Tag Archives: writing

HAPPY NEW YEAR: Thank You For Your Support

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The year of our lord 2016 has arrived which comes with our new year’s resolutions. Last year was a very bad year regarding justice, civil rights, and what I would describe as a war on black people. My wish for the new year is the same prayer black people have been praying for nearly four-hundred years; STOP KILLING BLACK PEOPLE AND TREAT US FAIR.

Lately, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a Happy New Year and to express, humbly, my sincerest appreciation to all of my friends and everyone who follow’s THOUGHT PROVOKING PERSPECTIVES. This is also to include everyone who reads my words and to all who share my thoughts with others through social media platforms.

THANK YOU!!!

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Thought Provoking Perspectives is designed to be a potent source of empowering knowledge to broaden the information base with those who share my passion for the written word.

Let me offer a personal thought:

“I firmly believe education is the single most important ingredient necessary to neutralize those forces that breed poverty and despair… You only have a minute. Sixty seconds in it. Didn’t choose it, can’t refuse it, it’s up to you to use it. It’s just a tiny little minute but an eternity in it! You can change the world but first you must change your mind.” @JohnTWills

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A MUST READ!!! copy


“Just a Season”

A MUST READ!!! Just a Season is a luminous story into the life of a man who, in the midst of pain and loss, journeys back in time to reexamine all the important people, circumstances, and intellectual fervor that contributed to the richness of his life.

It is a must read novel that will cause you to see the world through new eyes. One reviewer said, “This is the stuff movies are made of… not since “Roots” have I read a story that so succinctly chronicles an African American story!” Another said, “Not since The Color Purple have I read a book that evoked such emotions…[more reviews below]

PRELUDE 

A season is a time characterized by a particular circumstance, suitable to an indefinite period of time associated with a divine phenomenon that some call life. One of the first things I learned in this life was that it is a journey. During this passage through time I have come to realize that there are milestones, mountains, and valleys that everyone will encounter. Today, I have to face a valley and it’s excruciating. It’s June 28th, a day that I once celebrated as a very special day. Now, it’s filled with sorrow. The reason this day is different from all others is because I have come to the cemetery at Friendly Church. 

Normally it’s hot and humid as summer begins, but not so today. It’s a cool gray day with the sky slightly overcast. I hear the echo of birds chirping from a distance. There is also a mist or a light fog hovering very near the ground that gives the aura of a mystical setting.  This is a place where many of my family members who have passed away rest for eternity.  Some have been resting here for over a hundred years. I have grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, a sister, and many friends here as well. The cemetery is in the most tranquil of places secluded from the rest of the world, very peaceful and beautiful, almost like being near the gateway of heaven.

My heart aches today because I have come here on what would have been my son’s birthday. This is a very hard thing for me to do as the natural order suggests it should be the other way around. Another difficulty is that this is the first time I will see his headstone that was put in place just a few days ago. Although I know what it should look like, it’s going to be hard to actually see it. It will indicate the finality of losing the dearest of all human beings.  It’s hard to imagine what the rest of my life will be like without my precious son.

As I pass Granddaddy’s gravesite, I stop to say hello. After a brief moment, I continue in the direction of my son’s resting place. As I get closer, I begin to receive a rush of emotion to the point that my movements slow as the sight comes into view. I can now see his name clearly and I whisper “God why did you take him?” I become numb as I finally arrive at his gravesite, overwhelmed with this never before known emotion. This is something I never thought I would ever have to do, but here I am!!!

Suddenly, the sky begins to clear somewhat, as I now feel the sun’s rays from above.  At this very moment, I receive an epiphany upon reading the dates inscribed on the stone.  1981 – 2001. What does this really mean? The beginning and the end, surely, but in the final analysis it is just a tiny little dash that represents the whole life of a person. I fall to my knees realizing the profound impact of that thought causing me to look to the heavens and wonder. If someone, for whatever reason, were to tell the story concealed within my dash.   What might they say?

Chapter One

The story begins in late November 1951 on a clear sunny Sunday afternoon. It was fairly cool for an autumn day and as it was the custom in the Reid family, everyone had gone to church early to give praise to the Lord. This was a special day for this family. It was a special day because of their anticipation of a new member into the family. So it was a great, great feeling of joy and excitement that filled their home. Ruth and Josie did not attend church this day, because Josie was overdue and expecting to give birth at anytime…

Praise for “Just a Season”

And the journey continues with “Legacy – A New Season”…

book 1

FaceBook @ John T. Wills
Twitter @ John T. Wills

 


That Literary Lady

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Yolanda M. Johnson-Bryant, also known as That Literary Lady, is an author, freelance writer, public speaker and consultant. Yolanda became a published author in 2004, with her debut novel “My Daughter’s Keeper.” She followed up with her sophomore novel in 2005 with “Circumstances.” In 2012 she released “Revelations” and is pegged to release “27 Flagship Cove” in January 2013.

Yolanda began writing at an early age. She wrote poetry as a child and wrote lyrics to songs performed by her high school girl band. She knew this writing thing was more than just a hobby when, in 1999, she entered a short story contest sponsored by Playboy Magazine and Fastweb.com. Yolanda won the first place prize of $1500. From there she started her first manuscript and nearly a dozen story lines were created.

After sending letters to agents and getting a rejection letter from one agent and no response at all from another, Yolanda set out to learn everything she could about the publishing and literary industry and decided to self-publish her work. After experiencing various growing pangs in the industry, she decided to be a resource and help other writers and authors who sought to self-publish. She consults writers in the processes of self-publishing, marketing, social media and entrepreneurship.

Having an educational background in computer sciences and information technology, Yolanda has also been fascinated with the evolution and advances of technology and social media venues. She always strives to be on the cutting edge of technology and social promotion.

Yolanda often offers consultation, workshops and classes advocating both youth and adult literacy. Through her company, Literary Wonders! and Literary Wonders Kids!, she conducts scholarship and anthology projects and considers herself a valuable resource to the literary and publishing communities.

Yolanda gives workshops and classes in the community to promote literacy and entrepreneurship. She has participated with such organizations as the Greensboro Public Library, Christians in the Marketplace, The Nussbaum Center of Entrepreneurship and Women’s Entrepreneurship Learning and Leading, (W.E.L.L.). She currently volunteers with Junior Achievement, the Volunteer Center of Greensboro and is a mentor for The Women’s Resource Center’s New Choices Program.

Yolanda is the Area 42 Governor for North Carolina District 37, Division E Toastmasters. She serves as Vice President of Education for Speakerpreneur Toastmasters, is a current and charter member of MprovMasters Toastmasters and is the Assistant Division Governor of PR for Division E Toastmasters.

Connect with Yolanda on these social networks:

Facebook Fan Pages – https://www.facebook.com/YolandaJohnsonBryant, https://www.facebook.com/ThatLiteraryLady
Twitter – @ymjauthor, @thtliterarylady
Blog: http://lwtheauthorshideaway.blogspot.com/
Podcast/Radio Show – http://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/on-the-air-with-that-literary/id498160831

Websites:
www.yolandamjohnson.com
www.thatliterarylady.com
www.bryantconsultingonline.com
www.lwmediagroup.com
www.literarywonders.com
www.literarywonderskids.com
www.sweetheartsofthetriad.rr.com

Author Interview

Would you like to introduce yourself to readers?

Hello all! I am Yolanda M. Johnson-Bryant, also known as that Literary Lady. I’m originally from Denver, Colorado but currently live in the Piedmont Triad area of North Carolina with my wonderful husband. I am the author of several books, the latest being Revelations. I am currently working on a few titles due out in 2013. I am a freelance writer and columnist. I am also the host of “On the Air With That Literary Lady” which is podcasted on iTunes. I am the mother of two grown children and three beautiful grandchildren.

What is your current or most recent project?

I have several projects in the works. I recently created Sweethearts of the Triad, an organization that recognizes women entrepreneurs and community servers. We will be having our first annual Sweetheart of the Year Luncheon in December. I am working on 27 Flagship Cove, my first novel in the Tommie Lane Christian Thriller Series; Someone to Watch Over Me, my first teen book and the first book in my That Literary Lady Knows Series, that will address everything from public speaking to publishing, to social media.

What are you planning to write next?

I will continue with my Tommie Lane Christian Thriller Series, the That Literary Lady Knows Series, and a novel about domestic violence. In addition, readers have told me they’d like to see more of Renee Matthews, so I will be penning that at the end of 2013.

Are you a member of a writers group? Have you attended writing courses or seminars? Have these been helpful to you?

Currently, I a member of several online writing groups. I have weaned off most of my offline writing groups due to my busy schedule. I attend writing workshop on a regular as well as conduct them. I find that some are helpful, while others aren’t helpful. That isn’t to say they are not helpful to someone that is less experienced.

Have you other interests outside of writing? What do you do with your spare time?

I know this is an oxymoron for a writer to say, but I also love to read. In addition, I love to spend time with my husband, talking trash about sports—he’s a Broncos fan and I’m a Cowboys fan. I love interior decorating, so I’m always doing something around the house. I also do a lot of community work.

What’s the most useful ‘how to’ advice you’ve encountered?

Being a business owner, my writing often takes a backseat to my clients. With that being said, the most useful advice, not necessarily how-to, came from my husband recently. He said, “Babe, you’re always helping everyone else. You’ve helped people that were less experienced than you, now they have more books out than you. You need to take some time to do you.” And, this is so true. It’s okay to help others, but not at the risk of losing your dream.

Tell us a little about your book(s).

Circumstances – Renee Matthews is desperately searching for inner peace and her rightful place in life. She is daunted by a mentally abusive, self-proclaimed spiritual mother—Barbara Jean Jackson—who keeps her torn between her personal insecurities and her desire to love and to be loved.

She succumbs to fear as she turns down the proposal of long-time friend, Charlie Thatcher, in fear of his racist mother. Trying to reclaim her life, Renee falls in love with Stuart Humphries, a man she met over the Internet. Within Stuart’s past, lies a secret that even he has yet to learn while within Renee’s past, a secret lies in wait for its resurrection, with hopes of destroying everyone, including Renee.

Revelations – In Circumstances, Renee Matthews left behind the painful memories of Denver and her mother, Barbara Jean, for promises of happiness in San Diego. With a prominent position at one of the country’s largest securities firm, Renee has found financial security, self-acceptance, friendship, and love with Stuart Humphries—this is until Barbara Jean interrupts her wedding with a bombshell of a secret that will change everyone’s life forever.

Now, the tables have turned. Barbara Jean has fallen ill, and the only person she can count on is her daughter. In spite of all Barbara Jean has done to destroy Renee, she is at her mother’s side. Being ill doesn’t change Barbara Jean’s feelings for her daughter and Renee soon finds out why it is that her mother despises her so much.

The more time Renee spends in Denver with her ailing mother and her family, the more family secrets are revealed. Renee wonders if she will survive the revelations that make up her world, or if her mother will ultimately destroy her.

27 Flagship Cove – Detective Tommie Lane is a veteran of the Greensboro Police Department and following in her father’s footsteps. A serial killer is on the loose and he’s targeting prominent Christian women and leaving a trail all the way from Denver to Greensboro. Det. Lane and her crew must catch the killer before she becomes one of the “Holy Roller” killer’s victims.

What genre do you consider yourself?

I hate putting myself in a box because you’ll never know which direction I’ll come from, but if I absolutely had to put myself in a category, it would simply be women’s issues. Everything I write is geared towards women, whether it is a fiction title, a non-fiction title or a business title, but it can be utilized by all.

Why do you write? Is it something you’ve always done, or always wanted to do? Or is it something that you started fairly recently?

I write because it enables me to express myself and be creative. In the interim, I am able to help others. God has given me many revelations and things to write about, not to mention, my life is full of great material. If I could do nothing else, I would write. If I didn’t get paid for it, I’d still write. Writing is who and what I am.

Where can we purchase your books?

My books can be purchased on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and on my websites: www.yolandamjohnson.com, www.thatliterarylady.com.

For other outlets, just “Google me!”

http://johntwills.com


Sing A New Song

SingaNewSongAbout The Book

If you found out you were dying, would you suddenly confess all your past sins?

When former chart-topper Tiffany Knightly learns that she’s dying from cancer, she leaves behind her plush California lifestyle to return to Hempstead, New York, with Karlie, her reluctant teenage daughter. Her fans think she has simply gone home to die, but Tiffany has another mission. She desperately wishes she could leave her past in the past, but in order to secure her daughter’s future, she must tear open past wounds.

Life wasn’t always easy for Tiffany. With a stepfather who abused her and a mother who didn’t believe her, she acted out by becoming promiscuous. Fifteen years later, she’s back to reveal to her ex-husband that he might not be Karlie’s biological father. In fact, there are four men who could have fathered Karlie—four that she’s willing to acknowledge, anyway.

As Tiffany reveals her truth and searches for Karlie’s father, she reconnects with old friends and old lovers. Some reunions are happy, but some innocent lives are torn apart, leaving Tiffany to wonder if she’s doing the right thing. Through it all, she will have to learn to rely on the healing power of God’s unfathomable love.

Character Interview

  1. Please tell the readers who are the main characters?
  2. The main characters in SING A NEW SONG are Tiffany Knightly, Karlie Knightly, Neil and Myra Jameson.
  3.  What or is there conflict in the story?
  4. There is conflict. Tiffany Knightly has to accept her gruesome past and admit to four men she slept with that they might be her daughter’s father.
  5. Which characters in “are you most like?
  6. This really was a work of fiction, and the characters lives and situations do not have any of my experiences or personalities. If I absolutely had to choose, I would say Neil because he was an empathetic listener and real friend.

Q. Take us inside “your book” What are two major events taking place?

One major event is the scene where Tiffany reveals to her ex-husband, Thomas, that he may not be the father of her teenage daughter, Karlie.

A second major event is when Tiffany confesses to her best friend, Myra that she had slept with four men in the span of one month.

Q. Are your characters from the portrayal of real people?

My characters represent people everyone knows and can relate to, but they are not based on anyone in my personal life.

About The Author

Michelle-PicOriginally from Jamaica West Indies, Michelle Lindo-Rice graduated from Argosy University with an Education Specialist degree in Education Leadership. A pastor’s kid, Michelle continues to uphold the faith, preaching, teaching and ministering through praise and worship. From a young teen, Michelle discovered a passion for reading and writing and feels blessed to have the opportunity to use this talent to bring God glory.

Genre Christian Inspirational/Fiction

Connect with the Author

Email Address: ricemz@yahoo.com
Website www.michellelindorice.com
Twitter link @mlindorice
Facebook link www.facebook.com/michelle.lindorice

Order Your Copy

Amazon

Barnes & Nobles

Tour schedule

Praise for “Just a Season”

Legacy – A New Season

book 1

FaceBook @ John T. Wills
Twitter @ John T. Wills

Designing Your Life with Carla: “For Women Only”

afe1220a-8bc2-44fb-967e-3c4c8d4bc98d_newtimelineYou are cordially invited to tune in to Designing Your Life with Carla, Friday April 12 at 4:00 pm (est) as Carla Armstrong interviews John T. Wills; author, speaker, former professor, teacher, publisher, blogger, a contributor to newspapers and online magazines.

He is the Executive Producer of the most dynamic and exciting literary radio show on the Internet airwaves; “The Book Tree Radio Show” designed to promote literacy, showcase authors, writers, wordsmiths, poets and other relevant content to empower the minds of a broad base community.

John will be sharing thoughts For Women Only and discussing his new book, “Legacy – A New Season”. It is the sequel and the continuation of “Just a Season” and a stand-alone story rich in history on a subject rarely explained to children of this generation concerning the African American struggle.

From his Publicist: John is currently scheduling speaking engagements, book signing. He is available for all media contacts, interviews and opportunities as a contributing writer.

Praise for Just a Season

CONTACT INFORMATION

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http://johntwills.com
FaceBook @ John T. Wills

Like my FaceBook Page
Twitter @ John T. Wills
Blog: Thought Provoking Perspectives

Email: johntwills@ymail.com

Tune in online: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/designingyourlife

Call in to speak with John or Carla at (347) 215-9751.


JUMPER

The roar of thunder and the flash of lightning tearing violently across the dark sky made Ann Joplin cower like a child in the corner of her bedroom. The rain pelted heavily against the window pane, as the lightning caused her to jump and shudder. When the rain eased up, she hopped into her bed and pulled the covers tightly up to her chin. She instinctively grabbed the phone to call her mother before realizing there would be no answer on the other end of the line.

“I miss you mom. We were so close,” Ann said as a tear slid down her face. Instantly, her mind went back to two months ago when she flew from New York to Arizona to bury Martha, who had succumbed to leukemia. Her mother was in so much pain towards the end and Ann would constantly make trips to be by her side. She was thankful that her mother had such a great circle of friends who gave her so much support that Ann was able to keep her job in New York. At one point, she considered giving it all up and relocating to Arizona, but her mother was against it.

Her life was now without its center. Being an only child raised by a single mother had formed a tight bond between them. When Ann had a bad day, she would call and cry to her mother. When she had problems with the men in her life, her mother comforted her. When she got passed over for a promotion because her boss owed his friend a favor, her mother supported and encouraged her to move on.

Now that her mother was gone, who could she turn to? Not her boyfriend — he had left her to follow a spiritual path in Indonesia. Not her closest friend, she just got married and moved with her new husband to Texas. For years, she had suffered from bouts of insecurity and depression, and now it was more heightened. So, with no one around, she wiped away her tears, squeezed her eyes shut, and forced herself to sleep.

Ann opened the attachment and stared at the photograph of Missy Flint. Then it clicked, they had been roommates at Hunter College fifteen years ago. Her hands trembled as she read more of the story. Missy was married to a successful businessman with two kids and was on her way to opening a drug rehabilitation center on Long Island. “What was she doing in the Bronx?” she thought. As she picked up her pen and was about to make some notes, she was startled by the phone ringing on her desk.

“Ann, I need to see you in my office right now,” Mr. Bellows demanded. He was a gruff man of sixty who had been in the newspaper industry for over thirty years. Over the years, she had watched him hire and fire many of her co-workers, sometimes for no good reason. But since her mother died, she must admit that she saw a more compassionate side of him. Recently, he had been cracking the whip at her and everyone else because his wife had served him divorce papers two days ago at the office. That wasn’t any of her concern, because she had enough of her drama to deal with.

She pushed back her chair with dread, got up and slowly walked towards his office. She tapped gently on the door. “Come on in Ann, please have a seat,” he said dryly, as he stubbed out the butt of his cigar in the ash stray.

Ann’s nose wrinkled at the smell she had to endure every time he asked to see her in his office. Even though the entire office building was designated a “non-smoking” area, Mr. Bellows felt it didn’t apply to him and dared anyone to report it to the building management.

She sat across from him in the most uncomfortable chair which was covered in a fabric that made her skin itch. She hoped this meeting wouldn’t take long so she could get back to work and find out more about Missy. “Ann, I don’t know how to tell you this..,” Mr. Bellows paused, “but we have to let you go.”

Ann’s eyes blinked as if processing what he had said to her. Her stomach dropped when it registered that she was being fired. She asked, slightly above a whisper, “But why?” Her palms began to sweat and she rubbed them together. A bead of perspiration formed on her forehead as she tapped her feet, a habit of hers when she felt anxious.

“Ann, I think you are a bright girl. But, there have been some complaints about your work lately,” he said, as he leaned his heavy body back in his chair and clasped his hands behind his head.

Ann knew that she had missed a few deadlines, but thought that management would understand. Mr. Bellow’s condescending tone made it clear that it didn’t. In this business, like any other fledgling for profit business, errors were frowned upon.

Mr. Bellows continued, “We’re sorry for your loss, but you still have a job to do. The rest of the staff can’t keep carrying you by covering up your mistakes. This is something I can’t overlook. I’m truly sorry.”

“But I can fix this,” she pleaded, hoping that he would be moved by her pleas. Instead, he responded, “Stan from HR will be talking to you.” He looked at his watch. “Um, he’ll be at your cubicle at around ten.”

“That doesn’t give me much time. I need boxes…”

“They are already at your desk. All you need to do is gather up your things. Security will escort you out by eleven,” he said, dismissively.

She walked out of his office in silence, not having the will to argue, beg or plead for her job. Maybe it was time to move on, she thought. When she got to her desk, she shook her head at the sight of the boxes on her chair, wondering how long they had been planning this. She picked up them up and threw them on the floor. There is no way I’m going to face Stan and have him mumble my benefits to me. What would be the point? So she powered down her computer, picked up her bag and left the boxes sitting on the floor.

She stood in front of the elevator, took a deep, long breath, then hit the UP button. When the doors dinged open at the fifteenth floor, she got off the elevator, walked to the side door and exited to the rooftop. Her eyes adjusted to the sunlight as she made her way to the ledge of the building. She held her face up towards the sky and basked in the warmth of the sun’s rays. Her body felt relaxed, she felt free.

“Jump,” a voice inside of her head commanded her. “You have nothing to live for. Just do it!”

She didn’t fight the voice. She was tired: tired of fighting traffic every day, tired of being misunderstood, tired of trying to prove herself in a dead-end job, and tired of everyone she loved always leaving her.

When she was a child, her mother used to sing her nursery rhymes so she could fall asleep. Her mother’s soothing voice comforted her. But her mother couldn’t comfort her anymore.

Now, she began singing her favorite nursery rhyme, “London Bridge Is Falling Down.” A smile crept up on her face. She took off her shoes, threw her bag on the ground, and stepped up onto the ledge. She looked down with no fear at the crowd of people rushing by to go places, taxicabs cutting other drivers off, policemen directing traffic, billboards blinking advertisements, and tourists taking pictures.

“I’m done with it all.” She closed her eyes, and extended out her arms. She was ready to jump.

Suddenly, she felt a hand resting gently on her right shoulder. “No, my love. Not like this I love you,” a soothing voice said. The voice started to sing, “Hush Little Baby…”

Was this a dream? Ann asked herself. Slowly she opened her eyes and looked around, but no one was there. For a moment, everything stood still until a dove flew up and flapped its wings in front of her. As she looked up to the sky, she felt her mother’s energy and said, “Thank you, mom.”

Deliah Lawrence

Author, “Gotta Let It Go”

Finalist – 2011 Next Generation Indie Book Awards (multi-cultural fiction category)

Blog: www.vocalexpressions.blogspot.com

Website: www.thewritepen.webs.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/thewritepen

Twitter: www.twitter.com/thewritepen

http://johntwills.com


Smiley and West on the 2012 Election

I am proud of any person regardless of color, but particularly any person of color, who achieves that which has been denied by the system. Most African Americans understand that the election of president Obama is far better than the alternative, without question. I will go on to say that I respect intelligence and possess black pride. I also know we are granted freedom of speech which means you have the right to your opinion.

I am concerned and wonder exactly what point brothers Smiley and West are trying to make or where they are coming from. Most of us know the history of our struggle and getting to this place in time is a monumental achievement. As black people, we know injustice more profoundly than any other culture.

Dr. King spoke and marched to divest poverty. President Johnson declared a War on Poverty nearly fifty years ago and yet there is more poverty than ever before. As intelligent as both men are – they should know it is the product of the mighty. I cannot recall these two expressing such a strong voice in opposition of the last administration, which by the way contributed more to poverty than any other administration in modern times.

So can someone explain why they blame President Obama? I would like to ask what you think of this diatribe.

Please comment and give me a Thought Provoking Perspective!

http://johntwills.com

Legacy – A New Season 

AMAZON

Just a Season


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