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The Rise – An Interview with Toni Newman

Toni Newman Pic

While reading I Rise: The Transformation of Toni Newman, I started to reflect on my own life. For one, I didn’t get nearly as much attention from the same sex in high school and college as Toni. (Yes, I’m kinda jealous, haha!) Aside from that, I was able to reconfirm just how good I had it (and still do). My family accepted my sexuality when I came out and I never had to go to extremes to explore and be who I was. The same can’t be said for Toni, nor for many other transgender people for whom she wrote this book. While her strict Christian family accepted her as a gay male, that connection was lost once she told them the full story. She explored being a man, but found that she couldn’t hide from who she really was. This led to her decision to make the transition. And what followed was a story worth making into a movie.

I really enjoyed my conversation with Toni and learned so much by reading her story. Despite all of her circumstances, she gave us all the message to live in the fullness of who you are. This is something we both agree on. My tagline is Show Yourself, after all.

Watch the video below, subscribe, and grab a copy of her book for the full story.

The Read: Toni Newman

Purchase I Rise and Find the Author

Website: http://www.tonidnewman.com/

Short Film: Heart of a Woman

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For more great authors and interviews, check out the Black LGBT Authors Database.

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Getting Gorgeous – An Interview with Renaldo Christopher

RCpic

Watch my conversation with Renaldo Christopher, author of Gorgeous. It’s the story of four Black, gay men who try to escape the pasts that always seem to creep back up. We explore the stories of these characters and talk about how sickness helped him power through the first draft of his novel.

Some interesting points were when we discussed why he called his book “trash”, his thoughts about getting serious about making his writing a business, and especially his thoughts on the urban fiction genre. After a couple of conversations online with others about the show, I can tell that his perspective (found ten minutes into the video) ruffled a few feathers. Take a look and let me know your thoughts. Don’t forget to subscribe!

The Read: Renaldo Christopher

Buy Gorgeous and Find the Author

 

Website: http://novaslim.com/

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For more great authors and interviews, check out the Black LGBT Authors Database.

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Authors

An Interview With Jayce Baron, Author of ‘Absolutely Us’

Jayce Baron

In this episode of The Read, I get personal with Jayce Baron, author of Absolutely Me. He’s now got a follow-up to that book, titled Absolutely Us, and we talk about what’s in store for readers. I also dig into his numerous blog posts, podcasts, events, and all of the things that made him who he is today.

His story is interesting. For one, his mother is the First Lady of a Baptist church. Being her gay son came with its challenges, but he has a strong sense of self. We talk about where that comes from and his journey from being a rape victim to becoming a champion for HIV / AIDS awareness and an author. Despite the heavy topics, it was a very fun conversation. Watch the interview now!

The Read: Jayce Baron

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Purchase Absolutely Me and pre-order Absolutely Us here.

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An Interview With James Earl Hardy of ‘B-Boy Blues’

James Earl Hardy

My interview with James Earl Hardy is one that I know many of you will enjoy. I wasn’t able to get a visual of him, but our talk over the phone was just as good. We talk about his book, B-Boy Blues, his special relationship to E. Lynn Harris, and how it felt to see his characters brought to life on the stage. There’s also a ton more! Listen in on a great conversation!

The Read: James Earl Hardy

Books from this author

Find a full listing of this author’s books here.

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Facebook Pages: B-Boy Blues the play | Confessions of a Homo Thug Porn Star

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Bisexual Urban Fiction – An Interview with Cedric Quincy

Cedric Quincy Books

In my latest episode of The Read, I had a conversation with Cedric Quincy, author of The Misunderstanding of Don Ho and more recently, co-author of Where the Players Dwell. We discussed his work and dug a little deeper. We talked about how he lived life as a pan / bisexual man, what his wife thought about it, and his experience being outed in the publishing industry. His story is a good one, so pull up a chair and take a look!

The Read: Cedric Quincy

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Inspiration for All: An Interview with Brandon Goode

Brandon Goode Interview

I had the pleasure of coming across a new LGBT fantasy author on Twitter and I just knew that we would have an interesting conversation. Brandon Goode released his debut novel, The Secrets of Eden, about a week prior to our interview. As a new author in the fantasy genre myself, I knew we would have some things in common.

In this episode of The Read on YouTube, we talk about his interests in journalism and how that got transferred into writing his novel. We also expressed similarities in critically breaking down the characters of reality shows and how that helps us as writers. However, what I thought was most potent, was his passion for inspiring others to go for their dreams.

Watch the interview below and get acquainted with your new favorite author!

The Read: Brandon Goode

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Lawayne Childrey: From Tragedy To Triumph

Lawayne Childrey Blog pic

My interview with Lawayne Childrey was one like no other I had done before. I’ve interviewed other authors about their lives, but never has a story resonated so deeply with me and with those of you who have watched. Childrey is the author of Peeling Back the Layers: A Story of Trauma, Grace and Triumph. It’s an autobiography that starts with the tragic death of his little cousin; a story told in such heart-wrenching detail that you’re immediately drawn in. After a series of negatives, even worse negatives, and a positive that’s most certainly a negative (HIV+, that is), Childrey uses the strength that has always been a part of him to pull himself out and become an award-winning journalist. Watch our interview below and get ready for the feels and the inspiration from this great story!

The Read: Lawayne Childrey

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La Toya Hankins: For the Love of Yourself

La Toya Hankins Interview

The way you discover your sexuality is as unique to everyone as their fingerprints. For La Toya Hankins, author of lesbian fiction titles SBF Seeking… and K-RHO: The Sweet Taste of Sisterhood, she came to the realization of her orientation just months before she was to be married to a man. As a springboard into exploring feelings long buried, she placed a personal ad for a sexual experience with a white man and found out that she was gay. This serves as the exciting premise for her first book, but there’s so much more to explore with this writer.

 

Having grown up in North Carolina, Hankins seeks to destroy stereotypes about southern living. And as a result of her time in a college sorority, she emphasizes the values of sisterhood and self love in her work.  I interviewed Hankins about all of this in my YouTube Live show, The Read. One of the best moments in the interview is where she elaborates on this point: “As long as you are good with you, that’s all that matters.” I couldn’t agree more. Watch the full episode below.

The Read: La Toya Hankins

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Authors

Larry Benjamin: The Art of Words

Larry Benjamin

Last week, I interviewed Larry Benjamin, author of What Binds UsUnbroken, and most recently, Vampire Rising. He spoke about writing as a way to make some money during a rough time, the line between reality and fiction in his semi-autobiographical novel, and the message of the effects of prejudice and fetishizing any particular group of people. He also discussed the importance of diversity and inclusion, which is fitting because just two days ago, we saw that idea echoed with the Oscar for Best Picture going to Moonlight.

However, what I found most interesting in this interview was his story of finding love, culminating in marriage that was spurred on by an unexpected call from friends about the passage of marriage equality in PA.

Watch the interview below.

The Read: Larry Benjamin

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Read his blog | Visit his website

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Jefferey Spivey – Deeper than Fashion

Jefferey Spivey

In the second episode of my live author interview series, The Read, I talked with Jefferey Spivey of Uptown Bourgeois. He’s a freelance writer and fashion blogger who recently took his work into deeper areas of thought. This transformation lead to the completion of his first book, It’s Okay If You Don’t Read Everything. It’s a compilation of essays and articles from his blog along with a few new ones. I recommend giving it a look because every page leaves you laughing, smiling, or reflecting.

The bulk of the book is about the lessons Jefferey has learned from life; everything from being stereotyped as a tall Black man to breaking away from a job he didn’t like in order to live on his own terms. Our conversation tackles finding love, diversity in the fashion industry, and finding your own personal definition of success.

Watch The Read: Jefferey Spivey now!

Follow Jefferey Spivey on Instagram, Twitter, and more! And buy his book today!

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