The Other Manuscript

Just a day or so ago I mentioned my short story “novella”, Aphrodite’s Twin.  Well, that’s not the only thing I’m working on. I also have a novel I’m jotting down bits and pieces to (and re-writing as I go, sigh).  That one is tentatively titled, “The Other Woman“.  Yes, it’s about a woman, a man, and his wife.  But with my signature ‘twist’ and lesson to be learned.

If you’ve read either (or all) of the last three books I’ve published, you already know what the base lesson is in my writing. For those of you who haven’t, I won’t spoil it here. Just know that I don’t write romances in which the hero rides in and “saves” the heroine.  Oh no.  I leave those fairy tales to the folks at those other, main stream publishing houses. And since I mentioned it, I’d like to take a moment to tell you what else I don’t write.

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Being a Black female, most people assume I write “Urban Fiction”.  That’s a genre I’ve noticed that is dominated by Black authors who write, what I consider, caricatures of stereotypical, inner city Black and Latino people.  The language tends to be littered with profanity and the grammatical missteps inherent in “street slang.”  There are almost always drug dealers, gangstas (*shudder*), and the gold diggin’ women who love them.  Then you have the rich, “bougie” characters who for whatever reasons are somehow related to, or also in love with, the drug dealers and ganstas.  I’m over generalizing here for sure but just as it is in mainstream media (movies, TV shows, rap music, etc.), those in the driver’s seat will only pay money to produce what they’ve deemed as fitting for the genre.   I challenge you to go to any major book store and check out the “Urban Fiction” section (usually all six, small shelves of it) and see what the majority of titles / covers / blurbs offer.

Anyway, that’s not what I write. I’m nowhere near what’s considered as a literary author either. You would be hard pressed to see any of my fiction as “deep” or all that thought-provoking. I admire Alice Walker, Toni Morrison, Octavia Butler and their contemporaries who wrote powerful, intellectual, vocabulary stretching prose.  I rejoice that Niki Giovani, J. California Cooper, and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie are published and widely read in so many diverse circles.  I wish them continued success but I know I’m not that type of writer. My writing, much like my joy, is made of simpler stuff.

I write for women in their late twenties to say, mid fifties…maybe early sixties. These women are most likely in possession of college degrees they are still paying for; they have loved and been heart-broken at least one good time; most are divorced, and some may be in unfulfilled but sturdy relationships.  These are women for whom life hasn’t been easy; they’ve worked or are working hard for their livings. They’re at an age and stage where they are searching for something more, but not on the outside.  They’re shedding what they “should” be, in hopes of “being” wholly, who they are.  It’s this journey of self-awareness, self-discovery, and self-love that I attempt to capture in my work.

I may be writing from a Black female point of view, but I work to make my characters both general enough so that women (readers) of many ethnic backgrounds may relate, but detailed enough so they read as real people.  So far, I’m meeting my mark as the loyal readers I have to date are of several ethnicities, ages, and educational backgrounds. My target audience is well represented in my readership and each book has been enthusiastically received. (It’s a struggle to get them to do reviews, but eh…they’re a quiet bunch 😉 ).

With all of that in mind, The Other Woman will have its share of typical moments, but none of the reality-show, cat fighting and name calling most often found when a man is involved with more than one woman.  Come to think of it – could be why my readership is so low.  Oh well.

Anyway, I’m thinking The Other Woman is going to be this year’s NaNoWriMo project.  It’s never too early to start planning, eh?

So – that means, Aphrodite’s Twin will be a fall 2014 release, and The Other Woman should hit “the shelves” of my rolling book store (a.k.a. my trunk, lol) and my digital bookstore, spring or summer of 2015, giving me six books in circulation since 2008.  Not too bad, if I do say so myself ;-).

Thanks for stopping by.  Till next time…

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