WIN a free membership: SCBWI Caribbean South

The Caribbean South chapter of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) is giving away two free annual memberships.

All you have to do is submit an unpublished children’s manuscript from any of the islands listed below that speaks about your island’s folklore or draw your very own ‘Tanti Merle’ from Paul Keens Douglas “Tanti at the Oval.”

The Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators is a professional information and networking society of over 19,000 authors, agents, editors and illustrators world wide. Based in Los Angeles, the SCBWI is the largest of its kind and has chapters in 200 regions. Our membership package is an invaluable tool for aspiring and professional writers and artists. It includes indispensable ‘how to’ articles and a directory of publishers in the field. One of the best things about SCBWI membership is the networking opportunity it presents to gain fruitful contacts the world over.

The Caribbean South chapter was launched in Trinidad in September 2005 and serves the following islands Anguilla, Saint Maarten, St Barbs, Saba, Barbuda, St Kitts and Nevis, Antigua, Guadeloupe, Montserrat, Dominica, Martinique, St Lucia, Barbados, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada, Guyana, Aruba, Curacao, Bonaire, Tortuga and Trinidad and Tobago (and everything in-between)

The competition is open to non-members and members alike, and all work submitted remain the property of the author or illustrator.

The deadline to submit is November 1, 2017. 

SCBWI-2017-Competition

For further information and membership details visit http://www.scbwi.org.

 

Marsha Gomes-Mckie, Regional Advisor , Caribbean South

info@marshagomes.com

 

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i did it my way

#HannibalBarca, was a Carthaginian general, considered one of the greatest military commanders in history and he committed #suicide, that part of his story irked me for very long. I just couldn’t understand how such a strong mind could do a weak thing like that. It took me years to just process it. After i read his story again and again and researched his life it occurred to me that the problem was my perception. Barca was a man who controlled his own fate, he owned life and to ask him not to own death as well was out of his character. He didn’t wait for life to unfold itself, he commanded it and he did not wait for death either: to take everything it could and in the end leave him barely human. He wanted it to be his choice and it was.

It was as simple as that.

There are so many arguments that suicide is selfish but killing thousands of people to take over someone else’s country is also selfish.

There is the argument that there is always hope, but who are you to define hope for me. What if my hope is for heaven or even hell.

There is a madness in consciousness that looks sane to everyone until you snap.

So if you aren’t ready to be that person to talk me off the ledge when i am alive don’t cry for me when i am gone, even if you tried to talk me off the ledge and i still jumped just respect that i was and ever will live in your hearts and i did it my way.  The ledge was my path.

You too, have your own choice to make and if you wait for death and live every bit of life until the end then all it means is that you did it your way. You just can’t compare different human beings and expect them to make the same choices.

Just enjoy the time you have.

#Barca #robinwilliams #allthosewhenbefore

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The truth about Climate Change

There is #climatechange.

I don’t need a scientist to verify this for me, i am alive and i can remember what my landscape used to look like and what is looks like now.

The sun is so hot some days that i feel it pushing my head down, a feeling i have never felt and then almost without warning the rain falls so hard. There is water everywhere, places where water knows it should not be but it dares me to push it back as it laughs at my surprise. Maybe the seasons have also been hit by this dark magic that permeates the people of the world to sit idly by and do nothing. Maybe it too has been hypnotized and dazed, no longer responding to stimulus or good sense.

Climate change

Like most things climate change begins with you in your community. If you think about the big picture and global warming you will be crippled. So you start small and you reverse the change that is affecting you personally.

If we all take a piece of the cake it will eventually have no cake left.

Join a Climate Support Group or follow pages for updates or start your OWN group in your area.

Caribbean Climate Trackers

NASA Climate Change

Climate Change Guide

I Heart Climate Scientists

Just begin by asking yourself: How has Climate change affected me and what am I going to do about it?

 

Marsha

Empress_Expressions

April 2017

How many more must die? Pick a number.

There is a heaviness in the world today, the people feel it even though we are afraid to admit it.

There is a deep uncertainty that leaders are still on our side. Where are the candidates of valor that we are waiting for? We elect the un-electable’ and hope for the best or better yet we ignore the electoral process entirely and still we hope for the best. It’s the first stage of dementia; to do nothing and expect something.

We have been chasing developing country status and the dream lifestyles feed to us by a wayward media and it has corrupted our natural instincts and dulled our reflexes. We see everything that is going wrong but we are moving in slow motion, hypnotized and dazed, our brains just aren’t responding to any stimulus.

What is this magic?

What is this disease?

I must snap out of it. I must hold myself and shake myself until i can feel again but it is too late because war is already on our doorsteps.

 

It would seem that my generation is doomed to see a great war worst than the wars we already know. Pieces of the war puzzle are just falling into place and like puppets they dance to the rhythm that says war, war and more war.

That thought does not make me happy.

You see citizens of countries who go to war have one particular thing in common: a government who do not speak for them. War is not a solution, it is a break down of governance and communication. War happens because of a “me” complex, there is no ‘us’ in war because if you stop to think about us, you would think. How may will die? What is an acceptable number? and no figure would be low enough but zero. So to protect “us” you will not go to war.  However since you are thinking about you (your money, your interests, your legacy, your pride), then you protect yourself and your family in your castle, in your tower with bodyguards and you leave the rest of us to fend for ourselves.

how many more must die

The question remains.

How many more must die? Pick a number you are comfortable with.

 

Marsha

Empress_Expressions 

April 2017.

Book of the Day resumes in 2017

book-of-the-day

Caribbean Books Foundation’s Book of the Day promotional book feature resumes in 2017. It will run from the 1st January to 30 November 2017. 

Books from the online catalog are chosen randomly and by genre to fill this feature and are usually set a month in advance.

Authors who join the online catalog at http://www.caribbeanbooks.org are also welcomed to request a date to be featured if the date correspondence with a book launch or book giveaway.

Caribbean Books Foundation is an international platform that connects the Caribbean Community and its Diaspora through its literature.

 

 

 

 

I like to sleep in the New Year

I like to sleep in the New Year.

I admit it’s a super lame tradition but it’s me.  I meet the New Year in spirit in my dreams and wake to find the dawn instead of the darkness of the night.

I can’t say I am never awaken by fireworks or alerts on my phone wishing me a happy new year but I generally make no plans and fall asleep before mid-night as if it was any other night. I don’t begrudge being awoken around midnight but I am usually fast asleep before most people.

Nevertheless, I am cognizance of the fact that it’s a New Year – a New Year of wonder and blessings.

Here’s wishing that everyone meet the New Year in peace and receive bountiful blessings from the most high.

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Empress_Expressions – looking to 2017

8 Tips For Enjoying The Holiday Season — Critics May Lie

You ready for it? TIP ONE 1st Breakfast You should have this when you wake up to open gifts at dawn. Something more than lemon water, please. Remember, it is Christmas and crumbs look best in between wrapping paper. TIP TWO 2nd Breakfast A little heavier than 1st breakfast, this is the morning’s main […]

via 8 Tips For Enjoying The Holiday Season — Critics May Lie

New Book Traces Black Country’s Caribbean History

Repeating Islands

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The history of their journey is now a familiar one – arriving from the warmth of the Caribbean to a cold, often hostile Britain, which was sold to them as the Motherland that needed rebuilding–a report by Poppy Brady for The Voice Online.

RARELY is a book produced that so accurately reflects its subject matter: Black Country Roots, the story of the African Caribbean people’s experience of life in the Black Country, holds up a mirror to their lives.

But it’s more than simply a book – it’s a fine example of team work because it’s been written by the people themselves who have told their stories in their own words.

The history of their journey is now a familiar one – arriving from the warmth of the Caribbean to a cold, often hostile Britain, which was sold to them as the Motherland that needed rebuilding after the devastation…

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Come home …

Image result for brain drain definition

When i was younger i learnt about the ‘brain drain’ theory in school. It’s real. The ‘brain drain’ is the departure of educated or professional people from one country, economic sector, or field for another usually for better pay or living conditions and guess where most of the drain ended up. In America.

For so many years the Caribbean has seen some of its best succumb to the allure of the American currency and so has many other nations. Citizens leave and pledge allegiance to the good old USofA and forget that their homeland need their talent, their wisdom and economics and their taxes to grow.

When i was younger i imagined people coming off the plane in New York City and a mesmerizing wind took away their senses. That could be the only explanation for leaving children to be called barrel babies and leaving parents to grow old and die without them. America was hypnotic black magic to my little mind. Today my family and my heart is in Trinidad so there is no temptation to find out what lies beyond the magic flight.

That said, i want immigrants to know that every time a professional chooses to work in another country or build a business in another land, the economy at home losses out on your contribution. Yes, go to the country educated yourself, learn a new skill, absorb everything but please come home. It’s time to turn the ‘brain drain‘ into a ‘brain gain.

I know today there are many second generations Caribbean national who were born and raised in America and its all you know but just like your grandparents who moved seeking better, you also have the option of moving back and not just because of the political climate but because you are a part of something more. You are always welcome because you can build a brighter future.

The economic climate in the Caribbean 50 years ago was very different from today. Today we are on the threshold of rapid economic growth, with technological advances and infrastructural growth. It’s a great time to help grow something that appreciates your effort. It’s time to MAKE the CARIBBEAN GREAT.

make-the-carib-great  Today you can return and be your own boss. You can apply to jobs from America at www.caribbeanjobs.com and come to the island prepared.

Don’t wait until you are deported or frustrated, make this an option upfront. After College say to yourself i wonder what the Caribbean offers. Come back home with granny and visit the beach every weekend, explore all your options.

 

Come home.

Empress_Expressions