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Why You Should Attend Black Writers Weekend 2018

Tamika Newhouse

When Tamika Newhouse started the African Americans on the Move Book Club (AAMBC) in 2008 she had no idea it would eventually lead to her hosting Black Writers Weekend, an annual event that is not to be missed by African American writers and bloggers.

“I stumbled into creating the online community,” Newhouse says. “I wanted to be part of a book club but I was in a new city, I didn’t have any friends, and I thought it would be pretty weird for a grown woman to walk up to other grown women and say ‘Hey, I like to read books. Do you like to read books? Let’s read books together.’”

So she started a MySpace page and created an online book club of her own, one that focused on reading and discussing the work of African American authors. She quickly realized that there were many black writers out there not getting the attention they deserved. So, in 2009 Newhouse launched the AAMBC Literary Awards in San Antonio, Texas to recognize and honor black writers. In the years following awards ceremonies were also held in Chicago and Baltimore. In 2015 the event grew to include a red carpet ceremony and was held in Atlanta. This marked the beginning of Black Writers Weekend.

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A Birthday Note to Self

Dear Javacia,

As you turn 37 today I want you to enter this new year with this reminder: You are enough.

You are enough because you are fearfully and wonderfully made.

Your worth is not determined by your blog, your business, your byline or even the work you do in your classroom. You are enough.

Your worth is not determined by the number of miles you run or the number of pounds you lose. You are enough.

Your worth is not determined by the things you have or even the things you have done. Your worth is determined by who you are and you are enough.

So go on and celebrate another year on this crazy, beautiful earth. Go on and make your 37 for 37 list. Go on and go after your goals.

But, as you chase your dreams, do not forget that you are enough.

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Member of the Month: Marliceia Chavers

Many people in Birmingham know Marliceia Chavers as the talented makeup artist behind the beauty brand Marliceia Chavers Artistry. Others may know her as the soulful songstress who often shows off her vocal skills at local lounges. But now Marliceia is striving to make her mark in another arena — lifestyle blogging. Or perhaps I should say “lovestyle” blogging, which is what Marliceia calls her brand of blogging. On November 1, 2017, Marliceia launched Love Marliceia, which chronicles her self-love journey and strives to help readers embark on a self-love journey of their own.

Since launching her new blog, Marliceia has not only been posting and promoting consistently but has gotten the attention of other bloggers, too. She was recently featured on the site Girlfriend’s Budget, where she wrote about how self-love affects your money management.

For these and many other reasons, Marliceia is the See Jane Write Member of the Month for February.

Let’s learn more about her and her “lovestyle” blog. (more…)

28 Days of Grace: A Self-Care Challenge

“Caring for myself is not self-indulgence,

it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.” – Audre Lorde

It’s the first day of the month and thus the day I usually share my goals and plans for the month. But I’m doing things differently for February.

Inspired by See Jane Write member Jessica Furniss of Spiffy Eats & Giggle Water, this month I will be focusing on self-care. During the monthly virtual group coaching session that I offer members, Jessica mentioned that it would be great to challenge the Janes to treat themselves to at least one act of self-care every day for 28 days. I loved the idea!

My word for 2017 was “grace” and I’ve mentioned before that my word for this year is “faith,” a word I chose after reading a post by entrepreneur Maya Elious in which she wrote: “They say faith without works is dead but work without faith is dead, too. Too often we WORK for love and WORK for success and WORK WORK WORK. But unless we BELIEVE and have FAITH that God truly wants to see us win, we will always lose.”

It will take faith to give myself grace this month. It will take faith to believe that I can make time for self-care every single day and still somehow find time to work on my book, my blog, and my business and prepare for my TED Talk. But I believe I can and I believe I am worth it.

And so are you.

I invite you to join me in 28 Days of Grace: A Self-Care Challenge. Together we will commit to at least one act of self-care every day for 28 days.

Here are 28 ideas to get you started:

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How to Handle Overwhelm

I have spent most of this month completely overwhelmed and it’s completely my fault.

I came into 2018 with a plan.

I know that I am at my best when I am laser focused on a goal. So this year I planned to set just 4 major writing, blogging, and business goals (in addition to a few personal goals) and I would work on one per quarter.

But the excitement of the New Year went coursing through my veins and settled into my bones and I LOST MY MIND. I decided I would do ALL THE THINGS all at once.

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