Local author Alice Renee Beard will be sharing her writing ability with the community at the Kalamazoo Public Library on Wednesday, Feb. 22. “Recollections of a Fugitive” is a new book in the Walker’s Web Project series. The Kalamazoo Public Library is sponsoring this event, which will take place from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Renee explained that “Recollections of a Fugitive” is a type of historical fiction.
“The story is based off stories that I was told as a kid,” she said.
More specifically, however, “Walker’s Web” is a surreal and dramatic serial thriller, based on characters from the novel “Blood”, published and written in 2005 by Beard. “Recollections of a Fugitive,” which is the first book to be released in the “Walker’s Web” series, is a story stemming back as far as the 1800s.
The book tells the story of a slave whose spirit after living in the harshest world of antisocialism, manages to escape though emotionally contaminated. Nicknamed Garth, the main character’s sickened spirit after death, lives on into the twenty-first century, creeping into the lives of his descendants and other unsuspecting, innocent souls and propagating generations who thrive on venomous, unrighteous and contemptible acts.
“Garth, the young man in the story, is void of feelings. I like to say that he is the earliest known American gangster,” Beard said. “The purpose of the story of Walker’s Web is to make readers feel what the character feels. I want readers to get into his state of mind in order to get a sense of what he was going through. The book tends to be emotionally charged.”
Beard’s agent and editor, Mykell Abu, explained that the book was written in two languages, perfect English and ebonics.
“Ebonics essentially refers to the language of someone who is descended from an enslaved African American. The story is set in the 1800s, and is told in the way that the character, Garth, would have spoke during that time,” Abu said.
Beard said that she is excited about the book premiere that is being held at Kalamazoo Public Library later this month.
“The premiere will be my fifteen minutes of fame, and if I somehow receive more than my fifteen minutes of fame from this, I’ll take it and thank my supporters,” Beard said.
The book premiere will include theatrical dramatizations of the book, as well as showcase some professional and emerging artists from the area.
“An opening act will help bring the audience into the book reading and set the scene for the night,” Beard said.
“I am grateful for my community’s support and how God has seen me through this journey. I am out of my comfort zone with this project, but I love it,” Beard said, adding that she plans to put out many more books in the future.
Beard said that others will benefit from this reading by being able to comprehend and understand another person, specifically the character in “Recollections of a Fugitive.”
“It’s an opportunity to understand another person. If you’re going to find a little bit of Garth in you, then you’re not going to want that little bit of Garth to remain in you for long. The story is about character flaws and understanding the flaws that others may have,” Beard said.
Abu added that the book premiere will allow young authors to talk to a local author about the process and hard work involved in writing and publishing a book.
Beard said that she likes to approach writing as if she were cooking a good meal.
“Just like with making a good meal, I research, gather materials, and cross-check my information to write a good story,” she said.
Beard said she hopes that she will have the chance to share her thoughts on writing with others who are interested at her upcoming book premiere.