Behind the Book (The Ace of Diamonds): Chapters Forty-Eight, Forty-Nine, and Fifty

btbaceofdiam copy

Well, here we are, the last final edition of Behind the Book for The Ace of Diamonds. I hope you enjoyed the review of Book Three of The Diamond Collection just as much as I enjoyed reviewing it. It was an excellent review as I finalized thing for Black Diamonds, which will be available on July 4th.

Chapter Forty-Eight
1. I’ve been the clean-up man since he got back in this game. – This line spoken by King actually came from a quote by Young Buck I read in a magazine. He was discussing how he was bringing G-Unit back on top because his album, Buck the World, was actually selling thus making him the clean-up man (he even had a song called Clean Up Man on the album). I felt like King was a clean-up man, too and decided to use the phrase in this scene.
2. Coco bit her lip as she thought about giving in to him. Her concern wasn’t necessarily in the physical pain that came with losing her virginity, it was the aftermath. She had heard countless stories about girls who had gave it up only to become single again. She didn’t want to be one of them. – If you’ve ever seen Aretha Franklin’s video with Lauryn Hill, A Rose Is Still a Rose, then you know the synopsis involved a “good girl” losing her virginity only to be ditched for another chick. I think this is one of the fears girls/women have when it comes to making that decision of losing their virginity. The whole idea of “giving it up” only to be ditched. Since Coco is a virgin, I wanted this to be her concern other than the whole, “What if I get pregnant?” or “Will it hurt?”
3. Her right hand was busy putting the final edits on a design while the paper next to it was a rough outline of his grandfather’s homegoing service. – While planning my own father’s funeral, I had several rough outlines of the service before turning in the final one to the funeral home. I figured Carmen should at least have the same.

Chapter Forty-Nine
1. “We commit his body to the ground,” Minister Harrison was saying, “earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust. The Lord bless him and keep him, the Lord make His face to shine upon him.” – I had to research how to conduct funerals in order to get this quote. Believe me, this part wasn’t fun. I don’t like looking at caskets especially not at night. This line is from Lotus’ burial ceremony.
2. She took a deep breath and knelt down in front of Tricia’s tombstone. “Well, it’s not a secret that we weren’t the best of friends,” she told her. “I wouldn’t exactly say we were enemies, but we had our differences. For some reason, we never confronted each other about them. I don’t know if that was a good thing or a bad thing. What I do know is that I’m going to do everything in my power to make sure that your kids grow up to be successful. I know you’re proud of them and so am I. Without you, I wouldn’t have them. I guess that means I’m indebted to you.” Carmen placed the lily bouquet on the right side of the tombstone. “I know that I could never take you or Consuelo’s place. I don’t want to. I just want to make you proud,” she continued. – One of the things I regret about Book Two, Diamonds are Forever, is that there was never a scene where Carmen and Tricia had a conversation. I tried to make up for it in this book, but there were a slew of things that couldn’t be discussed because Tricia is dead. IY YI YI… too late to change it now.

Lil' Kim

Lil’ Kim

Chapter Fifty
1. “I’m not taking my foot off his neck. – This line spoken by Kane, is actually a Lil’ Kim quote. She said this in regards to Nicki Minaj during an interview with Angie Martinez. I loved it so much, not because it was in reference to Nicki, because I’m a fan of the Harajuku Barbie, but because I thought it was very ferocious.
2. I guess I better start calling the DreamGirlz now. – The DreamGirlz is actually two of my friends who were looking to start an event planning business. I’m putting them in my series as the event planners Carmen is using for her wedding. They will appear as characters in Book Five, Diamonds N’ Roses.
3. Blu glanced periodically out of the window as he was led down the streets of Copperton City. – This is the first line of the last scene in The Ace of Diamonds. In the original version of the book, this is the FIRST line in the FIRST scene of the entire book.
4. While the money was good, he wanted to get his hands on the black diamonds that he knew Jay possessed. – I dropped the words black diamonds here on purpose as a teaser for the fourth book, Black Diamonds.
5. “See nothing in the air but green dollar signs/ they say I can’t claim it, but from the looks, its mine/ I love the way it shines/ my ski mask, the next in line/ I steal with cats cryin’/ my eye is set on the diamond” – These six bars, part of a fictional rap song that Kristian is listening, too, are actually original rap lyrics written by me. It’s not a full-out song, but just something I wrote quickly for the scene

Behind the Book (The Ace of Diamonds): Chapters Forty-Five, Forty-Six, and Forty-Seven

btbaceofdiam copyChapter Forty-Five
1. Therefore, he headed towards the den were he knew Patricia was. He hadn’t seen her since they had returned to the house and he wanted to check up on her before he left. – This scene where Jay goes to check on Patricia is supposed to show readers that the two did have a cordial relationship at one point in time.
2. “Birds of a feather may flock together, but you can’t fly with the eagles if you’re hanging with the chickens. – In my father’s kitchen, years ago, there was a magnet which said the famous quote, “You can’t fly with the eagles if you’re hanging with the chickens.” I thought this quote would be a good response for Patricia since Jay said, “Birds of a feather flock together.”

Chapter Forty-Six
I didn’t want to skip this chapter, but after reading it, there wasn’t anything in it to really dissect. I will say that some of the things Kristian said to her mother in this chapter, I never could imagine saying to mine. All right, moving right along to Chapter Forty-Seven.


Teairra Mari

Chapter Forty-Seven
1. The park had always been her refuge and thankfully, it didn’t fail her this time. – In this scene, Kristian goes to the park after her argument with her mother. I chose the park because I knew Nicholas was going to be in this scene and in Book Two, Diamonds are Forever, it was a place they were always at together.
2. Perhaps our eyes need to be washed by our tears once in a while, so that we can see life with a clearer view again.”- This quote by Alex Tan, spoken by Nicholas, was inserted in this scene on purpose. I did a search on quotes about tears and crying and settled on this one. Nicholas uses this quote to announce his presence to Kristian.
3. Now, she was eighteen, appeared to be more mature, and had the body of Teairra Mari. – This is Nicholas’ description of Kristian. I guess this is the part where I say that I always see Teairra Mari in my head when I’m writing about Kristian.
4. Daddy always said, Carmen thought, whatever is done in darkness will come to light. – This thought of Carmen’s is a reference to the theme of Book One, Diamonds in the Rough.

Behind the Book (The Ace of Diamonds): Chapters Forty-Two, Forty-Three, and Forty-Four

btbaceofdiam copyChapter Forty-Two
I didn’t want to skip this chapter, but after reading it, there wasn’t anything in it to really dissect. Therefore I’ll be moving right along to Chapter Forty-Three.

Chapter Forty-Three
1. Her father couldn’t be dead. It wasn’t possible. – This was the easiest and the hardest scene to write. This is the part of the book where Carmen finds out her father has passed. It was the easiest to write because I know what it’s like to find out unexpectedly that a parent has passed. However, it was hard because I had to relive my own experience. Many of Carmen’s thoughts and feelings were my own, but not necessarily her actions.

Chapter Forty-Four
1. I have a relative who works in the mailroom, too. I think she’s like my father’s second cousin or some shit. Whenever I visit her, I get a badge with full access. Bitch doesn’t even know I’m using her.”- I inserted this line by Blu into the book purposely to explain how he was able to get into Flame so easily.
2. Shit, I didn’t even tell you about the phone call I got from Cesar. All of the bodies that were left at Blue Magic ended up at Jimenez Funeral Home. You know what that means? I get another chance to show Blu who he’s fuckin’ with. – These lines spoken by Jay end up again in Book Four, Black Diamonds during a flashback scene Carmen has.

Behind the Book (The Ace of Diamonds): Chapter Forty, Part V: The Aftermath, and Chapter Forty-One

btbaceofdiam copyChapter Forty
1. This chapter contains the only real love scene in the book. I honestly don’t believe in putting love scenes in books unless there is a purpose. While one may assume that this scene was simply a set-up to create a plot twist in the book, it wasn’t. When you read Black Diamonds, you will understand perfectly why a love scene had to be in this book.
2. “Don’t tell me you’re pregnant this time,” he joked. – This line is spoken by Jay and is a reference to the very last scene in Diamonds in the Rough when Jay and Carmen are arrested for the first time together.

Part V- The Aftermath
This section serves as the calm after the storm. The climax of the book is over and now it’s time to wrap all of this up…well, sort of, the book does have somewhat of a cliffhanger ending.

Chapter Forty-One
1. “My husband and another guy, I never knew his name.” – This line spoken by Carmen is in reference to the Triad agents who were responsible for getting her out her charge (of stealing the Pink Sunrise diamond) in Book One. The unknown man in this sentence will become a character in Book Seven: Dirty Red Diamonds.

Behind the Book (The Ace of Diamonds): Chapters Thirty-Seven, Thirty-Eight, and Thirty-Nine

btbaceofdiam copyChapter Thirty-Seven
1. Silvas set a mug of steaming hot green tea onto the table. As Jay picked up the cup, he pulled out a chair so that they could talk one on one. – I’m not sure if I’ve said this before, but Silvas is actually German. Most people would probably assume that he is Puerto Rican, but he’s not. He actually moved to Puerto Rico as a young boy. This information isn’t in any of the books yet, but it will be.
2. “Why should I be a king when I can be an ace?”- This line was intentionally put in this scene as a reference to the title of the book.

Chapter Thirty-Eight
1. From what King could see, there were two empty chairs on the opposite side of his grandfather’s bed. – Since I knew how the book was going to end, I wanted a lot of the major characters to each to have a final conversation with Lotus where he gave them words of advice. This was the start of those conversations.
2. Malik took a step away from his car so he had more room to maneuver. He walked closer to Kane so that they were standing toe to toe. “You did this same shit twenty-something years ago, Kane. I gave you what you wanted then. You don’t remember? We made a deal. I gave you everything you wanted to know about Jay. I led you right to him. – One of the most asked questions I got from my first book was why Malik wasn’t arrested. Here is the answer right here in this chapter.
3. When he looked at his daughter, he could see for himself that she was torn between two men. Each of them gave her what the other one didn’t. Carmen longed for the traditional household, which Kane gave her while Jay fed her desire of a quick thrill. – Now that I’m rereading this statement, this is almost an example of the difference between a life partner and a soulmate. In this case, Kane would be Carmen’s life partner because he gave Carmen the traditional household while Jay would be Carmen’s soulmate because there’s a strong connection there yet they never seem to make a relationship work.

Chapter Thirty-Nine
I didn’t want to skip this chapter, but after reading it, there wasn’t anything in it to really dissect. Therefore I’ll be moving right along to Chapter Forty in the next installment of Behind the Book.

Behind the Book (The Ace of Diamonds): Chapters Thirty-Four, Thirty-Five, and Thirty-Six

btbaceofdiam copyChapter Thirty-Four
1. Mom was the single word that read on the screen of Kristian’s Blackberry. – It’s funny how the phones they use change depending on which phone I have at the time. In most of the books, they had Blackberry phones, but starting in Black Diamonds, they will have IPhones.

Chapter Thirty-Five
1. The man stated his name to be Stephen Franklin, the CEO of Continental. Tall, medium build, with dark brown hair and an olive skin complexion, it was the first time that Jay had officially seen him in person. – I don’t know if Patrick Dempsey’s (Grey’s Anatomy) skin complexion would be considered as olive, but I always pictured him as Stephen Franklin.

Chapter Thirty-Six
I didn’t want to skip this chapter, but after reading it, there wasn’t anything in it to really dissect. Therefore I’ll be moving right along to Chapter Thirty-Seven in the next installment of Behind the Book.

Behind the Book (The Ace of Diamonds): Part IV: The Tipping Point, Chapters Thirty-One, Thirty-Two, & Thirty-Three

btbaceofdiam copyPart IV: The Tipping Point- The title of this section serves as an alert to the reader that you’ve reached the climax of the book.
Chapter Thirty-One
1. Once Kristian and Akaila were both back inside of their dormitory, Carmen got inside the mini-van, preparing for the long drive back home. – I debated about using the word dormitory because I was always corrected in college by the RAs that we don’t live in dorms or dormitories, but in residence halls, lol.
2. “There’s a freshman party at the Sphinx Club. It’s like opening night for the club or something. I wanna go. You know, learn the city; meet new people.”- While the Sphinx Club is the name of Blu’s club in Copperton City, this part of the chapter is also a reference to my freshmen college days. The first party I went to was hosted by Alpha Phi Alpha. The Great Sphinx of Gaza is actually the fraternity’s symbol. In this scene, Kristian is planning to attend her first college party at the Sphinx Club.
3. Kristian was about to say more until she was interrupted by a guy who came up to them out of nowhere. He didn’t appear to be a bouncer and looked like he had stepped out of the pages of a Ralph Lauren catalog. – The guy spoken of in this scene was supposed to be a strong supporting character in the original version of The Ace of Diamonds. Right now, it appears that his character will be deleted from the series all together. To be honest, I don’t even remember what his name was.

Chapter Thirty-Two
1. Malik came in right behind him, along with Cesar, a man his father had brought from Puerto Rico. He served mostly as his father’s right-hand, taking over Costa’s duties. – I will go on record and say that when I think of Cesar’s character, I always visualize Brian J. White. I don’t think he’s Hispanic, but he can pass for being a black Latino.
2. Like they say, no one man should have all that power. When you get to the top, you have no choice, but to come back down. – Both of these lines are references or inspired by two hip-hop songs. The first line, which is probably the most recognizable, is from Kanye West’s, “Power,” while the second line is from the Intro on Jermaine Dupri’s first solo album, Life in 1472.

Chapter Thirty-Three
1. His friend in Africa had an army much bigger than his and fiercer. – This line was not meant to be taken literally, but as I started working on the plots for future novels, it became a literal statement. This statement references Jay’s comrade in Africa who is supplying diamonds to him.
2. She realized he was when he followed her into the hospital’s garden. – I was visiting a family member at the hospital one time and needed some fresh air away from the nurses, and that hospital smell. I went down to the garden for some peace and quiet. When I was writing this scene, I figured it would be a good private place for Carmen and Kane to talk since they’re at the hospital.