My First Book 'When A Purple Rose Blooms' is Available NOW

I am beyond excited to announce that my FIRST book When a Purple Rose Blooms is available!! You can order copies directly from my publisher Nomadic Press. Order here
The book is a collection of essays and poetry about my experiences with black womanhood. There's lots of humor, pain, and love on every page. This book wrote itself. I had no intention of releasing a book of poetry and essays, but when I saw how much I've written over the last 20 years I thought, "why not?" and went for it. 
The book launch is tonight, 7pm at the Oakland Peace Center. I will be launching my book along with 6 other new writers to Nomadic Press. I'm in great, literary company. 
Thank you to every person who has read this blog over the years, attended my readings, listened to my radio stories or read my articles. Thank you for your support. I hope you enjoy the book! 

Ten- Year- Old Boy Speaks
Knowledge on Slaying the N-Word

"You can only be destroyed by believing that you are really what the white world calls a nigger."--James Baldwin

I HATE the N-word. I don't care what some black people say, it is not a word of endearment or unity. The term is dehumanizing and ignorant. Some people say "Nigger" is different from "Nigga" and that the latter word is one that has been redefined to mean something positive. I totally disagree. Black folks in the U.S. have been saying "Ni**a" for centuries because of vernacular. In "black vernacular" the -er is dropped. Just like you hear some people, especially down South, say "fing-uh" instead of "finger." Back in the day when we called each other brothas and sistas we weren't killing each other like we do today. It's easier to kill someone when you consider them lazy, subhuman, useless and dumb. That's basically what Ni**a means. Wasn't that white racists' justification for killing and enslaving black people?

May be harder to pull the trigger when the barrel is pointing at your brotha. Someone who comes from a family, may share your blood, is someone's child, God's child.

Johnathan McCoy does a better job at breaking down the N-word. One of my Oakland sistas directed me to this video. The 10-year-old won a speech contest at his church where he spoke about why we should stop using the N-word. His speech was so moving and mature that I forgot I was listening to a child. I am so impressed with this brotha. He makes me proud. His speech has received over 200,000 hits on You Tube. You must, must, must listen to this brotha. Tell us what you think after watching the video.


  1. It's a shame that it takes a 10 yr old kid to show grown adults the light, when it should be the other way around. More on Black America and the N-word:

  2. It's a shame but it's also a good thing. Maybe he can inspire and school his generation on the N-word so they don't use it.

  3. Okay, I'm a white person and I've always felt that meant there was some barrier to commenting on use of the n-word, though of course no one's ever said so. I just have to say that I hate, hate, hate that word. It's so demeaning and horrible and I can't believe any black person would call another human being the n-word after the way white people used it. This little boy brought me to tears with his singing and his mention of President Obama. You got the message right, Johnathan. Thanks for posting this. :)

  4. Wow, I can hardly wait to see what he becomes when he grows up. I hope that the people this message was intended for will see it. Thanks for posting it because there are times when people need to be reminded when they come from greatness.


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