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An author's reflection. Go beyond.

February 12, 2017.

Things truly get real.

After weeks of trials and tribulations, things come to fruition at the Starbucks located on Howell Mill Road in Atlanta, GA. I'm the host of my inaugural book-signing in support of my debut, Deeper than your deepest sleep: thoughts on love with Joseph Snorton. The book is a poetic take on love based on conversation with extended family who I did not know existed, looking through the lenses of family, friends, loved ones, those no longer around (for a myriad of reasons), self-reflection, and a conversation with a higher authority and entity.

It's an exciting time as a number of friends and colleagues come out to lend support, and anyone who does a book-signing can speak to how energizing it is to have people attend; whether it's 5 or 50 people, it's a reminder of people recognizing your dedication to the craft and your continued growth, along with seeing where they (or their favorite readers) can connect with the work you are doing.

Now, it's not always as smooth as silk.

There's a few things that don't always go according to plan (including losing an entire manuscript), but as they say, delays don't mean defeat. Success does not happen overnight, so at any level big or small, there's always a reason to celebrate.

A second book, 9 stories of faith: volume 1, is the next step in the writing process. It's an in-depth conversation with our colleagues across the faith community (in this 2018 release, Christianity, Hinduism, and Islam), as they share their biggest daily challenges, not just the challenge of the moment. As anyone can attest, having a physical or mental health challenge, life after the hurdles of incarceration or the passing/transition/death of a family member, and others difficulties, there can be many proverbial rivers to cross and chasms to jump over. However, through their faith, application of best practices in health and wellness, their support network (of family, friends, and loved ones), and the shift in their perspective, they do more than keep things together; they are able to live some truly powerful and positive lives, truly being difference-makers for their families, communities, and more.

Two books in 2 years does not happen every day. That accomplishment is one to be encouraged about, and that does not even include book festival appearances including (but not limited to) the Mississippi Book Festival (2017-20), the East of the River Book Festival in Washington DC (2018), the Bluffton Book Festival (2018), the African-American Family Book Expo in Detroit (2019), and other signings and related engagements.

Yes, that's pretty sound. However, there's more on the horizon, and it's coming in plain view.

2019 is the start of a new series, The Author's Mixtape. I'm not on the turntables (just yet), but I'm definitely on the microphone, taking elements of the mixtape culture to the audiobook setting. The first volume (Organic musings from HTooOh) is one for the creatives as nothing (and I do mean NOTHING) is pre-written.

Let me emphasize this; nothing is pre-written.

In a 2 hour studio session last August thanks to 3rd Level EMG, the owner's daughters came up with 20 possible topics (some of the selected ones range from healthcare, to what gives you peace, and even looking at the political landscape among other topics); we randomly pull and grab the bag, and in a single studio session, we creatively and organically come up with a 7-track audiobook (2 with music and 5 spoken word pieces).

Everything. Pretty powerful.

And then comes the newly released volume 2 (Beyond the holi-daze. Beyond history.).

It takes the format to the next level as again, in a 2 hour studio session, we come up with 8 tracks, expanding on the experience. There's more vocals (you'll have to hear it to truly grasp and believe it), spoken-word, and even the discovery of a long, lost tribe. Again, building on the organic and creative themes that keep things entertaining, engaging, humorous, sincere, substantive, and a takeaway that is beyond unique.

Yes, the journey is full of hours of entertainment, but it's one that is taking me to places and spaces I'd never imagine that would happen to an older young-star from Jersey based in the heart of the Southeast just making his way and then some. And that includes this Saturday, February 22nd, from 2-4pm at the Winder Public Library (Winder, GA) for my next book-signing.

From the large urban areas to intimate spaces and places around the way, as I enter my next year of writing, I'm sincerely thankful and grateful for the support received along the way.

And there's more in store. As far as I am traveling, there's more ground to cover, topics and interests to write about, and more connections to be made.

I'll pause, then keep going.

And then, I'll go beyond...

Notes: to keep up with book-signings, festivals, and related events, visit the website (click HERE). You may add Author Andrew Snorton (Facebook), @authorasnorton (on Instagram and Twitter), Author ASnorton (YouTube), and email - both books are available on Amazon and select bookstores, and both audiobooks are available on your favorite platforms (thank you to Canis Major Digital).

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