AUTHOR’S SHELF: JERALD HOWARD
FBE: Where are you from?
JH: I was born in Bartow, Flordia. I was raised in Huger, South Carolina. I typically reside in Tampa, Florida or Indianapolis, Indiana. I do a lot of traveling.
FBE: And how old are you?
JH: I’m 27.
FBE: How long have you been writing?
JH: I can actually say that I’ve been writing all of my life.
FBE: Writing takes a lot of work and dedication what made you decide to write?
JH: When I was eight or nine, I thought it would be cool to be an author (he laughs). I’ve always loved reading and I love getting lost in a well told story. I didn’t decide until about a year ago that I’d actually write a book. Once it was published, I received so much positive feedback that I’ve written another. I think I’ve found my calling.
FBE: Interesting, do you write poetry as well as novels?
JH: I write lots of poetry. Normally I use my poetry to help me develop story lines in my novels. Most of my poems tell a story.
FBE: WhaT genres do you focus on?
JH: When you read my novels, you’ll be able to find a little of everything in them. I like to classify them as “life”. My novels are African American fiction. They are inspirational, educational, erotic, and so much more.
FBE: I see you have two novels, will you do more?
JH: Yes! I’m actually in the process of completing my third.
FBE: What do you currently have published?
JH: The first is “One Life…One Night”. The second is “This Is What I Signed Up For.”
FBE: Who is your publisher, explain why you chose them?
JH: I am signed with Anexander Books Publishing. I chose them because I love their vision and direction.
FBE: Tell more about your latest piece and what is it about?
JH: My latest published novel is entitled, “This Is What I Signed Up For”. It’s as real as fiction can get. It’s a fast-paced, drama-filled read that you will definitely be able to relate to. The characters will draw you in so deeply that you’ll be able to feel all that they feel. Readers of all genres will be able to appreciate this novel that is told from both a female and male point of view. The main message readers should take from this novel is to be careful of the things you do and say. Know that EVERY action, no matter how big or small, has a reaction. You can never know for sure how the things you do and say will affect someone else and/or yourself. We reap what we sow, and we sow what we reap. Every action has a reaction or a consequence we must keep.
FBE: I have to know what or who inspires you to make your dreams come true?
JH: I really just have a love for writing and a love for telling a story. I love entertaining and educating people with my books. Readers of my work inspire me to continue to write with the feedback they give.
FBE: Who is your favorite author?
JH: I don’t really have a favorite, but I’m a huge fan of Eric Jerome Dickey and Alex Haley.
FBE: What are you currently reading?
JH: At the moment I am writing. I don’t read anything, but the Bible while I’m writing.. After I’m done with my novel, I’ll probably read and Eric Jerome Dickey or Kimberla Lawson Roby book.
FBE: What are the advantages/disadvantages of self publishing?
JH: The advantages of self publishing are you don’t have to wait for your book to be published or accepted by a traditional publishing company. The disadvantages would probably be the costs. You have to sometimes pay a pretty hefty fee to have your book published. You also have to do a whole lot of marketing.
FBE: Have you faced any challenges as a young author? I
JH: haven’t really faced many challenges. I’ve built up a pretty supportive fan base. Everyone who reads any of my work tends to appreciate it. The biggest challenge is staying patient and remembering that because things don’t happen on my time doesn’t mean it’s not on time. God’s time is always on time.
FBE: What advice can you give aspiring authors and entrepreneurs?
JH: I’d say to always be encouraged. Everyone had to start someplace. If you really want something, go and get it.
FBE: What do you believe the future has in store for the author Jerald Howard?
JH: In the future, I see myself with about 15 novels written. Hopefully I’ll be able to help other up and coming authors out the way some have helped me.
FBE: How can people get in contact withyou and purchase your books?
JH: I can be reached by email. JeraldJHoward@yahoo.com My books can be purchased at www.JERALDJHOWARD.com
When ordered from that site, half of all proceeds go towards the research and development of a cure for breast cancer.
Here’s a piece of his latest poem “Black Woman You Are” :
I couldn’t care less about your hue or complexion
What I really love is your strength and direction
For centuries you’ve found a way to overcome
You make no excuses…you just get it done
Black woman I love you in every way
Black woman I love you everyday
You’re filled with love and pride…determination and resilience
I admire your courage, your beauty, and your brilliance
AKA, SGR, ZPB, or DST
It really doesn’t matter what’s your sorority
And no disrespect to my sisters with your wondrous calls
But the truth is I couldn’t care less if you pledged at all
Because no Greek letter or word can define who you are
That’s not what makes you such a shining star
It’s your essence and grace that sets you afar
Your love and your beauty makes you better than par
You’ve been lied to, raped, and beaten…cheated on and mistreated
But no matter how others scoff, you’re still there when you’re needed
And we don’t say it nearly as much as we need to
But black women, your men appreciate you
Lemonade out of lemons you continue to make
Even when we are the lemons, you refuse to forsake
Whilst we moan and complain and fuss and cuss
You continue to believe in and encourage us
And we love you so much more than we could ever show
Even though I use this poem to try and let you know
These words that I speak only begin to capture
An inkling, of how you cause such rapture
Rapture in the sense of pure ecstasy
Move brisk like the wind and stand next to me
No matter how I confabulate, articulate, verbalize or vocalize
My words fall short of what you are in our eyes
Will Smith is not legend…it is you who are legend
You are our queens…you who are destined
Destined for greatness…destined for success
When God gave us you, he decided to bless
To bless us with your goodness…to bless us with your grace
If excellence had one, you’d be its face
I love your lips. I love your hips. I love your attitude
Let me see where else I dare allude
Maybe to your sweet and lovely thighs
Thighs when spread, they set forth cries
Cries of passion…cries of bliss
The cries of my baby boy’s lips I kiss
The cries of our children pushed forth from your womb
The seeds we plant; the flowers you bloom
You’re my grandmother, cousin, auntie, and niece
You’re hope, you’re love, you’re happiness and peace
You’re our mothers, sisters, daughters, and wives
You’re the reason we’re here…you are our lives
You are our triumph and celebration…the reason we gloat
This is for you black women. The realest thing I ever wrote.
Click on the link below to visit Jerald’s Facebook page:
www.facebook.com/pages/jerald-j-howard/17322734698 Join to stay updated with Jerald’s novels, poems, and videos. Also visit this page to win one of his novels!!