It’s time for another edition of Currently!
With this feature, I share with you what I’m currently into hoping that you’ll find something that inspires you too. Since it’s February, I want to do a special Black History Month edition.
So let’s review what I’m currently watching, reading, writing, planning and loving.
I am always watching WAAAY TOO MUCH TV! So I won’t get into everything I’m binging. But I want to highlight one show – Black Cake on Hulu. I finished the book that the show is based on last month and then started the series, which I just finished a couple of days ago.
This TV adaptation of Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson is fantastic. I actually like most of the ways the show is different from the book. In both the book and the show, the exploration of Black identity, food and culture, and family will leave you inspired to create or cook or both!
Later this month, I’m heading to the movies to see Origin, which is based on Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson. Caste is HEAVY. But of course, a book that explores America’s unspoken system of human ranking would be. So I don’t expect to snack on popcorn and Goobers while I’m watching Origin. As stated on her website, “Caste invites us to discover the inner workings of an American hierarchy that goes far beyond the confines of race, class, or gender,” so I imagine Origin will do the same. Furthermore, as a writer, I appreciate that the film follows Wilkerson’s research and writing process.
I know this will be a difficult film to watch. But I also know it is a necessary film to watch.
I have a bad habit of trying to read multiple books at once and this often means I start books and never finish them. But let me share three of the books by Black women that I’m reading right now so you can add some of them to your TBR list.
She Memes Well: Essays by Quinta Brunson
This collection of hilarious, yet deeply personal essays by Abbott Elementary creator Quinta Brunson is the perfect read for my fellow writers and creatives. Yes, the book explores internet culture, as the title suggests, but it does so much more. Quinta delves into what it takes to pursue a dream and what it means to stay true to yourself and your culture in pursuit of that dream. I highly recommend listening to the audiobook. It’s read by Quinta herself which enhances the storytelling. I listen to audiobooks mostly in my car so it feels like Quinta is riding along with me making me laugh out loud as I travel down I-65.
Stop Waiting for Perfect: Step Out of Your Comfort Zone and Into Your Power by L’Oreal Thompson Payton
Though this book is for anyone who has struggled with perfectionism or imposter syndrome, L’Oreal (who is interviewed in my See Jane Freelance course, by the way) makes a point to specifically address some of the unique challenges that Black women face when it comes to self-doubt.
Featured in Good Housekeeping as one of 14 powerful books to read for Juneteenth, Stop Waiting for Perfect is an impactful read for any month of any year.
God Is a Black Woman by Christena Cleveland
Did you grow up imagining God as a white man? Yeah, me too. I’m currently going through the very difficult process of decolonizing my faith and looking to this book to help. Theologian, social psychologist, and activist Christena Cleveland weaves her powerful personal story with theological, historical, and social science research to dismantle the cultural “whitemalegod” and uncover the Sacred Black Feminine.
If you can’t find these books at your favorite local bookstore, head to my Amazon store for these and more books by Black women that I love. Purchases made there will help support See Jane Write.
I kicked off Black History Month with a Birmingham Times cover story. Birmingham Times is a respected local paper founded in 1964 to serve Birmingham’s Black community. This story is about Davenport & Harris Funeral Home, which has been serving the people of Birmingham since 1899, making it the oldest active funeral home in the state of Alabama, the oldest active family-owned business in the city of Birmingham and believed to be one of the oldest African American family-owned-and-operated funeral homes in the U.S.
I have some profiles of local Black women that I’m working on too.
My birthday is in a couple of days, so I’m planning a weekend of fun to celebrate including an artist date to the Birmingham Museum of Art, a massage, a staycation at Elyton Hotel, attending the grand opening of Herban Soul Café (a Black-woman-owned business) and going to an Edgar Allan Poe speakeasy event in Montgomery. No, Poe wasn’t a Black woman but it’s my birthday. I can do what I want.
If you’re looking for writerly ways to celebrate Black History Month, one way to do it is by supporting workshops hosted by Black women writers – like ME!
I’m also busy planning these workshops that I’d love for you to attend:
Galentine’s Day Self-Love Journaling Workshop
Tuesday, February 13 at 6:30 p.m. CT
During this fun journaling workshop we’ll celebrate our closest friendships while also exploring what it means to be our own best friend.
Personal Branding for Writers & Creative (Online Masterclass)
Sunday, February 25 from 4 to 6 p.m. CT
In this live masterclass, you’ll learn what a personal brand is and why you need one. Then you’ll get practical steps and strategies for building your writer platform and personal brand through social media, networking, content creation, community and more. This class features a live Q&A with noted music blogger Edward T. Bowser.
Purchase your ticket HERE
Get 50% off now through Friday, February 16 with the code EARLYBIRD
I’m loving the Lo Harris Black History Month collection available at Kohl’s (in-store and online). One of the gift sets includes a journal so, of course, I had to get that. The collection features some planners too.
Lo is a former student of mine and I helped her with some content for her award-winning website, so I make it a point to support her work – and you should too!
How are you currently into and how are you celebrating Black History Month?