Wednesday, May 23, 2018

I Came. I Saw. I Conquered. Then, I Left...

And I am okay with my decision...

For so long, there was a time that I wanted to be an "active author" and I was.

I was blessed in 2017, throughout the entire year, to be just that and so much more. I felt the highs and the lows of being in the public eye, even if it was a small public. I even became "known"! I had a person actually fan girl over me and I wanted to cry! Not sad tears, but happy tears. Overjoyed tears. Tears of a kind of happiness that I have only dreamed about. I was becoming known among other authors as well. My peers. My equals. I was "one of them" and it felt fucking amazing.

But then, I woke up and I didn't want to live that life anymore.

I didn't want to be known or fan girled over. I didn't want to be an equal with anyone any more. I just wanted to be... Me...

An individual...

I didn't feel as though I stood out anymore for I was just one of many...

Plus, there is so much work that goes into that life and I was blessed to have a support system that helped me carry whatever load I had to carry, when I had to carry it. However, for me, that load was becoming more of a job, a hassle, than it should've been.  Or, maybe, it was supposed to be that way, always be that way, but that is not what I wanted it to become to me. And from there, it became other things...

Competition... Because let's face it, the majority of the other authors kept spouting that it was a business and when I think business, I think "dog eat dog". Sadly, that's how many of the authors I crossed paths with behaved; as if there weren't like an endless amount of readers out there. But hey, what do I know?

Icky... Because practically no one trusts the other. Remember, we're supposed to be in competition with one another? Why would I share with you ANYTHING that I am writing about so that you can turn around and write about it yourself?

Exclusive... Because grown people still have a high school mindset. I never fit in in high school and I was okay with that. I was an individual and I wouldn't change it for the world, so it stands to reason that I am okay with that sort of behavior elsewhere in my life. However, watching other authors desperately try to be included reminded me of the very individuals I pitied in high school and I realized then that some things never change.

There are other things it became but I dare not list them for fear of this post being perceived as a negative one. For me, the ugly started to outshine the beautiful. The negative the positive.  And honestly, I just couldn't handle the dark cloud anymore. I had to save myself before something that meant so much to me, that drove me in the direction that I have taken, became something utterly toxic.

Understand, I had a tremendous amount of positive experiences and I formed bonds with some absolutely amazing authors; some of which I actually had the pleasure of meeting in person! Those bonds I feel will be everlasting and I am grateful for that. My "active author" experience was more positive than negative but I live in a mental world where any negative at all, completely taints all that is positive.

I can't say that I am done forever, because no one knows what the future holds; however, I am done for now...

Sunday, December 31, 2017

There Was Something About 2017...

That was completely different than the years prior....

Sitting here on the eve of the new year, I excitedly flashback on all of what 2017 brought me. Doing so has actually made me rather anxious to see what 2018 is going to bring. Ordinarily, when it comes NYE, I experience a host of emotions. It's almost like an extreme energy comes over me and I can't seem to think straight. I don't know why, nor can I explain it, but for some reason, it didn't happen this year.

Could it be that I may have fulfilled some subconscious goal within myself throughout the year that I am okay to end one year and begin another? Even though another year is, in all essence, just another day.

It was something about 2017 that made it stand out more than years prior. I would like to believe it was because I stepped completely out of my comfort zone when it came to my literary career. I published two books, was super active on my professional Facebook page, networked more than ever, posted a lot more to my Twitter and Instagram accounts, I did over 200 author interviews for my blog, I did editing for clients 10 out of the 12 months this year, and I even attended quite a few poetry events and author events (some author events were even out of state). Yet, still, there was something extremely different about 2017.

Dare I say that there was growth? Or could it be that I was more focused than I have ever been in my entire life. More focused than I was in high school and even still, more focused than I was in college. With each of those, I had a goal to achieve. A finish line to reach. Something that needed to be done to move ahead in my life, if you will, but this was a different kind of being focused. I wasn't just trying to achieve a goal or reach a finish line, I was trying to level up. Like the kind of leveling up that only causes you to want to level up even more and then even more after that. I was on a mission.

Even though, I can look back at 2017 and actually say that my mission was completed, I am still able to look forward and see that there is still more to the mission that has yet to be completed. More knowledge that I have yet to obtain. More growth for myself as a person, and as a driving force in the Indie literary world.

As I sit here, staring at my laptop, lost in thought, I can't help but feel as though 2017 simply had that something special going for it. That something that I can feel within my core that is going to carry over into 2018 and beyond. Whatever it was, or even is, I know that it has caused me to level up in life. To climb that mental ladder of success that I so long go thought I would be too afraid to climb.

There was a time where I thought that I wasn't ready for the world, but it turns out, the world isn't ready for me.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Flow Friday

Welcome to Flow Friday! Poetry lovers, kick back and enjoy the read!

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*It is my pleasure to be able to share with you all a poem written by my talented sister!*
 
  
Wake Up Call By Ashleigh Epps
 
Are you sleep,
Gun shots in the street
Could it be...
Did they hit me?
Click click the gun is empty
Tires screech
Car gets away
Tell me did the bullet stray
Did they take my life away?
Will I live to see another day?
I guess it’s time to pray
God, please hear my plea
Don’t let this blood spill from me
Give me strength to see
I open my eyes and start to cry
It’s not my time to die
God gave me one more day
So now the streets I’ll stay away!
 
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Every Friday, I will showcase one or two other poet's work. If this is something that you are interested in participating in, please click on this link and fill out the form. Poems will be posted in no particular order so be sure to keep an eye out for yours!😉
 

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Authors in the Spotlight 12/28

In our final Author's in the Spotlight, we have authors Joshua Nnadimma Ayozie and Deidre Leshay! 

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Name: Joshua Nnadimma Ayozie

How long have you been published? I started writing June 2014

What's the worst part about being published? The worst part of being published is inadequate encouragements, reading culture of my country people, and cost of publication here in Nigeria.

What's the best part about being published? The best part of being published is an author’s joy for contributing in the cognitive, historical and creative development of the human person.

Are you self-published or did you go through a publishing company? I started with going to the publishing company here in Nigeria, but today, I self-published with the Amazon.

What is the name of y book(s)? My books are 'Hot Rain: Africa, you have rich cultures and Traditions, Priest of Calamity, and In Her Republic

Was it/were they an easy write for you?  Huh! They were not easy to come about because I have to combine my studies in philosophy with my writing skills.

What's the hardest part about writing a book? The hardest part about writing a book is how to begin to write down what one has in mind.

What's the easiest part of writing a book? The easiest part about writing a book could be possible when one has conquered the beginning then the ideas flow.

Where can interested readers purchase their copy of your book(s)? Hot Rain is now available in Amazon, KU, and eBook. In Her Republic will be available on Amazon soon. Priest of Calamity can be shipped

Do you have any future projects in the works? *Is there a tentative release date? Yes, I work to give my readers the best I can offer historical and narratively with the Nigerian politics and the present state of dilapidations in all ramification. I shall release In Her Republic on Amazon in the first few months of 2019.

Do you have any social media sites that you would like to share with my readers? Ya, visit my official website, Facebook, WhatsApp: +2348026466441, Instagram: Joshua Ayozie, official email

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Name: Deidre Leshay

How long have you been published? I have been published for 3 years.

What's the worst part about being published? What's the best part about being published? For me, it is a tie between having too many ideas at one time and marketing my books effectively. 

Are you self-published or did you go through a publishing company? I am a self-published author. I also own a publishing company. 

*What are the highs, if any? I love the freedom I get from being a self-published author.  

*What are the lows, if any? I feel like I have to work seven times harder than authors who have a publisher. 

What is the name of your book(s)?

Every Bit of Crazy 
Quiet Storm 
Collaborations 
Alexis and Wesley 1&2 
Anthologies 
This Type of Love 
Christmas isn't Always Merry 

Was it/were they an easy write for you? Yes, they were pretty easy to write.

What's the hardest part about writing a book? Editing is the hardest part of writing. 

What's the easiest part of writing a book? The easiest part is the storyline.

Where can interested readers purchase their copy of your book(s)? Paperback copies can be purchased directly from me or my website. My eBooks can be purchased on Amazon.

Do you have any future projects in the works? Yes, I have a few in the works.

*Is there a tentative release date? I am hoping to release two in January and two in February. Release date will be posted on my social media, my blog, and my websites. 

Do you have any social media sites that you would like to share with my readers? Yes, readers can find me on Facebook, My Blog, BlackBeauty Presents Website, My Author Website, Instagram, Twitter, My Fan Page, BlackBeauty Presents Fan Page.

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I just want to thank all of the authors that have allowed me to interview them this year. What started out as a whim of an idea soon became something larger than myself and completely amazing! It's been a pleasure to learn so much about so many other authors and I hope that the readers have experienced the same pleasure! Have a safe and Happy New Year!
 

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Authors in the Spotlight 12/26

In today's Authors in the Spotlight, we have authors Nate Johnson and Shatika Turner!

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Name: Nate Johnson

How long have you been published? February 2017

What's the worst part about being published? If that was a bad part of being published, the criticism can be tough to take some days.

What's the best part about being published? I can call myself an author. Seeing a creation coming into fruition is great. It’s as intense process and it’s satisfying to see it finished.

Are you self-published or did you go through a publishing company? Self-published.

*What are the highs, if any? Seeing my books on Amazon is awesome.

*What are the lows, if any? It’s a lot of work. When friends binge Netflix or go out to eat or relax, I’m writing. Sometimes I feel like I miss out on those small moments.

What is the name of your book(s)? Above Average Stories, 91 Books to Change Your Life, 101 Haikus

Was it/were they an easy write for you? These three books come to fruition from my blog. Once I started seeing a pattern in my blog, I would take the related posts and add original content. Editing and revising was and still is the toughest part for me.

What's the hardest part about writing a book? Revising and editing and formatting. Once I have the story complete, I have all of the admin steps to go. It’s a long road to see the book come to the end. Some days it can be tough to write if I don’t feel in the mood.

What's the easiest part about writing a book? The first spark of the idea. I get excited and begin typing like the keyboard is on fire.

Where can interested readers purchase their copy of your book(s)? On my Amazon Author Page.

Do you have any future projects in the works? Yes. I’m working on my first piece of fiction, “Nate and Jake Penguin”.

*Is there a tentative release date? TBD

Do you have any social media sites that you would like to share with my readers? My Website and My YouTube Channel

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Name: Shatika Turner
 
How long have you been published? I have been published since 2012.

What's the worst part about being published? The expectations of others in the industry.

What's the best part about being published? The recognition and the praise I receive.

Are you self-published or did you go through a publishing company? I am self-published, but have been previously signed to two companies.

*What are the highs, if any? The highs of being self-published for me are the ability to have creative control over everything. I set my own release dates, and are not bogged down by deadlines and expectations.

*What are the lows, if any? Unfortunately, when it comes to self-publishing, you have to spend more money out of pocket.

What is the name of your book(s)? The ILL Truth, A Fem’s Playground, The Power of The V, Kasualties

Was it/were they an easy write for you? There were all easy writes for me because I am very passionate about the stories I tell.

What's the hardest part about writing a book? The hardest part about writing a book is finding the time to write, among my other responsibilities.

What's the easiest part about writing a book? The easiest part about writing a book is formulating the idea and starting it.

Where can interested readers purchase their copy of your book(s)? Amazon.

Do you have any future projects in the works? Yes, I am currently writing MistleFlow: Erotic Christmas Shorts, alongside Author Kendra Spencer. I am also going to republish “The Power Of The V 2: Deadly Thirst” really soon. In 2018, there will a nice amount of books released by me.

*Is there a tentative release date? MistleFlow will be released on Christmas Day.

Do you have any social media sites that you would like to share with my readers? You all can follow me on Twitter and Instagram or you can like my Like Page on Facebook.

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Join me on Thursday as I bring you authors Joshua Nnadimma Ayozie and Deidre Leshay!