A well-known Tulsa author is out with a new book, that he believes, has the power to change the world. Clifton Taulbert said it all starts by accepting the invitation.
Taulbert is no stranger to promotional tours, he's the author of 13 books, but he said "The Invitation," which took him seven years to write, is the most personal of them all.
"It's weird, and it's vulnerable, and it's scary, but it's necessary to do," Taulbert said.
The book chronicles Taulbert's relationship with Miss Camille, a South Carolina woman descended from generations of slave owners. An invitation to visit her plantation sent him on a five year journey of self-discovery.
"When I drove through that grove of standing oak trees, dressed in Spanish moss, I had a cultural meltdown. Because all I could do was remember the way it was when I was a kid growing up in the Mississippi delta," Taulbert said.
Taulbert's story of growing up behind a wall of segregation is told in his book "Once Upon A Time When We Were Colored," which was later made into a critically acclaimed movie.
His life today is a success by any measure. He's earned two college degrees, started his own company and been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, and yet, in an instant, the power of that wall was back to haunt him.
"As the son of a maid, we've grown up to be writers, we've grown up to be lawyers and doctors, but the lingering lessons of race and place that we encounter as children still travels, it still travels with you," Taulbert said.
Taulbert found himself breaking free of his past alongside a 90-year-old woman who was raised on opposite end that divide.
"I saw her literally break all the rules of legal segregation that her generation had put in place," said Taulbert.
And in their journey, he sees a path that could help heal a nation. "The Invitation," he said, is a story of hope.
"If Miss Camille can do it, so can the rest of the world," he said.
You can find Taulbert's new book at bookstores and amazon, or you can contact him directly to get a signed copy.