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44-D Book Diaries with Audiegrl: Evie Rhodes’ The Forgotten Spirit

The Forgotten Spirit by Evie RhodesToday’s interview features award-winning gospel songwriter, script writer and nationally best-selling author Evie Rhodes, discussing her timeless classic holiday novel The Forgotten Spirit – A Christmas Tale. A remarkable story filled with the traditions and the spirit of Christmas, just in time for the holiday season.

In The Forgotten Spirit, Rhodes introduces a special girl who is wise beyond her years and blessed with a unique and magical gift. Jamie is no ordinary nine-year-old, but a girl who has been chosen to bring back the love and remembrances that have long been forgotten amid the harsh realities of the world in which she lives…

This heart warming novel is about love, new beginnings, and the amazing power of hope. After all, Christmas is a time for miracles…


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AG: I’ve read that you had a career as a Gospel Hip-Hop artist as Prophecy 1. You were also a songwriter and video scriptwriter. How did you move from music into the publishing field?

EV: It was a very natural path for me, because I considered making music and doing music videos a form of storytelling as well. So for me to move from there to being a novelist, just meant that I had a larger ground to tell stories.

AG: Were you always interested in writing fiction?

EV: I wasn’t, it’s not something I was conscious of for a very long time. Then when I did begin to do a lot of writing, many of the things I wrote just naturally seemed to gravitate to that arena.

AG: How would you describe The Forgotten Spirit? The story has been recently compared to a Christmas classic along the lines of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. How do you see the story?

EV: I see The Forgotten Spirit as a family story that can be embraced by everyone. A story that has warmth, that will have a very long life-span, because it has all the elements of humanity. It has all of the things that we all strive for and want in our lives everyday. The hope, the joy and the peace…those are elements that all people can relate to. Those are things we all, in one way or another, aspire to have in our lives.

AG: Who is the audience for The Forgotten Spirit? Is it more for young adults, or did you intend for it to be the same audience as your other novels?

EV: I didn’t write for a particular audience, it really is a family story than encompasses four generations. The young people, adults and elders are all together in this novel.

AG: What do you hope your readers get from The Forgotten Spirit?

EV: I really hope that my readers come away with something…whatever that something is…that they need to obtain. At the end of the day, only that reader knows what that something is. Something that is meant for them specifically. Overall I want them to enjoy the story and feel that they’ve been someplace different than their own lives.

AG: So far, what has been the reception from the public for the novel?

EV: Phenomenal. It’s truly a blessing. I’ve been getting letters from people in various parts of the country. People from all different backgrounds, tell me how inspired they are by the story. They tell me how the story brings back memories of Christmases past that they had forgotten.

AG: Now that the holiday season is upon us, what would you like people to take away from your novel?

EV: Giving. I consider The Forgotten Spirit the gift that keeps on giving. I hope that my readers will take a moment this season to just give one thing that they may not have given, or haven’t given in a long time. Just give one thing to someone else, or do something for someone else. Just because it’s a good thing to do. They will realize that sometimes, when we give to other people, it may enhance that person’s life, no matter how small it is.

Evie Rhodes began performing her combination of Gospel and Hip-Hop in churches in New York City. She wrote and performed as Prophecy 1 on the album Standing In Da Spirit, which received two awards from Real Blues Magazine for Best Gospel Album and Best Gospel Video for the song Changed. It was also awarded the Canadian Music Award for Best Gospel Album. Her other novels include ‘Street Vengeance‘, ‘Out “A” Order‘, ‘Expired‘ and ‘Criss Cross

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Filed under African-Americans, Art, Book Diaries Series, Books, Children, Christianity, Christmas, Culture, Entertainment, Evie Rhodes, Holidays, Pop Culture, Religion, Uncategorized, United States

Rachel Maddow, Voice of America

By cutting across the grain of US cable news, the sober-minded liberal pundit has become the best talkshow host in America

The Rachel Maddow Show

The Rachel Maddow Show

guardian.co.uk/Amanda Marcotte—Rachel Maddow first came on my radar in the spring of 2004, when she, along with Lizz Winstead and Chuck D of Public Enemy hosted an early morning radio show called Unfiltered on the newly minted Air America, an attempt to counter rightwing talk radio with liberal programming.

Radio has this ability to make the listener feel like they share a secret with the hosts and the few, hard-to-know listeners out there. I hoped people tuned in to listen to the hosts trade jokes and talk about politics and music, and mostly I wanted other people to learn about this Maddow character, who brought to every episode a dynamic mix of sparkling good humour, intelligent analysis and a broad view of what issues should matter.

Unfiltered didn’t make the first round of reshuffling at Air America, but Maddow hung in, hosting her own eponymous radio show and eventually moving to television, first as a guest pundit and now as a host of her own night time political talkshow on MSNBC.

rachel maddowBefore it happened, most American liberals would have never imagined that Maddow could have her own programme on any cable network, much less the same network that had, just a few years before, tried to pull in a rightwing audience by giving hard right nut Michael Savage his own show (before pulling it after he told a gay caller to die from Aids).

It’s not just that Maddow is a liberal. After all, MSNBC had already given a spot to liberal commentator Keith Olbermann and his frequent, angry rants. It was mostly hard to imagine a cable news network rewarding a pundit for being sober-minded and nuanced in her analysis, as well as suspicion that homophobia would prevent it from promoting a lesbian who favours a more masculine way of dressing.

rachelMaddowAdvocateBut 2008 was a year for re-arranging American expectations about who gets to have a voice in public. The Democratic candidate was not only black, but also overtly professorial, and this didn’t diminish his popularity with the public. Hillary Clinton and, yes, even Sarah Palin normalised the idea of more female authority in politics. In a very short period of time, the unthinkable became the reality, and Maddow had her very own MSNBC programme.

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Filed under Culture, Democrats, Gay (LGBT) Rights, Humor, Media and Entertainment, Politics, Television, TV Shows, Women's Issues

Pushing Back on Glenn Beck at the Local Level: How to do it

Posted by guest contributor Color of Change-Columbus

Glenn Beck

Glenn Beck

DailyKos—A group of Columbus activists has compiled a list of local advertisers of the Glenn Beck Radio Show simply by listening in on Beck the past several weeks (sweet Jesus, it was painful to hear the stupidity but somebody had to do it!)

We hope this effort catches on in other cities too—anyone can do it. Commercial breaks typically begin with several national ads which are followed by local spots. We posted the list on several local websites and amongst local progressive groups. Five advertisers have already pulled their ads during Beck’s show (several of which were BIG accounts)!

Our local campaign would really catch fire if the national Color of Change group could blast our list to the email addresses of those who have signed petitions with zip codes beginning with 430, 431 and 432.

We’ve contacted the national Color of Change group but have not heard back. We know they are very busy and a local email blast may not be feasible but it’s worth a shot asking. BTW, a huge tip of the hat the people running Color of Change .

To get more info about their local effort and how you can help, please email Color of Change-Columbus.

Read the rest of the diary @ dailykoslogosmall

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Filed under Media and Entertainment, Politics, Republicans, Television, TV Shows, Uncategorized