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

Encouragement Pages-01/29/2020

Self-rejection is a slow poison.

It is a poison whose apothecary is familiar. Whom is familiar with their victims as well as their enemies.

But what happens when they are one and the same?

Every time you reject a story, a portion of your imagination vanishes. Every time you scrap a story because you’re scared to write it, more of you vanishes.

Rage against the dying of the light.

Poison is for those dying or marked for death.

Writing is a source of life.

With Love & Ink,

JBHarris

Encouragement Pages-01/24/2020

Be gentle with yourself today.

The work in progress is called this for a reason. The progress in this work can be incremental—but do it. No matter how small or insignificant.

Do the work.

Happy, loud or sad, but do it.

With Love & Ink,

JBHarris

Encouragement Pages-01/22/2020

Shameless plug to remind you to read.

Writers are readers, inquisitive about the world around them so they can create another. If you’re stuck in process of creating an WIP and become discouraged, take a break. Fill up that blank time with a book.

Sometimes the words of others, stir our own.

With Love & Ink,

JBHarris

Enouragement Pages-12/20/2019: The Grand What If (2)

Being a writer means you will/may always have questions. The toughest ones to answer always involve The Why.

Why do you write?

Why aren’t you writing?

Why are you afraid to write?

Regardless of genre, or length of project, you will have to answer these questions.

Sometimes once during the course of a work, sometimes repeatedly in the course of a day!

But they must be answered.

Moreover, they must be answered by you.

With Love & Ink,

JBHarris

Encouragement Pages-12/18/2019: The Grand What-If’s (1)

The end of the month—end of the year!—is in a matter of weeks.

To that observation, I leave you with this question:

What if you believed you could do it?

I mean it, what would happen you believed you could write the work you set out to create—independent of other people’s opinions or support?

Only you can answer this. And should do so immediately.

With Love & Ink,

JBHarris

Encouragement Pages-12/09/2019

“Let it stir…”

Stephen King says to let the story ‘reveal itself.’ To that I say, ‘let it stir.’

What this means is to let it develop. Let it brew. Let it come forth naturally—just like woman that’s pregnant.

Just like when you stir coffee or hot tea, making it just the way you like it.

Let it stir. Let it bubble. Let it brew.

The idea you have, the one you keep rolling around, or you aren’t sure about, follow it. Let it stir, let it stir you.

You’ll be amazed what you come up with when given when you’re patient with yourself.

With Love & Ink,

JBHarris

Getting Over It

Writing is hard. Writing is real hard. I wish that I could express to you–truly!–how hard this. Being able to pull something out of the nebulous creative ether and share that to other people?

It’s hard.

But what I want you to know something, and I will try my best not to sound conceited.

The cool thing about being a writer, is that not everyone can do it.

The hard thing about being a writer, is that not everyone can do it.

The impossible thing about being a writer, is that no everyone can do it.

For every work that you create, there will be a doubt. No matter how quick, not matter how long, no matter how infrequent. The doubt will be there. Almost like a too tight safety belt.

But, there is something to this. What I want you to do when doubt crops up is embrace it, not hold it. This is something that you will learn with time, and as you get comfortable writing.

Embrace the doubt= you realize doubt is there.

Not hold it= doubt will always be a weight, and it is not to be entertained long.

That is the thing about writing. You have to be able to believe you can do it, before you can ever do it. It is the doubt that allows you to still look at a work with some degree of respect–and realize that every piece, every work in project is your responsibility. To care for. And complete.Being a creative has a certain weight and heft to it. Some part of that creative is, does require a radical belief in self.

With that ability, do one thing for me: be grateful.

There are those of us along with journey to writing or creativity that hold on to doubt. Who forget that writing is not as natural for others as it is to us. Or, they allow the doubts of others to be projected on their own talents and cease to create anything. Or anything else.

But gratitude, that is the counterweight to doubting while creating. Your gratitude will allow and plow room towards what it is you want to create. Honor your talent. Honor your commitment.

Putting off the writing never makes it easier.

Taking your creativity for granted only makes you ungrateful.

An ungrateful writer is one most unpleasant to be around. Besides, there is nothing like a good bout of Writer’s Block to make one humble. Trust me.