Thank you to a group of North Atlanta youth mentors and advocates for inviting me to speak to a wonderful group of brilliant kids who are on their way to becoming amazing young writers! I had so much fun speaking and answering questions about how journaling can jump start your writing career.
We began our day at LPYG with a lively group of teens who are part of a youth mentoring group that focuses on building life skills. Today’s topic was about how journaling can help build writing skills. Most of the youth in the group did not keep personal journals. Most of them admitted that they had not given much thought to keeping a journal. I explained that journals are used to keep personal thoughts, ideas, feelings, memories and experiences that we hold dear.
The best part about keeping a journal is that you can write down anything you want and you do not have to share it with anyone if you do not wish to share what you’ve written. The teens seemed to like the idea of keeping a journal that they can be open with expressing themselves through words and language openly without fear of judgement. I brought a few starter journals for the teens to keep so that they can begin writing in journals. Some of them even said that they wanted to see if they could use the journals to write stories.
During the Q&A, I invited the youth to ask me questions about journaling and writing. There were a few interesting questions, but the one question that stood out to me the most was from a 14 year old girl named Shamiya. Shamiya said that she was interested in writing a memoir about her life when she grows up. She asked me, “If I write in a journal, will I be able to make it into a book about my life?”
I encouraged Shamiya to keep a detailed journal and write in it daily especially if she wants to write a memoir one day. A daily journal will hold memories that she may not be able to remember in the future. Writing in a journal can help with keeping your most sacred and cherished memories for you so that when you want to look back and reminisce or recall the memory to write your memoir, the memories will be there.
Everyone seemed to be happy with the idea of keeping a journal. Some of them began writing in the journals as soon as I handed them out. When I was asked to share something from my journal, I helped them to appreciate the privacy of a journal. I told them that the privilege of having a journal is so that you can keep your thoughts private until you’re ready to share. For example, when I had written in my journals as a teen, I did not want to share what I had written about my memories of my late best friend Holly and what it was like for me growing up with major depression. It wasn’t until I grew up and decided to write a book about surviving child abuse and mental health that I decided to share thoughts from my journals. It’s more relevant now today because now my book can actually help other people who are dealing with those same issues.
My hope is that the teens were inspired by my experience with journaling and how it helped me build my writing career. I hope that they will write in their journals even if it’s just to have a way to release their thoughts and feelings openly and freely. I look forward to following up with them and their mentors to see how they are using their journals.
Please visit my website to find out more about mentoring and speaking and to find out how you can book me to speak at your next event: http://www.feliciajohnsonauthor.com
Scared Silent by Mildred Muhammad is one of the most riveting true stories I’ve ever read. While I was reading Mildred Muhammad’s novel, I kept thinking to myself, there’s no way that this could actually be someone’s true life story. There’s no way that this could be real. In reality and in truth, this is a true story of a woman who overcame more in the years of her life than most of us could even imagine.
Mildred Muhammad tells her story of how she came through darkness into the light while married to the “D.C. Sniper”. John Muhammad was a killer, and she was married to this killer. Unbeknownst to her, she was his intended target. He wanted to kill her. Mildred Muhammad is a true survivor, a loving mother, and an advocate for women who are threatened by domestic violence.
Her story is inspirational and educational. There is much to learn about survival, the many forms of domestic violence, victims, true crime and the meaning of true love, self love in Mildred Muhammad’s novel. It’s an absolute page turner. I finished this book in just a couple of days. If you have some time and wish to learn about the true survivor behind the silence, pick up Scared Silent by Mildred Muhammad. I recommend this book to therapists, survivors of domestic abuse, and fans of true crime novels.
Scared Silent is available on Amazon.com – http://www.amazon.com/Scared-Silent-Mildred-Muhammad-ebook/dp/B002S5NOVM
Visit Mildred Muhammad’s website at http://www.mildredmuhammad.com
Have you ever received a letter from a dear friend that touched your heart? Have you ever read a story that was so emotional that you could not help but feel every word that was written?
I Choose Victory: Find Light In The Darkness Of A Life Changing Crisis by Haseena Patel is a novel that will make the reader feel. When I first started reading this book, it felt like a personal letter from a dear friend. Haseena Patel fills the pages with heartfelt encouragement to her readers. She encourages her readers with positive quotes from prominent writers, speakers, and influential public figures. One of my favorite quotes in her book was written by A.A. Milne that reads, “If ever there is tomorrow when we’re not together, there is something you must always remember, you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem and smarter than you think…” It’s a powerful message. And no wonder that Patel would use this quote in her book.
Patel’s book is based on dealing with family crisis. She tells of her experiences with helping her sister through a chronic illness that threatened her sister’s life. It’s a heartfelt story of struggle, positive change, growth and finding purpose in life through weaknesses and strength.
I’ve learned by reading Ms. Patel’s book that no matter what crisis you’re faced with, you can overcome. With hope and purpose you will get through it. You must choose to be victorious.
Hello friends! The winter season has begun. As the days seem to be darker and the air a bit colder, let’s keep in mind that it’s just the season. We can choose to keep our light shining bright within ourselves and share the warmth of love and caregiving with others. The winter season is hard for me because of the short days and dreary clouds. However, I choose to eliminate negativity to enable positivity for myself and to share with others. Remember to love always and love deeply with sincerity. It will come back to you either way.
My dear friend Athena Moberg provided me with an ARC of the new anthology series Discovering True #NoMoreShame Project Volume 1. Athena is a contributing writer to the anthology. Her story short story in the book is called Unwanted. Unwanted is a hauntingly terrifying account of a young girl’s abuse. Reading Athena’s story moved me to want to read the rest of the stories in this anthology. Discovering True #NoMoreShame Project Volume 1 is one of those anthologies that really touches a reader to the core. This anthology is made up of a collection of true stories written by real survivors of childhood sexual abuse. It is raw, clear, frightening and painful to read at times. I found strength in reading some of the accounts of the survivors. Their journeys to healing and the process to be able to write and put their stories out there is enlightening and encouraging. This is a must read for families and friends of survivors who want to understand what their loved ones may have gone through. Hope can found within the pages of this book. Other amazing writers with incredible stories included in this anthology are Rachel Thompson and Bobbi Parish.
It is available on Amazon Kindle for $4.99. Pick up your copy today and please feel free to share your thoughts by leaving a comment below!