I like to read Octavia E. Butler's 'Wild Seed' over and over again. And J. California Cooper's 'The Wake of the Wind.' That one makes me cry from joy. I'll mourn - I'll actually mourn - and then I'll cry from joy. She's wonderful.
There's a high school in Camden, New Jersey, I call the Jill Scott School. It's the Camden Creative Arts High School. Those teachers and kids are so passionate about what they do, and 98 percent of the senior class went on to college.
I didn't leave home until 27. I was an only child raised in Philadelphia by my mother and grandmother. My grandmother controlled the stove. She made a lot of potato meals - mashed potato, potato souffle, potato pancakes. When we didn't have electricity, we ate romantically by candlelight.
There's a certain level of realness in Philly. You know, just - people are people. You know, it doesn't matter who you are or who you think you are, you're just a person in Philly.
I love foods that start in my cheeks and then vibrate up.
Music shouldn't be a chore or feel like any kind of burden.
I have a few caftans just for lounging purposes. When I want to feel free, it's the closest thing to feeling naked without being naked.
I like a man who smells good. Puts on cologne; lotions his body. It keeps me wanting. I like feeling that way.
I just think it's silly to be stingy with compliments. If you see someone and they strike you as beautiful in any way, why not let them know?
Being a mom, it feels like I did something so powerful and amazing. It's such a gigantic blessing, and a confirmation that the Creator exists. And all of that has made me feel sexier and stronger. I call it 'lava in my spine.'
My grandmother told me: 'Never be in debt to anyone or anything.' Which is probably why I've never been financially extravagant - I still go to Costco. I'm always conscious of living within my means.
Seriously, in America there are more big, curvy girls than there are little girls, and men love us, too.
Back in my mid-20s I was told I'd never be able to have children as I wasn't having periods. Doctors tried to start up my monthly cycles, but when nothing worked, they actually offered me a hysterectomy. Without it, they said I might get ovarian cancer in the future. I chose not to have the operation, and am so glad I didn't.
As slavery died for the greater good of America, and the movement for equality sputtered to life, the white woman was on the cover of every American magazine. She was the dazzling jewel on every movie screen, the glory of every commercial and television show.
When I got my success, I became decadent for a while. This was 2003 to 2008. I fell for tiramisu really hard. I've become more moderate since, because African-Americans are prone to diabetes.
I'm a secret interior decorator. There's a mural on my dining room wall of the railroad tracks at 30th Street Station in Philadelphia. I love having my hometown with me out here in California.
I think the first time I really heard poetry was in the schoolyard. Just the little limericks that kids say when they're jumping rope and playing games. I think that's the first time I heard rhyming words - I don't know if I'd call that the definitive poetry, but that's when I heard rhyming words said and not necessarily sung.
I defy any woman who is pregnant and trying to concentrate really hard not to feel distracted.
I would say for every successful black woman in America or in the world, really, it's difficult to be the head of the household, financially. It is for the man in your life. It can be very hard for them. And there's a delicate balance. I'm not quite sure I know what that balance is just yet.
For anyone who feels they are overwhelmed by their job, or maybe they take their job too seriously or are working too hard, I say go to a safari, particularly the Okavango Delta, and just be humbled.