Brook Stephenson

Brook Stephenson photo Mourns the Loss of Brook Stephenson
(February 12, 1974 — August 8, 2015)

…just last week Brook was at the Corridor Gallery hosting a reading of work created at his Rhode Island Writers Colony…me, Brook, Michael A. Gonzales and a few others were working on pseudo biographies for a book of African American vintage nudes from the 50’s and 40’s with the working title ‘would u look at ur grandma’…my man was kind loving gentle and genuine the type of brother that is from the hood that the media doesn’t talk about..dedicated to community the arts and his friends. Brook suddenly passed away last night…he was healthy vibrant and happy with his success. …Mike told me he just finished his novel. I am more than sad…I’ve lost a good friend but more importantly we have lost a real powerful example of a black man… the kinda guy that wished everybody a good morning w a smile…u will be greatly missed my brother.” —Danny Simmons

Look. Book publishing is a small, small industry. Everybody knows everybody else. When you talk about *black* people in publishing, the numbers are even smaller. So when I tell you that the sudden passing of Brook Stephenson this weekend has us on our collective knees with grief, I mean it. What a wonderful person he was. A great teacher, advisor and writer. A gifted thinker, lover of literature and all-around good man. Brook had just finished his novel, too. This is heartbreaking.” —Rakia Clark

A Celebration for Brook!

Was held, Thursday, August 13, from 6:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. at McNally Jackson Books in New York City

Brook StephensonAs we cope with the unbelievable news of Brook’s passing, let’s get together to seek comfort, tell stories, cry and hopefully laugh a little in our boy’s honor. The location, Parlor, is a private club that Brook’s Morehouse brethren Sekou Writes has been able to secure. So there will be no drama "at the door." Come as you are. Bring a Brook anecdote with you. And spread the word among Brook’s circle of friends.

We’re planning to drink Brook’s favorite cocktail (Dark & Stormy) in his honor so, if you’re able, please bring dark rum, ginger beer or both.

For those of you who can’t make this informal gathering but have expressed a desire to vibe with us, Sekou is setting up a Periscope live feed. His handle is @SekouWrites, hashtag #RestInPowerBrook.

Note: This is not the memorial. That’ll come later, arranged by Brook’s family. What we’re doing this Thursday is getting Brook’s NYC friends together so that we can lean on each other and feel a little less alone in this.  Hosted by Rakia Clark, Sekou, and Stacey Barney

Brook Stephenson was director of Literature and Development at The Clever Agency, “a branding company bent on changing the world for the better one fun project at a time. Home of Clever NYC and The Intercontinentalist.”

In 2014 Brook launched the Rhode Island Writers Colony. He described it best; “I didn’t reinvent anything but gave access to the process I underwent in the Hudson Valley with 6 artists across the genres of photography, installation graphic design/graffiti, and theater to writers of color. An active ongoing process, both writers cherished time and space to refine and expand works in progress. The Colony is not a workshop. It’s time and space with others writers of color to create work contributing to the African-American/African Diaspora literary canon.”

Brook recently completed his first novel, The Maturation of Moses Jones.

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for? (from

100 Years from now I want to be remembered for the books I write. I want to be remembered for the book I am writing now, The Maturation of Moses Jones, and the two books that will follow in a trilogy. It’s about the 1990’s and about the early 21st Century and just life…”
—Brook Stephenson

Brook Stephenson and friends and the 2014 Black Pack Party
Sekou (writer), Rakia Clark (editor), Brook Stephenson, Marcia Wilson (photographer), Troy Johnson (Founder,, Suzanne Bennett at the 2013 Black Pack Party.

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