On Writing: Conferences and Retreats

Last summer I traveled to Pennsylvania for a writing conference/retreat at Keystone College where I met Sonia Sanchez. It was a wonderful experience. For one, I drove myself. I travel quite a bit but never alone. In the summer I’m usually traveling with a pack of nine.I love big family vacations but it was great to drive in my car for six hours with just me and my thoughts.  Second, shaking hands with the awesome poet Ms. Sanchez was great but getting the opportunity to bond with other writers from across the country is inspiring. And last, I stretched out of my comfort zone which is something I’m always pushing myself to do and was proud of my little adventure, the things I learned, and awesome writers I met. I’m feeling the need to connect again…

Many cities offer these conferences and retreats across the country. Boston has one called Muse and Marketplace which I attended five years ago, just a day event because they can be pricey. Attending a three day event with food and board can cost up to five hundred dollars or more. Attending a full weekend is not in my budget this year so  I’m going to look around for next year.

Do any of you find encouragement by attending these events?

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On My Mind: It’s 3am

This is my witching hour I guess. I randomly wake up between 3 and 3:15am every morning. I was born Jan 3rd at 3:16am, I wonder if there is a connection.
Most times I run through a list of things I want to do that day and go back to sleep. Sometimes I write, read a book, or pull up a movie on Netflix.
Right now I have a silly Canadian horror series called Darknet running on the laptop. The. Acting. Is. Awful.

I’m reading a list of classes being offered by the Center for Women Entrepreneurs Providence. I was looking for a business planning class. Nothing in Providence but the Boston or Worcester office may have one. So finding one is added to my to do list…

Adding a bra fitting as well. This week I noticed my bras were a bit uncomfortable and I’m pretty sure I’ve been noticing this for awhile now. Yup, this is the random isht that runs through my head in the wee hours.

Thinking of ways to be more organized and productive during the week. I’ve been tackling two tedious task a day. The task that are small but I put off for no real reason other than I make it more difficult in my head. Once its done, I actually feel better than when I tackle the more complicated things.

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I wrote a post about a week ago about people supporting you.  It really does hurt when you see your circle get smaller of the people who are your ride and dies to the ones sitting on the sideline waiting to see you either succeed or fail.
Some surprise you.
Le sigh

I have some serious yard work to do in a few hours as well as power washing the house. I go back an forth about home ownership but this little house I bought on my own, for my children to grow up in has a serious soft spot for me. I don’t think I will ever sell this place. Ever.

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Off to read till I fall back to sleep.
Since its actually morning I’ll sign off with Good morning blogging community.

Have a wonderful Saturday!

Shahidah

On Interior Spaces: A Place To Write

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Remember when I said I work more productively when I plan, well I also work better when I have a quiet, clean, efficient space to create, pay bills, or think.

I am re-designing my home and one of the rooms that need an update is my office space. Although, I daydream of a whole room as my office, honestly I write just as well at  the dining room table than my desk, but I still salivate over cool, eclectic, and pretty creative spaces like these:

Eclectic-home-office-e1369403918932

home-office-blue-eclectic-home-office-wall-and-pink-wood-table-feat-twin-white-cabinet-feat-lamp-ingenious-home-office-in-eclectic-blue-home-office-desk-accessories-home-box-office-logo-home-office-744x1024This blue and pink is gorgeous

Lively-Eclectic-Home-Office-with-brick-wallsThese chairs are theee businessssss!

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white-console-desk  simple just hits the spot

contemporary-home-office White-eclectic-home-office Winsome-Timber-Frame-house-designs-Eclectic-Home-Office-Other-Metro

Not many distractions here and a poster of the world is ALWAYS a great idea for us daydreamers!

Writing is what is important. Doesn’t matter where you write or how pretty your space is just write.

On Daughters : #WCWs

My daughter is so fly. I know that is an incredibly old term, but she is the quintessential of flyness.

She is smart, intelligent, hard-working, and gorgeous. As she has grown older I have come to respect her opinion because she has what most young people don’t have: GOOD DAMN COMMON SENSE.

She’s spoiled but not a brat, my parents have a lot to do with that, but we just love her spirit and drive.

She is giving. Not selfish or mean-spirited but kind and thoughtful but by no means an angel. I wish.

There are days I feel I want to strangle her but it never outweighs my respect and love she deserves. Plus she makes a stuff chicken that is-

TO. DIE. FOR.

To all the daughters that make their mama’s proud- you will always be a #wcw just about everyday :)

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Her godson. I love that she can love someone else so completely and give so much of herself.

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She should be a natural hair icon!!

On Birthdays: Malcolm X

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How did I forget it was my favorite hero’s birthday today? le sigh…

I don’t know what this world or our community would be like if Malcolm had survived but I do very much wish he had lived long enough for me to understand him, march with him, and  feel his presence in the world.

A few things I love about Malcolm:

  •  He was always evolving. We all can learn and respect that one days situation does NOT have to be a lifetime situation. Malcolm evolved from a criminal to a world leader. Yes, world because people of color all over the world respect him.
  •  He was eloquent even when he was shredding someone to pieces. Rappers take note Malcolm used his words like swords without cussing or the N word and was the most powerful feared black man on the planet
  • He taught himself. When teachers told him he was not good enough because he was black he grew his intelligence on his own and learned. His mind didn’t shut down it kept seeking. We must know that not everyone wants us to succeed. It’s not their decision…it’s ours.
  • He was Muslim. When he fell out with Elijah Muhammad he took it upon himself to learn the religion. It was not a fad  or jailhouse religion for him.
  • He understood the need to be self efficient in our community.
  • His speeches are timeless. Ballot or the Bullet is on repeat in my house
  • FBI couldn’t catch him cheating….no shade just that when he turned his life around HE TURNED HIS LIFE AROUND.
  • Happy Birthday Mr. El Hajj Malik El-Shabazz!

    Here are a few of my favorite quotes:

    I believe in the brotherhood of man, all men, but I don’t believe in brotherhood with anybody who doesn’t want brotherhood with me. I believe in treating people right, but I’m not going to waste my time trying to treat somebody right who doesn’t know how to return the treatment.

    Be peaceful, be courteous, obey the law, respect everyone; but if someone puts his hand on you, send him to the cemetery.

    America needs to understand Islam, because this is the one religion that erases from its society the race problem. Throughout my travels in the Muslim world, I have met, talked to, even eaten with people who in America would have been considered ‘white,’ but the ‘white’ attitude had been removed from their minds by the religion of Islam.

    No, we are not anti-white. But we don’t have time for the white man. The white man is on top already, the white man is the boss already… He has first-class citizenship already. So you are wasting your time talking to the white man. We are working on our own people.
    Despite my firm convictions, I have always been a man who tries to face facts, and to accept the reality of life as new experience and new knowledge unfolds. I have always kept an open mind, a flexibility that must go hand in hand with every form of the intelligent search for truth.

    On Reading: Conception by Kalisha Buckhanon

    One of my goals this year was to read 52  books in different genres. The first genre was a horror by Stephen King but that is my happy zone. I love Stephen King and I loved Mr. Mercedes

    I moved on to self-help and my balloon kind of busted. It’s a genre I’m not a  huge fan of but I managed to read two books, however, not as enthusiastically as I did Mr. Mercedes- I ate that book up in a week.  Between reading for a real estate and business management classes I have basically avoided any pleasure reading. I’m kind of in need for something gripping. Last night I pulled out a novel I bought in January because I follow the author’s blog. I love her post and I have read a few story excerpts and I find her to be a truly talented writer. So last night after my class I wanted to take a bath and watch Moone boy on Hulu but grabbed her book Conception instead.

    OH. MY. GOD.

    Kalisha is a wonderful storyteller! So far she has showed a brilliant mastery with her words of description and character development. I know these characters and am anxious to see where they are going. I’m just thirty pages in and I’m hooked. I didn’t want to go to sleep but I started reading too late. This is one book that will become a classic in my family because if it keeps going the way it is going I will have everyone in my family read it.

    Please check out her blog NEGRESSION which has samples of her writing and I will do a complete review of Conception in the very near future. Like, next week because I’m pretty sure I will be done reading it. She has two other novels and I’m sure I will be grabbing them up as well.

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    On Waco: Policing and 2 Americas

    A McLennan County deputy stands guard near a group of bikers in the parking lot of a Twin Peaks restaurant Sunday, May 17, 2015, in Waco, Texas. Waco Police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton told KWTX-TV there were "multiple victims" after gunfire erupted between rival biker gangs at the restaurant. (Rod Aydelotte/Waco Tribune-Herald via AP)

    I guess in Waco, Texas they were ‘peacefully’ killing people so the police were not in fear of their lives.

    A man backs away as law enforcement officials close in on him and eventually detain him during protests over the death of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager killed by a police officer, in Ferguson, Mo., Aug. 11, 2014. The Federal Bureau of Investigation said on Monday that it had opened an inquiry into the weekend shooting of Brown. (Whitney Curtis/The New York Times)

    Black Man Open Carry Vs White Man Open Carry

    micI’m just going to rest this mic here…feel free to pick it up