G.P.A.: This title is associated with both. The Warmest Winter is a novel and a collection of poetry. A couple of main characters in the novel exist in a parallel universe that is the poetry book.
Joey Pinkney: So, there are two different publications with the same title? One a novel, the other a poetry book? Or are both in the same piece of literature?
G.P.A.: Two different publications.
Joey Pinkney: How did you come up with the concept for this double release?
G.P.A.: I always like to say I did this or that, and no one else did. One book started as the novel, then I scrapped it. I finished the novel. Then I went back and picked up the scrapped version of the book and made that a book of poetry.
Joey Pinkney: Hi, My Name is Bobo is seemingly a departure from your poetry releases. What sparked you to go in that direction?
G.P.A.: A dare actually. A buddy of mine asked when would I write a book for his kids. It took me two weeks, but I did it.
Joey Pinkney: How has the reception been?
G.P.A.: Novels and children’s books open up other doors. The reception has been great.
Joey Pinkney: Bullying is something near and dear to your heart. Is this something you’ve experienced growing up? How would you suggest children to best handle a bullying situation?
G.P.A.: I hate bullies. I was bullied. The bullying stopped when I kicked the bully’s ass. I would tell children or anyone being bullied to try and reason it out. But if that doesn’t work, kick the bully’s ass. I know that’s not politically correct. Then again, neither is bullying. Another thing: don’t watch while someone is being bullied or harmed.
Joey Pinkney: You’ve moved into producing soundtracks for your literature. Tell us more about that.
G.P.A.: Just a different spin on the art. You have to create energy to attract readers and supporters. My ear for music and my poetry skills make for a winning combination.
Joey Pinkney: Speaking of winning with your poetry, you are a Six Time Champion. What’s the name of the competition and how did you manage to win it six times in a row?
G.P.A.: That’s the Moth Storytelling Championship. Man, I’m a storytelling MFer.
Joey Pinkney: If you had to pick a different profession, what would it be? What would you be doing as passionately as you wax poetically?
G.P.A.: I would be a teacher, probably. Or a comedian.
Joey Pinkney: I could see both.
G.P.A.: You never know.
Joey Pinkney: If you knew back then what you know now, what are some of the things you would share with a novice G.P.A. on his rise to finding his own voice and his own stride?
G.P.A.: Go get it even more. Avoid associating with people who haven’t done more than you. You can do anything. And anything you do, you can be the best at.
Joey Pinkney: What would you like for people who only see your city through negative media coverage and antagonistic social media comments to know about your Chicago? How does your city fuel your hustle?
G.P.A.: Chicago is under siege from the inside and higher up – not us residents. There is a plot behind the violence and other negative aspects of our city. I believe that it is to push people of color or those not on the high end of the economic ladder out of the prime real estate in our city, mainly the South Side. I love Chicago. I am Chicago, born and bred. I rep my city.
Joey Pinkney: The last time we sat down for an interview, I made mention of how your career is similar to Kobe Bryant’s die-hard determination to win. In recently weeks, I’ve seen you representing and supporting LeBron James.
G.P.A.: Well, the NBA tried to make us love Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors. I’m for the underdog, plus the Warriors broke the Bulls single-season record for wins. No good. My Bro said I was like Lebron, unstoppable and such.
Joey Pinkney: LeBron has finally brought a championship to a team and a city that everybody respects as a contender but not as a champion. How does your own mentality for bringing honor and positive attention to your hometown of Chicago keep you going?
G.P.A.: Yeah. He’s a stud. It’s all a part of what you do. You represent yourself, your family, your race, and where you are from.
Joey Pinkney: I have a quick Either/Or Q&A for you. Pick a number between 1 and 50.
Joey Pinkney: 22! OK, here goes. 22 Either/Or Questions.
Joey Pinkney: 1) Dresses or skirts?
Joey Pinkney: 2) Winter or summer?
Joey Pinkney: 3) Ketchup or mustard?
Joey Pinkney: 4) Dancing or singing?
Joey Pinkney: 5) Freckles or dimples?
Joey Pinkney: 6) Crushed ice or cubed ice?
G.P.A.: Crushed ice.
Joey Pinkney: 7) Antique or brand new?
G.P.A .: Brand new.
Joey Pinkney: 8) Bond or Bourne?
Joey Pinkney: 9) Washing dishes or doing laundry?
G.P.A.: Washing dishes.
Joey Pinkney: 10) Call or text?
Joey Pinkney: 11) Picnic or nice restaurant?
Joey Pinkney: 12) Sweet pickles or dill pickles?
Joey Pinkney: 13) Concrete or abstract
Joey Pinkney: 14) Kanye before or after the inception of Good Music
Joey Pinkney: 15) Smile or game face?
G.P.A.: Game face.
Joey Pinkney: 16) Pizzle or Bruce Veign?
Joey Pinkney: 17) Sunrise or sunset?
Joey Pinkney: 18) Hip Hop or R&B?
G.P.A.: Hip Hop.
Joey Pinkney: 19) Black leather or brown leather?
G.P.A.: Black leather.
Joey Pinkney: 20) Christian Bale or Ben Affleck (as Batman)?
G.P.A.: Shoot. Bale for now.
Joey Pinkney: 21) Punisher or Daredevil?
Joey Pinkney: 22) Chicago or Chicago?
G.P.A.: Chicago, all day every day.
Joey Pinkney: Boom, and there you have it. I appreciate your time, G.P.A.
G.P.A. (Greatest Poet Alive)