Friday, December 4, 2015

Nada es Imposible

When I was a little girl, I went to a bilingual kindergarten by the name of El Coqui. The holiday plays would be in Spanish, and not being able to speak much Spanish (I could already count to 10), I wasn't able to participate.


In high school, though, Spanish was my language of choice. I did so well that I took many of my elective classes in Spanish on a college level and even tutored. Still, I had felt my grasp of the language was not quite there. Although I could read it and write it well, I'd always found when native speakers spoke naturally, that was just too fast for me to catch on.


Recently, I was on a line at department store. And two Latinas were talking, complaining the shoes were overpriced and much cheaper somewhere else. One said to the other, you can do what you want but she herself, wasn't going to buy another single thing in that overpriced store, she was tired, and she was going home now, even if she had to leave her friend there standing in line.


And get this...the whole exchange was in Spanish...and I understood almost every word.
Y pienso que yo puedo entender mas. Si me quiero. Nada es imposible.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

10 WAYS TO SHOW AN INDIE AUTHOR SOME LOVE


1. Buy the Book. If you purchase an author’s book, when you BUY at a book fair or through their website (instead of online retailers) the author retains a greater percentage of the purchase price. If you see their books in a bookstore, purchasing there could potentially add to the longevity of both your favorite indie author and that traditional “brick & mortar” book store.

2. Tell Friends. Word of mouth buzz sparks other readers to purchase copies. If you like a book, don’t be shy! Recommend it to others.

3. Write a Review. Readers check the Amazon site to gage an author’s performance. No one wants to waste money on a book that is poorly written. If you have enjoyed a book, let other readers know and tell them why. Leaving a review on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, GoodReads, Shelfari, only takes a moment. And be sure to email or message the author to let them know.

4. Join and Support Authors on Social Media. Indie authors typically do not have a staff assisting them. Many are on such sites as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads, Shelfari, Pinterest, Blogger, YouTube. Connect with them. COMMENT, LIKE, and SHARE their posts. And share your excitement! Instagram or Tweet a photo of you and their book.

5. Request a Book at Your Local Public Library. A public library is more than happy to order  a number of books (budget permitting).

6. Recommend it to Your Book Club. And if your book club has more than a few members, an indie author may be open to attending and/or reading at your book club meeting.

7. Host a Book Party. Be it in your own home or a community event, gathering of readers, refreshments, and an invited author reading excerpts, selling books and signing copies would be a great way to spend a few hours.

8. Invite an Author to Speak for your University, Company, Alumni or Professional Association or an Event. This could expose your favorite author to a larger audience and bulk sales, especially if the organization is willing to gift attendees with a copy of their book.

9. Gift Booklovers a Copy of their Book. If your friend is a booklover, it may even be possible to have a print copy autographed and personalized for them.

10. Feature indies in your newsletter or blog. If you blog or podcast, write for a newsletter, or other medium...spread the love!

Follow, me, Eartha Watts Hicks on FaceBook, GoodReads, Twitter, and Instagram @Earthatone and if you find this information helpful in any way, be sure to purchase my novel, LOVE CHANGES, just for good measure. Visit, http://ow.ly/PNCrB 

 

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

FACE to FACE with BLACK HISTORY....

Sarah Forbes Bonetta was popularly known as the "African Princess."
Sarah was born 'Aina' in 1843, a princess of the Egbado clan of the Yoruba people born at Oke-Odan, an Egbado village in what is now southwest Nigeria.

Sarah Bonetta’s village of Okeadan was attacked by King Gezo of Dahomey, the most notorious slave trading monarch in West Africa in the early 19th century. In this 1847 attack, her parents and siblings were all killed and Gezo’s men seized the four year old Sarah. She remained captive at Gezo’s Court until 1849 when the British Navy Commander, Captain Frederick Forbes’s, landed the HMS Bonetta in Dahomey on a mission to persuade Gezo to give up slave raiding and trading.

Captain Forbes noticed the young princess, marked for execution and bargained for her life. He persuaded King Gezo to “give” her to Queen Victoria, by saying “She would be a present from the King of the Blacks to the Queen of the Whites.”

The girl remained with Forbes in West Africa for the next year where she was baptized and given the name Sarah Forbes Bonetta, Bonetta for the British Navy ship. Of Sarah, Captain Forbes wrote that “She is a perfect genius; she now speaks English well, and [has] great talent for music… She is far in advance of any white child her age in aptness of learning, and strength of mind and affection.…”   

Sarah Forbes Bonetta was taken to Great Britain, where she met Queen Victoria at Windsor Castle on November 9th, 1850. The Queen was so impressed by her intellect, she declared Sarah her goddaughter, and paid her tutorial expenses.

In January 1862, Sarah was attendence at the royal wedding of the princess royale, Victoria.
To see more, visit: http://www.blackpast.org/aah/bonetta-sarah-forbes-1843-1880#sthash.n04ZRN77.dpuf

I am Eartha Watts Hicks, author of Love Changes.

 

Monday, June 22, 2015

RESOURCES: NYC

There are resources and options available to New York City youth. Please feel free to share!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

There are geniuses among us, that do not get the notoriety they deserve. Media would have many believing all inner-city children perform subpar. Financial assistance is often given to special needs students. But what if support (widespread support, honorariums of $10,000 let's say), were to be offered to high achievers from culturally and socioeconomically and disadvantaged backgrounds. How would that affect our students' performance level?

Friday, June 19, 2015

How Do You Handle Social Media Rage?

I have been noticing something lately on social media. A question gets posted in a group; folk chime in with their responses. A younger (usually a sistah), when encountering an opinion that is contrary to her own will blatantly disrespect an older sister. The older sister, feeling attacked, may go into a whole spiel of who they are, what they do, how much they have/own and have accomplished.

I take a different approach. If that person doesn't have enough sense to be respectful of someone with a different opinion, I ignore them and let them stay right there...can't school a fool that ain't ready to learn.

So should this happen (and it might) to any of my fellow queen divas...look at the comment, laugh and say to yourself, "Well, well, well, you are quite the little firecracker, aren't you?" Ignore it. We have careers, children, family, goals, responsibilities, community that ALL require our focus...If that firecracker wants to be Almighty Queen of the Facebook Post, so be it.

Don't give rank strangers the power to destroy your mood or your day.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

BREAKING RULES

Workshopping our writing efforts, we are instructed to make the writing clean to allow the writer to disappear into the voice of the narration and create prose devoid of any ostentatious display of talent. I didn't always do that. My first love was songwriting. My writing is lyrical, has rhythm and often rhymes. It can ring to the ear just a well as it could ring true. That being my gift, I thought it best not to suppress it. In certain passages in Love Changes, I decided to let it fly....


MY FAVORITE PASSAGE (Just Because):
Rather than focus on the negative, I made myself busy. I showered, shampooed my hair, put it in four big plaits, and tied it up. At the salon, Dawn had kept the perm in so long; it burned and now my scalp was scaly. But I didn’t call my sister, bitchin’. Instead, I slipped on some rubber gloves and commenced to clean each room from top to bottom. That didn’t take long. When I’m heated, I do everything faster, but faster isn’t always better. I soon had my head in the oven, coughing from noxious fumes. Common sense should’ve told me: it’s not wise to scrub an oven without proper ventilation. I cracked the windows, letting in some air. But, those toxins still got to me. Bad enough my scalp was itching, now I was gagging. Because of a surge of adrenaline, this black woman forgot: she is not superhuman. So, my adrenaline buzz wasn’t doing me a bit of good. The problem was I couldn’t help but focus on Spider and Romell. Well, I had enough of being pissed off. I tugged off my rubber gloves, brushed my sweaty hands down my lucky nightgown, snatched off my scarf, and scratched my scabs.



LOVE CHANGES is available on Kindle....


KINDLE LINK