Okay...I'm back! Had a lot of fun hanging with my family down in ATL!
So this morning, I'm back into the swing of things and my normal morning routine. Listened to SIRIUS in the car. First some CNN and then switched over to SHADE 45 (a hip hop station). When I switched over, I caught the tail end of an interview with an author named NIKKI TURNER, who supposedly, is a best selling author! Okay...Congrats!
Listening to her talk about her latest book GHETTO SUPERSTAR, I couldn't help laughing...I mean...cringing at the thought of people actually entertaining this type of literary.....crap!
My bad I guess for being overly critical but I'm sorry........if the way she talks is any indication of how she writes then I can't imagine how she cracked the NY Times best seller list! What is literature coming to?
I have an EXTREME abhorrence for "ghetto/urban" trash books. So in all fairness, even if this Nikki Turner has a modicum of talent as a writer, I instantly classify her and her books as GARBAGE!!
Quite some time ago, I promised a young lady that I would buy her a copy of Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man and a copy of Alice Walker's Possessing The Secret of Joy. I naturally made my way to the more prominent AFRICAN AMERICAN bookstore located in the neighborhood. (Ft.Greene Brooklyn) Upon entering, I browsed around on my own figuring I'd be able to find these outstanding books without too much effort. I mean come on....Ellison, Walker...a black bookstore...hello?? After an unsuccessful search, I had to ask for assistance.
The person helping me, needed me to repeat what I was looking for a few times!! Turned out that NEITHER book was in stock! The clerk had to look on the computer, doing searches to find what I asked for as if I asked for some randomly obscure book on Mexican Midget Mud Wrestling!! ELLISON!!!!! WALKER!!!! You would think that it wouldn't be that difficult to find either of these amazing and highly revered authors works in a black bookstore.
You know what books were right up front....predominantly displayed...huge posters and all?
GHETTO QUEEN VOL. 1
PIMPS AND ICE
BABY MAMA DRAMA!
DATZ MY BITCH!
BOOTY LUVIN' (actually, I think this one is a porn! lol!)
HOES AND TRICKS
RIMS AND BITCHES!
MY BABY DADDY!
I nearly fell out!
In additon to the plethora of urban fiction titles showcased, there was a whole wall full of the profound work of....KARRINE STEFFANS! A.K.A. "SUPERHEAD!!" Nothing against the chick for makin' a buck.....but damn, did she even bother to teach this super talent of hers to the ladies out there??! Do all of us men a favor!!? If so, I might actually be able to co-sign on having the sisters read that one!! Probably pass a few copies out to some sistas myself! From what I understand, she didn't even share her...."super" head game!! So what was the point??? (Speakin' of sex...Don't even let me get started on the hack writing of ZANE who has somehow made a huge name for herself penning god awful, trite black erotica books with no real imagination and the inability to describe a decent fuck without sounding like a billion other people!) (Even got a Showtime series out of it! Talk about HORRIBLE!!!)
Getting back to the "urban fiction".....Exactly what kind of crap are they putting out there for young black men and women to read?
Here's the argument that I encounter whenever I express my opinions on this:
"Well, at least it's getting them to read!" "It's more interesting to them because they can relate to the stories!"
WHAT A CROCK OF SHIT!!!!
Pushing ghetto trash novels on young people is not a gateway to get them reading more advanced and substantial work! It simply reinforces the ignorant, half witted, ghetto mentality they had to begin with! They relate to it? So what! Let them relate to a larger world....aspire to relate to higher standards! Take them OUT OF THE HOOD! Let their minds wander and explore the world outside of their local streets! Allow them to immerse themselves in quality story telling and revel in the beauty of language and fine writing.
As for the grown folks who insist on reading these books, to each his own. I belive it's quite sad that adults would even bother, but hey. And as for those who say "It's just entertainment and I enjoy the silliness of it all"....well....I have no issue with that providing you've actually read a great deal of quality literature first!