Last week, while being interviewed by the lovely ladies of Hip-Hop is For Lovers, I was asked if I was okay with the term “urban lit” being used in regard to my novel Guestlist.
At the time, I said that I didn’t have a problem with it. After all, self-published urban lit pioneers like Vickie Stringer, Nikki Turner, and Teri Woods were massive influences on how I put Guestlist together and readied it for he masses.
But not necessarily on the story or how it was written.
And so, after thinking on it a bit more, I have to say that I don’t believe Guestlist is urban lit at all.
Posted in Books, Cool Story Bro, Life, Memphis, Op-Ed, Writers, writing
Tagged Amy Sohn, BEAUTIFUL by Jay Fingers, Candace Bushnell, Cathy Yardley, Chick Lit, Colson Whitehead, GUESTLIST by Jay Fingers, HH4L, Hip-Hop is For Lovers, Lauren Weisberger, Memphis, Nikki Turner, Orange Mound, Sag Harbor, Tennessee, Teri Woods, Teri Woods Publishing, Triple Crown Publications, Urban Lit, Vickie Stringer, Will Write For Shoes
Once again I have been fortunate enough to spend Christmas with Mama Fingers and to see some of my family and friends. The holiday season has become increasingly important to me as the years have gone by. I don’t know what you want to ascribe this feeling to: nostalgia, sentimentality, old age. The only thing I wish were different is the amount of time I have to spend with family during the holidays.
The pic above shows the mantle above Mama Fingers’s fireplace. Festive, no?
Whatever you celebrate, whatever you’re doing, whomever you’re spending time with, I hope you’re enjoying the holidays this year. I wish you all nothing but love, life, and happiness!
Jay Continue reading
The other day I walked around my old Memphis, Tennessee neighborhood of Orange Mound to take in sights both familiar and foreign, get a sense of the nabe’s current vibe, and do a teeny tiny bit of research on my second novel, tentatively titled BEAUTIFUL.
Second novel? you say. But the first one hasn’t even been released yet!
I know, Dear Readers, I know. GUESTLIST isn’t even out yet and I’m already talking about what I’m doing next. But hey, that’s how you stay ahead of the game. Gotta be forward thinking. Can’t be stagnant. Can’t rest on one’s laurels.
(By the way, GUESTLIST is my debut novel and it releases February 28, 2012.)
Every time I visit Memphis, it is a must that I stop by the Memphis Pizza Café. They’ve several locations in the city, but I prefer the location on Park Avenue in East Memphis.
The Café Supreme is my favorite pie: we’re talkin’ a thin crust topped with mozzarella, Canadian bacon, pepperoni, beef, sausage, green peppers, mushrooms, and onions. Nom! Pair it with a local brew from Ghost River or a bottle of Texas’s finest Shiner Bock and you’re about to have one hell of a party in your mouth.
As a youth, my favorite radio station, for the longest time, was FM100. That means nothing to you, I know, but FM100 was the pop music station. They didn’t play any urban music (read: hip-hop or R&B) at the time so, thanks to disc jockeys like Tom Prestigiacomo, I was able to get my white people music on.
This is one of the few pictures I have of my father and I together. It makes me laugh because I remember when it was taken. I was maybe 13 or 14 and I’d just gotten off work from my job at the main branch of the Memphis Public Library. (The shirt I have on has the MIFA logo on it; I was part of the organization’s “Teen Job Services” program and had to wear the shirt while at work.)
Instead of going home, I went to my father’s job, which was downtown. He was a civil engineer for the Memphis Corps of Engineers and worked in the Federal Building. He asked me to meet him after I’d gotten off work because the COE wanted to feature me in their company newsletter. I’d written a poem about a racially charged experience I had while biking around a (then) relatively all-white neighborhood, and the poem had gone on to win several awards, get published in a national literary magazine, and even earned me a Congressional commendation. Needless to say, my father was proud.
Last night, Candace Bushnell made an appearance at Barnes and Noble in my hometown of Memphis, Tennessee. The author is currently on a book signing tour to promote her latest novel, Summer and The City, the sequel to her teen-centric The Carrie Diaries, which released on April 26.
Posted in Books, Event, Memphis, Photography, Writers
Tagged Barnes and Noble, Candace Bushnell, Memphis, Miami, New York City, NYC, Summer and The City, The Carrie Diaries