My guest today is Yecheilyah Ysrayl and is an author, Spoken Word Artist and blogger. She was born on the south side of Chicago and began writing short stories and poetry at the age of twelve. She studied at various eductional institutions after leaving Harper High School, including studying Professional and Technical Writing at Chicago State University and Medical Assistance/Phlebotomy at Everest College.
Yecheilyah began performing poetry in High School where she joined UMOJA Spoken Word. Since then, she has went on to perform in various cities throughout the U.S
She is the author of Young Adult, Black American Literature and Poetry. The author of eight books (most notably, The Stella Trilogy), Yecheilyah is currently working on her next book series “The Nora White Story”. Renaissance: The Nora White Story Book One is due for release July 15, 2017. Revelation: The Nora White Story Book Two is due for…
Good Morning! Or afternoon or evening. OK, whatever. Hi!
I’m having coffee so I thought we were long overdue for a chat. It’s been awhile since I just talked to you guys. I mean outside of blog segments, interviews, fun facts, blah blah blah. Soooo, how you? (as the country folk say).
So, go get your coffee or tea …
(…even though it really wouldn’t be a coffee date. Bringing tea to a coffee date is a little weird but we won’t judge you…pull up a chair) and let’s talk about life.
I’m doing well and if we were having coffee right now I would tell you there’s a lot going on, because of which I am not sure how often I’ll be posting probably for the next few weeks as we get closer to launch day (wow, it’s that time again!), well, outside of author interviews that is. Those are scheduled and will continue to post every Monday. I’ll also still be guest blogging so you’ll see me around.
Currently, I am getting ready for Chicago in two weeks. I have a lecture to attend and while there I intend on getting some word of mouth going about my soon-to-be release. I grew up in the Chi so there’s ample opportunity to pass out some cards. Speaking of which, book one in The Nora White Story will go up for preorder…..soon. Thought I was gonna tell ya huh? Nope. Not yet.
If we were having coffee right now I’ll tell you that I am also preparing for The Tampa Indie Author Book Convention in July and that I am not sure if Hubby can tag along or not (boo). His schedule is kinda hectic. If not I will need a personal assistant to accompany me. The last time I did something live I totally forgot to take lots of pictures. That is NOT happening this time.
(Can’t sign books and take pictures at the same time. Oh, wait, maybe you can?? I better patent this idea before someone else figures it out and it’s on the next commercial for 39.95).
Anyway, things are kinda crazy so I’m hoping that I can still make it myself while I’m talking hee hee. Keep hope alive.
If we were having coffee right now I would say that I am totally thinking about attending the U.S. Blogapalooza in Chicago on Aug. 26. I want to go because a. It’s not expensive to attend and b. I grew up in Chicago so it’s nothing for me to take another trip out there and c. I want to get as much travel in as I can this year. Time to step on out the shell you guys. Kinda. I’ll kinda still be in my shell when you see me…
I’m also supposed to get some kids this summer so I’ll have to see how this will work. If I time it just right I can drop them off on my way to the Blogapalooza.
(The best thing about being a TT is that you can hype them up on fun and then drop them off to mommy and daddy when you get tired of them. #Winning)
I got some nephews who are supposed to come down to irritate entertain me. In fact, I got a baby who will be here tomorrow. Well, OK, that’s not fair. BJ’s not a baby anymore. Technically he is ready to be potty trained. Yay for wearing the big boy draws!
Let’s see here what else? I am on the finishing end of book two in The Nora White Story but since Book One isn’t out yet I won’t speak much about it although I am loving it if I must say so myself. I don’t wanna make book one jealous or anything but I’m just so into the second half of the story. I may even consider, once both books are out, an ultimate special edition where the books are combined. Yaass.
If we were having coffee right now I would say that I am almost ready to reopen for new book review submissions.
BUT I am keeping it very limited this time around and only accepting a handful.
Anyway, be looking out for that announcement.
If we were having coffee right now I would say that my coffee is almost gone and I’ve already spent 20% of my time on this blog so it’s time to go.
Maybe the book didn’t come out the way you envisioned it would or maybe you’ve got a one-star review. Maybe your editor marked all up and down your manuscript or someone critiqued the confidence right out of you. Maybe you failed, miserably. And maybe you want to crawl underneath the covers and will yourself away. If only you could shrink so that even your body disappears. Maybe, just maybe you are becoming a good writer.
Good writers get negative feedback at some point, period. Good writers get it wrong A LOT. Good writers fail, miserably. Good writers have confidence that appears low because good writers are humble. Good writers are scared to death of publishing the next book because good writers are real. They mess up. They get mixed reviews and feedback.
The difference between their failures and those who quit is that good writers have failed so many times that they are equipped to handle disappointment. And therefore, have the resilience and maturity to get back up and try again.
The next time you receive feedback that makes you want to cringe you gotta remember that you are in good company. Every good writer was a failure first and every master was first a student.
Don’t misunderstand me, everyday ain’t beautiful. I don’t want my optimism on this blog to be too sweet for you. Cheerfulness ain’t a pill you can take that will make it all go away. I don’t want you to think that the struggle isn’t real, but if you never mess up, if you have never doubted, if you have never failed, never been knocked down, and if you give up too easily then maybe you can never really become a good writer.
Welcome to Introduce Yourself, a new and exciting blog segment of The PBS Blog dedicated to introducing to you new and established authors and their books.
Today I’d like to extend a warm welcome to Brenda Scruggs. Welcome to The PBS Blog! Let’s get started.
What is your name and where are you from?
Hello, my name is Brenda Scruggs and I live in the Volunteer State -Tennessee.
Cool. My in-laws are in Memphis. Are you married? How long?
I will be married 24 years this April.
Hey! Gone head witcha bad self then. Happy anniversary! Who is your best friend?
I couldn’t ask for a better friend than my husband. His support and encouragement is more than I than I could ever imagine.
Awwue. Yaass. I love it. If you had unlimited funds to build a house that you would live in for the rest of your life, what would the finished house be like?
It would be a Mediterranean Style house. I love the openness of the floor plans. And, the house frames are different than a traditional house.
Nice. Are you employed outside of writing? Tell us about your job.
By day, I work as a Merchandiser for Foster Grant and American Greetings, by night, I am a finger typing writer, as my husband would call me.
In your own words, what is love?
Love is more than words, its action. My definition of Love would be Selflessness – putting others above yourself.
I LOVE that definition! Selflessness. Yes. What genre do you write in, why?
At the moment, I’ve written Christian Fiction Romance/Suspense. One that is currently in print, “The Chocolatier,” a story that downloaded in my head one day when someone asked me if I wanted a piece of chocolate, my response was, “I’m not fond of Chocolate.” Which is true, growing up, I remember, I always chose any other desert before I picked chocolate. (Crazy, I know). Another “Protector,” is to be released soon. But, my work in progress, is Historical Romance. I believe with Romance/suspense gives the reader a little edge wondering how the twists will turn out. The reason I began writing historical fiction is when I started doing research on the area that I’m from. I immediately thought of 1876, and the way the country could’ve appeared. Tennessee has a rich history in horse racing which peeked my interest.
Not fond of chocolate?! Whhaat.
Speaking of works, when did you publish your first book? What was that like?
The feeling an author gets when they first open the box of their printed book is almost indescribable. For me, it was a mixture of jumping up and down then wanted to hug it as if it had been a lost puppy returning home.
I think you’ve just described every writer reading this post! Jumping up and down and hugging the book is definitely a must. What do you hate most about writing advice? What do you love?
Honestly, I don’t hate any writing advice. I can’t grow in my writing if I can’t receive any advice. Proverbs 9:9 “Give instruction to a wise man and he will be still wiser. Teach a righteous man and he will increase his learning.”
Uh oh, she dropping scripts yall! I love it. Prov. 9:9 is one of my favorites.
Does blogging help you to write?
I do believe blogging helps me write. I have two blogs an author blog and Many Hats of a Lady blog. On one, I post and reblog about writing and the other, I have more freedom of posting different subjects. So, I’m continually, thinking and writing something along with my manuscript.
Awesome. Thank you, Brenda, for spending time with us today!
Branda is leaving us with a little treat! Here’s a blurb from The Chocolaiter. Enjoy:
Would her heart learn to trust again? Would she be able to love again? Charlene Callaway finds herself far from home after finding her fiancé with another woman on their wedding day. She moves to San Francisco when her friend convinced her to start a new beginning. But, when she goes to work at a Chocolate Company, she wasn’t ready for her new boss. She wouldn’t let her heart get broken again. Charles Riveria an heir to huge Chocolate Company was content as Director of Marketing. Charles’ passion is to represent Riviera Chocolate making it the best empire in the industry until he literally bumps into Charlene Callaway. When a stalker abducts Charlene, Charles finds himself doing everything in his power to find to her even if it took his cousin, the leader of a black opt team to find her.
Bio. Brenda studied journalism in high school which stirred her imagination into putting words on paper. Years later, she read an author’s interview that awakened the creativity that laid inactive. She gathered her thoughts and laid her pen to paper and hasn’t stopped.
Brenda loves to create stories in either Contemporary or Historical settings that take the reader on travels of conflict and suspense with a flavor of romance. Her characters are strong and determined while facing oppositions that could alter their way of life.
She is married and lives in Tennessee. She takes pleasure in watching television with her husband, eating Mexican food and scribbling her thoughts on paper.
The death of Sheila Abdus-Salaam, the first African-American woman, and the first Muslim, to serve on New York’s highest court and the shooting of Karen Smith, a teacher, in San Bernardino, shot and killed by her estranged husband.
I was planning to post my “Five for Friday” fun facts, but decided to put it off until next week. Two tragic, senseless events occurred this week, but there has been little reported about them. Most outlets, everywhere I look, are fawning over the Drumpf and how “presidential” he’s suddenly become because he knows how to launch missiles and drop bombs. That is supposed to be the last resort, when all other things have failed – but this jackass is determined to do anything to distract from the scandals and valid questions surrounding his administration, and it appears to be working.
Title: The Sleeping Serpent: A Woman’s Struggle to Break an Obsessive Bond with her Yoga Master
Author: Luna Saint Claire
Print Length: 428 pages
Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1928816762
Publisher: Compelled Books (October 19, 2015)
Publication Date: October 19, 2015
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
The Sleeping Serpent follows Hollywood costume designer Luna and several other women and their obsessions with their manipulative yoga instructor Nicolas or Nico. Appropriately titled, this book is deceptive on many levels. First, I picked it up as a psychological read but it can easily fall into erotica just the same so that was a bit of a surprise. (As I don’t usually review Erotica but since its not technically in the Erotica category we’ll let it slide).
Nico uses Chakra and Kundalini magic to put women under a spell that makes them cling to him in more ways than one. Falling victim to his elegant speech, smooth words, sex, and laced tea, the women become drawn to him without realizing it. Not only do they allow him to abuse them physically and emotionally, but they also invest in him financially and comes under the captivity of doing whatever he wants them to do and despite how he berates them, the women cannot get enough.
Nico is not just a yoga instructor. Nico is a warlock, a sleeping serpent preying on the vulnerability of successful women in an attempt to turn them into his mother. I think the most powerful portrayal of Nico’s spell is over Luna herself. While she is not as clingy as the other women and on occasion tells him how it is, I feel that the mental hold Nico has on her is stronger than the physical hold he has on the other women. Though married, Luna will drop everything to be with him.
The book is written well and maintains good pacing, although after a while I did start to think the story was just repeating itself as Nico captivated woman after woman and sexes them crazy.
I would recommend this book to lovers of Erotica, Romance, and Psychological Thrillers. (I’m starting to really like these psycho reads! Wait, does that make me a psycho??)
Plot Movement / Strength: 4/5
Entertainment Factor: 4/5
Authenticity / Believable: 4/5
Thought Provoking: 5/5
Overall Rating: 4 / 5
The Sleeping Serpent: A Woman’s Struggle to Break an Obsessive Bond with her Yoga Master by Luna Saint Claire is Available now on Amazon. Go Get it!