Monday, May 2, 2011

Be Careful What You See and Say!

Snitch by Booker T. Mattison sheds light on the harsh realities of life.

It is the story of Andre Bolden, a young man whose life is turned upside down by errors in judgment and the price that the code of the streets says he must pay.

In his quest to regain control of his life Andre will be pulled in many directions. His chosen avenues to travel for answers, some may consider extreme. To Andre they become the tools that will help unearth deeply buried emotions. Unbeknownst to him his chosen path is also leading him toward discovering purpose.

Author Mattison goes beyond the expected story to shed light on issues of suicide, mental health, the offshoots of family dysfunction and religion. With amazing skill Booker creates a supporting cast who as important to this story as the protagonist. They are because it is through Andre’s reaction to and interaction with them that aids the reader in understanding who he is. Snitch is both intellectual and street-wise. It is also a work that readers from a wide-range of backgrounds can appreciate.

Conversation with the Author

It’s always my pleasure to curl up with a good book. It’s a greater pleasure when the opportunity to converse with the author to that good book, arises.

To be honest an interview with Booker Mattison is more like a quiet conversation with a friend. His humility and passion for his work is beyond inspiring. Most important, a conversation with Booker Mattison is an opportunity to share a bit of this stimulating writer with you. Please enjoy.

LUBF: How did Snitch come about?
BTM:  "My first thoughts for a second book did not sit well with my agent. What is now Snitch was a part of another work that came to the forefront."

LUBF: The code of the street in terms of snitching is a timeless one. My question becomes, why this story and why now?
BTM: "We’re facing a silent crisis that’s not getting enough attention. Other countries are prime examples of what lawlessness left to run amuck – what it does to lives. Add to that the blue wall of silence has entrenched the same code as that of the streets yet they expect citizens to do what they won’t."

LUBF: Do you feel that the scenarios inside of Snitch can be equated with the growing by bullying issue?
BTM: "Totally different issues, but in practice we know that snitching involves intimidation, therefore, to a degree they can be linked, but not convinced that these two issues are related."

LUBF: Andre, like many is a man of above average intellect, why is he settling for less in life?
BTM: "He has come to identify himself intrinsically with his failings. He believes himself to be unlovable. Because he does he takes responsibility for the things he wasn’t responsible for."

LUBF: On the other side of this literary coin we have Sandra who seems to have it all. What do you feel allowed her to get off track and join the ranks of the struggling?
BTM: "Sandra reminds me of young women raised in strong families, they are covered and protected, but in a sense it makes them more vulnerable to men like Andre.

LUBF: So do you believe that in giving her so much o one thing, her parents may have unintentionally set her up for failure:
BTM: "Sandra's parents giving what they did cannot be used as a reason for her inability to make sound decisions. What has become common in Western culture is childen going out to discover the world--it leaves them open to whatever. Statistics show that 98% of people who marry are not virgins; this includes those in the church." 

LUBF: It is said that a writer can reveal the nature of the protagonist through supporting characters. Was the entire supporting cast pre-planned or did some just fall into place?
BTM: "In my works I want to show what is in my background, strong AA males. 

LUBF: What do you want people to take away from Snitch –
BTM: When on tour with Unsigned Hype I visited many schools and libraries. When I asked attendees what they thought about snitches & snitching – the universal thought was that it’s a bad thing. I then asked if they would tell if the crime was committed against them or they family. The moment they personalized it, things changed.

LUBF: In terms of your writing, what is it to you?
BTM: "I consier my writing my daily bread. I write as the Lord gives."

Booker makes it very clear that he didn’t write Snitch to force others into telling. It was written in order to:
  • Fairly present both sides of the issue
  • To allow reader to personalize it in order to make decisions
  • For communities to come together for discussion
  • Hopefully open dialogue across the nation.
I hope you have enjoyed this interview as much as I did. To learn more about Booker and his works you can visit him on the web at:  Click HERE to view video trailer.

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