Terésa Dowell-Vest

Goals: Writer

Genesis: New American Superheroes

“Genesis” follows the lives and adventures of five siblings who were given extraordinary powers by their scientist parents when they were children. The outcome, the resulting powers, far exceeds the parent's expectations. In present day, the siblings are reunited, having long forgotten their parents, their powers and each other. “Genesis” is the story of when five strangers must become family…and then heroes. Here's how it begins...


Get Your Copy of GENESIS Here!

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  • Genesis: The Invitation
    (Release Date: 9/1/2017)


    Genesis: The Test
    (Release Date: 2/1/2018)


    Genesis: The Battle
    (Release Date: 5/1/2018)


    Terésa Dowell-Vest

    Terésa Dowell-Vest is the founder of Diva Blue Productions and Publications and is a Professor of Film and TV Production at Prairie View A and M University and Houston Community College. In 2015, Terésa was a Visiting Professor for the Carter G. Woodson Institute for African American and African Studies at the University of Virginia. Her course there is entitled, "From the Drinking Gourd to #BlackTwitter: Social Communication for Social Change" Terésa is a three time Geoffrey Award (Santa Monica Theatre Guild) winning director and a NAACP Theater Award nominee. Terésa currently resides in Houston with her wife Michelle and their dogs, Ollie and Auggie.


    My Work

    Diva Blue Production Since 1997
    Diva Blue Publications Since 2010
    Diva Blue Photography Since 2000
    Educator Since 1994

    Genesis: New American Superheroes

    “Genesis” follows the lives and adventures of five siblings who were given extraordinary powers by their scientist parents when they were children. The outcome, the resulting powers, far exceeds the parent's expectations. In present day, the siblings are reunited, having long forgotten their parents, their powers and each other. “Genesis” is the story of when five strangers must become family…and then heroes. Here's how it begins...

  • eBook: Amazon / Blurb Books
  • Softback: Amazon / Barnes and Noble
  • Hardback: Blurb Books
  • The Death of Cliff Huxtable

    I figured if we kill off Cliff Huxtable, maybe we can finally separate Bill Cosby from the man he played from the man he is. This is a work of fan fiction, in a non-fiction world. This...is an ode to a hero.

  • eBook: Amazon / iTunes / Blurb Books
  • Softback: Amazon / Barnes and Noble

  • Passage Home

    “Passage Home” is the story of the day America killed currency, demolished the Social Security program, federally issued new tracking numbers for all citizens, mass deported those who could not prove citizenship, sealed the borders, and sent Black Americans back to Africa...in less than a year. Set in the year 2019, this 400 year anniversary of Africans in America would be like no other celebration we have ever known.

  • eBook: Amazon / iTunes / Blurb Books
  • Softback: Blurb Books
  • Hardback: Blurb Books

  • The Box 69: A Photographic Chronicle in Verse, Song, and Crayon

    "I've been hoarding my box of crayons... when I got up this morning, I opened them and got to experience Jazzberry Jam all the way thru orange... I laughed out loud, had tears running down my face from Fern, and was amazed at their beauty... what a perfect way to start my day. Thank you..." - Jane Lanier (Tony Award nominated Broadway actress, dancer, singer) "Beautiful!! You are no Salt or Pepa or Queen La.. but just as divine and inspiring... you are..Teresa and made me cry. God's most abundant blessings to you. Thank you for your creation." - Cheryl "Salt" James-Wray (Grammy Award winning hip-hop icon)

    The Box 69 Gallery

    The photographic gallery for the Box 69 series.

    Hot Sauce and Honey

    A collection of poems, essays and random thoughts about hot lust and sweet love.

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    Shirts vs. Skins


    Master Piece

    Dead Tone
    (Production Design)

    Flip The Script
    (Production Designer)

    40: A GoPro Swim

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  • FINALLY...A Long Time Coming! Genesis is HERE! The Introduction...

    Is it a novel? Is it a screenplay? It's neither. It's both. It's a non issue because it's my story and I'm telling it the way I want to tell it. What we're talking about, really, are rules. Rules for writing. Rules for identity. Rules for fantasy. But isn’t restriction…rules… the very opposite of fantasy? I think that's how we found ourselves in this mess in the first place: the mess of having so few Black Superheroes to celebrate. We have placed rules on fantasy and imagination. It is well beyond time to do things differently ... fearlessly.

    Growing up, I wanted to be Superman. Every weekend, I would turn on ABC Saturday morning cartoons at 8:30am to watch The Super Friends. In 1978, I accepted Christopher Reeves as the 'Man of Steel' and completely believed a man could fly as proclaimed in the movie trailer for Superman: The Movie. So for Halloween, 1979, it was no huge leap that I would be my favorite character and superhero. My mom bought me the Superman Under Roos. She allowed me to wear them over my blue body suit. You know…the awful ones that snapped in the crotch. She let me wear my ‘fourth Sunday’ white tights with white Keds. She safety pinned a reddish pink towel to my shirt at the shoulders for a cape. I knew better than to jump off anything because the towel was too short to catch air but I looked the part and I was excited.

    Red Hill Elementary School hosted the North Garden Halloween carnival every year. This night-time event was a great way to dress up and participate in Halloween games including a cake walk, a haunted house in the cafeteria created by the fifth graders and classroom to classroom "trick or treating". The highlight of the carnival was the Costume Parade! All of the kids were instructed to get in line and march in a parade to show off their imaginative costumes. I was so ready to march my lil Super behind in the parade with my hands on my non existing hips and my cape blowing in the wind. Standing in line with the other fourth graders, I overheard little white boys laughing at my costume. One eventually became so bold as to say, "You can't be Superman! You don't look right!" I looked down at my costume trying to figure out what part of it didn't look right. I looked just like Superman! I got a cape! Was my cape too short? Was the body suit was the wrong color blue? Dang it! Did my white tights and Keds messed up the look?!


    It was me. I was the wrong part of my costume. I’m standing there in my blue jumpsuit and a red towel, listening to this group of white boys in my fourth grade class, who were already so sure in their white and male privilege, they thought it fine to tell me I could not be the superhero I loved the most. Worse than the white boys laughing and pointing at my costume, the teachers standing nearby did nothing to correct them. Instead, I was the one they told, by a Black teacher ironically, "perhaps you should have chosen something else" in the same way many of our children were told "perhaps college isn't right for you" or "no, it's highly unlikely you'll become a doctor or a lawyer or President of the United States." And still, worse than both the laughing boys and the condescending teachers was the fact that I believed it to be true. I believed I chose wrong for wanting to be Superman.

    In 2006, I finally crafted the story I wanted to tell. It was the story I wanted to write and share with children who loved superheroes but never saw themselves depicted in the superheroes on television or in film. By 2006, the two Black Superheroes to have their own tv series or feature film where Spawn and Blade, respectively. Thinking back to the Red Hill Elementary Halloween Carnival, I found it difficult to believe parents would want their children to be the devil’s spawn or a murderous vampire. This would be my chance to create characters who would be Superman to children now and down the road. So I wrote the story I wanted to tell.

    Over the years, the story changed. When I first penned the "Genesis" screenplay in 2006, I firmly believed in the possibility of all things, including Black Superheroes on the big screen. It seemed like it was time. Regular white superheroes were making a comeback, so why not? I created characters I hoped children, in general, black children in particular, would look at as examples of their own greatness. But in 2008, a new and unexpected thing happened. An actual Black Man standing as tall and as proud as Superman himself, came into our lives and he stood for ALL of us. He stood for the American Way.

    Oh wait...uh oh.

    Barack Hussain Obama became a man of the people, for the people, voted in by the people and the people were happy. Kinda. Sorta. The we, the people, should have been so much more united because WE had done this progressive and heroic thing. WE elected a Black Man into the highest office in ALL the land...but we were real quick to see how we did not live in a…what did they call it? A Post Racial America? Who made that up? America, was still an 'us vs. them' nation and the Black Superman was worst than Kryptonite. How would my superheroes fit in this world? Are "we" the heroes? Are "we" the villains? The US was failing at being "us".

    For ten years, I held my characters close and tight. I was protecting them from a world that called my President a monkey, a terrorist and a foreigner. And then came Trayvon. And Mike Brown. And Eric Garner. Sandra Bland. Tamir Rice. And all the names with and without the hashtags and marches to lament their murders. No. My heroes were too hopeful for this world…too naive. The story I wanted to tell in 2006 no longer existed because in 2016 "we" were the villains, no matter who wrote the story. It was exhausting. It was infuriating. I was angry and felt like being the villain. And so I continued to write...writing my feelings and giving them to my heroes. I would let them decide: are they heroes who combat evil-doers or would they be the nightmare America expected them to be? Would they be the force to wake up this nation? The fun has been in letting them show themselves to me and introduce themselves to me in this new world There are no rules in this world.  None..

    Is it a novel? Is it a screenplay?

    It's storytelling.

  • Happy #NaNoWriMo2016 - Plan, Write, Sell, Succeed!

    Happy #NaNoWriMo2016!

    I'm writing. You're writing. We're ALL writing!

    Once all your writing is done, you're gonna want to sell and promote your book, right? Well, plan right...or in our case PLAN_WRITE! In celebration of all the writers working away this #NaNoWriMo, I'm going to help you with your business plan for your forthcoming best selling novel! Once you do all the creative stuff, let's get down to business!

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    Code: PLAN_WRITE

    Our Google Hangout will be Nov 15th to help you with your plan so mark your calendar! Details to come!

  • That Time Donald Trump Sounded Like Mister From The Color Purple... (VIDEO) #WhatDoYouHaveToLose

    The first time I heard it, I heard a thud in the room. It was the sound of my jaw hitting the keyboard when watching the Republican nominee for President, Donald J. Trump make a case for my vote. My allegiance has long since been given to Senator Hillary Clinton once it was clear Bernie Sanders wasn't gonna make the race and stamped with super glue with the announcement of Tim Kaine from my home state of Virginia. But when I tell you NOTHING could make me even LOOK in Trump's direction after this most recent declaration of bufuckery.

    Donald Trump is Mister from the Color Purple and the man is using the tactic of shaming to convince Black voters we need him.

    Donald Trump's "What Do You Have to Lose" speech to African American voters in Dimondale, Michigan on August 19th sounded a lot like Mister saying the "Whatcha Gonna Do" dinner speech as a tactic to discourage Celie from leaving in #TheColorPurple. Let me shame you into thinking you ain't got no choice BUT to do what I say.

    "What you got?
    You're ugly. You're skinny.
    You're shaped funny.
    You're too scared
    to open your mouth to people.
    All you fit to do is be Shug's maid.
    Take out her slop jar, maybe cook her food.
    You ain't even that good a cook.
    This house ain't been cIeaned good
    since my first wife died.
    Nobody's crazy enough to marry you.
    So what you gonna do?
    Hire yourself to farm?
    Maybe somebody will let you
    work on their railroad."

    "What do you have to lose?
    You're living in poverty,
    your schools are no good,
    you have no jobs,
    58% of your youth is unemployed
    What the hell do you have to lose?"

    From the mouth of Mister...

    But Trump...until you do right by us...us all...everything you THINK about is gonna fail!

  • You Can Not Be Silent: An Open Letter to President Barack Obama...a Black Man.

    Dear Mr. President,

    You do not get to be silent.

    Yes, you are the President of the United States and there because you had the audacity to hope. Well, you also endure the burden of history...a violence, bloody, water soaked from the hoses of Birmingham and the gnashing teeth of dogs history that is now present...again. The present is no less bloody but now the police do not turn on water hoses. They simply shoot. They shoot and they kill. You are a lawyer with a Harvard degree...surely you must be outraged by the number of Black AMERICANS who are tried and executed on American streets and sidewalks of this country you lead! I realize you have had a conversation with the young people responsible for the Black Lives Matter Movement along with Rep. John Lewis and leaders from the Civil Rights Movement but time preaching to the choir is done. Talking to people who share your views is not enough. You have the reach to bring law enforcement agencies, officials and lawmakers...people who appear indifferent to the cause of saving Black lives even...YOU can call upon these people for change. Even if the call falls on deaf ears, you can not be silent. You can not be silent when white mass murders shoot up churches, schools and movies theaters and then are taken into custody without a single scratch while Black men selling cigarettes, music or being a twelve year old playing in the park with his sister are criminalized and shot down in the street. You can not be silent.

    Your hand was slapped for acknowledging a simple truth in 2012: If you had a son, he would likely look like Trayvon. We haven’t heard you personalize or claim this hurt, this confusion, this solidarity, this anger, this love for a lost child...a son of the citizens who put you in office SINCE that day. Why? Because the backlash of “you are the President for ALL Americans” scared you out of speaking up when Black Americans were being killed by police...on camera, no less. You went from “this Black life mattered” to “ALL life matters” because the demographic that now make up Trump supporters slapped your hand and said you can’t be Black, speak of your Blackness and be the President at the same time. If you feel you must, it can only be in times of humor, song, dance and satire...but never, ever, in times of crisis in a racist America. The ones who slapped your hand have slapped it over your health care program, your jobs program, or the fact that it's a day of the week...any day of the week! The people who support you need you to support us back. With every #<insert name here>, our spirit is broken just a little bit more...but those ‘little bit more’ cracks are adding up and building to an ultimate breaking point. You have grown silent on us. That was NOT the way of Martin, Malcolm or Medgar. Do you not understand that it is YOUR face as the fourth on OUR Mount Rushmore?! Martin, Malcolm and Medgar would know these names...would lead the hurt...calm the angry. YOU DO NOT GET TO BE SILENT!

    Black people are being terrorized by the police in this country. We are sharing RULES and TIPS on how to act and exist in the event an police officer, an agent of protection and service, is in our presence. Law abiding citizens are more afraid of police officers than supposed terrorist so many claim are seizing any moment to kill us. We watched TWO men die today...literally watched them not exist on this planet any more. Black people are the villains in this country. That’s the narrative. That’s what the Trump people claim when they say they want to make America Great Again. We are hearing the rhetoric of George Wallace circa 1964 as the basis of a Presidential campaign...and he’s winning! Trump may not win the actual election but he is doing his part in making sure that the folks who never wanted you as President for the simple fact that you are a Black man are poked and prodded like bears in a cage. They see that there are NO CONSEQUENCES to shooting Black Americans in the streets. AND THERE ARE NO CONSEQUENCES! How is it possible that SO many people are dying at the hands of police and NO ONE is responsible for the people dying?! Essentially they are guilty of their own murder. Now, does that sound right to you? I am legitimately afraid of the police. I do not feel safe when I see them. I feel anxiety. I feel shame. I feel anger. I feel terror. And I am a college professor with absolutely NO REASON to feel any of those feelings...counting on politics of respectability to protect me but who’s to say I’m not the next Ersula Ore, the Arizona State University professor fought to the ground by campus police for jaywalking; or Professor Steven Locke of Massachusetts College of Art and Design because he “fit the description of a robbery suspect in the area” or Dr. Henry Louis Gates because there is NO way that’s his house and the police will come and place me under arrest without the benefit of actually being a law abiding citizen like MOST citizens of this country. 

    Emmett Till was murdered in 1955 and the loss of that one life helped launch a movement. Here we are, sixty years later and while possessing the audacity of hope and the illusion of equality, Emmitt is STILL laying in the street for hours, bloating in the summer sun of Ferguson. Emmitt STILL can not breathe. Emmitt STILL gets pursued by white men and murdered because he is Black and is on the wrong side of the street...or town. Emmitt is STILL being lynched and accused of his own death. Emmitt is STILL laying on display so we can all see his mangled body. And you can not be silent, Mr. President.

    Yes, we have broken so many barriers. We have embraced the dilemmas of integration and march with allies of all races and nationalities but our fathers and their fathers and our mothers and their mothers did not come this far for your silence. We have NEVER had a Black President and by the looks of things, it’s hard to say when we might have another...and for that reason, you can not be silent. You can not let another name flash upon our feeds and timelines for soon the regularity of that will bring about numbness and then complacency. I will not accept this America and I certainly will not accept it with your as the one we voted to speak on our behalf. I don’t care if there are only six months left. SPEAK! DO!

    Ronald Reagan let hundreds of thousands Americans die of a disease he did nothing to help treat or research because he didn’t acknowledge it existed until those deaths mounted up on the lawn of the National Mall with the Names Project and the AIDS Quilt. Is that what we need to do to get you to DO SOMETHING? Do we need to show up with the accounting of the Black men and women who are SUPPOSEDLY dying by their own hand with the assistance of police and call out their names? We have a record of them all! Social media archives are littered with hashtagged cries of “my child didn’t deserve this!” The youth shouting BLACK LIVES MATTER are getting sore throats and ALL of our patience is wearing thin. There are not more marches to be had. Those days have pass. Congressional sit in plays well on CSpan but we’ve long since turned the television off. We need action! With six months left in your Presidency, I suggest you do the following:

    - STATE LEADERS: Call together all the governors and the heads of law enforcement agencies and revise training protocol. It is understood that not every cop is a bad cop but it is hard to pick out the good ones among the ones using our youth for target practice.

    - SHOOTER LIABILITY INSURANCE POLICY: When a person buys a car, they must obtain insurance in the event an accident damaging the car or the life of another person can be compensated. Begin an insurance plan that requires a shooter to have some form of liability coverage, including police. If your own money is going into a policy to be given to the injured party, I’m willing to bet fewer people will be injured. 

    - Or toss those ideas out and come up with something that will serve as the spark we need. We need the glow of the light in a lighthouse, that stands higher than the storm itself. The clouds of despair is choking out the light of hope. You can not be silent for the one we chose to speak for us is you. If you don't, then what?

    Tonight, we watched as the four years old daughter of Philandro Castile‬, say to her mother, "It's okay, Mommy. It's okay, I'm right here with you." 

    Are you?

    You can not be silent.


    Terésa Dowell-Vest
  • First Beyonce, now Krystal Lake: Dear White Conservative America, The First Amendment Protects Us Too. Don't Like It, YOU Can Leave!

    Beyonce sings a song, dresses in black, expresses pride in herself and the legacy of her race...and she's labeled as un-American. Even more infuriating than the absolute certainty that Beyonce owed ANYONE an apology for demonstrating her 1st Amendment right, is the fact that there are police agencies threatening to withhold protection to her as she perform across America in her Formation Tour, the latest being in Pittsburgh, PA. Upon a closer listen to the song "Sorry" on Bey's album "Lemonade" and revisiting the brilliantly calculated twerk routine performed in the song's video by Serena Williams, it's clear the message of not apologizing for who these powerful women are had nothing to do with a possibly unfaithful husband. This song was a direct shot at White America who insist Black Women with voices need to be silenced or apologize if they demonstrate the audacity to be great. Whether it's the mainstream notion that Serena is unfitting the adoration of an American tennis legend because of her thick hips, muscular frame or her South Central crip dance or Beyonce's growing more and more "black" leaving white women on the outside looking in on her brand of feminism, both Beyonce and Serena are collectively saying, 'Nope! I ain't Sorry! I ain't thinkin' 'bout you!"

    White America needs to hear this message more often. White America needs to get use to Black voices speaking our truth, our Constitutionally protected truth, and know that we are not going to be silenced or made to apologize for exercising our rights. And White America needs to know we will not take shaming or threatening our fellow American citizens with violence because we exercise our fundamental rights as Americans.

    The right of free speech protection is also ensured for Krystal Lake.  When I came across the story of Krystal Lake and her "America Was Never Great" cap she chose to wear on the job at Home Depot over the weekend on Facebook, I told myself, "Do not read the comments." But I did...and when I saw a women by the name of Allison Leigh boasting about how she took the photo and turned Krystal in, this is how I responded:

    Krystal Lake = American Citizen exercising right PROTECTED by U.S. Constitution.
    Allison Leigh = Un American VIOLATOR of the U.S. Constitution and privileged minion of Big Brother.

    The Facts:
    Krystal Lake wearing a hat that expresses her personal and political views: protected by the 1st Amendment of the United States Constitution and is not conditioned by an employer’s policy or your malcontent for her truth. The Constitution does not recognize conditions of employment or white privilege. The 1st Amendment states that Krystal Lake’s expression is PROTECTED as FREE SPEECH.

    Allison Leigh’s act of reporting Ms. Lake is un-American. Ms. Leigh violated Ms. Lake’s act of FREE SPEECH when she policed Ms. Lake’s expression and reported her expecting “Big Brother” to reprimand Ms. Lake for her expression simply because Ms. Leigh didn’t like it.

    Truth of the matter is, you all are offended because this black woman wore a hat that spoke her 1st Amendment protected truth and you didn’t like it. You didn’t like what the hat said. You didn’t like that she had the audacity to say it. You didn’t like that it was at the Home Depot where you might shop and be inconvenienced by the confrontation of truth. You don’t like that black people continue to hold this country accountable for the wrong done to an ENTIRE race of people because those wrongs STILL affect that race of people today...not to mention wrongs done to EVERY Nation of indigenous people who lived here or in neighboring land from this country’s first day. Loving this country IS very much like loving your abuser and just because YOU do not understand that fact does not mean it isn’t true.

    The hypocrisy expressed on this thread, by the followers of this network, by the Fox Network itself, is mind blowing. Ms. Lake can't wear her hat but an employee of Home Depot or some elementary school, should be able to open carry a gun...because 'it's your Constitutional right'? But...in YOUR OPINION, it's not Ms. Lake’s right to wear that hat...but it's YOUR right to wear a gun. Her hat vs. your gun...

    ...and you question the message on her hat...or why she wears it.

    The Reality

    I am offended you all opposing Ms. Lake’s right to wear the hat or her right to express her voice have the nerve to call yourselves Americans. I am offended that you, attempting to police where she can wear the hat/express herself, call yourself Americans. The act of policing Ms. Lake illustrates that you believe the Constitution does not apply to everyone, especially Ms. Lake. Here’s the reality: the Constitution represents this young lady, maybe, more than all of you.

    The Constitution has been altered in ways that have changed the course of history in America and the promise of the future...all for Ms. Lake’s behalf. Yes, the Constitution may have been created for white men but on Ms. Lake’s behalf,

         1. Congress, President Andrew Johnson and the voting citizens of the United States thought the Constitution was flawed for representing a nation with institutionalized slavery and changed it by adding the 13th Amendment, ending slavery. Then...

         2. On behalf of Ms. Lake, Congress, the President and the citizens of the United States thought the Constitution was still imperfect because ALL people born on this land or who have devoted themselves dearly to the missions and laws of this country should be granted citizenship, adding the 14th Amendment. Even still…

         3. Seeing to it that the black men who would come before Ms. Lake should have a say in the leadership of this country to ensure an opportunity to be represented, another change was made, Amendment 15.

         4. Seeing to it that Ms. Lake’s gender should not interfere with her, and all American women, ability to stand among the counted, a 19th Amendment was added...with it in mind that Ms. Lake’s voice for freedom and civil rights would never be quieted.

         5. When the white and the privileged decided Ms. Lake’s voice was too loud and growing too strong for equality, the Supreme Court overturned the laws of segregation, forcing a lot of white folk to eat that ole Crow and further inspiring that other President Johnson to add the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act, seeing to it that her right to vote or walk FREE in America should never be infringed upon or taken from her.

    And given ALL of these attempts to ensure Ms. Lake’s freedom under the law and the Constitution, white people, such as yourselves, have made every effort to undo that whether through lynch mob violence, economic discrimination, political disenfranchisement or police brutality. THIS is why Ms. Lake wears the cap that says "America Was Never Great". This is but FIVE examples of times the Constitution was altered to ensure Ms. Lake be given an equal and protected life in America. YOU want to take that from her. Every one of you in this thread, in this country, who insist on shaming Ms. Lake for carrying out an ACT OF FREEDOM PROTECTED BY THE CONSTITUTION, are in VIOLATION of that very document.

    Ms. Leigh, you may be proud of your un American act and you may be basking in the glow of the pats on the back of the people who support your unpatriotic ways, but you, in no way, represent the greatness of America. You represent the worst of it.

    No, you may not LIKE what Ms. Lake’s hat says, but as Americans, you are bound by the Constitution to fight to your death to PROTECT HER RIGHT TO SAY IT. THAT is what it means to be an American and if YOU don’t like it, YOU can leave our country!

    And that's all I have to say about that.
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