Giving Fear A Voice

scared disney pixar GIF by Disney

Fear is scary.

We all have something in our lives that we’re afraid of. And as you read this, your mind may drift to the fears you’re struggling with right now.

Fear comes in all shapes and forms and one person’s fear is no greater than anyone else’s fear.

Fear is fear. Plain and simple.

For some, embarrassment and/or shame stops them from speaking about what scares them while others seek refuge in fear as a means to stay safely in a quiet corner with Mr. Status Quo. Either way, fear keeps us from ever knowing what joy and beauty could be waiting around the corner.

Giving a voice to fear makes it less scary, especially when you realize that you aren’t alone.

And when the fear is less scary, the more power you feel to do something to about it.

©2018 Marquessa Matthews

 

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Being Authentic Online

Photo credit: DJOtaku via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA

My fear of being authentic on this blog died a long time ago.

After some trial and error, making choices about what I would and not write about and being cautious in general, I’m as authentic as I can be in this space, though:

  • I don’t write about my work life;
  • I limit what I share about my family; and
  • I wait and breathe before writing about current events that get deep under my skin, if I write about them at all (though recent currents events make my fingertips itch.

But I was thinking…

Can a writer truly be authentic if they have to place limits on what they say?

Then, I came across the answer in this TinyBuddha article:

“Authenticity doesn’t have to mean complete transparency, but it does mean acknowledging what you really think and feel. Very rarely does a person think and feel only things that align with a polished online persona.”

Well, I’m not interested in having “a polished online persona”, at least, not at this point in time.

I’ll just continue striving for “authenticity” by sharing the times when my inner voice escapes my lips, I suffer from episodes of midnight madness or when I invite you to take a seat with me at the family dinner table.

For you writers and bloggers, how authentic do you feel you can be online? 

All Rights Reserved ©2017-2018 Marquessa Matthews

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How Long Have You Gone Without Doing It?

Photo credit: agahran via Foter.com / CC BY

(Updated repost)

Actually, I’m totally not blogging this…

For years, I posted daily and even had a blogging schedule.

Those days are gone.

Right now I’m just going with the flow.

Whatever.

Whenever.

Random.

Not-so-random revamped posts.

I’m no longer obsessed with having a blogging “streak”.

What’s the longest you’ve gone without writing creatively or blogging?

M  xoxo

 

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Don’t Be A Jerk

no nope nah black girls black girl

http://giphy.com/gifs/blackgirlmagic-mhp-melissa-harris-perry-3oEjHYuwHzWUW4uses

Your blog is where you express yourself, offer your perspective and invite readers into your world.

When readers agree with you, you feel a sense of satisfaction that they understand what you are saying. And even when readers disagree with you, you’re okay with it because they’ve explained their point of view in a respectful manner.

But what do you do when a reader leaves you a comment telling you that your point of view is wrong, stupid and that you have no idea what you’re talking about?

I was reading a blog where the post was related to “you know what and you know who” and some of the comments from one specific reader were ridiculously rude. I should also add that the blogger was simply giving their perspective in a very non-offensive manner and that it was obvious that the reader did not take the time to read the entire post…

Okay, it’s no surprise that politics, racism, sexism and discrimination against specific groups are topics where people get passionate about getting their point of view across.

But I was astounded at how this blogger choose to keep “engaging” with that reader’s nasty comments and personal attacks…a reader who truly did not fully read the entire post.

Look, everyone has a right to speak their truth, no matter how “alternative” or diametrically opposed it may be to your way of thinking.

But no one has the right to be disrespectful or nasty towards you.

My finger will never hesitate to click on Spam, Trash and/or Block if a comment disrespects me, another blogger in my comments section, a certain group or an entire community of people.

I don’t know about you but I have no interest in wasting precious time, energy or words to entertain those who are disrespectful towards others.

tamar braxton tamar aint nobody got time for that

http://giphy.com/gifs/tamar-braxton-aint-nobody-got-time-for-that-rX9dPaJHRJt7i

If you disagree with a blogger’s point of view and want to comment, do it in a mindful and respectful way. Use your words in conjunction with your brain and try to clearly explain why you disagree.

If what you read truly gets under your skin, skip to another blog or just “unfollow”.

And if you’re itching to be rude and disrespectful, don’t bother commenting at all. It’s not worth your time arguing with “hate”. Spend that time promoting “love” on your own blog.

Respect usually begets respect and the only place nastiness will get you is nowhere.

Have you ever had that experience on your blog?

All Rights Reserved ©2017 Marquessa Matthews.

Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

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No Creative Flow

I’ve been re-blogging quite a bit lately.

No, I don’t have writer’s block. Thankfully, I have never suffered from that disease. With a notebook full of ideas and two novellas in need of some TLC and beta reader feedback, I could easily keep myself busy.

But I don’t feel like writing.

Since I’ve gotten back from my holiday last month, it feels like EVERYTHING around me needs 100% of my attention – RIGHT NOW or YESTERDAY. And my post-vacation drama trauma set the downhill tone for this past month.

I can’t catch my breath and the harder I try to keep up with everything, the more it feels like I’m getting nowhere fast with the things I want to do and need to do.

Everyone suffers from stress but when it’s your stress, you feel like you’re drowning.

Writing usually relieves my stress but being too busy to write, the stress is accumulating and making me feel blah.

And feeling blah means that I have no creative flow.

And no creative flow means that I don’t feel like writing.

Blah…

It’s like a stupid catch 22.

Blah…

What do you do to get back into your creative flow?

 M  xoxo

 

 

Power And Control

credit to and image found at: http://www.thehotline.org/is-this-abuse/abuse-defined/

I always try my best to bring a certain level of realism to my fiction.

So when I speak about domestic abuse, I often do it in a slightly subtle way. I want you to think about situations you have experienced or that someone close may have confided to you. And from the comments I’ve received on past fiction, many of you know the signs…

The way he accuses you of lying when you simply forget to mention something trivial, how he thinks he has the right to comb through your text messages and web browser history, the third degree you get if you are a few minutes late, how he tells you that no other man will ever want you and best of all, how he purposely creates unnecessary conflict to alienate you from your loved ones…

Those are just a few of the red flags.

A while back, watching a Grey’s Anatomy episode (Season 14, episode “1-800-799-7233”) and a powerful scene where Joe warns a woman to stay away from her ex, it reminded me of my “Woman to Woman” piece (which I re-titled for a challenge at Christmas).

My fiction piece may not be as riveting as the Grey’s scene below but the message is the same: “When your man’s former flame warns you and she has nothing to gain, listen very closely with both ears, walk away and don’t look back. Because you deserve better.”

Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs below. No copyright infringement intended. I simply want to bring attention to domestic abuse and how important it is to listen to other women’s warnings.

I Wear My Sunglasses At Light

I’m guilty.

The only time I wear sunglasses is when I’m on the beach and my reason has nothing to do with the glare of the sun, UV rays and eye protection.

When I wear sunglasses, it has everything to do with people watching.

I don’t mean it in a creepy-stalker-kind-of-way like the guy I wrote about in that other post. I’m talking about the subtle and perfectly sneaky way to observe people’s interactions, body language and conversations that are within earshot.

And no one is really the wiser if you do it the right way.

Sunglasses on, nose in book and ears wide open.

The kind of observations that get your imagination pumping, that have you making up stories about the people around you, pushing you to decipher the relationships between them. The kind of observations that leaves you with questions like:

How is it that this mother and daughter duo have matching plastic surgery? Did they go under the knife together?

Mother and daughter with matching plastic surgery All Rights Reserved ©2017 Marquessa Matthews

This couple looks all lovey dovey but what secrets are they keeping from each other?

What secrets are they keeping from each other? All Rights Reserved ©2017 Marquessa Matthews

What’s the story behind this woman’s back tattoo? Does she regret it now that she is older?

Why did she get that tattoo? All Rights Reserved ©2017 Marquessa Matthews

Who was sipping on this coconut before they abandoned it on the beach? Or did it wash up onto the beach after being out in the ocean?

Whose coconut was this and how did it get here? All Rights Reserved ©2017 Marquessa Matthews

Yes, I am guilty of wearing my sunglasses to seek out story ideas when I’m on the beach.

But as a writer, YOU are guilty too.

Whether it’s on the beach, while sitting in a coffee shop, at the hair salon or on the train…I know that you do it too because as writers and readers, we observe, ponder, imagine and create tales to entertain ourselves.

But have you ever thought about who is watching you?

Images and content ©2017 Marquessa Matthews. All Rights Reserved.

 Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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