Friday, June 03, 2005


As a writer there are moments, days, weeks and sometimes months when we question what we do and why the hell we do it. Especially when the checks don’t come on time, the store doesn’t have a copy of your book, your publicist says no tour, a reviewer trashed your book and your kids are begging you to pay them some attention and you have a deadline looming in front of you. It’s times like those when you just wanna say fuck it all. I can’ t do this anymore.
But then there are days like the one I had yesterday at Book Expo America, held at the Javits Center in New York City. The first day is designated as “the black day”– in the politically correct world Black Booksellers Day.

This was the day in which all the black literati big and small came out to celebrate us, our existence our perserverence and our value to the literary community.

Book publishers, authors of every ilk, publicists, buyers, agents and readers were out in force. Damn it felt good!! Folks like L.A. Banks, Victor McGlothin, Toure, Maryann Reid, Francis Ray, Brandon Massey, Bernice McFadden, Brenda Thomas, Iman (yes the supermodel), Mary Monroe, Gwynne Forster, Mary Morrison, Brenda Jackson, Victoria Christopher Murray, James Guitard, Nancey Flowers (ME) and a whole host of others… the list goes on.
It felt good to know that I could count myself among them, to see friends and share a moment of sister and brotherhood, war stories and triumphs.

To be truthful, I am often at odds with the whole notion of us black folks needing to “have something black” to effectively set us apart from everyone else. But I must admit, it is a sensational feeling to be among your own, to bathe in the glow of our successes and celebrate it in the only way black folks know how–by having a good time!!

Although I was terribly ill (with a helluva cold), I came away feeling revitalized, needing to make a contribution, wanting to be better at what I was doing, wanting to help others to be the best they could be.

Dang… I almost came home and wrote those 250+ pages I needed to finish this book!! Almost. I took a pill and went to bed.

But… I go back on Saturday, for that last shot of literary adrenaline.. I know that will be the one to push me over the mountaintop!

1 comment:

Frederick Smith said...

Hey Donna. Even though you had a cold, you couldn't tell. You were on and very friendly at BEA, especially the Wednesday evening reception.

We met at your signing table... I told you I read your blog regularly... and I appreciate your kindness. Hope the trip and conference were good for you!