Tuesday, November 28, 2006

What Do You Want Your Words To Mean?

Thinking of Bebe Moore Campbell and other Black women writers gone too soon...


The beauty of writing and leaving a published body of work is that your words will never truly be gone, even long after you depart this earth. But what do you want your words to say? What do you want them to mean? Some writers say only the art, only the craft, only the beauty of language and the turn and twirl of phrases. And that's good. That's fine. We need more beauty in the world. But some writers, like BeBe Moore Campbell, gave craft an agenda. Made beauty meet truth. Took issues to the art. And made us think about things like race relations in a post-riot LA. Some writers, like Octavia Butler got prophetic with the muse and laced language with the subtle nuances of a stance. You can't read her parables and not be eerily concerned about what path this country might be on. You can't read the fiction of these writers without having some small part of your conscious tapped. Thinking of these writers and others like them makes me seriously consider what I want my words to mean. I'm standing on the shoulders of giants. What legacy do I want to leave?

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Puffy and Kim

First, I know he's going by Diddy now. But he will always be Puffy to me. Puffy just fits him better. His entire presence is kind of Puffy, if you think about it. All fluffed up and nowhere to go… But that's another post… Second, I do realize that in the grand scheme of things, it doesn't really matter if Puffy feels that he's ready to marry Kim or that she's pregnant with twins and about to give birth to his children yet again without the ring. I know that marriage isn't for everybody. And if Puffy is grown-up enough to realize that he isn't grown-up enough to be a faithful husband, but sort of grown-up enough to be a halfway faithful boyfriend, then that's a good thing, well… sort of. And at the end of the day, who really cares? There are wars going on, children starving, and much more interesting celebrities with much more interesting crap going on in their lives (if that’s your thing.) But, Essence Magazine has deemed Puffy and Kim's story newsworthy by placing the giddy, happy-go-lucky couple on the cover. And far be it from me to argue with the magazine that used to be the bible of professional black womanhood (Looking for a new bible of professional black womanhood, by the way. See recent issue with Puffy and Kim on the cover. Essence's continual downward slip has fallen too low to salvage. But that's another post…) Anyway, I don't really care if Puffy marries Kim or not. And, I don't care that she's having twins. It kind of irritates me that Puffy is pimping his girlfriend's pregnancy to help out with the "Press Play" record sales. But not in a real, 'I'm so-oo angry' sort of way. More like a 'look at what this fool has to stoop to now to get sales' kind of way, or in a 'first, Biggie's death and now this' sort of way. But the actual fact that Kim sat there and told Essence magazine that she didn't care about the whole Puffy and J-Lo thing (even though reading between the lines, it was clear as heck to me that the chick was and still is heartbroken), didn't really bother me enough to blog about it. Kim isn't the first silly girl to take a lying, cheating SOB back. She won't be the last. And truth be told, maybe Puffy is really doing her a favor by not walking down the aisle. I'm not even going to enter the discussion about whether or not Kim is just a cold, gold-digger who's having babies for the loot. So what if she is? Can you think of a more fitting guy to get taken for the loot than our commitment phobic 'thought-I-told-you-that-we-won't-stop' friend, Puffy? In my humble opinion, if he persists in knocking sisters up without the ring then let the gold-diggers have at him. He has the money to keep making glossy, glittery, the-death-of-hip-hop videos, so he has the money to pay child support. And maybe if he knocks enough women up he won't have any more money to make his glossy, glittery, the-death-of-hip-hop videos anymore. Hey, a girl can dream can’t she? So, I guess I really don't care enough about Puffy and Kim tying the knot to make a great observational blog post about it. I care more about Puffy staying the heck away from the studio, unless he’s going in as a "producer" and never-ever-again as an "artist." I think he's a talented producer. But that would be another post, and probably one my alter ego should tackle… oops… she doesn't care that much about Puffy as a producer or artist to write about it either… Oh well, maybe I'm way off and have missed the boat entirely. Maybe, there are valid reasons why I should care. What are your thoughts on the matter?

much love and peace,


Friday, November 24, 2006

It's Here!

I held Divine Destiny in my hands on Wednesday! I got my author copies and already read through it once. It's pretty dang good if I might say so myself. I kinda like it. :-) Honestly, I can't believe that I've had three novels published this year. I feel so blessed and I also feel like this is almost unreal. When I wrote my nonfiction book and got it published, I thought "well, heck, I can finally write my novel since I wrote a book." And now I'm holding my third novel in my hands! It's my first paranormal romance and my first erotic romance. I love to read paranormals and I love to read erotic romances. But you could have never told me three or four years ago that I would be publishing in these areas... I'm so thankful and I just wanted to go on record saying how thankful I am! I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday weekend.

much love and peace,


Monday, November 20, 2006

Black on Black Crime (On Blogging in Black)

"You're headed for self destruction. You're headed for self destruction…"
"Stop the Violence," Human Edutainment Against Lies (HEAL)

"Don't you know we have to put our heads together... make the change, 'cause we're all in the same gang."
"We're All in the Same Gang," The West Coast Rap All Stars

In the eighties at the height of drive-by shootings, gang violence, and deadly fights at rap concerts, emcees came together on wax to create the anti-violence songs, "Stop the Violence" and "We're all in the Same Gang." There was a problem in our communities and artists came together using music to combat the problem. Now, I'm not saying that the rip-off of black authors by black presses is the equivalent to young brothers and sisters losing their lives to gun violence. (I would never say that.) And I'm not even saying that the black presses that have recently been accused of not paying their authors are only ripping off black authors. (I know that a few white authors and authors of other races have been victimized too.) I am saying that the majority of the authors being screwed by black presses are black authors. And therefore we can liken this rape and pillage of our labor and talents to a version of black on black crime.

I'm Blogging in Black today.

So, check out the rest of this post here:

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

A. C. Arthur's Love Me Like No Other

Here's the blurb for Love Me Like No Other:

What happens is Vegas is supposed to stay in Vegas. Not so for Jade Vincent who is experiencing a string of bad luck--from her fiancé stealing her inheritance to her younger sister getting into debt with a casino. The last thing Jade expected or even wanted was to see her college sweetheart again. Now, to save her sister, she's forced to make a deal with the devil!

Lincoln Donovan's life is just as he'd planned, only his plans looked much better on paper. But he's the oldest of the Triple Threat Brothers as is bound by their rules of no committed relationships. Linc is having a difficult time realizing what change his life needs…until she literally falls into his lap!

Here's what I thought of A. C. Arthur's Love Me Like No Other:

This book has so many feel good moments. So many I-have-to-put-it-down-and-fan-myself moments… So many I-have-to pick-it-right-back-up-because-it-is-too-good-to-me moments… It is hard to put it al into a short review. Arthur has created a romance novel to savor. I love Linc Donovan and Jade Vincent. But, I really love me some Linc. I'll just say that he has some lines in the book that make me happy I'm not the sister trying to resist him. He is irresistible. The story is fast paced, steamy and packs an emotional punch--just the kind of story I love. And the love scenes are hot, hot, hot. The characters feel real to me and Arthur writes their story in a way that makes it easy for me to get totally enthralled with their lives. Jade is a hard working sister trying to start up her business and look out for her only surviving relative, a screw-up little sister. Linc is a brother on a mission with lots of plans and goals. He wants to conquer the world and doesn't think he can do all that and have love too. That is until the one that he let slip away comes walking back into his life… Arthur takes the lovers-reunited plot and gives it a smooth and spicy remix. The dialogue is crisp, funny and engaging. And the side characters…well… let me just say that Arthur is setting up the Triple Threat Brothers series very nicely. I can't wait to see what she does with Linc's brothers Adam and Trent. My, my, my… All I can say is I can't wait for my next taste of the triple threat. I highly recommend this book. You won't be able to put it down!

Get a copy of Love Me Like No Other here:

(The book isn't in stores until December, but you can get it a month early at on-line and save 20%)

Find out more about A. C. Arthur here:

(A. C. Arthur will also be the January author interviewed for my blog. So, be sure to stop in for that and next month's author Deatri King-Bey.)

Happy reading,


Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The RAWSISTAZ Review is in!

I'm so happy! I just got another review for Divine Destiny! They gave it 4 and a half stars. So that means it will be a RAWSISTAZ Favorite! My first RAWSISTAZ Favorite! I'm so geeked! I really can't believe that in a couple of weeks I will be holding my third novel in my hands. Wow! This is just amazing to me. I sometimes can't believe that I am really living one of my biggest dreams.

Anyway, here's an excerpt from the review...

"DIVINE DESTINY was a well-written, thought-provoking novel that is sure to please.  I was in awe of the way the sacred mates were able to carry on a conversation by tapping into each other's minds, without anyone else being the wiser.  Bolton's paranormal storyline is infused with so many erotic scenes, readers will not be able to put this one down.  This was my first paranormal erotic romance, and I'm happy to say it certainly will not be the last.  I look forward to reading other works by this talented author."
Reviewed by Pamela Bolden of The RAWSISTAZ Reviewers

much love and peace,


Friday, November 10, 2006

Flavor of Love....

Am I the only one in the world who just doesn't get it? To be fair, I never really got "The Bachelor," "Joe Millionaire," "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire" or any of those other reality shows where multiple women compete for the love of one man. So, it's not just my incredulity at the thought that a group of women would be fighting over Flava Flav. But come on… For real? I mean… seriously… And the stuff these women do… I wouldn't do for any man, let alone Flav. So, somebody please tell me, what am I missing? What is the appeal? With those other reality win a man shows, I saw that folks might have been buying into the romance of it. Even then, I thought, so this is what feminists struggled for… so women could go on TV and compete for a rose from some clown, or a big clock necklace in the case of "Flavor of Love." Even if these women see this as their shot at stardom, it stills seems like a bit much. And if "Flavor of Love" is supposed to be some kind of spoof on all those other bachelor shows, the comedy is really lost on me. To be fair the extent of my watching the show is limited to catching a couple of episode during those marathons when they show them back-to-back-to-back. But I really don't understand how or why people watch. And that goes for "Flavor of Love" and "The Bachelor." So tell me good people… what am I missing? What is the appeal?

Much love and peace,


Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Embracing My Inner Bitch

A few years back, when I was an undergraduate at William Paterson College in New Jersey (I think it was my junior or senior year), I was taking an African American Studies course. I think I was one of two women in the class and the rest were guys. That was kind of odd now that I think of it, because usually women out number men on college campuses, especially black women… But that's another post for another day… Anyway, during this one class session, I got into a rather heated debate about Black leadership. And when I say heated, I mean heated. The tones and levels of voice were kicked up more than a notch. Then at one point, I guess the brother couldn't stand that this little girl was going toe to toe and not back down, because, he pulled out the B-word. Yep, he called me a bitch. I looked at him for a minute and asked him if he just called me a bitch. (No I didn't punch him dead in the eye and say who you calling a bitch like my girl Latifah. BTW, what's up, Dana! Holla at your girl!) At the time, I realized, just as I know now, that the dude only called me a bitch because I was speaking my mind and holding my space. He couldn't hang. So he threw out a word that was meant to shut me up. Poor fool didn't know that the sister was embracing her inner bitch. When he said yes, I called you a bitch, all arrogant and bold, I said thank you with a pleasant smile. I knew that I had done my job for the day. He sat there looking every bit of the idiot he was and probably still is. The other brothers in the class stepped right to him and demanded that he apologize to the sister. And he eventually did. But I really didn't need his apology. I vowed never to let self-righteous, pompous jerks try and shut me up. And I certainly wasn't going to let the word bitch stop me.

Many women are embracing the word bitch. And I don't pretend to have the answer as to whether or not that is a good thing or a bad thing. That's not the point of this post at all. The point is that sometimes (well, most times truth be told) I feel like embracing my inner bitch, my tell-it-like-it-is, stand-my-ground, take-no-shit, self. I subscribe to Bitch Magazine and I even have a collection of bitch magnets boldly displayed in my office. The heroine in my first romance novel is probably the closest to this part of my persona… even though I had to tone her way down. (I hope some of her bitchiness still shined through...)

I'll close by sharing some of the sayings on my bitch magnets and encouraging you all to embrace your inner bitch…

From the bitch magnet collection:

"You say I'm a bitch like it's a bad thing."

Control of

"That's Queen Bitch to you!"

"Extra-Strength Bitch"

"Life's a bitch and so am I."

"Being unstable & bitchy is all part of my mystique."

"The bitch is back!"

"Did you have a bowl of bitchy for breakfast or what?"

Bonus: Three that aren’t bitch magnets but are certainly related to the topic:

"Queen of fucking everything"

"The simple truth is… if the Queen had balls, she'd be King."

"What part of princess don't you understand?"

Have a great day and don't forget to embrace your inner bitch!


Saturday, November 04, 2006

November Interview with Author Wayne Jordan

GB: Hello, Wayne! Thanks so much for stopping by my blog and doing an interview. From the looks of things, you are a very busy man! So, I'm glad you could find a minute to stop by and chat. With that said… You are a teacher in Barbados. You're a writer with two published novels under your belt. You're the editor of the fantastic review site, Romance in Color. You host the Kimani boards at e-Harlequin. You also host the Kimani authors' website and yahoo groups. I'm getting tired just listing all the wonderful and amazing things you do. So, my first question is, how do you find time to do it all and do it all so well. And please let me know if I have left anything out!

WJ: Yes, you've left out singing in my church choir and being Director of the Performing Arts Department at my church. I teach Literature, Theatre Arts and Communication. It takes skillful planning, proper time management and very little sleep.

GB: I know that men can appreciate romance just as much as women. My husband pretends to put up a struggle when I get him to go to a romantic movie. And then he is just as engaged and captivated by a good romance as I am when it's all said and done. But society makes it so that we're almost trained to buy into stereotypes about what men and women are supposed to like. You have been very open about your love for romance novels and the years you have spent reading and appreciating the genre. Can you tell us a little bit about what it has been like to be both a reader and a writer in this genre as a man?

WJ: Initially, it wasn't easy. For years, I was a closet romance reader, and then when I reached my mid-twenties, I said "%#%$$ it. I can't change who I am. Of course, some people are amazed when I say I write romance, but the people who count, my family, friends, colleagues and students are proud of me.

GB: What has your journey to publication been like? Can you tell us a little bit about your journey from aspiring writer to published author?

WJ: It wasn't an easy journey, but I also believe I was fortunate. Many years ago, I submitted a manuscript to Harlequin and it was rejected. I gave up writing and concentrated on my academics. In the late 1990s I joined an online writing community and started to write again. I discovered Romance Slam Jam thanks to all the wonderful authors and readers I met online and entered the Heart and Soul contest in 2002, won, submitted my manuscript to BET/Arabesque a few years later and sold. Of course, I am forever thankful to Demetria Lucas who read my manuscript, loved it and decided she wanted me to be published under my own name. No female persona, thank God. I, along with R. Barri Flowers, became Arabesque's first male authors.

GB: I have to say that I've read both of your novels and I enjoyed them both immensely. I found the prose in both to be very poetic almost lyric... just beautiful really. Can you talk a little bit about your use of language? I know you have a background and an advanced degree in linguistics. Does this training influence your very captivating use of prose?

WJ: I love the language of poetry and find the writers of the romance period appealing. I love the sensuous nature of the romantic poets, in particularly, Keats. I also, being a linguist by academic qualification, believe that characters' uniqueness comes of the language they speak, so I pay special attention to that.

GB: Still on the language note, let's talk about the titles of your first novels: Capture the Sunrise and Embracing the Moonlight, as well as the location they are set in. Both titles are really very beautiful and call to mind such wonderful natural images. I know that both novels are set on your beautiful island home of Barbados. Can you tell us a little about how you came up with these titles? Also can we expect a third installment set in the same lovely locale?

WJ: The title for Capture the Sunrise actually came because it connected to the central theme of the book. I wanted each of the main characters, who had experienced darkness, to find the joy and happiness. I actually included a scene in the book where Alana, the heroine, sits waiting until the sun rises so she can compete a painting. Embrace the Moonlight, changed to Embracing the Moonlight by my editor, was in keeping with the previous book. There will be a third installment, Chasing Rainbows, which will be Daniel's story. At the end of Embracing the Moonlight, readers discover that Daniel's wife and child were killed in an accident. Chasing Rainbow, will be an inspirational fiction/romance, since Daniel, a man of God, will lose his faith. That story is currently just a synopsis since I'm working on a three book series, THE KNIGHTS OF BARBADOS. One Gentle Knight will be on sale July 2007, and To Love A Knight, November 2007. I'm not sure about the schedule of book three yet. Of course, as the title of the series indicate, the stories will mainly take place in Barbados.

GB: The novels each have an element of suspense in them. Do you think romantic suspense is an area of romance that you will continue to write in?

WJ: Romantic Suspense is my favorite genre and I definitely intend to continue writing in that genre.

GB: What are you working on now? What can readers expect from you in the future?

WJ: Opps, I jumped the gun and answered that question above. One Gentle Knight is one month away for being in my editor’s hands. Don't you just hate deadline?

GB: Yes. I do hate deadlines... On another note, you provide a wonderful service to readers and writers with Romance in Color. What made you create such a site? What kinds of exciting things can we expect from Romance in Color and your other important service, the Kimani Boards, in the future?

WJ: Romance in Color now has a full compliment of reviewers so readers can expect most of the books listed to be reviewed.

Expect to continue to see book discussions on the Kimani boards as well as online reads. Kimani TRU, our young adult series launches in February 2007. I would, however, like to see more fans of AA romance to frequent the boards.

GB: What are you reading right now?

WJ: Shirley Hailstock, My Lover, My Friend. Ms. Hailstock is a talented story teller. Wish she would give us books more frequent. After that, I'll be reading Catherine Mann's latest Intimate Moments, Fully Engaged.

GB: Do you have any advice that you would like to share with aspiring writers?

WJ: Hold on to your dream, write the best book you can, know the line you want to write for, and don’t be afraid to submit.

GB: How can readers best contact you?

WJ: or visit my website at, or visit me on the Kimani Community Boards

GB: Thanks so much for the interview, Wayne. I'm looking forward to more of your wonderful stories in the future! Take care!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Great New Book on Black Masculinity

So, in the spirit of Nikki and "black love is black wealth," I have to recommend this wonderful new book by Natalie Moore and Natalie Hopkinson. I loved it. This is a very important work. Pick up your copy today.

Here's what my alter ego, Gwendolyn D. Pough had to say about the book in her blurb for it:

"Hopkinson and Moore have written a groundbreaking and provocative book that shows what happens when you care enough to deconstruct. This very important work breaks down the myths surrounding Black masculinity in a way that inspires hope and points the way toward change. From Detroit hip-hop mayors to babydaddies, these women provide fuller pictures of Black masculinity and use their journalistic training to begin the healing. Brothers and sisters will find a place in this work to begin much needed dialogues and the world will find a space to see for the first time a real and honest critique of Black masculinity. A deconstruction done in love, this book is a must-read for all."

Much love and peace,