Imani Wisdom's brainchild -- Pink Noire Publications -- has been known for her unpredictable style of storytelling. Now its founder is expanding the "pink and black" brand to shine on prolific artists. From the inspirationalist, Danica Worthy to bestselling author, Stacy Deanne, Pink Noire understand these talented individuals know how to express their craft through words, song, dance, and stroke of a brush.

, , , , , ,


Tre' L. Bryant is a first time author whose forthcoming book "Where There's a Will, There's a Way" chronicles her experience as a domestic violence victim and survivor. Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, Tre' wants to use her voice and words in a powerful and positive way to speak on her experience for a passionate cause. She had a dream that was shattered and through her faith and family she overcame a life that was full of depression and meaningless. Now, Tre' is still here and standing tall while serving God's purpose with no intentions of stopping. To understand her struggle is to understand her journey.

Imani: Welcome to the Lounge. Let's start off with a simple icebreaker and begin with your story, just who is Tre' Bryant?

Tre: Thank you for having me it is truly an honor. Well Tre is a mom to two amazing kids (Kayla 19 and Larry 18) first and foremost and currently in pursuit of living out her dreams while helping people in the process , a business woman building her own brand and adjusting to life as a first time author.

Tell us more about your latest project. What's the inspiration behind this book?

Where there’s A Will There’s A Way was totally inspired by my personal real life events going as far back to the age for 4 years old. But mostly my experience being a Domestic Violence victim for 20 years which was half of my life and reliving some of those difficult moments. This book helped in my healing process and has allowed me to not be shameful of my past or blame myself for the things that I could not change. I always wanted to write a book but was discouraged so many times from doing so until I met my God sent angel that encouraged me to share my story and help others. It’s because of him I found the strength and courage to move forward and follow my dream and finally decide to share my story and not hide behind my pain any longer.

Briefly, explain what makes your book different from the vast choices in the same genre?

Because my story was my reality and I am here speaking to you as a survivor.

What were the challenges of writing this book?

Having to relive various moments in my life that I had emotionally detached myself from so many years ago. This book has helped me to finally deal with my pain while giving me the opportunity to help other’s in the process. Overcoming my fears and finally making peace with my past is really what this book is about and also letting people that have gone or are currently dealing with some of these same issues to assure them that they are not alone. I want people to be inspired by my story and say that it is because of me they didn’t give up.

What have you learned (or still learning) since being the business?

That it’s a lot of work and nothing like I imagined. Until you write a book you have no idea the hard work that goes into it and making it a success. I never knew it could be so demanding but at the same time I accept the challenge and I have been blessed with a great mentor.

What is your dream collaboration? With whom, and why?

I would be honored to work with Lakia Nichole on a project someday. She has been such an inspiration to me and has taken me under her wing and I am forever grateful and she has taught me so much already. She has become my hero professionally and personally she’s great.

Finally, share with us something you've never mentioned publicly since being an author; such as, a quirk or a hidden talent. I'm sure readers would like to know.

Cooking in the downtime is something that not too many people know about me. I also have very many business ventures in the works outside of my Domestic Violence organization Survivor Life’s Blessing which I have started to promote awareness and provide help to victims with the help of other survivors like myself as well.


I still get vivid memories of being grabbed tightly around my neck and the tight grip of his hands preventing screams from escaping my lungs. Along with the continuous flow of tears, my breathing became shallow and I felt like I was slipping away. If I allowed him to think he could disrespect me in this fashion he was sadly mistaken. There was going to be some serious consequences and shit was about to get real ugly. Words started being exchanged and before long, shit started flying and breaking because I knew that this was one fight he was not going to win. I was ready to prove to him that I wasn’t having what the fuck he was dishing. We fought like two niggas in the street, and I remember he had me in an extremely tight head lock. I had full access to his arm and since that was the only part of his body I could reach, I locked down on it with my teeth like I was eating a steak and the end result was him in the emergency room having to get a rabies shot. My intention was to rip a plug out of his arm. Once the fight was over I realized that he still had not overcome his anger issues and felt he owned me. I was supposed to accept this kind of behavior whenever he felt the need to display it. I knew in my heart that I had love for him, but I started really asking myself if he was worth it. I developed thoughts of wanting to end my own life because of the stress, the drama, and him not choosing to acknowledge me. If there wasn’t verbal abuse, there were silent moments. I was the one who would end up hurt and feeling extremely alone, but then I would look at my babies and I would try to have a change of heart. As always and even to this day, I put them first. I continue to sacrifice for them what would ultimately be my entire life up to that moment and my much so desired happiness would be put on the back burner. During the first year of my son’s life there were many more fights, some permanent scars, endless heartaches, and feelings of being trapped with no outlet. I began to hate my life and went into a horrible depression. The recovery would not take place for a long time.

Read More
, , , , , , , ,


O. “Dino” Domino is more than just your typical rapper from Louisiana with a bunch of country jargon.  He has combined his years of military and music making experience to  create a new standard for independent artists.  Cleverly, he has also enhanced his marketability by becoming proficient in writing lyrics, artist development, mixing, engineering and mastering to unmistakably set himself apart from the sleuth of rappers and engineers emerging in today’s market.

Being the great-nephew of the famous Blues singer Fats Domino, Dino has been around music his entire life; so it is no coincidence that he found his way to the music industry.  Due to his vast experience, his southern dialect transformed into and improved and more marketable sound.

As Dino’s interest in the music industry grew, so did his talent, ability and connections.  His attention to detail and quality products led him to host the first annual E.A.R.S. (Emerging Artist and Rising Stars) Talent Showcase in Fairbanks, AK., and a couple of major performances at the Juneteenth Celebrations in Kansas City, KS and Austin, TX., where his connections in the industry expanded as well as his reputation for producing a quality product.  More recently, he and the label’s artists A. Teezy, Rah Talynt and Minus the Infamous opened for Rich Homie Quan and The Alumni Legends of Hip Hop (Dana Dane, Chubb Rock, Kwame & Greg Nice .

Today Dino is the CEO of the independent label Mysterious Entertainment whose tagline is “The Major Indie Label”; a well earned title.  He is currently promoting the single “Keep It Gutta featuring Lil Flip” off the Southern Riot vol 2 mixtape hosted by DJ Big Redd of Swisha House.  Dino also acquired global distribution through IMF | INgrooves Fontana (Universal Music Group).  The label is also promoting the newly released EP from A. Teezy entitled "A1 The EP" and the debut release "The Infamous" EP by Minus.
Courtesy: Mysterious Entertainment

Imani: Welcome to The Lounge. This is truly an honor. First off, you have an impressive resume starting with your musical roots. Your Great-Uncle was the legendary great, Fats Domino. Was he one of your biggest influence toward your music?

Dino:  I really did not know who he was until I became an adult and well into trying to develop myself as an artist.  But after I became aware, his success drove me even more to be proficient in the business of music and not just an artist.

From what I read from your bio, you have to be one of the hardest working men in Indie music. So, can you tell us briefly the story behind your brainchild, "Mysterious Entertainment"?

The name Mysterious Entertainment was derived to articulate the world that our music (artists) comes from everywhere; as we do not focus on only one genre.  Although this is a predominately urban label, we work with any artist in any genre that is serious about making this a profession.

What's your label's mission for its artists?

A. The label’s mission is to be proficient in aspects of the music creating process to facilitate the highest quality product for customers while reducing our dependency on outside entities thereby decreasing our overhead and increasing our profit margin. 

What are the benefits for Indie Artists in the industry, and are there any cons, too?

The benefits that accompany any artist signed to Mysterious Entertainment include 24/7 free access to industry standard instrumentals, free unlimited studio time, free mixing and mastering services, major distribution of their projects at cost, free artist development and management and free venue and event booking services to name a few.  The major con to being an artist on this label is that all artists incur some financial responsibility for their project as well as contributing a small monthly label fee.

You're serving active duty in the United States Army, and have been for 16 years. Have that stern discipline you've developed in the military carried into your role as CEO? And if so, how?

The discipline I acquired over the last 16 years has definitely carried over into the way my organization functions.  The entire staff of Mysterious Entertainment are well organized and punctual.  I understand the difference of being a Soldier and running a label and my artists and staff are not treated like Soldiers, however some things like getting projects completed on time, showing up to events on time and working as a team are strictly enforced.

I've heard your work and you are gifted. That said, what inspires you to write?

My inspiration simply comes from all of the struggles and sacrifices I have been through and made throughout my lifetime accompanied by the desire and will to be successful. 

As an Indie Author, I understand what it's like to wear many hats in a business. So do you agree talent isn't enough to achieve success in the industry (or in any industry)?

I honestly believe that an individual must have talent to be successful but that success is not based solely on that talent.  In any business, knowing how to conduct business is the real key to obtaining success; combined with the willingness and ability to network. 

What advice do you have for aspiring artists?

My advice to all aspiring artists is to learn something about the business of the music industry and be willing to invest in yourself because you should not expect someone else to invest in you if you don’t believe in yourself enough to do it yourself.  Artists should also learn how to articulate their desires and goals in a professional manner.  The most common gesture from artists that steers me clear of them are “ghetto antics”.

Do you have a dream collaboration? If so with whom, and why?

My dream collaboration is with Dr. Dre, Ice Cube and Master P.  Dr. Dre because I know I would learn so much from him just by sitting and watching him work.  It is not too many people that can say they left a million dollar company with nothing only to start a new company that tripled in profits.  Ice Cube and Master P because of some of the same reasons but in addition they could teach me so much about how to have longevity in the industry as well as incorporating music into other, more lucrative business.  Not to mention I have been a fan of all three since a young boy.

 What are your next projects?

The label is preparing to release the third installment of our mixtape series, “Southern Riot volume III” in early Spring 2015.  That release will be followed by the debut Eps from female rapper Rah Talynt entitled “Rah Diamond”, female rapper Kaysha and my own EP entitled “PURE”.  And we expect to have a few surprise releases in between.

Booking: LIMELIGHT BOOKING - 210-685-0110

Media – URBAN STARZ MEDIA & P.R Lashaun Turner 951-665-8365
Read More
, , , , ,


I sat alone in a darkened room, swimming in an emotional pool of despair; I cried a lot and prayed often. And yet the more I surrendered my heart to the Creator, I felt a huge disconnect. Riddled in sorrow, I tried to think positive like envisioning my children’s their lovely faces. For a moment, it almost worked. But the depression was too great. I couldn’t even crack a smile. The murkiness had fallen deep into my soul. And my children – my three wonderful blessings – I felt they were better off. I was ready to give up.

I leaned back against the chair of where I sat and strangely thought of my silk scarf I had tied to my head. My life was in such chaos back then, I rarely had taken it off. The scarf symbolized a shield against the status quo – your hair equates beauty. But for me, I didn’t give a rats-behind about being “prettied”. I ballooned to two hundred fifty pounds on a five-feet-two inch frame. Depression and I didn’t care. We didn’t care about the latest styles or extreme makeovers; we just wanted to be withdrawn with our own pitiful thoughts, hoping those thoughts would get the best of us.

I knew for certain I wanted to end it. My tears were apparent like April showers, and one by one they were cascading into a tailspin. I couldn’t bear it any longer; I had to call His name. He known for weeks how worse I became. He’d heard my prayers over and over again and yet nothing. I was fat and broke with an uncertain future at the age of thirty-nine. As old folks would say, I didn’t have a pot to piss in.

Then I said it – I looked to the ceiling as if I could see His face, grimacing in anger as I with began with the why’s and then how’s, and threw in some whatif’s. I even had the nerve to point to make sure He understood my argument. The anger was only the beginning: I was pissed. I clenched my jaws, murmuring one word after another as I continued my rant. Then I’d taken the gripe to another level. So much so, it shocked me to the point I knew I couldn’t take it back. “Just take me Lord…right now!” I fought through the tears. “Why am I here? I feel as if I’m just an accident. Lord, just take me. I don’t care how, just take me away. I’m a living a life with no purpose”.

I then fell into silence, waiting and waiting and waiting – waiting in anticipation for my final hours, waiting to fade to black, just waiting. So while I continued to wait, I received a call but not on my cell phone, on the landline phone two rooms away. I rolled my eyes at the mere disturbance, knowing I had to leave the comforts of my darkness. But as soon as I said hello, a soft-spoken voice emerged from the receiver. It was my mother. “Are you okay?” she asked.

I rolled my eyes and lied. “Yes, why do you ask?” 

She said was overcome with a strange feeling to call me as my face suddenly appeared in her mind. My eyes then widened with the fear of God. I peered to ceiling, wondering if it was possible. Did He nudged momma’s spirit or just a simple coincidence? She then rambled on her queries, while I pretended everything was hokey-dorie. I mean I had to. My mother lived on the other side of town with my sister bedridden with Multiple Sclerosis. There was nothing she could do, or at least that’s what I thought.

 I returned to the darkened room after the phone call to gaze at the ceiling in stun silence. Although my tears were no more, the pain remained but this time I sat in solitude – pondering if my mother’s phone call was perfect timing or Divine intervention. My questions were answered a year and three months later, however. After I made an about-face with my life by losing weight and starting my writing career, my mother died suddenly on a warm June afternoon.  Here I was on the verge of becoming a first-time author – a direction she encouraged for me to take – and she was gone just like that.  

We take many things for granted, but one thing we do especially take is time. We all had complained it moves slowly or there’s never enough. But time can be a merciless, unkind friend, especially saying those final goodbyes. My opportunity to thank her for that fateful day had never occurred. My second chance will happen many years from now – many, many years from now. I have too much to live for because I understand my purpose. And because of my mother, I see it in vivid colors.

God knew exactly what He was doing the moment when I wallowed in that darkened room. He knew of my request before I opened my mouth; and He knew the right person to save me. It was because of her, I realize heroines aren’t all ways perfect. They have flaws and yet still wanting to save hurt souls.  It’s a gift that many don’t realize. Unbeknownst to my mother, she definitely had it.

©Imani Wisdom, 2014 
Pink Noire Publications

Read More
, , , ,


A Chicago Native and Artistic Pisces, Poetic Flow™ first began writing poetry in 1985. Her poetry captures the essence of everyday life, situations, circumstances, faith, spirituality, encouragement, motivation and more.  She is inspired to write by the universe (i.e. people, family, friends, strangers, feelings, thoughts, etc.) She self-published her first book of poems in 2008 "Poetic Flow: Poetry For Your Soul" through AuthorHouse Publishing Company. In June 2014, she self-published through Xlibris Publishing Company, two new books "Love~In~Life Poetry" and "Positive Vibes by Poetic Flow."  You can purchase any and/or all of her books via the BOOKS tab above on this website.

In April 2013, she officially started her POSITIVE VIBES online store at and has been doing personal poetic quotes for various celebrities (see CELEBRITIES tab above).

In July 2014, Poetic Flow™ partnered with a local t-shirt vendor to bring you better pricing & variety. You can purchase t-shirts on this website under the POSITIVE VIBES STORE tab.

Also in July 2014, Poetic Flow™ partnered with No Budget Studio, LLC as co-owner, located in downtown Kansas City, KS. NBS, LLC is a new Television & Movie Production Studio. Be on the lookout for their work on your television screens in 2015. Visit the website at

Imani: Pink Noire is please to welcome "word artist", Yolanda "Poetic Flow" Jackson. Welcome to The Lounge, Ma'am. So let's get down to it: what makes Poetic Flow the woman she is today?

Poetic Flow: Hi Pink Noire / Imani, thank you so very much for allowing me to share a piece of my life story with your viewers, it is humbly appreciated. What makes me who I am is first and foremost GOD. Second it would be my mom, my late grandmother and my late great-grandmother. These women are the foundation of me. They are my roots, my strength, my guidance, my support, my loves and my life lines. It was my late grandmother Verena Jackson who saw the gift of poetry in me and told me I need to share it with the world. She taught me so many things about people and life. It was my late great-grandmother Mary (full Cherokee Indian) who possessed such strength and integrity and it is my mother, Mona Mingo, who taught me how to stand strong even through adversity and to always love myself. The combination of these 3 amazing women in my life is a reflection of me.

What inspires you to write, and how long have you been taking up the craft?

People, life, love, circumstances, situations, tragedies, triumphs, feelings, thoughts, conversations, etc. inspire me to write. These are my inspirations. Poetry is my gift/my talent and because of that, I write with ease. I can write a poem at a drop of a dime. GOD gifted me with this blessing to share with the world. This is why my motto is “Inspiring, Motivating & Encouraging the World – One Poem/Positive Vibe at a Time.”

I have been writing poetry since 1985, however I didn’t publish my first book until 2008.

What's your favorite part of the poetry process: writing words into art, or reciting the passion behind the words?

The entire process of poetry is my favorite. From the title, to the words, to each verse, writing and reciting it. Writing it allows the reader to put their own take on it, in terms of the passion or dynamics of their reading. However, reciting it, gives me the power to put my passion and emphasis on certain words or phrases that I want to jump out and catch the listeners attention. I can bring that dramatic, powerful, forceful, positive and passionate element to my poems when I recite them.

Of all your poems, which one do you hold near and dear to your heart?

The below poem I wrote in 2007 when my 22 year old brother was murdered in Chicago. The killer was caught a year later and is currently serving his sentence.

The Stain Of Pain
To My Brother (Cinque E. Mingo) - You are truly missed (9/7/84 to 5/8/07)

Life is too short
This we know
Never knowing
When it’s our time to go

I woke up one morning (5/8/07)
Went on to work
Got a phone call
That could have given someone a stroke

My mother on the other line
Telling me my 22 year old brother was shot
This is just something
I would have never thought about

I left work
Got on the bus
Prayed to God
Didn’t make a fuss

Two stops before I got to my car
A few short blocks until I got in my ride
Another phone call from mom
“Cinque has died”

My face is stunned
My heart confused
Not understanding
Why this happened to you

I called the family
Called some friends
Informing them
My brother’s life had come to an end

Still frozen in time
My mind working overload
Just saw my brother
A few days ago

We were talking about GOD
Talking about Life
Talking about the future
Man, this can’t be right

Someone took his life
They had no regard
Could care less
About our stress

As he stood and talked with friends
Laughing and talking smack
The gunman
Shot my brother in the back

He fled the scene
Still at large
I pray every day
Knowing he has to answer to GOD

Now we’ve lost our brother
Mom and Dad, their son
His five children, their father
His life gone at the hand of a gun

Someone pulled the trigger
Never did they figure
The ripple effect it would have
Senseless Crime, it’s so sad

I thank God
For the 22 years
He gave me with my brother
Although I still shed tears

We conversed a lot
We had a real connection
I now think of Q as my guardian angel
My protection

I love you Q
Just the same
We’ll see you again, but until then
We live with the stain of pain

©2007 – Poetic Flow™, All Rights Reserved

My brother lived his life knowing Christ died for our sins and he lived his life by giving love, which is why I know, he’s with the Father Above.  


You've written a few poetry books, among them is titled, "Poetic Flow: Poetry for Your Soul. What was the inspiration of writing this book?

This was my very first poetry book I published in 2008. It encompassed poetry I had written from 1985 until 2008. I entitled it Poetic Flow: Poetry for Your Soul because that is exactly what it was and is, literally poetry for your soul. There is a poem or poems in my book that will touch your soul, caress your mind, wrap words around your heart, elevate your spirit, enlighten your life and so much more. It sincerely is Poetry For Your Soul.

It was finally time for me to officially introduce myself to the world with my words, so in 2008 I did just that with this book. I wanted it to inspire others, uplift, motivate, encourage, etc. I knew that this book would be a blessing to all who read it, because that is what my poetry does. I write for people who are 5-105, meaning, I keep my words simplistic yet powerful. Anyone who reads my work, takes away from it an understanding and good feeling or feeling of empowerment. I write to be a blessing to all who hear, read and see it. 

In 2014, you've partnered up with "No Budget Studio" as co-owner. Could you tell the readers more about this venture?

Yes. My business partner, Ursula Joyner and I decided we wanted to create an entrepreneurial life. She has been in the entertainment business for over 25 years in Hollywood, CA. She came to Atlanta to check out the industry, but it wasn’t what she wanted and really couldn’t find a good niche there. In July 2014 we went back to her hometown of Kansas City, KS for a family reunion and she felt very strongly about having the studio there in the center of the Midwest. Although she never thought she would ever be starting a business in Kansas, let alone move back, yet that is where No BudgetStudio, LLC was born. I am co-owner, executive producer, legal, marketing, promotions and social media. I take on a lot of responsibilities to get things up and going. We are a Television/Film/Music Production Studio located in downtown Kansas City, KS. Our website is and we are open for business. It was our goal to have a studio where people who have large, small or no budgets can come and make their dreams a reality. We want to help the independent producers, writers, creators, directors, artists, actors, etc. to be able to fulfill their dreams as we are fulfilling ours. As well as be an avenue for established producers, etc. who may need a place to film in Kansas City, KS. We will also do our own television shows, a few of which are already written, we just have to film them. The passion we have for success is what will propel us to where we want to be and helping others as we climb that ladder.

You also started an online store called "Positive Vibes" bearing poetic quotes, and from what I understand you have celebrities adoring your t-shirts. What's the message you're trying to convey with this line?

Yes, I originally began writing Positive Vibes in 2009, it wasn’t until 2013 that I officially launched my Positive Vibes by Poetic Flow online store, via the assistance of my business partner Ursula Joyner who advised me of where I could get started and also suggested that I reach out to celebrities by doing personal poetic quotes for them. So in 2013, I launched which houses a countless number of my Positive Vibes, including those I’ve done for celebrities. In 2014, I partnered with a local t-shirt vender, Big Frogs, in order to lower the prices of my t-shirt line. You can also find featured shirts on my website under the POSITIVE VIBES STORE at

The message I am conveying in ALL of my Positive Vibes is exactly what it says, POSITIVE VIBES. I use my words to inspire, encourage and motivate others. Not only can you read it in my books, hear it in my recited/recorded poetry, but you can wear it on your chest as a testament of power and strength and positivity. Sometimes we never know if we have blessed someone by a smile, a kind word or even them reading a message they needed at that moment on your shirt. So I write messages to convey to all who see and receive them that there is POWER in POSITIVE and my words are the VIBES that deliver it.

How did you feel when you saw the first snapshot of a celebrity wearing your t-shirt?

I was hyped up! Lol. If memory serves me correctly Cynda Williams-Plummer (from Mo’Better Blues) was the first celeb to tweet or email me her picture wearing one of my Positive Vibes shirts and Janet Hubert (a good personal friend of mine) was the second.  Shortly thereafter I received pictures from others that I did personal poetic quotes for: KeKe Wyatt, Tichina Arnold, Terri J Vaughn and Daphne Wayans. I also did one for Malinda Williams and Kim Coles.

Most recently I sent a new general celebrity quote t-shirt to Sinbad and Lisa Vidal (actress from Third Watch, ER and now on Being Mary Jane).

So what's next for Poetic Flow?

Well, I figure in the next year or two, I will publish my 4th book of poetry and possibly another book of positive vibes. Aside from that, stay glued to your televisions because you will be seeing A No Budget Studio Production gracing your screens in the very near future. I am extremely committed to this new venture and we are going to be a huge success. When you have a passion, a dream and undeniable/unstoppable motivation and determination, great things are born.

If anyone reading this interview and would like to hear you recite your poems, where should they go online?

They can find me via my website this is where they can hear me, connect with me on all my social media sites, connect with me on YouTube and check out my videos, etc. Also, this is where they can purchase my featured Positive Vibes shirts, purchase my CD and/or any of my 3 books.

I thank you so very much for reaching out to me and asking me to be a part of your blog. Also, thank you for allowing your platform to be a platform for me and supporting my mission, goals and dreams/passions.

Peace, Blessings & Much Love!

Poetic Flow™
Read More
, , , , ,


There she is, curling up on the loveseat of her grandmother’s couch with that same, damn tablet on the ball of her knees. Clutters of papers are sprawled besides her, trailing to the floor as if each paper represents an important story. Her eyes are darkened, noticeable weariness from a lack of sleep she been bearing for months; and yet, this woman’s mission is crystal clear: to continue her vision no matter how bumpy the course.

Everyday she’s up before dawn, creating content for God-knows whom, and at times, she carries this pink diary-like book, scribbling in it for new ideas.

Some people are just as baffled as me; they can’t understand as to why somebody, like she, chooses writing…wait, excuse me, storytelling, as a life’s dream. This petite and shy woman could do a lot of things, can she? You can’t tell me this ridiculous notion of creating fiction is the only thing she can do?

For five years I’ve seen her type on her laptop, glowing like a bride at her wedding. Then, right on cue, she beams in silent awe when her story takes a new turn. I raise my brow in curiosity, pondering what’s going on in her pretty little head.  

Inside of her hard drive are a library of finished and unfinished manuscripts and a collection of short stories and poems. I’ve read all of them, and she has a style of her own. I’m not saying they’re bad; they’re actually good – great, if you want the honest truth. But her writing skills aren't the problems, it’s watching her work until she forgets to sleep; it’s hearing her sigh in frustration, almost to the point of her voice breaking, when she writes on the tablet and it freezes; and it’s the constant reading…reading…reading and the constant writing…writing…writing. Sometimes I have to breathe for her since she doesn't want to do it for herself.

Yet behind her weirdness and her aloof persona, conveys a spirit I wish I had. I want her to stop with this nonsense, but truthfully and honestly, as she would say, I’m glad she’s not. She can’t. It’s not in her. If my better half can switch from meat to meatless in forty days and those forty days are now five years, lose over hundred pounds – not once but twice, and can go from “peasant” to fab if she wants to, you would think she’s tougher than nails, right?

There were moments before she would take heed to my advice. Any of her so-called lightbulb-moments were ceased, thanks to me. Somebody has to do it. And now I feel as though I’m losing the battle with Miss “Funny Name”.

So as I continue to gaze with concern, observing her rigid body language while writing on that damn tablet, I realize one thing: her tenacious essence is why I respect to her to the highest. She tells me all the time that fear is the root as to why people don’t follow their dreams. No one wants to fail, the feeling is horrible; however, the worst part of failure is not trying– and who would want that to be their legacy?

And what's this? 

She heaves a respite sigh, as she covers her face in obvious fatigue. Another sleepless night is apparent. Good. Maybe a nap in dreamland will shed clarity to end this nonsensical mess. 

Then again, maybe not.

She and I will never see eye to eye on this dream of hers. But one thing for certain, she knows how to quell her doubts without uttering a word. You know the voice that lingers in minds to create an inferiority complex? I’ve been good at it for forty-three years, so why stop now?

Sooner or later, Ms. Funny Name will listen. 
Read More
, , , , , , , ,


Barbara Joe Williams is an Amazon bestselling author, indie publisher, and a motivational speaker living in Tallahassee, Florida. She is a Navy veteran, a graduate of Tallahassee Community College, and Florida A & M University. She is the owner of Amani Publishing, LLC, and the co-founder of the Tallahassee Authors Network (TAN).

She has published a variety of books for other authors and the following titles for herself: A Cup of Barbara Joe, Holiday Hotel: A sexy short story, Forgive Us This Day (Anniversary Edition) featured in USA Today, First Class Love, You Don't Even Know My Name (novella), A Writer's Guide to Publishing & Marketing (Volume 2), Double Proposal, Losing My Soul, A Man of My Own, The 21 Lives of Lisette Donavan (Anthology), Moving the Furniture: 52 Ways to Keep Your Marriage Fresh, How I Met My Sweetheart (Anthology), Courtney's Collage, Falling for Lies, Dancing with Temptation, and Forgive Us This Day.

Forgive Us This Day (Anniversary Edition) is a rewritten version of the original title released in November 2004. She has added more background on the main character and more drama for your reading pleasure. 

Imani: Pink Noire is please to welcome bestselling author, Barbara Joe Williams to The Lounge. First off, I'm honored you've taken the time to join me. So, Ms. Barbara, I've read somewhere you began your writing career in your forties. What made you decide to finally pursue this dream?

Barbara: At the age of 42, I experienced a mid-life crisis which caused me to re-examine my life. Basically, I had accomplished all my adult goals except for writing a book. Notice that I said write, not publish. Anyway, I prayed about it that night and the next morning when I woke up, I started typing out all the ideas I had for this story centered around a married couple. Two months later, I had over 200 pages which I shared with only ten close friends. To my amazement, they all read the manuscript in less than two weeks and wanted to buy it...

Prior to your writing career, you've achieved a lot of life experiences through the military and a teaching career, and family. Have that part of your journey inspired you to create story ideas?

Yes, everything that I have experienced in life, military, teaching, and family has prepared me for my writing career. I have used all the things I've learned to bring a heavy dose of reality to my fictional characters. I even set my novel, First Class Love, in the eighties during the time that I was enlisted in the U. S. Navy to keep it authentic. 

Are you more character or plot-driven, and why?

I think my romances are more plot driven because as much as I profile the characters, it's the plot that keeps me writing. The characters can be fully developed, but there has to be an interesting plot to keep the story moving.

What's your writing process? Do you outline by chapter, or go with the flow?

When I wrote my first two novels, I went by a strict outline. But now, I usually come up with a story idea and just start writing. At some point, I might stop and jot down some details or key elements, but it's not the same as outlining. 

You have two new releases, one is titled "A Cup of Barbara Joe", and the second one is a great resource for entrepreneurs titled, "A-Z Marketing Tips: A Motivational Guide to Selling Your Products". Tell us more about these books.

A Cup of Barbara Joe is a collection of things I've learned about life, marriage, motherhood, and people from over fifty years of living. It's basically my take on quotes I've heard in the past and some I've created on my own. The A-Z Marketing Tips was written as a guide to help motivate entrepreneurs to implement a marketing plan. I think a lot of business people have great marketing ideas, but they lack the motivation it takes to get them done. So this book looks at the psychology behind selling your products, it gets you motivated to get up and do something.

Were there any challenges writing both books?

My biggest challenge with writing a book is always time. With my busy family life, I'm constantly on the run. And with my extensive literary catalog, I'm constantly in marketing mode which makes it a challenge to find time to write new material.

We all have started as a novice, feeling that anticipation of our work being seen by the world but to discover the other responsibilities that comes with it. Why wearing an "author hat" isn't enough to be successful in this business?

This is my philosophy: Writing is a hobby, but publishing is a business. Once you're published, you're a literary entrepreneur, and you need to learn the business side to be successful. That means you have to do some research. Whether you read my publishing guidebook or not, you need to research what's happening in the publishing industry.

I've noticed for quite sometime your interaction with readers are amazing. I can tell this is your favorite part being an author. Do you agree?

Yes, it is. Writing is a solitary sport. Publishing is a solitary event. But marketing is a public celebration of your accomplishments! 

What words of advice do you have for up and coming authors?

I would advise new authors to keep promoting their work. A good book today will be a good book ten years from today, but it has to be promoted properly to stay alive.

Finally, I love asking this question to my guests because it conveys a story within a story. So who's your inspiration that help shaped your craft, and if they were here right now, what would you say them?

I love Maya Angelou and applaud all the books that she has published. But Terry McMillan is really the one who inspired me to become a fiction writer. Waiting to Exhale is the first novel that I can remember reading by an African-American female. Terry showed me that we could be authors and make money from our stories. If she was here right now, I would say, "Thank you for paving the way for so many AA authors."

Thank you, Ms. Barbara! This has been an awesome interview. If anyone would like to purchase your work or to find you online, where should they go?

On Sale Now

 Amazon page:
 Barnes & Noble page:
 Facebook page:

Read More
, , , ,


This week, Pink Noire is switching up things. Instead of posting the usual interview on books, secret quirks, and the turning points of an artist life; I want to show you a trailer as to why I created The Lounge in the first place.

Now for a moment, think of the name “Urban Literature”, what is the first thing that comes to mind?

Hood books or how about street literature? Some have accused the genre as glamorizing the realities of drugs and sex? Or suggesting -- as broad as Urban Literature is -- has no place even being called literature.

Is that so?

Now, how about your favorite movie and television shows? Think of what’s hot, especially what you’ve been tweeting lately. Empire is a good one or Scandal. Both shows are a must watch; they’re ratings giants with darn good writing. Or how about your favorite movies, do you remember the Al Pacino classic, Scarface? I understand that did well at the box office.

My point with these comparisons: there are no comparisons.

In this trailer below, Pink Noire’s featured artist, Kaven Brown, conveys the God-honest reality of what’s behind the books. And really, what’s behind the books aren’t different of what’s on television.

I guess you will have to see trailer for yourself, and then read our interview here in The Lounge later this month. And hopefully -- just hopefully, minds will be change.


Kaven Brown is a multi-talented entrepreneur. An author, photographer and producer, who has been making waves in the publishing industry and music video circuit since the release of his first novel, Two Face, a suspense thriller with an urban flair that delves into the world of organized crime, merciless killers and crafty lawyers.

Brown’s latest literary foray is the companion piece to the documentary, Behind Those Books, which is a non-fiction book of the same title. He has written 4 novels, a screenplay, several treatments for music videos and documentaries. Brown is the founder and publisher of The Urban Book Source, an online publication that has focused on urban literature since its inception in 2006. Brown was responsible for designing the website and contributing to many of the sites features. The website has grown from a grassroots following to one of the premiere online websites for urban literature, African American authors and publishers that offers insightful editorials, interviews and book reviews. Brown has photographed several celebrities and his work has appeared in People Magazine, Daily News, TMZ, The New York Post, Essence Magazine and numerous online publications. Brown resides in New York City where he continues to work on photography, writing and producing


Read More
, ,


Saniya was born and raised in New York City's Spanish Harlem. She is a wife and mother of 2 teenage girls and 1 toddler boy.  She currently is active duty military and enjoys writing in here spare time.

Imani: Welcome to The Lounge. Let's start off with a simple icebreaker and begin with your story, just who is Saniya Solis?

Saniya: Who am I? In a nut shell, I grew up in the South Bronx and later moved to Spanish Harlem.  At the age of 18, I joined the military and have been all around the world. I'm currently still in the military and retire in 2016. I have an Associate's in Criminal Justice, a Bachelor's in Business Administration and am currently working on my Master's.  I'm a mother of 3 and a wife.

Tell us more about your latest project. What's the inspiration behind this book.

My latest project is called East River Secret.  The inspiration behind this book is my love for the understanding of the dark side of the human mind.  It is completely different from my first book, Karma, which focused on the emotional battles a person endures in their life.  With East River Secret, I focused on the mental battles a person endures in their life.

Briefly, explain what makes your book different from the vast choices in the same genre?

My book is different because though it is listed under Urban, I like to call it Urban Contemporary Suspense.  Most Urban literature is hard core "ghetto" reflecting on drugs, sex, and money, however, my books have a mixture of everything in it while making relevance to the "ghetto" environment and the  struggles those living in this environment face within themselves.  I have my characters question the "why" in their life.  Why am I going through this?  Why wasn't I raised with a silver spoon?  Why do "my people" blame living in the hood for the reasons their dreams never became a reality.

Tell us more about the development of the characters.

First, I want to stress that the foundation of my character development is ensuring that all my characters are realistic and emotionally in tune to the masses.  I like for my readers to know my character as a "regular" person first, a character that will remind my readers of someone they know, including themselves.  I then like to have my character face a BELIEVABLE situation that again, can happen in real life.  I think that is the key to keeping readers to continue turning the pages.  Readers want to know how or what is the character going to do and most importantly, is it an action the reader could see themselves doing as well?

What have you learned (or still learning) since being in the business?

I've learned that this business is not easy.  You really have to market yourself as well as your book in a variety of ways.  Furthermore, you have to diversify the network of people in your circle in order to learn and get your name out there.

What is your dream collaboration? With whom, and why?

My dream collaboration?  Good question.  To be honest, I've thought of this question numerous times and though I've thought of many well-known authors, I would have to say that I would want to collaborate with a new author because they are just as hungry as I am to become known in this industry. 

Finally, share with us something you've never mentioned publicly since being an author; such as, a quirk or a hidden talent. I'm sure readers would like to know.

I have a quirk of always organizing my groceries on the conveyer belt. I will dig through my cart to make sure I get all the items that can be grouped together out and neatly stack them accordingly.  As for a hidden talent, I can sing.

Short Excerpt:

We were friends for about a year and a half before we took it to the next level. It felt awkward at first. Mainly because he was 18 years older than me and I was used to him being my friend. I always felt like an old soul in a young body so I personally didn’t mind the age difference but we chose to keep our relationship on the low to prevent stare...s and bonchinche. When we first kissed, we accidently bumped teeth, laughed, and blamed it on being nervous. We had just come back from the movies when we first had sex. I remembered how eager he seemed to want to please me. For once, I felt what it was like to have a man really take his time with me. Shaun licked every inch of my body, from the scar on my knee to the juicy flesh of my breast. I watched as he slowly parted my legs, licked his lips and slowly placed his tongue on my clit. I could feel the pressure from his tongue as he sized it up. Then he tilted his head and began to lick in a steady and constant motion, occasionally licking and kissing on the lips just outside my pink palace. He was actually pretty good; gotta love those older men. Most men think they know how to get their grub on but they lick on pussy the way a dog licks its ass; carelessly. I had to open my eyes and see what he was doing. The more I watched him indulge himself in my homemade juices the hotter I got. I guess he felt me staring cuz he returned the stare back as he simultaneously thrust his tongue in and out of my sugar walls. It was the most erotic moment. It was like he was telling me “yea, I’m all in your pussy and you like it!” Right then and there I felt the sexual tension in my body. I began to feel a momentary sense of suspension, quickly followed by an intensely pleasurable feeling that began at my clit and swiftly spread throughout my pelvis. It was like this inner body explosion. In one word it was beautiful. He raised his eyebrows and put a grin on his face then kissed my pussy. I took that gesture as if he felt like he was a one man army and had just conquered the Roman Empire. He was getting ready to get on top of me when I put my hand on top of his chest and gently pushed him back. “My turn.” I seductively whispered.

Read More