Vital Narrative Announces First Annual Weekend Workshop & Retreat

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DATE: Friday, August 31, 2018 - Sunday, September 2, 2018

WHERE: A private location in Memphis, TN

PURPOSE: To unplug for three days, fellowship and read the work of other authors, as well as offer the opportunity for authors to receive a critique of their works in progress

COST: $350 ($275 if booked before August 15)

Spots are limited. Click here for tickets.

Cover Reveal For 'Summer Camp Is Cancelled'

Darlene Campos' second novel, Summer Camp Is Cancelled, will be released on August 3rd, but today, we officially reveal the cover. Pre-orders will begin Friday, June 22nd.

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Summer Camp Is Cancelled is a young adult novel about Lyndon, a Mexican boy from Bat Springs, Texas who is enamored with his best friend Melody, a deaf girl who uses a whiteboard as her voice. Pre-orders will begin Friday, June 22nd.

We Are The Lions


About a month after our third anniversary, I lost someone close to me and it took a while for me to get over. Coincidentally, she was incredibly vital to Vital Narrative since the very beginning and I would be remiss not to mention her contributions to the company. Her name was Panda, and back when I was still sleeping on my grandmother's couch, she allowed me to create and share my talents with the world.

That's because Panda was my 21-inch iMac computer and she was where every Vital Narrative document lived.

 This is NOT Panda.

This is NOT Panda.

Unfortunately, old age caught up with her and despite my best efforts, she still ended up joining that old Apple graveyard in the sky. So after I grieved an appropriate amount of time,  I found a suitable replacement named Simba and immediately got back to work.

If there was a silver lining to the whole ordeal, it was that everything had to be transferred over and it gave me a chance to go through our archives. I went on a wild trip down memory lane and came across some of our old logos from WAAAAAY back.

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The Sequel


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The Panda



Looking at where we came from made me even prouder of what we've become and where we are headed in the future. But in doing that, I knew it was time for the company itself to evolve into something more representative of what's to come.

When we first began, the bear was the key element of our brand, meant to represent how multi-faceted people of color are despite mainstream media's obsession with pigeonholing our experiences.

Not long after Panda died, we posted this on our Facebook page:

To the casual observer, this was probably just another post - but it was really the mark of our new identity: we are the lions who learned to write.

With fake news running rampant these days, it's imperative that we write and share authentic experiences with the world. It's easy to complain about how we are portrayed in media, but now, more than ever, we have the ability to control these narratives.

The hunters have told tall tales of their journeys for centuries - but now that the lion has the pen, we have a duty to honor all that came before us.

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We are the lions who learned to write - and writing is what we will do.

Campos To Donate Royalties to Hurricane Relief



Floods aren’t anything new in Houston. We’ve gone through hurricanes before. We knew the neighborhoods most prone to flooding before Harvey paid us his visit. We prepared ourselves with full hoards of food, bottled water, and gas. We thought we were ready.

Harvey showed us we were wrong the minute he arrived.

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Yet, unlike thousands of fellow Houstonians and Texans in other cities, I didn’t lose anything.

I didn’t lose power.

I didn’t lose water.

I didn’t lose my car.

I didn’t lose my house.

I didn’t lose my life.

The only physical loss I had was a couple of pounds because I was so petrified, I could barely eat. Harvey made me lose weight. That’s it.

Harvey also made me lose pieces of my heart. The neighborhood where I grew up is in shambles. A beloved bakery my fiancé and I visited whenever we wanted a good dessert is gone. The libraries I practically lived in during my college years are severely damaged. Watching your city, the place you call home, conquered by floodwaters is agonizing. Yet, Harvey did not take Houston’s hope. We Houstonians watched our city be ravaged by Harvey. We Houstonians have come together to rebuild.

After Harvey, I was overjoyed to be unharmed, but I felt so guilty to be spared. Why didn’t Harvey come for me? He tried. He flooded my entire street and then the water crept up to the rear of my car. By morning, the water receded. Harvey came close. For others, he came full force and showed no mercy.

I pledge to donate my royalties from September 15th through October 15th to the Greater Houston Community Foundation’s Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund. For the next month, all of my royalties will go directly to helping Houstonians rebuild their lives. Please visit for more info or to donate.


“And so there are claims forgiven

And so there are things that are gone

Houston is filled with promise…”

  • R.E.M., “Houston,” 2008

Author Appreciation Sale Extended



In a press release on Easter Sunday, CEO Gregory Hedgepeth II announced a continuation of the Author Appreciation Sale through Friday, April 21.

Things have gone very well and our readers continue to respond favorably to the sale. We see that the support is there and we want to continue to support our authors as much as we can. It only makes sense to extend the sale a little longer.
— CEO Gregory Hedgepeth II

Along with a reduced price of $10 for all paperbacks on its site, all Vital Narrative eBooks (currently on sale for just $1 through Amazon Kindle) sold throughout the month of April will result in a 100% royalty for the author.

In addition, this also includes one more week to get Darlene Campos' first novel, Behind Mount Rushmore, at a discounted price as it just began presales last Friday.

You can purchase all paperbacks here.

Author Appreciation Sale



I have quit just about everything I've ever started. I've quit jobs. I've quit relationships. I quit JV football because I thought I was good enough to make varsity. Then I made varsity and quit that too.

In my 32 years here on earth, I've quit a million things. I can't make excuses for it... but I can say this: I refuse to quit on the authors here at Vital Narrative Press. We are two and a half years in and while I've thought about quitting the company more than a few times, my mind always goes back to them, and frankly, I'd be incredibly foolish to quit.

Call me biased, but the roster here is unparalleled. If it were possible to partake in some kind of literary deathmatch, I'd pit my entire roster against any other publisher's out there and I'm more than certain we would come out on top. We have the talent, the drive and the commitment to make our stories come to life, and in the past year or so, we've released a handful of projects and I've been incredibly proud of each one of them.

And it's important to me that these stories get the recognition they deserve. At the end of the day, Vital Narrative Press is simply the platform for our writers to shine. It's not about us - it's all about them.

Beginning Monday April 4, we will have our first-ever Annual Author Appreciation Sale, meant to support our writers. Each project we've released thus far has been incredible and we just want to share those projects with you in a scenario that benefits you just as much as it benefits our authors. Not only do we believe in supporting our authors, but we plan to put our money where our mouth is: we're offering 100% royalties for all Kindle sales in the month of April for every available author on the roster.

You can purchase a $1 e-Book or $10 paperback that will let them know just how much you appreciate their talent and hard work. It's our intent to continue to share our authors' work and help them build a platform. Believe it or not, it's not just a fancy sales pitch - we write books "because our stories matter."

Full Cover Release Date For 'Behind Mount Rushmore'



Earlier this month, we revealed a sneak preview of the cover for Behind Mount Rushmore when Darlene Campos dropped her Spotify playlist, which featured that infamous blue-and-white truck (if you haven't had a chance to check out her amazing playlist, be sure to listen below).

Tomorrow, March 31st, we will finally reveal the full cover for her debut novel which is set to release on May 19th. A description for the novel is posted below:

‘Behind Mount Rushmore’ is a story of survival, family, love and humor on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Nimo Thunderclap is a young boy living there where life is tough, but wonderful. No matter what life throws at him, he can take it - or can he?

Pre-orders will begin on April 14th.