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If you happen to meet Chunichi, she's not your ordinary street lit author. The 5'4 pint sized Nikki Turner protťgť is the next bombshell taking over street lit with her hair raising, Street Chronicles: Girls in the Game and holding nothing back.
We caught the "Urban Diva" nestled within the Harlem gates of the Urban Books booth at the Harlem Book Fair.
She had a real long jet black ponytail, dark Chloeí shades on and hardly recognizable, but as soon as she held up her new novel and took the sunglasses off, I immediately matched the author with the book from past media photos I have seen on the net minus captions.
Maybe its because she's mysterious or her name is poly-syllabic and kind of difficult to remember, but if you break her name down as "chu-NEE-she", you might as well say something to the effect, "It's about to get chu-NEE-she in here".
That's right; add her name to the dictionary as the definition of a new form of street lit. BOLD, BRAZEN, BEAUTIFUL and TALENT TO MATCH, it's Chunichi's time to shine, but make no mistake about it, getting to her bestselling status was not a pretty journey...
Chunichi was born and raised in Alabama. Raised by her mother and step-father, her life was somewhat sheltered. The days she attended St. James Catholic School, during her primary years, and Dunbar Magnet School of Performing Arts, during her junior high years, provided little insight to the life of the streets for this budding writer. It wasnít until her move to Virginia that she became intrigued with the glamour and glitz that the street life had to offer. Chunichi spent most of her teenage years in Virginia Beach with her mother. Although an honor student at the well noted, Kempsville High School, it was there she got her first taste of freedom. Now in public school and free of the strict walls of catholic school that she was so accustomed to, Chunichi bloomed. A popular girl in high school, heading the step team as well as the dance team, this stunning southern beauty quickly attracted the attention of many local young ballers who were eager to satisfy her desire for the spotlight and material things alike. As an ambitious young adult, Chunichi moved out on her own after graduating high school. Now conditioned to use the power of beauty, she almost expected men to shower her with gifts. As a Scorpio, sex appeal and seduction was second nature. It didnít take long for Chunichi to run into that one baller that took her to the next level. She instantly became caught up in the lifestyle of money, fast cars, designer clothes, and all of the adulation that came along with her elevated social status. However there was a major turn when she experienced the downside of the game. Virtually transforming from a sexy seductress diva to a gun toting Bonnie trained to fire; Chunichi had been introduced to a whole new world. It wasnít until Chunichi hit rock bottom, that she realized all of the money and notoriety that she acquired wasnít worth the stress and aggravation that came along with the game. Consequently, she decided to make a change in the way she was living. After leaving the fast life behind, Chunichi has returned to school to pursue her degree in Applied Science as a Registered Nurse. She has taken her life experiences as a good girl looking for a bad boy and produced an urban literary masterpiece with her debut novel, A Gangsterís Girl. Creating a series of Essence Best Sellers, Chunichi follows A Gangsterís Girl with itís sequel, Married to the Game, and newly released, The Naked Truth. Also releasing this year, Street Chronicles-Girls in the Game, Even Sinners have Souls, Gangster Girl- The Saga, and Return of a Gangster's Girl. Chunichi is destined for success and plans to use her real life experiences to pen novels that are sure to keep her work on the Best Sellerís lists.
When I asked Chunichi, what inspired her to bring street lit to the literary world with a style all her own and commanding respect on chart topping lists, she responds,
Prior to writing, I read a whole lot. After reading quite a few street lit books I noticed the tale of the drug dealer and girlfriend always portrayed the girlfriend simply as a chick that won her role because she pleased him the best sexually compared to all the other females in the hood. And usually the female sidekick got little respect and spent most of her time spending money. Well as a female that played the dope boyís girlfriend at the time, I knew that it was so different than it was displayed in these books. Therefore I felt I should write from the femaleís perspective and show the real to being that ride or die chick.
A role model for the young writers who's bringing style to the literary game we asked CHUNICHI all about her beauty, fashion, diet and exercise regimen and here's what our reigning literary starlet shared....
Oh boy! I wish I had some great secret I could share but I donít. I can, however, share what works for me. When it comes to beauty, Iím probably like every other woman. I call Fridays my "beauty day." This is the day I get my hair, nails, toes and waxing done. Once out of the month Iíll throw in a massage and facial and maybe a tan.
Now fashion, I could go on forever; but Iíll keep simple. Personally I have a shoe and bag fetish. I feel like your shoes, bag, and accessories say it all. You can spend a pretty penny on those items then top it off with a simple pair of skinny leg jeans and cute tank top and still look like a million bucks!
On to diet and exerciseÖ.. I must say I am the worse when it comes to either one of those. My husband is Jamaican so Iím constantly eating Caribbean cuisine; but when the summer hits and Iím taking those trips to Miami, LA, and Jamaica itís crunch time. So I hit the gym three times a week and cut out the carbs. But in the winter one shouldnít be surprised to find me pleasantly thickÖÖIn all the right places of course. (smile and wink)
Chunichi is working on various projects. She mentions,
Iím currently working on my next novel, California Connection. It introduces a new female on the block, California Diaz. So for my readers that loved Ceazia, in the Gangster Girl series; youíre going to love California. This winter readers can expect Return of a Gangsterís Girl, the final book to the series; The Gangster Girl Saga, a book combining A Gangster Girl, Married to the Game, and The Naked Truth; and on Christmas day, Even Sinners have Souls, a project that I am so very honored to be a part of. Itís the start of a new genre, not quite Christian fiction and not quite street lit. Letís just say its urban tales of deliverance. The title alone says it all.
You can find out more about Chunichi by visiting
www.myspace.com/chunichiwrites or www.urbanbooks.net
For booking, interviews and media requests, contact
Arvita Glenn at Urban Books 631-643-6828 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Chunichi dressed in green, the new it color of early fall.
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