Friday, November 28, 2008

Santa Baby 2008 Virtual Book Tour for Hopeless Romantics

The Santa Baby 2008 Virtual Book Tour allows hopeless romantics to flex their very vivid imaginations and soar as they hear from ten beloved romance writers just in time for the holidays!

All The Buzz Reviews and The GRITS COM Literary Service have teamed up to host the Santa Baby 2008 Virtual Book Tour headlining some of today’s exciting African American romance writers, December 1-12, 2008!

This exclusive ten-day virtual book tour will give romance readers, and new readers to the genre, a chance to hear from ten popular writers about their new and upcoming book releases just in time for the holidays!

This virtual book tour is inspired by the sultry sex-kitten, Eartha Kitt. Her Christmas song, “Santa Baby,” topped the charts in 1953 making her one of the most popular entertainers in the world. The same sensuous mix that Eartha Kitt brought to this Christmas song many years ago, is the same sensuous mix - Gwyneth Bolton, Niobia Bryant, Dyanne Davis, Gwynne Forster, Bettye Griffin, Donna Hill, Andrea Jackson, Deborah Fletcher Mello, Farrah Rochon, and Stefanie Worth - bring to their work and to this tour!

Romance novels made an astonishing $1.4 billion last year, making the romance genre one of the top sellers in the publishing industry. Though some complain that the formulaic plot and “happily-ever-after” endings in romances aren’t always indicative of real life; the staggering number of romances sold each year is testament to its popularity and staying power!

The Santa Baby 2008 Virtual Book Tour begins Monday, December 1, 2008. So join the tour at AllTheBuzzReviews ( or ( All The Buzz ReviewsAll The Buzz Reviews is the book reviews and literary event blog of Renee Williams, the CEO & Owner of Literary Signature Service, an event planning business specializing in literary events for authors of every genre.

About The GRITS COM Literary ServiceThe GRITS COM Literary Service is an online book promotion service that specializes in serving the unique web publicity needs of authors and publishers.

The GRITS COM Literary Service
526 Kingwood Drive, Suite 404
Kingwood, TX 77339

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Obama's victory, divine order, and mission

I got an email from a friend yesterday, so pleadingly heartfelt that it stopped my perfunctory subject skimming and made me answer her on the spot. She just wanted to know what Obama's win meant to her friends.

Like her, there are so many words, thoughts and possibilities in my head they are hard to corral. When I allow myself to consider the meaning of this win, I get that tight feeling in my chest that comes with anxiety. I can feel my breathing deepen, my pulse race. My head has been hurting since Tuesday morning. Concentrating at work has been beyond difficult.

But it's all good: because my heart is in its best condition ever. So here's what I wrote to my friend:

For me, the belief Barack fostered in me long ago is one that doesn't end with the election. I am waiting to answer his next call to service for community and self. More than that, though, I can't help but reflect on my kids' experiences. With the three of them being so spread out, it offers me differing perspectives.

My 19-year-old college student cast his first-ever vote for Barack. As if that isn't powerful enough, I still see him standing on the brink of his future, but that road block "right there" has been removed to allow him to proceed more directly rather than following the detour to his very near destination -- dreams.

For my 11-year-old, who has so much to grasp about tomorrow, it's as new, exciting and now as starting middle school was this year. There is no historical baggage for him in this victory. He's a kid, you know? He'll likely remember helping me put the sign in the yard, learning the issues throughout the campaign, going to the polls with me, following the vote throughout the evening, and cheering at midnight along with the rest of the world. Barack's win is Tweenage cool like a baseball season that culminates with a playoff trophy or an end-of-semester A. Perhaps the lesson for him will be in witnessing hard work pay off.

For my 6-year-old daughter, who awoke Nov. 4 saying, "Today is the election!," there are issues and a process of which she has no clue (save for "You color circles to vote?"). But beyond all the brown baby dolls I can buy for her, and the stories I can tell about how her Nana integrated her high school in 1956 or how her great-grandma ran her own business in that same small southern-minded town, my youngest one gets to rise through the world watching two little girls who look like her grow up in the White House.

That's the thought that takes my breath away.

There's a line in Stevie Wonder's song, "As," that says "You can bet your life [. . . ] that God knew exactly where he wanted you to be placed." I feel as if each of us has been divinely planted in this moment at our appointed ages and stages to continue the momentum with our unique vision and talents.

That mandate hit home even harder today when I remembered my cancelled airline ticket I purchased to attend the African American Literary Awards Show in September. At the last minute, I had to cancel that trip. But now I have a way to DC for Barack's inauguration and a cousin who lives there to stay with.

My excitement is beyond words. As all things are in divine order, I can't wait to discover my mission in this blessing.


Monday, November 03, 2008

On the Cusp of Change

Well, when I plopped down to start logging words tonight, it wasn’t meant to be in blog form. But I can’t help it. I guess I – like many others – feel compelled to record my thoughts for posterity on the eve of this historic presidential election.

I have that queasy churning in my stomach that I used to get before strolling the runway in a fashion show or taking the microphone for a news broadcast or hitting the stage for a dance performance.

It’s showtime, baby.

I saw Obama back in May of '07 at the Detroit Economic Club. The place was packed. And just like the rallies that would soon follow, that esteemed business audience was filled with faces of every hue that ran the generational gamut from Millennials to Boomers. That day, it was like he told folks here in Detroit that the Emperor had no clothes, words others seemed afraid to utter. And, oh, how the truth has come to pass! I admired the frankness, the confident intelligence shared with a next-door-neighbor smile.

What’s that saying about "you had me at hello?" Yeah, that’s me and Barack, except the phrase of capture was “Good Afternoon.”

Friends were surprised that I didn’t back Hilary. I can see why. My grandmother owned and operated her own hair salon in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, from the 70s until her death in 1989. She was down in the shop working when she suffered the heart attack that took her life. But what a role model for me! To see this Saved & Sanctified African American woman handling her business in that small, small-minded town.

That’s the same place my mother grew up. And when she reached high school age, she was one of a tiny group of young teens who integrated Cape Girardeau Central High School in the late 50s. I watched my mother navigate one hurdle after another as I grew up: raising four kids, working full time and attending school the whole time I was growing up.

So, I can see why people would’ve thought I’d be a Hilary fan. Barack, for me, was simply bigger picture. My oldest son is a second year college student. At 19, this is his first presidential election – and what a vote he gets to cast! In spite of the confusion surrounding do’s and don’ts for first-time voters, absentee ballots, etc., he has his new address sticker, his patience and his ID, ready to stand in line and do what he must for the America our ancestors struggled to shape.

Like so many Americans, I believe that November 4th, 2008, means a lot more than pulling a lever or punching a ballot. Healthcare, education, way of life, a global economy, broader vision, a different path are all pinned to Barack's coat tails. For me, it’s way past time to stop sitting on the fence of complacency watching better ways of being pass our country by.

My hope?
Today cusp, tomorrow change.