Treasue E. Blue
Urban Book Source
Often compared to the legendary Donald Goines, Treasure E. Blue has laid the brickwork for an undeniable great reign. A product of the unforgiving streets of Harlem, Treasure has lived through many tales, and promises not to stop writing until they are all told. Unlike many children of the ghetto, Treasure became wise of the one road ending that the streets held for its victims, and decided to take control of his destiny, by enrolling in the military at the age of 17.
While serving his country, Blue, developed an insatiable appetite for literature, reading over 2000 novels while in the military alone. After his service, Treasure joined the New York City Fire Department, eventually working his way up, becoming a Supervising Fire Inspector in the Bronx at the time of his resignation.
Still plagued by many of the painful memories from his youth, Treasure decided to release his torment on paper, penning one of the most respected Urban fiction novels to date, Harlem Girl Lost. Although Treasure has been said to have one of the most shocking and controversial styles, he hopes his readers can gain hope with his no holds bar approach.
UBS: People have dubbed you the reincarnated Donald Goines. How do you feel about this comparison?
Treasure: That to me, is the ultimate compliment anyone can bestow upon someone. Me, as well as millions of others, grew up reading Mr. Goines’ masterful literary works of art and were mesmerized and ushered into his world with sheer awe. I for one grew up not only relating to most of his characters, but also seeing much of it up close and personal within my own home and community. His message was always clear and precise—YOU PLAY, YOU PAY!
UBS: What motivated you to start writing?
Treasure: Pain, pure and simple. As mentioned before, I’ve experienced and been witness to many hardships at the expense of growing up in a dysfunctional household. As a result, I harbored and kept many ill emotions within, unable to express them in a normal way, thus becoming an emotional time bomb as a kid and much of my adulthood. Then I discovered reading, and that became my solace, taking me out of my thoughts, liberating me even if it was for only a couple of hours. Years later, when the smoke cleared, I still felt trapped and decided to confront my demons on paper.
UBS: We know you are an avid reader. Who are your favorite authors?
Treasure: Herman Hess, Donald Goines, James Baldwin, George Orwell, Virginia Wolff, Maya Angelou, and Alex Haley. But the list goes on. All these writer I’ve mentioned have their own voice, and most importantly they wrote with honesty, straight from the heart, which is the only way I’d have it.
UBS: You just announced to the UBS forum that you signed to Random House. Congrats! What can we expect next from you? And how did this transpire?
Treasure: Well, once I decided I wanted to be a writer, which was three years ago, I knew I’d have to give up the three things I loved the most, excluding my kids, my job, drugs and alcohol, and relationships. Then I dedicated everything towards my goal and developed a plan. I don’t want to sound arrogant, but I expected all this to happen, it had to, down to what agent I would have (Tracy Sherrod) whom I met months before my book even came out. I introduced myself and told her I would stay in contact with her to rep me for a publishing deal. Eighteen months, and over 80,000 books, sold independently, later, she put me in a bidding with all the majors, but Random House, who must have really wanted me basically said, “We want him, how much?” We came to an agreement for a three-book deal for Harlem Girl Lost, A Street Girl Named Desire, and one more, and the rest is history.
UBS: Why did you choose to sign with a major publisher after being with Peaceful Storm?
Treasure: Well, being independent is exactly that, you independently answer to no one but yourself, you make a much, much higher profit marginally, and most importantly, you have control, but however popular or great my novel is, I’m very limited distribution wise, and popular mostly in the Eastern Region of the United States. Partnering with a leviathan such as Random House, I’m able to reach places I would not normally be able to reach. It’s like deciding if you want to be a big fish in a small pond, or little fish in a large ocean.
UBS: Can you tell us a little about your new novel?
Treasure: Oh my God! A Street Girl Named Desire is a monster; it’s a beast! It’s gonna take this game in an entirely different direction. That’s all I’m gonna say about it for now.
UBS: What do you hope your readers will take from your novel?
Treasure: HOPE. I’m happy to say from the response I’ve been receiving over Harlem Girl Lost, I’ve touched many people by being honest and open about many issues some are afraid to expose. The proof is being asked to speak and lecture at the very places that I’ve been exposed to such as Group Homes, Alternative High Schools, Riker’s Island, Riker’s Island Academy, Drug Agencies, Men and Women Shelters, only because I’m no longer ashamed of the things I’ve been through and the places I’ve been.
UBS: With Street Fiction garnering a lot of attention, there are a lot of people who are bashing it. What would you say to them?
Treasure: Eff em, two times, real quick. You have to take a look at the people that are doing the hating to paint a clear picture. Black people were lynched at one point for even attempting to learn how to read, and low and behold, when black’s not only know how to read, we’re writing our own novels, then these so called Intellectual Negroes, as my man Brandon Mccullan calls them, persecute us for telling a story about where we’ve been and where we are from, and they can’t stand it, like they couldn’t stand rap over 30 years ago, because we are out selling them. They dismiss our work because it speaks about urban life in urban jargons, but take a look at the Pulitzer Prize novel A Color Purple, a novel praised all over the world. It reads and speaks the language of that time and that era for you to capture the essence of the story. Our novels do the same damn thing. Check your motives you HATERS!!!!!!!!!
UBS: Do you suffer from Writer’s Block? How do you get over it?
Treasure: Thus far, I never had it only because I don’t write from my head, I write from my heart.
UBS: What do you think of the Urban fiction trend?
Treasure: Come all, come many, and if you got a story to tell...tell it. They called rap a trend, but now it’s a lifestyle. NUFF SAID!
UBS: What advice do you have for an upcoming writer?
Treasure: Never write like someone else, use your own voice. The minute you do this you’ve already failed in my opinion. Remember that when it comes to writing novels, you are God, because you can write, create, and have the freedom to write how you want. There is no right or wrong way when it comes to this craft. Write from your heart and never from your head.
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