January 27, 2010

Cheating, Betrayal, Lies with Author Madison

The Writer

Madison Taylor is the definition of hard work. 32 years old and the eldest of three girls, raised in Bronx, NY, I was faced with many personal challenges. Instead of using them as a crutch, it compelled me to finish school to become a lawyer. Through all adversities, I managed to obtain Bachelors in Criminal Justice and I am currently in Graduate school to obtain my MPA in Business Management at John Jay College.

I surmised myself as having a dramatic imagination and writing became my passion hobby. I’ve imagined my story in my head so long, it seemed like I had lived it. I had made so many excuses as to why this wouldn’t work and kept putting it on hold, but I was tired of reading the same stories over and over again and eventually decided my story would bring to the public a creative twist to contemporary fiction.

I want readers to read Scattered Lies and take in the spirit of each character. Many fiction books are written and the story focuses on one character. My book brings you four stories of different lives that deceit brings together through a world wind of unpredictable events. I want readers to see that sometimes we will do anything for self preservation and when it comes to personal happiness nothing is sacred.

A page turner; a dramatic novel that takes us on a unique journey of a different contemporary fiction minus the clichés of the more circulated street tales of sex, money and murder.

Learn more about Madison at Influential Writers Publishing, LLC.

The Book

When four people choose lying as a path to attain their success, they will find that the destiny they wished for is not always guaranteed. Because when...

Denise Taylor, a chameleon, is building a promising future for herself. Aspiring toward the successful life of designer suits and couture shoes, she will learn that the past will pull up alongside you with a vengeance.

Tony Flowers, a successful CEO/Rapper, is on the verge of becoming the Bill Gates of the music industry. He forces you to explore the way excess erodes our sense of satisfaction. Deceitful, manipulative, and living with the secret of his ultimate act of betrayal, he discovers that some lies are worth dying for.

Gabrielle Brightman is an upscale, sophisticated, resilient young woman. She didn’t become a powerful attorney without making many sacrifices. While running her own small practice, she earned a reputation for taking on controversial clients. Nevertheless, she will embark on the biggest challenge of her life.

Morgan Marciano is a naïve, gorgeous, yet optimistic young lady with a prominent future, but she will encounter the worst evil of all.

All will realize that when they lie, all that’s left are Scattered Lies.

Scattered Lies tells a riveting story of scandals, half truths, and ultimate triumph. It will take you on an unpredictable ride through real life, where lies are the reality of the truth.

Click the cover above to order your copy of SCATTERED LIES today!

Cheating, Betrayal, Lies

I selected you as an AtBaP featured author because your latest book dabbles in the topic of the month - lying, cheating, betrayals. Tell me, why (or how) did you find yourself developing your story around this topic?
Scattered Lies was written after years of witnessing the ills of human nature. I took into account my own determinations and realized that sometimes we will exceed our own expectations and stop at nothing to maintain self preservation even at the unfortunate expense of others.

I almost liken the complexity of lies and cheating to that of a murder mystery. In a mystery, there are always so many layers woven in the story in order to create those twists and turns and whodunit moments. When writing your novel, how intricate, complex were you in developing the weaves of lies and betrayals?
When I began establishing my characters, I kept reminding myself of “real life.” While creating an atmosphere of suspense was easy, the shock factor is what I used to distinguish my book from the mainstream sex, money and murder clichés. In the movie, Sliding Doors with Gwyneth Paltrow, Paltrow’s character lived the same day everyday but each day she made a different decision for the same situations. The complexity of the story forced you to see how decisions shape our realities into very complex circumstances.

Also, instead of focusing on one character, I introduce my readers to four very different people. Each one’s story somehow connecting to the other generates a more volatile intensity to the overall development of the plot. This will keep the readers engrossed wondering how it will all come to a cataclysmic conclusion.

The lies. The cheating. The betrayals. They are all a part of someone's "dirt," and people seem to be all too happy to immerse themselves in others' dirt. Why do you think readers are so fascinated with the tawdry side of characters?
There are a lot of reasons why people are drawn to others people’s problems. At some point everyone wants to escape their own reality. Sometimes immersing yourself in other people’s misfortunes makes you realize your troubles are not that bad or it makes them feel better about themselves. Also, for some reason, as much as we hate to admit it, we love drama. It gives us a sensation that can’t be replaced with anything else. We gravitate towards it as justification for our own moral deficiencies. How many times do you say to yourself, “It’s not so bad if everybody is doing it”?

Personally, what's the worst thing someone can lie about, and why?
Personally, once someone lies to me, I can no longer trust them. I think the worst thing someone could lie about is their loyalty to you. I find myself losing associates because I believed their alliance to me, to find out they didn’t really care for me or my well being. I think this is the worst thing you can lie about because when you are at your lowest point, your alliances are what you count on most, then to realize at that fateful moment that you are alone is like the worst feeling in the world.

Throughout Scattered Lies, readers will relate to the relationship between Denise and Tony. We’ve all had, or so we thought, that ‘friend ‘til the end’ until that day of reckoning presents itself and you realize how vulnerable you have made yourself.

Think about all the books you've read and enjoyed; what character has been the biggest liar, cheater, and betrayal artist, and why?
Of course, for me it would be Tony Flowers. With working on my book, I haven’t had the opportunity to read many books lately. However, Tony’s betrayal is the worst of the worst. It’s not only his betrayal to Denise, but his betrayal to everyone in his life. His demons have triggered the most evils of all the characters.

A Taste of Fiction

From Scattered Lies' Chapter Five...

Denise has to meet up with an old skeleton out of her closet that she was sure was tucked away for good...

Just when Denise got ready to head out to the conference room, she heard her cell phone ringing. Damn, I didn’t put it on vibrate.

“Hello,” she answered.

“Dee, what’s up? It’s Felicia. We need to meet ASAP. Some shit jumped off. Meet me at Wendy’s on Broadway,” Felicia ordered. Back in the day, Felicia and Denise were hitmen for Greg and had done a lot of shit together.

“A’ight! It better not be any bullshit, for real,” Denise warned.

“I wish! One o’clock is good for me. Is that cool for you?” Felicia asked.

“It’s good,” she replied. What the fuck has Felicia done now? She better not be up to no shit.

After the conference was over, Denise jetted out to meet Felicia. Since Wendy’s was only three blocks from her job, Denise walked there. When she arrived, she didn’t see Felicia.

So she went to the upper level, where she found her sitting in the corner. After they kissed and hugged, Felicia got right down to it. “Remember that hit out of town we did…them guys in the car?” Felicia whispered.

Denise gave her a clueless look. They had done so much shit together that Denise didn’t know which time she was talking about.

Felicia frowned. “Dee, that shit we took care of for Tony…them dudes in the car. Remember? They were coming from the strip club.”

“Oh, that shit…yeah…what about it?” Denise asked, as she popped some of Felicia’s fries in her mouth.

“You know coke head Kim? Well, she was fucking with the nigga’s cousin and she told him we killed them. Dude isn’t built like that, so he told her that he wants five hundred thousand in cash or he’s going to the police,” Felicia whispered.

Denise dropped her head. This wasn’t her fucking day. How the fuck does Kim know about the killings? She wasn’t even in B-more when the shit took place. Something isn’t right. I know I covered all my tracks.

“It doesn’t make sense. Those dudes were from out of town. How did Kim hook up with the dude’s cousin? And he wants five hundred thousand from where?” Denise asked, while shaking her head.

Felicia sucked her teeth. “Dee, he’s not playing.”

“When does he want the money?” Denise asked.

Felicia stared at Denise to see if she expressed any emotions, but Denise hid her expression.

“Like yesterday, so what are we gonna do? I don’t have any bread like that. They know Greg ordered the hit,” Felicia mumbled.

“Tell them to give you a few weeks and you will have it,” Denise said as she rose from the table.

Felicia pulled her back down. “Dee, they are serious. I can’t go to prison.”

“Neither can I,” Denise replied, then walked out.

Denise was upset; she didn’t tolerate extortion. She needed to reach out to Perry and find out what else Kim knew. But first, she needed to holler at Greg.

When she got back to her office, she informed Maria that she would be taking the next day off. Denise didn’t believe in wasting time with things this serious.

It was 5:00 p.m., and Denise couldn’t wait to leave. Felicia had ruined her day. Just when she thought she was done with that lifestyle, it was pulling up alongside her with a vengeance.

Denise woke up early the next morning, took a shower, got dressed, and was out the door before Morgan woke up. She jumped in her Range Rover and headed up to Elmira Correctional Facility to see Greg. Gabrielle is a strong bitch to troop this shit every weekend, she thought to herself. The drive alone is too much for me, and it’s only four hours.

Denise parked her car outside of the facility and walked in. Being that it was a weekday, it wasn’t packed. After they verified Denise’s ID, they took her to the visiting room.

While she waited, she went to the vending machine and purchased some frozen chicken wings, a breakfast sandwich, and a beverage. Since she wasn’t sure what Greg wanted, she got one of everything.

On her way back into the visiting room, she saw Greg sitting at the table brushing something off his shirt and straightening his clothes. Greg hadn’t changed; he still had that swag. Greg didn’t like surprises, but he was happy to see Denise, who he hadn’t seen in years. Even though it was good to see his little sister, he knew better. If Denise came up to see him, something was wrong.

Denise reached out to hug him. “What’s with the smirk?”

Click the cover above to order your copy of SCATTERED LIES today!

January 23, 2010

Cheating, Betrayal, Lies with Author Dwayne S. Joseph

The Writer

Dwayne S. Joseph began his writing career at the age of thirteen. Commandeering his parent’s computer, he sat for hours on end creating dramatic stories of fiction that earned him the “best storyteller in the Joseph household” moniker. He then went on to win second place in the National Scholastic Writing Competition during his senior year in high school for a short story he wrote, titled “Playtime” (A story that he does plan to develop into a children’s tale someday soon!) The novels at thirteen and the short story in his senior year all helped to propel him on the destined path to becoming a published author at the age of 27, with the release of his first novel The Choices Men Make.

With seven drama-filled novels under his belt, including The Womanizers, Never Say Never, If Your Girl Only Knew, In Too Deep, Til It’s Gone, and short story contributions to four anthology collections, most notably, the Essence best seller, Around The Way Girls, Dwayne has consistently set out to entertain his readers with scenarios and characters that they love and love to hate.

It’s all about growth for Mr. Joseph. He strives to grow and improve with each novel because he feels that’s what the readers deserve. And that’s just what he is determined to do as he is now taking a walk down a much different literary path with the release of his latest two novels, Home Wrecker and Betrayal—darker novels filled with more suspense, more intensity, more violence, more mystery and sex.

With half of his life spent in Brooklyn, New York, the other half spent in Harrisburg, PA, Dwayne now calls Maryland his home where he lives with his wife and three children, where they never fail to wear their New York Giants jerseys every Sunday during the football season! He is currently hard at work on his next novel, Eye for an Eye, the explosive revenge sequel to Home Wrecker, which has been optioned for film or a television series. He is also working on a romantic suspense novel for 2011.

The Book

How could she, after all I've done for her?

This is the thought racing through Zeke's mind as he stares at the evidence of his wife's infidelity. The photos were sent to him anonymously and Zeke doesn't quite know how to handle the devastating news—until he catches his son in a compromising position and hatches a plan.

Sam has always been grateful for the opportunities given to him by his father-in-law, who saved him from a life in the streets. But how far is he willing to go now that Zeke is threatening to expose his secret? In order to hold on to everything he has, can Sam bring himself to commit murder?

Betrayal is Dwayne S. Joseph's most ambitious novel to date, and is sure to have your heart racing!

Betrayal is an intense thriller of the best kind. Each page brought one pounding heartbeat after the other, and the climactic ending left me in a cold sweat. Dwayne S. Joseph has demonstrated his literary prowess and surpassed the competition with this one!” —National bestselling author La Jill Hunt

“Dwayne is back with yet another page turner that is sure to be a winner. If you aren’t a lifelong fan, you will be when you’re done reading Betrayal.” —Anna J, bestselling author of My Little Secret

Click the cover above to order your copy of BETRAYAL today!

Cheating, Betrayal, Lies

Tell me, why (or how) did you find yourself developing your story around this topic?
Betrayal just really came to me one day as I was trying to come up with something different. I didn't want to do the usual relationship drama as I had done in the past. I wanted something darker, more intense, more suspenseful. One day, as thoughts were running through my mind, the idea just literally popped into my head... "what if a husband wanted to have his wife killed" If so.. why? The ideas and characters all developed from there.

I almost liken the complexity of lies and cheating to that of a murder mystery. In a mystery, there is always so many layers woven in the story in order to create those twists and turns and whodunit moments. When writing your novel, how intricate, complex were you in developing the weaves of lies and betrayals?
I'm one of those authors who never plan out my book before I write it. A lot of the twists and turns in the book happen literally because I don't know they are going to happen. I like to let the characters come to life and tell me what's going to happen. In a lot of ways, as I write, it's like watching a movie. I will say that as everything happens, I do make it a point to make sure I give readers a "wow" or a "surprise" factor. That certainly happened with Betrayal!

The lies. The cheating. The betrayals. They are all a part of someone's "dirt," and people seem to be all too happy to immerse themselves in others' dirt. Why do you think readers are so fascinated with the tawdry side of characters?
Who doesn't like other people's drama? LOL. I think it's fascinating for readers to get into the "darker" sides of the characters because it's not typical. I think in some ways readers are able to live vicariously through the "darker" characters. Often times they do and say things that readers won't do, but sometimes would love to do! LOL.

Personally, what's the worst thing someone can lie about, and why?
I'd say lying about something happening to family or friends. I'm superstitious about that.

Think about all the books you've read and enjoyed; what character has been the biggest liar, cheater, and betrayal artist, and why?
Wow.. that's tough.. too many to name as I read many, many different types of books. I'll go with the three main characters in my book Betrayal, Zeke, Sapphire and Jewell, because their lies and betrayals had a profound effect on the outcome of the novel.

A Taste of Fiction

From Betrayal...

“I want you to kill my wife.”

Ezekiel hadn’t expected the words to have flown so freely from his mouth. Smooth. No hesitation. Silk, the way it had come out.

I want you to kill my wife.

He sat back in his chair and watched his son-in-law, Sam, digest the seven fluid words he’d spoken.

I want you to kill my wife.

Air sighed evenly through his nostrils and down to his lungs, where it swirled around momentarily before rising back up and passing back out through his nasal passages. For the first time in a week, breathing didn’t hurt his chest. For the first time in eleven days, the weight which had been bearing down on his shoulders, lessened. It wasn’t much, but it was just enough. He wanted his wife killed. Dead. Gone. Extinct. He intertwined his fingers in his lap.

Sam stared at him, his forehead knotted up. Zeke saw the struggle. The confusion doing the jitterbug with disbelief and fear in his eyes.

“You’re kidding right?”

Sam stared at his father-in-law as his father-in-law stared back at him, a chill creeping up from the base of his spine to the back of his neck. Ezekiel had yet to respond, but in his eyes Sam saw an answer that made his throat dry. He cleared it and said again, “Zeke…you’re…you’re kidding right?”

Zeke looked at Sam and still wouldn’t respond. He just stared and read Sam’s thoughts through the pleading in his eyes. He wanted him to smile and break out in laughter. He wanted him to say that he was indeed kidding.

Ten days ago that would have been the case.

The earth hadn’t rotated off of its axis yet. The stars hadn’t fallen out of the sky. A cow hadn’t jumped over the moon. Pigs hadn’t yet learned to fly.

Eleven days ago, his world hadn’t been turned upside down.

It was a Thursday. It had been cold. The March wind had been brutal and unkind. But it had been sunny and bright, and there had been no snow on the ground.

But then came Friday.

Snow still hadn’t fallen, but the sun had been taken hostage by black clouds, moving ominously in the sky. There wind was gone, but the air’s vicious bite remained.

Zeke said, “Do you know me to kid around, Sam?”

Sam clenched his jaws, squinted his eyes a bit. “You can’t be serious.”

“I’m very serious, Sam.”

Sam shook his head. “Come on, Zeke. This shit’s not funny.”

“I told you, I’m not making any jokes.”

“No way,” Sam said, cracking his knuckles. “No way at all that you’re not fucking with me.”

“Is there a problem?”

“Is there a...” Sam paused and shook his head again. “You’re talking about killing your wife. Shit, you’re talking about me killing your wife. For real…have you lost your fucking mind? Because this shit is crazy, Zeke. The shit coming out of your mouth right now is crazy.”

Zeke locked his eyes on Sam’s. His back remained flat against the leather of his chair. His breathing remained steady. “I’m not crazy,” he said. “And this isn’t crazy. This is what it’s going to take to keep me from ruining your life.”

Sam looked at Zeke intensely, looking for craziness in his father-in-law’s eyes. He cracked a few more knuckles. Cleared his throat. Said, “Zeke…come on…”

Zeke cut him off. “I walked in on you fucking our intern, Sam.”

Sam dragged his hand down over his face, leaned forward in the chair he’d been sitting in and rested his elbows on his knees. “Come on, Zeke. It was a mistake. It didn’t mean anything.”

“I don’t give a shit whether it meant anything or not, Sam. You fucked around on my little girl!”

Sam sat back uncomfortably in the chair. He exhaled. “I…I know and I’m sorry, Zeke. Believe me when I say I regret it.”

Zeke flared his nostrils. He could feel the control slipping away. Bruce Banner was threatening to disappear and leave Sam alone with the Incredible Hulk, who wanted nothing more than to reach across the desk and wrap his thick fingers around Sam’s throat and squeeze until Sam too was extinct.

Eleven days ago.

A Friday.

Zeke received an anonymous package at his office.

A manila envelope with photographs of his wife fucking another man.

She was straddled atop her partner, her back to him. The photographer had skill and one hell of a camera. They’d captured the divine, fulfilled ecstasy plastered on Zeke’s wife’s face beautifully. The way she’d bitten down on her bottom lip. The way her eyes had been rolling into the back of her head. The way she’d been grabbing her breasts and squeezing her nipples.

Zeke had always had a voyeuristic nature about him and had it been anyone else in the photo, he would have unzipped his pants, pulled out his dick and stroked until he exploded all over the expensive photo paper, imagining that his cum were actually being spilled on her breasts, her ass, in her mouth.

But it hadn’t been anyone else.

It had been his wife.

And she was enjoying another man’s dick.

After looking at the photographs, he threw up whatever food he’d eaten that day. He dry heaved when he had nothing left.

He looked at the pictures again. Maybe his eyes had been playing tricks on him. He had been working longer hours preparing for another opening. Maybe the fatigue had fucked with his head and helped create an image that hadn’t been real. The sickest kind of mirage.

He stared at the pictures. Waited for the image to change as he rifled through them. Waited for the image to fade away the way a pool of fresh water in the middle of the desert did when the sun was at its unbearably highest point.

He waited.

And waited.

And waited some more.

Then he gagged, dry heaved again.

Unlike the water that disappeared just before you ate sand, the image of his wife on top of another man had no disappearing act.
Zeke went over the manila envelope looking for a name, an address…something letting him know who had sent the pictures. He looked at the back of each 8x11 glossed copy.

No name.

No insignia.

No coded message viewable under the light or in the dark.

For hours he sat with the photographs spread out before him, his mind working, wondering, questioning.


He thought back to the last time they’d made love. Loving words were spoken, tender caresses and gentle kisses given. All seemed right with the world, despite their sparse sex life. Had that been the reason for his wife’s infidelity? Had his hectic work schedule pushed her into another man’s arms?

Hours passed. Zeke just sat. Unmoving. Barely breathing. Just staring.

His wife.

The woman he loved more than life itself.

He stared at her long and hard. He would have been staring at the man too, but his face hadn’t been captured in any of the photos. Unless the photographer was the man himself, which Zeke doubted, then the photographer was sending a clear message that the man didn’t matter. It could have been any man.

Zeke stared.

At his wife.

At the pleasure in her beautiful face, which had instantaneously become as ugly as sin to him. His temples throbbed with a sharp pain as questions rand through his mind.

Who had sent the pictures?

More importantly—why?

Were they trying to punish him? Punish her? Punish them both?

What was their motive?

Was another package on the way?

Would it be worse?

Hell, could it possibly have been any worse than what he had already received?

It was nearly one in the morning before he slid the photos back into the envelope and then put the envelope in his briefcase and headed home, his head and heart aching. During the entire forty-five minute drive, he kept asking himself what the hell he was going to do when he got home. Would he throw the photos in his wife’s face and demand to know who the fuck she’d been riding? Would he threaten her and throw her out of the house? Would he lose it, say to hell with the threat, and just put his hands on her? He didn’t know.

He was pissed.


Felt damn near homicidal.

He strangled his steering wheel and drove at speeds above ninety miles an hour on the sparse New Jersey Turnpike. Fortunately for him and his wife, he was pulled over by the finest in highway patrol. The twenty minute delay had given his common sense just enough of a chance to catch up to the rage that had him rocketing towards an OJ Simpson like home arrival.

Sitting with red and blue flashing lights spiraling behind him, he calmed down enough to rationalize that, one, he didn’t want to go to jail, and two, that ending his marriage meant splitting his money with a lying, cheating bitch.

It wasn’t easy, but with the three hundred dollar ticket thrown beside him, he went home that night and somehow managed to pretend as though he’d never received the anonymous package.

The next day was incredibly difficult for him, as he flip-flopped emotionally throughout the day, going from sadness to hate to rage, and then back to sadness, back to hate, back to rage. Only by staying away from the house for sixteen of the twenty-four hours in the day, and then sleeping in his home office for the final eight, had he been able to make it to Sunday. On Sunday, after a hypocritical appearance at church, he went to the office to be alone. Sadness had disappeared and hate and rage were the only emotions coursing through him.

He had to get away. He couldn’t handle being close to her. He couldn’t look at her anymore. He couldn’t take the sound of her voice. The phoniness in it. He couldn’t handle the smell of her Victoria Secret’s perfume. One he’d bought for her. Sunday he avoided committing murder by going to the office to be alone to think.

Thirty-four years.

How many of them had she been living a lie?

How many of them had he been played for a fool?

Damn those photos. Damn whoever had sent them.

She’d been his everything. His first and what would be his last true love. She betrayed him. Betrayed his trust. His devotion. Before the photos he loved and respected her.
After the photos…after the photos, love resigned and hate took its place in his heart, beside a small section occupied by heartache.

He needed to figure out what his next move would be. They had a life together. They’d raised a daughter. They’d created memories. Memories that he wished he could forget. He had to have her out of his life, because there just was no forgiving her.

But how?


At the office alone.

He’d been hoping for some sort of an answer that day. A way to remain latched on by the fingertips of one hand to the edge of the cliff. That day, he found, in Sam’s office, the answer he needed to help him grab hold of the cliff with his other hand. Five days later, he was halfway to pulling himself back to salvation. Or losing his sanity. It all depended on which mirror in the spectrum one was looking through.

Click the cover above to order your copy of BETRAYAL today!

January 13, 2010

Cheating, Betrayal, Lies with Author Tamika Newhouse

The Writer

Tamika Newhouse is the best selling author of The Ultimate No No. She is also known as the creator and President of African Americans on the Move Book Club, which is an online book club catering to avid readers across the nation. She is currently the Editor of Step Up Sista Magazine and literary consultant. In March 2009 Tamika was announced the Women of the Year by Alive Magazine and nominated as Best Radio Personality by the Black Book Clubs Rock Awards. As well as the African American Literary Awards awarded her, Tamika became Self Published Author of the Year in less then a year after the release of her first novel.

Tamika made her publishing debut under the AAMBC Publications, which will publish anthologies showcasing various authors’ talents. She is currently the CEO of Delphine Publications and has the vision of building a powerful company.

Tamika can be heard on the syndicated AAMBC Radio, where she interviews new and seasoned authors. The show showcases many of the author’s talents and their current projects.
Tamika created the national tour group called Literary Sistah's, where she and authors tour all over the nation. She is currently living in San Antonio with her husband, son, and daughter. She released her second book The Ultimate Moment No Regrets in September 2009 and is currently working on her third novel Cookie: A Fort Worth Story. She plans to release her fourth novel He Was a Bad Idea in Fall of 2010.

The Books

When Dahlia decides to get even with a man named Troy who broke her heart, she thinks of a master plan. To her dismay after, asking Nitrah, her best friend to help her get even, she falls in love with Troy. Not only does this cause a huge rift, but now the ladies must soon face the fact that they both have lied and their secrets will be unveiled. Troy thinks he has finally found true love with Nitrah, but what will happen when he finds out their relationship is based on a lie? Love, sex, deceit, and betrayal abound in The Ultimate NO NO

Click the cover above to order your copy of THE ULTIMATE NO NO today!

The famed characters from The Ultimate NO NO are back and are still searching for love. The scam Nitrah and Dahlia created was just the beginning of their heartaches. Now time has past and the ladies are back for round two. Nitrah has decided to move on with her life and even took a new step in her career, but as soon as she moves on, Troy comes back to Fort Worth. Not only does Nitrah face Troy, she also will faces the past when Michael is back to start a committed relationship with her. She is now torn between the two, and you won't believe who she chooses. Jazzaray and Tim are now married. But aren't you supposed to be living the happily ever after now? Well that isn't the case when Jazzaray and Tim both face many turmoils that will test them in some of the most difficult ways. Now, Monica who turns out to be a predator for married men will make it her mission to make Tim all hers. Will Tim and Jazzaray's relationship survive or did they jump the broom too soon. Finally, will Dahlia find true love with the man who got away? Can she finally let go of the past with Troy. Things for her become worse before they get better and as you expect for her to finally get her prince charming, her life takes a unexpected twist that you will be shocked to see how it all ends. Are all her sisters' secrets really out of the closet? Can these women finally find true love and stop playing with people's hearts? They will all come face to face with their problems in their final Moments, and in the end they must make a choice and have No Regrets in the end. It's now or never!

Click the cover above to order your copy of The Ultimate Moment No Regrets today!

Cheating, Betrayal, Lies

I selected you as an AtBaP featured author because your latest book dabbles in the topic of the month - lying, cheating, betrayals. Tell me, why (or how) did you find yourself developing your story around this topic?
I love to be in love. I am sure everyone else has that same feeling. No one truly wants to be alone, so when I write it usually is surrounded around the topic of Love. But one thing with me is that I have never witnessed a perfect relationship where there wasn’t any drama. The fact is when you fall in love you have to work at staying in love. I developed my characters in The Ultimate NO NO by simply have them search for love. However, when you place a web of lies and deceit in the mix, things do get sticky.

I almost liken the complexity of lies and cheating to that of a murder mystery. In a mystery, there is always so many layers woven in the story in order to create those twists and turns and whodunit moments. When writing your novel, how intricate, complex were you in developing the weaves of lies and betrayals?
The web of lies in my novel was some I knew had to be hidden until I revealed them. In real life people go through strong lengths to make sure their skeletons don’t fall out of the closet. I needed my readers to be so deep into the story that when the lies surfaced they would have been shocked out of their minds. It wasn’t hard in creating the lies because half of them I thought of as I wrote the novel.

The lies. The cheating. The betrayals. They are all a part of someone's "dirt," and people seem to be all too happy to immerse themselves in others' dirt. Why do you think readers are so fascinated with the tawdry side of characters?
People may not admit it, but they love the dirt, the gossip of the juicy details. Although if it were them, they would think differently, but people are just nosy. They have to have the scoop in order to feel good about knowing someone else’s dirt. Subconsciously I think that if we see someone else’s dirt, we feel that we have one up on them, or that we are better than that. So when we hear or read about some “dirt” on other people, it is all too exciting. This is why the media sheds light on the bad news versus a great triumph.

Personally, what's the worst thing someone can lie about, and why?
Cheating to me is one of the most deadly things you could do in your life, to yourself or to someone you love. Some people have a urge to be with others sexually and although this may not seem all bad, things can transpire because of someone cheating. You have seen many stories of women scorn who kill, attack, or harm their cheating spouses. You also see stories of people who contracted AIDS or HIV. These are the serious and deadly side effects of cheating. But also you may lose the person you love if they choose not to forgive you. When you think about the idea of cheating, think about the outcome. Is that passion really worth it? In my novel, The Ultimate NO NO, a character becomes pregnant by her sister's boyfriend. In the end, her sister cuts her out of her life, and the boyfriend doesn’t take care of the child. Now, was that worth it?

Think about all the books you've read and enjoyed; what character has been the biggest liar, cheater, and betrayal artist, and why?
To me most of the books contain a cheating man. I find this interesting because from a woman’s POV, a lady cheats as well. There aren’t many topics in books about the woman being the villain. It is believed that women cheat more than men, they just don’t get caught. This could be true, but I think a male is perceived the cheater the majority of the time because most women who write romance novels can relate to that topic. In The Ultimate NO NO, my main character cheats and has more than one relationship. Not because she is cold hearted, but because she is torn between the two men.

A Taste of Fiction

From The Ultimate NO NO...

Nitrah Hill

I only wanted a quick fix, and now I’m stuck on what to do next. It’s been three long years and nothing but pure, unadulterated drama. I hadn’t expected things to turn out the way they did, especially since my friendships were on the line. But, no, I had to say yes, and commit to something I knew I would regret. All I wanted to do was help my friend. Dahlia approached me with this bright idea, but I didn’t expect it to go as far as it did. What she asked me to do was like nothing I’d ever done before. At first, I thought it would be harmless. You know that “pay back is a bitch” kind of thing. Yeah, right!

My subject was Troy, short for Troyon—local gigolo of Fort Worth and the headmaster of heartbreak. You see, he’d hurt so many women, including Dahlia, we wanted to give him a taste of his own medicine. However, Troy Washington was no joke. Yet, my girls and I needed to break him down a little. Teach him a lesson. He needed to know how it felt to be cheated on, to have a broken heart, to have his mind twisted and, definitely, he had to know how it felt to love a cheater. Why was I the chosen one? It beats the hell out of me. But, just call me Superwoman; always coming to the aid of my girlfriends, who somehow always found themselves in some shit.

Troy had a brother, Robert, and a best friend, Tim. Although they hung out with Troy, they weren’t heartbreakers. Now, I still don’t know why my girls chose me to do their dirty work nor do I know why I suckered up and agreed to do it. However, there was one thing I did know, if nothing else. I knew I was playing with fire. Still, in the end it could have helped plenty of women. Okay, at least that’s what I kept telling myself.

From the kiss to the fight, from Dahlia’s screams to the truth being revealed; I constantly shake my head at this whole mess, and thinking about everything that happened, simply because my dumb ass said yes. Ugh! I used to hear my friend’s laughter when thinking about the old days; what I would do to get those days back. How we would go to the lake and pull phone numbers. Get our hair done and buy new outfits, simply to impress. Nevertheless, as I sigh heavily, I realize that all changed the moment I said yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. The three-letter word ended up being the death sentence for our friendship. All of our lives changed. I just didn’t know if it was for the best or for the worst.

January 6, 2010

Poem - The Genesis of Storytelling

In the beginning, there was an image,
and it was good.

On day one, the image stirred you,
wrestled with your psyche, and evoked
emotions that had lain dormant. You
carried that image, like a baby
pic in a wallet, pulling it out to show
others as you smiled – the proud parent.

On day two, like a journalist, questions
flowed from your mind –
who this image,
what this image,
when this image,
where this image,
how this image,
why this image,
until whole humans formed in your mind,
their eyes vibrant blue or brooding brown,
their limbs movable,
their minds full of angst and yearning,
just the things good stories
are made of.

On day three, you retrieve the image and
see these humans walking about you,
their mouths moving, but nothing being heard
until your anxiety dissipates, then voices,
soft murmuring voices that tickle your ear
tell you that they are ready to be written.

On day four, image taped to side of laptop,
humans crowd around you, voices sing
a dissonant tune like a fork scraping a metal pan,
but you calm yourself, yet again, channel the
anxiety, eradicate the “is the idea good”,
eliminate the editor, and funnel your thoughts
into one question: “What’s the best way to
begin this thing?”

On day five, you stop, the dissonance so loud
you can taste it in your mouth, sour like curdled
milk. Before you, long stretches of nothing lie,
with only the tips of the ending seen just beyond
the horizon. You bang the desk, you stand, you
pace, you hear the footsteps of humans, hear
the voices of humans, and you wonder how you
will travel the width of your middle wasteland
and tell a story that’s worth reading. In the middle
of the night, as snores make their escape, you will
jolt from the bed, race to your laptop, smile because
it’s on and still warm, and you will write the conflict,
the tension that was always inside you, waiting for
its release.

On day six, you can barely catch your
breath as you and the humans you have birthed
take your time heading to the last page. You know,
on the smallest scale imaginable, what it’s like to
create a life – far beyond that of just being a mother
or father, for you have giving life, and you have set the
stage for that life, and now you must lay the life to rest.
Living, breathing, real, they touch you, pleading with
you, asking you, “Can there be a sequel,” but you know
this one is finished. The last period will be the last
period. And when that last period is placed, you sit
back, take a deep breath, shed a tear, and think, “I
think I’ve done them justice.”

On day seven, you rest, fingers sore, carpel tunnel
flaring, mind spent. You’re proud, for you have
taking that one image – the same image you hold
in your hand now – and created a world filled with
lives and scenarios and trials and grief and joy and
wonder and closure. As you close your eyes,
ready for the nap you haven’t allowed yourself to
have since the image burned into your memory,
you sit up with a start: “I need to go back and rework
the beginning. Doesn’t have enough punch.”

And…on the eighth day, the new beginning,

January 4, 2010

A PULL to Write ~~ A Question from a CLG Fan

Recently, a fan of CLG Entertainment and The Write Life for You articles I write contacted me. The fan, a writer, asked, "How do you know if you have the talent to pursue writing? Words have always had a powerful pull on me, but I don't know if I can actually write ... Do you have medicine for my affliction?"

I wanted to share my response because I think it might be beneficial to those of you out there feeling, thinking the same thing.

You know, the need to pursue writing often comes before one even KNOWS if he or she has talent. It comes from a desire, a need to express something. The fact that you're pulled to write is BIG. For me, writing was always a NEED. Started writing when I was 10, and it was all about looking at the world and writing what interest me, then what I didn't understand, then what I hated, then what I wanted to be made right, and on and on.

That pull to write is important because it will warm your heart when you're rejected, it will urge you on when you receive criticism, and it will move you to want to learn so that you can better your craft.

First and foremost, I think you need to KEEP the pull. Recognize it. Communicate with it. Nurture it.

Allow the pull to keep you writing.

As you write, think about what you seem "called" to write about. This calling isn't set in stone, but it's a great place to begin to think about who you are as a writer and what you hope to convey in your writing.

As you write, READ. Read works you deem "good," and be able to illustrate to yourself why they are good and what you can glean from these findings for your own writing.

As you write, READ. Read works you deem "bad," and be able to illustrate to yourself why they might be bad and what you can glean from these findings for your own writing.

As you write, READ. Read works about writing, especially those books that delve into the issues you find you make consistently in your work. You want as many tools in your writer's toolbox as possible.

Connect with other writers, especially those willing to read and critique your work. It's important to know what you want to get out of a critique group and what you can bring to that group; you do not just want to jump into a group and wallow within it. And be open to constructive criticism.

And almost as important as your writing these days is your platform - who you are, what you stand for, how your writing reflects this, who you connect with, network with, how you BRAND yourself.

But ultimately, I think it is about the PULL. If you don't feel moved to write, who will be compelled to read WHAT you write?