I decided to take the month of March as a sort of introduction to All Authors. That is to say, I want you to meet each member that composes the All Authors P&P family. Today my guest is Indie Author, Columnist and Radio Blog Author Interviewer, Mr. Beem Weeks.
Beem Weeks is the 40-something-year-old indie author of several short stories, poems, essays, and the historical fiction/coming-of-age novel Jazz Baby. A divorced father of two grown children, Beem has lived in Florida and Georgia, and is currently calling Michigan home. Among his literary influences he counts Daniel Woodrell, Barbara Kingsolver, and Stephen Geez. He’s been writing since childhood, having co-authored a play he saw performed by and for classmates and staff during his time in fifth grade. As a teenager and young adult, Beem wrote concert and record reviews for a small publication. Journalism had been his intended field from an early age, but all that changed with the publication of a short story that eventually led to his first novel, Jazz Baby. Beem enjoys indie films, loud music, and a well-told story. His latest release is a short story collection entitled Slivers of Life. He is currently hard at work on his second novel—though that’s a slow-go at times.
I asked Beem:
What is it like to be part of the All Authors Family?
The best part of All Authors is the encouragement that is so readily shared among the family. Everybody here loves to write. Without that support and encouragement from the All Authors family, the very act of writing could become quite a frustrating endeavor. It’s nice knowing there are other writers in our corner, ready to offer advice and support.
You can connect with Beem at these places:
Or buy his books, here:
Here is an excerpt of his novel, “Jazz Baby”.
Billy Blood moved like shirtless mortal sin through Aunt Frannie’s backyard garden, working hard at that nub of a stump he intended on having gone long before suppertime. Above his head the sky had gone black with the bruise of thick angry clouds that promised cool respite from that sticky heat clinging to my skin like an old set of long johns.
I watched from the kitchen window, taking care not to be seen. Lord only knows all the foolish ideas he’d string together after catching me spying.
’Cept I had a few ideas of my own needed expressing.
“What time does he take lunch?” I dropped onto a chair at the breakfast table and fixed on the colored girl.
Suspicion, like those storm clouds, gathered in Neesie’s dark eyes. “What you want with him? Ain’t good for nothin’ but trouble.”
True enough. Everybody in Rayford knew that much about Billy.
But I still needed him.
“You mind yours and I’ll mind mine,” I said, spreading the morning pa-per across the table.
Neesie dipped into the laundry room, fell away from my sight long enough to let me have a better gawk at that Choctaw boy.
He’ll do it, I convinced myself, creeping through the back door. Offer the boy a dollar and he’ll jump at my plan.
I crossed the yard without any real sense of what I might actually say to convince him to see things my way. I mean, suppose he expected something that costs more than a dollar? Something intimate, personal.
The thwack of the ax echoed off the back of the house. Billy raised it again and slammed it hard against that stubborn stump like he and it had gone round and round in some long-standing feud not likely to see a conclusion anytime soon.
I stayed back a good piece, avoiding the splintering wood raining down on the area closest to Billy. “Where’s that goat?” I asked, scanning the azaleas for movement.
Billy stopped mid-chop and fixed me with a look meant to run me off. “Ain’t got time to chatter, Teegarten.”
“Wanna earn a dollar?”
That got his attention.
He tossed the ax aside and fished a handkerchief from his hip pocket. “Doing what?” he asked, wiping at his forehead.
I moved in closer, just to show I meant this to be our secret. “Go tell Addison Markley I need a word with her.”
Billy wanted more than a dollar for what I was asking. I could tell by the way his eyes dropped to my legs—bare beneath a new lemon-yellow sundress—and did a slow sashay up the length of my body, settling on the small swell of my breasts.
“Tell her yourself,” he said, snatching hold on his ax again. “I have work to do.”
“It’s too far to walk,” I complained. “Besides, it won’t take you but a few minutes to drive over.”
Billy spun on me like maybe he’d got confused over which way the stump went. “And suppose her daddy’s there. You think I wanna catch a bullet over his stupid daughter ain’t got sense to know she’s a girl?”
“He won’t be there.” I lied, but New Orleans counted on my meeting with Addie. “He’ll be out at his still.”
“Can you guarantee that?”
I couldn’t, even though my nodding head claimed I could.
Sweat shined his upper lip like it meant to water a dark mustache—if only the Injun had the wherewithal to actually grow one.
Thank you for visiting and do not miss out on the opportunity to connect with Author Beem Weeks, a wonderful person and writer.