Sunday, July 5, 2015

Favorite Authors

Reading has been a favorite hobby of mine for as long as I can remember. Nothing in the world can compare to reading a damn good book.  At least for me, nothing compares. I remember being in grade school and getting my own library card, all just to check out and read a new book. I had developed a love for reading and I even had my own library of books after the librarian convinced me to join RIF (Reading is Fundamental), program that allowed you to be rewarded with a new book every week.  My mother never had to fight with me to read,  and she never had to  wander where I was.  I was either in the library or in my room somewhere reading a book.  Reading was then and still is my very favorite thing to do. I also remember that although I loved Judy Blume (Are You there God, It's Me Margaret, and  Wifey and Beverly Clearly (Ramona Series), I yearned for the day there would be African-American authors that would tell my story or at least stories that I could relate to.    Don't get me wrong, as a child,  Judy Blume and Beverly Clearly were the truth for me. I had no real experiences other than being raised by a single parent, and living in the ghetto,   I just wanted to read a book by an African American writer and see where the author would take me.   I knew then that  I wanted to have a career that involved some sort of story telling.  Either it would be a anchorwoman or some sort of writer. As the years have passed by, I have started writing a manuscript that is still not complete, but I have come across some amazing writers that every time I pick up one of their books, I am simply amazed.  I think I am more happy as an adult to read books than when I was a child and it simply because there are way more African-American authors now that I could have ever conjured up in my mind.  The first African-American writer I read was Terry McMillian's Waiting to Exhale and I remember having to go and find her other books, Mama and Disappearing Acts. I remember thinking boy my people have arrived.  It seemed to me at one time in my earlier years that African-Americans were denied or were not good enough to be in a creative field or there was some kind of belief that we didn't read. After reading Terry McMillian I remember even reading some of E Lynn Harris' books like Just As I am and Invisible Life.  I remember reading a bio or something on E Lynn  Harris where he was saying that someone was critiquing his work and to bring Basil to life , he E Lynn Harris had to become that character, if I am not mistaken. When reading I often wonder how many authors have used this advice.  Somewhere down the line I got hooked on what I like to say, the hood drama soapbox. I can't remember who was the first hood book I read, but they haven't disappointed me yet.   I even have a co-worker  that swore she only read Stephen King like books begging to bring her my hood drama books when I finish reading them.  I don't know who I like the most, but I can never pass up a book by Nisa Santiago, my BFF in my head, or Brandie Williams, Ashley and JaQuavis, or even Kim K.  I mean there are so many, I think they all do a fantastic job in bringing their stories to life.  I can identify with them and not because I lived the kind of lives they write about, but I grew up in the environment and I still live in the environment that they are writing about and I see this is not only something that they made up.  No, I know they are not any of their biographies but the hit the nail right on the head and its that much believable.  I have so many of the street drama books, I can open my own library.  As I continue to work on my own work, I just want to say thank you for paving the way to some of my favorite authors: Terry McMillan, Rosalyn McMillan, Nisa Santiago, Kim K, Ashley and JaQuavis, Terri Woods, Nikki Turner, Keisha Ervin, Kiki Swinson, Danielle Santiago, Tonya Ridley, Erica Hilton, Noire, Azarel, J Tremble, Miss KP and Michael Baisden.  All of you guys have kept reading as my favorite pastime and all of you have provided that inspiration and drive to keep on writing my manuscript.  I hope one day my name be on someone's list as their favorite author.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

The Baddest, She Is

For as long as I can remember, reading has been my ultimate pastime.  Give me a good book and that's it.  I remember being a little girl wanting to read all the time. Once my mom allowed me to go to the library by myself, that's where you would always find me.  During those days, Judy Blume and Beverly Clearly ruled the literary world for children I don't really remember any African American authors for children I just remember that there weren't any that were writing books at all, like there is today.   Back then there was RIF (Reading Is Fundamental) where you earned the chance to get a free book every Thursday, I believe.  I remember always looking forward to Thursdays.  I have to be honest I like, street novels, they are actually my favorite and I always feel like the story lines are relatable to my childhood in some kind of way.  Nisa Santiago, is the business.  I don't know where she came from, but she is pentastic. She is an incredible writer and I always look forward to reading her latest work.  I just finished Face-Of, part four to Bad Apple and I could not put it down. She never disappoints.  I hope one day I get a chance and write the story that I want to.

Friday, April 24, 2015

What Would You Do?

Lately I've been pondering the thought of what would one do regarding certain scenarios. Like for instance, what would you do, if one friend came to you and said she thinks another of your friends wanted your husband or boyfriend.  What would you do?  What would you say?  How would you confront that friend or would you bring both friends together?  How about if your friend stopped talking to you and you didn't know why?  What would you do?  Would you care? What if it was something stupid like, you didn't show up for her child's birthday party or you came to the party and you didn't bring a gift? Or maybe you were the maid of honor at her wedding but you didn't give her a bridal shower, but you were there every time she needed you.  What if you tried to give her a bridal shower but what you were planning to do, just didn't come to fruition?  Why do people let things bother them that their friends or family do to them without telling them what they did?  What if you find out that you did "something" to your friend subconsciously years later and that was why you haven't spoken to that friend in years?  Could you ever repair that friendship?  What if you allowed your friend to use your credit cards and he/she refused to pay?  What would you do to get the money that you are owed?  I can honestly say that a few of these things has happened to me with more than one person that I thought of as a sister-friend. All I can really say is that I was hurt, my spirit was broken and I realized that these friendships could never be repaired.  In some of the scenarios, we did talk, but I couldn't get pass that someone I truly loved like a sister couldn't come to me and have a heart-to-heart.  It showed me that the trust and admiration that  I had for them, they didn't have the same for me.  I didn't and wasn't going to allow myself to be subjected to accusations of wanting to sleep with my friend's boyfriend, a man who was in fact cheating, just not with me.  The irony of her accusing me of wanting her boyfriend because a mutual friend that was jealous of our blossoming friendship, was the next day I saw him leave his house in the morning with another female.  Did I tell her, no let her find out on her own, because again I did not want to be subjected with the b.s we women tend to throw around when we confront our men about their cheating ways. Don't get me wrong I miss the friendships that I had with both, but I know in my heart the friendship could never be the same again.  If my friend got to question my "alleged" desire for her boyfriend or her husband something that she herself never witnessed, there's no need for us to be friends.  If my friend can't come to me when she think I've done her wrong, then what kind of friendship do we share?  I rather hold on to the memories when we were good friends and let us just part ways.  I can't be friends with someone who questions my loyalty and I can't be friends that can't communicate with me when we have unresolved issues.  It's better that we break the links that once held us together. Now tell me what would you do?

Friday, April 10, 2015

Control Freak

Do you work with someone or under someone that is a control freak, that when visitors come into the door, "the control freak" on your job who supposed to be managing the floor and making sure the floor is staffed properly, takes over your job. Sometimes I just want to ask "the control freak", why am I here,  but then I just smile gracefully and say to myself, "if that's what make the "control freak" feel productive, let it go, let it be.  I know this will be something that I will never win.  I keep reminding myself that I must continue to fight and I must push forward.  I have to do better in order to get where I want to be.  I notice when the "control freak" is not in the office, everything goes so smooth.  I know the "control freak" is trying to impress the administrators that are in charge of her, although I'm sure they're laughing at her because most of the time she is "faking it until she makes it", but I still can't understand why do people want their employees to work in a hostile environment.  Beats me.  I can almost bet that the little money I work for that when its time for the "control freak" to be shown the door, its going to be without hesitation.  I try to treat everybody the same, because you can't please everyone, especially when you work in a customer service oriented industry.  I just have to break away and find my true happiness with writing.

The Friendship That Ended
About a year or so ago, my mother had called me to say that she was re-establishing her credit, after declaring bankruptcy some years ago.  I remember telling her that was good, but to not overdue it.  Don't tell anyone that you have credit cards, don't tell anyone about the loan she had gotten and damn sure don't let anyone use your credit cards.  I remember damn near begging her not to reveal her new found "credit status or luck" that had fallen into her lap. I had also warned her that she was retired and that she needed to be mindful of her spending habits because she was now living on a fixed income.  She kept telling me that everything was under control, that her and her friend that she had known over 40 years was being careful.  Why don't parents listen to their children, its beyond me, because everything I told her about what her friend would do, her friend of 40 years did to her.  I was so pissed off with her because not only did she not listen, she got mad when I told her of the errors she made.  Money is definitely the root of all evil and anytime a grown woman has grown children living with her, that's who she should be going to when she needs something, not your friend who is retired living on a fixed income who just re-establish her credit.  Of course that same friend don't want to pay, and now she is stuck.  Parents just because you are older, sometimes you have to listen to your children.  Now I must find a way to help her with her finances some kind of way, I know she better not ever be friends with that Kitty lady again.  I really hope Kitty is an old memory and I hope she never speaks her name again. I really dislike people who are users and tend to take advantage of people.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The Powerless

When you are powerless in your current situation, work, home, or your relationship, its time to take a stand and make changes for yourself.  You may be constantly asking yourself over and over, "When will I be ready to take that leap?"  The one thing that I realized is that we all have a purpose in life, but I know for me I can't keep allowing myself to be powerless and be in a powerless position.  I know that I need to take some necessary steps in order to be powerful.  I'm tired of people lying, just to hear themselves talk.  I'm tired of people just trying to be relevant, so they lie just to have something to say.  It's shameful because to lie and not gain anything from it, its a waste of time.  Lying to be malicious is dangerous and that tells me that I can't trust you and that I must always watch my back.  I never like to walk on egg shells and I am not a robot or a puppet that you pull the strings and I do what you want me to do.  That will never work, at least for me.  There's a time and place for everything and sometimes you have to know when the ride is over, the thrill is gone.  I am definitely going to try to build a brand for myself and take this writing as far as I can.

Monday, March 23, 2015

The End

The hardest thing to do is to say goodbye to a loved one, once the time has come for them to close their eyes.  We all know we didn't come here to stay, but when its time to say goodbye, it really is just so hard to say goodbye.  You should never be that mad with someone that you never get to resolve whatever issues that caused you to stop communicating.  You should never get that mad that you never get the chance to apologize or have a sit-down.  As my father's one-year anniversary of his death quickly approaches, that's all that I think about.  I never got the chance to really have that father-daughter talk especially after his sister, my aunt told him some things that I had said.  I am living with so much regret, but there's nothing that I can really do.  Every time I  go over the obituary or read the online book that the funeral home provided for mourners to leave messages, I can't help but to feel slighted because my cousin was with him the night he died.  That really bothers me, not because she sat there, but because I wasn't able to.  Don't get me wrong I'm glad he wasn't by himself. I just hope when I get on my knees at night, or when I call upon my father me, he is able to hear me.  There is so many things that I would have like to change.  That's why if you need to make amends with a love one, don't wait until its too late. Don't wait until tomorrow, tomorrow may never come.

Monday, March 16, 2015

What's Going On?

The brutal attack by a mob of high school girls on a single yet small-framed girl was uncalled for. The car driving in the urban area of Fort Greene trying to lure young girls is troubling.  As a mother it hurt me to my core to watch them brutally assault that lone student, but I was more flabbergasted to watch as the mob was cheered on by other peers. To see adults in the crowd just watching and no staff of McDonalds' stepping in to intervene was mind-boggling.   To read that a car was trying to lure children in the area that I grew up in was crazy. A lot of my childhood friends still live there with their children and grandchildren.  This never use to happen there. What is going on today with our young people and what's wrong with people still trying to lure other people's  children in their cars?
 Its not easy on the mind.  Just to know that after I separate from my son in the morning to get on the train , he could be attacked by a mob of children and no one would do anything to help him, they would just take out their camera phones and turn the other cheek.   I watched that video several times, not for pleasure but to show my son what could be waiting for him, if he doesn't follow my directions.  I used to be skeptical about allowing him to leave home because of all the sexual predators and other troubles that may be lurking.  This is a double shot, you have to be skeptical for the perverts and the mob of bullies. 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Why I'm Blogging

Hello, my name is Annette Burton and the reason why I decided to be a blogger was because I love to write.  Some years ago, I received my B.A. in Media Studies from Hunter College and I took a lot of writing courses.  I even started a manuscript at one time.  I just never finished and life happened like it happens to everyone and it passed me by.  No matter what job I always had I always came back to wanting to write, my first love, my passion.  I decided to name my blog Breaking The Link for several different reasons. I come from a family that is somewhat dysfunctional.  There are a lot of issues that certain family members carried with them from childhood into adulthood and I am hoping that they will recognize their issues and get help.  We all know that whatever or whenever there are problems, if you don’t seek help immediately, problems can literally destroy one’s happiness.  So whatever is troubling you, a bad relationship, marriage, or even a friendship gone wrong sometime you have to Break the Link.

Half-Siblings Drama

Having more than one father for your children is never ideal, just like having multiple women to birth your  many children is not too ideal either, but life happens and decisions have to be made. You move on. People die, people fall out of love just as quickly as they fall in love.  You move on and start over. You leave a relationship because your partner is abusive or maybe you found out your lover or husband is a chronic cheater, life still goes on. What happens when children are born into this disaster? They are often lost, confused and sad.  Sometimes there is resentment amongst the children because they have different fathers. Or maybe, just maybe the siblings have different mothers because Papa was a “Rolling Stone.” Child “A” father may not be a good provider, like Child “B’s” father, what do you do? Or maybe Child “A” father was never in the picture and Child “A” doesn’t know his or her father. Maybe Child “A” father passed away, how do one help their child understand and cope with not having a father.  What if Child “B” father was a somma time father, a somma time provider, you still have to help your children understand, they are loved nonetheless. How do you help your children understand? How do you keep your children from resenting one another.  You have to find a way.  You do what you need to do.  As a mother you have to make sure the link is secured and that the link can’t be broken.  It not always an easy task, but as a mom, you find ways to make your broken family work.

Monday, March 2, 2015

The Cycle

 Just to see him laugh and smile more would be joyous enough.  The frown he wears on his face is so heartbreaking that I sometimes don't know how to comfort him. It brings back so many unwanted and hurtful memories, but I don't ever remember being this sad.I know what he's missing, but I can't really fix the relationship between him and his father. I dare not to fix the relationship that I had with his father. I couldn't even fully fix my relationship with my own father.  My father and I talked, we just never bonded. He said he's tired of being disappointed. I know I sure was tired. It's no fun depending on others.  The one person that won't disappoint you, is yourself. I sure hope the lessons I'm teaching him will make him a dependable man one day. Now my father, his grandfather is dead, and that relationship can never be fixed. I don't want him to have the kind of relationship I had with my father, awkward and useless. Ioften felt like I  was in the company of a stranger when I was around my father.  Its time to end this cycle and break the link.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Broken Family

I have been going over this in my head for quite some time. There is so much I want to say, so much that I need to say, but then again how will I say it. Am I really ready to say what I need to say. I tried having this talk with my father before he passed last year, but I got nothing. I often have this conversation with my mother and its still nothing. No one knows another person's pain until all parties involved really sit down and have that much needed conversation. I often ask myself, "why talk", if the other party or parties are not going to listen or if there is no real resolutions, then why keep having the conversation. Parents don't realize that they initially are choosing which road their child will take when they decide to have children out of wedlock or any other unfortunate roadblock that their child is born into. Sometimes you just have to let it go and break the links because the pain never go away, there isn't any medication your doctor can prescribe to you to ease the pain of a broken family.