Many publishing insiders agree that a prolific writer/author is a working, money-earning one. Thus, I gotta keep it moving. So I’m on to the next project, party people. My cousin put a bug in my ear and I’m running with it.
After breaking the news that his nearly 20-year marriage was ending when he didn’t want it to, he admitted something to me:
He doesn’t want to be single, but he can’t keep living a joyless life.
He wants to be in a loving relationship with a woman who will support him emotionally, encourage him, love him unconditionally, make love to him
unconditionally (these are wants, people), and celebrate his successes with him as they raise a family together. Is that too much to ask?
What will take to get the Black family unit unified? To keep people committed to marriage for the long haul? Why do some men have multiple children without marrying any of their mothers? What does it take for them to find and hold onto true love? How can we make broken home the minority, and the 50+ year wedding anniversaries commonplace?
We wrestled with these and other questions during a 5-hour impromptu brainstorming session (yes–FIVE HOURS on the phone), lots of pacing, lots of note-taking, and story-trading, and thus came up with an idea for a new book. For the sake of comparison, think of it as a cross between The Conversation by Hill Harper, and Steve Harvey’s books, with just one thing missing.
We want a variety of voices on this thing. I don’t want to just write what I think from my limited experience of being a man (that would be zip), or what experts say (although I will include them in a special capacity).
Black Men, We Need You!
Credit: Digital Vision
As my friend and partner Myles W. Miller lamented to me recently, the media is on a campaign to make sure people believe that Black men are a lost cause, or a throwaway species that don’t care about love or family, but that’s of course not the case. By perpetuating this myth, the media continues to make money. There’s money in scandalous reality TV. There’s money in lots of drama-inducing behaviors we see in our community, but there’s no money in positivity? Positive news doesn’t sell.
By interviewing Black men directly, I can use their voices and allow women to “hear them out.” So I’m recruiting interviews from never-married/separated/divorced fathers ages 35 and up to contribute via written essay or phone interview, and will present advice and recommendations from experts as well.
Can You Help?
We’d love to say that our book will reduce divorce statistics, help marriages stay together, give solutions and ideals on how things could be better, help Black couples build together, and heal Black families. But we’d like to give it a shot.
My goal, my plea, my call to you, is to help me get 100+ participants in this project. I want to talk to men of color all over the U.S. , especially Black men, to give us their side of the story about what it’s like to:
- be a single dad
- be punished for being a responsible man because other dudes who ain’t $*#@ (a.k.a. baggage)
- try to accept real love from a woman when you don’t know how to receive it
- being a great dad when you didn’t have one or it wasn’t modeled to you as a child
- ______________ (insert your relationship/co-parenting issue here)
Are you interested in contributing your reflection via phone or written essay? I promise, I won’t put you on blast. Here are the criteria:
- Black Males
- Age: 35 and up
- Status: single dad/ divorced / separated / co-habitating (NOTE: If you’re newlywed, you can still be considered if you recently transitioned from being a single dad.)
Email me: info [at] dareeallen [dot] net and let’s get this party started.