Posts Tagged ‘Writing’


Urban Fiction News magazine has officially been launched and if you would like to continue receiving its newsletter please visit and hit subscribe. It has more reviews, more company spotlights, more writing resources than ever before. Thanks for all of your support and look forward to seeing you all there.

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Just a quick blurb as I have been getting tons of emails with authors asking very good questions. Questions have been ranging from where can they find a good editor, can I recommend a good cover designer, how can they spread the word about their new books? Many of these answers can be found by searching through my previous posts as I try to cover many of these topics for everyone. However, The NO Bull Method to Publishing is also available if you’d like to have all of the information right at your fingertips. Thanks again everyone and much success on your literary journey!!!!

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As I am always excited to share news and going on’s of Urban Fiction News. UFN was recently nominated for the 2013 Black Weblog Awards with the winner to be announced on November 02, 2013. I wanted to take a moment and say a special thank you to everyone who has followed my blog, left a comment, sent in a review request or even emailed me.

My goal is and has always been to even up the playing field for writers by giving them real information and real resources. Knowledge really is power and the more you know the better your odds of success. I love providing book reviews and truly feel humbled that writers wish to share their “babies” with me. For years self-published authors were at a disadvantage and were not taken seriously. This was true because traditional publishers had access to resources and services not available to everyone else. This is especially true for Urban Fiction authors, where the genre was shunned and told it had no market.

I believe any writer wishing to pursue a career in the literary world should and can. Urban Fiction News will always thrive to be your #1 resource and to make sure indie/self-published authors become more and more competitive. I am always open to hearing your needs  as well as going the distance to provide resources you didn’t know you needed.


I was invited to read A Bucket Full of Lies written by Robert K. Swisher jr. The book follows the life of Bob Roosevelt an ex-military man/Hippie looking for love but finding none. He takes up a journey of self-exploration that leads him into limitless danger. He has a rather outspoken Guardian Angel that has a taste for fast women and a heaven sent purpose of protecting Mr. Roosevelt. One night at a greasy spoon restaurant in the small town of Des Moines Iowa he runs into an old friend with large problems. The story falls under mystery however, I found the Guardian angel a bit of an un-welcomed distraction. His fore sight often gave away the next string of “could have been exciting” events. I would have much liked the story better without the wayward angel sent to give the story away.

Overall Mr. Swisher tells a good tale and the tone of his story is believable. I rated the story 3 stars due to its lack of mystery as it is intended to be a tale of suspense. To find your copy of A Bucket Full of Lies visit the link below.


When you are trying to impress people with words, the more you say, the more common you appear, and the less in control. Even if you are saying something banal, it will seem original if you make it vague, open-ended, and sphinx like. Powerful people impress and intimidate by saying less. The more you say, the more likely you are to say something foolish. 

A passage taken from one of my favorite books The 48 Laws of Power (Robert Greene) I wanted to share with my readers something that has been making me reflect on the power of words. Never has the above statement been so true. I receive lots of requests for reviews and advice and in my line of business I have many people ask for a service only to offer up an explanation of their situation or “too much information” in most cases they are pouring out reasons why I shouldn’t help them. This has led me to begin thinking about talking too much as it relates to writing.

As writers we tend to think more is better. However, it can actually have the reverse effect. I will give a few examples below along with a few reasons why saying less can actually help your cause.

“Talking” too much in your query Letter

A query letter is supposed to be a brief introduction. It introduces a publisher to you, your writing style and the work you wish them to publish. I have noticed the biggest mistake many writers make is over explaining their work. Quick example:

Dear Mr. Publisher, 

My name is so and so and I would love to send you a copy of my manuscript it’s about a man who ran away from home. I am new to the writing game but all of my family and friends think I have potential. I believe you will love it if you give it a chance. There are a few errors I am having worked on but will send it to you and will take any advice you have to help with the finished product……..

I don’t know about you but that clearly reads “Amateur, unprofessional, unsophisticated” and the list can go on and on. When approaching a publisher present yourself and your work professionally even if you are unsure of the writing game.  Keep things short and to the point. Add a bit of confidence but steer clear of overt arrogance. Remember you are coming to them for something but you are a potential asset.

In examining the above example the first thing that should stand out as being wrong is the name introduction and its request. ” My name is so and so and I would love to send you a copy of my manuscript”  Never introduce yourself and then state what you would love to do. Of course you would love to get your book in their hands but so would the thousands of other writers who send in submissions every week. Your introduction should state your name but also tell them who you are and the general reason for your query. By keeping things professional it shows that you are not a newbie in the industry or that you don’t know proper etiquette.

Saying Less Gets You Further

Has anyone ever been intrigued by the silent, mysterious type? They seldom speak but when they do it’s usually powerful, insightful or has a thought-provoking response? They are mysterious and by nature humans are curious and challenge seeking. A person who gives less may find themselves always surrounded by others seeking to figure them out or please them. Now on the reverse of that have you ever been around a person who talks so much it makes you want to run from them. Most likely you avoid them at every opportunity or they may start to contradict themselves. The same goes for writing. Only state what is necessary but do it in a way that it is both professional and appealing.

Never allow your over zealous or uncertainty to cause you to talk your way out of a publishing deal. Publishers have limited time and they are more likely to choose a writer who is confident and self-assured. Don’t give them any reason to say no before they read your masterpiece.











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Despite the unappetizing book cover the story is good enough to sink your teeth into.  This short story gives readers an inside look into a collection of ex-military men on a mission. It’s very real depiction of Chicago street life is picked straight from the headlines. The story starts off on a train station and quickly leads to a bout of payback on the cities notorious criminals. The mission is simple to eliminate criminals that beat, or avoid justice. What I found most interesting about the author’s writing style is his narrative. I felt myself comparing the narrative to my favorite show “Burn Notice”

Its style is very descriptive, almost like they are trying to tell you a secret so you had better lean close enough to hear or you just might miss it. Overall all I enjoyed the read and would recommend it to any reader looking for a bit more insight into Chicago street life and how easily things could be handled if ex-military decided to get involved. The only things I found a bit disturbing was how the author occasionally spoke directly to the reader. This could be a bit off-putting but other than that a great read.  I would have also liked to see him provide more details into the lives of each character or at least the main character.

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With growth comes controversy and with controversy comes exposure! Urban fiction has been breaking down walls in the literary world. It has out sold many popular mainstream titles and has also created more millionaires in its short bout in the lime light. Though modern urban fiction is only a new age twist on an old school revolution it’s still relevant. Just like clock work urban fiction has been stirring up both good and bad press with its legs rooted in the ever controversial hip hop culture. However, it may come as a shock to many of its fans that the world has been calling it literary poison that has corrupted black homes and provokes bad parenting.

Now before all of you urban fiction book lovers get all riled up I wanted to share a post written by a fellow blogger.  I ran across a blog post entitled “Hated” which is written by a fellow blogger. In her post she shares a very unpleasant and undeniably disrespectful encounter with a group of young black men in a gas station. As she relays her story she mentions black mothers yelling at their children in the streets,  She states that these women sound frustrated as if they don’t want their children. She also states the behavior is directly related to these women reading Urban Fiction Novels that promote women being whores and bad mothers. Urban Fiction is a poison that should be banned (paraphrasing on the banned)

I being both a writer of fiction and urban fiction thought I should speak up and my comment along with my fellow blogger’s post will be at the bottom of my page. Before I ask my audience their opinion I would like to post my own first. Urban fiction is not the creator of its environment merely a product of it. Long before there was the first urban fiction tale was the real life experience these tales were born from. I have always thought it interesting to see African-American expressions of art, music, theater and sports degraded and belittled because of its raw, direct and in your face approach. I also have always found it interesting how other more ‘mainstream’ genres are not judged with the same level of harshness. Mainstream genres and expressions of art are rooted more in fantasy and clouds realism by providing its readers with a sense of detached wonderment. Even the so-called “American Dream” is a mirage designed to keep individuals ever reaching but seldom obtaining.

Urban fiction just like its mainstream counterparts is a form of entertainment allowing its readers to live vicariously through their stories. It is very similar to the popular stories that have been gracing television for year and years “Guiding Light, All my Children” to name a few.  People love drama in every form so hearing that urban fiction is contributing to black women not being good mothers is absurd. Urban fiction is not responsible for how women treat their children no more than the stories are responsible for people committing adultery or killing or is it? If we are going to compare we must be fair in our judgment and place it all on the examining block which means you must appropriately and fairly credit all the wrong in the world to every form of entertainment or literary genre.

What Do You Think? 

Please comment and share, what are your thoughts on urban fiction creating bad mothers.  Is the world right in its judgments and perceptions of the genre? Let us know!

Here is the link to my fellow bloggers post and my comment. Sure you will find it both interesting and down right sad