Off To a Good Start

The Chronicles of Neffie has been released for two days and the reviews are coming in on Goodreads. Goodreads ratings hold a lot of weight in the literary world! I’m currently sitting at a 4.2 out of 5 stars so far. Let’s see if I can get to a 4.5 out of 5 stars!

There is something about seeing how other readers rate your work. I love it when readers leave a review. Whether it’s a comment or just a rating, I want to see them! Keep them coming!

Have you ordered your ebook or paperback copy on iTunes, Amazon, Kobo, Playster, Scribd, Smashwords or 24 Symbols? I would love to see what are your thoughts.

For you writers out there, keep writing. Your story deserves to be told and read!

Until next time…

Readers Request 

One of the things I enjoy about my blog is using it as a platform to educate, entertain and promote my written works. It keeps my blog interesting and because of that, readers often come back for more. I had some readers outside of the United States inquire about the horrors of slavery. They read about it, but never seen any pictures.

Well, I found some and the images below are not for the faint of heart. DO NOT scroll down if you can’t handle it. You have been warned…

Branding: Branding was used by slave owners to mark their slaves in the event they tried to runaway or if another slave owner tried to steal them. It was a painful practice because it involved heating the iron brand and pressing it deep into a slave’s flesh until it left a deep burning mark. Most slaves had to be held down because of the excruciating pain.

Whips: Whips were used to punish and scare slaves. A variety of whips were made out of different materials, the most horrific one of all was the steel wire whip because it would cut chunks of flesh away each time it was struck against a slave’s back.

Torture: Many slaves were tortured in the most inhumane ways. Some died, but most lived. The slaves who survived were left with the most barbaric scars and unimaginable pain. These are the toughest to look at…

These are the “soft” images of slavery because I didn’t want to post anything too graphic. Think these are bad? You haven’t seen NOTHING! When someone says that I should forget about slavery, that is like telling me to forget about my ancestors  and what they went through. If you can sit around and talk about your family and your history, why can’t I talk about mine?

Until next time… 

It’s Complicated 

Good Evening wonderful people! I sincerely hope that each of you are doing well. I’ve been tied up quite a bit with my first novel series The Chronicles of Neffie, but in between that time I’m still able to answer some of your questions.

When I posted about doing an ancestry test to find out what all my African ancestry consists of, a few of you had some questions about a statement I made. I had stated that I didn’t want to be 60% or less Sub-Saharan African because if it turns out that I am, I would be devastated. I want to be at least 80% or more. With me saying that, I was asked if I would be upset if I were to find that I have White ancestry. Good question. My answer to that is twofold.

Here’s the thing: White ancestry is going to be a given in most Black people living in America. For many such as myself, having that bit of ancestry is a little disturbing and heartbreaking. Why? Because as Black people, we know the sad circumstances into which it got there – – > slavery and rape. No need in me sugar coating it. It’s the truth. No need to lie. Some truths hurt…

As far as being upset by any White ancestry, I won’t be upset per se, but I will be a little annoyed by it. If you aren’t Black, then you won’t be able to relate to how I and the majority of Black people feel in regards to this. Even with me saying that, that doesn’t mean I hate Europeans / White people. If you are a good person regardless of your race and care for your fellow man, then you are good in my book. 

Until next time… 

James Marion Sims

James Marion Sims is credited as the “father of gynecology.” He developed a number of techniques that helped advance the field of gynecology and wellness in women. He’s praised for a lot of things in the field of medicine, but there’s a dark cloud that lingers over his accomplishments. Why? Continue reading and I’ll tell you below.

James Marion Sims used enslaved Black women to experiment his techniques on. He performed drastic surgeries and other medical procedures on these enslaved Black women without the use of some form of anesthesia or pain medicine. Why did he do this? Because he believed that Black women didn’t experience pain. Not only that, he believed that Black women didn’t have any feelings at all. Lord have mercy…

Nevermind the cries of these enslaved Black women during his surgeries, nevermind the countless number of infections they inherited from his procedures. Not only that, many were also left maimed and severely deformed. Can you guess how many of these enslaved Black women died as he made his advancements in the field of gynecology? Let me just say this, its A LOT!

Now I’ll acknowledge that he did help to advance the field of gynecology, but I won’t turn a blind eye on how he went about doing it. To those who love to refer to him as the “father of gynecology”, don’t forget the thousands of enslaved Black women who had to pay a terrible price for him to be dubbed that.

Until next time…

Juneteenth 

Good Morning! Happy Morning! I know I’m a little late on this, but I’m still going to post my thoughts on Juneteenth. If you’ve never heard of Juneteenth prepare to be “schooled.”
  
Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration commemorating the ending of slavery in the United States.  On June 19, 1865 Union soldiers led by Major General Gordon Granger came to Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and that all slaves were now free. Keep in mind that this “news” came 2 1/2 years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863. 

You may be wondering why it took so long for slavery to end in Texas. Well, considering the history of slavery it doesn’t come as a surprise why, although there has been a number of speculations. For example, one speculation is that the news was deliberately withheld by slave owners to keep slaves on their plantations. Another speculation is that these soldiers / troops waited two years so the slave owners could reap the benefits of their last cotton harvest! How deceitful, hurtful and disgusting! 

Think about that for a moment. You had thousands upon thousands of free Black men, women and children working as slaves because they didn’t know they were actually FREE! It breaks my heart and fires up my soul in more ways than one! Yet, we all know how even though slavery had ended, millions of Black people in the United States were being treated as if they were still slaves. Many were beaten, bullied, lynched and murdered. 

My heart sinks when I think about all the Black women who were raped during slavery and suffered more rape after slavery was over because there was a long standing law that a Black woman could not be raped. The law for the longest time was that a White woman could be raped, but the rape of a Black woman was not rape because of the color of her skin. How sad, yet bitterly true. Makes you wonder how such foolishness like that took place for so long. 

Yes, Juneteenth is celebrated and recognized in some states, but it still doesn’t make up for all the families torn apart and how millions were stripped from their culture. Slavery in any shape or form destroys lives and countless families. 

Until next time… 

Descendant 

Good morning and Happy Friday folks! Pat yourself on the back for making it to Friday. Five o’clock will be here before you know it so just keep that in mind. I penned another poem last night and I am posting it below. I love to write poems about my family and so last night I penned one about my ancestors. Enjoy!!!

Until next time…

The Heartbreaking Truth About Slavery 

​The history of slavery is a very touchy subject for most Americans living here in the United States. It is also a very sore subject for most African Americans to discuss. We have all learned and heard of the unspeakable horrors that took place during slavery. It is enough to make anyone hurt and upset regardless of your skin color. If you ever seen a photo of a slave ship and how African slaves were bound and chained, it most likely broke your heart. No doubt the voyage was long and painful. Many of us would not be able to survive anything remotely close to what those slaves went through. It is mind boggling to think of all the African slaves that did survive such a difficult and inhumane voyage. 

Imagine yourself on that slave ship bound so tightly that you could not move or even go to the rest room. Eating a proper meal was out of the question. Most slaves were fed once a day and you know what that meal consisted of? Slops and scraps. Yes, these slaves were fed like they were pigs or animals. As far as a bath, that generally involved being doused with a bucket of cold sea water. Those who had deep wounds from the slave chains cutting into their skin no doubt felt the stinging pain from the salt in the sea water. 

The slaves who finally made it onto land were quickly sold and auctioned off. The slaves who did not survive the voyage were unchained and tossed into the sea en route. How sad. Husbands, wives, children, sisters and brothers were often torn apart at these slave auctions. Never mind their pleading and begging. Their cries fell on deaf ears. 

The beatings and mistreatment these slaves endured was unspeakable to say the least. Many were branded, had limbs broken or cut off, some of the men were castrated and we know what was largely done to the young women and girls. Beatings and whippings were the norm in slavery because that is what was used to punish and maim slaves. 

I cannot help but to wonder how slaves were often punished for “being lazy” when the United States was largely built on the back of slaves. As they worked themselves to the bone, millions of others reaped the financial benefits of their hard work. Their descendants are still reaping in some cases. What did these slaves get in return? A wooden shack, a broke down back and a life filled with poverty, injustice and pain. It does not take a rocket scientist to tell you who got the short end of the deal. 

Until next time…