Month: December 2018

Lost in the library: what to read next?

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National Book Club Conference ‘Book of the Year’ Award Winner

From her more than three hundred appearances for film and television, stage and cabaret, performing comedy or drama, as an unforgettable lead or a scene stealing supporting character, Jenifer Lewis has established herself as one of the most respected, admired, talented, and versatile entertainers working today.

This “Mega Diva” and costar of the hit sitcom black-ish bares her soul in this touching and poignant—and at times side-splittingly hilarious—memoir of a Midwestern girl with a dream, whose journey took her from poverty to the big screen, and along the way earned her many accolades.

With candor and warmth, Jenifer Lewis reveals the heart of a woman who lives life to the fullest. This multitalented “force of nature” landed her first Broadway role within eleven days of her graduation from college and later earned the title “Reigning Queen of High-Camp Cabaret.”

In the audaciously honest voice that her fans adore, Jenifer describes her transition to Hollywood, with guest roles on hits like The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Friends. Her movie Jackie’s Back! became a cult favorite, and as the “Mama” to characters portrayed by Whitney Houston, Tupac Shakur, Taraji P. Henson, and many more, Jenifer cemented her status as the “Mother of Black Hollywood.”      

   

When an undiagnosed menatl illness stymies Jenifer’s career, culminating in a breakdown while filming The Temptations, her quest for wholeness becomes a harrowing and inspiring tale, including revelations of bipolar disorder and sex addiction.

Written with no-holds-barred honesty and illustrated with more than forty color photographs, this gripping memoir is filled with insights gained through a unique life that offers a universal message: “Love yourself so that love will not be a stranger when it comes.”

What’s in My Writing Hopper

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Every now and then I want to write the darker side of human nature. I want to dig deep and cut away to bad men who want to be loved. That is why I wrote Blind Date. It was supposed to be a sweet love story, but then I opened a bottle of wine.

I’ve decided to go back to The Company and pull out the rest of the team. However, this time, I’m entering the darkness with a heart warming story of a man at a crossroads in his life and his next decision, will change everything. His code name is Stop.

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” ― Maya Angelou

Every decision may cost you.
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Finding inspiration while on vacation

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I write from a place that I know.

If I don’t know that place, I must go

to that place.

It is said, you never open a story with the weather. Look at that sunrise.

How can I not capture the hues and horizon in words?

I paint a picture with words.

Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don’t see any.” – Orson Scott

I met him in Las Vegaas coming out of the Mirage Hotel. He easily, or rather a modified version of this wonderful man morphed into Pookie Jenkins in Bleu, Grass & Bourbon.

I needed to get away and have some downtime. The librarian and I left the building for a bit of fun in the sun in Nassau. I came back rested and relaxed with loads of new characters in my head and an adventure I will never forget.

Me on the beach in Cozumel. Yeah, I should have gotten my toes done, but in my defense, I was bitten by a spider on my writing retreat. Then the sand got on the nail polish…and the rest is just a lie. I was busy. I just didn’t have time to get my feet done.

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”- Sylvia Plath

Honestly, I got the spider bite at this cabin in Jasper, in Northeast Georgia on our Summer writing retreat. I think the moose is judging me. I can’t even remember where this place was exactly, but I know Siri and I turned down the wrong road. She was like, “Uh- Uh, Girlfriend. You need to turn around or become a statistic!”

Book signing tour for my latest work

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I think one of the hardest parts about being an author is actually getting out there and meeting the readers. Your first thought is what if they hate it? You can’t escape.

However, I have been blessed.

“I believe myself that a good writer doesn’t really need to be told anything except to keep at it.” — Chinua Achebe

From Florida, to New Orleans and home to Birmingham, I got out there and met the readers. I love you all. Thank you for letting me grow into the author I really want to be, and hopefully, I can grow into the writer I was meant to be.

“If the book is true, it will find an audience that is meant to read it.” — Wally Lamb