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Banishing Scriptophobia & Graphophobia

Note: These are real psychological conditions and they need to be treated with respect. With that said, fear is a source of self-rejection. So, let us examine this. -JBHarris

Scriptophobia: fear of writing in public

Graphophobia: fear of writing (or even thinking of writing)

Fear is the root of self-rejection as it relates to writing! Fear is a liar, a gossip, a mocking bird, and a hole in the bottom of any ship! It is the enemy of imagination. Let me say it again:

FEAR IS THE ENEMY OF IMAGINATION!

When confronting these serious circumstances, let me say these four things—

Fear is natural, not normal. There are some things about writing that are frightening. But most of this fear comes from what other people may think about your work! The red pens, the Omnipotent No and the rejection of manuscripts. Fear of rejection comes with the territory of writing. Yet, you must bear in mind this one thing, “I have the ability to write whatever I want, and I have the freedom to write whatever I want.”

Make this your mantra. It will save your sanity!

See what scares you. The thing that keeps your from writing, has to be seen in order to be confronted. The most important question you must ask yourself is, “What is scaring me about this work?” I cannot emphasize this enough! Aside from asking yourself, “What am I going to write about?” You have to ask yourself if there is something relating to this work–or a future work–that could cause you to be scared to write it. Here, right here, is where writers get and become stuck. If you cannot confront what is scaring you, if you will not confront what is stopping you, you will ever write.

Think about this! Do you want to be in such a blockage that you cannot create anything else…because you don’t believe you can!

See the problem, dear ones. Stop running from it.

*Note: Trauma is a real thing, and anxiety is real. Know that help is available, and you are entitled to ask for what you need. Artists sometimes are the people whom need to confront what bothers them, what hurts them in order to write as they need. Don’t release the gift without a fight!

Schedule, prep time and relaxing. When confronting this level of fear and apprehension, getting a routine together to write/create is comforting. Even if that is 5 minutes to think about what you want to write. In that time, take 5 deep breaths–thinking on what you want to write about. Focus your energy on being relaxed enough to imagine. From that, try and write for five minutes. Consider this akin to learning to walk again. You have to give yourself time. Be gentle with yourself. Take it one step at a time.

Slay the dragons. Write. You have to write through the fear! You MUST write through the fear. Remember, the first person you write for is yourself! The first person who is your first fan of your work is YOU! The rest of the world will come–if you want.

Tip: Try keeping a journal. Don’t commit to a word count or page count. Just write. Whatever it is, whatever you feel. Just write it down.

This is a start, my Oracles. Take this tricks. Take these tools and slay your dragons. I know you can.

Encouragement Pages-06/17/2020

What are you waiting for?

There is a need within you to write, so why on Earth are you ignoring it? You have worlds within you waiting to be shown and explored!

Be brave and explore them…one word at a time.

With Love & Ink,

JBHarris

The Art Of [Not] Self-Rejecting

Self-rejection: The process of writers completing a work and not believing their work to submit or publish in any medium; they don’t think it’s good enough.

The process for writers to develop self-confidence is on-going! Rejection is part the process, especially if you desire to publish work in a public medium.

Writing requires radical belief in self, and the developing a thick skin. Not everything you create. So, let me give you three things which will remind you to keep writing, and self-rejection is never going to be something of any use to you:

  1. You are the writer. You control the pace, tempo and content of the work. The decision to write, the decision to publish, the decision to pursue writing as a career or hobby is totally up to you! If you don’t believe you can, then you never will.

2. Know your lane. You must know the type of stories you want to write. You must be confident in what you want to share with the world, and know you have something to say! No matter the genre, the troupes mentioned, never think something ‘has been done to death’! It hasn’t been done by you. Since it hasn’t been done by you! Keep that same energy! You’ll need it.

3. Create. Share. Repeat. Sometimes getting some trusted people to read your work is a confidence builder! Another thing to be mindful of is the rich nature of writer groups on social media! Writers do well in community, despite the solo nature of our work. Brainstorm on the community posts, engage with other writers, and those dusty WIP’s share them people whom will be honest with you! In order for you to develop the stamina to deal with rejection (again, this comes with the territory), you have to become used to people reading your work and commenting on it. Good or bad. But the goal being at this step is to get used to writing, critique and feedback.

Self-rejection can be a mill stone around your creativity. It hinders and stymies. No one needs that as a writer. The people in your head need to be let out. Don’t make it harder them.

You can do it! Keep writing!

Push. Write. Repeat.

Writing, in my opinion, is one of the sexiest profession you can choose. The most seductive hobby you can persue. It is the most entricing thing you can begin.

Think about it.

There are romantic stories of writers all the time, all over the world, who have told you about the erotic nature of writing.

Being pulled out of sleep.

Writing until the hours where the sun is their only company.

Having a poem, its power, rumble through them until they find paper.

I, myself, have experienced all of these things. All of them. For that feeling, for this desire, for this lover like no other–I write. I push. I repeat. And so should you! I am a believer that writers are always writing, even when we aren’t actively writing.

We always have a couple things in the back of our minds. Writers are the secret students of the world! We observe and study and record everything. From that studying, of the world, there will always be something to work on or create. In the pursuit of the latest work, the new thing, the work to come there must be a push to find it! There must be a push to write it! You must be content with the balance of desire to create, and the process of that specific creating!

You must! You are a writer, it’s what you do.

So, do it.

The New Things

Being a writer is one of thee most maddening things I have ever done! For every project that I want to do, there are 4 others that spring up. They seduce me from the current work, and then I leave them–jilted and guilty –to return to the first love. Determined to finish what I started.

This is what writers do though, dear ones! We create! And in the fury of creating, we have these side loves that call to us. These things we start when the first love (read: current work) has us in a funky place with no way out. I mean, Octavia Butler wrote Fledgling as a side project because the other work she was writing was ‘too much’! Wri

The Secret Graveyards: Pencils, Files & Draft Drawers

I believe writing is a form of madness. I do. I suffer from it, and I have since age 8. I dream, I record. I am a witch born of storytelling, accents, dialects and alphabets. I conjure worlds and destroy them as I see fit. In that roux of creativity, here I am.

Yet, here in that lingering immortality just before me….I get scared too.

I see the pages, blank and endless and sometimes I–I just can’t. Sometimes I can only get to a certain part in a story or a WIP and…I stop. But rather than through that energy away, I put a pen on it…and put it in my draft-drawer. I do this in the hope –THE HOPE–I will return to it. I do it in the hope that I will have the strength to complete something that I started. I do it to remind myself the story isn’t over–I just can’t see my way clear yet. But once I do? I will find my way back to it.

There is a drawer in my desk that is stocked with notebooks, pens and other random office supplies. Within the graveyard of writing supplies, are my incomplete thoughts. There are beginnings, full and bright. There the ends of dreams, the beginnings of nightmares, and the lusts of my own flesh. All in this drawer, waiting for me…calling to me in times where I would be, rather be writing.

They call when I say I can’t write.

They persist when I escape the diligence of writing to tweet or post to Instagram.

They haunt when I forget to add to them…or say I don’t need to add to them. Or the biggest writer lie: “I’ll get back to it.”

I have so many stories to tell, and one life to tell them in. Yet, I know I may not…

Encouragement Pages-03/18/2020

Completing any work is hard. It is difficult, and the process to perfect is not real. The best you can hope for as you complete any WIP is contained, controlled chaos.

Today, I want you to remember the process to write is fraught with pitfalls, discouragements, and all matter of distractions! Once you acknowledge this, you can be more gentle with yourself.

Completing a WIP is akin to sailing a ship on the ocean–in a storm! When you write, the more often you write, the quicker you can drop anchor to stop the work from being lost–or set adrift!

Be vigilant, dear ones.

Keep at it.

Love & Ink,

JBHarris

To My Greatest Love

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To My Greatest Love:

I would be so lost without you. I am so sorry for never telling you how I feel–negating how I feel about you, with all earnest affection. Without pretense or apology. Minimizing it when I should be shouting it. But, I am strong enough-certain enough now–to tell you all that I have held for you.

It is because of you, I have not drowned in the waters life I has tossed me in and towards. You have been a buoy, a light and a consummate map. You have caught tears, brought me sight, and given me a love everlasting.

You have been there for me–when I did no know, nor see myself! You have been found by me, taken away from me, and whispered to me as only a love can in my darkest hours. You have held me together in the palm of my hand. There is no love I know so complete as I know yours.

You are the love of my life. There is no other love like yours. In moments where I could not find my way clear, when I had no more to give, when I thought I had lost you forever–you found me.

You made me yours all over again. Loved me until I could see or reach again. I will never abandon you again, my love. Never again will I doubt, cheapen or downplay our union. The world will always know we are one.

Thank you…language.

Always, JBHarris