Monthly Archives: January 2014
Selfish? Greedy? A little bit dishonest? Yes, Shanelle Harper can be all of those things and then some, but deep down she’s just looking for what every woman’s looking for – real, honest-to-goodness love – the kind that makes the rough road getting there seem worthwhile.
Sometimes Shanelle will be the woman you love to hate, while other times she’ll be the woman you hate to love. Either way, with the unbearably sexy Sinclair brothers living right next door, who can blame her for the little white-lies? But then again…..it’s the big ones that come back to haunt her……
The sudden death of Shanelle’s father lures her back to the small town she thought she escaped years ago. Returning to Barrow County, Georgia means living under her mother’s roof again, although only to help make ends meet. Frustrated and seeking comfort following her loss, Shanelle quickly falls back into an old habit she thought she kicked years ago – a neighbor by the name of Abraham Lorenzo Sinclair, more affectionately known as “Zo”. Realizing that her feelings for him are practically woven into her DNA, Shan throws caution to the wind and jumps in headfirst – no matter how many warnings and signals her intuition has fired off.
The next six years of Shanelle’s life are a whirlwind of sex, lies, and betrayals that will leave your mind reeling from one enthralling chapter to the next. Family secrets, scandalous affairs, and enough sexual heat to ignite a fire……Shanelle’s emotionally-charged story has it all.
In the end, will Zo turn out to be the love of Shan’s life? Her biggest regret? Or will she find love and affection in the arms of someone who neither she nor Zo would’ve ever expected?
*****::::::::Grab a copy on Amazon tonight at midnight!::::::::*****
Thanks for stopping by!!! For more info about “Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob”, feel free to check out the cover image and two excerpts right here on my blog!
In the meantime, you can check out my two other books already available on Amazon!
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“I’d rather die enormous, than live dormant.” ~Jay-Z
Over the years, I’ve gone through somewhat of a metamorphosis. I instantly just thought of Franz Kafka’s disgusting allegorical visuals, but that’s not quite what I mean.
Back in the day, I was an extreme introvert. I’m still not exactly a social butterfly, but only because I’ve come to realize that being selective when it comes to friendship keeps down the riffraff. It’s more of a decided defense mechanism than anything else, but I digress. Coming from being a shy little girl to the strong, self-confident woman that I am today was not an overnight change. Today, I decided to reflect on how those changes came about.
I love lists. I’ve even posted a few here in my blog over the past few months. They’re easier to digest, concise, and effective. So, I’ve compiled a list that breaks down some of the tactics, practices and beliefs that I’ve adopted that have helped me transform over the years.
1) Learn to live for YOU…..not everyone else.
It’s hard for us to accept that we can’t always make everyone around us happy, but it’s the cold, hard truth; pleasing everyone around you is an impossibility. For that reason, when faced with the decision of doing what works for you and doing what works for others, you should win that toss-up every time. Disclaimer: I’m not promoting selfishness, but I am promoting self-awareness. Be aware of what sacrifices you are and are NOT willing to make for someone else’s happiness.
2) “He who says he can, and he who says he can’t, are usually both right.” ~Confucius~
Found this quote yesterday and it spoke to me instantly! Truer words have never been spoken. We have to move past a place of doubt to a place of belief in our own capabilities. We can literally…..LITERALLY do anything that we put our minds to (as long as our goals don’t involve defying the laws of physics and all that jazz. Be realistic.) I don’t care if EVERYONE you share your dreams with tells you that you’re crazy. They’re only right if you let them be, which brings me to my next point
3) You can’t tell everyone where you’re going.
I heard a quote somewhere that went something like “Don’t go to the hardware store expecting to buy milk”. Abstract, I know, but it’s really quite profound. What I took from it is that you can’t go to people who are notoriously unsupportive looking for support. If you’re surrounded by dream killers, expect them to try to kill your dreams too. Sometimes, you have to keep your journey and destination to yourself to avoid being discouraged.
4) You’re not really successful until you’ve taught someone else to do what you do.
I think it’s an abomination to learn a skill, identify all the stumbling blocks and shortcuts, achieve success…….and then keep alllllllll that knowledge and insight to yourself. Who does that!?!? If I figure something out that works, I can’t WAIT to tell people how I did it. I’m a firm believer in bringing other people up with me and helping them learn to become self-sufficient to the point that they too can help others achieve their goals. Remember where you came from. Whether you did it all on your own, or you had help along the way, you understand what I’m saying here.
5) Think it true.
This is my last point (not because I don’t have more to say, but because I don’t want you to think I’m rambling). Set your mind on where you’re going, not where you’ve been, or even where you are today. I watched this documentary on Netflix called “The Secret” (pretty sure it’s on YouTube too) that really, REALLY changed my life. It changed the way I think entirely. I began to envision myself as a success and achieving my goals, and what I found is this: it doesn’t have to be some big mystical event, but once you focus on your goals, you’re more aware of staying the course. After watching the film and letting it sink in, I was less easily distracted by outside interference, more motivated to work, and more optimistic – all factors that directly relate to being successful.
That’s it for now, but I’m definitely interested in what others have to say! Feel free to add to the list or give me your feedback! Also, if you’ve seen the film, what’d you think? Don’t forget to subscribe!
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Okay, so I’m a mom of three, ranging from ages 6 to 9. Anyone with children knows that you CANNOT always filter what they say or catch them before they do something completely embarrassing out in public. Right? Right. So, to make moms and dads everywhere feel just a little bit better about their own children’s buffoonery, I’ve decided to share a few of my kids’ slip ups and tomfoolery that I’ve had the “pleasure” of witnessing over the years. Enjoy! And feel free to share some of your own experiences too in the comment section below. I’d love to hear them!
1) “Mommy? Do midgets have to drive minivans?”
2) My son to the cashier at a store that I am NEVER VISITING AGAIN: “Heyyyy…..where’d you get that moustache? My dad has one of those!”
3) “Mommyyyyy…….my butt’s sick”
4) At the doc’s with my oldest (age 3 at the time), “Mommy! That lady looks like ‘Big Momma’s House’!”
5) My youngest walked up to a girl whooooooo……mmmmmm…….isn’t the most attractive girl in the world? Yeah, we’ll say it like that. After tapping the girl on the leg, she asks, “What happened to your face?”
6) “Why do some men have boobs too?”
7) “I don’t wanna have a wife. It looks like too much work.”
8) “Do babies come from your bellybutton?” Followed up with the question, “Well how do they get in there?”
9) “Mommy? What are those ‘packets’ boys have behind their privates?”
10) Sniffing random chairs when people would get up from them
11) My oldest sleepwalks. She woke up from a dead sleep, came into my bedroom at 2 a.m., slaps my husband on the leg and yells, “Tag! You’re it!” Once we stopped laughing, we got her back to bed.
12) Right after a bath, my youngest (2 at the time) dug her Winnie the Pooh lifejacket out of the closet and proceeded to sit in the toilet while wearing it – fully clothed. I walked in to find her with her arms propped up on the seat like she was in a hot tub.
13) At age 2, my son was bathing in the tub in my bedroom while I was on my laptop writing at the vanity. I looked up at the precise moment that he’s placing a log of his own feces on the edge of the tub. I’m still bitter about that…..
14) For a month straight, my son would scale the stones of our fireplace pretending to be Spiderman.
15) I got a call from the school a couple months ago from the principal, informing me that my son (age 7 now) was in the clinic complaining that his heart stopped beating a few times in class and he needed me to come take him to the doctor.
Out of the mouths of babes, I guess! Remember to comment or share!!
For a number of reasons, I’ve been holding on to this particular post for quite some time. When I started blogging not too long ago, I didn’t want to only blog about writing or my books because there is sooooo much more to me than that. That part of my life is really secondary in the big scheme of things. I’m a real woman, with real problems, and I go through real situations just like everyone else, which is why I always strive to keep it one hundred ALL the time. However, I simply didn’t have it in me to make public this deeply personal memory that is still a very sensitive topic of conversation for me to this day. A close friend was the one who inspired me to be “completely open”, so I’m about to take her advice for a test drive…..here goes.
My last words to her were so meaningless that I can’t even recall what they were. It was late on a Tuesday and I was straightening up my house while balancing the phone on my shoulder as we talked. She wasn’t feeling well, but that wasn’t out of the norm, so I assumed she’d be back to herself in a few days. Upset stomach. Cold sweats. “Do you think it’s your ulcer acting up again?” I asked at some point, to which she answered, “That’s what I’m thinking, but…….I just don’t know.” In hindsight, I should’ve heard that something was different in her tone when she said that. It was like she knew something wasn’t right, but didn’t want to alarm me or didn’t want to admit it even to herself. We chatted a little while longer, even laughed a bit, and then her phone dropped the call mid-conversation. As I mentioned, I was busy with my domestics and thought it’d just be easier to call her back later when we were both settled. Thinking back, I struggle with so much guilt for not trying to get her back on the line then, but remember…..I thought we had more time.
While her evening SHOULD have ended with a kiss to each of her sons’ foreheads and a sleepy conversation beside her husband in bed, instead she spent this night in a cold, unfamiliar hospital, conscious for only a while before slipping into a coma that she’d never wake up from. Days passed. I remember standing by her bedside thinking – “Any minute now, you’re gonna wake up, and we’re gonna get to talk about how crazy this has all been.” I imagined the way the conversation would go and everything. To me, she had way too much fight in her for this to be the end. Trust me, we’d fought with each other enough for me to know that she doesn’t give up easily. Her hand was still warm when I held it, but machines were the only thing keeping her here with us. This wasn’t what she wanted.
A couple weeks before this sudden decline, there were two key conversations that took place between us that, again, should have let me know that she felt this coming. First, she showed me her life insurance papers and said that she was going to be changing her will, leaving her two most precious gifts (her sons) in my possession if something were to happen to her and her husband both. Second, she called one afternoon with sadness in her voice as she expressed a sudden fear of dying after reading a Facebook post in a lupus awareness group that she’d joined. A fellow member whom she conversed with often, passed away suddenly, leaving my sister all too aware of how fragile life can be. “I’m afraid that this will happen to me,” she said, choking back a tear or two.
As the chance of her waking up and coming back to us seemed to drift further and further away, all I could think about was what a tragedy it was that she’d brought two beautiful boys into the world and would never get to see them become men. Never get to see them become husbands, fathers, and would never get to hold her grandchildren. An absolute tragedy.
On a cold morning in February, surrounded by so much love and sadness, she slipped away quietly on her 33rd birthday. Losing my sister is one loss that I will NEVER get over. It took months to stop reaching for the phone when something funny, or sad, or random would cross my mind. I’d constantly have to relive the realization that she isn’t here anymore. In dreams, she’d come to me and we’d talk and laugh and hug, but waking up brought back the sting of her death morning after morning. I found solace in John Mayer’s “Dreaming with a Broken Heart”; I know he was talking about romantic love, but the words fit my state of mind so well.
Almost two years have passed and it still hurts like it did on day one. I should have called back. I should have listened for the deeper meaning in our last conversations. I just should’ve known. Somehow it all went over my head and I ended up saying my final “I love you” while she lie unconscious in a hospital bed. I guess what I’m trying to say is, make the most of the chances that you get to tell the ones closest to you how you feel while they’re still here. No matter how much time we THINK we should have to say and do what we need to, the bottom line is, our days here are numbered. So, because no one can predict the future or alter the past, the best time to say ‘I love you’…..is right now.
As always, feel free to share your thoughts.