The Focus For June – Mixmoir

Mixmoir Day 1.

For the past few months, I’ve been managing to turn up here at this blog daily.

I’ve been sharing my obsessions and you’ve been following along. Thank you for sticking with me.

June cannot go by without me attempting to continue the tradition/ challenge/ focus. And I think this is going to be the toughest yet!

There’s some magical energy that comes along at the beginning of each new month that I’ve just got to dive into and ride the wave to where ever it may take me. It’s about surrendering to the process and trusting that it will not lead me astray.

So what is the focus for June. It’s Mixmoir Time.

What is ‘Mixmoir’? This is the new name I’ve come up with for my mixed-genre memoir which I’ve been trying to write now for 4 or 5 years, I think. And I am writing it. That’s no lie but sometimes I’m creating more words/pages/pieces than others. I allow fear and distractions and that sense of failure to get in the way of me showing up and completing the damn thing.

At the back end of 2021, I put in for an Arts Council England, Developing Your Creative Practice grant to receive the time, space and money to complete this beast. As there has been no announcement of success here, you will know that I was not successful. Competition at this point for public funding is fierce. And to be honest, I’m not really sure if I was feeling the application.

Also with hindsight, now in June 2022, when this project was due to be complete, I’m pleased that I didn’t receive the funding because 2022 has been a year of tribulations so far. Knowing that I’d have to deliver on the completed manuscript at the end of this month would have been too much pressure with everything else that’s been happening. I actually feel grateful that I’ve had a flexible start to 2022, with me being more or less in control of how I’ve been spending my time. The bank balance might not be in agreement but there is much more to life than making money. Peace of mind, health, practicing ::SLOW:: and ::CARE:: have been taking priority and I’m not complaining.

So what to expect for the month ahead?

Well nothing is set in stone but expect extracts from the Mixmoir, reflections and musings on the practice of slow writing and the process of creating a mixed-genre creation. I’ll also be pulling a card a day while working with Mariëlle S. Smith, Fleshing Out The Narrative: A 31-Day Tarot and Journal Challenge for Writers. This is hoped tp give me some further focus not only on getting some words on the page but also to go behind the scenes and shed some insight on the reasons for writing this Mixmoir and why this form and what I hope to achieve through it’s completion.

The deck I’d be using to support this journey is The Earthcraft Oracle Deck by Juliet Diaz and Lorriane Anderson and illustrated by Daniell Boodoo-Fortune. This is such a beautiful deck with messages/ wisdom/ guidance which support my continuing connection with Mother Earth. And what better deck to use that this as isn’t the Mixmoir exploring my relationship with nature? It all makes perfect sense and will hopefully aid a fruitful and productive month of writings and musings and happenings.

I hope you with stick around and join me. #onwards.

::REST::

I just posted this over on my Patreon page for supporters, but I through it was relevant to post here. These are the revelations my visual journaling practice through up!

Visual Journal Spread – 22/05

Hey hey hey

How you doin’?

Me, I’ve been hitting on myself hard. Berating myself for spending last week in a stupor of low energy and slow pace productivity.

The practice of ::SLOW:: accompanied with the practice of ::CARE:: was not being practiced last week.

I could start shouting, ‘Shame on you, Sheree.’ But then I’d just be repeating the no compassion, no grace, no patience attitude and treatment towards self of last week.

Do you ever learn, Sheree?  Are you just circling the same old wounds and territory? Are you just right back in the same spot as before?

Nah man!

I’m not circling, I’m spiralling ( in a good way).

On this healing journey back to self, the pathway is a spiral. Yes there’s circling involved but with each new rotation I’m further up and further in, deeper into the exploration and becoming.

It’s like going up a mountain when you reach a vantage point. You get a better lay of the land as your vista opens up. You’ve got more data to play with moving forward/ upwards/ sideways/ and sometimes backwards. But you’re not in the same position as before because you have that experience, thoughts and feelings, events and reflections that have come to pass in the interim.

My takeaway therefore from last week is, ‘When you know you have a busy week ahead, Sheree darling, put in the diary rest and recovery for the week after that one.‘ Capeesh?!

If I schedule in the downtime, make a date with myself, then I won’t be riding my arse for not having enough energy to complete the things that might give me energy. 

Instead of guilt-tripping myself,
I’d be able to luxuriate in the feeling of knowing that’s all I’ve got to do in the time and space available is ::REST::

In Honour of Slow ( a quiet protest)

Patreon Page Facelift

I’m Creatrix: she who makes.

”The speed at which we do something – anything – changes our experience of it.”
The Tyranny of Email, John Freeman

Over the last few years, I’m been practicing ::SLOW:: within my creative work, homelife, movements, relationships, thoughts and feelings. I’ve been turning away from the speed of 21st century society and the urgency of others to embrace my own pace.

This pace is ::SLOW:: which is not laziness or tardiness but is all about embracing balance, calm and sinking deeper into the creative process.

When we slow down and get off the carousel of productivity, perfection and quantity there is #radicaljoy to be experienced. There is a less is more mindset. There are richer moments of attention and awareness and connection. There is quality over quantity.

I’m Creatrix: she who makes with her hands, heart and soul.

My practice manifests through poetry, storytelling, image, walking, zine-making, mending and stitching, and the unfolding histories of black people. I engage audiences around black women’s voices and bodies, black feminism, ecology, trauma and memory, nature and connection, anti-racism, healing and joy.

I’m working within the system to challenge White Supremacy Culture and all it’s many guises. Dismantle and destroy. ::SLOW:: by it’s very nature is a quiet protest against this system of brainwashing and oppression and destruction.
At the same time, I’m re-centre-ing myself and creating outside the system. I’m exploring my own ways of working with me at the centre. Not marginalised and never minoritised. Doing my own thing on my own terms. I’m becoming whole through taking back my power and refusing to jump to other peoples demands, expectations and perceptions.

The underlining principle of this revolution is the practice of ::SLOW::

The ‘Slow Movement’ leans into the pleasures that are to be enjoyed by slowing down the process of everything. This connects me to my true nature as well as nature herself along with sustainability, simplicity, reflection and my rich multicultural ancestral traditions, rituals and practices.
Slowing the pace of how I live my life and create my life in the process is taking/ making a deliberate decision to do so. It’s a philosophy which embraces the local and seasonal rhythms and leaves room for and values thinking and feeling time. As well as REST.

::SLOW:: celebrates the process of bringing about work which has reflection at it’s heart and the time it takes to develop and nurture the necessary skills to create. There is being present throughout the journey and recognition of the becoming all along the path.

Funds from Patreon will go toward supporting – this quiet revolution of the practice of ::SLOW::

Your support is helping me to stick two figures up at the establishment, stating that there is another way of being.
We’ve all experienced it during the last two years of a global pandemic.

It has been shown that capitalism can be brought to a standstill and life can be lived at a slower pace. That we can connect with ourselves, each other and nature on a deeper level. Why can’t this be the ‘new normal’ instead of reverting back to the old ways of working and producing and exploiting?
Your support will help me to continue to embrace the practice of ::SLOW:: as I bring into the world my creations through word, text, fabric, film, audio and movement.

What you get for supporting this quiet revolution is a shining example of someone who is working on her own terms to bring about changes within herself and everyone else she serves and touches.

You get to share in the musings, and happenings, the breakthroughs and the heartbreak. I’ll be sharing my creations and developments here along with the resources and readings I’ll be exploring to lean into the practice of ::SLOW::

I hope with that you are inspired to take a stand against White Supremacy Culture in your own small and slow ways. As you have the power, we all have the power in our own way, to make a difference, to bring about changes in our lives and the lives of others.
And it starts with ourselves, with who we choose be, as we all have a choice.

I’m here now, sharing who I be with you.
Thank you for being here.

“The Slow philosophy can be summed up in a single word: balance […] Seek to live at what the musicians call the tempo guisto – the right speed […] Savouring the hours and minutes rather than just counting them. Doing everything as well as possible, instead of as fast as possible. It’s about quality over quantity in everything from work to food to parenting.” In Praise of Slow, Carl Honoré