If We Were Having Coffee Right Now

It has been a while so I thought I’d take these few hours I have here to update you all. I have been and still am to an extent out of the loop. Life pretty much happened.

That said, pull up a chair! Which would you prefer? Coffee? Tea? Water? I also have Almond Milk. I’ll go grab the cups while you take a seat on the sofa.

*Walks into the Kitchen, grabs drinks. Walks back into the living room*

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I’ll just sit this on the oversized coaster here. There you go. Comfortable? Good. Let’s begin.

  • If we were having coffee right now I’d admit it’s been a challenge getting back to this blog. I am in the midst of a big life transition (no worries, good things…we’ll talk about it later) and it’ll be a few weeks before I am settled in enough to get back to my regular schedule. I will, however, be checking in every now and again with some articles and throwback Jams. I am actually drafting an article now. I am doing lots of travel and am for the most part without internet most days so it’ll be a while before I can post it. In the article, I’d like to address the #TakeAKnee protests taking place, among other things, and the importance of staying focused. I am feeling that people are not paying attention.
  • If we were having coffee right now I would tell you that I am closing the Book Review Registry until I can catch up. I have not been doing much reading during my time away (as I wanted to) and still need to start on some books I committed to reviewing. No worries though. Book Reviews will return on this blog soon. I have a few books I’ve finished that I just have not had the time to sit down and write a review for. When I do, I’ll be scheduling those posts. Again, it may be rare until we are settled but I’ll be posting things every now and again.
  • If we were having coffee right now I would remind those of you who are authors and are interested in being interviewed on this blog in my Introduce Yourself Feature to email me your questions. Though I am on and off with this blog at the moment I can still schedule interviews when I am near a connection if I see your questions in time. To learn more about my Introduce Yourself Feature, click through to the original post HERE. The feature is free and the authors featured so far have seen positive results (some have even sold books!)
  • If we were having coffee right now, I would tell you that I am working to release a book this fall, time permitting. Keep Yourself Full is a thin book and won’t have a big launch. It is something I am putting out to keep you encouraged and charged. A combination of the most inspiring posts on this blog as well as some new words of encouragement built around the concept of Self-Love. It is a reminder that self-care nourishes the quality of our life and makes us fit to be of service to others. It helps to keep us grounded and to care about something greater than ourselves. The book is just about finished and I am hoping to set a date real soon.

In the meantime, you can read Keep Yourself Full free when you sign up to join my Advanced Review Team. CLICK HERE to join. I’ll be sending the team’s copy over to read in the near future. To learn more about this book, see a previous post HERE.

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“You don’t have anything to give that you don’t already own. Keep yourself full.” – Yecheilyah

(*I am looking for serious readers only for the ARC Team. Anyone who proves inactive (offering me no feedback) will be removed from the list so please be sure you have the time to invest in this before you sign up. *)

  • If we were having coffee right now I would say that life pretty much slowed me down for September but that I hope to be back in the swing of things for October. I have not been doing much work outside of writing (we’ll talk about that more later as well…focusing on one task at a time and balancing family and work life to be more productive) and will be looking to catch up on some of your blog posts. I’ve been staying in the loop via social media but I haven’t been able to participate in much beyond my mobile device. That said, if you haven’t seen much of me know I am at most times without internet outside of my phone but that you’re in my thoughts.

 

Chat Soon.

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Life

So what’s going on people? It’s been awhile since we talked together so I thought we’d do that today. So…

OK, I’ll go first.

So my husband is doing well. His leg is strong and we’re getting back in the swing of things. Though I do hate he’d have to go back to work soon…boo. Oh, and I do have an exciting new update. I’ve been on baby duty lately. No, I’m not pregnant (yet lol) but I am baby sitting and I must say he’s the absolute cutest. So yea, he’s the culprit taking up my blogging time. You cutie you!

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Nephew BJ, Age: 1

BJ has been waking me at 7am with sweet kisses and lots of love. I mean, just look at him. Who can resist that face?

Hmm, what else? I went to Houston recently so that was pretty cool. Got to spend some much needed family time and all that good stuff. I mean, I had to do some work too but I enjoyed seeing the fam while we were there. It’s been raining a lot lately too, which of course is inspiration to write more. I’m pretty sure everyone reading this blog know how much I love the rain by now. I love the calmness of the air and listening to the wind.

That’s it for me, for now. So, what’s up with you all? How is life?

Bitter Sweet

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Its cold, obviously, in Chicago. The irony is that this week has been like Chicago’s cold bitter wind and the warmth of the sun on my cheeks at the same time. Similar to how the sun is just strong enough to warm the ground but not the wind. Like the sharpness of a very dark chocolate. While  the book release and trip to Atlanta has been sweet, the call that my mother has fallen ill has left my mouth with the bitter taste of a strong coffee with no cream and no sugar.

Truth is I just want to go somewhere and hide. The new book is exciting and the signing and presentation went very well. In addition, the play following was amazing. This thick, syrupy goodness I will hold on my tongue always.

Immediately following the play, I jumped on a plane to Chicago and have not been home since then. Instead, I’ve been back and forth to the hospital everyday while simultaneously promoting my new book and balancing other priorities. In addition, my husband is having surgery on his knees soon which means I’ll be leaving the Chi soon.

But you know me. The grind must go on. I hope to be fully engaged in this blog soon with my regular obsessive postings! Lol

Y’all be great.

– EC

Coffee Date: Travels

I am still traveling but I wanted to give you an update while I have some down time. Would anyone like some coffee? Tea? Hot Chocolate? I’ll have a coffee with French Vanilla Cream, no sugar (the cream is sweet enough). And lets make that steaming hot. It’s cold out there!

Since we are having coffee right now, you should know that I am still waiting for more pictures to come back from the Book Signing but that it was a beautiful event.

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My Team

First, I had a team of eight sisters who helped me to put it together and I am forever grateful for their generosity. Because of them I didn’t have to keep watch over the kitchen or escort people to their seats or take my attention away from the presentation. (*Team work always makes the dream work!*) My editor was also in attendance and we were both surprised with gifts from our supporters. Mine was a glass plaque with my company logo on it and some really encouraging words. I’ll upload a picture of it when I get home. It is absolutely stunning!

Order of Events

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The library itself was excellent. Very spacious with a beautiful kitchen to store the food (the pic shown is before we covered it with all kinds of goodies. Still waiting on those pictures to come back). I began with a video of the Book Trailer and a PowerPoint presentation. I decided to do it this way to keep it fresh. The images and moving pictures helped capture and keep the audience attention as I rambled on about the details of the book. There was also a Q&A session.

Me and Harry
Me and Harry

Since we are having coffee right now, you should know that I had the privilege of meeting a man named Harry. Harry is an older man whose family were sharecroppers and he expressed exciting interest in The Stella Trilogy. For those who don’t already know, I am really passionate about having these kinds of conversations with the elderly or older men and women who have lived during these times. It is a wisdom I think that we should all cherish. My dad in law has given my husband and I very exciting stories of his boyhood and their experiences picking cotton and sharecropping as well. It is most exciting. I believe oral storytelling is a major stepping stone to the writing of books today. Before anything was written down, it was passed along orally.

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Next, we offered food and snacks to the guest as I prepared for the signing and allowed everyone to mingle. This gave me the opportunity to go around and speak to some of the guest. I think this is very important for Book Signings. You want to try to avoid sitting at a table all day. Instead, I wanted to make it as engaging and family oriented as possible. I think its important that everyone feels special and part of the process. After all, these are people who invested in me. It’s only right that I invest my time and attention to them too.

Since we are having coffee right now, you should also know that I was in a Black History Stage Play the day after the event (Sat.) at The Riverside EpiCenter (Blakk Amerika: From Prophets to Pimps) and it was absolutely powerful. I was casted in 3 roles: Besty Mae, a plantation slave whose son was sold away from her. Sheila Jones, Besty’s great great granddaughter some years later, and I also had the privilege of closing the play with a poem.

I’ll have more updates soon. Before we get out of here, I do want to thank everyone for their support of this work so far both offline and across social media.

Until next time, peace and love

– EC

Knowing Where To End Your Story

Good advice. I would add that for me even just knowing where my story will END helps me to find my way to the beginning. Usually, if I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, then I can write the story.

YOURS IN STORYTELLING...

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The other day someone asked on kboards just what they ought to do if they knew where they wanted to END their story, but not where they wanted to START it from.

This is basically how I answered that question.

For me, a story is a little like a journey. It really helps if I know WHERE I want to start off from and WHERE I want to get to. It is kind of like that whole Google Quest map thing where in order to get directions you have to punch in BOTH locations to find out how to get from here to there, providing you don’t mind driving through that brand new school that was built last month and hasn’t made it’s way onto Google Quest yet.

:)

So – if, as in your case, I just DON’T know where I am starting from – I’d probably just try and…

View original post 323 more words

Writer’s Quote Wednesday – Break

I am taking this month (December, ’15) off for Writer’s Quote Wednesday. I will still post quotes as is my custom on this blog but I will not be participating in the weekly WQW posting as is hosted by Colleen of Silver Threading. The next few months are extremely busy for me so you may notice my posts lessen a bit in general. I believe its important to know your limits and to, as fellow blogger Whitney so eloquently put it, not to be an empty cup. If your no good to yourself you cannot be of service to others. That said, for those of you who I still owe book reviews I have not forgotten and intend to publish them either before years end or January at the latest. As for WQW, I will return in the new year time permitting, when I return from my end of the year travels.

Peace and Love

 – EC

Stella’s GoFundMe Campaign

EC can't wait to use her new camera in Atlanta
EC can’t wait to use her new camera in Atlanta

I hope everyone is having a great weekend so far (get yo rest on!). I’m just here to remind you of Stella’s current Go Fund Me Campaign. You see, Book #3 is about Joseph McNair, Sidney McNair’s son, and he and his friends are on their way to Atlanta. So I decided I would accompany them on their trip but we need your help.

We have to raise some money to make sure that we have enough books available at the first Stella Trilogy Book Signing Event in Atlanta GA. The event takes place Friday, February 26, 2016 @ 12:00 Noon EST at the Metropolitan Branch Library. It is also the same day I will be launching the release of Book #3.

As you all know Self-Publishers are also self funded. Whatever you can give, no matter how small, is most appreciated and I look forward to continuing to share Stella’s journey with you.

Also do not forget that I am giving away free review copies in exchange for honest reviews but copies are limited! Only 18 left from now until February. Just roll your eyeballs up to my pages and click on “Sign Up For an ARC of Stella Book 3”.

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BTW: Your support is not just financial. You can also give your time. Schedule a trip to the ATL and meet me there! Stella is very excited to meet all of you! Help me set up or volunteer to help me in general. Its going to be fun!