Monday, February 23, 2009

Meeting Margaret Johnson-Hodge

I recently had the great honor of meeting the author of my favorite books of all time Butterscotch Blues. A few years ago I was grazing my local library shelves waiting on my next book to jump out at me when the cover of her book caught my eye. I picked up Butterscotch Blues and from chapter one Ms. Johnson-Hodge had me captivated. I devoured that book in one sitting and went back to the library were I checked out every Johnson-Hodge book I could get my hands on.

Not long ago I ran across her home page and nervously sent her an email saying how much I enjoyed her books. Much to my surprise she responded almost immediately. I have cherished that email and every other dialogue between us. She does not host traditional book signings so I was beyond delighted when she started to pop up around town to promote her new book Red Light Green Light.

I finally got the chance to meet her as she attended a small book discussion at a local library branch. (She had surprised the group by popping up the last time they picked one of her books, imagine the surprise on their faces) It was hands down the best book discussion I have attended. Ms. Johnson-Hodge is a pure joy. She is very "real" and laughed, joked and spilled a few secrets that had us sworn to secrecy. She even remembered me from our email dialogue.

In the past few months I have attended book signings diligently on my quest to have my small hardcover library completely signed. Not all of my book signings have made posts here to The Quiet Storm, but this one definitely deserved a spot all its own!

Many thank you's to the wonderful Ms. Johnson-Hodge who had me laughing, crying and cursing for the first time while reading a book. She says her job is well done if you feel anything while you read her stories. "You don't have to like it, but I want you to feel something."

The next time you are wondering the aisles of the bookstore or your local library, check out the novels of Margaret Johnson-Hodge. Her books will take you on a wonderful emotional roller coaster and have you running back to the store for more.

Of course I got a picture with my favorite author...

Monday, February 16, 2009

Fabulous, Really? COOL!!!

Ms.Knowitall has awarded me the "Your Blog is So Fabulous" award. Thank you so much to my beloved blog sister.

I LOVE gifts, especially unexpected ones :)

Go me, go me, go, go, go me! (Doing my best cabbage patch dance, LOL!)
Yay me!!!!

Now, down to business...

Here are the rules:
1. You need to list 5 Addictions that you have.
2. You have to pass this Tag to five (5) or more people with fabulous Blogs.

1. Books - I love a good book. Growing up I would devour books like good food. I have read so many books that you usually have to tell me what the book is about before I can remember it. They were my "escape" from being raised as an only child and being a latch key kid when my mother relocated us to another state. My books are my treasures, if they make it into my hardback library, they will not be loaned out. Oh, and most of them are signed :) I have an obsession for the written word and have journaled most of my life. Those books are kept locked away from prying eyes. Journaling is much cheaper than therapy.

2. Music - Music is my soundtrack for life. Some songs make me smile, laugh and give me warm fuzzies with the first four bars. Good music speaks to my soul and I will not get into what a good African drummer can do ;) I can put on whatever music I am feeling at the moment and sit back with a good glass of wine and waste the day away. I love attending live performances were real bands are playing. I mean performances where there are actual musicians on stage with a singer. Lounge spots with live jazz nights are popping up all over town, I hope it continues to catch on and is not a phase.

3. Great Scenery - I am addicted to nature. I will drive an hour with my furbaby to take him on a hike for 30 minutes if the scenery is good and the weather is nice. I love extremes (mountains and beaches) and dream of owning a mountain or beach front condo. I can imagine sitting on my patio watching the sun rise or set on the mountains or listening to the waves crash along the shore.

4. Eye Candy - Great eye candy will turn my head every time. No disrespect to whomever I may be with at the time, but a great work from God deserves recognition. I do not discriminate on the basis of color and thank the Creator for the many shades, sizes and shapes of men! My weakness is a man of color with neat locks and trimmed facial hair. Whew! What was I saying???

5. Love - Love is the end all to my be all. The beginning of a relationship is like a drug. You can make that person into whoever you want them to be. I love how a relationship forms over time into something you have no control over, but is shaped by actions and emotions and the creation of memories. Love is all around me in many different forms. My family's love for me (and I have a HUGE family), my fam's love for me and my friend's love for me. I am so grateful for the people I have chosen to take this journey called life with me. I couldn't have picked a better group.

I usually buck the system and do what I want to do. I don't do chain letters, so I will not tag anyone. Besides, most of the fabulous blog authors that I read on a regular have already received this award. If they haven't, they are very deserving of it. Visit them when you have time...

LoveBabz - Her blog is all about choosing love over negativity and the struggle that pursues when you do.

Everyday Cooking - Darius' food blog just makes me want to get out my pots and pans. I hope my next man can throw down like him :)

The Words I Type - Ms. Knowitall's highs and lows of everyday life. We are sisters in this life walk journey, and her other blog has great poetry.

Allocation of Solitude - Charles tells it from a male's point of view. The first post I read of his was Representin'. He immediately made it to the blog roll.

I Got Soul - Soul on Ice's spot that is enjoyable because it seems so open and honest. I am not sure he knows that I follow his blog. Wish he posted more often.

There are great blogs out there and the blogsphere has introduced me to wonderful people. See my blog roll on the right to see "What Others are Saying," they all have great blogs and this award would not have been wasted on any of them.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Ready for Love

I have never known real love. Love that is so real it can't be denied when it is seen. I remember the first time love made it's presence known in my world. It appeared as a notion that I hadn't thought about, it appeared as a friend who I spent countless hours talking on the phone with. We took that feeling of comfort, complacency and familiarity with each other as love.

It was not love.

I find myself looking around wherever I go. Do you see the look in his eyes for her? That undeniable "Baby, you make my world okay" look that just takes your breath away. Oh yes, I thought I had found it when I almost married someone who I thought I couldn't go through life without. I remember thinking how comfortable I was with him. How we could talk about anything, but it wasn't love.

It wasn't unconditional.

I remember when I thought I had finally found it. Love was the label I put on it as he showed me worlds that I had not seen, exposed me to things I had only heard about in movies and television. I was different to him and he was new to me. We thought we had it and we walked down an aisle to profess it to God and the rest of the world.

I can now admit that even as I walked down the aisle I knew it wasn't it.

I knew there was something missing, but I fought like hell to make it into love. It ultimately didn't last and I became doubtful that love exists. The word love is thrown around to describe all types of emotions, but hardly used in the context that it should. I want love, real, unabashed, undeniable, can't take another breath or go through another year without you love. The kind that you know, that you know, that you KNOW and you just click.

I have met wonderful men who had me crushing something wicked, beautiful, sexy men who are a great catch. But there was no love, there was not enough there to make me believe that I could make a life with them. I deserve better and those great men deserve something better than someone who is pretending to love them.

I am ready for the possibilities of love again. It took me a long time to get over my baggage and trust issues and learn to live in the moment. With each misstep and stumble I always said God has one wicked sense of humor.

I just wish some things were not so complicated. Even the music I listen to now reflects love, her words are straight from my soul and my spirit to the world...

Monday, February 2, 2009

The Interview

I agreed to be interviewed by Monique. I guess I was feeling a little adventurous. Anyway, here goes...

The Rules
1. If you want to participate, leave me a comment saying, “Interview me.” (And your e-mail address, please.) 2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. I get to pick the questions. 3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions. 4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post. 5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

1. Have you ever been rejected by a crush?
Of course, it was my first crush on a white guy and he didn't feel women of color like that but would flirt something awful. It was a long time ago and maybe that is why I now keep my crushes under wraps until I know he is feeling me as well.

2. What does your screenname mean?
KayC is a nickname my oldest and dearest friend gave to me the first day we met. It has now been over 18 years so it apparently stuck. The Quiet Storm was my line name, I decided to to use the two together when a co-worker ironically called me Quiet Storm and had no idea of my pledge days. The two together describes me perfectly, merging the past and the present.

3. What is your greatest strength? Weakness?
My ability to see all sides of a situation. Because of that I also get my greatest weakness of over thinking things. I will seek advise and contemplate for days or weeks sometimes before I make a final decision. But once my mind is made up, that is pretty much it.

4. If someone were to go through your nightstand, what would they be surprised to find?
Every birthday, anniversary, wedding, baby shower invitation that I have received in the past eight years. I never throw that stuff away. Funny, I like a good story and they provide plenty. *I don't keep the good stuff in the night stand ;)

5. On a guy: Boxers, briefs, or boxer briefs?
Depends on his body. Boxers are sexy on some men but if his body is right, definitely boxer briefs.