S. J. Shanklin


S J Shanklin lives in Atlanta Georgia and currently works in retail.
Writing is her passion and release. When not writing, she helps raise her granddaughter who is the inspiration for much of the character Jaylene Johnson.
Ms. Shanklin is currently working on her second novel.

Smashwords Interview

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
"I grew up in Cleveland Ohio. The concept for "Shades of Brown" was introduced to me by a teacher in Junior High. Our school was about to be integrated, Mr. M. used the white paper comparison to illustrate the point that we as Caucasian students were not truly white, compared to the white paper we placed our hands upon. Mr. M. helped make the transition easier by pointing out that we were a lighter shade of brown, not white. I have lived my life looking at people and found this concept to be true with few exceptions.

The decision to introduce this concept through the eyes of a young girl was prompted by observations and experiences of both my daughter and granddaughter. As children of mixed race they sought a more comfortable place for themselves. I felt compelled to bring the concept that we as humans are more alike than different, as a way to help other children find a comfortable place. Consequently, this book is dedicated to all "Brown Babies."
When did you first start writing?
I started writing in my head as a child. Putting pen to paper took longer. I started writing seriously about eight years ago.
Read more of this interview.

Where to find S. J. Shanklin online


Shades of Brown
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 38,930. Language: English. Published: November 19, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Social Issues
(5.00 from 2 reviews)
“Mom, have you ever noticed that black people aren't really black and white people aren't really white? Have you ever noticed that people are really brown, many different shades of brown? I think the world would be better off if more people saw brown shades, instead of black and white."Jaylene Johnson’s profound observation is about to change her young life in many unexpected ways.

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