Tuesday, November 20, 2012

I was asked by my nephew what made my writing different from all the other black writers out there. My answer was both simple and complex at the same time.

I told him that my writing was a fusion of Literary Urban Fiction. He looked at me like I was speaking a foreign language. He knew what Urban Fiction was, but literary sounded kind of white to him.

So I broke it down even further. I write Urban Fiction stories about black folks with jobs. He looked at me like I was talking crazy. You see, my nephew is a street dude. His life is filled with the stuff that most Urban Fiction writers and gangster rappers talk about.

"Life in the hood ain't about dudes with jobs," he said.

I laughed and looked him in the eye. "Where do I live?" I asked him.

He laughed and said you live right here in the hood, so you should know better..."

He started to laugh. The realization came to him that not only did I live in the hood, but I had been on the same job for over twenty years. And like most people in the hood I wasn't born with the job.

What I was trying to make him understand was that when many people think hood or Urban Fiction they think of a certain lifestyle of certain people. They tend to forget about the majority of people who live in the hood. We may break some of the drug, gambling and vice laws; but for the most part we are law abiding citizens who go to work. Well I tell those stories.

My first book, "God Helps Those...by Alan Cramer was written seven years ago. I called my self the New Voice of Urban Fiction back then. Not realizing at the time that I was starting something new. Something I now call Literary Urban Fiction.

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