Today I would like to send a special birthday greeting all the way up to heaven to one of my heroes, Dr. Maya Angelou. Her words and wisdom have helped me live my best life. I am still a work in progress, but at least I know some things about life. I will continue to strive to be the best person I can be because I know better than my past and I have resolved to do better.
How ironic is it that National Poetry Month houses Dr. Angelou’s birthday? It was cosmic alignment. I would like to share one of my favorite poems by her with you today. It is called The Mask and she used it in conjunction with Paul Laurence Dunbar’s poem We Wear the Mask. This poem has inspired a story from me as well. It is at the beginning stages of outline and character analysis, but I plan to push forward with it very soon.
It is with a heavy heart that I write this post. I was on Goodreads this morning and was informed that one of the ladies I have bonded with over books and writing has passed away. Gisele Walko was a fellow writer of Paranormal Romance novels. I interviewed her for my Couch Convos Feature a while back. Read it here.
Though we never met in person, Gisele was very dear to me. She read my books as a part of my beta reader group and provided wonderful feedback. She was an assistant librarian for an elementary school and was very passionate about books. I pray her husband and children find comfort that she was well loved in the indie writing community.
Though I am sad to see her life come to an end here on earth, I know her legacy will live on in the books she shared with us. If you haven’t read her work, please do so. Even if you are not a fan of Paranormal Romance, like me, you will still find the beauty in her writing.
As you may know, I curated my first anthology, Love is Color, recently and I am so giddy over the outcome. When I started this project it was just a dream. Now 15 other authors and poets have lent their gifts to bring my dream to fruition. Each one of these gifted writers is special in her own way and confirmed for me that sisterhood is to be celebrated! Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
I decided to review the book for Goodreads and thought it would be sweet to post it here as well. When I started organizing the book I didn’t know if I should put all of the short stories together and then all of the poems, but I decided against that. Instead, I intermingled the poems and shorts and I think it made for a better reading experience.
It is hard to believe that 3 years ago today I released my first novel, The Mistreatment of Zora Langston. It was the first step towards living my dream of becoming a published author. I would like to thank all of those who have supports me in my endeavor and welcome future readers. If you haven’t had a chance to read my debut novel, you can download your e-book copy today for only 99 cents! Click Here!
A lot of people mistake this book as a children’s book, but please don’t be fooled by the cover. It is NOT for children. I have marketed it as a young adult novel and I would not advise anyone under the age of 13 reading it. It is told from the perspective of a nine year old girl who has suffered sexual assault and physical abuse. Here’s more about the story:
Zora Langston is nine years old when her father dies, leaving her in the hands of a mother who is anything but loving and siblings who never considered her family. Without her father, she is truly alone. Before the dirt has even settled on his grave, there’s a new man of the house, and he has no interest in being Zora’s father. Despite her hardships, Zora remains true and allows faith to help free her from this new, horrible life she’s found herself in. She finds solace in her aunt and uncle and, for the first time, starts to discover what it’s like to have a real family. However, just when she thinks she has escaped her tormentors, new abusers emerge, old ones return from hiding and she must find the strength to survive.
I loved this character so much and she still lives in my heart. So much so that I am happy to announce that I have started developing the sequel to this book. The book is tentatively titled Cupcakes, Champagne and Butterflies and should be available this summer!
In the meantime, get to know Zora again by re-reading her story or discover her by reading her for the first time. If you would like to purchase an autographed copy, I have a limited number available. I will be selling them as an anniversary special of $7(Included s&h) until the release of the sequel or they run out, which ever happens first. Contact me using the form below for details on how to purchase your autographed paperback:
For today’s happy dance I’m taking you back… Way back. I love Genius of Love by the Tom Tom Club, but I must admit, I never knew most of what they were saying.I can’t be the only one making up lyrics here. 😝 I found the video with the lyrics for your Friday merriment! Enjoy!