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JJ Barnes

JJ Barnes writes about parenting, feminism, current affairs and writing

By - JJBarnes

Getting over my performance anxiety… sort of.

I don’t like to use terms related to mental health issues lightly. I don’t think liking things clean should be called OCD, I don’t think being a bit glum is Depression. With this in mind, I won’t say I have a definite PHOBIA of acting, but I will say that when I was an extra in the background of one

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By - JJBarnes

I can only be the kind of mother I am… and sometimes it’s not who they want me to be.

I have a six year old daughter, a three year old daughter, and a six year old step son. I love them all fiercely, I would kill and die for these children, and I try to be the best mother I can be to them. But the big two are old enough to compare me to other mothers. And I

By - JJBarnes

I cannot keep my house tidy, and I think it’s time to stop apologising for it.

I live in a messy house. It’s not just messy, it’s full. There’s three children with three different interests and they’re all young enough that they still play with toys. A LOT of toys. They go through quantities of clothes because of their frequent proximity to chocolate, and mud, and their version of cleaning up is to throw whatever it

By - JJBarnes

My daughter, the six year old author.

My daughter, Rose, asked me if we could write a book together. She didn’t want to write one of the books she makes with felt tipped pens and held together with Sellotape, she wanted to write a REAL book. The kind of book I write. I told her it would take work, and it would take time, but if she

By - JJBarnes

You tell artists to get a real job, but you’re glad they don’t. So stop it.

I’m a writer. It’s all I’ve ever wanted to be. I want to write and tell stories, I want to turn that writing and those stories into books, films and television. And I’m working really hard, every day, to make that happen. And, finally, I’m starting to get somewhere. So much so that people in my life are starting to,

By - JJBarnes

Why I believe in the importance of recognising privilege.

The idea of privilege is pretty trendy right now. Male privilege, white privilege, class privilege. On one side it’s pretty easy to accuse someone of having one of these things as a way of discounting their accomplishments as being merely a product of their privilege. And on the other side, people are accused of victimising themselves by blaming the privilege

By - JJBarnes

What writing a book with my step-son means to me.

My little patchwork family is made up of myself and my partner, my daughter from my first marriage, his son from his first marriage, and our tyrannical toddler who came along 9 months after my 30th birthday… We’ve been a family for five years now. I’ve looked after my step-son for at least part of nearly every single day since

By - JJBarnes

We should expect men to be good fathers, but society is set up to enable bad ones.

Watching women do the lion’s share of the parenting is unremarkable. In heterosexual relationships, the mother is more likely to have the most active role in child rearing, and in the UK it’s estimated that one in four children are being raised in single parent households, with 90% of those headed by women (BBC). I firmly believe in the power

By - JJBarnes

Facebook, Dick Pics, and Being a Female Professional Writer Online.

I’m a writer by profession. I write novels, scripts and blogs, and it’s how I make a living. To make a living, people need to know I exist or they won’t read, buy or invest in any of the work I do. And to let people know I exist, I depend heavily on a social media presence. Through Facebook, Twitter

By - JJBarnes

Am I risking my daughter’s safety to help her follow her dream?

Sometimes our children will love things and want things that we know are bad for them. We guide them, advise them, keep them as safe as possible because we love them and its our job. But what if they want something that is good for them in so many ways, but carries a risk that makes you feel sick. What