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The Mysteries of Eva Miller Revealed
by Eva D. Miller
Former American Idol contestant Eva Miller takes you on an inspiring journey of both tragedy and triumph. Through her courage and faith Eva set out on a mission to unravel the mysteries that shrouded her life, she never knew what could possibly await her. Join her as she shares her story of abandonment, abuse, and deception as the mysteries of Eva Miller are revealed.
About the Author Eva Miller was born in Los Angeles, California. She spent most of her childhood between North Carolina and Ohio. As she approached her teenage years, the Universe sparked a change within Eva and due to certain events in her life, she decided it was time to leave Ohio for the sunny state of Florida. Upon arriving in Florida, she began to thrive. It was here that she completed high school and went on to attend Florida A&M University.
After a few years, she felt it was time again to move to a new location to begin to gather the lost chords of her life. The location for the beginning of that journey would be Atlanta, Georgia and in 2004 she arrived to seek out many potential opportunities. She has been a contestant on American Idol, tried out for various roles in reality television, and has been used an extra in various productions around the city. Those experiences sparked her interest in film making and perhaps even bringing a production of her own life to the big screen. Before then though, the world needed to know her story and who she is. From there, she became an author in 2010, releasing some of her life's memoirs in her book "The Mysteries of Eva Miller Revealed."
Eva is now a mother of a beautiful daughter, a fiancé to her mate of ten years, and works to aid in various humanitarian efforts around the entire globe. She has been especially recognized for her vigorous work with adoption rights, women's empowerment, and bringing awareness to multiple causes around the continent of Africa.
Jaden Toussaint, the Greatest Episode 1
The Quest for Screen Time by Marti Dumas
Giant Afro. Even Bigger Brain.
Jaden Toussaint is a five year-old who knows it all. I mean, really knows it all. Animal Scientist. Great Debater. Master of the art of ninja dancing. There’s nothing Jaden Toussaint can’t do. The only problem is that grown-ups keep trying to convince him that, even though he’s really smart, he doesn't know EVERYTHING. The thing is…he kind of does. This time our hero must use all his super-powered brain power to convince the grown-ups that he needs more screen time.
The Jaden Toussaint, the Greatest series is targeted at children ages 6-8 or whenever they first start getting into chapter books. It's a good first long book because it has lots of illustrations to help kids who can read but don't have a lot of stamina yet get a chance to rest their eyes without having to put the book down and quit.
Sign Up for Free Copy of Jaden Toussaint, the Greatest Episode 1 Chapter books for #Children ages 6-10. #Fantasy #Adventure http://www.martidumasbooks.com/#!books/c96d
About the Author Marti Dumas is a mother, teacher, and author from New Orleans. She is a contributing writer on education and parenting for Think504.com and other publications. An expert in childhood literacy, Marti has worked with children and teachers for the last 15 years to promote an early love of reading. Her debut book, Jala and the Wolves, recently made the top of Amazon.com’s bestseller list for children’s fantasy.
Lies of Blue is the story about Lynne Forde, a young woman who tries to reach her dream by making sacrifices. Somewhere along the line, the wrong sacrifices get made. It's Training Day meets OZ with a twist of Set It Off. When Forde gets tired of her dead end job in the City Courts, she embarks on a career in the belly of the beast. With a degree in hand and a little bit of street sense, she decides to try her hand working in River's Edge Jail Complex. From day one at the Academy to her last day at Prison, Forde evolves from your average "rookie" into something other than just a woman.
To make matters worse, if you put a sexual being in the midst of some of the city's most conniving men and women, you are bound to come up with something a little kinky and very destructive. The more dangerous the game became, the more erotic the encounters became. She goes from Officer, to Hustler, to Vic, to CEO in a matter of 8years.
Lies of Blue is an expose of what goes on in the belly of the beast, through the eyes of one woman. Lies of Blue teaches you that there are so many people you may come across in life, you never know who is real and who is fake, but that the journey can become a battle of life or death. Choose wisely. What is the price for fulfilling your dream?
Meet author Lynne Forde
What is the true price for fulfilling your dreams? Is it going against your own standard beliefs, becoming something you’re not? Or putting yourself in a position to be “eaten alive” by your enemy or better yet your supposed to be friends and people you thought were on your side. Lynne Forde examines that question in her new novel, Lies of Blue.
Set in New York’s grit and grime, this epic full-length novel tells the story of an aspiring music executive who gets caught up in the world of men, money and drugs. In her attempt to escape the poisonous world of entertainment, Lynne launches a new “career” as a correctional officer in a men’s prison. The trials and tribulations that follow send her spiraling into an even more disastrous world from which she came, eventually putting the young woman up against games that can kill. Join Lynne on her journey as she comes full circle with her mistakes and choices in efforts to finally realize her dream.
As Lynne Forde’s first full-length novel, which is accompanied by a straight to DVD movie version of the work, this multimedia project looks to set a milestone in urban fiction by introducing a new element for the reader. As a phenomenal writer with the ability to fully capture her own experiences in words, Lynne is also writer for the people. Women and those who go against all odds to progress, in particular will be able to explore real life situations in lyric and sound as they journey with Lynne Ford into the Lies of Blue.
The premier author of Saffyre Entertainment, Lynne Ford is making quite a statement. Personifying strength, success, and ambition, the CUNY graduate and New York resident has effectively introduced a new hit to the urban literary market. “Lies of Blue,” which addresses the question, “What is the true price of fulfilling your dreams,” deals with the decisions and consequences of a young woman driven to make something of herself and life. Drawn from personal experiences and occurrences, “Lies of Blue” is a true depiction of the real world and its realms of “good vs. evil”.
An ambitious woman and trailblazer with several other written screenplays, including “Living the Dream” and “Best Kept Secret”, Forde lives with no regrets of the sacrifices she has made to become the woman she is today. Hoping to aid other individuals who are put in between the hard decisions of life, “Lies of Blue” is a compelling novel that will make a difference in many lives. A firm believer in the word ‘sacrifice,’ Forde knows she has more to make, but if she can help others through those sacrifices she has already made, than it all will have been well worth the struggle.
Coming from origins that span into music, production and management, Forde has had the privilege of working with 45 King, the NBA, and some of New York City’s hottest underground artists. Joining forces with Saffyre Entertainment in 1998 has successfully propelled both of the entities to the forefront of the entertainment industry. In addition to staking her place in the world of entertainment Forde is also currently working on a number of community based projects that include the H.O.P.E. Foundation, which will enable men of color to make an easier transition back into the community. This is first of many ways Forde intends to reach out and uplift the community.
With the Ability to combine her street knowledge with business savvy, which allows her to speak to both “the hood” and the boardroom with ease, her life experiences have just begun to show the industry how bright her light can shine. The sky is truly the limit for Forde as she has created a critically acclaimed trailer for her book “Lies of Blue” totally changing the face of urban literature.
Besides steadily gaining fan momentum, Forde has also impressed a number of industry heavyweights including, Warrington Hudlin of BET who is quoted as saying, “The room was electrified and swept away by your story.” Susan Taylor of Essence Magazine quoted the story as “Compelling”, while Oprah’s Oxygen Channel has considered making the story a TV Series. To date Lynne has been successful in promoting “Lies of Blue” on a number of circuits that include the American Black Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival Cinemas, Radio, Mass and Urban Publications, Black owned bookstores and HBCU’s across the country.
Lynne Forde, author Visit Lynne's website at: http://www.liesofblue.com
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Sadeqa Johnsonis a former public relations manager who spent years working with well-known authors such as JK Rowling, Bebe Moore Campbell, Amy Tan and Bishop TD Jakes before becoming an author herself. Her debut novel, LOVE IN A CARRY-ON BAG was hailed by Ebony.com as “this summer’s hottest read.” It was the recipient of the 2013 Phillis Wheatley award for Best Fiction and the 2012 USA Best Book award for African-American fiction. Originally from Philadelphia, she now resides in Virginia with her husband and three children. SECOND HOUSE FROM THE CORNER is her second novel.
BPM: When did you get your first inkling to write, and how did you advance the call for writing? I’m originally from Philadelphia. As a kid, I started off wanting to be an actress. When I graduated high school, I moved to New York and attended Marymount Manhattan College as a Theatre Arts major. It was as a student that I started fooling around with poetry, which turned to playwriting, screenwriting and ended up with novel writing. I landed a job working in publishing after college and it was there that I became very serious about my writing. My first novel, Love in a Carry-on Bag took me over ten years to finish. I started writing it when I was a publicity manager at G.P Putnam’s Sons.
Every day I would close my office door at four o’clock and write for the last hour of the workday. On my commute home, I edited the pages. Once I got married, I left my corporate job to write and raise my children, but still nursed a burning desire to tell stories. I wrote during naptimes, between feedings, in the midst of sleep deprivation and my kid’s ear infections. The daily pressures of caring for a young family motivated me to finish the book. I was very much like Felicia in Second House From the Corner. As much as I loved being a mother, I didn’t want that role to be my only claim. I knew that it was important for me to carve out something that was only for me, and writing novels was it. My novels are my legacy.
BPM: What makes your writing different than others? I’m a lover of words and keep a thick, old school thesaurus on my desk, which I use to deepen the meaning of the text. I don’t like to rush when I’m writing, and I’ll work on a paragraph for three days if it takes that long to make it sound good. Although I’m a commercial fiction writer, I work to bring poetry, beauty and music to my work. My goal is to make readers pause over a delicious sentence, giving them no choice but to read it again.
BPM: Can you share a little of your current work with us? Introduce us to your book and the characters. I love everything about Second House From the Corner. In the novel, Felicia Lyons, a stressed out stay-at-home mom struggles to sprint ahead of the demands of motherhood, while her husband spends long days at the office. Felicia taps, utters mantra and breathes her way through most situations but on some days, like when the children won’t stop screaming her name or arguing over toy trucks and pretzel sticks, she wonders what it would be like to get in her car and drive away.
Then one evening the telephone rings, and in a split second Felicia’s innocent fantasy becomes a hellish reality. The call pulls her back into a life she’d rather forget. Felicia hasn’t been completely honest about her upbringing, and her deception forces her return to the Philadelphia of her childhood, where she is forced to confront the family demons and long buried secrets she thought she had left behind.
BPM: Did you learn anything personal from writing this book? I wrote Second House From the Corner in about a year and a half, which was much different from my ten-year haul with Love in A Carry-on Bag. I learned to outline and draft quickly, and then to just punch the story out and fix it later. There were a lot of loving hands that touched Second House From the Corner and for that I am so grateful and utterly proud of the finished product.
BPM: What would you like to accomplish after this book is released? Don’t laugh, but my deepest desire is to be on the New York Times best sellers list. I have been putting that out into the Universe since day one so I know it’s going to happen. I also plan to sell the movie rights and be paid (well) to consult on set as the movie is being filmed. My children are going to love walking the red carpet. Selling the foreign rights and seeing my novel printed in several languages would also make me happy. Eventually I’d like to teach a writing group and get out on the motivational speaking circuit.
BPM: Are any scenes from the book borrowed from your world or your experiences? Oh, yes. I am a mother of three children. My kids were about the age of Felicia’s when I started writing the book and a lot of her experience of feeling overwhelmed and worn out with the duties involved with caring for small children was what I felt as a young mother. I still feel it at least four times a week. She taps her way through it, I go to hot yoga, run and meditate to find my center.
BPM: What should readers DO after reading this book? Tell all of their friends to buy a copy. I really believe it takes a village to make a best seller. Word of mouth is the best form of advertising so please, please tell a friend. Your review on goodreads.com and all of the retailer’s website would also be wonderfully helpful.
BPM: What are your career goals as a writer? Have you accomplished most of them? Right now I really admire Attica Locke. She wrote a book called The Cutting Season that I couldn’t put down. Then one night I was watching the show Empire, and her name popped up in the credits as producer and writer. Immeditately, I had goosebumps. I’m so proud of my fellow writers when they cross over and do big things. As I sat watching, I thought, could I write for television? Mmmm, I’m just going to let that thought marinate. Hosting a show on television would also tickle my fancy.
BPM: What have you realized about yourself since becoming a published author? I’ve realized that I am exactly where I am supposed to be. Every moment in my life from going to college in New York City as Theatre arts major, to my first two jobs in publishing as a publicist, to starting my own publishing house and having to do everything possible to get the word out on Love in a Carry-on Bag has led me to this moment. I’ve worked hard, I deserve to be right here and my future is even brighter. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for me.
BPM: What are you the most thankful for now? I’m grateful for my health and the health of my family and close friends. I enjoy waking up every morning, getting my kids off to school (most times without arguments and tears but not always), putting on a pot of coffee and going to work in my robe. God is always amazingly good to me. Oh, and I have a sexy, supportive husband to boot.
BPM: Do you have any advice for people seeking to publish a book? Don’t quit. Writing takes time and dedication and it is very important to be true to the craft. Take writing classes, form a writing group and read as much as you can. Give yourself time and permission to grow, and be patient with yourself. Believe in your creativity above all. Allow the magic to flow.
BPM: What’s next? I’m working on my third novel, And Then There Was Me. It’s about deception and betrayal. It’s scheduled to be published by Thomas Dunne Books spring of 2017 so stay tuned. And click right over to my website, www.sadeqajohnson.net and subscribe to my blog. I’ll keep the latest news listed there. I’m on all of the social media outlets so get in touch with me. I’d really love to hear from you.
Alysia Burton Steele is a journalism professor at the University of Mississippi and author of Delta Jewels: In Search of My Grandmother’s Wisdom. In 2006, she was a picture editor for The Dallas Morning News photo team that won the Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News for their Hurricane Katrina coverage. She designed the National Urban League’s 100th commemorative poem booklet written by Maya Angelou. Prior to teaching, Steele was a photojournalist, who later became a photo editor at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Articles about her book have appeared in The New York Times, NBC.com, USA Today, Chicago Sun-Times and Southern Living.
BPM: Tell us about your passion for writing. Where does it stem from? My passion for writing comes from talking with others and sharing history. I focus on nonfiction, narrative stories. I am a journalist by trade and by passion. I've always enjoyed talking with people, so it's just a natural fit to interview people and write about life experiences. I want more African-American history, as told by our people, to be in books. I want a better collection of oral histories. Our country needs it and I am convinced that if more young people-children read our stories, they'd understand their history that's not mentioned in classrooms and in school books - and these stories should be included.
BPM: What was your primary quest in publishing Delta Jewels: In Search of My Grandmother’s Wisdom? I did this book, Delta Jewels: In Search of My Grandmother's Wisdom, because I missed my grandmother, Mrs. Althenia Aiken Burton. I moved to Oxford, MS to become a journalism professor at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, MS. I saw scenery in the Mississippi Delta that reminded me of my childhood summer days at Gram's family home in Spartanburg, SC. I wanted to pick up the phone to call and tell her what I was seeing and feeling, but I couldn't. She passed away 20 years go. She raised me from the time I was 4 years old and she died when I was 24 years old. I regret never really asking her about her life growing up in SC. And I started thinking about all the time I wasted arguing with her over boys, makeup, school, chores - instead of sitting down to listen and learn more about her. When you age you reflect on life. I missed my grandmother. I missed the smell of her perfume, the way she stood in the doorway to watch her loved ones leave. I thought about the skills I had acquired as a journalist and decided I would pay it forward and interview other people's grandmothers. I wanted to take beautiful, dignified professional photographs of their grandmothers and record stories. Somehow, by the grace of God, it became a book.
BPM: Who did you write this book for? Why? Initially, I wrote this book for me. I was on a personal journey to understand my grandmother's contemporaries. It was never meant to be a book, but a project. I was going to self-publish to give the mothers, who agreed to be interviewed, a copy for their families. I couldn't talk to my grandmother, but I could talk to the women of her generation. I needed their wisdom in my life. I missed my sweet Gram. After The New York Times wrote about my project, I received several offers to publish a book. So, Delta Jewels was published. I am hoping this book inspires MANY younger women to talk to their female elders, male too, but I want the women to have some glory. We need it. I want more African-Americans to record histories. In my opinion, there isn't enough published in school books, so let's publish it ourselves and teach our children.
BPM: Can you share some stories about people you met while researching this book? I've met and have been welcomed into the lives of 54 new grandmothers and you know 19 pastors helped me. Couldn't have done it with Clarksdale Mayor Bill Luckett, who gave me pastors' cell phone numbers. I called one and we talked. That's how it started. Rev. Juan Self was the first pastor, and he also the architect who redesigned the Memphis Civil Rights Museum. I drove 6,000 miles to interview women in 27 Mississippi Delta towns.
I even got to interview Mrs. Myrlie Evers, widow of slain civil rights leader Mr. Medgar Evers. She even shares what "their song" was and it's a precious moment for me. I've met Mrs. Tennie Self, 88, who was so angry when a car dealership refused to sell her a Cadillac, she drove almost two hours, bought one in Memphis and then drove past the dealership who refused to sell her one, honked the horn and waved at them everyday.
I met Mrs. Leola Dillared, 103, who was thrown off a cotton plantation in Yazoo City, MS because she refused to have her little girls pick cotton. She wanted them to go to school. She was told she would be thrown off the land if she insisted because she would "ruin" the other blacks, who would want to send their children to school. She chose to be thrown off the land. All of her children have masters' degrees and one has a Ph.D.
I have Mrs. Velma Moore, 78, mother of 15, grandmother of 145 (yes, 145!) who dragged a woman out of church because she was talking about how fine Mrs. Moore's husband was. She felt disrespected. The woman said she didn't know he was her husband, but she meant what she said, so Mrs. Moore said she meant was she was fittin' to do - and she punched the woman in the face. Stories that make you laugh, cry and beam with pride. I love each and every one of these mothers and am blessed to know them. Unfortunately four have passed away since the book came out nationwide on April 7, 2015. And this drives home the point of why we must capture our history.
BPM: Walk us through your journey to success. How did you get to this point? I started Delta Jewels in summer 2013, so it's been two years. I didn't know anyone, didn't have a grant or sponsors. I saved up $50 here, $100 there - literally, for nine months, for gas money to go interview the women. They all lived two - four hours away from me, and I was teaching three classes at the time, but I drove on days I wasn't teaching or went on weekends. Thank goodness for my husband who was, and continues to be, supportive. He held it down. He was there every step of the way. He's a blessing and a man of God. I couldn't have done it without him. It was tiring, but exhilarating. I had my own private history lesson for nine months - a time I treasure. If I could do this full-time for the rest of my life, I'd do it. I'd just go and collect stories and archive them. I love it. It's my passion.
Anyway, I reached out to one pastor, who agreed to meet me, hear what I wanted to do and liked my spirit and idea. He connected me to one mother, who connected me with another. In the end I had 19 pastors helping me, initially talking to the mothers for me, who would then talk to me. It was a domino effect. By chance I had a breakfast meeting with my assistant dean, several colleagues and a columnist for the NYT, who was intrigued by my project. Sam Freedman, the columnist, flew down, rode in the Delta with me and wrote about my project. The day it published in the NYT, I had a publisher writing to me. When God gives you a blessing, when you have a destiny, you follow it. I did what I was supposed to do. The women often thank me, but it was me they saved, so I thank them. I think I understand my Gram now.
I'm filing my IRS paperwork to start the nonprofit called Delta Jewels Support Foundation. I am hoping to receive grants, donations to offer college scholarships to children who live in the Mississippi Delta, who attend or graduated from county and city schools only. I am also hoping to give the mothers honorariums and then I want to travel to teach oral history workshops to churches, school, universities, any organization that wants to learn how to do it. Again, I want a movement.
BPM: What has been your greatest challenge and how did you overcome it? My greatest challenge was fear of the unknown. You have to listen to God and follow your destiny. You have to get out of your own way and do what you're supposed to do. You'll know it if you listen. I didn't have the money, had no idea what I was doing, wasn't knowledgeable about the Delta, but I did it and am so proud of myself. More importantly, I'm proud of the women for talking to a stranger, opening their hearts and homes - and memories to share. They shared so others could learn. What a blessing! The women thank me for what I'm doing for them, but I thank them. They saved ME from 20-year grief. It never goes away you know, but you just have to step out on faith. It sounds cliche, but it's true. Step out and do what you're supposed to do. Everything will work out the way it's supposed to. Don't let fear or the unknown deter you. God has you.
BPM: Do you feel as if your writing is making a positive impact on readers, women, or the world? I'm receiving emails from people in Geneva, Rome, New Zealand, Australia, England - it's wonderful. There's so much appreciation from women all over the world who LOVE reading these stories. There are Caucasian men writing to me saying they learned so much and are having their teenage sons read the book. Imagine that! Just today, I promise you, I received this email - a woman told me she reads one story a night to her 6-year-old son. How precious is that? This books is cutting across race, gender and age and what a blessing - especially considering all the racial tension the media shows. The reality for many in our country is bleak with violence. Young adults are saying this book inspired them to find out more about their parents. It's uplifting to know that my personal project, the one I did because I miss my sweet Gram, is helping and touching lives. That's nothing but God.
BPM: What legacy do you think this book offers future readers? My writing offers the following legacy to future readers....the importance of oral history. I want to start a movement of recording more oral history from our elders. They say when an elderly person dies, a library burns down. I don't want anymore libraries to burn down. We must interview our mothers, fathers, grandfathers, grandmothers. We must talk to each other more often and understand the importance of our contribution in American history, and we do that by recording more and saying thank you to our elders. I'm about to start my new book about cotton in a few weeks. More much needed oral history. I'm going to keep going.