Cultural Conversation Overview (June 2020)

Of course I would use Princess Shuri of Wakanda as my Patron Saint for this series!

Part of the job as a writer is to record the world around me. My job is to write down what I see, and what people may be afraid to say. There is nothing which should be off limits to my gaze, talent or input.

That’s not me being cocky. That’s me being a writer. That’s me realizing my words matter, and giving voice to things I believe are concerning. I am a writer whom is at the intersection of Black and woman. I move through the world differently! I move through the world both seen and unseen–all while keeping my pulse on those communities.

From that awareness, there is a miniseries that will start in June 2020! This miniseries will focus on some things that I have either read about, experienced personally, or have grown up with which I think I now have strength and time to discuss. What sparked this conversation was Black Panther.

How, you ask?

The talk–the Cultural Conversation as it were–was the WHITE dude saved Wakanda. When I watched Black Panther, I didn’t see it that way. I saw the true savior of Wakanda was Princess Shuri. From that boldness, I am ready for June 2020.

And should be too–you won’t have a whole lot of time to get ready. I promise you that.

May 2020 Is For Lil Boosie!

There is no secret to anyone that knows me that I love hip-hop. I do! And my favorite song to be amped to (aside from Swagga Like Us off T.I.’s Paper Trail), Wipe Me Down, by Lil Boosie! I promise that it is! I don’t know what about it makes me so happy, and wishing for my 20’s again, but it does!

With that reflection is mind, I had an idea for my miniseries for the month of May:

The title ‘Thinking I’m Grown’ is what I was told when I was growing up, especially after I started to express myself through what I wore or how I wanted to wear my hair. I cannot tell you how many times I heard “Oh, you think you grown?” I had no idea what that mean–and truly, looking age 40 in the face, I still don’t necessarily know! But, I’m about to take a stab at it.

This series starts Saturday, May 3rd. Like the miniseries in the past, there will be one post every Saturday until the cessation of the series on Saturday, May 31. Here are the topics:

May 3: Think I’m Grown: Shoulders (How I Stand)

May 10: Think I’m Grown: Chest (My Body And How I Accept It)

May 17: Think I’m Grown: Pants (Fashion and Style)

May 24: Think I’m Grown: Shoes (How I Move In The World)

May 31: Think I’m Grown: Wipe Me Down (Self-Acceptance)

See what I did there? You’re a smart cookie, I know you did. Make sure you follow this space. There is more, so much more to come.

National Poetry Month-30 Days Of Jaye

It’s April!

And it’s National Poetry Month! With that said, I’ll have at least one piece of original poetry posted for the next 30 days. Some things are from old English classes at my Alma Mater, some recent (2018 on) and there are some that are older (like 2004!) and in a collection known as Love Songs On The Unrequited (Volumes 1-3) available on Amazon and Kindle.

You love the kid’s work?

Follow this space. And always–support indie writers. Buy a book.

Love,

JBHarris

QUARANTINE BOOK LIST

In the middle of being hard at work building my own imaginary people and universes, I am taking time to catch up on my own reading. Since reading is one of the chief reasons I became a writer, I thought I would share my (quarantine) reading list. This is by NO MEANS the extensive TBR list! But this is something to keep your mind occupied!

Read and write!

You can do it!

-JBHarris

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Since you are already in, you might as well read something.

1.) Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson

2.) Kindred by Octavia Butler

3.) The Color Line by Tiffany Richardson

4.) The Well-Read by Glory Edim

5.) Dread Nation by Justina Ireland

6.) Deathless Divide by Justina Ireland

7.) Wild Seed by Octavia Butler

8.) Fledgling by Octaiva Butler

9.) The Mother Of Black Hollywood by Jenifer Lewis

10.) For Colored Girls by Ngtoske Shange

11.) The Sleeping Beauty Trilogy by Anne Rice

12.) Beloved by Toni Morrison

13.) The Good House by Tananarive Due

14.) Eloquent Rage by Dr. Brittney Cooper

15.) If Beale Street by James Baldwin

16.) Between The World And Me by Tah-Nihsi Coates

The Launch Into The Deep: YouTube

In my TS Madison voice: “IS IT ON?!”

So…I did it. I started a YouTube Channel! It is the most nerve-racking thing I have ever done. On this channel will be all the dope things you all love me for! The newest thing I saved only for YouTube is:

This is where I expound on an idea for about 10 minutes–just things that are on my mind, come across my desk or may just bother me in general. The One Minute Words which are on my professional Instagram will be there as well! There will even be a mentorship videos as well!

I am stoked. I am excited. There are already videos up! Follow and join the tribe. I even have cool name for the people that follow me: Oracles.

Updates, Musings and Email Lists

So, here is what’s up…

My Lovelies:

Don’t feel neglected, I have been so busy lately and clearly my plate (read: my jump drive). I found projects I forgot about, 2 manuscripts, and lot of random poems and essays. I mean I even started a YouTube channel! Grad school is becoming a reality, my MFA is shaping up, and I still have to be a mother of 2 Queens.

Whew!

So what I am going to do, is get back to it. What does that mean? Oh, that means content my dearest ones! That means there will be things which are going to be both exclusive, published and private. At long last, this means the mailing list is coming! And I’m working on 3 (yes, one less than 4, 1 more than 2) books! On top of a collaboration book I’m doing with some writergirls!

So…know three things.

1.) I love you all.

2.) More content is coming here (and on YouTube).

3.) New books are coming this summer. Pre-order information will be up Friday. Here the covers:

Nice, right?
(June 2020)

You know you wanna read it already! Very Alice Walker.
(July 2020)

Even thought it may seem that you won’t/ don’t see me, nothing is farther than the truth! I’m even working on the sequel/prequel to RUBY! Whew!

Know that I love you all with all my Black Girl Magic!

Stay Tune, beloveds!

Greatness is coming!

2020 Black History Contest- ‘I Am Black History’

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I am overjoyed to the announce the first annual I AM BLACK HISTORY Essay Contest!

The contest is open to 13-17-year olds, with the submission date opening February 3, 2020, and deadline being February 25, 2020 at 11:59 PM CST. Here is your theme:

Black history is on-going:  future and past. Describe a person (living or dead) or a movement within Black History that you admire or identify with (i.e., Ida B. Wells Barnett as an admired person; The Harlem Renaissance as a movement; resistance against apartheid in South Africa as a movement) and why. 

 

Here are the criteria:

-Essay should be between 2-4 pages (this is roughly 500-1000 words)

-Must be typed, double spaced, written in Microsoft Word.

One entry per child.

-All entries need to have name and contact information in the body of the email.

 

Now, the good part. The prizes:

First Prize:  $75 Amazon Gift Card

Second Prize: $50 Amazon Gift Card

Third Prize: $25 Amazon Gift Card

 

Entries should be mailed to iamblackhistory.ibf@gmail.com.

Winners will have their essays posted on the I Breathe Fire site, and read on the The Writers’ Block Podcast.  Decisions will be made on February 28, 2020. Winners will be notified through email (please make sure you have correct email address listed!). Gift cards will be sent via email on March 1, 2020.

Good Luck!

READY OR NOT! I FINISHED YEAR ONE!

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This week, I got the reminder from WordPress that I started this corner of the internet universe one year ago last week!

That indeed is something to celebrate!

With that, I am strutting into Year 2 a little more confident, a little more confident and a little more brash–not that I need help with that.

Thank you all for your love, support, and ever present readership.

Tell a friend so you can breathe fire, too.

Love Always,

JBHarris

Friends, Romans & Those Of The Growing Tribe

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Dearest Ones,

On the eve of NaNoWriMo, I come with cool announcements. At the pressing of the universe, I am setting up a mailing list in December. Why? The time has come dearest ones. It truly has.

December 2019 is the foretaste of all things [officially] JBHarris in 2020 going forward. So, here is what you can expect:

 

1.) More Writing.  This is is gimmie. The clip that I am on, I need the space. If you follow the email list, you will be abreast of all updates, new work and release information.

 

2.) Collaboration Info. As you all know I do not write in a vacuum. There are other writers I work with, and want to work with me. So, since you love me like you do, the best thing I could do is to let you see behind the scenes stuff! It’s already lit.

 

3.) Professional Stuff.  There are things that I am working on now that I can’t go into now, but I will next year. I will be freelancing and creating, of course. But there are other professional opportunities that are coming, being given, and that are being thrust upon me. Being apart of the mailing list will keep you abreast of everything.

 

I know that you’re thinking about what I’m going to name this Email list, and what I’ll call this emerging tribe of you beautiful people that follow me. Well, since I am a fan of Cersei Lannister, the Mother of Dragons. And the blog is I Breathe Fire., I’m toying with two of them:

Option 1:   Email list:  The Desk of JBHarris

 

Option 2:   Email List:  The Pen of JBHarris

 

Followers:  Raconteurs. Google it.  That or Dragons. Not sure yet. But watch this space, dearest ones. You ain’t seen nothing yet.

SABEM-The Playlist

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At what seems like long last, I have compiled the list for the SABEM playlist!

See what I came up with below-

 Follow your girl on a streaming platform

-Apple Music: HisGirlFriday38

-Spotify: ShesAGirlFriday

HisGirlFriday is a play on the movie with Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell. The name: His Girl Friday.

My maternal aunt used to call me a “Girl Friday”, and I thought it was much cooler than being called a secretary.

Enjoy dearest ones!

I so love new music recommendations.