Sable Lit Lounge

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Sable Lit Lounge


Sable Lit Lounge aims to create a place where African American and Multicultural lit and mainstream fiction can be showcased and explored.

The show will consist of at least 4 postings a month  covering book reviews,  author/agent/editor interviews, literary event info, commentary on current events affecting the multicultural community,  African American Contributions in literature and history plus original  short stories, poems and author features.

Sable Lit Lounge is designed to create an atmosphere of peace and awareness for professional African American and  multicultural Men and Women in their early to mid 30’s.
Laura Major’s contact information:


Laura Major Email
laura@lauramajor.com


Writers/Author Bio:

From the start, Laura Major managed her creative impulses by drawing,  writing songs, poems and short stories. While her interests in drawing  and writing songs have waned, her love affair with the written word only  grew stronger.

It was the recurring memories of encouragement from an eighth grade  English teacher, a fellow classmate who said during a critical writing  class, “I’m going to see your name on bookshelves,” and a destined  encounter with Romance Writers of America at a chocolate fair that put her on  track to fulfill her purpose.

Multicultural fiction is close to Laura’s heart, so the opportunity to  share these stories are not taken lightly. Laura is currently looking  forward to her first release with Amira Press.

8 comments on “Sable Lit Lounge

  1. It was 9th grade AP English and when the teacher was critiquing my poem, which he didn’t relate to, he said the following:

    ”You will always struggle against 3 obstacles. You are black, you are intelligent, and you are female.”

    He didn’t intend it to stop me, he meant it to empower me. You must first acknowledge the hurdles before you can clear them.

  2. Political Lit

    I recently received my early ballot for the democratic presidential nomination and I’ve been listening to the battle ramp up between the two lead contenders. Truth be told, Barack Obama has an eloquence we’ve missed for the last two terms, while Hilary Clinton relies on her track record as First Lady and as a New York Senator.

    Besides his lack of experience, Hilary Clinton writes off Barack as a lot of fluff with no substance due to the way he communicates. It’s interesting how President Bush has been ridiculed during the last two terms for the way he speaks. Yet, even the ability to communicate can be viewed as a liability as well as an asset. It’s easy to trivialize the power of communication when what’s being communicated doesn’t serve you.

    How we value words is ironic. Some value kind words and disregard negative ones, while others discount compliments and wilt under criticism assuming what’s said is true. We tell our children that only sticks and stones cause harm but words can’t hurt us. However, physical confrontation usually starts with some kind of verbal or written provocation.

    I value someone who can speak clearly, concisely, and with eloquence. However, I also understand the benefit of experience. Being a writer I know the frustration of being told that experience is important but not being given the chance to gain that experience.

    This nomination creates some interesting quandaries. Being an African American female, this decision reminds me of that Will & Grace episode where the question was whether they should endorse the candidate who represented their lifestyle, religion, and ethnic struggle or if they should support the candidate whose values best represent their own .

    A vote for either contender is a vote that could change history; a vote that could lead to a black president or a female one. While the idea of a female president is exciting, the idea of a black one is also empowering. Each one comes with a different set of fears. Is America ready for a black president? How about a female one? Barack has been compared to the Kennedy’s John Fitzgerald and Robert Francis, does that mean he will meet their same demise?

    In the early ’90’s Senator Clinton, as First Lady, was put in charge of President Clinton’s national healthcare reform. Will her presidency have the same legacy, fraught with opposition and overshadowed by scandal?

    Since action is often preceded by words, make mistake, the next preisent as with those that came before will first be judged by the words he or she speaks and then by the words he or she keeps.

  3. BROTHER 2 BROTHER LITERARY SYMPOSIUM
    February 1-2, 2008 ~ Houston, Texas

    On Friday, February 1st, (8:30-2:30 pm) & Saturday, February 2nd, (10-3:00
    pm) 2008, African-American fiction writers from across the nation will meet
    in Houston, Texas for the country’s fifth Annual Brother 2 Brother Literary
    Symposium at The Power Center, 12401 S. Post Oak Rd. in Houston, Texas. For
    more information, visit .

  4. Joinn me at the Romance Slam Jam 2008

    The Event for Readers and Authors of Black Romance

    12th Annual National Conference

    April 30, 2008 – May 4, 2008

    Chicago, IL

    http://www.romanceslamjam.org/

    2008 RSJ Aspiring Author Contest

    This contest is open to all aspiring authors of Black romance/women’s fiction.

    http://www.romanceslamjam.org/conference/AAContest.htm

  5. ——————————————————————————–

    02
    Feb
    08

    Power in the Stance

    By sablelitlounge

    Categories: Becoming an Author, Community, Literary Divas and Publishing
    Tags: interracial, intolerance, multicultural, prejudice, racism, romance

    I’ve been in my own world for the past few weeks while I edit my contracted novel and lay the foundation for my next work. In my short 33 years, I have never been known to take the easy road and the focus on igniting my literary career is no exception.

    I write Multicultural Interracial Romance.

    I’ll say it again….

    I write Multicultural Interracial Romance.

    I write about a society where people of differing cultures, races, religions and orientations positively interact with one another and in many cases fall in love.

    I knew when I joined a couple of mainstream national writers’ groups and their local chapters that while I would be embraced for my passion of writing itself, they may not understand my chosen topic. So for a while I wrote in a vacuum, not sharing my work just calling it chicklit because of my knack for sarcasm and humor. But my work is much broader than a female coming of age story. My work is about families, friends, lovers, and society coming of age.

    I emerged from my self-imposed coccoon to discover, on the first day of Black History month (gotta love the irony), that the possibility that we are evolving to a true melting pot of cultures in the publishing industry is not nearly as evident as first perceived. Yes, we are in the bookstores, but we still fight for shelf space and appropriate categorization.

    While the list of African American, Gay/Lesbian, and Multicultural/Interracial romance titles are growing, there are still many agents, publishers and the like, who refuse to acknowledge the growing demand for this literature. Middle class Caucasians are not the only market for literature, and literature based on the white middle class does not speak to everyone. Why is it that we as people of color are expected to read and enjoy literature based on the white experience, while accepting the lie that our experience holds no interest for anyone? The answer isn’t to be prejudice against the white experience, but for everyone to equally value all cultural experiences.

    Well, this post is the result of an uproar regarding the 2007 Best Book of the Year contest posted by Ecataromance. A very active multicultural/interracial group of writers and readers discovered that two of their own published members were among the nominees. They were both writers of interracial romance. Not only were they nominated, but they were in the number one and number two spots for their categories. The group urged it’s members to visit the ecataromance site and place their votes for Aliyah Burke & Shara Azod.

    Then suddenly the voting was halted and the poll was replaced with a new poll minus these author’s books.

    http://readerslounge.catanetwork.com/?page_id=305

    The only explanation was that some books were miscategorized and the organizer wanted to ensure that all books nominated were correctly categorized. As a result, the new poll was re-posted and the voting deadline was extended. Why hadn’t this due dilligence been exhausted prior to the initial release of the poll? And why did recategorization constitute removing the works of the interracial authors?

    After the ever- growing multicultural audience expressed their disgust via blogs and chatrooms and a barrage of questions from publishers of multicultural and interracial romance flooded the ecataromance webmistress’ in-box, the poll was restored and the original deadline upheld.

    http://www.ecataromance.com/index.php?page_id=323

    In the end, Azod came in first place in all three of her categories and Burke took second place in hers. Now we are left to wonder what the end result would have been had this poll genuinely ended on it’s own natural volition.

    Nevertheless, this is a prime lesson for the power of standing firm in what you believe. We may not be fighting lynchings, church burnings, fire hose assaults, and police baton beatings, but we are still striving to maintain every inch of progress those we honor this month have acquired for us.

  6. The Official Release of Mismatched

    Can the traditional development of love survive cyber dating and the complications of ethnic variation?

    Laura Major’s debut release of the multicultural contemporary romance, Mismatched takes a lighthearted yet sensual look at what happens when love is presented in a form that is unexpected and a manner that is unconventional.
    Mismatched, which is set in the center of New York’s financial district and the New Jersey Suburbs, tells the story of Tessa Dennison, an African American finance professional who decides to option love on the Internet after a series of busted blind dates. To improve her odds, Tessa incorporates the gender expertise of Justin Martin her childhood friend and secret admirer.

    Join Tessa and Justin for a matchmaking game like no other.

    Laura Major has an English degree from Arizona State University and is an active member of the national organization Romance Writer’s of America and Interracial Multicultural Romance Readers online group as well as several other readers and writers groups.

    ISBN: 978-1-934475-40-9

    Amira Press, LLC
    Baltimore, MD 21216
    http://www.amirapress.com
    http://lauramajor.com

  7. T.K. bishop says:

    Laura:
    Don’t be discouraged about writing multicultural romances. I just finished my first interracial romance novel, Picking Cotton. (Wish me Luck ongetting it published). From talking to Tressie Lockwood last summer, she said interracial romance is where it’s at. People just have to get over that.

  8. Perception of Image

    The interpretation of images is as varied as the people exposed to them. Perception of an image’s intent is often based on the individual’s experience and the analysis of that experience. I came face to face with this notion this week while watching the morning news. The newscaster’s teaser implored me to “stay tuned” to find out why many in the media and African American society were upset with the basketball star, LeBron James.

    Certainly I was intrigued as I could not imagine where this scenario was headed. After the newsbreak, the April 2008 cover of Vogue magazine was splashed on the screen. LeBron James and supermodel Gisele Bundchen were front and center. Gisele was long and shapely in a green evening gown, while LeBron was wearing a blue sleeve-less athletic shirt and matching warm-up shorts. The supermodel had a look of sheer glee while LeBron, who was dribbling a basketball and palming Gisele’s waist, displayed a powerful snarl. Opponents of the cover argued that the image perpetuated the stereotype of aggressive and dangerous black manhood. Many likened it’s symbolism to the 1930’s King Kong, where a huge black ape grips a fair maiden in one hand while growling and swatting at her would-be rescuers.

    Admittedly an ape, or more specifically King Kong, was one of the first thoughts that crossed my mind when I saw this cover. However, I was not offended. I marveled at how striking LeBron looked. In addition, there was something sexy about that image. After years of all the oppressive images of black people in general, I never want to see a black man in a position of subordination. Being a long-time spectator of basketball, I am well aware of the raw facial expressions these athletes make while driving to the hoop. To me, LeBron’s expression was nothing more than that. I was far more impressed by the image of power and aggression he displayed. When looking at this cover, it is LeBron who grabs your attention. Gisele is a mere after thought; a beautiful after thought, but an after thought nonetheless.

    Opponents argue that there were many other shots Vogue could have used for its cover, many fine shots which are displayed inside the magazine. However, if one of those shots would have been used, would we all be discussing this issue? The cover’s image also took away from another surprising fact. LeBron James is the first African American man to grace Vogue’s cover after over 90 years in circulation. While Sean “Puffy” Combs and Naomi Campbell appeared on UK’s Vogue in October of 2001, I could not find an instance of an African American man appearing on the cover of the U.S. version. Over the decades the covers ranged from abstract art often with only objects depicted to tarot card-like images to silly carefree snapshots and finally to glam-goddesses in every branch of the media/entertainment arena.

    There is an underlying objection to April’s cover that has less to do with the pose LeBron chose and more to do with what Gisele and LeBron represent together. Many on both sides of the racial coin are still uncomfortable with seeing a white woman and a black man together. Unlike the damsel in King Kong, Gisele looks elated with her partner, not terrified despite LeBron’s exaggerated snarl. Some feel it plays to the myths about the dangerous criminal minded black man and his desire to possess the white man’s woman. Interestingly enough the contrast between Gisele’s fair skin and LeBron’s ebony beauty was evident throughout many of the other pictures as well. Pictures of Gisele’s curvy five foot eleven frame dressed in white and LeBron’s towering six foot nine inch body dressed in black on the inside pages of the magazine played up their biggest differences. The contrast would have been more interesting if LeBron had been wearing white and Gisele the dark garb. Maybe the images would have then played upon the integration and perceived intimacy instead of drawing stark differences.

    Once I was able to look past the controversy of the ape stance and the interracial coupling, I became more intrigued as to why LeBron was the first African American male to be immortalized on Vogue’s cover in the first place. Nothing against LeBron, but certainly there were more debonair African American men that would have kept with Vogue’s fabulous fashion image. Names like Denzel Washington, Muhammad Ali, and Michael Jordan come to mind.

    This issue not only demonstrated our continuing struggle with cultural image and interracial intimacy, it also speaks to the conflict of gender identity. Gisele and LeBron are no doubt excellent representatives of their gender but does a woman always want to be depicted as a possession and the man as predator?

    Vogue has brought to light many conflicting ideals with a simple picture. Isn’t that what we expect from art?

    References:

    http://www.usatoday.com/life/people/2008-03-24-vogue-controversy_N.htm
    http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/678805/vogues_lebron_james_cover_evokes_negative.html
    http://www.nationalcenter.org/P21PR-LeBron_James_Gisele_Bundchen032808.html
    http://canadianpress.google.com/article/ALeqM5gWaMDbRUCgZF2-v1DAiHnJ-lrdig

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