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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Maya Angelou Rocks!




I have been inspired to share this poem all week...I can remember the first time I'd read Dr. Maya Angelou's poem, Phenomenal Woman.

I was awed by the words I read- now some odd years later, the poem's affect is still same today, if not more intense for me!

Can you feel this one? Inspirational, motivational, strong, survivors, achievers. Salute! And to the strong men by their sides. Salute!







PHENOMENAL WOMAN
by Maya Angelou

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies
I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size
But when I start to tell them
They think I'm telling lies.
I say,
It's in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It's the fire in my eyes
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing of my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can't touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them,
They say they still can't see.
I say
It's in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Now you understand
Just why my head's not bowed.
I don't shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It's in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
The palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
'Cause I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Black Diamond by Ja'Nese Dixon




About Ja'Nese Dixon


Ja'Nese Dixon writes fiction novels for readers yearning to escape and disappear into a good book. Ja'Nese's debut novel, Black Diamond is scheduled for release in June 2010. She resides in Houston, Texas, with her husband and their two children. For more information visit http://www.janesedixon.com.




About Black Diamond

Camille Blackwell, an undercover FBI agent, poses as a jewelry purchaser in an international diamond trading company in hopes of identifying the domestic players in a vicious rebel group suspected of trafficking conflict diamonds. The Bureau requests CIA renegade Marc Fulton's assistance with sweeping international intelligence to identify the major rebel organizations with the finances and stateside connections strong enough to evade criminal prosecution, despite Camille's objections.

Their attraction is instant and tense; both resolve to focus on the case. But when Camille receives an encrypted memory stick from a murdered co-worker Marc may be the only person she can trust.Black Diamond is the eagerly anticipated debut novel by Ja'Nese Dixon. True love, like black diamonds, is rare and precious but when murder and a persistent criminal threaten a frail relationship, will love triumph?



Black Diamond by Ja'Nese Dixon Virtual Book Tour is organized by Nia Promotions, a marketing company that assists authors and publishers with using web-marketing strategy to market and promote books on the internet. Follow Ja'Nese's tour at http://bit.ly/blackdiamondvbt.

Author Interview:

V. Richardson: Hello Ja’Nese. It is a delight to be chatting with you.


J. Dixon: Thank you. I appreciate you extending the offer.


V.Richardson: When did you first consider yourself a writer?


J. Dixon: I considered myself a writer as a child. I loved writing poetry and lyrics. I’m still coming to terms with being a novelist. I claim it now that I’m holding Black Diamond in my hands and once I look back at the hours and hours of work it required to bring this project to life. However, it still stutters off my tongue when asked.


V. Richardson: Black Diamond is your latest book. What is the synopsis about and how did you come up with the title?


J. Dixon: Camille Blackwell, an undercover FBI agent, poses as a jewelry purchaser in an international diamond trading company in hopes of identifying the domestic players in a vicious rebel group suspected of trafficking conflict diamonds. The Bureau requests CIA renegade Marc Fulton’s assistance with sweeping international intelligence to identify the major rebel organizations with the finances and stateside connections strong enough to evade criminal prosecution, despite Camille’s objections. Their attraction is instant and tense; both resolve to focus on the case. But when Camille receives an encrypted memory stick from a murdered co-worker Marc may be the only person she can trust.


Black Diamond is the eagerly anticipated debut novel by Ja’Nese Dixon. True love, like black diamonds, is rare and precious but when murder and a persistent criminal threaten a frail relationship, will love triumph?

As for the title, I found myself fascinated with a black diamond jewelry set. At that time, I didn’t know that black diamonds existed. After conducting my research I decided to focus my story on the diamond industry, but I kept the title. Readers will find that it plays a significant role in Camille’s life.


V. Richardson: What do you want readers to take away from Black Diamond?


J. Dixon: I want readers to close the book knowing more about the plight of people affected by conflict diamonds and how our personal choices can adversely involve people around us.


V. Richardson: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?


J. Dixon: No. I trust that every lesson was needed or due to my stubbornness. It also provides more experience for the next project.


V. Richardson: Who are your literary influences? And what books have most influenced your life most?


J. Dixon: My list of literary influences is too long to share here. However, I can name a few. Beverly Jenkins, Anita Bunkley, Karen Wiesner. I’m an avid readers so selecting a few is like asking to pick a favorite child. The books that most influenced my life are the Bible and “Why Should White Guys Have All The Fun?” Both have been instrumental in my life.


V. Richardson: What have you discovered about yourself on your journey to publication?


J. Dixon: That I am extremely resourceful and I excel under pressure.


V. Richardson: There is always a story behind the author’s works. How do/did you handle rejection (s)?


J. Dixon: I believe it’s their loss. I always find a way to move ahead. I know that what is meant for me will be mine. Thus, I accept that those moments and/or opportunities are meant for another.


V. Richardson: What advice would you offer to aspiring authors?


J. Dixon: “Greater is He that is in me, than he that is in the world.” (1 John 4:4) You will experience highs, lows, disappointments, rejection, and so much more on this journey. It’s not easy. But hold on to what God has placed in you and you’ll be fine.


V. Richardson: Are there any up coming and/or future projects readers should be made aware of?


J. Dixon: I am currently on the virtual book tour for Black Diamond. You can read about prior stops on my website. I am also a contributing author in Coffee Confessions. Please visit my blog for my appearances, events, and books. So, I’m promoting like a mad woman and writing my next book, Intoxicated.


V. Richardson: How can readers contact you?


J. Dixon: Website and Blog: www.janesedixon.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/janesedixon

Book Page: www.facebook.com/authorjanesedixon

Twitter: www.twitter.com/janesedixon

GoodReads: http://www.goodreads.com/janese_dixon


Bonus Question

From The Heart:


V. Richardson: When life can get a little hectic and you are feeling a little dismayed. How do you find peace in the storm?


J. Dixon: I have a book of my favorite bible verses that I pull out and read. Many I have committed to memory. And I’d love to share two verses that ensure me of God’s love for me through any storm.


“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart.” Jeremiah 1:5


“The Lord is with me, I will not be afraid. What can man do to me? Psalm 118:6


These verses are real to me because they remind me of two things: He’s in control and I have to trust His process. It sounds easy, but our daily walk speaks otherwise. Which is why we’re charged with placing His words in our heart. Most of our sorrow, heartache, pain is at the hands of another person. Thus, in those moments I remind myself that it’s not about me, but is has everything to do with Him and I allow His words and spirit to comfort me.


V. Richardson: Ja’Nese, it was awesome to chat with you. Thank you for sharing yourself and your works with our reading audience. Much success to you! As always in closing, continue to inspire as you aspire!


Sunday, July 11, 2010

I Am Who I Am


I Am Who That I Am

Growing up I was surrounded by beautiful women. It still remains so today. I am surrounded by a bevy of beautiful women, focused, humble, and sure-footed. Their statures ranges from small to full figured. Some skin tones ranges from dark chocolate to vanilla. Just beatific and not esthetically so. These ladies are beautiful both on the inside and out side. Suffice it say that their mother’s has certainly raised them right.



They wear their high heels with great ease. Their accessories are always in place, and their make up is on point. Fierce are these sistah’s! I love it! But, ahh, it’s not for me. Lol. The point of this entry is simple: Be you. I prefer my low shoes. Don’t get me wrong. I am a lady and like feeling and looking like one. But I am who I am and they respect me for that. Never do they try to change me. My weirdness and all. True friends will let you be and/or do you.


Authentic friends may see you are on a path self-destruction they will call an intervention. Sometimes we can be too close to our pain and we can not see things with clarity. Authentic friends will issue an prevention. They know when to talk and when to back off. To hear and to listen. To talk and to speak. And yes, my friends, yes, yes, yes there are a difference between those entities. In the end be who you are and what you are designed to do-- as you do you! Your shoes looks good on you! Just your size...work it.


Monday, July 5, 2010


ReShonda Tate Billingsley is a national bestselling author of 19 books, all published by Simon and Schuster/Pocket Books. In 2000, after numerous rejections from publishers, ReShonda stepped out on faith, established her own publishing company, and self published her debut novel, My Brother’s Keeper. The book caught the attention of one of the country’s top literary agents, who secured a deal for ReShonda with megahouse publisher, Simon & Schuster/Pocket Books.

The rest, as they say, is history.

ReShonda went on to sign one deal after another with Simon & Schuster and to date, is considered one of the country’s top inspirational authors. Her sophomore novel, Let the Church Say Amen, is being made into a movie of which she is Executive Producer and actress Regina King is the director. ReShonda’s literary career is such a success that in 2007, she was able to leave her job as a reporter with Fox 26 News in Houston to write full time.

ReShonda has appeared on the Essence Bestseller’s list more than 20 times, as well as The Washington Post, Dallas Morning News and Ebony Magazine Bestseller’s lists. Her books include The Devil is a Lie, Can I Get a Witness, The Pastor’s Wife, Let the Church Say Amen, Everybody Say Amen, I Know I’ve Been Changed and My Brother’s Keeper. Her inspirational teen novels include Nothing But Drama, Blessings in Disguise,With Friends Like These, Getting Even, Fairweather Friends, Friends ‘Til the End, and Caught up in the Drama. She has one non-fiction title, Help! I’ve Turned into my Mother. ReShonda has won numerous awards for her journalism, fiction and poetry writing skills. She is a five-time winner of the National Association of Black Journalists Spirit in the Words competition, one of Rolling Out Magazine’s Top 25 Women in Houston and H-Texas Magazine’s Top Professional.

ReShonda’s upcoming projects include Holy Rollers (July 2010), Say Amen, Again (July, 2011), the teen novel Drama Queens (Fall 2010), and two travel suspense novels. The Houston native also serves as a freelance editorial and marketing consultant. She has ghostwritten four fiction projects and five non-fiction projects. She is married with three small children and does not hide her addiction to Reality TV and Facebook.

She welcomes readers to her websites at www.reshondatatebillingsley.com.

About the Book

Looking for Love...

Lifelong friends Coco, Nita, and Audra have spent years looking for love in the arms of flashy pro athletes, hoping to land a baller but ending up with a stream of failed relationships. The beautiful and demure Coco has endured years of physical abuse from her boyfriend, Sonny, while Audra, a single mother, has dated her fair share of cheaters and yearns for a stable companion who will be a father figure to her son. And feisty, seductive Nita is tired of being the million-dollar mistress and wants to settle down—if she can find someone worth coming home to.

Changing the Game . . .

Now that the women are approaching thirty, they’re finding it harder than ever to compete with the pro groupies. Determined to change the game and find some worthwhile men, Audra hatches an outrageous plan. Soon the trio is “holy rolling,” masquerading as God-fearing churchgoers at a local conference for young ministers in the hopes of snagging a prominent pastor. But will their big gamble pay off? Men of the cloth are still just men, after all. As the three friends meet their potential life partners, they will have to decide how far they want to take their holy rollers scheme—each risking heartbreak while taking a chance on finding a reliable, responsible man to love and cherish, flaws and all.

View the blog tour schedule at http://bit.ly/HolyRollersBlogTour