Friday, October 3, 2014

Black Speculative Fiction Month, Day 3: Author Thelonious Legend #BSFM

We're a few days into the month, with our month of educating audiences about Black Speculative Fiction authors, main characters of African diaspora, or just anything we deem uber cool to highlight this month.

One of the coolest things are connecting with authors. This month is especially cool, since Speculative Fiction reaches such wide audiences. It's awesome to get the incite of many awesome authors this month, and see how they look at the event to reflect.

Thelonious Legend, author of "Sins of The Father" joins us tonight. He talks about his love, and eventual journey to pen a series that empowered Black children, that were also girls. All children of color lack literary role models in books, but Black children typically are affected different ways, due to the negativity we receive in the media.
Here's how Thelonious is spreading awareness this year!

1. So Black Speculative Fiction Month is a time where fans of Black writers within the Speculative Fiction can reflect. Prior to this year, did you have any knowledge of BSFM? If not, what were the initial reactions with the event? If so, what did you do differently the year before, since the birth of the event?
No, I didn't have any knowledge of BSFM before two weeks ago. But I think it's great and I love the idea that your organization is creating a platform to promote #BSFM.

2. Have you always been a fan of Speculative Fiction? Do you think the genre's dynamic changes when diversity becomes a major player in the genre?
 I've been a fan of speculative fiction before I knew what speculative fiction was. Also I'm a firm believer that diversity makes everything better especially in the arts. Take TV for example.  The 1980's would not have been the same without The Cosby Show.  In the 1990's, Spike Lee's Do The Right Thing was the salvo for a decade.  And even in the 2000's, it was the Blade series that cemented how viable Super-Hero movies could be. And as far as literature, no name rings more true in Speculative Fiction's than Octavia Butler.

3. As a writer and blogger, you promote diversity in more ways than most. As a writer you can bring a story to life, but as a blogger, you can bring awareness to that story. With Speculative Fiction written by black authors, exposure becomes a necessity, more so than writers whom aren't of color. Would you have any tips on how others, whether they be writers, bloggers, readers,the like, could spread awareness about #BSFM?
If I could offer any writer's words of advice it would be social media, social media, social media. Social Media is the rock in David's sling. If done right you can break through the noise and slay the literal giant. And it's important to realize that writing a novel, and promoting it are separate skill sets and if you want to be in this game for the long haul one is just as important to master as the other.

4. When did you know you wanted to write Speculative Fiction(as opposed to traditional fiction)? 
I've always been a sci-fi and fantasy fan, but it wasn't until my daughters started reading, that I had the desire to write a science fiction book.  To me, it is so important that children see themselves between the pages and not just as side-kicks. I wanted to pen a novel of strong black female characters that my daughters could identify with.  A female James Bond type who is beautiful in her own unique way and realizes it, kicks butt, and gets the guy at the end.

5. Who are some of your favorite Black authors who write Speculative Fiction? Why does their work matter to you? What makes them stand out to you? 

I'm going to give a shout out to a couple of my friends who write speculative fiction.  The first is Madhuri Blaylock who writes a paranormal urban romance trilogy. And what I like most about her books is the prose. She has an elegant writing style that fits her chosen genre like a glove. Big fan of that girl.  The second is John Darryl Winston. He wrote an Urban Fantasy Novel titled IA:Initiate. And what I most find appealing about his writing is the symmetry and balance.  What I mean by that, is nothing is free in his novel. You have a super power? Cool, but it comes at a cost. You want to use violence to solve a problem? Fine, but be mindful of the repercussions.

If you were wondering, that's Thelonious with his Wonder Woman of a wife. Together they've created future superheroes that will change the world. Join Thelonious Legend on Twitter. He's the creator of the #BlackComicsChat hashtag, and can be found @TheLegendBooks.



  1. Thanks for the interview and the support you provide to diverse writers and books! Much Love!

  2. Thank you for the kind words, Legend.

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  4. You are making me blush, Thelonious! Thank you for including me in this great interview. You rock, kind sir.


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