In the book Welfare Grind,  cold-hearted Keema takes the world by storm as she navigates her way through every trick and scam she can pull off. With four kids in tow, living off the welfare system had become her life along with the extra cash, sex and violence, her gangsta boyfriend Dupree brought into her life. Soon, chaos erupts, causing Keema's secret past to become a problem. When the chips fall, they fall hard, leaving Keema willing to do whatever it takes to keep money in her pocket. She's willing to go that extra mile!

Primary Message:  Readers’ walk away with a realistic understanding of the GOOD, BAD and the Ugly when dealing with the Welfare System. Although the story is told in a vivid, fast-paced way, it’s a shocking eye-opener.

Purchase Welfare Grind by Kendall Banks
ISBN-10: 1934230383
ISBN-13: 978-1934230381
LCB Publishing:


Still Grindin'  by Kendall Banks
( Released Sep 6, 2012 )

Keema is back and dirtier than ever in this sequel to bestselling novel, Welfare Grind. After oddly maneuvering her way out of the blood bath she left behind in Arizona, Keema is up to her old tricks again. Between sex, greed and murder it s almost impossible to escape from the hood life she s grown accustomed to. From one scam to the next, she finally comes up with a new hustle that rains money and is sure to give her the riches she thinks she deserves.  That is until someone from her past emerges sending her into mental shock.  The stakes become high as Keema fights for her life, still with her mind on her money. While stacking paper Keema also stacks enemies...old and new.  Unfortunately for her, her street savvy mentality may not be enough to get her off this time.

ISBN-10: 1934230413
ISBN-13: 978-1934230411

Meet the Author
Kendall Banks, Executive Assistant by day, bartender by night is the proud author of Rich Girls, One Night Stand, Another One Stand and Welfare Grind. She originally hails from both Georgia and North Carolina and presently resides in Washington, D.C.  Her long time goal was to produce movies, however after writing her first movie script and failing, she turned it into a manuscript and submitted it to LCB. Ironically, after the success of One Night Stand the novel, an independent studio picked up the project and is now in pre-production. Kendall enjoys the success of her hard work but participates in community service activities often.

Connect with Kendall Banks
Twitter:    @authorKendallB
Facbook:  AuthorKendallB



Excerpt: Welfare Grind

by Kendall Banks


As usual the Social Services’ lobby was packed with young hoodrats and their whining kids. Despite signs posted all over the place telling people  “No Cell Phone Use”,  these chicks were carrying on the loudest most annoying conversations while their kids ran through the lobby like gang bangers tearing up everything in sight.

I hated coming down to this place. But in order to keep my Government Assistance, I had to come down here every several months to see my caseworker; rain, sleet, or snow. For about an hour I had to look in her pale face and listen to her ask me a bunch of questions about my personal business. My answers to the question were always the same. They never changed. Whatever it took to keep the checks coming in. In my opinion, the visits were a waste of time. She could ask me whatever she needed to over the phone.

Looking around at all these broads made me think about my situation. Damn, I hadn’t planned on being one of them for this long. When I first got on welfare and began to learn all of the tricks of milking the system, it seemed like I’d hit the jackpot. I didn’t have to punch a clock or break my back. All I had to do was go to the mailbox every first of the month. But eventually it all grew tiresome and I saw it for what it was. Of course, my mother had been preaching to me all along.  I’d expected to be living much better by now; instead I was still in the projects, still sleeping with no good men, and still having to answer to these white folks for my money. The realization made my eyes roll at the ladies sitting around me.

Anyway, I was dressed in a shabby T-Shirt, jeans, and ran over pair of Reeboks. My hair was in a plain looking ponytail. Obviously that wasn’t the way I usually got down. But in order to keep the checks coming in, I had to come in looking like a bummy broad, one who was definitely looking like life was giving her a hard time. I always made sure to park my Charger a couple blocks away and pretended like I’d caught the bus. My case worker would get super nosey if I pulled up to visit her rocking the Gucci and Prada my closet was filled with.

As I chewed the tips of my nails my eyes looked up at the clock for the fourth time. I’d already been out here waiting for nearly two hours. I guess her punk behind was calling herself trying to teach me a lesson about showing up late. That’s so damn ignorant. If she was going to make me wait out here for this long, she could’ve had the decency to tell me. I could’ve had something important to do. Games like this one pissed me off. Every time I came for my appointment the pathetic trick acted like I was here asking for her money, like I was trying to get in her pockets. I was here for The Government’s money, which them greedy white folks had plenty of. All my caseworker had to do was quit hating and go ahead and set that money out like her job dictated.

Finally the door to the back offices opened up. Ms. Vines, my caseworker, stuck her head out. She was wearing an out dated pant suit too tight for her fat frame, and a pair of run over heels, which she seemed to have on each and every time since the very first day I met her. Her dark skin was dry and acne filled, which came from drinking too many of them Cokes she always had on her desk. And today her short, bob styled wig was matted to the left side of her head.

“Keema Newell !” she called.

“Bout time,” I whispered as I stood from my chair and quickly walked past her, anxious to find out when I was getting my kids back and get this visit over with. The two of us headed to her tiny office. As we walked I could smell a double cheese burger with extra onions seeping from her pores. Once we reached her office she plopped down behind her desk, opened a drawer and pulled out my case file. She opened it and sat it on her desk next to the half-empty bottle of Coca Cola.

“Was my Medicaid application accepted?” I asked as I sat down. We’d discussed me getting full coverage during the last visit. I was hoping I’d be approved before the next check, which would be here in ten days. I was always trying to milk her ass for whatever I could get. “Deniro’s doctor really thinks he may have a disability,” I lied.

“Keema, right now the Medicaid application is the least of your worries.”

Here she goes. My eyes wanted to roll but I forced them to remain still. Despite how much I hated her, Ms. Vines wrote the checks so I had to be cool.

“We need to begin this visit with you telling me about why the children are in Baltimore City custody.”  She eyeballed me like she was better than me or something. “That’s the reason I requested the meeting.”

“The police kicked my door in two days ago pointing guns at me and my kids,” I told her. “They told me somebody lied and said I was selling drugs out of my apartment. Can you believe that?”

“Why would someone do that?”

“You know how people are, Ms. Vines. They nosey and always want to get stuff started. Just because I don’t associate with none of them, they want to mess with me. I’m out looking for jobs everyday and they hatin’ on that. That’s all that is.”

“Keema, the police don’t just kick in doors for no reason. They do investigations before they do something that extreme.”

“Not this time, they didn’t. They kicked mine in for nothing.”

Ms. Vines gave me a smirk and looked down at my case file. “Keema, the police found a gun and marijuana in the apartment,” she said raising her head to look at me.

“But it wasn’t mine,” I said, trying to sound convincing.

“Then whose was it?”


“Your boyfriend’s son?”

“Yeah, I didn’t even know he had the stuff.”

“You had no idea, huh?” she asked pursing her lips.

“I really didn’t.”

“Doesn’t he have autism?”

“Yeah, that’s why I’m so surprised. I’m starting to wonder if the autism thing is an act. You know autism is a brain problem that makes it hard to communicate. But if he selling drugs then he communicating just fine.”


I cut her off since she hadn’t been convinced yet.  His father told me that his autism only meant he’d have social impairments and some mild character flaws, but this is too much. As a matter of fact, I’m thinking about telling his daddy he needs to find Shane another place to stay. I can’t have that kind of stuff around my kids.”  She stared at me for a moment, causing me to nibble on my nails again. I always did that when I was nervous. Right now I didn’t quite know what was going through her mind but the look on her face showed me she still didn’t quite believe me.

“Ms. Vines, I miss my babies,” I whimpered. “They’re my world. I haven’t even been able to sleep since the cops took them.” I stopped to snivel before continuing, “And it’s breaking my heart so bad I went to church this morning and prayed on it. That’s why I was late to see you. Oh God, Ms. Vines, when will I be getting them back?”

Ms. Vines leaned forward and folded her hands on the desk. “Keema, do you have any idea how serious this situation is? There was a gun underneath one of your children’s mattress and drugs in a cereal box.”

“But they weren’t mine,” I whined. “I didn’t even know the stuff was there. I swear to God in Heaven I didn’t.”

“I find that hard to believe, Keema.”

“Do you think I would actually have a gun and drugs around my kids?” I asked in disbelief.

“You tell me,” she said. “The police have also stated they found a lit blunt in your apartment.”

“That was Shane’s too.”

“You mean you didn’t smell him smoking?”

“I told you that autism thing may be a front. He’s real slick.”

She leaned back into her chair and looked at me strangely.

“I’m not lying, Ms. Vines. I would never put my kids in harms way like that.”

She exhaled. “Keema, I’m going to be straight forward with you. “You’ve been on assistance for several years. You haven’t shown any urge to find gainful employment.”

I slammed my hand on the desk. “I go on job interviews all the time!”            

“Let me finish, Keema,” she said sternly. “You’re always late for our appointments. You’ve failed drug tests. To be honest with you, if it wasn’t for the kids, I would’ve taken you off of assistance a long time ago.”    I looked at her pitifully, biting my nails again.

“The system is in place to empower you, not enable you Keema.”

“I know, Ms. Vines. That’s what my mother tells me all the time. And I swear I’m trying my hardest. I’ve made mistakes but I’m a good person and I love my kids.”  She looked at me with no emotion. She was pissing me off but I didn’t show it. I stayed in character despite the fact that she was trying to give me such a hard time.

“It’s so hard out here for a single black mother, Ms. Vines.” Tears appeared in my eyes.

“I’m sorry Keema. No money this month until your case is reviewed further.”

I almost fainted.

( Continued... )

© 2012 All rights reserved. Book excerpt reprinted by permission of the author Kendall Banks.  This excerpt is used for promotional purposes only. Do not reproduce, copy or use without the publisher's written permission. Copyright infringement is a serious offense. Share a link to this page or the author's website if you really like this promotional excerpt.

Purchase Welfare Grind by Kendall Banks
ISBN-10: 1934230383
ISBN-13: 978-1934230381
LCB Publishing:



Intimate Conversation with Kendall Banks

Kendall Banks, Executive Assistant by day, bartender by night is the proud author of Rich Girls, One Night Stand, Another One Stand and Welfare Grind. She originally hails from both Georgia and North Carolina and presently resides in Washington, D.C.  Her long time goal was to produce movies, however after writing her first movie script and failing, she turned it into a manuscript and submitted it to LCB.  Ironically, after the success of One Night Stand the novel, an independent studio picked up the project and is now in pre-production.  Kendall enjoys the success of her hard work but participates in community service activities often.

BPM:  Introduce us to your book, Welfare Grind and the main characters. What makes each one special? Do you have any favorites?
Welfare Grind starts off with an explosive scene that shows Keema, the main character not taking ownership of something that has the authorities at her front door. When her kids are taken away from her this starts a downward spiral for tons of tricks and scams that Keema pulls off to get them back…all in the name of  getting those Welfare Benefits. The money is good..REAL good and she can’t stand the thought of not collecting the funds.  Keema’s character is very authentic and has readers wanting to choke her!

Treasure is Keema’s daughter who subliminally acts just like her mother. At ten years old she’s had to grow up all too soon becoming an apprentice in their project based home. Treasure is quick, witty and extremely intuitive. Unfortunately for Keema, karma may come from her own child. They say- the apple never falls far from the tree. 

PM:  Which character in Welfare Grind can you identify with the most? Why?
I can mostly identify with the ten year old character, Treasure. Forced to grow up without a father and ultimately be responsible for her younger brother’s well-being, Treasure often takes the ‘mother role’ and is allowed to use her own judgment to solve problems at such a young age.  I myself was one of those kids who didn't have a relationship with my father, so I knew this was a subject that a lot of readers could relate to.

BPM:  What inspired you to write this book, Welfare Grind?     
I grew up in a small town, where there were the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’ Although I wasn’t one of those children who constantly had to miss a meal, I knew several kids whose mother was on the system, so that was my first introduction to that lifestyle. I have such vivid memories of my friends having to struggle. That stuck with me for life, not realizing the effects their situation may have had on them until now.
BPM:  Is this the book you intended on writing or did it take on a life of its own as you were writing? How do you stay focused?
It definitely took on a life of its own because the character, Keema became so dramatic and entertaining after the first chapter. She became far more dimensional that I ever imagined and has several variations. She became so exciting, and so absorbing, I couldn’t stop writing. Even with her flaws, the readers seem to love her.

BPM:  Ultimately, what do you want readers to gain from your book?
I want readers to walk away with the understanding that being on the system is a choice and getting off is a lifestyle change. It’s easy to get complacent when you’re getting income to live with little effort. The money may seem good on the surface, but is it really self gratifying and what message does it send to your children? For those who really need it, I’m hoping they use it to help them get on their feet then get off of it.
BPM:  What are your goals as a writer? Do you set out to educate? Entertain? Illuminate? Inspire?
What I’ve presented in this book is so surreal, my goal is to entertain and well as educate. I try to write books that are fast moving, while allowing the readers to feel good about having spent time with my characters. If they can also walk away with a slightly different way of viewing the world or a certain situation, then I’ve done my part.

BPM:  We are here to shine the spotlight on your new book, but what's next?  How may our readers follow you online?  
My next project is the sequel to Welfare Grind, entitled Still Grindin’. This book is going to explore the aftermath of Keema’s decisions and what effects they had on Treasure.
BPM:  Thank you  for sharing a little bit about yourself, your journey and your book with our readers!

Purchase Welfare Grind by Kendall Banks
ISBN-10: 1934230383
ISBN-13: 978-1934230381
LCB Publishing:

Connect with Kendall Banks
Twitter:  Kendall @authorKendallB
Facbook:  AuthorKendallB




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