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  1. Well... it is another Friday, another day to love, to Oxum, Oshun, Freya, or Venus, another day to Kizomba! SOmetimes, you just dance to have fun and we see that in Irina dancing side José N'dongala, I love how the camera moved when he tried a trick. enjoy a free read https://www.kobo.com/ebook/the-nyotenda
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  2. Cynique When it came to the Covid vaccine, the Government sure missed an opportunity to corral black people into the fold. As it is, a sizable number of black anti-vaxxers have become strange bedfellows with the Retrumpicans. These 2 factions of the conspiracy theory community are now united by a common foe: the ubiquitous "they", a deep state government out to control the population by making them dependent on the output of Big Pharma. What could Big Brother have done to motivate these pesky black resistors, so sure of their omniscience? All Bruh had to do was announce that the vaccine would only be available to white people because their numbers were dwindling due to abortions cutting their birth rate. White skeptics would've jumped at the chance to break ranks and join the others in discriminate against those black malcontents always bitching and whining. As for the bitchers and whiners... Once a "whites only" decree was issued, black America would have exploded than a gender reveal rocket! Blue skies would've turned gray. Everywhere, all over the country black mobs would've taken to the streets; protestors protesting, demonstrators demonstrating, looters looting, black lives matter mattering. Voices yelling "We Want The Shot!" would've been bellowing as sign carriers dodged bullets from drive-by shooters. "Down With Racism" chants would've added to the clamor. Calls to impeach Biden would've been resounding throughout the halls of Congress! Chaos would've reigned. Then, under pressure from black voters, the Government would've rescinded this restriction, scoring a victory for equality. Black resentment would've simmered down and all would've ended up well. (Except the relatively small number of those ending up sick.) Later, in a secret location, the cabal of evil men running the show would be giving each other high-5s, congratulating themselves on the success of their plot to save the country from itself. Fast forward. Minister Louis Farrakhan or Scientist Neil DeGrasse Tyson? Take your choice. Incidentally, my arm feels fine.
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  3. Afro Latinx children's books are still too rare. These four authors are trying to change that Written by CNN Style Staff A vivid homage to the graffitied streets of the Boogie Down Bronx and an interstellar quest for the perfect natural hair style are part of a new wave of picture books celebrating Afro Latinx culture and characters, in an industry where these stories are still few and far between. "I want to show kids of diverse backgrounds that they can go on fantastical adventures, too," said New York-based illustrator and toy designer Yesenia Moises, author of "Stella's Stellar Hair." She noted that in children's media, stories featuring protagonists of color are often about overcoming struggle, or are "hyper-focused" on identity and race. "I want to step away from that for a moment to be able to show that ... their worlds can be vibrant and full of color." Having grown up without picture books that reflected their own experiences, the Latinx authors and illustrators featured below are crafting and sharing those stories themselves, with colorful vivid imagery, prose and verse. Here, four authors speak about their storytelling philosophies, and why kids need to see themselves in the pages of the stories they read. Eric Velasquez Eric Velasquez is an Afro Puerto Rican illustrator, author and educator. He has illustrated more than 30 books and has authored four, including "Octopus Stew," about a boy named Ramsey who must save his grandmother from the gargantuan octopus she's cooking. "Octopus Stew" was inspired by the tall tales of Velasquez's father. Credit: Eric Velasquez/Courtesy of Holiday House Publishing My family comes from a strong oral storytelling tradition; we would gather together to share and listen after nights of dinner and music, and so it was something that I wanted to be part of. My book "Octopus Stew'' is essentially a tribute to that oral tradition. Whenever my dad would come over and cook for my friends and me, he would inevitably say, "Did Eric tell you about the day I rescued him and his grandma from the giant octopus?" Every single one of my friends knows that story because of him, and over the years, it just grew like a tall tale. Grandmothers are central to many of my stories. I can trace my own career back to the summers I spent sketching in my grandmother's living room in Spanish Harlem, surrounded by music. In "Grandma's Records," Velasquez recalls the memories from his own childhood that made him understand that 'heroes' aren't just White. Credit: Eric Velasquez/Bloomsbury Children's Books Those summers inspired my book "Grandma's Records," and also taught me the importance of having heroes who look like us. I remember marveling at the musicians who would visit when I was young, including Rafael Cortijo, the prime architect of Puerto Rican salsa. When he came by, my grandmother told me only to refer to him as "maestro." "That man is a genius," she said, "and he deserves to be treated with respect." In school, when we learned that Beethoven was a musical genius, I remember thinking, "I know a genius too! He loves rice with beans and roast pork, and he even entertains us with music after dinner." I didn't feel there was a disconnect between the concept of "genius" and what I saw around me. But over time, I realized other kids struggled to do the same; at art school, when they pictured "heroes" they would never draw men or women of color. That's when I started to realize how important representation is. When you grow up with examples of diverse heroes, it affects your imagination. You start to believe that you can be part of this creative world, and I think that's very important. Yesenia Moises Yesenia Moises is an Afro Dominican toy designer and illustrator. She is the author of "Stella's Stellar Hair," a book about a young Black girl with natural hair who travels the solar system in search of hairstyles. "Stella's Stella Hair" is about owning your natural hair, inspired by Moises' own hair journey. Credit: Yesenia Moises When it comes to my hair, I spent most of my life trying to fit the mold of Eurocentric beauty standards by chemically relaxing my hair. Growing up, my mom, a fair-skinned Latina woman with the loose waves a lot of people aim for -- not at all like mine -- would always comment on how thick or unruly it is, or how it tangles itself. It was only after I started letting my hair grow out in its full, natural glory that I grew to love it, but even then I realized that many kids today are still made to feel bad about their hair. So I created "Stella's Stellar Hair" to celebrate the variety and creativity of Black hair across the African diaspora. Stella is aided on her intergalatic quest by cosmic aunties, who each have a hairstyle for her. Credit: Yesenia Moises The whole concept of having aunties from the different planets came from one Black hair trade show I attended, which was full of older Black women with amazing natural hairstyles that showed their personalities. And I'd never seen that before. I was so used to making sure that my hair was as flat as possible, but here were all these older women who were just proud of the hair that grew out of their scalp. It really inspired me to show just how versatile and beautiful Black hair can be. I think it's really important for young readers to feel seen more than anything else. As a dark-skinned Afro Latina, it wasn't until 2018, when I saw Miles Morales become Spider-Man in "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse," that I saw someone with my background represented in the media I watch. I really loved how the director made a choice to exclude English subtitles for the conversations Miles had with his mother. When you add subtitles, it makes the experience feel foreign; but in their household, it was natural -- just like it is in mine. That really floored me. Margarita Engle Margarita Engle is a poet and author whose works celebrate her Cuban heritage. Her book "Drum Dream Girl," illustrated by Rafael López, is inspired by the true story of a young Chinese Afro Cuban girl who became a drummer for Cuba's first all-female jazz band. "Drum Dream Girl," written by Engle and illustrated by Rafael López, tells the journey of a girl in Cuba who pursues her love of drums. Credit: Margarita Engle/Clarion Books I was born and raised in Los Angeles, but developed a deep attachment to Cuba, where my mother is from. We would go back in the summers to visit the extended family, but we were cut off from them because of travel restrictions after the missile crisis. When I was finally able to go back as an adult in 1991, I found that I wanted to write about the experience. I know that, all of a sudden, we're not supposed to hyphenate things anymore in our writing. But I felt like I lived on that hyphen, and the compound word "Cuban-American." It was a bridge and an abyss at the same time; by the time I was a teenager, it felt like it was easier for a US citizen to walk on the moon than to visit relatives in Cuba. Music is a recurring theme in my books. My picture book "Drum Dream Girl" is based on the life of Chinese Afro Cuban girl Millo Castro Zaldarriaga, who played the drums in Cuba when it was forbidden to girls. The story is a real tale of perserverence in a dreamlike setting. Credit: Margarita Engle/Clarion Books I read the memoirs of her older sister and there were these amazing photographs of this all-girl band -- the first of its kind. In the 1930s, most of the jazz bands had been men, and here was one made up entirely of sisters. And the youngest was a 10-year-old girl who wanted to play the drums. Even today, in certain cultural traditions that come from West African religion, women in Cuba have to fight for the right to play certain types of drums. But in Millo's case, for entertainment, she really opened that door. The band became very successful, and everybody loved her drumming, so, after a while, many other women drummers followed. I was inspired by her courage and her perseverance. When I talk to children about that book, I ask the boys, 'How would you feel if society said you couldn't drive monster trucks, or only girls could motorcycle race?' And all the boys immediately give up their right to be the only one to do something. They instinctively understand that this isn't fair. Charles Esperanza Charles Esperanza is an Afro Puerto Rican illustrator and author whose new book, "Boogie Boogie Y'all," published this summer. The book is a brightly colored depiction of his home borough of the Bronx, as well as a tribute to graffiti. "Boogie Boogie, Y'all" celebrates the Bronx as a colorful cultural hub. Credit: CG Esperanza I'm interested in telling stories and taking something about our culture -- as a Black and Latino person, and as a Bronx resident -- and de-stigmatizing it. What inspired "Boogie Boogie, Y'all" was an awesome graffiti piece outside of the community center where I teach. I took a photo of it to show to my students; it turns out none of them has seen it before. I said, "Y'all don't really look around and take in all of the awesome things that are on the street." I've asked my students what they've heard about graffiti and a lot of the answers were recycled from decades ago: It's gang symbols; it's vandalism. I wanted to give them another perspective about it; I pay homage to a lot of contemporary street artists in the book like "Gully" and "Modus," who can be seen all over the Bronx and the rest of New York City. They've seen the book and have expressed excitement about it. Esperanza wrote and illustrated the book after a conversation with his students about noticing what's in front of the them on the streets of their home borough. Credit: CG Esperanza I think kids need to be able to see themselves in the books that they read, and they need to be able to see themselves in the art they look at. As a teacher, I notice many of my Black and Brown students create White characters. Instead of preaching to them that they should use people of color, I show them examples of amazing Black characters, created by artists like Yesenia Moises, LeSean Thomas or Geneva Bowers to inspire them. I get a lot of inspiration just walking around the Bronx, and I definitely wanted to capture that. I love the borough for its grittiness and personality. We are known for our cultural contributions through hip-hop, but we have so much more in food, fashion, art and music that's waiting to be shared with the world. All of our communities -- old and new -- are adding their vibrant tag to the wall that is the Bronx. When I was first trying to get into the business. I heard some really wild things about why publishers wouldn't have a Black child as the protagonist. I remember one editor told me that for picture books, they would rather have an animal like a panda or something as a main character, because every kid could relate to that. I was blown away, realizing that the underrepresentation was intentional this whole time. So I'm glad that we have so many artists now that are coming in and knocking down the door and doing awesome things. Each author's personal statement was edited for length and clarity by a member of the CNN Style team. https://www.cnn.com/style/article/afro-latinx-childrens-books-hyphenated/index.html?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Lit Hub Daily: August 27%2C 2021&utm_term=lithub_master_list Jess Bergman/August 11, 2021 The Uncomfortable Rise of the Instagram Novel Beth Morgan’s “A Touch of Jen” is the latest work to reckon with a social media–fueled obsession. https://newrepublic.com/article/163238/uncomfortable-rise-instagram-novel-touch-jen-beth-morgan?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Lit Hub Daily: August 13, 2021&utm_term=lithub_master_list A sudden price change for Amanda Gorman’s book shocked booksellers. https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/bookselling/article/87229-gorman-book-s-price-hike-startles-booksellers.html Writers notes: the record label remixing novels into music https://www.theguardian.com/books/2021/aug/27/writers-notes-the-record-labels-remixing-novels-into-music-bibliotapes REFERRAL- New Environmental Canon, An LGBT+ Picture Book, and Women in Horror: This Week in Book News https://kobowritinglife.com/2021/08/27/new-environmental-canon-an-lgbt-picture-book-and-women-in-horror-this-week-in-book-news/
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  4. https://twitter.com/Hardcore888/status/1437089180090314752?s=04
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  5. Sunday Business Sermon: Negotiation (Ask for More) Jane has been negotiating contracts as an editor and freelancer for 15 years. She shares easy-to-apply tips and questions for your next negotiation, plus explains the basics of how book and magazine contracts work.
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  6. Enjoy Let's Groove together this holiday season and all year long. Brought to you by VisitDetroit.com Follow-us on Facebook to stay up to date on all things Detroit! https://www.facebook.com/VisitDetroit *** ONE NATION UNDER A GROOVE (Detroit’s Tribute to The Funk) Original song by Funkadelic was released in1978 by Warner Bros. Songwriters: George Clinton Jr., Walter Morrison and Garry Shider. Published by Bridgeport Music, Inc. BMI Performed by The Detroit Academy of Arts & Sciences Choir ft. King Bethel and Anaiya Hall DAAS choir includes: Sincere Austin, Ireland Bradley, Kyndall Bouldin, Drie Boyd, Alonzo Dock, Aniya Elkins, Taylor Glover, Morgann Hicks, Ari'Onah Jackson, Precious Jackson, Jeremiah Johnson, Tania Kato, Lucinda Liggions, Brionna Mahone, DeShawn Marks, Akeylah Mason, Charles McLean, Lillyan Orr-Mercer, Jessie Miller, Joslyn Mosley, Marcus Parker, Brandon Payton, Aja Ross, Aianya Smith, Ashanti Wade, Alanah Wingfield, Rian Woods Choir Direction by Angela Kee Dr. Ras Mikey C, Director of Choreography Also featuring: Chi Amen-Ra, Percussion Efe Bes, Percussion Duminie Deporres, Guitar Amp Fiddler, Synthesizer Larry Fratangelo, Percussion LaShawn D. Gary, Keys & Key Bass Eric “Rain Man” Gaston, Drums Video presented by VisitDetroit.Com and the Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau Executive producer, director and editor, Bill Bowen, Octane Design Co-produced by Mike Ellison, AddisDetroit Song produced and arranged by Mike Ellison and LaShawn D. Gary Spoken word written by Mike Ellison Recorded at the Tempermill in Ferndale, MI Sound engineers Tony Hamera and Jake Shives Mixed by Carlos Gunn, Masterpiece Sound Studios Mastered by Danny Leake, Urban Guerrilla Engineers Directors of photography: Andrew Stefanik, Iron Coast and Myron Watkins II Cameras: Ed Knight and Scott West It takes a village. Thanks to these people for their help. All the parents of these beautiful children for allowing their kids to be at the various locations for filming. Talent coordination by Ann Delisi, AddisDetroit Interpretive performer, Dr. Ras Mikey C Appearance by B-Boy, Haleem “Stringz” Rasul Armen Boladian, Bridgeport Music, Inc. Scott L. Guy, The Riviera Group Management Crystal McMahon, DMCVB PM, Christine Ribusovski, Octane Design And anyone we may have missed : ) Special thanks to these locations/organizations: Capoeira Mandinga Detroit Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History Detroit Institute of Art Downtown Detroit Partnership (Capitol Park and Cadillac Square) Eastern Market Guardian Building Great Lakes Crossing Outlets The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation (Rosa Parks bus) The Majestic Theatre MOCAD Motown Museum Narrow Way Cafe QLINE The Riverfront Conservancy Royal Transportation Co. Yum Village Image of George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic performing in Waterfront Park, Louisville, Kentucky on July 4th, 2008 by JMSchneid. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. See why you can't stop Detroit at VisitDetroit.com #ItsGoTimeDetroit
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  7. Discover Hidden Narratives: The largest collection of African Comics in the World! The Kugali Comic Club grants you access to the largest collection of African comics in the world, as well as new chapters of ongoing comics every other day. For this first season, you get a new chapter of Versus every Monday, new chapter of Olwatuuka every Wednesday and new chapter of Nani every Friday. Three issues of Mill City's Finest will round up season one in Septmeber. Season two kicks off after a two week break, so there's a lot more content to come! https://kugali.com/pages/free-comics https://kugali.com/pages/read-free-comics https://kugali.com/pages/read-free-comics-3 Video
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  8. This week on the podcast we are joined by Lateefah Zawistowski to discuss all things OverDrive. As an account manager for OverDrive, Lateefah gives us the inside look at how OverDrive works, how authors can add and market their books on OverDrive, and how libraries utilize the service. She also shares some advice on pricing your books for libraries, what trends she’s currently seeing in library sales, and she discusses the impact of the pandemic on libraries. Lateefah tells us about her role as account manager at OverDrive and why she believes publishers and indie authors alike should consider opting their books into OverDrive She discusses the borrowing habits of readers and how they change based on the genre, and she tells us why the library is such a great tool for discovery, especially for backlist and midlist titles Lateefah explains how libraries purchase books from OverDrive, the multiple purchasing models available to authors and libraries, what time of year libraries are most likely to be purchasing books, and she gives some advice on how to price your eBook for libraries She gives us her predictictions for library trends in 2021 and beyond, and explains why the surge of new library users at the beginning of the pandemic, while great, isn’t necessarily enough to support local libraries Lateefah discusses OverDrive promotions and she explains how merchandising is essential to discoverability on OverDrive She explains the global reach of OverDrive and how many different markets they’re available to, from public libraries to education to corporations, and she discusses the different language markets outside of English Language books Lateefah talks to us about current trends in library sales, what books have sold the best during the pandemic, and she explains why genre fiction is having a big moment right now LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW OR READ THE TRANSCRIPT USING THE ARTICLE BELOW KWL - 245 - Optimizing OverDrive with Lateefah Zawistowski - Kobo Writing Life Happy Audiobook Month! What better way to celebrate than by uploading your audiobooks directly to Kobo! Especially because it’s incredibly easy to do. How easy, you ask? You can upload your audiobook in only ten steps (and one of those steps is signing into your account)! Here’s how: Log into your Kobo Writing Life account here: https://www.kobo.com/writinglife Select the Audiobooks tab on your dashboard. Don’t see the audiobook tab? Send us an email at writinglife@kobo.com and we can activate it for you! Click “Create new Audiobook”. Once on the audiobook uploading page, you can start inputting your audiobook information. You will first be asked to describe your audiobook. This includes: the title and subtitle (remember to only include text that appears on your book’s cover!), the series name and number if your book is part of a series, the contributors including your narrator, your synopsis, publisher name and imprint, your publication date and release date, your ISBN (this must be a unique ISBN and cannot be the same as your eBook or print book!), and finally the language of your audiobook and whether it’s abridged or unabridged. You will then be required to enter the categories for your title. These categories will determine how your audiobook is labelled and categorized in the Kobo Store. We recommend selecting three categories for each book to ensure that customers who are browsing through our store have a better chance of finding your titles. Next, you will need to upload your cover image. We accept cover images in .png, .jpg and .jpeg file formats. We recommend the minimum size of audiobook cover images be at least 600px by 600px. Covers for audiobooks should be square; if they are not, they will be automatically adjusted. Please note: cover images cannot exceed 5 MB in size. Now you are ready to upload your audio files! You can drop files directly from your computer into the Upload Audio Files section or select the folder on your desktop that contains your audiobook files. We only accept audio files in .mp3 and m4a formats. An individual file cannot exceed 200 MB in size and all files combined cannot exceed 2 GB in size. Please wait for your audio files to be completely uploaded before moving to the next step. You will know when files have been successfully uploaded when the “Listen to confirm content” prompt appears . Once your files have been completely uploaded, you can then start to make your Table of Contents. The Table of Contents organizes your audiobook to make sure it is in reading order. You can move the files up and down to ensure they are in the correct order and provide the chapter title for the file under the “Name of Content” section. Please note: What you list in the “Name of content” section will appear in the Table of Contents customers use to navigate your audiobook on our apps. You will then be asked to provide the geographic rights for the title. Please select the countries you own the rights to sell your title in. The final step is to set the price for your title. Please input the price of your title in all the available currencies. Audiobooks pricing is slightly more complicated than eBooks. The royalty percentage thresholds are as follows: 35% royalties for audiobooks priced $2.99 or lower 45% royalties for audiobooks priced over $2.99 Please note: If a customer redeems a free trial token for your audiobook, the royalty amount will be 0. If they redeem using a paid token, the royalty amount will be 32%. Otherwise, the royalty amount will be the values displayed above. Once all steps have been completed you can then select publish! If you have missed any steps, you will receive an error message. Otherwise, your audiobook is in good hands and has been sent for processing. It will soon be available on the Kobo store in 24-72 hours. Be sure to let us know when you’re publishing new audiobooks so we can add them to our audio new release calendar! < https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdy1Hzav1WCotnQqd9zOmrUYj5OMcQcqQ-YJl_erliV6apuYQ/viewform > Happy Audiobook Month! - Kobo Writing Life
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  9. A Moment Or A Movement? Black Bookstore Owners On Business One Year Later On the day George Floyd was murdered — Monday, May 25, 2020 — there weren't any books exclusively tackling white privilege, anti-Blackness, or policing on the New York Times' Best Sellers list. White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo was the only book to break through the week of May 31, but by June 21, almost 70% of the Times' Best Seller list confronted race. With the sale of print books rising just over 8% and all unit sales of books surpassing 750 million, Black bookstores would play an integral role in feeding the nation's "sudden" appetite in the plight of Black people. Black bookstore owners like VaLinda Miller of Turning Page Bookshop in Goose Creek, S.C., can attest to the book boom. "It was crazy and extremely overwhelming. And I had to hire some more staff members just to mail out the books," Miller says. From June through August, Miller says they "were getting [anywhere] from 100 to 200 to 300 orders a day." Even though anti-Blackness is an indiscriminate system that pays little attention to borders, Miller was especially shocked by the international shipping addresses. "About 70% of my customers were from the United States... [but] I was surprised I got so many people from Brazil and Venezuela and so many other foreign countries," Miller says. She called the surge "unbelievable," and that word resonates twofold for Miller, who had to close her first bookstore, The BookSmith, after only a few years when "people weren't interested" in what she had to offer." After Miller reopened in June of 2019, she learned from this and took on a different approach when engaging this past summer's burgeoning readers. She prodded customers to buy a book from their favorite genre in addition to the book on race that they were solemnly after. Miller vividly recounts an instance where an elderly white man entered her store looking for White Fragility. "He said 'My wife told me to come in here and buy a book by a Black author so I can support a Black-owned bookstore,' " Miller says. Her store is the only Black-owned, brick-and-mortar bookstore in the state. "I want you to support my store," she remembers saying, "but if you're going to buy this book, especially considering what's going on, I need you to also buy another book because I know what you're going to do. You're going to take this book home, put it down, and read the other book," Miller says. A few months later, this same gentleman stopped by Turning Page Bookstore to confess that he did exactly that. In other places across the country, Black bookstore owners saw new customers who were engaging in anti-racist reading. Derrick Young, one of the co-owners of Mahogany Books in Southeast Washington, D.C., where the population is more than 90% Black, says he noticed more white customers coming to shop in his store. "We're definitely seeing more people who seem like they're really willing to do the work; we see people who aren't just picking up notable bestsellers like White Fragility," he says. Young is able to gauge those willing to "do the work" based on the books they're asking for. He believes it's indicative of where that person is on their journey. "We see people who are coming in to buy books like Chocolate City from us, or Medical Apartheid," Young says. "Books that are a little bit more specific and dealing with issues that we've been talking about for a long time that create issues of equity in our communities." Young says that his store, which was recently nominated for Bookstore of the Year, has seen some patron attrition, but admits that was inevitable. He isn't discouraged; he's moved by the continued growth of readers who keep coming back. "They're coming back not just to purchase books around Black people, but we now have people who are purchasing books specifically about women issues, about LGBTQ issues," Young says. "So, you know, it is really good to see that people are sticking around and trying to do the reading necessary to really open up their minds." La'Nae Robinson, co-owner of Bliss Books & Wine in Kansas City, Mo., saw something similar in her customers. "They were forming some of their own book clubs and reading groups and they were looking for recommendations," she says. "They wanted us to help facilitate." These facilitated conversations led to a bevy of questions. "Like 'I really didn't understand everything that was going on, but now that I do know, how do I learn more?' And 'What do I do with the information that I have now?' " Robinson recalls. Bliss Books & Wine made these conversations more immediate to Kansas City and started virtual book conversation with local authors. Robinson believes this is how her bookstore was able to retain some customers who may have stopped by once or twice just to say they supported a Black bookstore and bought an anti-racist book. "I think it allowed us to bring in those new customers and then introduce them to new books and some of the classics — some of the ones that were more known within the Black community, but not necessarily mainstream or within the white community," she says. While print book sales are still surging, the Black bookstore owners who spoke to NPR say sales are down for them when compared to last summer, when they were handling 100-300 orders per day. Some of the books purchased at the apex of last summer's protests were never finished. And there are no longer legions of protesters marching for accountability for consecutive days, despite their personal feelings toward the Black Lives Matter global network. Measuring America's progress on race relations one year after a video of George Floyd's murder at the hands of former police officer Derek Chauvin went viral is both premature and inconclusive. However, if last year's book boom on all things white privilege and anti-racism is a litmus test, then, at least in theory, Americans are intrigued at understanding racism and its byproducts. photo citation Derrick Young, co-owner of Mahogany Books in Washington, D.C., says his store has seen new customers in the last year who seem to be "willing to do the work" to educate themselves on issues of race in America. Bonnie Jo Mount/Getty Images La'Nesha Frazier and La'Nae Robinson own Bliss Books & Wine in Kansas City, Mo. Robinson says that even though readers might have initially come in "to check the box," overall they've retained new customers. Courtesy Bliss Books & Wine Article link https://www.npr.org/2021/05/26/999956694/a-moment-or-a-movement-black-bookstore-owners-on-business-one-year-later Welcome to the Self-Published Science Fiction Competition! Or the spussfic, as we like to call it around here. What in the world is the SPSFC? It’s an opportunity to shine a great big laser beam on wonderful works of self-pubbed science fiction. Some rules for admission 1) Your book must be a standalone or the first in a series. 2) One book per author. So send your best! 3) It must be a novel, not an anthology. 4) The book must be self-published and available for purchase now. 5) Works must be at least 50,000 words. Contest link https://hughhowey.com/the-spsfc-begins/ Referral https://kobowritinglife.com/2021/05/29/a-wattpad-imprint-emily-bronte-poetry-and-a-steinbeck-werewolf-novel-this-week-in-book-news/
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  10. Survivor - Session 2 - May 21, 2021 - OEB Slow-Read
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  11. Not so fast: Prolific Black Authors left out of a soon-to-be-published book of writers covering the past 2500 years. The Guardian reports with too Black voices missing from the nearly 750 page book, a major US publisher cancels publication. https://www.theguardian.com/books/2021/may/16/whos-missing-top-author-stirs-anger-with-too-white-history
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  12. Get ready to swoon. Berkley, a Penguin Random House imprint, is rereleasing three Stacey Abrams romantic suspense novels that have been out of print for many years. Originally published under the pen name Selena Montgomery, Rules of Engagement, The Art of Desire, and Power of Persuasion will be out in hardcover and audio in 2022. According to a release, each of these novels, which were her first published books, features “international espionage, page-turning action, a core love story, Black heroines, and a diverse cast of characters.” While the Democratic political leader and Team Spike fan has since written bestsellers on topics from voter suppression to leadership, she has never shied away from her romance-novelist roots. “As my first novels, they remain incredibly special to me,” Abrams said in a statement. “The characters and their adventures are what I’d wished to read as a young Black woman — stories that showcase women of color as nuanced, determined, and exciting. As Selena and as Stacey, I am proud to be a part of the romance-writing community and excited that Berkley is reintroducing these stories for new readers and faithful fans.” If you can’t wait until 2022 to read Abrams’s fiction, don’t stress. While Justice Sleeps, her first legal thriller, will be out on May 11. https://www.vulture.com/2021/05/stacey-abrams-romance-novels-rerelease-berkley.html
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  13. Are you thinking about writing romantic comedy novels? You are in for a treat! Writing romcoms is a wonderful experience… but it’s not necessarily easy. That’s why I’m sharing 3 tips for you when it comes to writing humour into your stories. When I first started writing my Polyamorous Passions romance series in 2018, I didn’t really know what the subgenre was. I referred to these novels as “contemporary romances” and “new adult romance.” Sometimes it takes a while to hone in on our niche. I didn’t even know that “romantic comedy” was a genre of novels! A year into writing those novels, I happened to be reading a book by an indie author who calls her stories “romantic comedies,” and I realized that my style could totally be considered romantic comedy. READ THE COMPLETE ARTICLE https://kobowritinglife.com/2021/05/13/the-trouble-with-writing-romcoms-plus-3-tips-for-writing-humour/
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  14. as an ebook writer, I Can say a lot about this, but the reality is authors of ebooks need to ban am*zon ourselves. Stop publishing through them. am*zon comprehends one key point, most artists whether they want to admit it or not, are so desperate to make a dollar, that they are unwilling to risk any financial penalty, thus they gamble the safest financially, and that means publishing through am*zon in the ebook world. https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2021/03/10/am*zon-library-ebook-monopoly/
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  15. Huzzah! So happy to announce this! ### “The Path of Pen and Sword” A workshop in creative writing and martial arts with Steven Barnes WORKSHOP ON SATURDAY, JUNE 5TH, 12-3PM (Pacific Time) IN PERSON OR ON ZOOM The “Twofold Path of Pen and Sword” is also known as Bun Bu Ryo Do — “The samurai were successful for so long because they studied both cultural and martial arts. They mastered both the pen and the sword, making them formidable intellectual and military opponents.” The Chinese concept of the “Master of the Five Excellences” is looking at the same phenomenon, as is the yogic concept of the “Householder Yogi” who lives in the world of spirit while functioning superbly in the world of flesh. The truth is that there is much in common between the disciplines of creative writing and martial arts: both ask questions about personal identity and the nature of reality. Both demand energy, access to the unconscious mind (Stephen King’s “Boys in the basement” or Bruce Lee’s “It” as in the quote “I do not strike. IT strikes”), and in studying the one we can deepen our understanding of the other. This workshop, an expansion of the original Lifewriting specifically for writers and martial artists, will use two major tools: Joseph Campbell’s structure of the Hero’s Journey, and the yogic “chakra” map of human energy, as a launching point for a discussion and workshop delving into the nexus of breath, flow, focus, fear, commitment, and dynamic living. Come play with us! No previous experience in either writing or martial arts necessary, but all levels welcome. Bring notebooks, loose clothes, and a flexible mind! STEVEN BARNES has published over three million words of fiction, including over thirty novels, episodes of ANDROMEDA, STARGATE SG-1, TWILIGHT ZONE, and THE OUTER LIMITS, including the Emmy-winning episode “A Stitch in Time.” The creator of the Lifewriting system of writing and personal development, he has taught at UCLA and Seattle University, and lectured at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC In the martial arts, he was the Kung-Fu columnist for Black Belt Magazine, holds three black belts, has studied and taught Wu style Tai Chi for forty years, was voted into the Black Karate Federation (BKF) Hall of Fame, was a senior Kali student under Danny Inosanto, and studied Pentjak Silat Serak under Stevan Plinck for almost ten years. When: Saturday, June 5th, 12 noon-3pm, Pacific Time On ZOOM: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2461580494 / ID #: 246 158 0494 Or In Person: Taoist Institute, 10630 Burbank Blvd., North Hollywood, CA 91601 FEE: DONATION BASED, with all proceeds going to the Taoist Institute RSVP: Email: taocore@taoistinstitute.com / Phone: (818) 760-4219
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  16. Book Wish List Sympathy for the Devil: An Angela Bivens Thriller by Christoper Chambers - A metaphysical police procedural romance thriller with a Black female lead? How could it not be good? I must read this book! Trumbull Park by Frank London Brown - I found out about this book from my daughter. Her partner's grandfather wrote this novel about hostile integration at Chicago's Trumbull Park public housing in the late 50s. Ain't that some ish? Public Housing was reserved for whites only but, everyone's taxes fund the project. Good News, though, in 2020, the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame selection committee nominated Mr. Brown's novel for inclusion. It appears from this post from Richard Guzman he was inducted. BRAVO!! https://richardrguzman.com/frank-london-brown-inducted-into-the-chicago-literary-hall-of-fame/ TBD
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  17. Happy Easter Photostory tumblr https://aalbc.com/tc/blogs/entry/261-good-news-blog-stories-through-a-year/?tab=comments#comment-892 Photostory deviantart https://aalbc.com/tc/blogs/entry/261-good-news-blog-stories-through-a-year/?tab=comments#comment-893
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