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Category Archives: Author Interviews

Two Steps Past the Altar by Patricia A. Bridewell

Pharmaceutical sales representative, Sasha Edmonds, is a motivated high-flyer with a stellar track record at Wexel Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Being the top sales rep and having a fiancé who loves her is more than she could ever imagine. But it’s not enough. Her obsession with climbing the corporate ladder is the number one goal that she strives to reach by any means necessary. Until she learns that her mother requires a new medication for her life-threatening medical condition.

When she discovers that her fiancé, Damien Taylor, may be cheating, she breaks off their engagement. In the midst of healing, she becomes captivated with Wesley Dunbar, a wealthy pharmaceutical businessman that may hold the cure for her mom and Sasha’s wounded heart. Although she attempts to resist Wesley’s romantic overtures, his charm, status, and kindness open a window of opportunities to consider. While Damien tries to woo her back into his life, her involvement with Wesley becomes complicated. A surfeit of lies and deception causes a web of mixed emotions as she struggles to help her mom and determine whether Damien or Wesley is the real love of her life.

Excerpt: Two Steps Past the Altar

As Sasha stood in the mirror, admiring how well the dress complimented her figure, she paused. Dad.

She rushed out the room, holding up the bottom of her dress so she wouldn’t trip as she made her way into the living room. Sasha whirled around. “You like my dress?”

“It looks nice,” he said, walking right past her.

Sasha tilted her head. “What’s wrong, Dad?” He frowned and mumbled under his breath before opening the refrigerator. From the expression on his face, something must have happened.

“Hi, hon,” her mother said. “When’d you get in town?”

Sasha turned and saw her mother hugging Damien.

“This morning,” Damien said, peering at Sasha beneath a raised brow as he sat in a corner chair in the living room.

Sasha squinted at him and moved her attention back to her father in the kitchen. Her dad’s behavior made sense now. Damien had told him. Why else would her dad be acting so strange? She glared at Damien, who slightly shrugged his shoulders looking unbothered.

“What’s the occasion for the dress?” Her dad’s tone stung like acid.

“Tamar’s wedding is Sunday,” Sasha explained. “This is my bridesmaid dress.”

“Humph. A Sunday wedding? So, I’m guessing you won’t be at church,” her dad said.

Her shoulders felt heavy from the disappointment in his voice. “No, I won’t be there. Ebony’s leading the Women in Prosperity Ministry until my job slows down. Right now, between me trying to get this promotion, my business trips to Atlanta, and Tamar’s wedding, I’m swamped.”

Her father scrunched his face but didn’t comment.

“We understand, and you’re planning your own wedding. This gown looks nice on you,” her mother said, touching the fabric. “Fits you perfectly. Ebony did an excellent job, and I’m loving the color. Doesn’t it look good on her, Damien?”

With his attention on Sasha, Damien got up and crossed the room, closing the space between them as he examined her in the dress. “Yes, she looks stunning. But she always does.”

Sasha forced her pouty lips to smile. “Thank you,” she said, taking a moment to observe his well-sculpted physique. Even in his camouflage cargo pants and black t-shirt, he could turn a few heads any day. But she refused to allow his striking appearance or cotton candy sweet talk to woo her. The fact remained; he had disrespected her, and their wedding was off. If he couldn’t be faithful to her for 365 days, how in the world could he commit to a lifetime?

He stretched out his arms for an embrace, and her skin bristled. Just the thought of his touch made her cringe. At the same time, she knew if she avoided his hug, it would raise questions from her parents that she didn’t feel like discussing. She’d just have to play this one out.

Her back stiff, she allowed him to wrap his arms around her briefly and then stepped back. “I…uh, I didn’t know you were coming down today. You usually call first.”

( Continues…  )

 

Purchase Two Steps Past the Altar by Patricia A. Bridewell
Fiction » Christian » Romance
https://www.amazon.com/Steps-Past-Altar-Patricia-Bridewell-ebook/dp/B07DCC5XFT/

 


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My Last Baggage Call Aboard Air Force One by Glenn W. Powell

My Last Baggage Call Aboard Air Force One: A Journey of Sacrifice, Service, Family, and Friendship by Glenn W. Powell

Sergeant Glenn W. Powell’s MY LAST BAGGAGE CALL is the story of a most unlikely young man who leaves his working-class environment of Toledo, Ohio, to become a soldier. Seeking excitement and a way to “make something of himself,” Glenn Powell’s journey exceeds his wildest dreams—a journey that began in basic training in Fort Hood, Texas ends at 1600 Pennsylvania avenue—the most important address in the world.

MY LAST BAGGAGE CALL is about so much more than Glenn Powell’s military journey, but about poignant memories of family, friendships, sacrifices, and love—central to his story is Ronda Holloway, the beautiful young woman he falls in love with in Manheim, Germany, and, who joins him on his life journey as wife, soulmate and mother to their two sons.

MY LAST BAGGAGE CALL offers readers a glimpse into Sergeant Glenn Powell’s 30-year transformation from the much-beloved boy who seeks more in life…to the man, who discovers it—in adventure, in friendships, and in service to three American presidents. a service he delivered with pride, unquestioned loyalty, distinction and in the end, great admiration.

Purchase My Last Baggage Call Aboard Air Force One: A Journey of Sacrifice, Service, Family, and Friendship by Glenn W. Powell
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Last-Baggage-Call-Aboard-Force/dp/1986878406/
Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/LAST-BAGGAGE-CALL-ABOARD-FORCE-ebook/dp/B078KQ9Z89
B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/my-last-baggage-call-aboard-air-force-one-glenn-w-powell/1128407880

 

 

 


 

Black Pearls Magazine Conversation with Sergeant First Class (SFC) Glenn W. Powell 

 

Sergeant First Class Glenn W. Powell (Retired), is a native of Toledo, Ohio. He enlisted into the United States Army in 1982, and retired in 2002. During his military career, he served as a heavy vehicle driver, a squad leader, and non-commissioned officer.

In September, 1991, SFC Powell joined the George HW Bush White House as a chauffeur, and in 1992, was promoted to transportation coordinator for the white house Press Corps, serving in the Clinton Administration. In December 1995, he assumed the duties of transportation supervisor for Air Force One. In January, 2001, during his service under President George W. Bush, SFC Powell was transferred to the White House Military Office, Customer Support and Organizational Development where he served as deputy director.

SFC Powell retired with distinction from the Military in 2014. He received numerous awards and decorations throughout his service, including the Meritorious Service Medal, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, and the United States Army Achievement Medal with four oak leaf clusters. He received U.S. Service Ribbons for both domestic and overseas service. Glenn and Ronda Holloway Powell have been married for 25 years, and have three sons, Darius, Warren, and Glenn, II. They reside in Virginia.

BPM: How does a man go from basic training in Fort Dix, New Jersey to a prestigious career at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue as a Deputy Director in the White House Military Office?
ANSWER: The journey wasn’t easy but it all boiled down to hard work, dedication, and individuals seeing your potential for success.

BPM: Entering the military at an early age can be challenging for some young people. What was your experience like and looking back would you do this all over again?
ANSWER: At first that experience was very hard. It was my first time being away from home and being in an environment that I couldn’t control. It forced me to grow up quickly and provided the additional resources and discipline that I needed to become a man. Without question, I would do it all over again.

BPM: Tell us about your new book, MY LAST BAGGAGE CALL ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE: A Journey of Sacrifice, Service, Family, and Friendship.
ANSWER: The book is about my personal journey from being a teenage father in Toledo, OH. Making the hard decision to leave my son in order to provide for him. Serving my country that I hold in high regards. Finding love and building a family. Constantly leaving my family to fulfill my military obligations while serving the Office of the President, and establishing lifelong friendships.

BPM: What was it like to be in service to three American presidents?
ANSWER: It was one of the greatest honors that an individual in the military can aspire to have. It isn’t the norm for a military person to be able to serve three Presidents, due to the fact that we relocate after four years on that assignment.

BPM: Being aboard Air Force One had to be amazing! What is one of the most beautiful places you visited?
ANSWER: The first place was South Africa, where I was afforded the opportunity to go on safari, but more importantly to tour Robin Island during President Clinton’s visit, and have the pleasure of meeting Nelson Mandela. The other place was China, and being able to walk the Great Wall of China, and standing in Tiananmen Square.

BPM: What was your most interesting chapter to write in your book MY LAST BAGGAGE CALL?
ANSWER: For me, the most interesting chapter to write was Chapter 15, Second Chances. Writing this chapter allowed me to be vulnerable with how I felt during 911 and multiple health issues that I had faced.

BPM: Were there ever times you wished you could share your story with the world before writing the book?
ANSWER: Yes, there were, but because I’m such a private person and I wasn’t sure if I wanted to share my story.

BPM: What made you want to become a writer? How long have you been writing?
ANSWER: I have been writing my story my whole life. Keeping notes in my head internally. I just never knew that I was a writer. It wasn’t until my cancer diagnosis, that I decided it was time to put the thoughts and feelings to paper.

BPM: How has writing MY LAST BAGGAGE CALL impacted your life?
ANSWER: It has allowed me to be more open with regards to my personal life. It has allowed me to share the upbringing that has made me what I am today.

BPM: What advice or bit of wisdom would you share with the young man leaving home for the first time seeking adventure?
ANSWER: I would say, try not to be afraid but open for opportunities that came your way. Your destiny has been pre-determined, so follow your heart.

BPM: Do you view writing as a kind of spiritual practice?
ANSWER: I would view writing as an outlet, as everyone has many views on spiritual practice and I don’t want to offend anyone with my views.

BPM: What was one of the most surprising things you learned from this project?
ANSWER: The one thing that was most surprising, was finding out my family history. Everyone isn’t always able to trace their family origins.

BPM: Share one specific point in your past that is resonating with your present situation or journey.
ANSWER: To always treat others the way that you want to be treated.

BPM: Does writing energize or exhaust you?
ANSWER: It is both energizing and exhausting. It energizes me by allowing my creative juices to flow. It is exhausting because you really don’t know just how much work goes into bringing a project to life.

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Maxine’s New Job by Dr. Lynda J. Mubarak

 

Maxine Hill is an inquisitive fourth grade student who loves to read, work crossword puzzles, visit her best friend, Amanda Grayson, and play with her cat, Amos. Maxine is also on a quest to find out why her neighbor, Mrs. Sullivan, is acting so weird. Mrs. Sullivan is always outside sitting on the front porch with her two rescue dogs or working in her flower bed. However, she seems to get very nervous when Maxine talks to her about everything. What is going on with this lady? Is she a robot spy? Is she an alien? Is she working for the CIA?

Follow Maxine Hill as she solves the case of the strange neighbor!

 

 

STATIONS FOR KIDS INTRODUCTION

STATIONS FOR KIDS is dedicated to early literacy and community service. The best way to ensure your child’s personal and career success is to begin the learning process as soon as possible. Academic success is always necessary, but your child also needs to see how he or she fits into the world community. A combination of community service and applicable educational concepts will give your child a balanced view of the world.

All STATIONS FOR KIDS books are available at Barnes and Noble and Amazon in ebook format, hardcover and paperbacks.

 

AMAZON
https://www.amazon.com/Maxines-New-Job-Lynda-Jones-Mubarak-ebook/dp/B07CQPB1JT/

BARNES & NOBLE
https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/maxines-new-job-lynda-jones-mubarak/1128565433

 

 

EXCERPT: Maxine’s New Job by Lynda Jones-Mubarak

It was a warm, bright Sunday morning and a special time for the Hills. Once a month on Sundays, the Hill Family spent four hours at the Helping Hands Food Pantry. Max had asked her parents several important questions after watching a homeless family standing on a corner last year. That’s when Mr. and Mrs. Hill decided that Max needed to learn how community agencies serve people in need. The Hills contacted the pantry and made arrangements for the family to volunteer one day per month.

Maxine enjoyed the community service hours. Her job was filling each family meal box with a can of green beans and cereal. Mr. and Mrs. Hill worked in the pantry kitchen. “Max, when a person needs help, you do what you can for them with what you have or what you know. Never forget that,” said Mrs. Hill. “OK mom, I won’t forget,” said Maxine.

The Hills completed their four volunteer hours and shook hands with the families before leaving. Max thought, Wow, it feels great to help someone who is having a difficult time. Mom says we should continue to do this once each month and I think she’s right! The Hills stopped at an ice cream shop for a treat and returned home so that Max could prepare for the first day of school.

The first day at B. H. Obama Elementary School was awesome! Maxine listened as the new principal welcomed the students and the parents. She was happy to see her classmates from the past year and she saw some new faces. The lunchroom had been repainted and it looked completely different. Maxine also discovered that she would be in the new wing of the school because the student enrollment had increased. Wow, everything was new in this area from the desks to the lockers! And to make it even better, she didn’t have to share a locker this year.

At the end of the day, she had shared some summer memories and made new friends. Maxine also had several school papers to take home. One of the papers was a flier about open house in a few days. When the evening school bus stopped on the corner, Maxine and four neighborhood kids hopped off and began walking home. As Maxine walked, she smiled, looked down at her new sneakers, and thought about all the new changes at school. She was trying to decide whether she wanted to join the chess, robotics or Scrabble club. When she looked up, she was facing her house and Mrs. Sullivan was watering the flowers in her little red well next door. Hmm, the Sullivans may want to come to my school’s open house, so I’ll give the flier to Mrs. Sullivan, thought Maxine.

She ran over to Mrs. Sullivan, handed her the flier and began discussing the first day of school. Maxine talked very hurriedly about the first day of school and said good-bye quickly. She knew it was time to get home and take Amos outside. Mrs. Sullivan listened and nodded, but had a concerned look on her face as Maxine walked away.

Maxine thought about asking Mrs. Sullivan if she was feeling alright, but she thought about what her mom said last week, “Max, please try to be courteous. You ask so many questions. Maybe you should be a detective!” She thought for a minute, walked back into the house, ran up the stairs and called Amos. It was time for his afternoon walk and his favorite doggie treat. I’ll talk with Mrs. Sullivan later thought Maxine.

Amos ran out of the bedroom, rubbed his head against Maxine’s leg and ran downstairs to the front door. He was ready to take the afternoon walk around the block. After walking with Amos and waving at the neighbors, Maxine and Amos slowly walked back to the house. Mrs. Hill was busy preparing dinner. Today was Monday, so it was going to be chicken tacos, Maxine’s favorite. Maxine looked at the Sullivan house from the kitchen window and inquired, “Mom, have you ever noticed anything strange about Mrs. Sullivan?” Read the rest of this entry »

 

Falling Through the Ceiling: Our ADHD Family Memoir  by Audrey and Larry Jones, MD


Falling Through the Ceiling: Our ADHD Family Memoir  by Audrey and Larry Jones, MD

https://www.amazon.com/Falling-Through-Ceiling-Family-Memoir/dp/0692099883

 

The memoir of Audrey and Larry Jones and their three sons demystifies ADHD in childhood and beyond. 

A blend of love, humor and real-life irony, Falling Through the Ceiling makes sense of the nonsensical, shedding light on the challenges of living with attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD). These stories offer the real-deal reality of living with a house full of ADHD, including the ups, downs and chaos of what happened and the consequences of such. The authors, a married couple of 45 years, offer experience, practical insight and what they learned from counselors, research and their own mistakes to assist people coping with children and adults who are affected by ADHD.

Sharing their personal life challenges with the effects of ADHD, this is a real, sometimes painful, story written to help families recognize and navigate to controlling chaos and unlocking the gifts of ADHD in their children and themselves.

“We were struggling to make it and created codependency and unhealthy enabling habits. What we did, and what we didn’t do, to help our sons  didn’t work, many times. The behaviors simply continued and morphed. If we had it to do all over again, we would have done things better and differently. We feel that other parents, by walking with us through our journey, will gain strength and courage to move from frustration to stabilizing behaviors and living resiliently.”
Audrey and Larry Jones, authors, Falling Through the Ceiling

 

Purchase Falling Through the Ceiling: Our ADHD Family Memoir by Audrey and Larry Jones, MD
https://www.amazon.com/Falling-Through-Ceiling-Family-Memoir/dp/0692099883/

Paperback: 200 pages
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0692099883
ISBN-13: 978-0692099889
Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches

 

 

About Audrey R. Jones & Larry A. Jones, MD

Married over 46 years, Audrey and Larry Jones are parents, grandparents, and fun-loving mates who enjoy each other’s company, civic, volunteer and cultural activities and frequent traveling. They had a whirlwind spring romance in 1970 as college students, married in late summer of 1972, and in four years had three sons, one right after the other.

As expensive, dangerous behaviors continued to be repeated, they sought help from teachers and therapists regarding their children. During his adolescence, each child was diagnosed with ADHD, just as hyperactive disorder was becoming a recognized clinical condition. For at least 20 years of his career as a pediatrician Larry did not link his children’s symptoms and signs of ADHD to himself.

In 2008, Audrey was stricken with an illness, which took its toll on her health and led to a permanent disability. Her gift of recovery included an opportunity for Larry and Audrey to seriously reflect on their sons’ actions, starts and misfires as young adults pursuing college educations and meaningful employment as they all lived with the challenges of ADHD. Rather than just writing about the road to recovery, Audrey and Larry chose to tell their whole story, with the intent of helping other families acknowledge and address behaviors that can adversely affect couples and families.

Message from the Authors
For us Falling Through the Ceiling is a blend of love, humor and real-life irony. We make sense of the nonsensical by shedding light on our challenges of living with attention deficit disorder (ADHD).

Our stories are examples of the things that can happen when ADHD runs rampant and untreated for parent and three sons. That is what defines the universality of our stories. We fell into the same trap as many other parents, thinking that Drew, Jay, and Rob were just lazy and willfully not completing assignments in school. Parenting is probably the most humbling experience of your life. Few of us are trained in parenting and we encounter events in our children’s lives, which should lead us to professional counselors and therapists. Our darling children can throw us off kilter because they really do the darndest things.

We were struggling to make it and created codependency and unhealthy enabling habits. What we did, and what we didn’t do, to help our sons didn’t work, many times. The behaviors simply continued and morphed. If we had it to do all over again, we would have done things better and differently. Hopefully our stories will give other parents relief, support, courage and solutions.

Connect with the Authors Online
Website: http://enabletables.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/fallingttc
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/fallingthroughtheceiling
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Fallingthroughtheceiling

 


 

Black Pearls Magazine Intimate Conversation with Audrey and Larry Jones, MD

Audrey Robinson Jones left Kansas to attend Wellesley College, graduating in 1972 with her degree in anthropology/sociology, planning to be a social worker. Instead, she worked in healthcare administration for almost 30 years with her husband, including running his multi-office pediatric practice for 24 years. She also earned master’s degrees in healthcare administration and business.

She became managing partner of an airport concessions company and purchased two business franchises with her sons. At the same time, she and her husband built a loving home with three sons. As life unfolded, her sons and husband were diagnosed with ADHD. Managing businesses and four ADHD males took its toll on her health.

In 2008, Audrey was stricken with an almost fatal autoimmune disease. Recovering and retired, Audrey remains a vital force, including participating with Larry in several international health missions trips. At home, she continues to lead a local food pantry, something she’s done for over fifteen years, in addition to family advocacy activities.

 

Larry Albert Jones, MD, grew up in the 1950s with an overprotective mother and grandmother in a poor section of Memphis, Tenn. His childhood was greatly impacted by the village of educators and church folks who recognized his intellect. That village launched Larry to Wesleyan University, Johns Hopkins University and The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. Unfortunately, he lost his mother to cancer before his 20th birthday, but his path was set. He began to notice how much time he required to maintain his college GPA as he prepared for medical school. Keeping his eye on the prize, he persevered, never considering that he would later be diagnosed with ADHD.

For at least 20 years of his career as a pediatrician and parent, he did not link his children’s symptoms and signs of ADHD to himself. While being an effective and popular clinician, he lived in denial about his own diagnosis.

Larry is currently a departmental medical director for the SSM Healthcare System. With treatment and counseling, Larry is pursuing community projects, including facilitating a STEM program with elementary school students in Ferguson, MO.

 

BPM: As doctors and parents, how has that influenced your writing?
AUDREY: We had difficulty understanding my husband, the doctor’s, behaviors and the learning and attention struggles that he had in medical school, residency, and working in his own practice. He was still in denial even after our sons were diagnosed with various types of ADHD. But Larry did not receive a final diagnosis and begin treatment until my psychologist recommended testing.

We started thinking seriously about how our stories would help other parents and affected adults understand what ADHD looked like and the path to unlocking their talents and gifts. I wanted to share this story because both Larry and I thought we could help parents like the ones in his practice who were silently suffering from the effects of ADHD in their families.

LARRY: The clash of parent vs. physician is a major struggle that other professionals will have as parents as well. In work situations you have control, over your life, but as a parent you have much less control and you are faced with situations that are challenging and filled with emotion and doubt about whether you are doing the right thing. My objective was to write as a parent while using my clinical background to provide depth and understanding.

 

BPM: Tell us about your new book. What do you hope readers take away from it?
LARRY: We want parents to understand that they are not alone and that there is help available, and how to find that appropriate help.

AUDREY: We want our readers to: Recognize defiant, daring behavior leading to failures, including sexual acting out, running away from home and inviting danger.  Find the resources necessary to support your children in growing through ADHD to unlock their exceptional personal gifts. Get out of the way of progress to do everything to make your family whole and healthy, even admitting when you’re wrong. Nurture their children to become independent adults with clear and realistic goals, along with the solid approaches to achieving them.

 

BPM: Give us insight into your primary message.
AUDREY & LARRY: Falling Through the Ceiling: Our ADHD Family Memoir is a book about the challenges encountered by both parents and children as they cope with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). We provide our accounts in a parent-to-parent view of the obstacles in raising children with ADHD.
We want to inspire parents and adults living with ADHD symptoms to stabilize frustrating behaviors which allows the gifts of the ADHD brain to emerge and flourish.

 

BPM: How do you find or make time to write?
AUDREY: We worked with a writing coach and editor because of my impairment from my illness. It has truly taken a village to bring the project together.

LARRY: Working full-time, I could only write evenings and weekends. Many of the stories required lengthy discussions to recall all of the details of the events. Audrey and I had the discussions during walks and driving trips.

 

BPM: How much research went into sculpting this story?
AUDREY: Since our sons were diagnosed, I have sought answers from educators, therapists, other mental health professionals, and all types of counselors. I tried to read books that I really didn’t understand. I began reading articles online during my recovery because of our grandchildren.

LARRY: I was able to draw on my experiences treating families with gifted ADHD children.

 

BPM: What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write?
AUDREY: My favorite chapters to write was “Falling Through the Ceiling” because for the first time our son shared his personal recollection of trials controlling his behavior. I told the story as an example of why parents needed to see God’s grace in parenting. When he literally fell through the ceiling from the attic to our home office, he just called it a painful lesson that changed his perception of the consequences of his behavior.
LARRY: My favorite chapter is the “Samurai Swordsmen”. It was through this trauma that we discovered the strength of the bond between our two youngest sons. The two were always squabbling about something and never seemed to be friends. Rob protected Jay from getting into trouble for cutting him. Then after the surgery Jay made himself available to help Rob in any way that he could to express his love for his brother.

Read the rest of this entry »

 

Miami Beat: The Secret Society by Frederica Burden

Welcome to Miami! When the sun-kissed beaches and clear blue skies fade into the darkness things really heat up. Miami nights give way to tantalizing temptations that can excite and coerce the darkness out of even the best of us. Sidney Stevens is learning this the hard way. A young, vibrant woman, Sidney is on a mission to pursue her dreams. Unbeknownst to everyone else, Sidney also has a goal that she will stop at nothing to see through.

Losing her father to police brutality at a very young age became the catalyst in Sidney’s life, setting her family on a spiral that she desperately tries to end.

Once an Explorer in the police department, she learned a great deal about law enforcement, which she intends to use to bring her father’s killers to justice. The only thing standing in her way is her heart. There are two love interests in Sidney’s life and she’s forced to choose.

Two is company…
Major Marcus Mystic is her former boss and her current love interest. Since the day she met him, she has been fixated on the handsome, intelligent, virile man. A complex man with an even more complicated home life, Mystic has secrets that could get them both killed. Will Sidney be the one to save him or will their love lead to destruction?

Three is a crowd…
Officer Arturo Garcia is her former coworker and mentor. A sexy police officer with a rough edge and muscular body, Garcia has had Sidney’s attention for years. There’s no denying the red-hot attraction between the two. There’s also no denying the secrets that threaten to explode in a fiery storm engulfing them all in flames. Everyone won’t make it out alive.

 

 


EXCERPT: Miami Beat: The Secret Society

Prologue

 

The sound of glass breaking woke Sidney Stevens from a deep slumber. Frightened, she climbed out of bed and put her feet in her slippers. She could hear voices. Familiar voices, but the tone was completely off.

Terrified, she crept out of bed to investigate the noises. She slowly walked out to the living room and watched in horror as her world shattered right in front of her.

Her father’s right hand was gripped tightly around her mother’s throat. Sidney screamed in horror as she watched her father holding her mother in the air, by her throat. Next to them, lay two empty bottles of Johnnie Walker Black Label, her father’s favorite whiskey.

Clawing at his arms, her mother tried desperately to break free from his stranglehold. “Stop it!” Sidney screamed at the top of her lungs, praying that her father would let go. Her mother’s beautiful butter pecan complexion was now beet red. It seemed as if her mother, Florence Stevens, was going to die right before her eyes. Sidney didn’t know what to do, but she knew that if she didn’t act fast, her mother would be dead. Luckily, she didn’t have to contemplate her next move for long.

Sidney heard a sudden bang on the door and jumped as five police officers stormed their home. One cop lifted her up in his arms so quickly it felt like she was flying. He sat her in the kitchen as the other cops questioned her father, Randy Stevens, Sr.

Sidney tried to peer around the corner to see what was happening with her parents, but the cop who picked her up began talking to her. “What is your name? How old are you? Tell me what happened,” he asked as she tried to make sense of it all.

Things flew across the room, shattering, as she heard raised voices. Sidney listened to her mother begging for her father’s release. “Let him go!” Florence cried as a wrestling match ensued in the other room. Read the rest of this entry »

 

The Legend of Diddley Squatt: A Novella from a Brother Fella by Duane Lance Filer

The Legend of Diddley Squatt: A Novella from a Brother Fella by Duane Lance Filer

Sometime during the middle of the twentieth century, a black child is born in Rundown City, Mississippi, to rundown parents. After Diddley Squatt’s sixteen-year-old mother splits the scene and leaves him in the care of his grandmother, Momma Squatt, Diddley settles into a new life within her three-story hotel/brothel, the Copp-A-Squatt Inn.

As he grows older and is nicknamed Young Didd, the boy is unfortunately bullied because of his unusual name and life circumstances. Luckily Diddley develops a thick skin and learns that love is better than hate, thanks to the nurturing, lessons, and mentoring provided by his grandmother and the strong ladies who, along with a goo-gaggle of Inn customers that include famous musicians, soldiers on leave, and politicians, visit the brothel.

While on his unique coming-of-age journey, Diddley also uncovers the mystical powers behind a magical harmonica that allow him to bond with creatures he never imagined could become his best friends, and who could somehow lead him to a new destiny.

In this urban novella, a black boy growing up in the south must somehow learn to find his way in life after his mother abandons him, with help from well-meaning people.

 

Listen to a reading from The Legend of Diddley Squatt – http://www.audioacrobat.com/note/C758D31k

 

5-Star Book Review Written by Ernest Hamilton
A story of overcoming life’s oddities and the ability to persevere by finding the best that humankind has to offer. I Loved this funky tale of bullying and hope. It took me back to the days of the chitlin circuit when blacks could only stay in certain areas, YET THEY HAD A BALL! I love the various characters and how they each had a hand in making sure Diddley made it through his initial life years. This story needs to be made into a movie!!!

 

Excerpt: The Legend of Diddley Squatt by Duane Lance Filer

Didd was on the back porch of the Copp-A-Squatt; just sitting on the porch looking out into the back woods with his trusty harmonica in his mouth – playing this old blues tune known as “Squirrel Meat Stew” he had picked up. These old houses really never had any back fences, and backyards just ran out into the woods. This was good, because deer, possums, raccoons, and rats – all these different animals would run up to the end where the brown grass part ended – and you could bond with the animals.

Didd loved to just sit on the porch and watch and feed the animals. When nobody was looking, he would rumble through the trash bin where Oscar (one of Momma’s house men others called a “pimp”) and the other help would throw the garbage after eating. He’d dig through the trash and get the leftovers – squish them in a paper bag and place it out on the edge of the backyard/woods area. He’d sit there and watch the animals come eat. They loved the food. Then, one day, something really strange happened!

Didd was putting some of the leftovers out on the rickety back fence for the animals. He put out some pork-chop bones, some un-eaten grits, some egg remnants, burnt toast – all just laid it across the fence, when this possum came up and acted like he wasn’t scared at all.

Then to Didd’s amazement the possum started talking: “Thanks young Diddley. All the animals have been watching you from afar and we appreciate all the food you bring out here to us. It all tastes good and keep it coming.”

“Possum’s can’t talk?” Didd said.

“Why not? Why can’t we?” said the possum, “you humans just think we can’t talk because you can imagine the trouble we would be in if humans knew we could talk. We just choose not to talk. But to some few humans that we feel comfortable with, we will talk. Diddley Squatt, you are one of the few humans we feel comfortable talking around. My friends will talk to you, you’ll see.”

“Wow” said young Diddley. “I love all animals. I mean I really like animals more than people. Animals always let you know how they feel.”

“You’re welcome” said the possum. “My name is Percy Possum– and I’ve been hanging back here in Momma Squatt’s backyard for years. Lots of action at this whorehouse, so there is always a lot of extra discarded food in the garbage. I hope we can be friends.” Percy extends his free hand while holding onto his food with the other.

Young Diddley had seen this before from the johns, the shaking of hands, and knew he must respond. So, he shifted over to the back of the fence and shook Percy’s free hand. The bond was set!

Before he left, Percy said, “You don’t happen to have any fresh food on you young Didd- do you?”

“I have my lunch, a tomato sandwich. Sorry, but I don’t eat meat. I could never eat something that once breathed like me. One of the johns said that makes me a “VE-GEE-TARIAN. You are more than welcome to my sandwich,” said Didd as he pushed the sandwich into Percy’s paws.

Percy switched his tail in happiness. “Thanks, I can share this fresh tomato sandwich with the rest of the animals. We possums eat anything – we even have a few ‘vegetarians’ that I’m aware. I knew you were special; and keep playing that harmonica. We animals sense something magical when we hear you playing. See you later young Diddley,” said Percy.

“I’m sure we will be talking more in the future. Like I said, you are one of the exceptional ones.” Percy slowly crept back into the woods; his teeth holding the bag of discarded food and the tomato sandwich bag in his hands.

“Wow!’ was all Diddley could say.

( Continued… )

© 2017 All rights reserved. Book excerpt reprinted by permission of the author, Duane Lance Filer. Do not reproduce, copy or use without the author’s written permission. This excerpt is used for promotional purposes only.

Purchase The Legend of Diddley Squatt: A Novella from a Brother Fella
Science Fiction & Fantasy > Magical Realism > Paranormal & Urban Life
https://www.amazon.com/Legend-Diddley-Squatt-Novella-Brother/dp/1532033842

 

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BPM Interview with Author/Poet ME

ME was raised in the dirty South: the inner-city neighborhood of Liberty City in Miami, Florida. He considers himself a classic old-school gangsta, a hustler, and a scholar. He is also a Vietnam-era veteran.

ME wrote and illustrated a comic strip book in the seventh grade, and in college, he penned articles for the newspaper of the University of the District of Columbia. But it was not until he spent time in a maximum-security federal prison that he had the time to focus on polishing his writing skills. Like a diamond formed in the wall of a volcano due to prolonged, intense heat, he gradually transformed into a poetic prophet of truth and love—a poetic Picasso from the hood.

OPEN YOURSELF TO SOMETHING UNIQUE!

ME is the pen name of the author. ME represents the Mirrored Mankind of existing as human beings. The author identifies himself, to the reader as ME, a paradox to those who ask about the author’s identity. So, ME is a shrewd alter ego of you woman. A reflection of the imperfections ME be’s in you, you be’s in…who ME, Yeah you. ME places the reader in his space, his fate, his yai eye. He writes for all who doesn’t exist as ME. Who can only be but a mystical reflection of humanity’s Spirit Jewel. ME.

BPM: Tell us about your new book. What topics are discussed?
My book, FOR YOU WOMAN: Spirit Jewels introduces an innovative, creative writing style of Poetic Intellectual Art. It incorporates a mix of profound insight and spiritual wonders of Love, Life and Relationships.

FOR YOU WOMAN: Spirit Jewels has a central subject matter of Love is forging upon the FOUR ways we experience Life: Mind, Spirit, Body and Soul. Spirit Jewels manifest as creative masterpieces of poetry, prose, short stories, and plenty of game! And yes, it will be available on Amazon Kindle in May, 2018.

 

BPM: What was your hardest section to write, the opening or closing?
Neither. It was in the middle. The short parable story: “Sleeping Beauty (Based on a True Story).” ME was challenged on how he could effectively reach and awaken our ‘Baby Girl‘ Spirit Jewels of society. Sweethearts, lost in a deep sleep… within the dark side of Love and Life. Caught up in a asshole’s destiny… of dumb shitz. What’s the answer? How can Sleeping Beauty be awakened?

 

BPM: Do you try to deliver to readers what they want or let the subject matter guide your writing?
Both, ME writes to deliver to readers what they Need and Want. Readers want to ‘Connect’ with material they can relate to. The deeper the better. The subject matter does this and much more. It’s Got Game! A raw creative edge steeped in truth. Just what Readers need.

 

BPM: Is there one subject you would never write about as an author?
No, there is no subject ME wouldn’t write about because everything under the sun has a story. ME knows that the truth speaks for itself. As a writer, he simply shines a spotlight on IT.

 

BPM: Is there a certain type of scenario that’s harder for you to write than others?
Oh no. As a Spiritual Gangsta who is a writer, the rawness of his ‘connection’ to whatever it is…ME expresses in its purity. It’s all game.

 

BPM: What made you want to become a writer? How long have you been writing?
It was destiny. ME was born as a writer. Bred to be a writer. Compelled and driven by humanity’s malignant genocidal ignorance of the truth… to write. Any way, ME began writing in Jr. High with a comic strip book. And with some newspaper articles here and there. ME embarked on a destiny of writing when he was incarcerated in 1980, bank robbery. “Spirit Jewels” is now those crushed fermented wines laid before you.

 

BPM: How has writing impacted your life?
One: The sheer joy and challenge in such Creative Force of Impulse.
Two: The sheer POWER from ME “Ability” to connect humanity’s mind, spirit, body, and soul.

 

BPM: Do you view writing as a kind of spiritual practice?
Uhmm. When your book is entitled FOR YOU WOMAN: Spirit Jewels, such writings must personify a Spiritual Reality. So, when you’re a Spiritual Gangsta, writing is a Spirit Jeweled Reality.

 

BPM: What was the most surprising things you learned from this project?
On the business side, I saw how cynical people are. On the personal side, how cynical people are in NOT telling ME how they really feel about ‘Our Book.’ They simply refuse to reveal their true feelings about how deep it is to them…Soul personal.

 

BPM: Share one specific point in your book that resonates with your journey.
CROWN JEWEL: *Oprah*In the book of Spirit Jewels, the summit of our “Inner (Soul) Chapter” on Love there is ‘ME’ Crown Jewel, Oprah. Baby Girl embodies ME celestial alter ego, his Aquarian Sista in this Age of Aquarius. She IS the Crown Jewel of ME super egoed journey.

 

BPM: Is there a specific place/space/state of mind that you find inspirational?
Yes, the ‘Geometric Grid‘ of knowledge with mind, squared with the raw body of what matters and unparalleled feelings soul deep… that it generates a Spirit Fire of empowering inspirational insights and visionary wisdom.

 

BPM: Does writing energize or you?
Based on the geometric principles ME outlined on his inspirational states above, it’s logical to conclude that writing energizes and empowers ME. There is no other way it could be.

 

BPM: What are the top three things that make you feel happy and fulfilled?
1. The Power and Majik of God and feeling aware and connected with such Godness… Mind, Spirit, Body, and Soul. There is no greater ‘High.’
2. The Power and Majik of Love. Since God is Love, such empowerment of Oneness, connecting and joining with Life and what matters is majikal.
3. You Woman. Your essence and presence is a divine gateway to our immortality, our destiny… to our rawest ecstasy. ME greatest inspirations.

 

BPM: What make you forget about the world around you?
Only God and the Universe’s cosmic wonders can make ME forget the world around ME. ME get ‘Hope-Fully’ pro/found in such GRAND-NESS.

 

BPM: What strengths did you use to achieve two major goals in Life?
1. The positive development and application of positive energy forces.
2. Focus of Vision.
3. Perseverance.
These strengths helped ME achieve: The goal of being a writer and completing our book – FOR YOU WOMAN: Spirit Jewels. And the goal of being a ‘consummate’ businessman, first and foremost, as an independent self publisher.

 

BPM: What other projects are you working on at the present?
Re-Drafting the outline for my next book, ‘For Everything, There’s A Time.’ A novel that has a mix of everything in it. Action, adventure, mystery, fantasy, science, spiritual and historical romance… as it transcends time.

Re-Structuring a scientific thesis ME wrote on METAPHYSICS. The alter ego to his Spirit Jeweled work of art. Metaphysics is the highest science of all. What can be greater than knowing the ‘Nature of Reality and Existence.” Such knowledge must be based on the Logical Propositions of Absolute Reality…you know as God.

 

BPM: How can readers discover more about you and your work?
The author, ME, is based on his website/blog: spiritjewelsinc.com. Created designed for the customers to explore his book, life and works. And as a ‘Gateway’ connection to the Best of You thru ME!

ME’s Website: spiritjewelsinc.com
FB Profile: goo.gl/r1YkYx
FB Page: goo.gl/LMtEtb
Twitter: twitter.com/spiritjeweler
FB: https://www.facebook.com/For-You-Woman-Spirit-Jewels-322681971234925/

 
 
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