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A New Genre of Fiction: Sharon Denise Allison-Ottey
"All I Ever Did Was Love A Man"
An Educational and Fictional Novel about HIV/AIDS
Launching the "Get it Done!" Campaign
January 24, 2006--"All I Ever Did Was Love a Man"
is a love story with a powerful message. The novel takes the reader
through a woman's lifelong search for love and the continual failures
that she encounters in her search. The heroine, Sabrena, is torn
between her need to take care of her two daughters following her
recent divorce and her desire to be loved by a man. This is a story
of betrayal, pain, love, loss and triumph infused with intrigue
and mystery as she searches to find the source of her most daunting
"All I Ever Did
Was Love a Man" is so much more than the typical love story.
This story has an underlying health message that grabs the reader
and runs throughout the novel without ever becoming a traditional
health book. "I didn't want to write a health book--very few
people read health books from cover to cover. I wanted to write
a novel that was fun, captivating and held your interest but snuck
the health message on you and once trapped would spur you to read
more," says the author, Sharon Allison-Ottey of the novel and
this new genre. Readers learn about HIV/AIDS by watching Sabrena's
life from her emotional diagnosis, her gripping prayers for mercy
and healing, her guilt and shame, her disdain for medications, her
need to live for her daughters and her continued need for love.
The book puts issues that are never discussed on the table such
as sexuality post diagnosis, the role of a friend and family dynamics.
The messages that
are conveyed break down the stereotypes that we continue to cling
to about HIV/AIDS including the "face" of the persons
diagnosed. This book gives not only the reader a view of the main
character in dealing with her diagnosis; you look at her friends,
her family and yes--her lover. The story is rich with emotions and
stands as a fiction novel that merits reading by all age groups
and lovers of the romance genre. The health message in the story
demands national attention by the young and old. The author cleverly
inserts a personal letter to each of her readers at the end of the
story which demands increased personal attention to HIV/AIDS. Further,
the final pages are full of health information, statistics on HIV/AIDS
and general health tools that can be used no matter what the diagnosis
or condition by all persons. Sharon Allison-Ottey says her novel
as "fiction with a purpose" carrying a message that can
be easily understood without bogging the reader down in medical
"mumbo jumbo". The author is introducing a new genre to
the world of fiction; one that both entertains and teaches in a
way that is unique and impactful.
In conjunction with
the book launch, The COSHAR Foundation is launching the "Get
It Done!" campaign. "Get It Done!" will work to develop
a national cohesive coalition that will strategize on the most effective
response to HIV/AIDS in women, particularly women of color, in the
U.S. and territories. The campaign focus is on collaboration to
"Get It Done;" "It" refers to Awareness, Testing,
and Treatment for HIV/AIDS. While there are numerous organizations
that are working in the area of HIV/AIDS and making a significant
difference, the statistics remain concerning and require more effort
to decrease the incidence, morbidity and mortality of the disease.
The COSHAR Foundation is committed to this endeavor by fostering
collaboration, increased visibility as well as forging new partnerships.
The campaign will bring together various organizations including
faith based organizations, healthcare organizations, the pharmaceutical
industry, foundations and both profit and non-profit organizations
together for a collective cause. The first taskforce meeting for
the campaign is slated for February 2006.
Sharon Denise Allison-Ottey: Sharon Allison-Ottey is a frequently
requested and dynamic speaker and has appeared on numerous television
and radio shows. She has been interviewed and/or cited by a host
of media venues including USA Today, the Wall Street Journal, Black
Entertainment Television (BET), Redbook, Jet, Heart and Soul, Essence,
and Gospel Today magazine to name a few. Sharon Allison-Ottey continues
to make an impact wherever she goes and welcomes the opportunity
for you to look inside the world of her first heroine, Sabrena,
and join the "Get It Done" campaign. She also serves as
Director of Health and Community Initiatives at The COSHAR Foundation,
a non profit organization committed to the health of this nation.
About COSHAR Foundation:
The COSHAR Foundation Inc. is a non-profit 501 c 3 organization
focusing on the major healthcare issues facing the nation. The foundation
is organized to address health with a particular interest in health
disparities in the United States and around the world.