Sunday, September 29, 2013

Black Pearls Blog Tours: Intimate Conversation with Debra Owsley

Black Pearls Blog Tours: Intimate Conversation with Debra Owsley: Intimate Conversation with Debra Owsley In 2005, Debra Owsley turned her love for reading and her hobby to support h...

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Intimate Conversation with Sonja Lewis

Intimate Conversation with Sonja Lewis

Author of The Barrenness, Sonja Lewis has appeared on CNN and The Tom Joyner Morning Show. She has also been featured in Black Enterprise, and in the media in Canada and the United Kingdom.  A former reporter for The Albany Herald (Georgia), Sonja has also written for British newspaper The Guardian. Currently, she writes a blog for the Huffington Post, UK.  A member of the Society of Authors, Sonja lives in London with her husband, Paul.

BPM: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
Yes, when I was a girl I loved nothing more than to make up stories for my youngest sister, though I didn’t write them down. I named the characters, described them and acted them out. When I think back, I absolutely loved the free thinking, no rules just creativity. My first real writing assignment came with a state-wide contest when I was a tween.  What a tree means to me? I won and have been hooked since.

BPM:  Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of your family.
My church, the Spring Creek Missionary Baptist Church, a small church in Leary, GA. There I gained confidence by writing the church history, speeches, the weekly announcements and very theatrically delivering these pieces. And wonderfully, the people embraced me, encouraged me, said I had something special even when I read in Sunday School.

BPM: What does growth mean to you?
I feel I’ve grown when I learn from a mistake or a challenge and move on, when I am able to take from the past, let it go; and abide in the present and imagine the future positively. That to me is exponential growth.

BPM: Introduce us to your book,
The Blindsided Prophet,  and the main characters. What makes each one special? Do you have any favorites?
The Blindsided Prophet is the story of a modern day prophet who is caught unawares by a tragic event when he is a teenager. This alters his life forever. Fifteen years later, at God’s bidding Isaiah Brown returns to Coffee, GA, to unravel the tragedy, make reparation and prevent an even worse tragedy.

The main character, Isaiah Brown, is probably my favorite because he is original. I don’t know anyone like him. Naturally, he had to come from somewhere so I must have drawn on characteristics of some of the world’s great people, some perhaps renown. In any case, he is unique. He is a modern-day prophet.

Also, I favor Mae Cook as she is so very much like many people I know—well meaning, good to the core, but gets it wrong a lot of times. At middle age, she learns valuable life lessons. Through Mae, we see that it is never too late to grow-up.

BPM: What drew you to tackle the questions or topics in The Blindsided Prophet?
My faith, I suppose is the short answer.  I remember being called arrogant once by a young preacher when I talked of my own personal relationship with God. I wanted to show that faith is not just about religion, it is about dwelling/residing within yourself if you will. Deep within you meet God as and when you please. You just have to focus. There, you find the answers.

BPM: Does your faith or education inspire your writing?
Yes, my faith does. I think Christianity is misunderstood often but not just in non-Christian countries but right here at home. People are turned off by these people who profess to know this Christ but He doesn’t always show up in our attitudes, in the way we live etc…

With my first book a Christian radio announcer cancelled the interview at the last minute because she found profanity in the book. Sorry but there is profanity in life and I try to create a real picture, if you will. I totally respect that it was not the book for her and her audience, but I didn’t have a lot of time for her assumption that she had inside information with God that I didn’t have, and that she was living more purely than I, if you will. I somehow doubt it.  But if she is, good for her but don’t judge.

BPM:  Ultimately, what do you want readers to gain from your book?
A spell bounding read that stays with them for a very long time.

BPM: How do you feel about e-books vs print books?
I prefer print books to touch them, to smell them, to read them and I always will but e-book readers, particularly the Kindle, have a place in our world. I love being able to access endless books and take countless reads on holiday, the train, etc… But if I had to choose, I’d choose print books every time. Now my business sense says that might be the wrong choice, but it is what I think.

BPM: Do you think book sales are the only indicator of your success as a writer?
No, I don’t. I do think sales are a huge indicator, but for example, with my first novel, The Barrenness, I had a campaign that took the lid off a very important social issue—a woman being fulfilled without becoming a mother.  One of my goals was to start a worldwide conversation about the topic. I’d like to think that I played a role in all the attention that subsequently came to the subject.

BPM: My writing offers the following legacy to future readers....
The legacy of taking responsibility for one’s own thoughts and learning how to find peace within through changes one’s thinking.

Connect with Sonja at:  or  visit her website:


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Tender To the Touch

Book Excerpt Kenya Harris “He wants Tyree to meet his latest girlfriend,” Kenya complained. “He moved in with a beauty queen after dating her for three months. I can’t have my four-year-old son around that woman. Mack may think he trusts her with our son, but I don’t.” “You’ve got to let him see his father, Kenya,” Cynthia commented. “Mack can see Tyree if he comes to my house,” Kenya replied. “But he won’t have Tyree around any woman that isn’t his wife, and if he does get married again, I have to like the wife before she gets to know my son.” “If we didn’t know you, we’d think you were serious,” Zora interjected. “We tried to tell you not to get involved with Mack in the first place, but you didn’t listen. Now you have a son with him, so he’s going to be around forever. You two need to play nice.” Kenya smirked. “I needed you say something stronger than ‘Leave that old man alone, Kenya.’ Ya’ll know how I am with those old-school rugged and fine men. I needed you to throw up a red flag or some other kind of signal to make me listen.” About the Author Nicole S. Rouse was born and raised in Philadelphia. She earned her degree from Temple University and is currently a managing editor at a major educational publishing company. Nicole’s debut novel, Happily Ever Now, consistently ranked on the Top 25 Christian Independent Publishers bestsellers lists after its 2007 release. Nicole’s sophomore novel, Someone to Love Me, was picked up by the Black Expressions Book Club® before its scheduled release date. Other books by Nicole include: Be Careful What You Pray For (2010), Still Standing (2012), and Tender to the Touch (2013). During her spare time, she serves as an undergraduate advisor at Temple University for Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc., where she encourages the young adult women to dream beyond their expectations. She also teaches writing workshops to aspiring writers. Nicole is a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., and resides near Philadelphia, PA. About the Book For the past eleven years, Reverend J. Amanda King served as an anointed and powerful leader for the women’s ministry of Faith Tabernacle Church. Though thousands of women had been blessed by her leadership, J. Amanda was most fond of the ministry she built with five of her sorority sisters. To them she was more than a spiritual leader and counselor. She was their sister and true friend. The bond of the sisterhood is tested when J. Amanda’s old flame, “Hunky” Crawford, resurfaces and pleasant memories of their life together seem more appealing than the one she shares with her husband, David. In time, J. Amanda remembers why she ultimately chose David over Hunky, but is she too late? Feeling rejected for a second time, Hunky exposes secrets that threaten to destroy J. Amanda’s relationship with her husband and line sisters forever and lead to a startling death. Will J. Amanda salvage her relationships and get her life back on track? Or, will she give up on God and accept the consequences for turning her back on her faith? Purchase the Book Online at: For more information: Book Review Good story about a sisterhood, a broken bond and truth coming to the light. Visit the author online at: View the blog tour schedule at:

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