Today I am so pleased to welcome Kosoko Jackson to Joyfully Jay. Kosoko has come to talk to us about his latest release, I’m So Not Over You. Please join me in giving him a big welcome!
Why I Write Love Stories
If you had told Kosoko in 2013 that he would be publishing his debut adult rom com in 2022, he would have laughed at you.
2013 was when I seriously started to focus on being a writer. I was at a low point in my life—struggling to graduate from college—and didn’t know where I wanted my life to go. I had always followed a path I thought was right for me, because others told me it was right for me. I decided, one day, sitting in my car, sobbing over the fact I didn’t know what the heck I was doing, that I would follow a dream I always had for myself: I’d become a writer.
This path wasn’t easy – no dream ever is. I started writing young adult books in 2015, published my first one in 2021, and then sold the same year my first rom-com, which comes out in just a few weeks. I wrote young adult books, and still do, because I think seeing teen Black male characters in the spotlight of positive stories is important. I’m proud of the positive reception my young adult debut has had.
But I knew, I wanted to write a story that did one key thing: show that Black men, queer Black men deserve a happy ending.
My debut, I’m So Not Over You, follows Kian Andrews, a down-on-his-luck 20-something who needs a job. He gets help from an unlikely source, his ex, Hudson Rivers, who makes him a proposition: pretend to still be dating so Hudson can impress his parents during their visit, and he’ll put in a good word with the owner of the entertainment magazine Kian wants to work for, who is also Hudson’s high school friend. One simple lie quickly devolves into a romcomedy of errors where both men have to pretend to be dating for longer than intended, and navigate their feelings.
Kian is a Black male, struggling with identities of masculinity, dealing with his own anxiety, and his place in the world. I wanted to write a rom-com that had a happy ending, and still discussed major topics in the gay community to be as authentically as possible. Gay men, especially Black gay men, deserve to be seen authentically, but also be shown that our stories don’t have to end in jail, or murder, or AIDs or sadness. We can be happy. And that’s what I’m So Not Over You does.
I hope you, if you’re Black, white, female, male, nonbinary, questioning, or however you identity, you take a moment to pick up I’m So Not Over You! I truly think this story is a warm welcome home, with enough pop-culture moments to make you feel nostalgic, and enough authenticity to make you feel seen. The world is rough right now, and if you come away from reading it, feeling even 1% better, then I did my job.
And that’s all that matters.
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A chance to rewrite their ending is worth the risk in this swoony romantic comedy from Kosoko Jackson.
It’s been months since aspiring journalist Kian Andrews has heard from his ex-boyfriend, Hudson Rivers, but an urgent text has them meeting at a café. Maybe Hudson wants to profusely apologize for the breakup. Or confess his undying love. . . But no, Hudson has a favor to ask—he wants Kian to pretend to be his boyfriend while his parents are in town, and Kian reluctantly agrees.
The dinner doesn’t go exactly as planned, and suddenly Kian is Hudson’s plus one to Georgia’s wedding of the season. Hudson comes from a wealthy family where reputation is everything, and he really can’t afford another mistake. If Kian goes, he’ll help Hudson preserve appearances and get the opportunity to rub shoulders with some of the biggest names in media. This could be the big career break Kian needs.
But their fake relationship is starting to feel like it might be more than a means to an end, and it’s time for both men to fact-check their feelings.
Buy Link: Amazon
Kosoko Jackson was born and raised in the DC Metro Area, and recently changed from a life obsessed with domestic politics to a life obsessed with international politics, which is different and the same all at the same time. Learn more online at kosokojackson.com.