The Beauty of Diversity 

I absolutely, positively love diversity. It is a beautiful thing and a lovely sight to behold. I love the fact that I have a colorful variety of friends from different racial backgrounds and cultures. To me, it makes life more rich! When we were living all across the state of Florida (my father was in the Navy), I had a lush variety of Hispanic friends. I started learning Spanish at an early age because the parents of all my Hispanic friends refused to speak English when I was around. They could speak English very well, but that was their way of immersing me into their culture and making me apart of their family. That is why I have so many Spanish and Latin nicknames and I love it!!! 

The odd looks my friends and I get everytime we go out for lunch or dinner is priceless. I guess there are still a lot of people who are shocked to see Africans, African Americans, Native Americans, Hispanics, Jews, Indians, Caucasians, Italians and Asians all laughing and having a good time together. The cultural ambiance and thick accents must make some people weary and a bit confused. Yet, we are all comfortable amongst each other and see each other as more than friends; more like family. 

Yes, my round table of friends includes a variety of genetically different faces and racial backgrounds, but you know what? I would not have it any other way. Diversity is one of the best cultural experiences in the world, yet there are millions of people who have no clue on how to experience it or how to make the best of it. Diversity adds color to the world and it enlightens you in ways you would not expect. Sitting at a table full of people who look the same or talk the same is BLEH and BORING! *YAWNS PROFUSELY*

Ah, put me at a table with a group of vibrant, honest people who come in a range of colors and hail from a variety of different backgrounds. Now that is a table I prefer to sit at and chit chat. 

Until next time… 

Writer Barriers 

It has been said that writing is one of the greatest gifts. If we really think about it, it is. Think of your favorite magazine, journal, television show or movie. Someone had to sit down and write it. It takes an amazing imagination and a passion for writing to develop articles, books, television shows and movies that captivate the minds and hearts of people. Are you not glad that someone took the time to pen your favorite book, magazine, television show or movie? I know I am. 

Sometimes writers are advised to pick and choose what they write about carefully. I experienced that myself when I embarked on my writing journey to land a literary agent. In so many words I was advised to “pretty up” Poka City Blues, but that was something I refused to do. Some of the most memorable books and movies of all time were once bucked against because the subject matter or material was deemed “too sensitive” for major audiences. For example, Alice Walker’s The Color Purple. 

In the end, every writer has a choice to write about what he or she deems as important or worthy to be written. That is the beautiful thing about writers. We all have our own niche and writing style. Regardless of what you choose to pen or write, just know that there  are readers out there who will appreciate and be inspired by what you have written. Write what suits you, but most importantly, write what moves you. When you write from the heart, you can rest assured that your material is coming from the right place. 

Until next time… 

Strong, Brave and Gritty 

Yes, those words describe my next literary work perfectly. I’m about to embark on writing my second novel and I can’t wait to start on it. Once again I’m drawing inspiration from within my own family to craft another unconventional and inspiring story. 

It took several months for my next novel idea to take shape, but that doesn’t bother me one bit. I don’t like to force an idea for writing, I’d much rather it come to me on its own. If you ask me, it’s much better that way. Once I decide on my next novel’s title, I’m going to post it here. My titles, like with anything I write, has to be different. Any other way just wouldn’t be right or acceptable to me. 

I’m also brainstorming different book covers as well. It’s very important to me that my book covers reflect what my stories are about. To me, that just makes sense. I anticipate my second novel’s release mid January or February of 2018. Are you ready? I know I am. This is going to be fun!! Stay tuned for updates, giveaways and teasers. 

Until next time… 

03/18/2017

You see that date? That is the date of my FIRST author meet and greet!! After a copyright fiasco and a formatting issue, I am finally able to start scheduling author meet and greets. This has been a long time coming. I have heard many times that the hardest thing for an independent writer is getting your paperback book copyrighted, properly formatted and developing a loyal fan base. Now that I have the first two just about finished, I can focus more on the third one. 

My blog is slowly but surely attracting more readers who appreciate my no holds barred writing style and my candid approach on sensitive subject matter. For a while, it was just me and only me. That is no joke. I could not get a subscriber or follower to save my life in the beginning. Thankfully, that is no longer the case for BookingAnita. Anytime I receive a notification that someone has followed or subscribed to my blog, I get a little emotional on the inside. It is one of the best feelings in the world to me and it is a feeling that will never, ever get old. 

Columbus, Georgia I am on my way in a few weeks! I will be posting the location soon. If you happen to be in that area, I would love for you to stop by. If you hear loud boisterous laughter echoing in the air, then you know you are at the right place. Come join the crowd. You will not be disappointed in what this shameless quirky writer has to offer. What is better than a quirky writer? A quirky writer with an intense sense of humor. I am a firm believer that laughter is good for the soul. 

I will be posting pictures on my blog of all my author meet and greets as well as the locations. What I am looking forward to the most is taking selfies and exchanging hugs with readers. Man, just the thought of it warms my soul. 

Until next time… 

Exciting News for Poka City Blues

Today is an exciting day for me, my family and my debut novel Poka City Blues. This gripping novel that I self-published as an eBook over a year ago will soon be available worldwide in Barnes and Noble and Books-A-Million.  Never would I have imagined that an eBook I self-published on Amazon would be requested in paperback by so many readers and not only that, to have a guaranteed place in book giants like Barnes and Noble and Books-A-Million. Just the thought of knowing that in a few weeks Poka City Blues will be available in a number of other book stores blows me away. Nobody really knows just how hard I had to work to get to that point except for my family. There were many days when I would come home tired from work, but I knew I had to grab my paper and pen to write. There were many nights when all I wanted to do was lay down and go to sleep, but I pushed through the fatigue and my burning eyes so that I could pen this emotional story.

aviary-image-1473609720427

Poka City Blues has been well received as an eBook and it has even been eligible for a few awards. Even though it did not win any awards as an eBook, it was an honor to know that it was at least nominated or made it to the semi-finals and finals.  I for one cannot wait to see the future of Poka City Blues when it makes its paperback debut in a number of book stores. One thing is for sure, I do not regret the setbacks and disappointments that came along the way as I wrote this book. Those setbacks and drawbacks were just preparing me for one of my biggest comebacks. Stay tuned for updates and book signings.

Until next time…

Underneath the Pecan Tree: A Different Kind of Love Story

A few days ago I finished polishing up my upcoming short story entitled Underneath the Pecan Tree. I cannot tell you how excited I am to be able to pen a love story that is not only different, but is unlike anything that has ever been written. I love writing stories that stray away from what is considered “safe” or “the norm” because it allows me the opportunity to be more creative with my writing. Underneath the Pecan Tree is a story that is full of Southern charm, strong family bonds and of course, love.  I also threw in a few other surprises, but you will have to read the story to find out. I cannot wait for readers to delve into this story and meet Sadira and Casim. You are going to love these two and after reading this story, you may just want to read even more about them. Who knows? There might be a follow up story in the works.

Pre-Order your copy here and let the anticipation begin!

anitagipson_Underneath_the_Pecan_Tree

Until next time…

Reader Reactions

Woman w/surprised look

As a writer, one of the things I enjoy the most (besides reading reviews on my books) is meeting new people, especially readers. I love seeing the look on a reader’s face when they meet me or see me for the first time. I get so tickled when a reader tells me that I do not look like how they had imagined. Never fails. It seems thus far that most readers who have read my stories assume that I am an older African American woman because of how my stories are written and the lingo that I use. I have been told countless times that I have an “old soul” so maybe that is where I get it from. Nevertheless, the looks on people’s faces when they see me are priceless. Some are shocked that I look so young, others are shocked at how little or small I am and then there are those who tell me that I do not have the look of a writer. Go figure. Either way, I love their reactions, all of them because I love seeing the element of surprise on their face. I love being what they did not expect me to be and that my dear friend is not only satisfying, but it is also gratifying. Readers are special because without them writing itself would be a complete waste of time. What is the point of writing a story if there is no one to read it?

As I continue on my journey as a writer, I will do my best to not only establish myself as a writer, but to also keep pumping out entertaining stories for readers to read.  I have a ways to go still, but I am far from giving up. Who knows the future will bring. Until next time folks!