Blog

  • Creating a Radically Honest Homepage (10/19/2018) - Today I want to share some tips on how to create a website that feels authentic to who you are as a writer or artist: Step #1: Understand Your Goals Earlier this year I was having a conversation with a writer in my Creative Shift Mastermind about options for a website homepage. I explained a […]
  • Can your writing make someone’s day? (10/12/2018) - I received this letter in the mail recently: It was from a writer I have been working with, and it was a letter expressing her gratitude for what we have been creating. To receive a letter like this is, well, a shock. I mean, how often do you go through your mail to discover a […]
  • A Creative Career Guided by Principles: My Interview With Writer Sean McCabe (10/10/2018) - In my interview with writer Sean McCabe, we dig into the reality of what it means to run your own business. He shares the behind the scenes decisions that have sometimes cost him tens of thousands of dollars, or more than a year of his time going down a path that he later reversed. Sean […]
  • Choosing the writer’s life (10/4/2018) - Today I want to celebrate someone who has been a source of inspiration for me in the past year or so. She’s a novelist who writes historical fiction, and is currently finishing up a manuscript that she will pitch to agents. She’s actually a client of mine too, I’ve been helping her get creative clarity […]
  • The Best Way to Support Writers (9/28/2018) - What is the best way to support a writer whose books you love? Take two simple, free, and generous actions: Action #1: Post a Review The first is to leave a review for their book at online retailers. Especially Amazon. This is a step that many people miss. They buy a book or take it […]
  • A writer is a story (9/21/2018) - This week, I bought another vintage typewriter. But this one came with a story of a writer. The typewriter is a 1959 Hermes 3000, made in Switzerland: In 2014, the owner had it serviced, a receipt came with it that had their name on it. The name was that of a woman, someone different from […]
  • Double down on your writing (9/14/2018) - Not long ago, my friend Jennie asked me to consider what my perfect day would look like. At first, it was easy to scoff at this question, because each of us does so much to support the needs of others, and ourselves. It feels almost decadent to consider a day that isn’t defined by how […]
  • Risking It All to Become an Author — My Interview with Robert Fieseler (9/12/2018) - I first met Robert Fieseler, who I know as Bobby, when he was working at an ad agency. Then, to my astonishment, I saw him make some big changes in his life. Even though he was on a great career track in advertising, he began taking classes in the evenings and weekends to get his […]
  • How to Make Your Creative Shift (9/7/2018) - For the past couple of years, I have been working with small groups of writers and artists to develop a process that I call the Creative Shift. This is where you move past a creative rut and feel lit up about your creative vision and writing. Today, I want to share two things with you: […]
  • Make Your Creative Shift (9/5/2018) - In today’s podcast episode, I take you through the three steps of my Creative Shift process. I have honed this after working with hundreds of writers who wanted a sense of clarity to move their creative work to the next level and truly reach people. I also talk about my next Creative Shift Mastermind program, […]
  • What buying a typewriter taught me about writing (8/31/2018) - A couple weeks ago, I bought three typewriters: They were all used by the same woman who had passed away 20 years ago. I answered an ad for them on Craiglist and went to the home of her son to pick them up. He lived in a large house, which was now empty because he […]
  • Writing Spaces: Where You Create Matters (8/24/2018) - Craft comes first. But when speaking with writers, I often find that they struggle to create. They can’t get in a good writing routine, and other important priorities (job, family, home) distract them from writing. Today I want to talk about how where you create can help you write more. A year ago I took […]
  • How to Build a Following with Uniqueness, Authenticity, and “Getting Crazy.” My Interview with Travis Jonker. (8/16/2018) - I recently spoke to author, book blogger, and school librarian Travis Jonker about three aspects how he became an author: How he got his literary agent through his blog. How he developed courage to share his creative work by “failing in public” by creating a series of zines that he would mail to friends and […]
  • The best advice that many writers fail to take (8/10/2018) - This week I saw a series of Tweets from author Delilah S. Dawson in which she tried to demystify the reality behind what leads to “huge traditional publishing success.” The entire chain of approximately 30 Tweets is amazing, but here are a couple to frame our discussion today: If I could change 1 thing about […]
  • Conduct an audit of your author platform (8/3/2018) - I get emails like this all the time from writers: “All the literary agents are telling me: ‘If you had a platform, I would represent you.'” Why do they say this? A lot of books are thrust into the marketplace with a quiet “thud” — no readers, no sales, no reviews — and the agents want […]
  • How to kickstart word-of-mouth marketing (7/27/2018) - This week I asked author Allison Leotta how she found her literary agent. The answer? From her existing network. Allison didn’t spend weeks researching agents, creating spreadsheets, and then spending months emailing dozens of them. Instead, she considered anyone she knew who was a published author, and reached out to them for advice. In her […]
  • Why Writing a Novel is Harder than Law School, Running a Marathon, or Climbing a Mountain. My Interview with author Allison Leotta (7/25/2018) - Author Allison Leotta made an incredible career transition. After spending 12 years as a federal prosecutor who specialized in sex crimes, domestic violence, crimes against children, she became an full-time novelist. She now has five books published, one being prepared for publication, and another being written. You can listen the interview on iTunes or via this […]
  • What does it really take to succeed? (7/20/2018) - My days are spent obsessing about the creative process of writers and artists. The photo below is of Danika Massey. She has this amazing channel on YouTube where she goes by the name ComicBookGirl19. Here she is on her couch, crying: She had just got done telling her audience that she is going to have […]
  • My next book is a mess (7/13/2018) - This is the feedback I just received on the draft of the book I’m writing: It wanders. It’s circular. It’s repetitive. It’s confusing. It’s a mess. It’s bloated. This is the book that I started writing in 2015. That I wrote 72,000 words on. Then I threw those words in the trash and started again […]
  • “What I wish I knew when I first became an author/illustrator,” with Lori Richmond (7/9/2018) - I invited author/illustrator Lori Richmond to talk about what we wish we knew when we first started in our creative careers. Both Lori and I made big creative shifts midway through life: we left safe corporate jobs to start our own companies that focus on creative work. In her case, she became a children’s author/illustrator. […]
  • 5 Things Successful Writers Do that Others Miss (7/6/2018) - Last week I mentioned that I have spent the last 8 years working with thousands of authors and artists. Today I want to share some of the trends that I see that successful writers do that others miss. What I share here today is the heart of what my Creative Business Boost event will be […]
  • 8 years ago, I took a big risk (6/29/2018) - Eight years ago this week, I took the biggest risk of my life. Just before my first son was born, at the bottom of the recession, I started a company. Now, “starting a company” sounds kind of glamorous. But in my case, it amounted to me saying, “Hello world. Um, does anyone want to hire […]
  • I’m Hiring (6/26/2018) - I’m hiring a social media assistant to join me at WeGrowMedia! This is a “virtual” position, meaning you can do 100% of the work from home, or wherever you are. Do you work best from the beach? That’s fine by me. I work with writers and artists and think these people are AMAZING. If you […]
  • I’ve never done this before (6/22/2018) - I’m doing something I’ve never done before, and I’m kind of excited, kind of terrified! Last Fall, some writers in my Mastermind group encouraged me to create an in-person event. I told them there was no way I would organize that, and then listed out all of the reasons. I told them how I hated […]
  • What Silences Your Creative Voice (6/15/2018) - Recently my friend Leah Shoemaker shared a video of herself playing piano and singing an original song she wrote. It was so good! I wrote her an email to tell her so, and to just catch up. Her reply astounded me though. She thanked me, but then said, “For the most part, I hide singing.” […]
  • How to Make a Creative Shift (6/12/2018) - Today I want to share with you the four essential ingredients to making a creative shift in your life. What is a creative shift? It is about taking a leap forward to get unstuck and ensure that your creative work — your writing and art — has an impact on the world. This is what […]
  • Take Authority Over Your Creative Vision (6/8/2018) - This past week I met Bruce Springsteen. And it was a direct result of sending out my email newsletter. About a decade ago, Reed Fry joined my newsletter list. He wasn’t an author or artist, my main target audience, but a friend recommended that he would appreciate my take on marketing and digital media. Over […]
  • How to Take a One-Day Creative Retreat (6/1/2018) - Yesterday was a little tough for me. I had this intense feeling of “the fear of missing out” all day long. Why? Because I missed out on meeting a bunch of famous authors and celebrities, and I missed catching up with some wonderful friends who I rarely see. You see, I decided to skip going […]
  • Say YES to Your Craft (5/25/2018) - Saying “yes” to your craft means saying “no” to so much else. What I mean is this: if you struggle to: Find time to create To know exactly what you should create To finish what you start To understand who will love your work To reach those people There are no easy answers. No webinars […]
  • The Man Who Writes 10 Books Per Year – My Interview with Michael La Ronn (5/22/2018) - How can one man write 10 books per year, while working a full-time job, going to law school in the evenings, and raising a young family? Today we find out. I am so excited to share my interview with author Michael La Ronn. He has published more than 40 books in the past six years: […]
  • Claim Your Creative Time (5/18/2018) - What is it like to begin writing a book again after a 60 year break? Yesterday I ran a small workshop about establishing a writing routine, and one of the writers in the group, Fred Sanborn, told us about how he wrote and published books in the 1950s, and then stopped. He was here today […]
  • How to Manage Anxiety in Your Creative Process. My Interview with Artist Megan Carty (5/9/2018) - The other day I was looking at Instagram, and I saw a series of videos from an artist I follow, Megan Carty. She was in her studio, working on a series of paintings for a gallery show she is preparing for. She looked directly in the camera and said this: “I feel like I’m having […]
  • Getting Radical Clarity (5/4/2018) - There is this video I’ve watched a bunch of times this week, where centenarians — those who lived past 100 years old — are interviewed. In the video, they consider what they have created, and wisdom they would share with others. So much of it is about appreciating your connection to others. To spend time […]
  • 5 Things I Learned By Writing Every Day For A Year (4/27/2018) - One year ago, I began writing my next book. I added a daily commitment to my calendar at 5:30am, seven days a week; it said simply: “Write.” Here I am, nearly 365 days later, having written every day. The results? Both ordinary and astounding. I want to share what I have learned in this past […]
  • Forming Creative Community. Exploring the Terrain Beyond the Limits of Social Media (4/20/2018) - Illustrator and writer Meera Lee Patel chatted with me recently about the value of having a creative community. For years, she worked alone on her craft in her apartment. But recently, she joined a shared studio space. This is how she describes the shift: “It is the first time in my life that I have […]
  • Embracing Possibility: My Interview with Illustrator and Writer Meera Lee Patel (4/18/2018) - Illustrator and writer Meera Lee Patel describes why she began painting soon after she began working a day job: “I started painting as a way to find myself, as a way to remind myself of who I was when I was a little bit happier. Who I was when I was making things. When I […]
  • Take Back Your Attention: Jocelyn K. Glei on Finding More Creativity and Meaning in Your Daily Work (4/11/2018) - Today I speak with writer Jocelyn K. Glei about how digital media and technology has created a crisis for many writers and artists. Their days are spent running on the treadmill of digital and social media, chained to their computers and phones, and increasingly unable to break away in order to complete bigger creative projects. […]
  • In-Between Your Creative Vision (4/6/2018) - Heads up: I just announced my next Studio Time 1-day workshop. Join me to clearly identify who your ideal audience is. There are only 15 spots available. More info here.   I’ve been thinking about that place in-between. In-between your creative vision and your reality. The thing about in-between is that you can see potential […]
  • The Return of Blogging (3/30/2018) - I’ve noticed something being talked about by some very successful writers and artists: blogging. Does that sound weird? As if I’m predicting the return of the pager and fax machine. Today I want to talk about how deep, long-term projects like blogs are being talked about as the solution to social media burnout that many […]
  • How Creative Side-Projects Led to a Career in Art and Design, with Kelli Anderson (3/28/2018) - In this podcast, I chat with Brooklyn-based artist and designer, Kelli Anderson. We dig into The value of stubbornness in the creative process How her career path had her quit a safe full-time job for a part-time job that allowed her to do creative side-project with the rest of her time The importance of collaboration in […]
  • This Historic Theater Will Be Destroyed (3/23/2018) - If you are a writer or artist, it is easy to feel as though you have missed the boat. As if, today, it is harder to develop an audience than it was 5 or 10 or 20 years ago. You look around at industry trends, at the marketplace, at social media, and feel jaded. You […]
  • The Business of Being a Writer, My Interview with Jane Friedman (3/14/2018) - Today I’m excited to share my interview with author and publishing expert Jane Friedman. In our discussion, we dig into the nuts and bolts on how to earn a living as a writer. We frame the conversation around her new book, The Business of Being a Writer, which shatters romantic assumptions around publishing, but then […]
  • Coping with Impostor Syndrome (3/9/2018) - Someone emailed me the other day and shared a challenge they are trying to work through: “I think my main creative challenge is shutting out all the noise and the other things I can do and just WRITE.” They went on to describe how their time is spent caring for their kids, for relatives who […]
  • Social Anxiety and Sharing Your Creative Work. An interview with Ellen Hendriksen, PhD (3/5/2018) - In my latest podcast, I interview psychologist Ellen Hendriksen, who helps millions calm their anxiety and be their authentic selves. In our chat, we dig into topics that writers and artists constantly struggle with, including: Impostors Syndrome Permission to create Comparison to others Seeking validation Sharing your work publicly Collaboration Entrepreneurship We talk about her […]
  • Invest in Yourself (3/2/2018) - Today I want to talk about investing in yourself and your creative vision. Investing in yourself is about how you spend your resources. For your writing or art, you can’t plan for luck or great timing or having the best connections or even being the most talented. What you can plan for is to make more […]
  • How to Develop Your Creative Career, with Will Terry (2/27/2018) - In this podcast episode, I talk to illustrator Will Terry. We dig deep into how he went from freelance gigs as an illustrator to developing a sustainable career with multiple revenue streams. Will illustrates children’s books, sells his art at conventions, and is the co-founder of an online art school called The School of Visual […]
  • How Marketing Actually Works (2/23/2018) - A lot of writers and artists want to know what works when it comes to marketing. Often, they want to find a simple trick that they can use quickly to have more people become aware of their books or art or mission. It’s not uncommon for me to hear things like: “I tried Facebook, it […]
  • Let’s Talk About Art, Money, Piracy and Drew Barrymore. My Interview With Marc Johns. (2/20/2018) - On January 29th, artist Marc Johns saw this on social media: Drew Barrymore shared a photo of her daughter wearing a jacket that had Marc’s art on it: Amazing right? This is the type of thing that many artists dream about: a celebrity sharing their work with 8 million followers. But there was a problem. […]
  • The Cure for Social Media Overwhelm (2/16/2018) - I realized something this week: 10 years ago, I joined Twitter. I’ve shared 25,000 Tweets in that time. 12 years ago I created my blog. I clicked “publish” on a post more than 2,000 times. 13 years ago I sent my first email newsletter. I’ve sent more than 650 weekly newsletters since then. In some […]
  • Find More Time For Creative Work You are Proud Of, With Srini Rao (2/13/2018) - Today I speak with Srini Rao, who is the host and founder of The Unmistakable Creative podcast, and the author of Unmistakable: Why Only Is Better Than Best. In this chat we discuss how to find more time to do the creative work that you love. Click ‘play’ above, or listen to the episode on […]