Welcome to Mella Davis, Writes!

About Mella

Professional Biography

In truth, I began my writing journey as a poet. My poetry submissions were accepted at The Crab Orchard  Review, and I was chosen as one of the recipients of the Chicago Poetry Society Poet Award  in 1996. Later, I turned my attention to short fiction and studied at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. I worked with Pablo Medina and A. Manette Ansay. Subsequently, Valerie Miner invited me to study fiction with her at the Flight of the Mind Conference. Only recently have I begun a foray into children’s literature.

Additionally, I trained as an ethnographer and folklorist, doing my doctoral studies at Northwestern University, examining how Gullah and French Creole oral traditions preserved African culture in America. My dissertation was also accepted for publication by the University of Mississippi Press. For the last twenty years, I focused my attention on education, earning a Masters-level Teacher’s Certificate. I taught English and French at a Texas public high school. In the last nine years, I  have pioneered educational initiatives in Worcester, South Africa, educating primary-aged children in reading literacy and English as a second language.

Based on my experiences in South Africa, in 2019, I created a children’s books series entitled Whimsical Tales. Presently, four books compose the series set in the African landscape. Filled with ancient communal wisdom, the series recounts the adventures of various life-like characters. As I began to write, I recognized that God wanted to use the stories to bring healing and provide important life lessons to kids. In the end, the writing process connected with my entrepreneurial efforts, and I began making stuffed toys based on the series’ characters. To me, good literature transcends age limits. Any story’s worth should be measured by its ability to draw the child out of us.

I write from my Southern roots. My present writing explores African-American history in Texas through the eyes of a female child. In this fiction series, I tell the story of an African-American multigenerational family, the Banks-McClure clan. They experience trials and triumphs in their quest for racial equality in Texas. My stories illustrate the perseverance, strength, and fortitude that created Black success in Texas.

I am honored that you are joining me on an adventure to know and be known.

Enjoy!

Personal Biography 

As an African-American woman and a native Texan, I saw evidence of familial racial indignities and legal injustices. Born in 1968, I experienced the mixed blessing of integration in 1970’s Texas. I had more opportunities than my family raised during the Jim Crow South, earning a doctoral degree in 1998. But I encountered varying levels of institutionalized racism. 

I am intrigued by the stories of little-known African Americans who faced racial adversity in Jim Crow Texas but prospered despite quasi-legal limitations and physical danger. I have a passion for honoring and telling these heroes’ hidden stories using the fiction genre.

Poetry

Disposable Things

Disposable Things

This poem is autobiographical. My uncle, Roosevelt Green, aka, Ninny was a slender, handsome man. Born sixth of eleven children, he most physically resembled my grandfather. After losing my grandfather, Uncle Roosevelt lived in my parents’ home. He was more a big...

Who welcomed you?

Who welcomed you?

One of our greatest fears revolves around rejection. The need for welcome and reception are central to feeling accepted, knowing that we belong. But we were empowered to do that most important work ourselves- to welcome ourselves to this alien world.Who welcomed...

Tending My Soul

Tending My Soul

Sometimes, your very soul needs to breathe. Is there an app for that? Well, there is a poem for it. Enjoy.Tending my soullike the small potted Daffodil on kitchen ledgewhile the Bougainvillea outdoorsplurges and spills over the white washed walls into warm afternoon...

Blog

Cat’s Cradle

Cat’s Cradle

Have you ever seen a cat’s cradle? It is a children’s game that is played with strings. You take the strings in your hand and you pull them apart and they make a unique formation. Then another friend tries to put his hand through the cat’s cradle without getting...

Dreams

Dreams

The Lord has been speaking to me about understanding how to interpret our dreams. Recently I have had a series of dreams and they all seem to be saying the same thing. The reality is that what the dream seemed to indicate would happen did not come to fruition. These...

Ghostbusters

Ghostbusters

The soul is rather sneaky. It's like a sly wily beast and it will do whatever is necessary to survive. The soul is both a friend and an enemy-a true frenemy. When we are younger, the soul hides its wounds through compartmentalization and disassociation and other such...

Fiction

Bella and the Quilt of Many Colors

Bella and the Quilt of Many Colors

After lunch, Mama bundled Bella into her new pink coat and patent leather boots. Bella’s thick curly hair stuck out of two ponytails. “If we’re going to visit Grandma today, we need to hurry,” Mama announced, looking down at her. Bella’s bright hazel eyes stared...

Bella in a Sticky Situation

Bella in a Sticky Situation

Bella leaned on her elbows, stifling a yawn with the palm of her hand. It was only 9:00 a.m., but she was already bored to tears in 5th-grade social studies class. She knew all these facts. Slyly, she tried to sneak a peek at her trove of books concealed in her green...