Tanasia Thomas (Tampa, Florida)
Tanasia Thomas is many things - a devoted wife, mother, daughter, sister, cousin, niece and friend. Using her experience with life, relationships, and people in general, she takes the lessons that she’s learned in life to educate and motivate others. She enjoys writing Urban Fiction and African American Romance. Her goal is to eventually expand her repertoire to incorporate other genres, write a classic novel, and a New York Times best seller. Tanasia describes herself as a true Capricorn, forever striving for excellence and success.
I am from Rochester NY. I started writing books in the third grade. I now reside in Clearwater, Florida where I continue to publish my own book and I am also a published author.
Ben Burgess Jr. (Freeport, NY)
Ben Burgess Jr is the author of the award-winning novels "Monster," "Wounded," the poetry book "Times Have Changed and Life is Strange" and the new novel "Love and Happiness." He is an active performer of spoken word poetry. Ben Burgess Jr uses his love of writing to inspire and influence youths to strive for what they believe in, and to never give up on their dreams. His poetry book "Times Have Changed and Life is Strange" and his novel "Monster" are currently used in schools on the lower east side of Manhattan. Ben Burgess has a BA degree in Business Management and an MA degree in Educational Leadership. He is the proud father of his daughter Jaelynn and is active in trying to improve urban neighborhoods and communities.
Brittany Baker (Indianapolis)
Brittany is a 19 year old girl who enjoys dancing, singing and writing. She started writing short stories at the tender age of seven, and began writing novels in junior high school. Initially, she created her own fictional world of friends as an escape from her worries. She began to open up her world of fiction to her peers who became addicted to the "Seasons" series. Currently, Brittany is entering her freshman year of college. She plans to double major in Spanish and International business. After college, she plans on attending law school, and becoming a lawyer/entrepreneur dedicated to helping others.
Shawn Christopher (Hampton, VA)
Shawn Christopher is a Texas native who currently resides in the Hampton Roads area. He is pursuing a master’s degree in Counseling at Hampton University and simultaneously spends his time writing urban fiction novels. Shawn has been inspired by many different African-American authors and describes his literature as "a testimony to the 90's era of book creations with a street aesthetic." Homie. Lover. Friend. is his first urban fiction novel with influences from his generation's idea of the African-American culture and life experiences. He hopes to continue his writing at Delphine Publications with a spin-off to this book and its anticipated sequel.
About his book, Homie. Lover. Friend.
When the love lives of three best-friends living in the fast streets of ATL become entangled, relationships as they know it will be turned upside down in a charade of lies, deceit and manipulation. Beau is a gay up and coming real estate agent who struggles to find a long-term relationship despite the previous transgressions in his past. Monae is a sexy and savvy corporate woman that tussles with adopting a new leadership role in her career and devoting her time to an all or nothing fiancé. Roland is a successful entrepreneur and self-proclaimed dog who begins to fear that karma wants him to see the error in his ways. Together these three will be forced to re-evaluate what it truly means to be an H.L.F.
Marlon Bradley (Kingsland, GA)
M. Bradley was born Marlon Bradley on November 17, 1980 in Kansas City, Missouri. Marlon's love for literature started at a very early age. After learning how to read at 3, he could usually be found curled up with his favorite book, Grimm's Fairy Tales and dictionary to look up any word he didn't know. Throughout his early years, his affinity for books grew and grew. Around 10, Marlon discovered the works of William Shakespeare. Even though he could barely understand the playwright's words, something spoke to him. The melodic way that Shakespeare's words flowed inspired Marlon to try his hand at poetry. Noticing his son's new hobby, Marlon's father found a way to focus his son's burgeoning interest. At 13, he challenged his son to continue honing his pen by occasionally issuing a challenge to tell a story with his poetry. At 18, Marlon made his first attempt at writing a novel. And while he never finished that first manuscript, the seed had been planted. Throughout his 20's, Marlon tried his hand at songwriting as a new way to combine his love of both storytelling and lyricism. Before he passed away, Marlon's father issued one final challenge: tell the stories that are closest to his heart. With his father's words playing on constant repeat in his head, Marlon devoted himself to finishing his first novel at any cost. After going through countless ideas that just didn't feel right, a seemingly innocuous conversation with a friend produced the idea that eventually became Torn.
La Shawna Griffith (Bridgetown)
My name is La Shawna Griffith and I am a Barbadian Poet/Student and Performer. I am a final year student at the University Of The West Indies studying my BSC in Political Science Special. I am a poetry enthusiast and I am the proud author of my first ever publication of poetry entitled La Shawna- Unlock The Door available on Amazon and Kindle. Launching my book has led me to defy the odds, as I am one of the youngest published poets here in Barbados at the age of 21. My role model and idol in terms of poetry is Miss Maya Angelou. I love her poem, “I Know Why the Caged Birds Sing.” I aspire to become a literary legend just like she did. My goal is to be a voice to the voiceless and a hope and an inspiration to all that read my work.
Cher-Rhonda began her journey to writing in 2002. Her first novel, “Between Secrets” started as a short poem about a married man and woman professing their forbidden love for each other. But this short poem did not stop there; it developed into a five novel series of emotion, romance, betrayal, suspense, love, and friendship bonds. The series include: Between Secrets, Adverse Intentions, Vanessa’s Revenge, and coming soon; My Own Worst Enemy and Assualt with a Deadly Pen.
Cher-Rhonda has participated in various book signings and book fairs throughout the nation including; The National Black Book Festival, The Atlanta Multi Cultural Book Festival, Milwaukee Urban Book Festival, Milwaukee Fall Fiction Fest, and many more throughout the city of Milwaukee. She has also partnered with Milwaukee 311 Lounge with book readings and local reading events. She has written short stories with authors locally and nationally.
Cher-Rhonda is a sponsor of Our Daily Bread Community Outreach Center, Inc which is a faith-based community center that empowers young girls and ladies challenged with the lack of parenting, poverty, and illiteracy through its outreach programs. Cher-Rhonda has given motivational speeches regarding the importance of literacy at Frederick J. Gaenslen School in Milwaukee.
Friends describe me as self-motivated, generous, and gregarious. Born and raised in Detroit, MI, I’m an Information Technology Project Manager by profession, which doesn’t always make sense to people that meet me for the first time. I have a serious case of ADD (self-diagnosed) and I don’t do well with chaos. I try to travel a lot to keep me busy, and out of trouble.
Most people who know me realize that I have a wild side that won’t quit. I also have a history of adversity and tragedy that a lot of people would be shocked to know. My story is one I want to share with anyone willing to hear and learn. My goal is rather simple: to use my experiences and skills to help people through struggles and feelings of despair, and chart a plan for a bright future.
About her book
Honey, Make That Money . . . Don’t Let It Make You is the true coming-of-age story of a young woman whose sorrow is transformed into inspiration.
After she was stolen from her teenage parents and placed into adoption by her maternal grandmother, Tina was adopted by the Honey family and raised with unconditional love in a middle-class neighborhood in Detroit, Michigan. The church-going Honeys sheltered and nurtured Tina, but they couldn’t protect her from her desire for excitement.
After she was raped as a naïve young teen, Tina’s world split in two: she attended school and pursued a career in the medical field in one while performing in strip clubs, dating drug dealers, and raking in cash as a high-end escort in the other.
In this first of a three-part series, Honey, Make That Money . . . Don’t Let It Make You takes readers on an incredible journey with in-your-face sexuality, violence, and tragic misfortune. As Tina makes her way through one adversity after another, her life story becomes one of a phoenix rising from the ashes. Through her engaging style and matter-of-fact honesty about the dangerous world in which she lived, Tina proves that life can—and will—get better.
Tina “Honeybee” Honey is a Detroit, Michigan, native. She is the founder of Phoenix Experience Inc., and a motivational speaker. The phoenix is a rare bird that symbolizes the death and rebirth that every human being experiences when facing adversity and other challenges in life. Her desire to help others succeed despite life’s many obstacles was the catalyst for the Phoenix Experience ™.
Heather E. Burton, PhD, is a native of Cleveland Ohio and graduate of The Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Journalism and African-American Studies with a minor in Theater, a Masters of Public Administration and a Doctor of Philosophy in Urban Studies and Public Affairs both from Cleveland State University.
She is employed with the University of Akron as Director of Graduate Student Development and faculty in the Pan African Studies Department. Her work with non-profit organizations, suburban school districts, and Cleveland and Akron Public Schools has allowed her to spend time working with and enhancing the lives of others through philanthropy, spiritual dialogue, motivational speaking and interactive workshops.
Dr. Burton has been a guest speaker for BET Foundation Girls Empowerment Summit, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., The University of Akron, Northeast Ohio Universities Colleges of Medicine and Pharmacy, Eastern Stars, National Baptist Congress, National Missionary Baptist Convention of America, Northern Ohio Baptist District Association, Cleveland Sub-District, Women’s Baptist Alliance World Day of Prayer, Wesley Temple AME Health and Wellness workshop, Morning Star First Baptist Church, Hickory, North Carolina, Warren G. Harding High School, Akron Public Schools, Detroit Charter Schools, Cleveland Public Schools and many others. Dr. Burton has been featured in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, The Call and Post, Kaleidoscope, and honored as a Torchbearer for the R.H. Boyd Union Review.
Dr. Burton is the author of Crimson Heights, a fiction novel that addresses women in hopes of impacting decision making around intimacy and sexual relationships. She has been featured as a guest columnist with The Call and Post and the R.H. Boyd Union Review.
Dr. Burton serves as the Praise Dance Advisor, Oratorical coach, and instructor of a public speaking class for East Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church, Rev. A. Charles Bowie, Pastor. She is the advisor for the Historic Greater Friendship Community Drill Team ages 6 -18, under Rev. Larry W. Howard. Dr. Burton was initiated as a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, at The Ohio State University, Epsilon Chapter. Currently she is a member of the Greater Cleveland Alumnae Chapter. Dr. Burton is the founder of Crimson Heights Ministries, Inc. a 501(c)3 geared towards the holistic well-being of women.
Dr. Burton has been involved in acting for over thirty years. Her stage credits include “The Vagina Monologues”, “A Lesson Before Dying”, “The Blacker the Berry”, “The Sorrows of Stephen”, and a host of other plays. Her directorial debut came with her self-written play “The Master” at the age of16. She has also directed, “My Black Woman" and "Watch Ye”. Dr. Burton’s film and television credits include “Burger King”, “Miracle Dogs”, “Best Buy”, “Value City”, “Cash Stop”, “Northfield Park” and others. She has been a plus-size model for “Danskin”, “Roses”, “Hambricks”, “Value City/Shotensteins”, “Weiss Furs” and others.
Dr. Burton credits her accomplishments to her personal relationship with Jesus Christ and her family. Her favorite scripture is, “Be not afraid neither be thou dismayed for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest.” Joshua 1:9
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