Welcome!

I have always loved writing, and I know that skill of verbal, written expression is not easy for everyone. The goal at Shekinah Glory, LLC is to make that process less stressful.  Feel free to contact with me with any questions you may have and the writing needs you would like met.

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Thank you for coming by!

Jennifer P. Harris

Editor/Founder-Shekinah Glory Writing Services

 

When The Dam Won’t Break

There is nothing more stressful to see the words in your head and can’t get them to your hands. Don’t confuse this with writer’s block. This is what I call The Hitch.

The Hitch differs from Writer’s Block in one way:  accessibility.

Writer’s Block is the drought; there is a drought. There are no words.

The Hitch is when there are words, and somehow, someway, there are none.

Think of it in the case or form of the above image. The water is representative of the writing talent, the mastery of words as it were. Sometimes in all our rush to create, we don’t take time to listen to what the waters of talent are saying. We don’t pay attention to whether this is a drought or a hitch.

The Hitches I fear more than Writer’s Block. Why? You can almost explain it or explain it away if necessary. The Hitches are assassins. They rob you of cohesion to thought, creative insight and mock you when you try push through.

The Hitches are imps of the creative process.

In including this quote from Stephen King, it is your inoculation against The Hitch. It acknowledges, and identifies yourself as you are:  a writer. A slayer of words and pages. You have worlds to create and people to direct! You must break the dam!

This is done by confronting whatever it may be that has stopped you from going forward. This can be defined by three topics:

  • Fear
  • Doubt
  • Exposure

 

Fear. Margaret Atwood says fear comes to writers because we indeed are afraid of something. What are you scared of? The worst thing that could happen is either people not read what you wrote, or they read everything you wrote.

 

Doubt. This rears its ugly head when you think what you  are creating isn’t good enough, or not worth your time because ‘someone else wrote it.’ This may be true, but you haven’t done it! You haven’t created it. The people in your head haven’t lived it! Let the people in your head out!

 

 

Exposure. There are things, stories, appetites that writers roll around which may be alien to what you may be used to writing. That linguistic trepidation  is normal. The choice then becomes–will you chase after the thoughts? Will you indulge the strength of your imagination? I’ll give you a hint:  YES. This is the beauty of a free write and other writing tools in your tool kit.  You can write down what is in your head–and never show it to another living person. Then, when you are ready, you can take that file or those pages and make an entire world. Which people will read.

 

Your blank pages are waiting on you. Don’t keep them waiting long.

 

 

[images from Google; screenshot from YouTube Channel, BioGraphics]

From The Crates

LEAVING:

(c) October 2015 JPHarris

The voices are aging. The forebarers that lit the path through the igniting of thought are leaving towards the same light that sent them.

In contemplation, I find myself going to these people: my mother Bessie Bush, Toni Morrison and Maya Angelou. It was my mother whom introduced me to the worlds books hold, and the solace they provide. In my darkest moments, she would ask me, “Are you still writing?” I would answer her as my situation dictated. I recognize there will be a day where I will no longer have benefit of her voice on the other end of a phone. Despite past contention, she has been graced to be my mother. I will need her until the Lord will need her Home. I thank her for being my mother when it would be easier not to be.

Anyone that knows me understands my love for the other 2 aforementioned women. With the nation losing our grandmother Oracle in Maya, I grappled with that sense of loss-I have enjoyed her work since age 9 when my mother gave me her copy of I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS. All we, yes we, have left of her, is what she left: her letter and voice.

Toni Morrison is 84. The same age as my grandmother whom would be 86 this year. I found Toni Morrison in high school and was rapt with her tone and description of anything. I knew then, this gift of words and being a writer, was indeed a craft. Indeed a craft. There will too be a day where the world will only have her letter…and voice.

The Word of God says “Without faith, it is impossible to please God.” In this space, I commit these intangibles back to Him seeing as He is the giver of all good gifts. In that process, in the beginning of the becoming and faith in its end, I believe a portion of my legacy will be left to treasure in letter and voice.

See mom, I am still writing.

When The Paper Is Empty

Think of writing as an ocean, ebbing and flowing. There are times where there is a lull in writing. There is a time where the words aren’t coming or won’t come.

The paper or screen lays there like a blank, whitewashed catacomb. It is the scariest thing to a writer. It’s not writer’s block. It’s a quiet, the lull…the ocean moving away from the shore.

The ocean is your talent, gift, the ability to create with pen and paper. The shore is the connection of idea, talent and availability. Creativity flows in cycles be seasons. There are times when the flow is seamless and writing is easy.

The tidal waves are what I live for! The ideas that flow and crash. The ideas that come out of nowhere and everywhere! There is the calm, soothing waves after you finish a work.

But the lulls? As hard as that is, they are scary and quiet. They are these desolate places where you try and push back to the shore. And if enough time has passed, you look for the shore. You look for anything that has life to it or shows life on that shore.

The scarier part still, during this lull, you think you may never get back to it.

Fight the lulls! You do that with rest, time and learning to swim, as it were. Not everything is a novel, or a blog post. Some things are just meant to be noted. Recorded. What you catch during the lulls crafts your ship, which will always take you back to shore.

Sometimes, you have to tread water…even in the ocean. What you catch will keep you afloat.

[Image screenshot from YouTube Channel, BioGraphics]

Empty Pages & Empty Pens

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There is a fate worse than writer’s block. It’s empty pages–and having nothing to say.

It is this  feeling that everything is still. Everything is quiet. There is nothing in your imagination that is stirring. That stillness is disquieting.

Audre Lorde said that this time comes for all writers. This lull, this disquiet,  where the the words don’t come–when writing is like breathing she says. I make mention of this in my book, WriteLife. Click here to get a copy.

Writing is a demanding mistress, beloved.

To chase it with power and passion, there will come the still moments. The moments when touching the gift seems further than it ever was. You have to know this, prepare for this.

The duration for this is unique for every writer. For me, it came after a traumatic breakup. The lull was three years and more. It was only when I was in a healthy place again did the words return.

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I believe this is the secret fear all writers have. It’s different than the recovery you need, or give yourself after completing a book. It’s beyond writer’s block. It’s not a block at all–that’s just it. It’s a barrenness. Having everything and nothing. Having the desire to say–nothing. Yet, as a writer–you wanna say everything!

Madness.

I wish that I could tell you a tip or tool to get through this certain scary part of your writing career. Yet, I don’t.

What I will tell you is this, which is scary in itself:  embrace the lull.

That’s right–EMBRACE the lull. It will come. I don’t know any writer–whether they be a newbie, practicing amateur, indie author or a NYT Best Seller–whom hasn’t had a lull. They happen.

What you can do is enjoy the time you aren’t writing. Catch up on your sleep. Learn to garden. Take more walks. As a writer, you are called to record the world. This means every now and then you have to live, to develop, your life beyond creating the lives you create for the people in your head.

 

[images from Quotefancy and Google]

The Intangible: The Belief In You

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In all the encouragement you have found this month, the one thing you need to remember is this. There is no magic ingredient for success, no key, no secrets to tell. The only secret I can give you is to look in a mirror. You are the secret ingredient.

You are the key.

You are the magic.

You are it.

 

The rescue you want is in your reflection and fingertips. You are the intangible. You are the hero of this story. Always remember this.

As a writer, you will have bouts of self-doubt to the point of it crippling you. The doubt reaches into the innermost parts of you and sets every thing you know your talent can bring you on fire–and makes you watch.

Remember your why.

 

Only you know why you write, and you have all the power you need inside of yourself. Unless you believe you can write, you never will. Unless you believe you can write, and determine that you will write, there is no inspirational book or blog which can help you. There must be the inner belief that resonates, catches fire in order for you to continue on this grind. You can do it if you believe you can.

 

If you believe you can, you’re right.

If you believe you can’t, you’re right.

 

It’s a process. Everything you do towards your writing, if this is what you want, determines the width and breadth of what you demand of yourself. If you want to write, you’ll write. If you don’t, you won’t.

The crux is what do you want to do more:  quit or keep going?

 

 

[image from Google]

 

With All You Write: Learn More, Read More Than That

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Writers are readers.
I say it again:  writers are readers.

The most interesting thing about a writer, aside from their talent should be their libraries. Their reading lists; the recommendations they have; even book reviews. A good writer should always have a book they are reading, about to read or recommend you should be reading.

Reading is part of being a part of the world. It’s apart of observing the world. It’s a part of being a writer.

How else you can you see what your comrades in your genre are doing unless you read?

How else can you expand or flip what is seen as classic and tried unless you read?

When you’re bored and NETFLIX, HULU and YouTube no longer stimulate you (and you can no longer use that as an excuse not to write), it may do you well to take a book to relax–or further escape.

You should be reading just as much as you write. Audible and audiobooks count. You should still have a desire to read, still have favorite writers and genres!

Reading helps you to hone your craft!

 

Don’t trust a writer that doesn’t read.

A writer that doesn’t read is a writer you cannot discuss anything why their own talent with or the lack thereof. A writer that doesn’t read, that doesn’t see the need (or fun for that matter) to read is someone I can’t associate with.

A reading-writer is one that is serious about the craft and improving talent through the force or will and time. Reading feeds the imagination, fuels it. That fuel is needed to stretch you, giving width and breadth to what you command naturally.

Talent in one thing.

Gift is another.

Work fuels both.

Get to work.

 

 

[image from Google]

October Theme: Writing Horror

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The theme for October will be something some may find frighten everyone whom writes:  loss of the gift, or believing the gift or talent is gone.

This is going to a hard one, and it’s going to be a little more personal. We’re going to delve into some of the things that hinder, stop or halt writing.

I invite you all to chime in, be honest and transparent.

The only way to get through this type of fear is in community.

Buckle up, it’ll be a bumpy ride–be we’ll make it.

 

 

With Pen & Ink,

JBHarris

Believe The Blank Pages

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In on of the social media commercials for the Masterclass series of writing classes, James Patterson holds up a blank legal pad, flush with lined yellow paper, says “This is the enemy:  the blank page.”

I concur.

The blank pages are seducing, chaotic, frightening and all-consuming. There is something about a blank page that will either draw you in to the world you wish to create or push you out, tricking you out of your imagination. Empty pages, also, will draw you in, or they will make you curse them out!

There is no high like a blank page you slay with ink from your own hand.

There is no low like believing you can’t fill a line, or a page, thinking what is in your head is not worthy to come out–or may never come out.

However, I come to you to tell you this.

Believe the blank pages.

 

What this means is  just that; believe the blank pages are just what they are.

Blank. They are blank pages.

No more, no less.

The blank pages wait for you–not you for them.

You choose to fill them or not.

You choose to continue the story or to end it all.

 

You are the master of all these pages, all these pages wait for you…

 

Fear not. Blank pages die with ink and on pens…

Bend your blank pages.

 

[image from Google]

Webinars & In-Services

 

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The first Inside The Writing Lab Writing Workshop was held in August, and from that success the next sessions will be held quarterly. Here are the next few workshop dates (these dates are in-person event):

  • Saturday, November 17, 2018
  • Saturday, February 23, 2019
  • Saturday, May 25, 2019

 

The workshops will have a $25 registration fee, which will include a copy of Bend Blank Pages which can be purchased on Amazon. You can purchase your own copy here.

The workshop will be about two hours, and is a safe place to talk about writing, including drafts, brainstorming and any other writing reservations you may have. If you would like to register for the upcoming class/webinar, please email sgwritingservices@icloud.com, putting Writing Workshop in the subject line. The registration can be paid in advance to PayPal, using sgllc.1038@yahoo.com. Please leave your name, and if you will be bringing a guest. The meeting area can accommodate  20-25 people.

The webinar will be on this site or Teachable.

 

The workshops are a time of networking, brainstorming and above all, writing. I look forward to seeing you!

The Weapons Of Your Warring: Build Your Vocabulary!

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Writing is work. If you follow this space, you know this. You know that I pull no punches in regards to this craft. This post will be no different.

You only get better at writing, by writing. There is no quicker way, there is no secret, there are no ways to be a writer without writing. One of the ways your get better as a writer is to increase your tools. The essential tool every writer has is your vocabulary.

Build it.

Push it.

Develop it.

 

One of the quickest ways of increasing or strengthening your vocabulary is reading. Any word you come across–look it up! I know, I know. Very rudimentary, extremely low tech, but it works. That word, start to use in conversation. Know that it means, and write it down. The other way? Dictionary app.

The Dictionary App is on of the quickest ways to build your vocabulary! There is a option this app has where you can subscribe to The Word of The Day. Everyday, you can learn a new word, or even look up the etymology of words–especially helpful for expanding your vocabulary horizontally.

Case in point. Let’s take the word witch. The archaic word for witch is beldam. This word, beldam, is also a word for an old woman or a hag–hag is another word for witch. See how that works?

Good writers are good readers. Good writers have an arsenal of words to build words and create.

Don’t fear it–build it.

 

Happy Writing.