Write Stuff Author Spotlight — That was Then, This is Now by Paulette Harper *EXCERPT*

Hello. I’m Excited. This is one of my stops for the Virtual Book Tour That Was Then, This Is Now, This Broken Vessel Restored. This virtual book tour is organized by Write Now Literary Book Tours. This tour runs September 28, 2017.  Follow the tour here.  Book your own tour here WNL

Genre: Christian Non Fiction

Kindle ASIN: B073VCY1L5


About the Author


In addition to being an award winning author of Completely Whole and Secret Places Revealed, Paulette is an inspirational speaker, as well as a writing workshop instructor. 


Her literary works have been spotlighted in a growing number of publications, including CBN, Real Life Real Faith Magazine, The Sacramento Observer and Black Pearls Magazine. 

She has also appeared on numerous local and online radio shows.
Paulette is also the owner of Write Now Literary Book Tours. She resides in Northern California.





                     About The Book

HOW COULD GOD HAVE A PURPOSE FOR ME AMIDST THIS MESS?

WHY DO SUCH BAD THINGS HAPPEN TO GOOD PEOPLE?

If you’ve recently asked yourself these questions, Paulette Harper’s That Was Then, This is Now has the answers. Struggling to recover from a broken marriage and disappointed dreams, Paulette Harper gropes for meaning and understanding. And through her searching, God reveals Himself to her in ways she never before imagined possible. By sharing her struggles with transparency, she illustrates how a heart attitude of surrender allows God to use a broken vessel for His ultimate plans of glory.

That Was Then, This is Now, minsters to hurting hearts in every season in life, reminding them that God restores shattered lives, intent on using them for His sovereign purposes.



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Chapter 2

Don’t Get Bitter, Get Better

Our enemy often tries to use the disappointments and setbacks in life to cause us to become bitter with God and with those that hurt us. From my own experience, I persuade you to use what has happened in your life as a stepping stone to propel you to a new level in growth and to a place of faith and determination in God. Remember, setbacks in life are opportunities that God will use to show you how faithful He is. “Let all bitterness, wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking, be put away from you with malice” (Ephesians 4:31, NKJV). “Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up troubles you; and thereby many are defiled” (Hebrews 12:15, KJV).

The Hebrew word for bitterness is pikria, which is translated as extreme wickedness, a bitter root and so producing a bitter fruit, hatred. Malice, in the dictionary, is a desire to harm others; to see others suffer, spite. Defiled means to make filthy or dirty; to profane; corrupt.

In the book of Ephesians, chapter 4, the Apostle Paul is warning believers not to revert to the “old man” when faced with testing, trials, and tribulations. The amplified version of the scripture tells us to “strip away” the old, unregenerate man. Your “old man” is deceitful and corrupt and walks under the sway of the enemy.

Some of the characteristics of the old man are anger, lying, indignation, fury, polluting language, rage, and resentment. When you are facing the difficulties of life, don’t allow the circumstances to control how you are going to act or respond, especially when you have been hurt. We feel that we have the right to retaliate against those that hurt us, but the Apostle Paul says:

Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, vengeance is Mine, I will repay, say the Lord. Romans 12:17–19 (NKJV)

When you take it upon yourself to inflect hurt onto others because they hurt you, you are standing in the position as a god. God does not need our help in dealing with people that have hurt us. Retaliation comes from a wounded spirit, and a wounded spirit is liable to do anything and say anything. When you respond out of a wounded spirit, there are consequences to your behavior. You cannot justify yourself, nor can you escape the correction God will bring to you. The Bible gives us the answer on how Christ deals with a wounded spirit, “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5, KJV).

Paul is addressing Christians, born again believers, the people of God, because he is aware of the struggles we face with the flesh and how we deal with those that have hurt us. Since you are a child of God, your behavior should reflect the nature and lifestyle of God.

Did Christ retaliate against His enemies? No, He did not—He died for them; He blessed them; He prayed for and loved them. Scripture records that Christ opened not His mouth (Isaiah 53:7). Although Christ was innocent of the charges against Him, He refused to yield to the will of His enemies.

When we allow bitterness into our hearts, the scripture says that we are defiling our temples, and God will not dwell in a dirty temple. God is taking account of how we treat our brothers and sisters in Christ, and He will deal with us accordingly.

The truth of the matter is everybody is not pulling for you. Some people want you to fail. They will not celebrate your victories with you; they want you to suffer because of something you did to them. They are praying that God does not bless you; they want to see God punish you, and they want you to stay in bondage. However, regardless of the actions of others, you are to maintain your Christ like disposition. Devastations, hard times, troubles, and disappointments will come and people will hurt you, but whatever life brings you, don’t allow it to cause bitterness to spring up in your heart.

If the test you’re facing is one of the hardest and you’re still standing, rejoice and again, I say rejoice. The next test you’ll face will cause you to stand even stronger, and it will not move you out of the position you are in right now. Through it all, allow the tests,




 

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Write Stuff Author Spotlight — Sons of Ishmael by Unoma Nwankwor

Hello. I’m Excited. This is one of my stops during the one month tour for Sons of Ishmael Reintroduction Tour: The Danjuma Brothers by  Unoma Nwankwor.  This virtual book tour is organized by Write Now Literary Book Tours. This tour runs September 11 – October 5, 2017.  Follow the tour here.  Book your own tour here WNL      
 
Genre: Christian Fiction/Romance
About the book
A SCOOP OF LOVE~ SONS OF ISHMAEL BOOK I 

The oldest of the Danjuma brothers, Rasheed was a self-made man. He’d learned at an early age that love and commitment brought with it complications he didn’t want to deal with. His single-minded focus had paid off. He was able to step into the shoes of his absentee father by taking care of his mother and twin brothers. But just when he thought he could stop carrying the weight of his family on his shoulders, he gets a call that could change the trajectory of Rasheed’s life.

Ibiso Jaja, a professional caterer, had gambled on the love of a man and lost. Through the redeeming love of God, she had picked herself up and was now living her dream as the owner of Bisso Bites, a bistro in the heart of Abuja. However circumstances conspire to threaten the bistro and bring her face to face with the type of man she has vowed to avoid. The attraction is instant.

Once again, Rasheed is forced to do something he has done all his life – put the needs of his family ahead of his own. This time however, he crosses path with the sassy, independent, Jesus-loving caterer who is bent on making him see the power of forgiveness and God’s love. Just when Rasheed lets his guard down, a deadly sabotage causes old demons to rise. Will Rasheed continue to pursue power and success or surrender to the light of God’s love?

Rasheed Danjuma sighed aloud at the sight of another unwanted email from the law

offices of Ezekiel and Stanley. These lawyers were beginning to work his last nerve. He placed his finger over the touchpad of his laptop, directed the cursor to the delete icon and pressed it.It had been six months since Zayd Danjuma, the man that contributed to his genetic makeup had passed away. And his lawyers were still hounding him. Rasheed had thought his non-attendance of the funeral service was a clear indication of his disinterest in anything they had to say about his so-called father.

Determined not to let the email ruin his day, he picked up the receiver and dialed his
assistant’s extension. She picked up at the first ring.
“Yes, Rasheed?”
“Have you heard anything back from those clients in the United States?”
“No, I didn’t,” she said. “But while you were on your conference call, your mother
called.”

Rasheed felt a strange rise in his stomach. His mother almost never called him on his office phone unless she wanted to reach him in a hurry. “Did she leave a message?”
“No, she just said to let you know she called.”
“Okay, thank you.” He disconnected the call.

Rasheed walked over to his jacket and pulled out his cell phone. Looking out of the large window of his Hyde Park office, his sense of unease grew. He checked, and there were three missed called from his mother. His voice mail was empty. What was going on? He dialed his mother. She answered on the third ring.

“Mama, you tried to reach me. Is everything okay?”
“Nna, I really don’t know how to answer that.”
His mother used her term of endearment, Nna, for her sons when she wanted to ask for something she knew they didn’t want to give.“What is it?”

“Those lawyers from your father’s estate came to see me today,” she said. “Rasheed, I don’t want those men in my shop or house. I’m asking you again to come home and see what they want.”
Rasheed’s jaw set. How dare those lawyers hound his mother? Why was it so important that he and his brothers attend the stupid will reading? Even though it had been twenty-five years since their father had walked out of their lives, the memory of that morning was still vivid. Their father didn’t care about them in life, so why was he so concerned about their well-being in death? Squaring up against those lawyers himself was one thing, but when they involved his mother, it was totally different. He wouldn’t have it.

“You mean they came to your shop?” Rasheed asked as though he didn’t hear her the first time. Anger shot through his feet as he began to pace the length of his office.
“Yes.” His mother’s voice sounded shaky. “It’s one thing for them to call but to show up,I don’t appreciate it. They almost scared my customers away.”

After his mother had retired as a school administrator, she had decided she couldn’t sit idle. Her love of fashion led to the opening of a boutique in the heart of Abuja’s business district. Within months, the business had flourished. Rasheed had supported her because whatever made his mother happy made him happy, too. After many years of living in pain, she deserved to live her life in peace. They all did.

Rasheed’s mind went back to the email he’d received earlier in the day. Since these
lawyers were playing hardball, it was clear he had no choice but to travel to Nigeria. “If those lawyers call you again, tell them I’ll be there soon.”
His mother’s sigh expressed her relief. “God bless you, my son.”
“It’s okay, Mama. They better make it worth my while. If not, I won’t be held responsible for my actions.”
 ANCHORED BY LOVE~ SONS OF ISHMAEL SERIES BOOK II

When cardiac surgeon, Jabir Danjuma met Damisi Odinga at the University of Michigan seven years ago, it wasn’t necessarily love at first sight. With love comes commitment and he knows that’s not a promise he could keep, after all he is his father’s son. However, their attraction can’t be denied. Their ensuing one year romance is passionate and intense, and he begins to feel the forbidden emotion—love. Just as he starts to let his guard down, Damisi breaks up with him and moves half way around the world to Lagos, Nigeria. He knows immediately that the demise of their relationship has something to do with that church she joined. She becomes unrecognizable and wants to change him into something he is not. His studies are the most important thing to him, so he did what any sane man would do, let her go.

Popular television personality Damisi Odinga, needs to end the fourth season of her show Becoming Ruth, with a bang. The trending topic in the country is the fairy-tale wedding of the heir to the Danjuma empire. The family has been shrouded in secrecy ever since the unknown sons resurfaced in the country last year. Coverage of the wedding weekend will give her show the boost it needs and seal its number one rating. No one can get an interview with the couple but she had a way in, her ex man, Jabir Danjuma. So what if he broke her heart and she hasn’t been able to get over him? This was kingdom business, right?

Years ago, Damisi left him without an explanation and now Jabir has her just where he wants her. Their encounter sets off a series of events that leave them both with fresh pain and hurt. Angry, they leave Abuja to their destinations. If they didn’t set eyes on each other again it would be too soon. But little did they know that fate has another thing planned. Will they stick it out long enough for the Potter to perfect their scars and pain for His purpose or will distance and time steal the day.

Thirty minutes later, Jabir was in the KTN lobby waiting for Damisi. He got curious stares from the receptionist and guard. He didn’t know whether it was because he looked like Kamal—someone they’d recognize—or because Damisi never received male visitors. He hoped it was the latter.
The space was decorated in light colors, and the walls were decorated with paintings or pictures of guests of their shows. He walked to the one the one that had Damisi in it. She was on the set of her show and looked beautiful. She had a microphone in her hand and was smiling. From the picture, he could see she loved what she did. His eyes saddened at what the scandal would do to her career. If they acted fast, she might have a chance of salvaging it, but she was too stubborn, and his approach wasn’t helping either. He had to get her to see reason.

“What are you doing here?” she whispered behind him.
Jabir turned around and marveled at how gorgeous she looked. He smiled inwardly.
“I figured you could use breakfast.” He handed her the smoothie and the box of pastries.
She took it from him slowly, her eyes softening with gratitude. “Thank you, but you shouldn’t be here.”

Jabir frowned. “Why? Expecting someone?”
She grabbed his wrist and tried to pull him to the corner. He resisted at first, but caved when he saw the plea in her eyes. “I really appreciate the breakfast, but I thought you were supposed to be on your way to Badagry. I really don’t need any rumors started.”
He lifted his brow. “Rumors? I’m not doing anything but making sure you’re fed. The baby needs to eat.”

She looked around in shocked horror. “Shhhh. Do you want to say it a little louder?” She rolled her eyes at him and he chuckled. “Jabir, please you can’t be here. In case you forgot, you look like one of the most recognizable Nigerian soccer players. I can’t do the rumor mill now.”
He wanted to dismiss her argument, but he was running late, and she was right. But then he had another idea. “Okay, I’ll leave on one condition.”

“Really?”
“Really.” He smirked.
Some people walked past them and did a double take. Damisi panicked. “What is it?”
“Have dinner with me when I get back.”

Damisi hesitated, then someone she knew walked over to say hello to them. By now, he could see the fury in her eyes. The daggers in them were aimed at him. He raised his eyebrow.

“I can’t believe you. Okay. Go,” she said hurriedly and turned away. He watched her go, but smiled when she walked back his way. “Thank you, and please drive safe.”

Yep. This new approach just might work. There was hope.

photo

Born in Akron, Ohio to Nigerian parents, Unoma Nwankwor is a multi-published author and 2015 winner of the Nigerian Writers’ Award for Best Faith Based Fiction. Her readers are in love with her unique story telling that fuses faith, romance and African spice, capturing the essence of her present home base; Atlanta and her Nigerian culture. She is also the COO ofKevStel Group LLC and resides in Atlanta with her husband and two kids.

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Write Stuff Author Spotlight — Silver Soldiers by Art Greenhaw

Hello. I’m Excited. This is one of my stops during the one week tour for Silver Soldiers by Art Greenhaw. This virtual book tour is organized by Write Now Literary Book Tours. This tour runs September 11 – 15, 2017.  Follow the tour here.  Book your own tour here WNL         

Genre: Christian Comic Book

Creator/editor/co-writer Art Greenhaw’s comic book roots run deep, Art having enjoyed a 20-year friendship with Stan Lee and a lifetime apprenticeship studying the works of his biggest comic book influences including Stan, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Al Hartley, and Ben Dunn. Art was a National Council of Teachers of English literary competition award winner and was the Optimist Club’s oratory contest winner. He has studied art at the Dallas Museum of Art and co-created and co-wrote stories and songs with pop culture icon Ed “Big Daddy” Roth, who proclaimed Art “The Voice of Rat Fink”. Art is a Grammy Award-Winning artist, producer, arranger, and mixing engineer and holds a Grammy record for most Grammy Nominations (eight) by a group in his particular category of Gospel-Christian music. Among the legendary artists who have recorded the songs and stories of Art include Ann-Margret, Engelbert Humperdinck, Trini Lopez, The Jordan aires, James Blackwood, The Light Crust Doughboys, The Ventures, the Southern Methodist University Mustang Band, and many more. It is Art’s lifetime mission to bring much-needed messages of morality and spirituality to today’s youth through his favorite literary medium: comic books. Art owns and manages the iconic #1 Texas legacy country band, The Light Crust Doughboys.

Truthmonger Comics, a creative entity whose mission is to bring the much-needed messages of morality and spirituality to today’s youth through the medium of comic books. Joining creator/editor/writer Art Greenhaw for this new line of Truthmonger Comics and its flagship title, God’s Silver Soldiers, are superstar comic book artist Ben Dunn, writer Rebecca Dunn, and graphic designer Josh Knight.

Truthmonger Comics is additionally inspired by Art’s friend of many years and biggest literary influence, Stan Lee.

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Write Stuff Author Spotlight — What I Gain Through His Pain with Nicole Benoit-Roy *EXCERPT*

Write Now Literary is pleased to announce What I Gain Through His Pain, by Nicole Benoit-Roy. Virtual Book Tour. August 1-31, 2018. @wnlbooktours @nicoleroy52
ASIN: B0746QSMG3

Genre: Christian Non-fiction

Nicole is currently pursuing her doctoral degree in educational leadership at Andrews University. She directs the Children Ministries Department at her church. She works as a special education teacher by day, a literature evangelist by night, and writes during the wee hours of the night. She enjoys reading and playing the piano (beginner). Nicole struggled with college writing, which lead her to eventually drop out. For this reason, one of her many goals in life is to become a best-selling author to the glory of God. Nicole and her husband, Roosevelt Roy, have been married since 1994, and are the proud parents of a handsome brown-eyed son, Nolan. They currently live in Brooklyn, New York.

In a society filled with easy Christianity and cheap grace, Nicole Benoit-Roy takes her relationship with Christ to a much deeper level. Since becoming a Christian, she has been learning about her newfound Savior, Jesus Christ. She is an educator who vows to be a student for as long as she lives. The more she learns about the cross of Christ, the more she realizes the importance of it in her life. As she meditates on His suffering, she concludes that His pain is the reason for every blessing in her life. In this book, “What I Gain Through His Pain,” she shares her story about the benefit of the cross as she expresses gratefulness for His pain.

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Excerpt

Something Fishy

Daddy practiced Voodoo, but even as a child I considered it foolish. During summer vacations in Haiti, the family expected my sister, my next younger brother and me to go to Lèogane. As the summer months drew to a close, my father lined up every child in the house to bathe us with a special Voodoo water made with crushed leaves.

As I got older (though not much older), I grew to detest the act and so I decided not to go on vacation anymore. I thought it ridiculous to allow myself to be bathed with stinky water. I never believed in the Voodoo stuff either. I had a good sense of who I was since early childhood. I knew God made me, and no evil could harm me (Now I know evil can’t touch me without His permission). That knowledge made me very bold and never afraid of any Voodoo stuff. My father had a special table with a white small washbasin and other Voodoo items on it. No one was supposed to touch them. However, on many occasions, I pretended to be cleaning just to touch and rearrange everything on that table. I held no fear. I just knew they lacked any authority over me. It’s weird though, no one told me that Voodoo held no potency. It was always a gut feeling. I was always very bold about expressing my belief every chance I got.

My father use to hold Voodoo ceremonies where kids in the house were expected to eat out of special wooden bowls. All that I shunned eventually. Because my brother Kesnel and sister Carol were twins, the ceremony held every year honored the twins (a Voodoo ritual) even though Carol died as a baby. Those were the kinds of things that made no sense to me, leading me to refuse to take part in them as soon as I grew old enough to say no. With me so hardheaded and strong-willed, no one in my family could force me to take part once I said no. Not even my father.

On one occasion, something terrible happened in my family, causing my father to be the focus of suspicion. I felt his pain afterward. He needed so much to have someone on his side. Unfortunately, not even his favorite little girl was willing to be that someone.

In desperation, one evening in Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti, he pulled me aside. In a private conversation, he explained his own version of the incident after he visited my mother in the U.S. in 1982 for the first time.

He said, “Nicole, I know you’re getting older. You can understand what I’m about to tell you.”

I was 14 years old then.

“When I went to New York,” he continued, “I swear I did not take your mother’s soiled panties. It’s only after I came back to Haiti I saw them in my suitcase. I swear I did not take them.”

I listened attentively, but my eyes stared at the cement floor as we sat on the edge of my bed.

“You believe me, don’t you, my girl.” He held onto my left arm as if begging me to say yes.

I’d heard the rumor that he wanted to use her underpants to hurt my mother through witchcraft so often that I’d already made up my mind of his guilt.

My father returned to Haiti finding himself in an awkward predicament. At that age, I was naïve and awfully honest.

“Well, I can’t say whether you did it or not. I wasn’t there. You’re the only one who knows if you did it or not,” I said.

Suddenly, the look he gave me told me he wanted another answer. His eyes turned red. His pain turned into hatred.

I knew then I was not his favorite little girl anymore and I would pay.

In retrospect, I realized I could have answered differently had I known better. I still feel his pain even now as I write about it.

As soon as my mother found out her panties were missing, she demanded that my father purchase a plane ticket and return them to her.

When he did, she burned them in his presence.

My father continued to make his regular weekly visits from Lèogâne bringing us fresh produce every time. Our relationship was never the same, however. At times, I’d purposely stayed away to avoid seeing him altogether, not showing up until after he left. He was the enemy of the family. He knew it. That made him very uncomfortable and angry.

During one of his visits, he threatened to beat me because I did not greet him. Of course I put up a fight. He tried to pin me to the ground. I escaped from his grip and ran to a nearby stony hill. I picked up a stone and made the motion to throw it at him, but an invisible power stopped me. I knew Who kept me from flinging the stone, and I’m glad He did. Deep down inside I really loved my father. I believed that he gave me so much love and attention that he made it possible to never feel insecure about myself.

During my college years at Stony Brook University in New York, our father-daughter relationship remained broken. I recall lying on the bed in my dorm room reminiscing about my childhood. My entire family lived in the U.S. by then. My mom and dad separated shortly after the panties incident, although they waited to divorce until eleven years later. I finally realized the pain my father must have gone through to have his whole family against him, and the pain he continued to feel every time he and I met.

“Look at Nicole, the daughter I loved so much. Now, she can’t even talk to me,” he sometimes said.

At that time, we were on greeting terms. As I empathized with my father, I decided to put an end to our broken relationship. I picked up the phone.

“Hello,” he said.

“Hi, daddy, how are you?” It felt uncomfortable saying “daddy” but I also realized that doing the right thing was never easy.

“Who’s this?” he asked.

“This is Nicole,” I said. “I just call to tell you that I love you. Bye.”

“Ok,” he said.

I hung up the phone, feeling a burden lift from my chest.

For the first time I began to understand the power of forgiveness. I still had a long way to go.

Our relationship continued to improve after that phone call. My father is now ninety-two years old, and I love him as if nothing ever happened between us.

The Bible says in Deuteronomy 5:16, “Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD your God has commanded you.” (NLT). I desire to obey God’s Word. Through this experience, I learned that making mistakes is what we (humans) specialize in the most. What’s essential is that we learn from them.

Write Stuff Author Spotlight — 40 Days of Healing by Danyelle Scroggins

Write Now Literary is pleased to announce The Book Tour for 40 Days of Healing by Danyelle Scroggins. July 27, 2017 

Publication Date: June 12, 2017

Genre: Inspirational

ASIN: B072MS2TLR
ISBN-10: 154806775X
ISBN-13: 978-1548067755

 

40 Days Of Healing takes the reader through 40 days of fasting in hopes of being delivered from the “IT” that has caused separation between them and God, and gives them the opportunity to journal their most personal prayers, thoughts, and intentions.



40 Days Of Healing is also a complete guide to 40 days of fasting and spiritual renewal. It is an opportunity for mind renewal in your mind, body, and spirit. It is saturated with wonderful scriptures to help usher you into your healing.

Pastor/ Author Danyelle is the Senior Pastor of New Vessels Ministries North in Shreveport, Louisiana. She studied Theology at Louisiana Baptist University, has a Psychology Degree from the University of Phoenix, an Interdisciplinary Degree in Psychology /Biblical Studies from Liberty University, and is presently working on a Master’s in Religious Education from the Liberty University. Pastor Danyelle owns Divinely Sown Publishing LLC and is the author of both Christian fiction and non-fiction books. She is the wife of Pastor Reynard Scroggins Sr., the mother of three by birth and two additional by marriage.




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Write Stuff Author Spotlight Life & Love by Taneisha Grace LaGrant

WriteNow Literary is pleased to announce Life & Love, by Taneisha Grace LaGrant Virtual Book Tour. June 26-30, 2017.
Print Length: 158 pages
Publication Date: April 14, 2017
ASIN: B06XGPB495

Genre: Poetry

Love is a journey. Step 1. Fall in love. Step 2. Experience conflict. Step 3. Move on and heal or heal together. Is love really like this formula though? It all seems so simple.

This volume of poetry is broken up into similar sections where Taneisha LaGrant takes you on the journey of falling in love, fighting to stay in love and learning the most important discovery of it all. The key to what’s missing can’t be found in everyone else but it can be found in this volume of poetry. Stay tuned until the end and you may discover the most important aspect of love there ever was to be discovered.


Taneisha LaGrant is a poet from Gretna, Florida. She is the author of Life & Love Volume I (April, 2017) and is currently working on her novel The 6th Month Vow. Taneisha has a Bachelor’s degree in English and is currently pursuing her Masters in English with a concentration in Creative Writing. Taneisha resides in Washington with her husband and two children.

Taneisha LaGrant is a poet from Gretna, Florida. She is the author of Life & Love Volume I (April, 2017) and is currently working on her novel The 6th Month Vow. Taneisha has a Bachelor’s degree in English and is currently pursuing her Masters in English with a concentration in Creative Writing. Taneisha resides in Washington with her husband and two children.


Section I: In Love Love is staying true to who you are, yet having the ability to give to someone else. It’s not because they forced you to but because you desire to serve them, and they desire to serve you. The submission between two equal parties, knowing each other’s needs along with the desire to grow closer together, while still maintaining unique individual identities. Love is becoming one and still maintaining a sense of self with no jealousy or envy of the other person. Life & Love Volume I.





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Write Stuff Author Spotlight — Until Ray by Cheryl Robinson & EXCERPT

Write Now Literary is pleased to announce Until Ray Virtual Book Tour, with author Cheryl Robinson. June 19- July 14, 2017. 

Releasing “free” June 27 at select ebook retailers. 


Genre: Adult Fiction, Contemporary

About The Author

Cheryl currently resides in the Sunshine State with plans to return to her hometown Detroit shortly. For the past fifteen years, she has been busy writing contemporary women’s fiction. While writing is her first love, making delicious green smoothies is easily her second. She also enjoys spoiling her miniature Schnauzer and whipping up healthy meals from recipes she finds online.

About The Book

Two people in the same city but worlds apart.

Until Ray is an unconventional love story of how two young people transitioning into adulthood find each other and develop a bond that will be tested through three decades.

RAY IS LOST …
He lives in northwest Detroit with his mother. When he’s not at home, he’s either at the mall selling women’s shoes or in the club. In both places, he’s focused on one thing—picking up women. Only now he’s ready to make a change but isn’t sure how to do it.

THEN SARITA ARRIVES …
At twenty-four, she has an MBA, is a CPA, and works in upper-level management at GM. But all that success comes at a cost: she’s lonely and craves the one thing she’s never had—attention from men.
Dive into a love story filled with soul-searching drama told from two very different perspectives. Until Ray, the first book of a trilogy, is set in the mid-eighties in Detroit, where the author was born and raised.



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Facebook Contest # 1
Link to contest Facebook
Blog Contest # 2

Link to blog contest Meet the Characters Giveaway 
Tour hosted by Write Now Literary Book Tours www.wnlbooktours.com

June 1986

 

RAY

 “If it isn’t Raymond Saint. What’s up, man?” I hear a familiar voice coming from behind me as I pose in front of a floor-length mirror in the women’s shoe department at Hudson’s admiring the suit I just got out of the layaway at Man-oh-Man. I have two more to get out next payday.

Joseph Morris steps into my view, and I turn to face him. “Joe, man, what’s up? I haven’t seen you since we graduated.” We share a brotherly handshake. “How’ve you been?”

“Couldn’t be better, honestly. Life is real good. I’ve been in town for about a week, visiting family. I’m actually flying back tomorrow. I was just picking up a few things before I go.”

“You moved out of state?”

“Yeah, after I graduated from U of M. I’m starting my second year of law school at Stanford.”

I’m pretty sure Joe’s father is an attorney or a doctor, one of the two.

“Man, good to hear that.” Joe was part of the crowd I hung with at Cass Tech. I’ve been out of high school since 1980. Six years now. Damn, that’s a long time to still be doing nothing.

“I see you’re still staying sharp.” Joe brushes my lapel.

“Trying to.”

“So, man, what are you doing these days?”

“You know, the usual. Right now I’m just waiting for my girl.”

He nods. “Where did you end up going to school? It’s hard to keep up with everybody. Cass is so big, and we knew everybody, didn’t we?”

I place one finger up to signal for Joe to wait, and then I unclip my pager. “This is my girl paging me right now actually. I need to find her.” I’ve got to get rid of him before he finds out the truth and every Cass Tech alumni knows that the guy voted most likely to succeed is now selling shoes. Why am I in denial? I’m sure most of them already know.

“Really, that’s cool. I was on my way out. I got what I came for.” Joe raises a Hudson’s shopping bag.

“Ray,” I hear the forceful voice of a female. I turn to see Cynthia Meyers. This has the potential to get real ugly, real fast.

“What are you doing here?” My eyes lock on Cynthia, and Joe disappears— even though he’s still standing here.

“It’s a mall, not your house. I don’t need an invite.”

“You need one if you’re coming to talk to me. What do you want?”

“Why did you stop calling me and stop taking my calls?”

“Well, man, ah, it was good seeing you,” Joe says. “I’ll let you handle your little situation.”

“Little situation?” Cynthia eyeballs Joe. “I’m a lot more than that.”

Joe nods at me and quickly leaves.

“Well, why haven’t you called me?” Cynthia asks again.

“I’ve been busy.” I work my way between two of the tall clearance racks, seeking some privacy. Luckily, my manager won’t be in today. But there are three female customers browsing.

“Busy doing what? Selling shoes?” Cynthia flips one of the size-seven pumps off the rack. “Hudson’s doesn’t stay open twenty-four hours, seven days a week.”

“Please tell me why you’re here.”

“Why I’m here?” Cynthia snaps. “Because I want you to tell me why you stopped calling me.”

“Do we have to talk about this here? I’m working.”

“You won’t talk to me any other time, so yeah—we do have to talk about it here. Unless you’re ready for me to act a complete fool at your job. If I’d known you were going to act this way after we had sex, I never would’ve slept with you.”

I shake my head as I stare at her. S.omeone so pretty acting so ugly“I don’t believe that, ” I say.

“I don’t know why not!” she shouts.

“Please lower your voice,” I whisper and watch two customers walk out of the department, leaving only one woman trying on shoes. “Because you had sex with me and didn’t even know me. That’s why.”

“So?” Cynthia has a hand on her hips.

“So? All you had was my first name and telephone number scribbled on the back of an Olga’s receipt.”

SARITA

 The walls in my bedroom are still pink even though I’ve outgrown the color. They were beige when my parents first moved here in 1962. Back then, Palmer Woods only had a few black families. It’s comprised of 295 colonial and Tudor revival homes in a now-historic district. The year they moved to Palmer Woods was the same year  I was born. As a kid, I always wanted this room. After all, it has a a sun balcony, chandelier, two walk-in closets, a built-in vanity, and a private bathroom with separate bathtub and shower. But being younger, I had to settle for the smaller yellow bedroom on the opposite end of this floor until Sunniva left for Harvard in 1976, which was also my freshman year at Our Lady of Mercy High School. But now it’s no longer about this room. I’ve been back from DC for two years, and it’s time for me to reclaim my independence. I felt like more of an adult in college. I lived in an off-campus apartment with my best friend, Sharon, for all but my freshman year when I lived in the dorm, which is where I met Sharon. She was assigned as my roommate. Sharon was married back then and still is today. She got married the summer before we started at Georgetown. She’s a grown woman and living as one, while I’m in a pink room. It’s time for me to move.

Dr. Emerson is here. It’s just after ten in the morning, but he’s come to my parents’ home to pick me up for a date—my first one. Not just with him, but my first one, period. I suppose I shouldn’t be nervous since I’ve known Dr. Emerson my entire life. I also know how most doctors are—I’ll call him Dr. Emerson unless he tells me otherwise.

I hear him downstairs talking with my parents about the membership-only Detroit Golf Club that’s across Seven Mile Road, minutes from our home. They’ve finally integrated, but my daddy isn’t interested in joining. He’ll stick to golfing his way through the various courses in southeastern Michigan. I’m not surprised Dr. Emerson golfs. He probably skies too. It matches his upbringing.

I’m not ready, which is why I’m still sitting on my canopy bed with the sheer white curtains drawn meditating on 1 Corinthians 13:2–6, which are my favorite verses to reflect on. I’m so ready for love, but not any old something—true love. I scan the highlighted verses:

If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

 

When I finish meditating, I set my Bible on my nightstand and rest my rosary on top of it.

My gray Norma Kamali cotton shirt dress—a different one than the one I wore when the landscaper was over yesterday—is laid across the upholstered bench at the foot of the bed. The heels of my sling-back pumps kiss on the hardwood floor in front of the entrance to my bathroom.

Would it be rude if I never made my way downstairs? My mother wouldn’t allow that. This is her dream for me. I climb through the curtains, slip on my dress, and then step inside the closet and stare at my three favorite Coach purses: the Dinky, the Slim Satchel, and the Stewardess. I can’t decide which one to take. I love each for different reasons. And I can’t narrow it down by color because all three are black. Coach doesn’t have a bunch of colors to choose from to begin with, and if I’m spending that much on a purse, I want to make sure I use it often. I’m not like my mother. Coach isn’t high-end enough for her. She prefers Gucci and Louis Vuitton. But I’ll take black, glove-tanned cowhide leather over some initials on canvas any day. Besides, black goes with everything.

“Sarita, Dr. Emerson is waiting for you downstairs,” my mother says as she enters my room.

“I know, Mother.” My hand inches in the direction of my Dinky, which is inside its own little white square of the built-in purse display.

“Well, if you know, what’s taking you so long? Not that we don’t enjoy talking to him because, of course, we do. He’s such an intelligent young man, and his parents are dear friends of ours, as you know. He likes you, Sarita, and he’s not the play type. He’s serious. He’s looking for a wife.”

“I understand, Mother.”

“What do you understand? Do you understand I’d like for you to smile at Dr. Emerson, show those great teeth, stay engaged in his conversation? He’s a very rational man.”

“Mother, I’m not stupid. I went to college. I have two degrees.” I start transferring the contents of my Stewardess into the Dinky. It can’t fit nearly as much, but all I really need are some bobby pins and a small comb in case my updo comes undone; my Fashion Fair Lip Moisturizer, my slim wallet, and my keys.

“I never implied you were stupid, Sarita. I know you’re very intelligent. I just understand how you are, and I know that you feel that once you leave work, it’s over, but everyone doesn’t feel that way. Dr. Emerson is passionate about his work, so please act as if you’re interested. Do you remember everything that I taught you about dealing with men of his stature?”

I nod. “Yes, Mother.” I’ve been around men of his stature my entire life. My daddy is a man of his stature.

“Good, because if you do exactly what I’ve taught you over the years, you will be married to Dr. Emerson by next spring.”

I sigh but not loud enough for my mother to hear. Married by next spring? What is my mother talking about? She told me that Mrs. Emerson asked if I was in a relationship and asked if it were okay if her son called me. How did we get from that to marriage? Because he’s a doctor and my mother is desperate for me to land one? But at least I’m no longer nervous. I’m ready for this date to start. Anything to get me away from my mother.

“Remember, this is not a date. This is an introduction over brunch, that’s it, so don’t make more out of it than it is.”

“I know, Mother.”

“You look beautiful, Sarita.”

“Thank you, Mother.”

“You look like the type of woman a man marries. Enjoy yourself. I know that you will.” She smiles proudly, as if her dream for me will soon be realized.