Fire & Ink Presents!

DC Pride 2008

Art and culture, our stories and our fantasies, are a crucial part of our lives. Fire & Ink is excited to continue in its mission to strengthen and nourish our creative community by rolling out Fire & Ink Presents! — a new initiative through which we are curating literary events at Black Pride Celebrations around the country.

Memorial Day Weekend 2008 brings the first in the Fire & Ink Presents! series, and we are starting it off on a high note. This year, in honor of the 18th Anniversary of D.C. Black Pride, Fire & Ink launches this exciting new program with a roster that will leave you jumping up and down and screaming for more.

Fire & Ink Presents!
2-4 p.m. Saturday, May 24, 2008
Renaissance M St. Hotel, Potomac Room, Lower Level

Come share this afternoon with us, and hear 10 exciting authors read from their latest books:

Save the Date for upcoming Fire & Ink Presents! events coming to a city near you:

June 12th: Newark/Essex Pride (featuring: James Earl Hardy, Jonathan Plummer, Kimberly Q, Sharon Bridgforth)

June 12th: Portland, Oregon

June 25-29: Columbia, S.C.

Dates soon to be announced for Fire & Ink Presents! events in Memphis & Nashville.


The Highest Price of PassionLaurinda D. Brown uses her writing to tell universal stories that apply to all cross-sections of society. She is the author of six novels, Fire & Brimstone, UnderCover, Walk Like a Man, Strapped, The Cathouse, and The Highest Price for Passion, and a contributing author to Zane’s Purple Panties. In 2007, Laurinda won the Lambda Literary Award for Best Lesbian Erotica with her book of short stories, Walk Like a Man, which became a critically acclaimed stage play now in its third year of production. A graduate of Howard University, she writes about life, not lifestyles. She currently resides in the Atlanta metro area with her two daughters and her partner of twelve years, Charlotte.

The Highest Price for Passion: A century of unrest equals ten decades of change. The Highest Price for Passion uses as background one hundred years of the most volatile era to divide American soil, interspersed with the uncontrollable fervor from the unlikeliest of sources—when both master and mistress vie for the affections of a slave too beautiful to destroy, with a quiet intelligence neither can outwit.

HouseIsNotaHome.jpgJames Earl Hardy’s byline as a music critic, cultural writer and essayist has appeared in Essence, Newsweek, Entertainment Weekly, the Washington Post, Out, the Advocate, and Source. An honors graduate of the Columbia School of Journalism, Hardy has been honored by the American Association of Sunday and Feature Editors and is the recipient of the E.Y. Harburg Foundation Arts Award, the Educational Press Association Award, and the Public Service Award from Gay Men of African Descent (GMAD). Born and raised in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood, Hardy now lives in Atlanta, Ga.

A House Is Not a Home: In the sixth and final title of his groundbreaking, bestselling B-Boy Blues series, James Earl Hardy brings his beloved couple—Mitchell, the Buppie from Brooklyn, and Raheim, the homeboy from Harlem—into the twenty-first century. As they prepare for the birthday party of Raheim’s fifteen-year-old son, Errol (formerly known as “Junior” and “Li’l Brother Man”), Mitchell and Raheim both juggle their own midlife crises and consider once-in-a-lifetime opportunities

ColdRunningCreek4web.jpgZelda Lockhart is author of the novel Fifth Born, which was a 2002 Barnes & Noble Discovery selection and won a finalist award for debut fiction from the Zora Neale Hurston/Richard Wright Legacy Foundation. Lockhart holds a bachelor’s degree from Norfolk State University, a master’s in English from Old Dominion University, and a certificate in writing, directing and editing film from the New York Film Academy. Her other works of fiction, poetry and essays can be found in anthologies, journals and magazines. Lockhart’s recent novel, Cold Running Creek (LaVenson Press, 2007), is a work of historical fiction that has already garnered the attention of noteworthy literary organizations, such as the Historical Novel Society, and has won a 2008 Honor Fiction Award from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. She is currently working on her third novel, and facilitating a variety of workshops that empower adults and children to self-define through writing. She lives in Hillsborough, North Carolina, and welcomes visits to her web site,

Cold Running Creek: During one of the most tumultuous times for the North American continent (pre and post Civil War) three generations of women both Native American and African American, struggle to be free. Cold Running Creek is enlightening in its untold historical truths, and relevant to all time with its soul-stirring revelations. With a chorus of swamps, voodoo, floods, creeks and rivers, Cold Running Creek is rich, passionate, and leaves the reader breathless.

TheDayIStoppedBeingPretty.jpgRodney Lofton is the author of The Day I Stopped Being Pretty. Lofton has been a voice and face for those living with HIV for the past ten years. He has served as a keynote speaker and requested facilitator by the New Jersey World AIDS Day Celebration, the U.S. Conference on AIDS, and many other events. He has presented on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues at the National Gay & Lesbian Taskforce Conference Creating Change and the Gay & Lesbian Medical Association Conference. Lofton is a former freelance writer with SPICE Magazine, Music Biz and the African-American gay publication The Malebox. Lofton is also a former public relations professional, having represented the likes of Kool and the Gang, Mary Wilson of the legendary Supremes, dancehall reggae artist Shabba Ranks and the R&B recording group RIFF. Lofton is currently a columnist for GBMNews, which focuses on issues related to the African-American gay community. He resides in Virginia.

Rodney Lofton felt he was living “under society’s label of being ‘dirty or unclean’” since being diagnosed with HIV. But after he woke from a failed suicide attempt, Lofton set out on a journey to overcome the adversity of racism, homophobia, rape and more to find love, not just from others, but also within himself. The Day I Stopped Being Pretty provides an insightful, inspiring perspective into the lives of those living with HIV and AIDS. It brings a face to the epidemic and shows the power of love, sorrow, and hope. It is a story of living gay, loving positively, and finding the inner strength to reach out to others despite their rejection and scorn.

Unspeakable.jpgThis year, Michael-Christopher celebrates ten years of self-publishing success. Since 1998, Michael has written, illustrated and published a graphic novel compilation and three literary novels, including the Living the Life series and the critically acclaimed From Top to Bottom. A graduate of New York’s School of Visual Arts, Michael plans forthcoming collections of photography and sketches and the seventh installation in his graphic novel series. Unspeakable is Michael-Christopher’s fourth novel.

In Unspeakable, Rodney Franklin seeks the comfort of family and friends in his hometown of Philadelphia following a breakup with his partner. While reconnecting with his past, Rodney discovers he and a childhood friend both share a disturbing experience—they were both victims of child molestation at the hands of the same depraved man. In their attempt to right the wrongs of the past, Rodney and his friends find themselves in very present trouble. Amidst it all, Rodney’s old flame, Katrina, enters the picture in hopes of resuming her role as damsel in distress, but this time around, she finds Rodney is not the man she once knew.

InternalChaos4web.jpgNovelist M.W. Moore, the NCAA track-and-field champion who captured the conscience of readers with For What I Hate I Do, autobiographical fiction about falling star Miguel Morris, shines again with the upcoming release of Internal Chaos. Internal Chaos chronicles Miguel Morris’ transition to prison after being arrested for six bank robberies. Moore is a sought-after speaker who eloquently and courageously tells about the dark side of addiction and its consequences. Moore attended Mississippi State University and West Texas State University. He is a native of Houston, Texas, where he still resides.

Internal Chaos: Rather than endure a lengthy court battle that could negatively impact his family, former NCAA track champion and crack addict Miguel Morris accepts a plea deal from the FBI for robbing six banks in Houston, Texas. However, Miguel still suffers from sexual addiction, which further threatens his safety and scant hopes in prison. After being caught having sex in another inmate’s cell, Miguel learns the consequences of deception and snitching, lessons he learns from an unlikely source: his flamboyant cellmate.

OrchidsII.jpgKimberly Q aka the Lesbian Goddess is a self-published author, actress, singer and 3-time AUDELCO award winner. She has had two of her plays produced by various production companies in various cities; “J’ai Deux Amours…A Journey with Josephine Baker,” (winner of the Best Lead Actress award from AUDELCO) and “The “Q” Stands for Queer.”

Her two books, Orchids: African American Lesbian Erotica One Night Stands and Orchids II: Reality or Fantasy, are erotic episodes presented to entice, entertain and broaden the thoughts, actions and creativity of the lesbian sexual experience. Her motto: Luxuriate in the positive stimulus of your sensuousness! It will enhance your ultimate fantasies!

Dorothy Randall GrayDorothy Randall Gray is author of the bestseller, Soul Between The Lines: Freeing Your Creative Spirit Through Writing (Avon/ HarperCollins), and six other books of poetry, fiction and nonfiction. She has been featured on radio and television, at museums, universities and cultural institutions. Her internationally acclaimed personal development, creative writing and spiritual empowerment seminars have inspired thousands throughout the U.S. and abroad. Dorothy was formerly a New York University faculty member, Poet-in-Residence at Hunter College, and NPR commentator for the Tavis Smiley Show. For over 16 years Dorothy has taught writing and served as creative consultant to numerous writers. She is also a certified life coach and global activist who has shared the dais with the Dalai Lama and boogied with James Baldwin.

Tamarinda: Embedded in ancestral traditions, southern roots and African spirituality, Tamarinda is novel of love, lust, betrayal and belief, a coming of age story about nine-year-old Tamarinda, who is sent to live with her grandparents in a small Georgia town after witnessing the death of her mother at the hands of her father.

JustLikeaGirl.jpgMichelle Sewell is an award-winning screenwriter, poet and founder of GirlChild Press. Throughout her work as a poet and a social worker, she has maintained that there must be a place for women and girls to develop and express their truest selves. With that in mind she has created open mics, workshops, and writing circles to foster that “sacred space” environment for women. The Jamaican-born artist/activist work has appeared on NPR, in Sinister Wisdom, Voices Rising, Campaign to End AIDS Anthology, Port of Harlem Magazine, and Sewell is a 2007 OutFest Screenwriting Fellow. Just Like a Girl is the follow-up anthology to Sewell’s acclaimed Growing Up Girl.

Just Like a Girl is a rough and tumble, sassy, kick-ass travelogue through the bumpy, powerful, action-packed world of GIRL: a world where girls and women know how to pick themselves up and brush themselves off. These are the clever girls. The funny girls. The girls who know there is no sin in being born one. “These women show the world what writing like a girl looks like, and how doing so just might save the world,” says writer Samiya Bashir.

SilkElectric4web.jpgDarius Omar Williams is a black same-gender-loving poet, playwright, actor and director. His play “Chocolate Cocoa On A Winter Night Part 1: Akel Dama” was produced as a featured staged reading at Boston’s Theater Offensive during its 15th Annual Out on the Edge Theatre Festival; his directing credits include “Dark as a Thousand Nights” (Boston’s Annual African American Theatre Festival); “Ain’t Misbehavin’” (Turtle Lane Playhouse); “Robert Johnson: Trick the Devil” (Jackson State University); and “Ladies in Waiting,” “A Raisin in the Sun,” “The Old Settler” and “The Wiz” (Tougaloo College). Williams received a master of arts in theatre from Bowling Green State University and a master of fine arts in creative writing from Antioch University Los Angeles; he is a Ph.D. candidate in theatre at Ohio State University. His poetry has been featured in The Encore Journal and ARISE magazine.

Available summer 2008, Silk Electric is a moving collection of poems exploring the conflict between spiritual, sexual and sacred spaces, while also juxtaposing the life of Diana Ross with black gay culture. Here is a new southern poet from Mississippi who exposes his soul through a candid, vulnerable account of his same gender loving self. Silk Electric searches for love in its most ideal form, but also reflects on love lessons from the past. Darius simultaneously takes you to church, the bedroom, the club, the bathhouse and the street corner all in one collection. Finally, Silk Electric is a celebration of the music of Diana Ross, a salute to civil rights activists including Medgar Evers, Beah Richards and Ossie Davis as well as a tribute to biological mamas, spiritual mamas and infamous drag-queens.

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