Beyond Black & White » Interviews http://www.beyondblackwhite.com Chronicles, Musings and Debates about Interracial & Intercultural Relationships Fri, 24 Apr 2015 16:52:44 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.3 IRR Romance: My Spartan Hellion by Nadia Aidan http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/irr-romance-spartan-hellion-nadia-aidan/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/irr-romance-spartan-hellion-nadia-aidan/#comments Sat, 15 Nov 2014 01:21:28 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=34660 My Spartan Hellion by Nadia Aidan When a spirited, Carthaginian slave and a noble Spartan general are thrust together, passion flourishes between the unlikely pair. But is passion enough to weather the turmoil of treachery, war and murder brewing in Ancient Sparta?   BB&W: Why did you choose an interracial theme for your novel, My Spartan […]

The post IRR Romance: My Spartan Hellion by Nadia Aidan appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
myspartanhellion_800

My Spartan Hellion

by

Nadia Aidan

When a spirited, Carthaginian slave and a noble Spartan general are thrust together, passion flourishes between the unlikely pair. But is passion enough to weather the turmoil of treachery, war and murder brewing in Ancient Sparta?

novel-girl-post-divider

  BB&W: Why did you choose an interracial theme for your novel, My Spartan Hellion?

NA: The answer to that question isn’t a simple one for me. In recent years American society has become more comfortable with interracial pairings thanks to successful television and film writers, like Shonda Rhimes the creator of Scandal and Kriss Turner, the writer of the breakout film, Something New.
The expansion of interracial relationships in television and film came about at the same time we began to see more fiction works featuring relationships with interracial themes, and I have no doubt this was due in part because of the changing of the times. Before, when most people thought of an interracial relationship it was generally a black man with a white woman, which I think speaks to more open mindsets and changing norms in general, which is great, but for some reason it took much longer for mainstream society to embrace relationships between white men and black women.
So when I began writing in 2007, before we began to see these images of black female/white male relationships on primetime television and in blockbuster movies, I know this particular interracial dynamic was one I really wanted to feature and ultimately explore because it wasn’t very popular at the time, and I didn’t understand why. As a romance writer, I truly believe love is colorblind, or at least it should be, and that’s what I wanted to address in the stories I penned. And as far as why I chose an interracial theme specifically for my book, My Spartan Hellion, is because in the interracial genre, there are very few historical works, even fewer set during the time period of antiquity, and when there are stories with multicultural elements, they are generally set in Ancient Egypt. As a writer, but also an avid reader, I wanted to tell a story that few would ever consider, but one that could have easily existed—the relationship between a Carthaginian woman and a Spartan soldier. With the cross-cultural contact between Carthage and Greece, I would like to think that at some point in history there was a Thanos and Lamia who survived through the harshness that was life during war, to find love.
BB&W: What is your opinion on interracial romance in erotic romance?
NA: I love it and I celebrate it; and not just interracial romance involving black women and white men, but all interracial and multicultural pairings. I love reading stories featuring Asian women and black men, or Latina women and white men, it really doesn’t matter. I enjoy learning about another culture, and relating to different heroines, because in my reading of various IR themed romance stories, I’ve found the challenges interracial couples face, while not the same, they are often similar. As far as interracial romance in erotic romance? The steamier the better! LOL! While my preference has always been erotic romance, at the end of the day, the heat level is really the only distinction. Whether erotic or sweet, interracial romance is just like all other romances— it a story about two people’s journey to finding love, which no matter the race of the characters or the heat rating of the book, I think anyone who has ever been in love can relate to that.
BB&W: What is your opinion on interracial romance in general?
NA: Well since I write about it, then naturally I have a positive opinion. My attitude and perspective regarding interracial romance; however, I know is driven by my own personal life as well. I’ve been involved in serious, long term interracial relationships in the past; and I am currently in an interracial relationship. Although, I acknowledge and recognize that my boyfriend and I are of two different races, we have never allowed race to become an issue in our relationship. That is not to say that race isn’t important or that it doesn’t matter, but we have more immediate issues to deal with in our relationship—like whose turn is it to do the dishes tonight! I joke, but the point I’m trying to make is one I try to make in subtle ways when I create my characters. If you remove the interracial component, at the end of the day, you have just another ordinary man and woman dealing with the same issues as every other couple.

 

Synopsis:

Ripped from her home and forced into slavery, Lamia escapes from one master only to find herself the prisoner of another—handsome Spartan general, Thanos Aristaeus. Lamia vows never to surrender to Thanos, who openly desires her body. Yet, she never imagines he will also threaten to steal her heart.

General Thanos Aristaeus couldn’t have anticipated that his brief trip to Athens would yield him a spirited Carthaginian beauty…who despises his very existence. Lamia defies him at every turn, but Thanos soon learns that lurking beneath the surface of her vehement denials of him is desire—a desire which she fails to disguise and is equally matched by his own passion for her.

Unable to deny the scorching attraction between them, the pair find themselves embroiled in a heated affair, one that is doomed to meet a bitter end when faced with the political turmoil brewing in Ancient Greece.

Torn between their two worlds, Thanos and Lamia must ultimately decide if they are willing to sacrifice everything for a love they never imagined they would find.

Treachery, war and murder—can an unexpected and unlikely love flourish when faced with such obstacles? Lamia and Thanos are about to find out.

 

Excerpt:

The scorching waves of the desert heat crashed down upon her, choking her, and Lamia wiped at the sweat trickling along her brow as the blistering sun battered them mercilessly. They would travel south toward Sparta, the journey taking at least half a fortnight, if they were lucky.

Already her muscles ached and she released a soft groan as she shifted in the saddle, tensing when her buttocks brushed against Thanos.

Relax,” he murmured close to her ear, the deep timbre of his voice washing over her like a gentle breeze. She shivered when his warm breath feathered across the sensitive skin along the side of her neck, coaxing tiny goose bumps from her heated flesh.

I am fine,” she gritted out, but she was far from it. Her backside was sore, her back hurt, and her muscles throbbed with pain from holding herself so rigid.

He chuckled, the husky rumble resonating through her entire body as it seemingly crossed the narrow space between them to enfold her in its intimate warmth.

I do not bite,” he said with laughter in his voice.

Lamia whipped her head around to glare at him. “I said I was fine.”

By the gods, he was handsome when he smiled. The harsh planes of his face softened and his piercing eyes danced with merriment as he stared down at her. Afraid that her eyes would betray her, she twisted her head back around.

He tightened his hold on his reins, enclosing her in his embrace. And when he leaned forward, his chest brushed against her back.

She stifled a moan and her eyelids drifted shut when she felt her body hum to life, her nipples budding so tight the sensation was almost painful as they hardened to stiff peaks. Yesterve, she’d noticed him as a man—his handsomeness, his virility. Yet at the same time she’d been so consumed by her fate that she’d brushed her awareness of him aside.

But ever since earlier that dawn in her tent…his wet physique, the droplets of water that clung to his hair roughened skin. She swallowed at the memory. Thanos was just so blatantly masculine that it was hard not to be affected by him—it was hard to be around him and still pretend that she did not notice, especially when his body was pressed to hers.

Move back and relax against me,” he said firmly, his warm breath fanning the tiny hairs behind her ear.

She shook her head. The last thing she wanted was to have his strong arms wrap any tighter around her, so that with each step of his horse, his solid chest would rub against her back and the insistent press of his cock would nudge the swells of her ass, just as it was doing now—

Do it, Lamia.”

No.”

He dropped the reins, and she gasped when his hand snaked out to splay across her belly, to gently but firmly scoot her back, so that she rested against the hard wall of his body.

Stop that, Spartan,” she snapped, struggling to lean forward, but it was useless. He had trapped her with his large frame.

You are the most stubborn woman I know,” he shot back, his voice strained with exasperation. “Your back will be sore by dusk if you remain so rigid. Relax against me. We have a long journey ahead and you will ache all over before it is done. It is foolish to start off in pain,” he argued.

She silently fumed but said nothing. She hated that he was right. But more than that she hated how the tender folds of her womanhood were now warm and swollen, the slick, wet juices of her blossoming body, now pooling between her thighs. She let out a ragged breath, trying to fight back a moan while her gaze desperately roamed over the expanse of land that lay ahead of them. There was no way she would survive a fortnight with her body pressed against Thanos’ the entire time. She needed to concentrate on plans to escape—and the sooner the better, because her body threatened to ignite into flames with the slightest touch.

It was shameful, it was shocking and it terrified her, the power this Spartan now wielded over her without any effort.

Yes, it was imperative she escape him, and fast, for she could only imagine what would come of her if he were to do more than just touch…

 

About Nadia:

Burk

I am an avid reader, a fitness enthusiast, and I love debating politics. Currently, I live in Las Vegas NV where I work as a full-time professor and write whenever I have the chance. I am a multi-published author of multicultural erotic romance across many genres, from historical, to fantasy, to sci-fi and contemporary. Recently, I’ve been moving more towards penning erotica, but always with multicultural elements, and not surprisingly, I still haven’t strayed far from my romance roots!

Feel free to connect with me at contactme@nadiaaidan.com or visit my website www.nadiaaidan.com

I love hearing from all of you!

 

Available: https://www.totallybound.com/my-spartan-hellion

Author Site: http://www.nadiaaidan.com

The post IRR Romance: My Spartan Hellion by Nadia Aidan appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/irr-romance-spartan-hellion-nadia-aidan/feed/ 8
I Told Tyler Perry I Want to See More HEALTHY Swirl Relationships on the Tom Joyner Show This Morning http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/told-tyler-perry-want-see-healthy-swirl-relationships-tom-joyner-show-morning/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/told-tyler-perry-want-see-healthy-swirl-relationships-tom-joyner-show-morning/#comments Fri, 14 Mar 2014 13:57:00 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=29208 I had the opportunity of a lifetime today to speak my piece to Tyler Perry and get the peanut gallery to admit that colorism plays a MAJOR role in the dating options with black women. Oh, and we talked about my show, “Swirlr” too. During the show, Tyler Perry teased that black men have a […]

The post I Told Tyler Perry I Want to See More HEALTHY Swirl Relationships on the Tom Joyner Show This Morning appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
I had the opportunity of a lifetime today to speak my piece to Tyler Perry and get the peanut gallery to admit that colorism plays a MAJOR role in the dating options with black women. Oh, and we talked about my show, “Swirlr” too. ;-)

During the show, Tyler Perry teased that black men have a problem that white men are taking the finest and best-of-the-best black women. “There are fine looking black women every day being passed up by black men,” says me. The men actually ADMITTED colorism plays a role in black women’s dating options.

You can listen here.

The post I Told Tyler Perry I Want to See More HEALTHY Swirl Relationships on the Tom Joyner Show This Morning appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/told-tyler-perry-want-see-healthy-swirl-relationships-tom-joyner-show-morning/feed/ 229
Check Out My “Swirlr” Interview on CNN/HLN…Now the World Knows…Mwhhahaha! http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/check-swirlr-interview-cnnhln/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/check-swirlr-interview-cnnhln/#comments Sun, 09 Mar 2014 16:18:09 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=29108 I was sick as a dog doing this show, but I managed to keep it together long enough to not look like I was ready to throw up on my shoes. I love the folks over at CNN…they are the only network that’s been so supportive of the notion of our changing demographic, and acknowledging […]

The post Check Out My “Swirlr” Interview on CNN/HLN…Now the World Knows…Mwhhahaha! appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
1911812_10202106999610741_762645392_n

I was sick as a dog doing this show, but I managed to keep it together long enough to not look like I was ready to throw up on my shoes. I love the folks over at CNN…they are the only network that’s been so supportive of the notion of our changing demographic, and acknowledging it in a fun and positive way. Let’s hope the other networks will catch on. In the meantime, enjoy my frog voice. And after sleeping an entire day, I’m way better. Now back to work!

The post Check Out My “Swirlr” Interview on CNN/HLN…Now the World Knows…Mwhhahaha! appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/check-swirlr-interview-cnnhln/feed/ 42
Who Raped Chris Brown? Sexual Assault Has No Gender http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/raped-chris-brown-sexual-assault-gender/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/raped-chris-brown-sexual-assault-gender/#comments Wed, 09 Oct 2013 14:10:51 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=25827 The internet is buzzing about the latest oral slip up coming from Public Enemy Number #1 also known as Chris Brown. Now I’m so sure this isn’t a friendly space for a man such as he, considering his past, his prior inability to man up and take responsibility for his actions, and his enormous mouth […]

The post Who Raped Chris Brown? Sexual Assault Has No Gender appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
The internet is buzzing about the latest oral slip up coming from Public Enemy Number #1 also known as Chris Brown. Now I’m so sure this isn’t a friendly space for a man such as he, considering his past, his prior inability to man up and take responsibility for his actions, and his enormous mouth in foot moments but his latest interview was a gold mine of introspection.

The 24 year old pop superstar recently conducted an interview with the Guardian where he revealed details about his childhood that were both shocking, and unfortunately, all too common among Black and Latino males.

Chris Brown playing hoops for his high school team.

 His mother worked in a daycare facility, his father as a corrections officer in a local prison, and they had one other child, his older sister.

When Brown was two, he began copying Michael Jackson’s dance moves, and was soon singing in his church choir and competing in local talent shows.

His parents divorced when he was seven, and before long he and his sister and mother were living with her new husband in a trailer park, where in the past he has described lying in bed listening to his stepfather beat his mother.

And almost as if he’s any other young Black male that I’ve asked this question of, he further goes on to disclose even more insight into who he would grow to become.

He lost his virginity when he was eight years old, to a local girl who was 14 or 15. Seriously? “Yeah, really. Uh-huh.” He grins and chuckles. “It’s different in the country.” Brown grew up with a great gang of boy cousins, and they watched so much porn that he was raring to go.

“By that point, we were already kind of like hot to trot, you know what I’m saying? Like, girls, we weren’t afraid to talk to them; I wasn’t afraid. So, at eight, being able to do it, it kind of preps you for the long run, so you can be a beast at it. You can be the best at it.”

When asked if he could do it all again, and live his life as a regular teenager and young adult, he responds:

“Honestly, where I’m from, probably not. I think me being able to travel from the small town I was from, me already having a good IQ, and you know being intelligent, and regular stuff, I just had to learn more and more of the street life, you know, how to manoeuvre around a room full of wolves.”

He is finally able to discuss his prior legal matters including his anger management training:

“I think the actual class I went to was a little bit sexist.” What does he mean? “It was beneficial because it made me cater more to a woman’s thoughts and a woman’s needs, and how to handle situations. But the class itself, no disrespect to the class, but the class itself only tells you you’re wrong, you’re wrong, you’re wrong.”

These few excerpts are merely a sample of what many young males have to endure. The ways in which they are sexual exploitation and exposed to violence differ from the ways females become indoctrinated into intimacy abuse.

You can’t begin to find a solution to the problems that plagues women regarding sexual assault and abuse until we take a good hard look at the sexual abuse of their abusers, namly, the males.

I was not surprised to see that his father is a correctional office, law enforcement employees are notorious for being abusive and dysfunctional, though I won’t accuse his natural father of being violent, I will say the behavior of those that work with society’s cast offs are damaged by association. I’ve yet to see a soft spoken, polite and behaviorally healthy officer of the law. This isn’t up for debate from the police apologists.

Chris Brown with his father Clinton Brown after a show in Portsmouth, Va., in 2007.

The sexual abuse and exploitation of CHILDREN is an everyday occurrence though we spend much more time focusing on systematic instances of child sex abuse rather than those that occur right under our nose.

Rihanna might want to know who raped Chris Brown, because the 14 or 15 year old girl that tampered with this boys understanding of his selfhood contributed to the demon that would eat up the young man that he was to become.

Chris’ step father, Danielle Hawkins, denies that any physical abuse ever took place, however, he is also blind due to a self inflicted gun shot wound that happened during an altercation with CB’s mother. You can stand and deny truth to the beating allegations until the sun rises, at some point, you have to just call BS and go with the evidence. I’m wondering how a non-violent man, or an emotionally/mentally sound man ends up with a gun drawn to his own skull during an argument with his spouse.

Meanwhile, as we deny the problems at hand, someone might wanna call 911…because a child was raped.

I don’t care who thinks it’s an appropriate induction for males, I don’t care how many damaged males he had supporting his demise, I just don’t care.

This story is similar to dozens of other stories told by me by young black men who were forced into sexual play with an adult under the forceful eyes of a DBR male relative.

This is the same story as those males who are shown porn and who must listen to the DBR male’s objective and damaging dialogue regarding black women, and women in general. They are quick to have audio and video supporting their aghast at women; they codify and make abuse a right of passage for other males.

This is the same story as those males who told me of how they were instigated, touched, forced and bullied into sexual situations by other males that they did not want to be a part of.

This is the same story as those males who told me of inappropriate rough house play that occurred at the hands of generous family members, clergy members, coaches and neighbors. They told me of the strange conflict in knowing they are male, dominant and suddenly made aware of their weakness that follows the theft of one’s innocence.

What I care about is the person who abused the teen girl so that she would go on to become a child sex abuser. I care about the environment in which young black kids must grow up in and nonsense like this isn’t acceptable. Even if the family is married and comes included with a white picket fence.

I care about sounding off and calling this disgusting display of lack of morals, empathy and uncivilized behavior what it is. Our children are abused. We, the parents, create the situations that allow our children to be abused. We, the family’s of these children, turn our head, accept the treatment and continue to insist that they will go on to be ‘okay’ when it’s apparent that abuse is the gift that keeps on giving.

If I was Rihanna….. I would be looking for that 14 year old girl. I would want to know ‘who did it’ to find out who stripped her of her person hood and did she take C Breezy’s innocence hoping to replace her own?

 

When I hear stories like these, I call a spade a spade. A boy child was raped, and he grew up into a confused, aggressive and angry young man.

Is he without blame? Of course not!

But we can’t feed the dog raw meat and beat him and then act surprised when he attacks. His phrase about anger management being sexist is slightly true, we raise our males in a slim corridor of emotional existence, they can only be sexually aggressive or violent or both. No where is there room for males to be seen as whole humans who can experience abuse and who deserve protection and nurturing.

Where does it end….?

Where does it begin…?

Victims become victimizers. That’s a fact.

These questions need answers.

Will we continue to be silent….

My name is Tracy Renee Jones….and sexual assault knows no gender.

The post Who Raped Chris Brown? Sexual Assault Has No Gender appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/raped-chris-brown-sexual-assault-gender/feed/ 26
Today’s the Day! Matthew Hussey’s “Ready for Love” and New Book, “Get The Guy”!! http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/todays-day-matthew-husseys-ready-love-book-get-guy/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/todays-day-matthew-husseys-ready-love-book-get-guy/#comments Tue, 09 Apr 2013 17:25:01 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=20532 A book and a show, all in the same day...

The post Today’s the Day! Matthew Hussey’s “Ready for Love” and New Book, “Get The Guy”!! appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
My friend is a star!!! I can’t say I’m surprised. Did you see this hunk of gorgeousness on the Today show? No? Well, good for you I have it right here.

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Oh! And “Get the Guy” is available for sale TODAY!!

GTG book

 

But Matthew hasn’t gotten so famous that he’s forgotten about us over here at BB&W. I just talked to him this morning, so take a listen to what he has to say. There’s a special offer for the BB&W single ladies who buy his book today. Send the receipt via email to christelyn@beyondblackwhite.com and you get a FREE ticket to one of his live “Get the Guy” events. Tell him you’re from BB&W and he’ll even give you a hug. ;-)

Event Dates:

Screen shot 2013-04-09 at 10.20.23 AM

For more information on events, click here.

Books are on sale now in bookstores, but you can order online at Barnes and Noble and Amazon.

Don’t forget to turn into the show tonight (it airs after “The Voice”) and let me know what you think!

The post Today’s the Day! Matthew Hussey’s “Ready for Love” and New Book, “Get The Guy”!! appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/todays-day-matthew-husseys-ready-love-book-get-guy/feed/ 20
Interview with Writer and Former Madame Noire Editor, Demetria Irwin http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/interview-writer-demetria-irwin/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/interview-writer-demetria-irwin/#comments Wed, 28 Nov 2012 20:38:34 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=14372 On location at the film screening and panel discussion of "The Souls of Black Girls", BB&W had the opportunity to speak with Panel member, the lovely Demetria Irwin, former Managing Editor of MadameNoire.com and mentor at Girls Write Now. We discussed role models, media images, family, and of course, writing. Its time for black women to start telling our own stories and defining our sexuality. Ms. Irwin is definitely one of the leaders to take up that great task!

The post Interview with Writer and Former Madame Noire Editor, Demetria Irwin appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
On location at the film screening and panel discussion of “The Souls of Black Girls”, BB&W had the opportunity to speak with Panel member, the lovely Demetria Irwin, former Managing Editor of MadameNoire.com and mentor at Girls Write Now.  We discussed role models, media images, family, and of course, writing.  Its time for black women to start telling our own stories and defining our sexuality.  Ms. Irwin is definitely one of the leaders to take up that great task!

ED:  Did you have a role model or mentor in your life that challenged you or led to your writing?

DI:  I wouldn’t say a mentor encouraged me to go into writing.  I was making the transition from working as an urban planner and writing on the side.  It was just myself.  I was working crazy hours and I enjoyed writing.  I was like at some point, I need to take a leap of faith and really try to do this.  I don’t want to be 50 years old and be like I never even tried to write a novel.  I could have been Toni Morrison or something.  I had a very supportive partner at the time.  So, I quit my job, started freelancing, cold-pitched people, and was picked up by people I was freelancing for two months.  I took a staff job and gained a lot of experience, and made contacts that I still use today.    One of those people actually turned out to be a cousin, just find that out.  So, you never know how things happen for a reason.  That whole saying is true.

ED:  Back to finding your cousin.  I read that you were a genealogy junkee. Where does that stem from?

DI:  That’s how I found him.  I was all up and through ancestry.com and I found living relatives from all around the country.  So when I moved here 8 years ago, I didn’t have any family here.  It was just my cat, and me I thought.  But with genealogy, I actually have about 30 relatives in this area.  I’m actually going to spend Thanksgiving with them this week. And I met a lot of this earlier this year at the Fourth of July.   So it’s super exciting.

ED:  What has been your experience as a black female writer?  Females already have a glass ceiling in journalism, have you met any challenges?

DI:  Probably just as a female writer in general.  People not taking you seriously, especially if you do entertainment, my goodness.  They may assume that you landed an interview because so and so likes you or because the interviewee is being a little extra because that is what he expects:  groupie chicks.  But as a black female writer, just trying to be very conscious of the image you put out there.  That’s kind of one of the reasons I like being a freelancer now.  Because I can work for a lot of different places and not feel completely caged in by a particular brand or a particular advertiser.  If I don’t want to write about something, I can find someone else or write on my own blog, but I’m very, very conscious.  I’m conscious about putting things out there that I won’t be embarrassed by.  I have 11 nieces and nephews and I want to write things they would not be embarrassed reading.

ED:  I’ve heard of this new idea of bringing black boys into dialogue about engaging black feminism and encouraging them to treat black females in a positive manner.  Do you know about that or any programs?

DI:  I don’t know of anything formal, but I do feel that it is incredibly important.  Because if these little black boys are being indoctrinated into this exotic or white women only idea, that becomes their standard of beauty.  I had a friend say at a party once, “I’m gonna take a white girl home tonight.”  I think he forgets sometimes that I’m a woman.  But he thought I couldn’t say nothing.  No.  I’ve dated everyone in and under the rainbow, but that is not my standard of beauty.  I’m not going to go to a party and say, “I’m going to take a white boy home tonight.”

ED:  So you know, BB&W is an interracial, intercultural dating blog.  What do you think about teaching young females of color that they have that option would create a more positive image of themselves in their minds?

DI:  I think that is a mentality that goes both ways.  Where a lot of black women feel if a white man does approach them, it’s a jungle fever type motive and they’re not comfortable with that.  And the white man is not approaching them because he thinks he doesn’t have swag and that’s what they know about black women. Black women love swag.  They want they broad-shouldered, knucklehead, two chains mentality.  And both of them are really confused. So it ends up with nobody talking to each other and they might have 10,000 things in common.  Race doesn’t happen to be one of them, but they never know because they never make that initial point of contact.  It really falls on both sides to open your mind.

ED:  How would you encourage mothers or black females to mentor young black children to pursue their dreams in the Michelle Obama generation?

DI:  You know I have 11 nieces and nephews and I have an 18-year-old mentee.  So I have a lot of young people in my life.  And a lot of times kids will tell the non-parent adults in their life, things they are not telling their parents.  Sometimes serious stuff.  Sometimes not so serious stuff.  But one thing I have learned is not to be the secret keeper.  If something is major, you need to let the parent know.

But for some of my other cousins and nieces, who see these positive images like Michelle Obama, there is a huge disconnect for them because that is what they do not know.  Because they grew up in the same type of neighborhoods that I grew up in.  So its just, you know, the mom who has the 3 or 4 kids by 3 or 4 different people and is just getting by.  Like they just don’t understand that.  They feel like  people like Michelle Obama, although they know she exist, like they don’t exist. Like there is something special about that.  So I always try to impart to them, that literally I grew up 5 minutes from where some of my nieces and nephew grew up.  “I know where you’ve been, son.  I know where you’re at.  There is nothing special about me in that sense.  I know the same thugs, hoodrats, prostitutes, like all the same characters you have in your life, I’ve had in mine.  But nothing was given to me in that way.  I just took a different path and you can too.  Yes, you’re special in your own way, but its not like magic.  But you can do this.  You know, its not unattainable.

ED:  What is something that you know now that you wish you could tell yourself back then?  If you could go back, what would you tell your younger self?

DI:  Not to be so concerned about the opinions of my peers.  It’s really almost impossible to admit to that.  You know a lot of these experiences that these women discuss  in the film, I didn’t experience that.  I never experienced colorism because I was just brown.  I was always a beanpole.  I always had long hair.  I had different body issues.  I had a friend who had like “the body” since she was 10.  Here I am this beanpole (those were my issues) and I want that!  I was always concerned with what some boy said or what so and so said about my shoes.  But its like in 10 years, I’m not even going to know these people once we graduate.  They will have zero impact on my life at all.  And to let people like that influence you for years (‘cause that stuff sticks with you) when people say things, when you’re at a vulnerable 12 to 13 year old age.  I ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and everybody’s grandma’s red beans and rice, steak and potatoes trying to gain weight.  I could have had a heart attack with all that cholesterol.  So I wish I had known then:  Don’t worry about it.  Be you.  Be smart.  These people might be applying for a job from you by the time you’re grown ups.  I wish I had known that.

Thank you for taking a moment to speak with us Demetria!  It was a pleasure meeting you.

Please check out Demetria’s upcoming projects at cocoafab.com and BlackEnterprise.com.  You can also follow her on twitter @Love_Is_Dope.

The post Interview with Writer and Former Madame Noire Editor, Demetria Irwin appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

]]>
http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/interview-writer-demetria-irwin/feed/ 1