Nicki Minaj: Hip Pop Moments 4 Life – Isoul Harris

I didn’t write this up yesterday, even though the book went on sale via Amazon on 4/1 simply to avoid the mistake of it potentially being an April Fools Joke but Nicki Minaj is just that type of hustler. Of course she has a book out but thankfully it’s written by the UPTOWN Magazine Editor -In-Chief Isoul Harris. Harris’ unique way of telling stories just might make this an interesting book that does well on the NY Times List but I still feel over saturated by Nicki Minaj as I have been since before Pink Friday even came out. 

Question is, do you want to read the life story that she’s already told us about in multiple specials, interviews and songs? If so, head over to Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com to purchase her latest effort. 

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The Rise of the Knock Off Book.

The Rise of the Knock Off is relatively new to me, at least I haven’t noticed it reading older books as much as I notice it now. The Knock Off Books is quite literally when someone else takes most of the details of the plot, character archetype and how the plot develops and rehashes it with minor differences. It’s almost like Fan Fiction in the sense that you love the “characters” and don’t want to make too many changes to them but you want your own story, the ending that you like better or worse for them. 

The book series that’s spawned the most knock offs that came across my notice was 50 Shades of Grey. Fifty Shades of Grey started to take the world by storm a few years ago. By the end of 2011 going into 2012 it was all that was talked about from hushed whispers at work to those who would turn the pages quickly with embarrassment and a red tinge on their cheeks in public. It was everywhere and for those who hadn’t really explored the realm of erotic books, this was a huge discovery. 

50 Shades of Grey was a poor attempt at watering down BDSM for the masses, the damaged Characters, the intense sex scenes and the over all obsessive nature of the book appealed to the demographic it was trying to reach and beyond. E.L. James, a British Author struggled through writing a book in America and America ate it up. 

In the search for good BDSM themed writing I’ve stumbled on a few authors who have pretty much re-written the same exact book, except this is the way they would have done it. 

Sylvia Day’s CrossFire Series, Maya Bank’s Breathless Trilogy and you can view a list of similar books via this Good Reads list: http://www.goodreads.com/list/show/21208.Like_50_Shades_of_Grey which isn’t the only 50 Shades of Grey inspired listing on the site. 

I guess, I’m not sure how I’m supposed to feel about knock off books. As a reader, it feels like I’m getting robbed somehow. I’m reading the same stories over and over again, with sinister plot twists and what people think is kinky sex. It’s terrifying for me. 

This ties in to how easy it is to write, to self publish and to call yourself an author these days. I’m not sure what would make someone write a book so blatantly like someone else’s. I also get upset when an author re-uses the same name over and over again in their work. Why would you do that? There are millions of name options, please, I want to read something different, I want to be able to say ” This is different, it’s unlike anything else”. 

I know that in this time of technology, where everyone has the ability to share their thoughts; it seems that all of the same ideas have been done. I get that. It’s hard to write an original plot, it’s difficult to weave a story that allows anyone that reads it to take something important away from it. I get that but don’t become a clone. 

I also see the remake of movies, t.v. shows and programs from across the world in America. I dislike it. I want to see the original, read the original, view the original. I want to experience something new. I don’t want to reread what you think 50 Shades of Grey should have been. I don’t want to see the American Version of anything. Why not give people the credit they deserve. Is it also so difficult that we know that we, as Americans aren’t the best at everything? Show us the names, faces, dates and times of those who did something great.

Do you read knock off books? Do you like them better? Why? What was the first knock off book you read?

Chinua Achebe

My love affair with Chinua Achebe started young, as an avid reader, encouraged by my grandfather, my appetite for books was insatiable. After reading A Tale of Two Cities, my grandfather decided that I should read Things Fall Apart.

I was slightly skeptical about the hype but I delved into it after learning more about him as a person. He was African.

When I finished the book, I realize that it had changed my life. I know that’s a heavy thing for a 13 year old but I was astounded. I couldn’t believe it. It was more amazing than I could have understood at the time but then, I read it again. Slowly the second time around, sounding out the words in my head and letting it sink in.

I was elated that someone African who looked like me, who wasn’t from the UK or the US wrote something so powerful and so enchanting. It was in the afterglow of my thoughts for Things Fall Apart that I begun to play with the idea of trying to make writing something a part of my life.

I was inspired enough to think that my voice mattered, that it may make a difference and more importantly that all stories need to be told.

While Things Fall Apart was my first high, each subsequent book or essay or short story delivered. He was consistent and he was a prophet. He knew that we needed guidance, that we needed to believe in ourselves and our future but it didn’t mean that you had to forget the past.

He died a legendary Writer, Professor, Poet and Critic. He’s inspired me and many others I’m sure to follow their dreams, tell their stories, preserve their integrity and walk with dignity. I’m am happy to strive to be more like he was.

In his words:

“People create stories create people; or rather stories create people create stories.”

Characters You Wish Would Die

Along with characters that carry the show, there are the ones you wish would just die already. Agree or disagree. I feel like these shows would be better off without them.

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-A (Pretty Little Liars)

Yes, I know that the show would be over if we found out who she actually was and killed her, and that’s exactly what I want. My God. I can’t take it aymore. I need to know. They ended the season trying to make us believe that “Red Coat”/ “A”  is in fact Alison. I wanna know how they’re gonna convince me that a teenage girl faked her own death with a matching DNA corpse, let alone all the other impossible shit A be doing (stealing bodies from the morgue, removing sunken cars from the bottom of the lake, blackmailing just about everyone, killing people). Sigh. Anyway…

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Walter White (Breaking Bad)

Who says you can’t hate the star of the show? I used to like Walt during season 1. I felt bad for him. He had a shitty life and it just kept getting worse. He started cooking meth to give his family stability after he died. I get it. But as I mentioned before that pompous attitude of his gets overbearing. He wants all the praise of being the best cook/genius but doesn’t wanna get caught. He tries so hard to be about that life but it’s so obviously forced. Also, I despise his skinhead baldy.

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Skylar White (Breaking Bad)

I couldn’t forget Walter’s better half. I don’t have much to say about Skylar other than she’s the top 5 most annoying wives in the history of television drama. If she’s the prime example of what lower middle class housewives are like then I need to stay clear of that part of the country. I don’t wanna turn into a complete cu—bitch. And she was acting like this way before Walt started being a complete dickhead so I’m not even gonna give her that. If she isn’t killed, I wish she would divorce Walt, take half his drug money (that she can frame him for if he denies) and move to the south of France. Start a new life girl. Take the stick out of your ass.

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T-Dog (The Walking Dead)

HA! He’s already dead. And he should be for giving himself a fuckass tag name like T-Dog.

That’s it. I need to start watching more shows. =/

Shows You’d Most Likely Stop Watching If These Characters Died

Living in the reality television era which consists of D-list celebs, the wives, ex wives, or mistresses of the disgustingly wealthy, and simple Americans MTV deems worthy of making more money than 40% of this country in one episode, I’m glad that there’s a decent amount of tv dramas still around. But am I the only one who would boycott these shows if the following characters were killed off?

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Daryl Dixon (The Walking Dead)

In a zombie apocalypse where more than half the cast ain’t worth a damn, I’d be livid if anybody kills Daryl. Note, I didn’t say gets Daryl killed because that would mean a walker bit him which would mean he’s not the illest person alive with a crossbow! Seriously, I love Daryl. He’s not the redneck he used to be in those few episodes of season 1 and even then he was the only one who knew how to protect himself. He’s loyal to his group, caring, very useful and still manages to be a bad ass.

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Jesse Pinkman (Breaking Bad)

Jesse is a sweetheart. He’s not a bad guy. He just wants to do drugs and get money. What’s wrong with that? He doesn’t wanna hurt anyone. He doesn’t wanna kill people. He’s chilling. Walter came out of no where with his cancer and financial woes and fucked his life up. If Jesse gets murdered off and I gotta deal with Walter’s pompous bullshit for a full hour with no relief, I don’t think I’m gonna make it.

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Eric Northman (True Blood)

Lemme just say, I’m completely here for Alexander Skarsgard okay. I am clocked in and on muh fucking time just to see his unexplainably sexy, handsome self. Alongside with Pam, they are the only characters that ever make any sense and don’t get on my goddamn nerves. But, I could watch True Blood on mute as long as I can see Eric. And I just might have to because the storylines haven’t been up to par for 2 whole seasons now. If the writers ever decide to give my boo Eric the true death, I might just unsubscribe from HBO all together.