Category Archives: virtual blog tour

5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… Wanda B. Campbell, author of Right Package Wrong Baggage Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
Wanda B. Campbell, author of Right Package Wrong Baggage
(Urban Christian/ Kengsington)

For five years, Pamela Roberts has balanced the demands of being a single mother and a devoted Christian. She unselfishly places the needs of her son, Matthew, above her own. Although she tries to convince everyone that she’s happy with Jesus alone, Matthew handpicks the perfect present for her—a husband. Everything about the man her son chooses is perfect, except for his past.

Micah Stevenson is excited when he learns the son of the woman he has been praying about wants him to join their family permanently. Believing Pamela Roberts is his soul mate sent from God, Micah pursues her. Once he is certain of her love for him, Micah reveals his dark history, shaking the foundation of the once loving and stable relationship. Trust is broken as judgments and prejudices threaten to deny the couple’s destiny.

Will the man he used to be prevent Pamela from loving Micah for the man he is now?

Joey Pinkney: Where did you get the idea and inspiration to write Right Package Wrong Baggage?

Wanda Campbell: Without giving away too much of the “baggage”, my main inspiration in writing this story were the prejudices and stereotypes I have witnessed Continue reading 5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… Wanda B. Campbell, author of Right Package Wrong Baggage

5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… Corey Barnes, author of What Is This Love Thing All About Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
Corey Barnes, author of What Is This Love Thing All About?
(CJ Publishing)

(One of the first ten people to comment on Corey Barnes’ author interview will win a free copy of What Is This Love Thing About.)

(Congratulations Lena! She won a free copy of Corey Barnes’ What Is This Love Thing About.)

Meet Rick Jenkins, who has everything that most would love to have in life. Great job, great looks, well educated, money, he has it all, except for one thing – a woman to share it with. A single and eligible bachelor, Rick can’t seem to even find a good woman to go on a date with, much less to think about take it to the next level. Rick is content to take life as it is until one night at a sorority fund raising function, he runs into Aphrodite Morrison and his fate changes forever.

Aphrodite is a mysterious, yet angelic, woman who Rick is lost for from the first minute he talks to her. A partner in one of the top advertising companies in the Greater Atlanta area, she does not have a want for anything. There is another side to Aphrodite that looms under the surface. When she thinks she has met the perfect man, her past threatens everything that she thinks may be meant for her and happening with Rick.

Joey Pinkney: When did you get the idea/inspiration to write What Is This Love Thing All About?

Corey Barnes: I love to read. I try to read at least two novels per month, which is hard with my schedule. I have read some very good books, and I have also read some very bad ones.

A little while ago, when I was reading a bad one, I made the comment to a friend of mine that I could write something better than this mess if I put my mind to it and put in the time. My friend, being the woman that she is, tells me to go ahead and do it.

Basically, don’t talk about it, be about it. After that, I just began to play around with it and before long, I was on my way.

JP: What elements of Black Love will we find in this novel that will set it apart from other novels in its genre?

CB: What is different in What Is This Love Thing All About? from other novels in its genre is the return of the pursuit, of the thrill of the chase. Nowadays, most books in this genre are dripping with sex, one night stands and basically “wham, bam, thank you ma’am”.

In my book, I almost go back to my granddad’s day when a man did not mind letting a woman know how he felt about her. He showed her. If he was interested, if he thought she was worth the fuss, he would do anything in his power to show her and to get her.

Men back then showed their feelings and were great communicators, things that society say a man can’t do or be nowadays. In What Is This Love Thing All About? all these things are readily apparent and that is what sets it apart from other books in its genre.

JP: What have you learned from writing and developing What Is This Love Thing All About? that you will be able to apply to your next release?

CB: For my next book, I will be sure to get someone to read over it early besides myself. Being in the school system, I consider myself to be a pretty good editor since I do it all the time.

As I read through my first draft, I thought everything flowed well. When I sent it out to a couple of friends, they noticed I had some gaps as I only had told my story from one point of view. Once I looked at it, I saw that they right.

I went back and basically wrote in the female character and made it tight. I will be sure to get feedback early and make sure I tell the story I want to from all angles to give the reader the full effect the next time.

JP: As an author, what is your writing process? How long did it take for you, start to finish for What Is This Love Thing All About?

CB: I always keep a stenograph pad with me no matter where I go. When I go to work out at the gym or run the lake or at basketball practice, whatever, I take note cards. I always have a pen, as I never know when a thought may hit me.

I try to write situations and scenes. I like for there to be a flow and leave the reader ready for the next chapter, the next piece to the puzzle. There are some nights where I sit and write for hours and some nights I just don’t have it.

The key is when I don’t have it; I put it down and get away from it. If I force it, the result will be some garbage because I am not all the way tuned in.

As far as What Is This Love Thing All About? start to finish, it probably took me about 8 months. I actually went and basically added a character after I thought I was done, which at first only took 4 months.

The female character was much harder to write, and I wanted to make sure I captured the woman correctly, which is why it took longer.

JP: What’s next for Corey J. Barnes?

CB: Next up for Corey J. Barnes, I am currently working on the sequel to What Is This Love Thing All About? I have written almost a stenograph pad full of notes on different ideas, situations, and scenes. Now it is just a matter of tying them all together.

I also want to write a book for middle school and high school aged males that are growing up in a single parent home, without their dad. I want it to be hopefully be able to help other young men get through these trying times by giving them insight and telling them how I made it through, some things I did that maybe they can as well to get where they want to be.

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5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… Aaron D. Taylor, author of Alone with a Jihadist Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
Aaron D. Taylor, author of Alone with a Jihadist
(Foghorn Publishers)

aaron taylor alone with a jihadist on amazondotcom

While many fundamentalist/evangelicals tend to ascribe to a Zionist theology which believes that it is good to be at war with anyone who opposes the Christian rite to expedite the glorious return of the Messiah, there is one crusader, Aaron Taylor, who believes otherwise. Taylor believes that the church has sadly missed the most pronounced message of Jesus Christ: peace.

The very Bible, which Christians read, refers to their founder as The Prince of Peace. Despite this, many Christians support warmongering and unnecessary bloodshed rather than peacemaking. In a room for seven hours with a radical Muslim, Taylor shares the story from his face-to-face encounter, of how Islamic people view the United States of America, our present Administration, and the state of the Christian Church.

It is one thing to look at Christianity from a Christians’ perspective, which is typically an altruistic viewpoint, but things change quite a bit when Christianity is viewed through the eyes of Muslims. Taylor says, ‘Their [Muslims] view is one every Christian must hear!’

Joey Pinkney: Where did you get the idea and inspiration to write Alone with a Jihadist?

Aaron D Taylor: The book came out of an actual experience I had with a radical jihadist in London. I spent seven hours over a period of two days in a cold, abandoned warehouse as part of a taping for a feature length documentary called Holy Wars.

When Khalid, the jihadist, posed the question of how I would implement the Bible from a governmental point of view, I knew that he was onto something that I hadn’t given much thought to before. I also knew that the standard pat evangelical answers didn’t get to the core of Khalid’s moral objection to Christianity.

I left London feeling perplexed and defeated. I took a year off from my missionary travels to get to the bottom of the issue. Alone with a Jihadist is the result of the intense soul searching and Biblical research in the year following that dramatic encounter.

JP: What sets Alone with a Jihadist apart from other books that attempt to bridge the Christian/Muslim gap?

AT: Nearly every book on Muslim/Christian relations written from an evangelical perspective emphasize the evils of Islam and the virtues of Christian civilization. Nearly all are heavily slanted to a right-wing Pro-Israel/anti-Palestinian perspective.

What I do in Alone with a Jihadist is essentially say, “Wait a second here. When it comes to Holy War, we Christians in the West need to remove the plank from our own eyes and realize that there’s a lot of us with the same crusader/jihadist mentality as our Muslim counterparts. Until we come to grips with the ethical teachings of Jesus and apply them towards our understanding of war and peace, we’re not offering the world much different than what exists in Islam. We’re just wrapping Jesus in an American flag and asking Him to bless our bombs.”

It’s a controversial message, but it needs to be said.

JP: As an author, what are the keys to your success that lead to Alone with a Jihadist getting out to the public?

AT: I think if this book gets a massive public reception, it will be because I’m committed more to the message than I am to making a profit off the book. I’m so committed to my message that I’m willing to take a financial loss to get the message out. Because I’m so committed to getting my message out, no media venue is too big or too small for me. I’m taking a no-holds-barred approach, and I believe it’s going to pay off.

JP: As an author, what is your writing process? How long did it take for you to start and finish Alone with a Jihadist?

AT: I wish I could say that I had a disciplined routine in writing this book, but it’s not true. I didn’t have a certain time set aside that I wrote every day. Usually I found myself struggling to find the time to write in light of daily life and chores.

I also had to start over twice before arriving at the final product. That’s because my thought process evolved throughout the project. It took me about 16 months to complete the rough draft. I wrote most often at home or at the public library. I even wrote some of it while I was doing medical studies to help make ends meet.

JP: What’s next for Aaron D. Taylor?

AT: Besides the constant promotion of Alone with a Jihadist through writing articles, doing talks and engaging the media, I also travel several times a year and teach a Bible Story workshop to pastors and missionaries around the world.

My wife and I are also adopting a baby boy from Ethiopia this year and, as it usually happens, as soon as we started the adoption process, my wife got pregnant. Within a year, we are going to have two new additions to the family. I think my wife and I are going to need all the prayer we can get.

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