ISSUE 20 HAS ARRIVED
LAST STOP FROM INNOCENCE
DISCIPLE OVER MOTIVATION
ROMANCE~ OUR TOP FIVE
SUBSCRIBER GIVEAWAY ~ INTELLECTUAL INK
HOT MIC ~ PODCAST OF THE WEEK
WHO'S NEXT KIM MORRIS
Welcome back to the nineties! This decade was full of amazing fashion, music, and books that gave voice to our culture. We’ve decided to take a trip down memory lane and bring you some of our favorite moments from this unforgettable decade. Issue 20 features Takerra Allen, author, director, executive producer, and one-half of ASP films. We discuss her writing journey from "Heaven's Hell to "Last Stop from Innocence".
As always, we've got our regular features: Charlotte's Young-Foye and Shonda Mays take us back down memory lane with "Old School Forever" and Growing Up in the 90s." Erick S. Gray talks about the backlash from the new Little Mermaid. Haikeem Stokes takes us to Kendrick Lamar's "Big Stepper's Tour," and Author Untamed invites you to "Wine Down with Words." In Write News, we have Tanisha Stewart, and Who's Next features Violette Meier, Kim Morris, and Yasmin S. Brown.
Grab a pumpkin spice late and take a ride with us as we go back... way back... Back to the 90s!
This issue is dedicated to all things '90s, and “Last Stop from Innocence” reads like a love letter to that era. What inspired this novel?
I have always loved the 90s era, especially the late 90’s where the novel takes place - 1998 to be exact. It was a pivotal time for me. Although younger than the main character in my novel at the time, I will never forget that summer. I was going into high school, DMX was everywhere, and we were on a high of simple euphoria. Being black, being young, and our small world filled with so much innocent fun and excitement. Capturing that feeling inspired the novel. That pure feeling of the 90’s where everyone and everything was authentic. People acted and thought for themselves. There was an array of styles, opinions, and being an individual was cool. Of course, the novel has some twists down dark paths. But that authentic feel of the ’90s lingers throughout it. Looking back at that time as an adult, I always wished I could bottle it. I guess writing Last Stop in a way did that. I sort of made my own 1998 time capsule.
Can you tell us about your writing journey? From “Heaven’s Hell,” to “Last Stop from Innocence,” how do you feel you’ve evolved as a writer? And is there anything that you wish you’d kept the same?
I’ve evolved. I think it’s impossible not to. At the start of my writing career with novels like Heaven’s Hell, I was younger with less direction. I was truly writing off the cuff - figuring out what I enjoyed writing and ultimately what I was good at. I was less detailed, the pace of my novels was quicker, and it mirrored where I was as a writer, as a new learner, and as a woman. I had fun with it but I didn’t think as much as I do now. My goals were different. I just wanted to write books. Now 12 years later, I know my voice at the moment – I say at the moment because as humans we are forever evolving, growing, and changing. But I believe ultimately, I know who I am as a writer. I’m more polished. I know what I enjoy writing, what I’m good at. I have a lane I’ve established for myself and my sole purpose when sitting down at a computer is how I push myself to take that lane further and further to an emotional, creative, enjoyable experience formyself and my readers. Basically, I now know who Takerra Allen is. I’m just working on letting the rest of the world know. But if I had to keep something the same, maybe the only thing is I was so less critical of myself. I’m my own worst critic now. If that last book was here, I have to take this one there!
READ FULL ARTICLE HERE
A nostalgic tale of first love, first loss, and the budding womanhood of a black girl in the 90s.
Tragedy flips Amore Brown’s world on its axis before she heads off to college. Having to sit tight for the summer, she chooses Jersey City, New Jersey – the home of her estranged father - to pass time. Here in urban grit, a stark contrast from the comfort of the suburbia, she reconnects with a long-lost cousin for some final months of summer excursions, enrooting, and evolving. But it could never be so simple - even if it were all so simple then.
Girls just want to have fun transforms into a kindling of summer romance tucked into the crust of good times, tribulations, close calls, and one hot summer in Jersey. Amore meets THE guy, finds solace for fresh wounds, and battles the thorny relationship with her father; all while learning heartache has no limits.
But how much will Amore have to lose to find herself? On the road to the woman she’s becoming and removed from the girl she is no more; one stop changes her path forever.
FINISH YOUR NOVEL ~ DISCIPLINE OVER MOTIVATION
For many people, the hardest part about writing a book is finishing it. You may have started with the best of intentions, but life gets in the way and suddenly you're years behind where you wanted to be. If you're struggling to finish your book, here are four ways that may
help you get over the hump.
Get rid of distractions and create a conducive environment for writing
If you want to be a productive writer, you need to create a writing environment that is conducive to concentration and focus. This means getting rid of distractions like television, social media, and household chores. It also means setting aside a specific time and place for writing, where you will not be interrupted by others.
Creating a conducive environment for writing can be difficult, but it is worth the effort. Once you get into the habit of writing in a focused manner, you will find that your productivity increases and your quality of work improves.
Set achievable goals and track your progress
This means setting goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-based. Once your goals are set, it's important to track your progress so you can see how close you are to achieving them.
There are a few different ways you can track your progress. One way is to keep a journal or log of your daily activities and how they relate to your goal. Another way is to create a visual representation of your goals, such as a graph or chart. Seeing your progress in black and white can be a great motivator to keep going.
Whatever method you choose, make sure you review your progress regularly so you can adjust your goals as necessary. And don't forget to celebrate each accomplishment along the way!
Take breaks when needed, but don't let them derail your progress
In today's society, it's easy to get wrapped up in work and feel like you have to push through regardless of how you're feeling. However, this mindset can often lead to burnout. It's important to listen to your body and take breaks when needed, but you also don't want these breaks to completely derail your progress.
One way to strike this balance is to schedule breaks throughout the day. For example, you might take a five-minute break every hour or so. This will give you time to rest and recharge without taking too much time away from your work. You can also use these breaks as an opportunity to move your body and get some fresh air, which can help improve your focus and productivity.
Of course, there will be times when you need a longer break than what you've scheduled. Maybe you're feeling overwhelmed or sick. The important thing is to listen to your body and allow yourself to rest. Rest should be a part of your daily routine.
Join a writing group or take a class
If you're serious about becoming a writer, one of the best things you can do is join a writing group or take a class. Here, you'll be able to get feedback on your work, meet other writers, and learn more about the craft.
There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing a writing group or class. First, make sure it's something you can commit to. There's no point in joining a group if you're only going to show up once in a while. Second, try to find a group that meets your needs. If you're just starting, look for a beginners' group. If you want to focus on fiction, look for a group that specializes in that genre.
Finally, don't be afraid to ask around. Talk to other writers and see if they have any recommendations.
ROMANCE~ OUR TOP FIVE
When it comes to finding a good romance book, there are many different things that people look for. Some want something light and easy to read, while others want something with a bit more depth. Whatever you are looking for in a romance book, there is sure to be one on this list that will suit your needs.
Entangled Hearts: Volume I (The Harts Book 1)
As America's favorite singer, Chynna James has it all—beauty, fame and wealth. BUT being in the spotlight is not all it's cracked up to be and Chynna feels as though she's missing out on life and wants to break free. A chance encounter with sexy, widowed rancher Noah Hart gives her the perfect inspiration.
Love So Heavenly (A Clean Christian African American Romance Book 1)
Kayla Simmons is the daughter of a strict pastor and is fed up of being so sheltered, but she forgets all her troubles by singing, her favorite thing to do. One day she blows everyone away at an open air talent contest, and no one’s more impressed than Tyrese Malcolm. He’s a cynical billionaire playboy who’s avoided responsibilities for as long as he can remember.
Sage Dunbar is dealt a shattering double blow when she discovers that her fiancé has depleted her bank accounts and her father has been having an affair. Reeling with shock, she accepts a job promotion that involves relocating to Anchorage, Alaska. She never expects to cross paths with a man who will challenge everything she thought she knew about love.
An International Affair (A Lassiter Wedding Series Book 1)
What happens when dysfunctional families meet the Lassiters? They all learn the meaning of LOVE... Love is Kind, Love is Patience, and Love... lasts for a Lifetime. The Lassiter siblings have been blessed with an internal detector identified as the love gene. Now, that they have found love, one obstacle after another is threatening their happy ever after....
What if your soon-to-be ex-husband invited you on a divorcemoon, five nights at your bucket list baecation spot for one last hoorah before you go your separate ways? Would you go?
SUBSCRIBER GIVEAWAY ~ INTELLECTUAL INK
SUBSCRIBER GIVEAWAY! CONGRATULATIONS TO BRIANA CHECK YOUR EMAIL! YOU'VE WON AN ECOPY OF INTELLECTUAL INK ISSUE 20
HOT MIC ~ PODCAST OF THE WEEK
Black Books Live! seeks to address the dearth of audio material available from Black Authors. Hosts Jason Harris, Cher Jey and guests will read excerpts from a Black author's classic works. Links to the print and audio copies of the featured author will be included with each episode.
WHO'S NEXT ~ KIM MORRIS
Kim Morris is a serial composition book and pen buying author and poet, who loves to write longhand. If you like reading about love, drama, deceit and murder, then log on to Amazon and purchase her books. She recently released her fourth book Just Emotions. Other titles by Kim Morris include, Slipping in the Darkness, Tears I Shed, Tears I Shed 2 and the short story Karma. She is currently writing her fifth book. Kim also writes poetry and has a book Rhythms in Purple under the pen name Kyrielle Simile. When not writing, she loves to re-purpose old furniture and paint abstract art. Kim loves hearing from her readers, so come share some of your time with her via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.