Beauty and Race

Warning: This post contains strong images and unfiltered truths.

For centuries, yes even now, Black physical features have been considered unattractive or “ugly.” Broad noses, full lips, round hips and round buttocks were a long standing source of mockery geared towards Black people. If you were to take a look back at Black caricatures, it typically featured oversized lips, bigger than broader noses, our buttocks were made to look more oversized than what it really was and of course, we can’t forget the “Black” face.

Keep reading because I’m going to post a snippet of Coal Black and de Sebben Dwarfs at the end. Smh at the spelling. They knew what they were doing…

As a Black woman, and woman of color, I have to wonder why such caricature features were thrust into the limelight as “ugly“, yet at the very same time, you had a lot of racist White men running to sleep with Black women. Society likes to keep that dark dirty secret hidden, but Black people know better. Ask any Black person to pull out pictures of their past relatives and you will unfortunately see products of racist interracial relationships. It was painfully evident in my Grandfather and on his side of the family.

Say what you want, but such disgusting and racist behavior was used and is still used to lower the self-esteem of Black people and in a lot of cases, it has worked. A lot of Black people have been getting surgery to make their Black nose more European, others have lightened their skin, and some have even reduced the size of lips. Some Black women have even opted to wear their hair straight because society says Afro-textured hair is ugly or “unprofessional.” How sad.

On the flip side, you have White women getting lip injections to try and mimic the full lips typically found in Black women. Others have rushed to get butt injections or implants because now it seems that having round buttocks and hips is sexy and attractive. I got news for you, it always has been. I know within my own family there were racist and prejudiced White men who foamed all out the mouths at stacked women like my Mom, aunts and her cousins when they were growing up in the 50’s and 60’s. You won’t find too many White Grandfathers admitting that. Yes, I said it.

I love my Black features, especially my full lips because they go perfectly with my medium length eye lashes and my large eye folds. Whenever I’m dressed up for a night out on the town, you’d be surprised how many White business men approach me. Some I can tell have a “Black” fetish that they want to live out, but Anita is not going to be a Jezebel experience for no man. Sadly, some Black women have because they crave the approval of White men. How sad.

Black people have been the largest target of hatred and mockery when it comes to our physical characteristics which has in turn, affected the self-esteem of millions of Black people around the world. That has to change. The cycle must be broken. Beauty is not found within one race, but all races. My Black is beautiful and your (insert race) is beautiful too!

Click here for a brief snippet of Coal Black and de Sebben Dwarfs.

Until next time…

Don’t Be Afraid To Wait (Sometimes)

I was due to appear in a few literary magazines and articles not too long ago, but I decided to delay my feature. Why? Because the timing didn’t feel right to me. It was a feeling deep down inside that I couldn’t shake and I felt strongly that I needed to wait. Thankfully, the people I’ve been in contact with and working with have been both patient and understanding.

Looking back, I’m glad I waited. You see, if I had of went ahead and did those features, I wouldn’t have hardly anything big to talk about (at that time) in regards to my accomplishments as an indie author. It’s a different story now (no pun intended). I have quite a few things I can acknowledge in my upcoming features, but I’ll only list two. The first one being that The Chronicles of Neffie is being considered as a book to read during Black History month at a few schools. The second one being my recent indieBRAG Medallion award for The Chronicles of Neffie in the category of historical fiction.

I can say from personal experience that there are times in your life where it’s okay for you to wait; even if you’re a little afraid to. I was and that’s the truth! If it’s meant to happen for you, it’ll happen and that opportunity will still be there for you when you’re ready. Don’t be afraid to trust your gut instincts and if the situation calls for it, seek out some helpful advice from someone you know and trust. I know I did.

Waiting turned out to be one of the best writing decisions I’ve ever made. Get used to seeing the name A.L. Gibson in the future. I’m going to leave it at that.

Until next time, keep being the best person you can possibly be as you continue to go after your dreams. Giving up is NOT an option.

Reader Appreciation Post

This author / blogger is over the moon. Since penning The Chronicles of Neffie in the Fall of last year and releasing it this year in February, I have been getting so many letters and DMs from readers who state this is a book every American should read. Not only that, many have shared the sentiment that this is a book that should be read in schools! πŸ“š

Readers have been so touched with The Chronicles of Neffie that some have even reached out to their local schools to tell them about this story. Let’s just say I’m about to send copies to a few schools and Universities. Honored, humbled, grateful and thankful!πŸ™πŸΎπŸ™ŒπŸΎ

I just want to say thank you to all of you who were touched, moved and inspired by The Chronicles of Neffie. I always said I wanted to pen a book that would hook readers and I think I found that in Neffie. May she continue to go on and inspire both children and adults.

It’s a wonderful feeling when you have family, friends and readers supporting your written works. It motivates me even more. I’m sending nothing but hugs and love to all of you because I wouldn’t have such opportunities if it wasn’t for you! πŸ€—β€πŸ€—β€πŸ€—

Until next time…

Neffie (Maybe) Going To School

Yesssss, you read right! When the new school year begins this Fall, Neffie may be a point of discussion at a few schools and universities! I am aiming for it to be discussed for the month of February for Black History month…I think I can pull it off. At least I certainly hope to.

This is still in the works so it’s not set in stone yet, but I feel pretty good about it. I’ve received some good feedback with what’s about to take place in the coming weeks and my heart is very grateful and full. I have a few other things planned in the next coming months which makes me feel a little more confident. Those who know me on a deep and personal level know that I won’t stop until I see something all the way through.

I’m going to make sure tens of thousands if not more know the name Neffie. That’s a promise. Watch me do it…

Until next time…

At Ease

In two weeks, copies of my first novel series The Chronicles of Neffie will be sent to a few libraries. I am so glad my ratings on Goodreads are still looking good and that Midwest Book Review gave it a good review! The libraries are excited to have Neffie and I am excited for them to have her too!

Wow, my book is going to be in a few libraries in two weeks. Unreal, but even with that being said, I want it to be in even more! I think I can pull it off if I keep trying. My heart is telling me I can. To all my fellow writers, where is your writing journey leading you? My journey has been a little bumpy and at times a bit turbulent, but it’s starting to smooth out now. Finally…

Until next time…

Sarah E. GoodeΒ 

Good Evening to you all. I hope that everyone is still doing well. This will be my last post this evening since I will be busy making preparations for my upcoming novel The Chronicles of Neffie next week. Are you ready to learn something new? Of course you are. Let’s do this! πŸ˜‰

Sarah E. Goode. Hmmm? Does that name ring a bell? Probably not to most people even though her invention has taken on many shapes throughout the years…

Sarah E. Goode was an African American inventor of what was called during her time a “cabinet bed.” What made her and her invention so significant was the fact that she had it patented. As history has shown, many African Americans invented a lot of things, but due to slavery they were unable to get it patented. The laws at that time allowed the slave masters to receive the credit, the patent and the recognition for the invention rather than the slaves. Why? Because slaves were viewed as property and nothing else. How sad…

Sarah E. Goode’s invention of the cabinet bed would take on new shapes and become what is now known as the Murphy bed. Some credit her invention with the invention of the Pull Out bed since it is from the same concept.

Sarah came up with this idea out of necessity to save on space since most African Americans lived in small or cramped places. Her invention doubled as a desk and a bed like some of the Murphy beds that we see today. You have to admit, that was pretty genius of her to come up with something like that during her time! Go Sarah!

Sarah E. Goode stands out to me for two reasons. One, she looks a lot like my Maternal Great, Great Aunties and two, she held on to her idea and invention long enough to get it patented so no one else would take the credit! She was a smart, smart lady. You cannot blame her for doing that. The next time you think about ordering a Murphy bed or Pull Out bed, think of Sarah E. Goode. Millions owe her chic modern design a lot of thanks for a good night’s rest! 

Until next time…

Viola Gregg Liuzzo

Does the name above ring a bell? Many have never heard of her even though she played a pivotal role during the Civil Rights movement. If you’ve never heard of her, I’m going to educate you briefly about her.

Viola Gregg Liuzzo was a White woman and mother of five who was killed in Selma, Alabama on March 25, 1965. Why was she killed? Because she was shuttling Black Civil Rights activists back and forth in an effort to try and keep them safe. Viola participated in many marches because she herself came from a poor background and grew up in the heavily segregated South. Primarily in Tennessee.

Viola was passionate about life and she wanted everyone regardless of their color to be treated fairly and with dignity and respect. Sadly, her efforts came to a tragic end when a group of Klan members gunned her down after spotting a Black male in the car with her. She was a “race mixer” and a traitor in their eyes and because of that, they decided to take her life. How sad.

Her assailants would go through a number of trials that resulted in acquittals and hung juries. In short, she hardly received any justice even though three of her attackers received a light sentence. When I see how the amount of racism, prejudice and hate is rearing its ugly head in unprecedented numbers, I think to myself how such ideas and mentalities are a waste of life.

If you are going to dislike someone, base it off of their character and not their skin color, ethnic background or socioeconomic status. To take a person’s life because they are of another race, ethnic background or because they choose to be friends with a different race is disgusting.

Its time to come together now more so than ever. Don’t believe me? Just take a look around. Until next time…