Clear your bookshelf for a new Chris Guillebeau!

Born-for-This-Final-CoverI enjoy his blog. I admire his candor.

I’m glad I own The Art of Non-Conformity and $100 Start-up.

Chris Guillebeau goes public April 5 with his Born for This. The new book features people with dream jobs they love. The author shares how these delighted folk found their calling through trial-and-error journeys.

Too many pundit-writers would choose to lecture readers on their ideas for seeking great work.

I’m confident Chris will employ the writing wisdom of “show, don’t tell.” He seems intent on letting the blissed-out workers divulge their own stories.

I’m ready to read. In fact, I feel “born for this” book.

Write what you know? Try writing who you are first!

Christina Fisanick Greer bookToo often, I see writers drowning in a years-old sea of research.

Even when writing fiction, they have been sucked in by the “write what you know” buzzwords.

Sure, anyone can fear that they’ll never truly know anything, and that their voice won’t be authentic. All the while, these worrying writers forget who they are.

Meet Christina Fisanick Greer. Look at what she’s created. Whose story is she telling? Her own!

Christina says:

“My coloring book was born out of a desire to combine my twin loves: writing and art. I love to create and to help others use their creativity to heal. Given that I am in recovery from binge eating disorder, I developed this coloring book and journal as a guide that other people in recovery could use as well.

“I have been teaching college writing for almost 20 years and am the author of nearly 30 books, so I developed writing prompts based on years of experiences. They encourage the reader to explore their recovery critically and compassionately.

“My next book, The Optimistic Addict: Recovering from Binge Eating Disorder, will be released my MSI Press in late summer. In addition, I offer a free six-lesson writing for recovery course on my website:”

“Coloring for Recovery,” Christina’s coloring book can be downloaded at her Etsy shop for just 99 cents by clicking here:

Potential authors struggle with identifying an audience of readers. Christina proves that it’s vital to create something for one reader first. That reader is yourself.

Writers, could you be a Donald Trump?

Bard coverI’m still laughing.

It’s no secret I’m in Iowa (although I’m taking offers). That means the Iowa Caucus makes me popular, at least temporarily. Candidates are everywhere, on my phone, e-mail and mailbox. In more ways than one!

Mike Chiaverina, my gifted teacher from high school, knows this fact. That’s why his handwritten Christmas card greeting caused laughs that would squirt milk through any noses. He inscribed the card:

“I will make your holidays great again!

  • Donald J. Trump (just kidding)”

For any writer who is stuck (let’s not use the BLOCK word), consider this. All these candidates are busy. Pick your most (or least) favorite potential president, and “help” him or her. What would a Valentine’s greeting penned by this personality look like? Here’s your chance to make politics fun again.

Meanwhile, check out a sample of Bard of the Deal, the oh-so-fun poetry parody written by using actual Trump quotes, Tweets and more.


What happens when writing isn’t easy?

Visit his site. Read his books. Chris connects!

Visit his site. Read his books. Chris connects!

You don’t feel like writing right now?

Write now, worry later.

I liked the recent advice from Chris Guillebeau. This author has a new book coming in April (Born for This: How to Find the Work You Were Meant To Do).

Chris wasn’t talking to writers only. Let me add a 2B to his wisdom:

When you write, you help at least two people. Yourself, and a reader.

Don’t let your writing get ‘totaled’ in 2016


(Photo credit: Alex Borland/

I want to make every word count this year.

That urge was reinforced when we received a surprise Christmas card.

A couple we met this year are on a year-long cross-country trip.

Their handwritten card’s first sentence read:

“On our trip, John has totaled…35 states so far.”

That’s how the card appeared. “Totaled” ended the first line.

For a moment, my heart raced. I thought the worst. “Totaled” what?

One word can make, or break, your writing. Choose carefully.


Bill Flanagan: Better than any Sunday sermon?

You may have to look back to 1957 to find a defense of Christmas as spirited as Flanagan's.

You may have to look back to 1957 to find a defense of Christmas as spirited as Flanagan’s.

Forget books. Articles, too.

If you want to see a master at making more out of less, check out CBS Sunday Morning commentator Bill Flanagan in action.

He keeps his sense of humor and point of view. Count the few words he uses, or needs.

Flanagan counsels those fearing that Christmas is endangered by commercialism. I still have hope for smart writing, as long as word-artists like Flanagan are around.

Adults coloring? Don’t forget the Christmas cards!

christmas cards akersPerfection. Fear. Twin terrors.

There’s one unusual aspect I admire about the newest creation from Onyx and Alexa Aker.

Who? Check out their epic project to ring in 2016. Go on, I’ll wait.

Welcome back. Cool, huh?

The brother-sister talents weren’t about to let the Christmas season pass. Instead of waiting for months to fret over an idea, they are on the market NOW. They’ve created a fun, affordable way for the self-coloring fans of the world to celebrate the holiday.

“We may be relying more and more on electronic means to get in touch with the people we love, but there is nothing quite like the feeling of getting a physical greeting card — and there is no better time to give one than around the holidays,” Alexa said.
“Design can connect people. And design is better when people can share it and put their own stamp on it. This is our intention in creating printable coloring greeting cards.”
To grab some of these fun Christmas wonders, click and see what the Akers are offering. Then, break out the colors. The holiday is nearing!