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Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Again?

This year has been one of surprises. Bad and good.  Plus, no let up. Two more entertainers and a politician have passed over. One from a former top T. V. show; one from the music world and one from Cuba.

Ron Glass, of the 70s T. V.’s show, Barney Miller fame died last week. He played the stylish, “playa” detective who always had a side hustle going on outside his main squad room gig. His character, Det. Ron Harris, was funny and progressive for the time. For you young’uns, you might remember him on the T. V. show Firefly in his later years. He was 71.

Soul singer Colonel Abrams died last week. He was big during the disco era but for his dance/funk music. Not a huge star but he did leave his mark. His Trapped was one of the most requested songs that DJs had to spin to kick off lots of after work “Happy Hours” to get the party started after a crappy day. Sadly, he was ill (diabetic) and living on the streets. He was 67.

Last but surely not least, Fidel Alejando Castro Ruiz died at the age of 90. The former strongman of Cuba elicits a plethora of emotions; all good, bad but never indifferent. Whatever you thought of him, if you thought of him at all, the man could not be ignored.  I could say lots about this man but I’ll tick a lock. Let’s just say I never understood while growing up, why I was supposed to hate this man and fear the tiny island of Cuba. That spot of land just was not on my radar as one to tremble about. Plus, I knew lots of people who “hated” the island and wanted it to sink into the ocean BUT could not wait to replenish their forbidden stashes of Cojibas by way of some convoluted subterfuge. 

I’ll leave that right there.


And now, some pictures. Yes. I'm partial to the ones from their days of reknown.







Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thanksgiving


Okay. Happy Gobble Gobble to all my US fiends. And to all my ex-pat ones too! Watch out for the the tryptophan coma.

And to my non-USA friends...Try a pumpkin pie somewhere, sometime. It's delicious.

And for an understanding as to why Thanksgiving Day is kinda not a day for Native Americans to get all verklempt about (I'm sure they reflect in another way on this day), read this link:

http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2012/11/23/what-really-happened-first-thanksgiving-wampanoag-side-tale-and-whats-done-today-145807

I just wish everyone. PEACE and JUSTICE. And always, always be thankful for what you do have.


Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Twenty Year Anniversary of "Set It Off" - All female, Black quartet of talented actresses made box office bank and broke the Hollywood stereotype that films with "those" kinds of leads don't sell

http://blackamericaweb.com/2016/11/07/little-known-black-history-fact-set-it-off/?iframe=true&theme_preview=true

This movie is soooooo good as a thriller, a heist film and as social commentary. Meaty roles that make you think. And Blair Underwood to stare at. Le sigh. Hollywood had no hopes for it as it had female leads. 4 Black female leads. Ha! Made for 9 million; it grossed 41 million! The F. Gary Gray directed film opened on Nov. 6, 1996. When it comes on T. V., even now, I still cry when Queen Latifah gets her chance to shine like James Cagney at the end. The soundtrack is unreal. Such a load of talent. Only other soundtrack with the same edge is the one for New Jack City. Twenty years gone already? Wow.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Zena Stephens - Was elected sheriff in Jefferson County TEXAS. Great day in the mornin'



I'm very proud of you, Mrs. Stephens. Must have taken A LOT of gumption to run for this office.  In addition to being QUALIFIED. Congratulations! I read it was a close, tough race. But you came through. Again, do celebrate and be CAREFUL. A LOT of unhinged folk out there and honey, you in Texas.


http://www.beaumontenterprise.com/news/article/Jefferson-Co-elects-state-s-first-black-female-10603266.php

Friday, November 11, 2016

Update: DISSENT: New release date is Nov. 15th!

So much drama over book! Well, my dream was crushed. Amazon and Apple would NOT load it without text on the cover. So, I had to cave. The book will be at select e-retailers in ebook form; Amazon will carry the print version come December. So, you'll have your choice.

So far here is the link to the e-retailers:

https://www.draft2digital.com/book/136531

And here is the new cover with the requirements. I miss Awa's cuff bracelet showing. Darn!



Thursday, November 10, 2016

The election or Weimar 2.0

What can I say? It took me a bit to gather this. And not because I was shocked or surprised. I felt strangely calm as the whole thing unfolded.

Hillary was sooooooooo close and it slipped through her fingers. The Gore Effect again.. A woman who was the only totally qualified ADULT, ready to run the nation without needing a remedial course on how the gov't works (when one is not being OBSTRUCTED at every effin turn) A WOMAN. Mrs. Clinton is my president.

Lots of self-hating white women voted for her opponent. And do not call out rural women, lower-class women or blue-collar women on that move. Tons of middle to upper class women voted AGAINST her. That put that man over the top. Phew! Patriarchy is like a vampire. It can only die if people are willing to kill it.

Factor in third party folk, non-voters and the plain angry racist move of "vote for the guy who will put those other people back in their place. Even if it's at my expense." Yep. Donald J. Trump is president-elect but fear and hate won the election.

Donald J. Trump. The Prez-Elect. The aged playboy. The hyped tycoon (Believe me. He ain't as rich as he says. Believe me). And the money he does have, well...He made it off the backs of the sort who voted for him. The voter who loves Fox News sound bites as much as they love cheese bites. The voter who somehow felt "their Amerikka" was slipping away. Yo, it was, is, because YOUR ATTENTION SPAN IS SHORTER THAN THE LIFE SPAN OF A FRUIT FLY.  You were weaned on reality tv. No wonder this election cycle was so much "fun." You were waiting for someone to throw a drink or pull a wig off. And it only could have gotten better if the debates had been held as cage matches.

Look, the orange one has been chosen. America, you got the person you deserved not the person you needed. Your tainted angry energy drew this cretin to you. It reflected his.

After Barack and Michelle leave the White House, class will have left the building. I see a return to the gaudy Reagan excess of the 80s once Mr. and Mrs. T move in.

Assaults on minorities on race and religion, have started already.

Now my impersonation of President Obama. Imagine his voice, but my words:

"Let me me be clear. I have weathered Neanderthals before. Just never believed one would be the U. S. prez elect. God. Bush-43 doesn't look as vile now. I've been reading accounts of fallout of the Trump Effect. Shootings, an attack on a Muslim woman in a Walmart because she was wearing a hijab. Right here in good, old S. Philly, my actual home turf, there was vandalism and "Sieg Heil 2016" and swastikas scrawled on buildings. And on and on. WTF? Is this the the kind of behavior that the Prez-Elect condones? Sadly, he does. He ran on that platform with every wink and nod he gave his rabid, misguided base. Angry, white folk and foolish, pouting minorities co-signed it when they voted for him. My grandmother always said that fragile egos are the most dangerous of any kind. I can see why now. Trump is responsible for building up his supporters' fragile egos so they feel quite free to act this ugly. 

But, hey, I intend to live my life, to go about my business. But I give all nut jobs fair warning, I will not allow ANYONE to step into me. This is my America too."



Sunday, November 6, 2016

"DISSENT," my latest historical romance drops NOVEMBER 9th!

Well, while I think on the plot of my next installment in my Scifi series, I thought I'd drop this baby on y'all. It's my labor of love and a tribute to all the French Civilization and African Studies classes I had in high school and college. Especially college. I thank my tremendous professors. Men and women of some mad knowledge who could walk into a classsroom and just start giving the lesson WITHOUT benefit of textbook, notes or devices. They were the personification of their subject matter. They ate, slept and breathed their metier.

This present historical romance I wrote is the blending of all I soaked up from them. It's called DISSENT and is book 2 in my standalone historical series, LOVE VANQUISHES ALL.

THE PREMISE:
1571. France is in stasis. The peace struck after the latest War of Religion between Catholics and Protestants (Huguenots) is fragile and desperately needs more support to sustain it. The monarchy proposes a royal wedding joining a Catholic princess to a Huguenot prince as it is seen as the needed bulwark. Negotiations are in the works. All is good. Or so it appears.

On another front, France has fallen far behind other European nations in its quest to expand its empire overseas. Expenditures from civil wars have sapped her coffers, her energy and have stunted her economic dreams.

Could another marriage remedy the problem by mixing religious unity with the possibility of increased commerce?

Enter Awa, the daughter of a visiting, Roman Catholic, Wolof diplomat from the elite ranks of the Jolof Kingdom in West Africa. She embodies the best of her land in her manner and in her education. She is dutiful, proud, and respectful of her family, but after living a portion of her formative years at the French court, she has become outspoken and a tad willful.

Enter Blaise, the nephew of the most powerful leader of the Huguenot faction in the country. An aristocrat. Learned. Traveled. Haunted. Ladies’ man. Rarely sees a sunrise, unless he is going to bed at that hour. He abhors responsibility of any kind. And Roman Catholics.

Two persons of noble lineage. Strangers. Foes. Pawns. Allies? Lovers?

If Awa and Blaise can cease fighting long enough, could their marriage quell domestic unrest, bring riches and stability to France, but most importantly deliver true love to them before the realm implodes over religious matters again?  



DISSENT is also an homage to those sweeping historical romances of the 70s and 80s I read. Just without the silliness, rape and alpha-hole hero. Oh, and the heroine is AFRICAN. Truly AFRICAN. Not a weave, not a mulatto in sight nor SLAVE background in her lineage. She is an ARISTOCRAT. I needed to see another Black woman in another dignified role in a historical romance. So, I wrote the sucker myself! Wanna know more? BUY the book. Please no piracy. Read it and let me know what you think.

The cover is so gorgeous I requested it be released WITHOUT any lettering on the front cover. No need to muck up that view with words. The e-retailers were none too happy. APPLE has refused to carry it. Ho Hum. Their loss.. Anyway any info like author name, blurb, etc. are all on the inside page and when released in print in a few months, all that will be on the back cover. For now here is the info and some links who will carry it

https://www.draft2digital.com/book/136531

DISSENT drops NOVEMBER 9th! And now that incredible cover by the fantastic Kirsten McKenzie:
(her website by the way is https://kekreationsart.wordpress.com/)

P.s. Humans are so funny. This book is on NetGalley too for industry professionals to review. NetGalley also has a poll on each book to rate a book's cover. This book in the course of a DAY has earned 8 thumbs DOWN for the cover. Not one thumbs up. Really, trolls? Gut reactions are soooo telling. I mean there was no way people could have downloaded and read the book that fast to dislike it. So those votes had to be visceral reactions. I have a life and totally forgot that bigots read romance books too. So, they saw the cover got all insecure and thumbs-downed it. Let me guess. So if the hero were gazing at a chick who was anything but BLACK, would they have given the cover thumbs up? Just wondering. But I know the answer. Haters gonna hate and I'm gonna work on gettin' more by week's end (just like Katt Williams says).

So scoot on over there and see ugly in action. Vote if you want to too.

https://s2.netgalley.com/catalog/book/101344

Mic drop.