjoyed the books. It meant so much for me to get that encouragement.”
 
The future is bright for the author who had no intention of being a writer, but whose literary star is one of the brightest on the market at this time. She has a fan base that at this point is hard to fathom, and has made an impact that will probably take some time to wrap herself around.
 
One thing that is clear at this point, however, is that Wahida Clark is a fighter in every sense of the world. She is not one to allow her circumstances to define her, but the lives she has introduced us to through her characters will remain with us for years to come.
 
You can also visit her at: http://www.wclarkpublishing.com   or  WCP community at:  http://wclarkpublishing.ning.com
 

 



 

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Intimate Conversations with Author Marc Lacy

 

Meet Huntsville’s own Marc Lacy, a graduate of Alabama A&M University.  He is a nationally renown, award winning poet/author and spoken word artist.  He has performed all of over the country at many national literary events and spoken word venues.  Marc is a contributing writer to RADAR
and The Grove Magazines.  He is also a writer for Blogginginblack.com.

In The Summer of 2009, Marc met up with the co-founder of HBO’s  Def Poetry Jam, Mr. Bruce George and Poet Rene Reyes in Los Angeles to serve on the panel at The Annual “So you Think you can  Spit?”poetic symposium for youth.  Lacy credits his faith in God and love of family for providing energy to succeed.
Ella:  Let the party begin!  Marc, what makes you powerful as a person and a writer?
Marc:  I would not necessarily deem myself as a powerful person; but I do think that there is power in the written word.  The more we learn about the craft and our abilities, the better off we will be in positioning ourselves to get the message out to the people. Thus creating a powerful force in the act alone.
Ella:  Who are your mentors? Where do you find your inspiration?
Marc:  I have several mentors (who actually do not know that they are my mentors)…too many to name.  But they are fiction, non-fiction writers as well as poets/spoken word artists. My hunger to become a better writer and a voice for the people, with faith in God, keeps my engine churning.
 

 

Ella:  Finish this sentence- My writing offers the following legacy to future readers…
Marc:  A creative instinct which is the by-product of a hunger to always be the best that I can be…no matter what. Write better…and write the best. 
 

 

Ella: Before we go too deep, Marc, I would like to take a minute to shine the light on your fabulous co-author.
Assuanta Howard was born and raised in New York City. Howard is known for her dynamic and innovative persona. She began her career in higher education, serving over 17 years in various leadership roles. She managed grant funded programs with budgets over 3 million dollars.

Howard is qualified to administer the Myers Briggs Type Indicator, a psychometric questionnaire designed to measure psychological preferences in how people perceive the world and make decisions. Howard took her extensive literacy and ESOL experience, leadership and program development expertise and established several business entities within the literary industry.

She is the proud founder of Asta Publications, LLC, a mainstream and self-publishing company and Asta Public Relations Services, a public relations firm that focuses on brand management and marketing campaigns for literary professionals.
 

 

Ella:  Introduce us to Wretched Saints and the main characters.
Marc:  My book is a fiction short story collection which touches upon very sensitive matters…mainly “so-called” good people who call themselves walking the righteous path; but living an unrighteous lifestyle.

Wretched Saints provides a literary window through which we may possibly see traits of ourselves within one or more of the characters as they learn the hard way to listen when God is talking. Thus His signal, when digested properly allows suppression of sinful urges opening up the door, for spiritual growth.

Are you a Wretched Saint? Open the covers…and see.

Of course our desire is to walk within The Kingdom’s Neighborhood, but it can be very difficult leaving the alluring amenities of home. We have the protocol down pat; especially when others can witness us witnessing.

However, when backs are turned and the sun has set, the righteous hotness of the self-proclaimed saint can suddenly turn lukewarm. Although the tongue can no longer house rationalizations, we still find a way to verbally cover spiritual deficits…thus casting us further into a pit of unrighteous debt surrounded by several unused shovels.
 

 

Ella:  What are some of their specific issues, needs or problems addressed in this book?
Marc:  Self-righteousness, reactionary, impulsive, arrogance, and hard-headedness just to name a few.
 

 

Ella: Who do you want to reach with your book and the message within?
Marc:  I honestly feel that saints, sinners, churched, un-churched, educated/uneducated, young/elderly professionals, and people of all races can identify with this book.  However, if I had to choose a specific demographic, it would be those who want to “do right,” but seriously struggle with it.

Ella: Ultimately, what do you want readers to gain from your book, Wretched Saints?
Marc:  God never stops working on us or others.

Ella: Share with us your latest news, awards or upcoming book releases.
Marc:  I (Marc Lacy) have been nominated as AAMBC Poet of the Year for 2010.  Also, there are several spoken word products coming out during the summer and fall of 2010.  

Ella: How can our readers reach you online?
http://www.marclacy.com
http://www.avopublishing.com
http://www.facebook.com

Awww, Baby, LuvMe Reader Reviews!

Great Book..Read it!!, March 12, 2010
By Shahara Roberts – See all my reviews

My boyfriend got this book for me from the author herself. I started reading the book in between classes and it was really hard to put it down. It leaves you salivating, fantasizing and experiencing the pain, love and confusion of the characters. I finished the book in less than two days and was ready to start on her first book titled “Waiting for Love’.
Furthermore, I have to say that this book was well put together and Wanda has all of my support.

Entertaining Read, January 27, 2010
By Tracey Mcfarlan “Diva Spice” (Hollis, NY) – See all my reviews

Luv Me is an entertaining collection of erotic short stories. It takes you to places you fantasize about going to and leaves you wanting more. It will fill you with sexual and sensual pleasure as well as comic relief. Each story gives a riveting encounter of love, lust and passion. It’s a good read whether you’re on the bus or train going to work or right before you go to bed. After reading Wanda’s first book, Wait For Love: A Black Girl’s Story, I was expecting something similar, but was pleasantly surprised when I realized how different the two books are. Well done, Wanda! You’ve done a marvelous job once again. Can’t wait for the next one.

Awww. baby, get your luv today! http://www.wandadhudson.com

LuvMe - Because Everybody Needs A Little Luv

Hostage of Lies by Dr. Maxine E. Thompson

 

Book Spotlight:  Hostage of Lies by Dr. Maxine E. Thompson

The story is a vivid portrait of Reverend Godbolt’s family and his forebears. The family’s secrets set the stage for a profound and provocative debate about black identity and destiny in America’s past and present. We see the saga of Reverend Godbolt, who has always ruled his family with a steel glove, and who is questioning his faith, near the end of his life. A secret has kept him from truly trusting his wife and even loving one of his children.

We see his spirited daughter, Nefertiti, who harbors a secret of her own, which keeps her from being able to actualize as a woman. We have the love triangle of the two men who loved Nefertiti, Pharaoh Curry, her first lover, and Isaac Thorne, her first husband, who both are trying to win her back.

This situation is compounded by Nefertiti’s current interracial marriage. It was this last act of insurrection against the family’s mores which has ex-communicated Nefertiti from her insular family for the seven years preceding her father’s seventy-fifth birthday celebration. At the opening of the novel, Nefertiti has returned from Santa Monica, California to Shallow’s Corner, Michigan. In her return as the prodigal minister’s daughter, the scene is set, as past and present ghosts of hidden sins come home to roost.

Although the kernel of the story takes place from a Wednesday through a Sunday, the story is told out of sequence, in order to reflect the way that the memories of past regrets haunt the characters.

As the formerly owned chattel of white America, there seems to be a propensity among the characters in the novel to own people, places, things, (lucre). In one instance, this is exemplified where the character goes so far as to steal heir property from his brother. Throughout the Godbolt family’s struggle for upward mobility, there co-exists the denial of their violent ancestral history, fraught with lynchings, murder and fratricide. The family’s violence can be seen as a microcosm of the larger society, yet at the same time there is a kind of self-hatred turned inward, a social implosion of sorts, going on with the Godbolt family. The denial of their ancestral past reflects the denial of an entire nature of its historical past. That is, this country’s refusal, one hundred years later, to deal with the lingering effects of the cancer of slavery.

The title and the theme are intertwined. The characters, in their search for wholeness, whether through materialism, classism or religion, lose sight of the main issue. Just as they will carry nothing out of the world with them when they die, they can not own one another’s soul. They can only love one another freely. It is the ability to connect, therefore redeem, one another, which determines the success, or lack thereof, of the characters in the book.

In addition, through out the novel, there is an adoption search which operates on two levels as an allegory. The search of the Diaspora of Blacks for wholeness in America (in that they were torn from Mother Africa) is mirrored by the search of one of the characters for her family tree. The novel deals with the issue of adoption which often runs counter to African American culture due to the history of children being sold away from their mothers. At the same time, the struggles a mother faces who has given a child up for adoption faces, is universal.

 

 
Excerpt from Hostage of Lies by Dr. Maxine E. Thompson

Nefertiti Searches for Her Adopted Child
Nefertiti turned to the back of the Bible and found the family tree.  From what she saw this was her father’s side of the family. Killsprettyenemy, the youngest son, had been Reverend’s father. Bryce had been Rev’s and Tiger’s paternal grandfather, and Theo was one of his older sons. She took her finger and traced the family tree. If Bryce was her father and Uncle Tiger’s grandfather, he would have been her great-grandfather.  Shilo would have been her great-great grandfather.  Samson would have been her great-great-great grandfather..

 Nefertiti’s hands trembled and an electrical current coursed through her blood. It was too mind boggling to absorb all at once! This was a page from a piece of her unknown history.  A piece of her ancestors.

Then Nefertiti began to dig some more. Underneath the bottom layer of the trunk was a quilt. Patterns of horses had been stitched on it. Nefertiti lifted the quilt in her hand, feeling herself tied to something valuable, something of the past. The material was so old some of the rotting threads began to fray in her hand. 

 She now knew the taste of victory the archaeologists from Ike’s Internet assignment must have felt when they discovered a fossil.  This was even better. This letter was a fossil from her bloodline. Nefertiti returned to digging through the trunk.  Finally, she found what she was looking for when a folded piece of paper fell out of the Bible.  Nefertiti unfolded it.      

She was thinking of  the “great secret,” which Isaac had alluded to, and now here it was.  It was just a piece of paper, but its power made her fall to her knees.

It was the original birth certificate for her little girl. The certificate did not name the father of the Negro baby girl. Because she was underage at the time, and the laws for statutory rape were more strictly enforced, Nefertiti remembered never naming the father. Yet Rev and them had known. During those days, the baby was called “illegitimate” and the father’s name was not put on the birth certificate if you were not married.  Other than the first name, Desiree, her daughter had no name. 

Nefertiti was surprised she did not cry anymore. She didn’t  know what she felt. Still, the years came rushing back to her with a  sharp jab. The “secret” she’d harbored all these years, until she sometimes didn’t even speak it in her most inward parts. And the horror of her choice began to sink in like an underground river.  

Besides being her baby, this wasn’t just any baby she’d given away. This was a  baby of African  descent. Born in  America. A baby with a legacy of children being sold away from their mothers.  A baby with a history of an ancestor being beaten to death while her infant was still in the thick harbor of her womb. A baby who had a deep connection to her ancestors. She had to find Desiree, no matter what happened.  Even if Desiree spit in her face.  Nefertiti knew she had to try.  She knew then that she was about to embark on the deepest journey of her life.

The words, “It’s like a curse on your family when you don’t know where your kinfolk is,” seared an indelible brand into her brain.

Meet the Author
Dr. Maxine E. Thompson is the owner of Black Butterfly Press, Maxine Thompson’s Literary Services and Thompson Literary Show, and Maxine Show. She hosts an Internet radio show on www.artisfirst.com. She is the author of novel, The Ebony Tree, Award-winning Hostage of Lies, A Place Called Home, The Hush Hush Secrets of Writing Fiction That Sells, How to Publish, Market and Promote your Book Via Ebook Publishing, The Hush Hush Secrets of Creating a Life You Love, Anthology, SECRET LOVERS, (with novella, Second Chances,) and Summer of Salvation.

SECRET LOVERS made the Black Expression’s Book Club Bestselling list on 7-8-06 (after a 6-6-06 release date.) A new anthology, All in the Family, (her novella, Summer of Salvation) came out in April 2007). Another new anthology, Never Knew Love Like This Before (her novella, Katrina Blues,) was published in June 2007. It was #13 on Amazon’s top 100. Is now a Kindle choice and on their bestsellers list and has been on there many times as a multicultural and romance anthology.

Novel, Hostage of Lies, came out in December 2009 and was voted a Best Book on EDC Creations/Black Pearl Magazine.

You can sign up for her free newsletter at http://www.maxinethompson.com

 

 

 

 

Self Published? Are You Really An Author?

 

Self Published? Are You Really An Author?
by Nanette Buchanan
Questions posed by Black Pearls Magazine:
As a self-published author, do you get the same respect as authors produced by traditional publishing houses? Are you really an author in the eyes of your peers?

I really found this conversation quite interesting. Being a self published author and consistently looking for opportunities which include, literary agents, publicist and other avenues, I’ve found that each path has it’s ups and downs. It depends on what you’re willing to pay for, have the patience for or have had an experience with. I decided to self publish, not to duck the traditional guidelines but after being scammed by a few of the “so-called” people of the industry, I decided if I should lose another dime it will be because I tossed it in the well not someone else.

As far as the editing, marketing, advertising and sales I agree we all need the win win path. Most of us will complain about what others have or have not done but there are only a few willing to share the concepts without a cost.

Again, the competitive edge…….so why complain if you have the perfect novel, the desired genre, the distribution and your sales? Why worry about the self published author that lacks the knowledge, courage or intelligence to know that with research they could have a best seller? If they are making phenomenal sales, it’s because they have captured what we often forget, an audience.

I don’t have time to worry about your method as a writer…..I wish you success. I wish you the best in what you do. I wish you all the blessings and hope to read your methods, your path and learn from your experience as I grow as a self published author. Some traditional authors use this term “self published author” as though it was a virus that was rapidly spreading. A disease that should have been quarantined and forbidden to resurface. There are so many readers, so many genre’s, so many paths to promote and sale that we should be encouraging each other.

We all agree that this is not a get rich venture, only those who take it serious (proper editing, promotions, marketing) will succeed. The readers may read the “new” novel but will they follow that lazy author. I seriously doubt it. There are many best selling authors that started as “self published” authors. There are many markets that have those who create their own method and audience and still do well. So does the “self published” author. Those in the industry who have those query letters that have not been answered, the dreaded pain of trying to meet the deadlines, the arguments to save their creativity while working with the editor, and yes finally being signed, do deserve kudos.

But, honestly, just because they do doesn’t mean that the “self published” author doesn’t deserve to share the world of readers who really don’t care…….as long as the story is well written and holds them captive.


Self Published? Are You Really an Author? Yes, I am definitely a successfully, published Author!

Thank God the decision to publish is not left to those who decided they would NEVER self-publish……..the success is not how it’s published but rather or not it’s purchased. Self published books do sell…..ask Stephen King or Tyler Perry.

 

About the Author
Nanette M. Buchanan was born, raised and educated in Newark, New Jersey. After graduating from Arts High School in Newark she attended Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. It was then that she first set her pen to pad, written expressions of her love for poetry. She is a proud mother, wife and grandmother, now residing in Somerset, New Jersey.

Her pad to pen accomplishments include three volumes of poetry; Thoughts, Thoughts & Reflections, and Quiet Times; five children stories and seven novels. Nanette’s first published work and debut novel was “Family Secrets….Lies & Alibis”.

Since then the publication of the sequel, “A Different Kind of Love” and the release of her first volume of poetry, “Thoughts” an e-book hit the market. In October of 2009, Nanette’s murder mystery, “Bruised Love” was released. It is her goal to become a successful author without limits. The author is available for personal appearances, chats and signings.
• Bruised Love
• Family Secrets, Lies & Alibis
• A Different Kind of Love
www.ipendesigns.net
www.Amazon.com
www.bordersbooks.com
• Website: http://www.ipendesigns.net
• View the Video Postcard: http://www.audioacrobat.com/note/CR5Q90VQ

Books by Author Nanette M. Buchanan

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