Sunday, March 22

Leaning on Faith - Becoming a Published YA Author with L. Divine

L. Divine, Educator, Award-Winning Author and Entrepreneur 

Topic:  Leaning on Faith - Becoming a Published YA Author with L. Divine

Empowering Our Youth with the Written Word with L. Divine.  She is the author of the young adult fiction series Drama High. Listen to her Sisterhood message:

About the Author
In April of 2001, L. Divine began work on her series of books for young adults appropriately titled Drama High. As a teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District, L. Divine noticed a rapid decline of literacy among youth. Her motivation for writing for teenagers was to create material that would simply inspire them to read for pleasure.

Drama High, the premiere African American young adult fiction series, takes the reader on the familiar roller coaster ride that everyone knows and experiences in high school. We follow the main character, Jayd Jackson, through her first-person experiences with friends, boys, enemies, teachers, and family. Although this series focuses on the life of Jayd Jackson, a young black girl from Compton, CA attending a predominantly white high school in the South Bay of Southern California, the premise and issues are universal.

The books have caught on quickly. L. Divine has had excellent reviews in Publisher’s Weekly, Kirkus, Essence and Ebony magazines as well as several newspapers. The public has shown special interest in her series and it is swiftly growing in popularity. There are currently 18 volumes in publication, which debuted October, 2006.

When not writing, L. Divine guest lectures and holds workshops for writers and young adults. She is also involved in community activities and serves as a writing expert on various panels. L. Divine served as a Visiting Scholar in the Center for the Study of Women at UCLA and continues to be an active member of academia, researching issues in African Diaspora and Women’s Studies.

An avid volunteer, L. Divine continues to serve communities who would not otherwise have access to the novels by donating her time and books to local schools and community programs focusing on African American teenagers. L. Divine has every intention of pursuing her goal: inspiring young people to read for pleasure. She already has plans for her second series, Drama U, which will focus on Jayd’s college experience.

L. Divine was raised in Compton, California and has lived all over Los Angeles, as well as in Jamaica, West Indies. She now resides in Atlanta with her husband, R.M. Johnson, daughter, and son.

The Honey Spot by L. Divine (Adult Fiction) 

Keke McCoy, a.k.a Brandy, an overworked and underpaid journalist, is given the opportunity to write the story of a lifetime. Unfortunately, it hits close to home and she is forced to deal with demons she thought were buried ten years—and forty pounds—ago when she left her former life as one of Atlanta’s premier exotic dancers. Monaka, the dancer who took Keke’s place at The Honey Spot—a female owned strip club outside of Atlanta, Georgia—is brutally murdered while giving a private dance. 

Keke has to face the feelings of betrayal her dance sisters and former benefactor, HoneyMama, felt when she wrote the article that allowed her to change professions, and unfortunately also gave both stripping and The Spot, as it is affectionately called, more bad press than good. 

Her boss, Charlie, pressures Keke to “dig deeper” and choose between her loyalty to The Spot and her desire to pen an award-winning article that could make or break her career as a writer. She also speaks candidly about her lover, Ian, whose random disappearing acts control when their relationship is on or off, her attempt to stay strong and not give into the advances of her ex-boyfriend, Drew, a detective also assigned to the case, and her desire to find her “spot” again.

The Honey Spot is a sensually mysterious read that keeps its audience guessing in more ways than one. In the end, all of the characters finally get the justice they deserve. 


Drama High: Rogue  by L. Divine (YA Fiction) 

Sometimes a girl’s got to take matters into her own hands...

After defeating her grandmother’s closest enemy, Jayd Jackson’s world should be simpler, but not a chance—especially not with a crew like hers. With Mickey and G on the run, Nigel being sued by Nellie’s abusive boyfriend, David, Jeremy back in trouble with the law thanks to his vengeful wifey, Cameron, and Mama slacking on the job to keep her man, Jayd has no time to focus on the normal things that every high school senior should be doing. 

Thankfully she still has her best guy friend, Chase, in her corner, who is none the wiser to all of the drama that he recently endured at the hands of Jayd’s evil neighbor, Esmeralda, who just won’t rest in peace or let Jayd get any rest at all. 

In order to regain her sanity, Jayd decides to go completely rogue in her personal, professional, and spiritual lives. But can she really let go of it all, or will her natural inclination to alter events for the sake of her friends and family take over once again, also giving way to her darker side? Jayd’s the only person who can see herself through this mess, but in order to do so she has to regain control of her dreams before they ultimately control her. 

See all of the Drama High Book Series (14 Books for YA Readers)

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