Set in the new reigning hub of African-American drama – suburban Atlanta – it explores the psyche of a man whose desperate yearning for superstardom renders him straight-up certifiable. It depicts the hardcore competitiveness of professional football alongside the cut-throat battle for corporate success. But in this game, only one player can win.
Gerald Alexander had only two dreams, to play professional football in the NFL and to make the cover of Sports Illustrated. When the former became a reality it was short-lived due to a serious injury. And just like that, all the fame, fortune, parties, and women… gone. On the contrary, his best friend since childhood, Marcus Stone, was on top of the world – a successful business, a beautiful wife, and a fat bank account…he seemed to have it all.
Being a supportive friend, Marcus offers Gerald a job hoping Gerald would have a positive impact on his company. But when jealousy and murder come between them, which one will fall? Could Gerald be so callous that he’d set his best friend up? Is Marcus even capable of unleashing his own wrath?
They solved the riddle. Can you?
Brenda and Coach Daniels hosted a Christmas party mid-December and all were invited. Terrell didn’t like hanging out with Fallon’s people, they acted too peculiar around each other for his taste, but he made an exception after Fallon told him she was pregnant.
She didn’t actually tell him she was pregnant, it was more like him noticing the changes she was going through – her behavior, eating habits and weight gain gave her secret away. She told him about the positive pregnancy test, but convinced him she was only waiting to find out for certain from her gynecologist because she didn’t want to cause any false alarms.
Terrell was excited and couldn’t wait to share their news with everyone, but at the last minute Fallon convinced him to wait until after the holidays. She knew how much the news would hurt Dionne who appeared to be in great spirits at the party.
Out of nowhere, Dionne steals the spotlight and makes an over-the-top announcement. Using a butter knife to tap on her glass of water, Dionne got everyone’s attention and spoke in one of her snottier vernaculars she saves for auspicious occasions such as this, “Everyone, everyone, can I have your attention. My husband Marcus and I have some wonderful news we would like to share with you.”
Brenda gave a look that said she didn’t appreciate Dionne taking over her Christmas party, especially without warning the hostess, but she let it go. Being around Dionne was like walking on egg shells. Everyone treated her with kid gloves for the sake of her health.
While Marcus remained seated, Dionne stood up and put one hand on his shoulder striking a distinguished pose as if they were royalty and proudly announced, “The love of my life, Marcus, has been chosen as one of this year’s prestigious Power 30 Under 30. For those of you who don’t know what that is…”
Marcus interrupts, “Baby, I think even if anybody here has never heard of the award, they can imagine from its name what it represents,” Marcus light-heartedly laughs.
Dionne proceeds to lead the crowd in applause. Terrell applauds, but isn’t too happy. Why does everyone always let Dionne steal the scene whenever she wants to throw their accomplishments in other people’s faces? They’re not the only ones living happy, successful lives.
Fallon has had Terrell’s nose wide open since the beginning of their relationship, but this time he wasn’t about to obey her commands. If Dionne can share their good news, so could he. As the applause died down, Terrell stands up and makes an announcement of his own, “Everyone, Fallon and I also bring good news. We’re expecting a baby! She’s three months pregnant!”
Most guests were genuinely happy for the couple. Dionne pretended to be thrilled. Brenda pretended to be surprised. Gerald immediately did the math in his head.
Never has there been a time in Bridgett Renay’s life where she’s laughed harder and played more vigorously while remaining self-assured…all thanks to the power of the written word. Everything she’s done in life has led to this moment. From both an undergraduate and graduate degrees to twenty-four years of service as a Navy Reservist tells the story of a journey that took her to faraway places, introduced her to intoxicating people, and shaped the way she views the world and her place in it. What better time to pen the tales that dances inside her head.
Get to know the author:
As a female author, your book is about the relationship of two males. How were you able to pen a story about two males?
The entire experience of penning a novel was all new to me so I wrote the story that was in my head believing that was the only way to write. And I still believe that to be true today. It’s like when a foreigner moves to America. They find success much faster than the average American because they’re not expecting to fail. They know this is the land of opportunity and there’s a lot of success to be found but because they don’t know all the rules, they just put themselves out there and do what feels right. My focus was on following my dreams and in my dreams I make my own rules. That’s also one of the great advantageous about being an indie writer – we have the ability to change the rules and set new trends in the publishing industry.
What connection does your life has to this story?
At first I didn’t think I had a connection to the story. But when I thought more about it I realized that was probably because it is about the friendship of two males. But there is a story behind every story. Corporate Thugs is about making bad decisions despite good intentions and allowing yourself to be distracted by menial things. Marcus remained undistracted while Gerald allowed every distraction thrown his way to overwhelm his life. I used to be that person. I used to think that I needed to involve myself with everything that was thrown in my direction. It wasn’t until I realized that I don’t have to answer every call, address every situation, explain every one of my actions and simply take control of my life that I found peace of mind. And now that I have that peace of mind I can promise you that I will never allow anyone to take it away from me because I didn’t like who I used to be. I don’t want to feel like my old self ever again.
We can get a feel of the star players from the synopsis, but tell us about the supporting cast.
I have three major supporting characters that steal scenes as if they were the star players. Slink is the cunning degenerate who wreaks sheer havoc because he can’t handle seeing Black men succeed. Fallon is the shameless seductress who gets more than she’s bargained for after taking her turn with every potential baller in sight. And then there’s Dionne, she’s the amateur socialite one generation out of the projects hell bent on living the glamorous life and would crush anyone standing in her way.
What lessons could be taken from reading this book?
My synopsis starts off by asking “What’s the first sign that lets you know you’re dealing with a sociopath?” Well, the lesson that could be taken from reading Corporate Thugs is that people stick around too long to wait for something to happen. When someone shows you the first sign that they’re a sociopath…RUN. What’s the old saying “People come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime”. You have to be able to determine the purpose of everyone who comes into your life and be willing to let some of them go. And you don’t have to obligate yourself to explain why. Just let them go.
What were your goals for this book, and how well do you feel you achieved them?
The goal for this book was to fulfill a childhood dream of being a part of the literary world. Also, to write something people not only enjoy reading, but something they can learn from. According to my reviews, I believe I have accomplished just that. People are not just praising my writing style, but the lessons learned within the writing as well. For me to be able to give that to the literary world is definitely an achievement I can be proud of.
How has writing changed your life?
It’s changed my life in a few ways. I live and breathe it now. Before I began the publishing process, I could always be described as being introverted. I can no longer say that. It’s like I’ve found my voice and I want everyone to hear it. And now that I do have a voice people listen to I use it to help others. I have been so blessed with so many things, so many opportunities that I want to pass all of my knowledge of living a happy, comfortable life to future generations so they can do it in their youth. They shouldn’t have to wait until their late thirties to discover what they can be and how much they can have.
What other aurhorpreneurial projects are you working on at present time?
I have two projects I’m working on – a book tour and my next novel.
My book tour, Sacred vs. Scandalous, is a partnership between myself and a dear friend who also happens to be a published author, Sonya Cato-Howard. Together we tour various venues to not only talk about our books, but to inspire people to pen their own stories that change lives and leave legacies. My message focuses on the rewards of living life #Undistracted and Sonya’s focus is to lead people on the Pathway to Freedom.
My next novel, LLP – Lust, Lies & Propositions, is due fall 2015 and it’s about the frustrations of being Black in Corporate America wrapped in a love story where a brassy young African-American woman has to choose between love or power.
Find the author:
Link to book