HMAAC is absolutely excited to present to you our second installment of the Get Lit: Author Series entitled Women 2 Women. Jouelzy, Jillian “JJ” Simmions, Candice D’Meza and Marvell M. Gales will openly discuss the inspirations behind their most recent pieces of literature. These extraordinary authors will be accompanied by the spoken-word of Kayenne Nebula and music courtesy of Lady BG. The aim of this platform is to return Houston’s love for literature by providing a space where local authors can gather along-side visual artist and poets. 

Participating Authors 2017

Vlogger/Blogger/Writer (The Root)

Jouelzy is an African American woman blogger, vlogger, and author. Founder of the #SmartBrownGirl movement she celebrates women of color throughout the African Diaspora, curating discussions on Black America, politics, culture, African politics and the expanding experience of being a Black woman in America and Europe. Her main outlet, YouTube, is where you can find weekly videos with witty commentary on current cultural topics that impact women of color, advocating for the smart brown girl so they too can advocate for all smart brown girls.

Jillian Simmons
"Without Bruises: A Journey to Hope, Help, and Healing"
Print Length | 168 pages
Publisher | CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (October 16, 2016)

JJ knows what it means to have everything – a loving family, great friends, and an amazing, high profile job. She also knows what it means to nearly lose it all. Her voice hit the airwaves daily, entertaining listeners throughout the city, yet her personal life was crumbling before her eyes. By the time she had made her way through an abusive relationship, she no longer recognized the woman in the mirror. On the brink of losing her mind, her soul and her spirit, her life was hanging on by a thread. "Without Bruises" takes readers on JJ’s turbulent journey through a relationship with a sociopath, and sheds light on the often missed signs of emotional and mental abuse. In a grueling, year-long battle with depression and with the help of family, friends and a life-changing therapist, JJ rises from the ashes better than before. She bounces back with a stronger sense of self, purpose, and power, and it is her mission to share a message of hope with the world. Without Bruises is a must read for anyone questioning the power dynamic in their relationship. It gives guidance and direction to those who have been bruised and broken at the hands of another person, and it offers compassion and understanding to those who love someone currently being abused.

Candice D’Meza
"Birth of an Alchemist"
Print Length | 142 pages
Publisher | CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (January 27, 2017)

A curated collection of prose taken directly from Candice D'Meza's private diaries, "Birth of an Alchemist" is a raw, unfiltered, unedited look into the dark and light of one woman's life. In it, the author explores her personal experiences with growth, depression, heartbreak, suicide, and hope. Each entry is dated, providing a personal time-stamp showing how growth is not linear or neat, but messy and cyclical. If alchemy is the magical transformation of one element into another, clearly D'Meza is an alchemist who has transformed her personal pain into the readable work of art that is Birth of an Alchemist.

Marvell Martrice Gales
"Inner Me"
Print Length | 66 pages
Publisher | CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (October 8, 2016)

This book is to encourage the reader to learn as well as to know who the creator is first and to understand why we were created with a purpose that is geared for the individuals to fulfill here while on earth. It takes us to a spiritual place deep down in the most inner part of the temple (body) in search of who we are really supposed to be. It helps us to look in the mirror, conduct self that evaluations and seek a strong admiration to be the very best person(s) that God desires for us all to be.