Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Shameless MyBrownBaby Self-Promotion: "Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man"



I got the call out of the blue, which is usually how my blessings come: An editor who published “The Vow,” the novel I wrote with Essence editor-in-chief Angela Burt-Murray and funny girl/writer extraordinaire Mitzi Miller of Mitzi Moments, wanted to know if I’d be interested in writing a relationship book with comedian Steve Harvey.

Uh—yeah!

There was a catch, though: I had to write that bad boy by August 1 2008, which meant I’d have only two months to help Steve formulate his ideas, figure out the book’s flow, and write it in a way that stayed true to his intentions, but was palatable enough for us women to read, listen to, and learn from. It was a tough mission, but mama needed the basement reno—saying “no” to this one wasn’t an option. Thus, our collaboration on his new book, "Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man."

Steve and I made quick work of getting his thoughts down on paper; I’d show up to his office or his home, lap top and mini digital recorder in hand, and type any and everything he had to say about love and relationships—the good, the bad, the ugly, the utterly crazy. One day, he’d be telling me and any woman within the sound of his voice that men simply do not love like women do. The next, he’d be hipping us to the games men play, and how to tell if dude is looking for a serious relationship or a bed warmer. Or why men cheat. Or what it is that men really want from their mates. And, for the single women, how to get the ring.

There were plenty of funny moments; you’ll laugh out loud at his story about the time he and his father-in-law posted up the boyfriend of one of his daughters on the couch and asked him what his plans were for Steve’s daughter. When the boy said, “nothing, we’re just kickin’ it,” well, let’s just say it wasn’t pretty. "I'll tell you what," Steve said. "Let's call my daughter in here and see how she feels about being the kicked one," he told the boy. You’ll fall out, too, at his hilarious list of ways to tell if you’re nothing but a “plaything,” and smile at all the warm stories he tells about his parents’ marriage, his early days as a comedian, and how he fell in love with his wife, Marjorie.

But understand, as funny as Steve is—there were days when I’d walk out of that office feeling like my stomach was going to fall out of my body, I’d laughed so hard—this is not a humor book. Steve was quite adamant that “Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man” be serious business, because relationships are serious business; he really is passionate about helping women understand the very simple creature that is a man. His mantra, which he’d make me, his The Steve Harvey Morning Show co-host Shirley Strawberry, and his marketing director Elvira Guzman repeat practically every day was this: “Men are very simple creatures.” If you remember that, he reminded us over and over again, this relationship stuff won’t be so complicated.

It was, for sure, an eye-opening, empowering experience; on more than a few occasions, I’d leave his office shaking my head in wonder, like, “well damn, why didn’t I know that about my man?” I tell you, he had me looking all kinds of sideways at Nick—and thinking about all the things I needed to work on to help strengthen our relationship and myself as a loving partner.

I hope that “Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man” does the same for your relationship, whether you’re single and looking, dating and hoping for more, or in a marriage that could use a little pick-me-up. You can pick up the book at any local bookstore, order it online (yesterday, it climbed as high as #20 on Amazon!), go to one of his many book signing (for my ATL folk, he'll be in town in the Barnes and Noble in Buckhead on February 3, and at the Borders in Lithonia on February 9), or tune into Steve’s syndicated morning show to hear how you can win an autographed copy.

Enjoy!



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16 comments:

  1. Denene~Steve Harvey has been one of my favorite funny guys!

    I'm so gonna buy one just because I've enjoyed reading your blog AND a little cause of STeve :)

    Is he coming out to Hawaii? :)

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  2. Are you kidding me??? See! This is why I say I want to be like you when I grow up! I am so proud to say I know you! Congratulations!!! You are truly an inspiration!

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  3. I don't get Steve in my area, but thanks to your blog, I'm heading over to Amazon to get it.

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  4. Wow Denene--congratulations on what sounds like a great book! It sounds funny (and useful!)--I will check it out!

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  5. If you'd like to get your book autographed, Steve is doing a mini book tour in a few states (sorry, Rambler--it doesn't look like he'll be in Hawaii *sad face*). Click on the link below to see if he'll be near you:

    http://www.eurweb.com/story/eur50399.cfm

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  6. I was listening to him talk about the book on his morning radio show just this morning. I am getting my copy!

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  7. OMG! Girl, you are the freakin bomb! All this time I've been listening to him pub this book and I had no idea. What time is he going to be in Buckhead next Tuesday?

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  8. Holy freaking cow Denene ~ that is so awesome! And your description of the book alone is going to make everyone want to buy it immediately. Congratulations on a job well done. :)

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  9. i listen to steve almost every morning and always hear him talking about that book. i had no idea that you were behind it!! you're such a superstar. ;) girl, if i were an envious chick, i'd envy you, but i'm not so i just admire yo skills... haha...

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  10. Congrats! thats a great look right there.

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  11. Firstly, CONGRATS! You are SOOO my PosterWoman!!

    Secondly, I'd like to point out that laughing 'till your stomach hurts counts as abdominal exercise, so KUDOS to you for not neglecting your body while you work :)

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  12. I'm excited about reading this book. I heard about your work on this book a minute ago and I read about it in Jet last week. I read your first relationship book like three times, and it was the bomb (do people still say that?) but I told you that already. :) So I know this one will be all that as well. Congratulations on yet another great accomplishment.

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  13. Now I thought that was YOU! Lol. I saw the book on Black Expressions and thought, "Hey, that's Denene!!", but wasn't sure because they have your last name spelled with one "L" instead of two.

    Now that I know it IS you I'll have to check it out =)

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  14. Congrats on the new book! Looking forward to getting my autographed copy - smiles!

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