Share This Page

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Guest Blogger: Norwood Holland, Author of Sleepless Nights

1. Could you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am a freelance writer and lawyer lobbying on behalf of police and security officers.  I received my law degree from Howard University School of Law and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in English at Fisk University.  A native of Washington DC, I favor D.C.’s local color in my fiction and currently write the offbeat blog editorialindependence.com devoted to diversity issues and labor law, book reviews, and social commentary.

2. Describe your book ‘Sleepless Nights’ in 30 words or less. 
Sleepless Nights is suspenseful with larger than life characters based on a true crime story changing the lives of three young men and those around them–an engrossing legal thriller.

3. What was the hardest part of writing your book?
For me the most difficult part of writing Sleepless Nights was developing the plot line, and trying to come up with creative ways to raise the stakes for Drew Smith.  A fundament rule for legal thrillers is to make your protagonist suffer and with that in mind the challenge was to make Drew Smith suffer while seemingly enjoying the high life.  Drew Smith an urban bon vivant in his favor why should he be troubled?  So I had the difficult task of causing him trouble.  Once I had a central plot down then subplots and characters began to unfold naturally in the development.

4. What books have had the greatest influence on you?
I love biographies and particularly writer’s biographies.  I’m a student of African American Literature so my taste may be a little esoteric.  Two great books which I considered my favorite autobiographies are James Weldon Johnson’s Along This Way and Langston Hughes I Wonder As I Wander.  As for popular fiction I’m a big fan of Harold Robbins and James Michener, I like epic adventures.  I can say unequivocally the works of Langston Hughes have had the greatest influence on me. 

5. What are you working on next?
Minus One, the prequel to the Drew Smith Series is in its final editing stages.  I expect to see it in print by Spring 2012.  Drew Smith finishes law school and takes a job as a hotel concierge while awaiting his bar exam results.  He makes new friends with two Bell Men and after a night out on the town suddenly finds themselves the center of a murder mystery.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thursday-13 Thankful

1. Family, especially my nephew Elijah
2. Friends, including the ones that I don't know on Facebook
3. Boyfriend, approaching seven months - Wow!
4. My Health
5. My new job working from home
6. Lolita Lawrence, my car
7. My Home
8. NCM Publishing Company and Xpress Yourself Publishing Company
9. Food (Any)
10. Chocolate (Any)
11. My Laugh-lines, they complement my dimple well
12. Internet
13. Indoor Plumbing
13. Orange, red, and yellow leaves


What are you thankful for?
Happy Thanksgiving to You and Your Family!


The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Hot Chocolate Review: Nestle Abuelita


I can remember the first time that I experienced authentic Mexican cocoa. I watched my friend, Rosemary, stand over the stove stirring pieces of Mexican chocolate into milk. The smooth taste made me swear off instant, but that did not last long. 


Well, I have found something similar and quick - Nestle Abuelita Authentic Mexican Style Instant Chocolate Drink Mix. I never heard of it until another friend, Jennifer, told me about it. I discovered it in the ethnic aisle of the grocery store. The aroma made me comfortable and warm before sipping.  It had a bold flavor consistent with cocoa beans while the cinnamon soothed the soul. I recommend sharing a cup with a loved one - in person or virtually. Enjoy!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thursday-13 Non-Food Items on My Desk


1. AAA Decal for the Car
2. Zebra Love Push Pins
3. Suave Naturals Mango Mandarin Body Lotion (2 oz) from a cruise that I took in April
4. Coupons to The UPS Store
5. The 31 Woman.com Business Card for Alice Giraud (2)
6. 2010 Writer's Market
7. Staplers (2)
8. Fake Gold Hoop Earrings
9. Orange Highlighter
10. Index Cards
11. Decorative Stone Coaster
12. Pink Address Book
13. Red Sony Digital Recorder (MP3)






Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!
Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants

Monday, November 14, 2011

Guest Blogger: Author S. Monique Smith


As I started writing my story, “Iam the Ancestor,” I became overwhelmingly compiled to bring awareness to many areas that have affected my life. The immediate are:

Sharing of one’s history is nothing new, but are people really educating their children about their roots and the importance of them. Good or bad, parent must continue to empower them with that knowledge; they may even enlighten themselves during the process. 

Thus: GENEALOGY
Elementary children with cell phones may be ok for many, but do parents and care givers have a STRONG plan enforced with them about their safety and surroundings.  Let them know that the boggy man is not just something that they imagine under the bed or peeking from the closet—it’s lives amongst us. Oh yea, the boggy grows as they grow and changes often. Worst of all, it’s not always a deformed evil looking creature, which only appears once they’re alone. 

Thus: PREDATORS
Blinded eye people – Any person who KNOWINGLY fails to perform their duties are partially responsible for damages and harm they allow to take place. There are all types of signs and processes that are being ignored by them which should immediately be acknowledge in any possible way.  Blinded eye people are aiders and abettors for sharing in wrongful acts because their actions or, lack of. Family, Friends, Neighbors and Municipalities: 

Thus “ROLE PLAYERS”.
If I can bring hope of any, to show proof that light IS at the end of the tunnel, that a cloud can be lassoed and can proudly shout…..I AM ABLE……………..GET READY, BE READY AND STAY READY……………………Thus: INSPIRED


Get to know Monique:


1. What’s so special about your book with so many others out there?
A. That I’m living the life as a ‘Missing Person’…because I am.

2.  Have you ever written a book before?
A. I have never neither written nor desired to write a book before now but felt the need to not only share my story with my children, but to the world in hopes of HELPING anyone….another innocent child more so.

3. Why a book now?
A. Sharing! It’s time for me to share MY story and to step out on faith with another project . . . Why now? Once one knows they are ready for something . . . IT IS TIME! I had opportunities before that were small….’it’s the season now I guess”.  Also, the resources I have now make it so much easier for the novice in this writing/publishing area.

4. What challenges are you facing?
A.  This a whole new arena for me. Way out of my scope. …Did I say WAY? So researching, educating myself and cherry picking the resources that could directly aid me in this process was priority…and COSTLY! People are NOT the professionals that they THINK they are.

5. Can you share anything exciting about the book?
A. Yes I can . . . my book is not just for me to share with my children. It will inspire people in so many other areas of their lives…I know and have been told DAILY since I’ve started. With that being said…I’ll be launching and advocating the importance of instilling in not just our youth, but how EVERYONE is an Ancestor….Stay Tuned.


Sunday, November 6, 2011

Hot Chocolate Review: Cold Stone Creamery Hot Cocoa Mix



Winter is the best time of year to cuddle up with a loved one and enjoy a nice cup of hot chocolate.  Homemade is the best, but instant has its advantages too. Recently, I tried Cold Stone Creamery Smooth Cravings Dark Chocolate Hot Cocoa Mix. I convinced myself that I was going to have an out-of-body experience when I tasted it; after all, it was Cold Stone.  Well, it did not happen. Matter of fact, it did not jolt my system at it. It fulfilled a chocolate craving and the need for something hot.  I would have been better off purchasing something cheaper. Cold Stone should stick to what it knows best, ice cream. Until next time, stay hugged up. 

I am in search of the best instant hot chocolate, any suggestions?


Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Thursday, November 3, 2011

National Novel Writing Month Participant

Dear Friends: 
I am not ignoring you; I am participating in this year's National Novel Writing Month. I am crunching out my daily words, hoping to make it to 50,000 by November 30. My blog post might not appear as often, but I know you understand.  Thus far, I have consumed some fun snacks to keep me energized such as chocolate eyeballs and a Faygo Redpop. I am up to 3334 as of yesterday. I will keep you posted on my progress. Thank you for visiting!