Novella’s have my heart. The Stella Trilogy was a novella series and readers loved it so I had to write another short story! (If I am honest, I think they are kinda my thing).
This book is coming to you on Tuesday, October 2, 2018.
Proceeds from this book will go toward the funding of my next poetry contest.
We are looking to level up BIG time for year three!
This is modern-day literary fiction and is available now for pre-order.
Cover Reveal for
‘Even Salt Looks Like Sugar’
Wanda wants nothing more than to escape the oppressive upbringing of life with her abusive foster mother. Miss Cassaundra manipulates the system by bringing lost children into her home turned whorehouse and collecting the money. Wanda knows what it’s like to be abandoned and has no doubt that Abby is Cassaundra’s next case. When an opportunity arises that could save them both, Wanda must find a way to get the paperwork that will secure their freedom. But Cassaundra’s got eyes everywhere and no one can be trusted when even salt looks like sugar.
Title: Even Salt Looks Like Sugar, a novella
Author: Yecheilyah Ysrayl
Publisher: Literary Korner Publishing
Publication Date: Tuesday, October 2, 2018
…and we are still riding! It’s not over people! Not until the winner is crowned…
Special thank you to everyone who has participated in this contest in some way. Everyone who submitted poems shared the post on social media, volunteered to sponsor or judge, and just overall supported this endeavor. As the headline suggests, this is only my 2nd year hosting this contest. My hope is that each year it gets better and better and that we are capable of offering you more every year. I am excited to say that we are on track with that!
Last year, we received amazing support and crowned an amazing poet as our grand prize winner.CLICK HEREto read last year’s winning poem and to meet last years poet!
This year, we have leveled up big time!
2nd Annual – 27 poems, 16 contestants
I made some mistakes last year but everything is a learning experience and we wouldn’t be here if there wasn’t a first! So big ups to everyone who helped, sponsored, hosted, judged and participated in that modest but most excellent contest last year!
I took those lessons from last year, noticed the mistakes I made, and applied them to this contest and still, there’s much to learn. Which is why me and my team are already thinking of improvements for next year! We hope to do it even bigger by offering you more publishing packages. Eventually, we’d very much like to progress to offline open mic opportunities as we get better. The sky is not the limit here people!
As a reminder, we are announcing our grand prize winner and runner-ups on Wednesday, August 22, 2018. For a reminder of what is at stake, be sure to revisit the entry guidelines and prizes postHERE.
Poets, be sure to check your email (Spam or Junk folders) and submit the required information at your earliest convenience.
The rest of you, be sure you are following this blog and my social media handles (below) to stay in the loop and to be reminded of our crowned winner. Which King and Queen will take home the grand prize?
When I started my self-love journey, at 30, I didn’t even know it was a thing. I didn’t know that other women had started self-love journeys too, many of them starting in their 30s. I also thought, when I started, that I was headed to a specific place. “I’m on a journey of self-love,” I’ll tell people. They probably just rolled their eyes. I was acting like I was on my way to the spa or something. Like after three weeks of prayer and meditation I would arrive. That suddenly, after a month of Sunday’s I would be so aware of myself that insecurity and uncertainty would never find me again.
Over one year later and I am still finding myself, still learning myself, still fighting off insecurities and uncertainties. Almost two years and I am still developing that deeply personal and spiritual understanding of myself. That’s because self-love is a process, a journey, not a destination. It’s not some place you come to after three prayers and an inspirational quote. It’s something that develops over time and that only gets stronger as you age.
Ever wonder why elderly men and women have such a “I don’t give a damn,” attitude?
It’s not that they don’t care about anything. It’s just that they’ve been on this Earth long enough to have such a deeply personal understanding of who they are that they will not allow anyone else to tell them about themselves, neither do they care what others think of their actions. It’s important for you to know that you will not get to the place they are immediately. Just like they had to go through the years, you will have to go through them too so you shouldn’t rush the process. It could take years to truly heal from trauma, heartache, depression, self-hatred or whatever spirit is stopping you from fully loving yourself.
This also means that in this process you will have to be intentional, deliberate, and disciplined about re-examining who you are as an individual. And you must be very, very honest with yourself. Without honesty, you are doing yourself a great disservice and you are headed for self-destruction. A life built on deception will eventually crumble. You can’t heal by covering the wounds with more crap. You must expose the wound and allow healing to take place. This can’t happen if you’re just going to lie to yourself.
Before you commit, understand that Self-love is a long-term commitment of learning and knowing yourself. It happens in stages and can take years.
Now, go write a poem about Self-love or Self-Care in some way and enter it into my 2nd Annual Poetry Contest! We are SIX days out. Don’t miss the chance to win money, a beautiful notebook and pen, publication, promotion, and books!
What does self-care mean to you? What does it look like to you? What do you think of when you hear self-love? How can we take better care of ourselves?
CLICK HERE to read through all the entry rules and guidelines and then email your poem to yecheilyah(at)yecheilyahysrayl(dot) com. Also remember this is a free entry contest so there’s no entry fee to enter. But hurry! Time is running out!
When Nora White is drugged by her friend she is forced to deal with the harsh reality of life in the North. She meets Keisha and the women catch a ride to The Den, a gambling and numbers hole-in-the-wall in Jacobsville New York. Unlike the upper echelon of Harlem, Nora’s new friends are hustlers but down to Earth and feels more like family. They take her to Liberty Hall where she is introduced to Marcus Garvey’s Universal Negro Improvement Association (U.N.I.A.).
Meanwhile, Nora has no idea her father has been arrested and back home Molly is hanging on by a thread. When the community discovers the truth of the alleged crime they devise a way to get Gideon out of jail but their actions could mean life or death for everyone involved. Will Nora come to her senses and return home in time to help the family or will her naiveté lead her astray once again?
“I found myself enthralled with this story. The way the author blends the actual events of the past with her fictitious interpretation is compelling. The visual depictions of the surrounding had me inside the room when Nora was waking from one of her spells. I could smell the open air of the South and feel the breeze on my face at the lake. I had the feeling that if I took a step, I would enter into the realm of Nora and her friends as they prepared for the huge Marcus Garvey event at The Garden.”
“The author uses each scene to push the story forward so that it doesn’t lag. The pacing is so good that I was eager to know what would happen next. The cast of characters is large, but the author has already proven her skill at balancing multiple arcs and POVs. Like Book 1, Revolution is also well-researched. The author weaves history with her fictionalized narrative seamlessly. The scenes with Marcus Garvey delighted me (I’m Jamaican). I always keep an eye out for a connection between the title of a book and the heart of a story, and found it both in the Garvey sketches and in particular events that unfolded in the South.”
If you’d like to grab a copy of this book in person and you’re in the Atlanta-Land area this summer, I’ll be at the Atlanta African American Book Festival at Georgia State University on July 14th from 10 am to 5pm Eastern Standard Time. I’ll have copies of Renaissance and Revolution available. This is your chance to hang out with me in person and grab these babies in paperback. To check out my AAA interview, click here.
Welcome back to No Whining Wednesday! It’s been a minute since our last one so I am excited to be back. If you are new to this blog or new to this segment, please refer to the original post HERE. In brief, this is the day of the week when we do not whine, complain, or criticize. How have you done so far? You know us. We complain before getting out of the bed!
How often do we attribute complaints to others? Probably about 95% of the time. Someone is always doing something to us, offending us or thinking badly of us in some way. But is it always others or is it us?
The truth is that it’s easier to think more about others than we do about ourselves and let’s face it, that’s a good thing on the surface. You don’t want to be a “lover of self” (2Tim 3:2). But balance is important in every aspect of our lives. It’s important to be there for others but it’s not cool to leave ourselves behind. I’ve learned that complaints are rooted in some form of unhappiness within ourselves. We aren’t the weight we want to be, we aren’t fulfilled at our jobs and relationships, and we are just not happy with ourselves in some capacity.
When you are not happy with yourself, everything annoys you and you complain more. The truth is like Dr. Phil said, we can’t control others. We can influence them. We can motivate them. We can inspire them, but we cannot control them. The only people we can control is our own selves. Spend some time with yourself and discover what it is about you that will make you happier and more fulfilled. Take some time to be a little bit selfish. I admit I have been. I have not written many reviews this year and I have not been as supportive as I know that I should. This is not because I have not wanted to. This is because I went through some hurtful things and I needed to make sure that I was good too (without projecting that onto you). I needed to refuel myself and do things that made me happy so that I can be there for others. I needed to take my own advice and keep myself just as full as I was keeping others. I needed to do this because being there for others without being there for myself meant leaving myself behind and leaving myself empty. And when you’re empty, what can you give? Only after you have dealt with you can you sincerely help others.