Tag Archives: joeypinkney.com

5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… Wakiem Freeman, author of Down Low Sistahs

JoeyPinkney.com Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
Wakiem Freeman, author of Down Low Sistahs
(Apricot Books International)

Joey Pinkney: Where did you get the idea and inspiration to write Down Low Sistahs?

Wakiem Freeman: The idea came from an ex-girlfriend who confessed to me that she was sleeping with her cousin who was a female. Years later, I was going through old photos. I ran across her picture and was inspired to tackle the touchy subject.

JP: What sets Down Low Sistahs apart from other urban fiction novels?

WF: Down Low Sistahs is innovative. It stands alone with a unique twist.

JP: As an author, what are the keys to your success that lead to Down Low Sistahs getting out to the public?

WF: Discipline, distribution and word of mouth. I’m focused and screaming “they on the down low and you don’t even know, they on that lo-lo” every time I hit the streets of N.Y.C. The public has spoken. I’m on my ninth print run.

JP: As an author, what is your writing process? How long did it take for you to start and finish Down Low Sistahs?

WF: First, I pick a topic. Then decide if I want my brain to tackle the topic. Next is research, which can take any where from 2 to 4 months. Next is designing a book cover. Then I write my outline of all chapters, which takes about two weeks. I finished Down Low Sistahs in 4 days.

JP: What’s next for Wakiem Freeman?

WF: The re-release of Down Low Sistahs, re-edited, with a NEW cover, summer 2009

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5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… T. Benson Glover, author of Sister

JoeyPinkney.com Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
T. Benson Glover, author of Sister
(Amaiya Entertainment)

In Sister, T. Benson Glover takes you on a journey to “The Badlands”, a notorious North Philadelphia ghetto plagued by drugs and violence. It’s a place where love doesn’t exist inside The City of Brotherly Love. This is the neighborhood that the character Sister calls home.

Follow Sister as she winds her way into the depths of a world shrouded in darkness, clouded by murder, riddled by lust, consumed by greed and overrun by envy and betrayal. In Sister, Glover makes it clear that beneath every inner city there’s a place where’s there’s no love lost, even The City of Brotherly Love .

Joey Pinkney: Where did you get the idea and inspiration to write Sister?

T. Benson Glover: I got the inspiration to write the novel Sister out of necessity. I felt that there was need to assess how drastic and violent the situation has become for our young black women to grow up in the inner city minus their fathers. And the character Sister is just an example of what can happen to a young sister growing up in urban America.

JP: What sets Sister apart from other urban fiction novels set in Philly?

TBG: What sets Sister apart, is that it is not only set in Philly, but also Pittsburgh, PA, and Fayetteville, NC.

JP: As a debut author, what are the keys to your success that lead to Sister appearing on the Essence Best Seller’s List?

TBG: I would say that it’s the constant grind: going to the book signings, the Harlem Book Fairs, communicating with your readers online, etc.

All of those things, on top of having a good product that’s both credible and real, are keys to gaining that position. Key Number 1 has got to be that your readers have to feel where you’re coming from. Shout out to Essence for recognizing my hard work.

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

TBG: Actually, I start by developing my lead character and his or her voice. Once I nail that down, I finish the storyline. It took me maybe nine months, off and on, to finish Sister.

JP: What’s next for T. Benson Glover?

TBG: Next up for me is the sequel to Sister. Cash should be in stores by December 2008. Thanks for your time.

Facebook: T. Benson Glover


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5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… D. I., author of Frostbite

JoeyPinkney.com Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
D.I., author of Frost Bite
(Madd Mindz Publishing)

Humble, charismatic, charming and determined are characteristics to name a few when speaking of the rookie of the year author of urban-street novels, D.I. Considered by many as the Steven King of urban-street fiction, no genre or entity can captivate ones mind as D.I. when indulging in his movies on paper.

As vivid and raw as a bloody crime scene, D.I.’s no-holds-barred style of writing begs a read to question: are these masterpieces real and titled fiction in efforts to elude possible conviction? Or are these masterpieces truly fiction but just so well written that it leaves the reader astounded to one’s imagination of how he depicts the severity of the street life.

An example of D.I.’s writing prowess is the ninth chapter of Frost Bite. As the Venoms (a murderous female killing crew, led by Shanda) plots on Ghost (Americas living nightmare), D.I. depicts a brooding scene of carnage as victims fall for the deadly Venoms’ stunning and angelic looks. It shows how there’s no one role a woman or man could play, whether being the villain or victim.

Joey Pinkney: Where did I get the idea and inspiration to write Frost Bite?

D.I.: I was actually writing a poem to my mother while I was in the ‘box’ aka OBCC’s solitary confinement on Rikers Island. I received a letter from her, and she asked me how did I get to the point where I’m facing 12 ½ – 25 years in prison.

It was suppose to be a simple answer which I was setting up as a little poem called ‘Mother of a Stranger’. I started writing the poem. I was just thinking of all the stuff I was exposed to while in the streets and what I’ve done or saw first hand. From those past thoughts, I realized that question couldn’t be answered with a simple poem. Six hundred plus pages later, I gave you Frost Bite.

JP: What sets Frost Bite apart from other urban fiction novels, where the main character is torn between crime and love?

DI: Well first let me answer the second part of that question. The main character is torn apart between crime and love because he is a street monger, just like many other brothers raised with no other choice but the streets. He chases whatever brings him the quickest dollar whether its robbing, drugs…even murder. He does what he feels he has to do in the company of his childhood friend, Fam, at his side at all times.

Then by fate, he comes across a beauty by the name of Lisa and an ex-street tough turned business mogul which both show him a new way of life. That new way of life is the way he wants to live. Because the loyalty and the brotherly love he has for Fam, he’s stricken to choose who to go with and who to leave behind.

The twist is, if he goes with Fam, that new way of life which will bring him sure fortune and a honest living will be just a memory of what he could’ve or possibly achieved. If he goes with Lisa and all that comes with her, he’ll have to turn his back on Fam, who’s a homicidal maniac. Crossing him can more the surely end with a deadly result.

What puts Frost Bite in a league of its own? Well it’s not the same recycled story of a drug king pin or how someone came from nothing, got it but lost it all in a hail of gun smoke. It’s not a story about some chick chasing some drug dealer or rapper to gain a come up to do whatever she thinks is best for her.

Frost Bite is what I’d consider a bitter street-love story with the main character sacrificing himself to protect those he consider dear to him. With the intertwined connection of the characters, it gives the reader a humorous but shocking cliché on how small the world is.

Yes it’s filled with violence, sex, lies, betrayal and all those good elements which one would consider is an urban fiction, but the bottom line is that those elements don’t short change the reader into another too short, undisrupted, and unrealistic street tale. Truly, you can kick up your feet and watch this movie on paper unfold in your mind as you read Frost Bite.

JP: As an author, what are the keys to your success that lead to Frost Bite getting out to the public?

DI: Well, that’s on you and the general public to realize a diamond in the rough! But seriously, some would consider Frost Bite is a reflection of the life I once lived. Of course, some areas were exaggerated. For the most part it’s so easy to identify with because you can envision it to be someone’s actual life.

The public is tired of make believe stories. They’re tired of people going school, becoming CO’s then proclaiming to be a gangster. You can dissect Frost Bite for what it is and do your homework on me and what I’ve been through and realize the authenticity in it and come to just two conclusions.

This has to be based on him or he’s one hell of a writer. If you go to one of these other urban fiction writers and do the same, it just doesn’t add up when you do a background check on that individual author. Yeah, they’ve been locked up or what have you, but they go to jail for credit cards but write about drug kingpins.

JP: As an author, what is your writing process? How long did it take for you to start and finish Frost Bite?

DI: Well, when I wrote Frost Bite, I was incarcerated. I had nothing but time and hardly any distractions. So it took me about eight months to pen out. I take it old school with writing: Intro/Body/Conclusion. I start with the beginning, the middle, and ending, then fill in the in between.

I do that so I’ll know the middle of the story just as well as how it’ll end. I use that format because I’ve realized how descriptive I can be. Description takes up a lot of space. If you’re zoned out your story can go anywhere, and I don’t want it to lose the reader.

JP: What’s next for D.I. and Madd Mindz Pubishing?

DI: Well the next stop is Black Dayz: The Filroy Black Story. Then I’m putting out The Code. After that, Frost Bite 2 will be unleashed. I have quite a few novels already done, about 6 in total. I’m working with other writers as well, which will be released under Madd Mindz Publishing. I’ve been talking to a few people about a possible movie on Frost Bite.


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