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  • Writer's picturejanaejean

Ready, Set, 2018!

Updated: Sep 5, 2020

2018 - It's our year!

We're now a couple of weeks into 2018. Resolutions have been made. Some have been broken. Some are still kept. Some have yet to be made. Here's five books to keep us inspired and creating to the end this year!

Sam Bennett, New World Library, 2016, $15.95, Paperback, 256 pages.

Sam Bennett is an actress, author, coach, businesswoman, and founder of The Organized Artist Company. Sam share 66 ways we can get our of our heads and into our lives with practical acitivities and advice. Her suggestions include fun five-minute act activities to get our creativity flowing to taking our smartphones off of our nightstands. She encourages readers to take the time we need for ourselves, so that we are able to give the best of ourselves into our work.

Spencer and I had the honor of speaking with her with Sam about her book and her work for our mid-month January Conscious Community Podcast. Listen and read the companion article on the Conscious Community Magazine website or subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and YouTube.

Julia Cameron, TarcherPerigee, 1992, $17.00, Paperback, 272 pages.

The Artist's Way is Julia Cameron's classic guide to creativity as a conduit for spiritual sel-discovery. Since its first printing in 1992, it has assisted countless creatives rediscover their talents and refine their skills.

Cameron offers 12 weeks worth of prompts and activities to stimulate creativity. Many other books have been written using a similar style Cameron's. She is an advocate of what she calls "morning pages," where you write without ceasing as soon as you wake up until you fill up three pages with thoughts, musings, grocery lists, and affirmations. You can even write "I don't know what to write" over and over until something comes. The other crucial remedy for creative block that Cameron suggests, which I whole-heartedly embrace, are Artist's Dates. Artist's Dates are outing on which you take your own inner-artist. For example, you might pursue an art gallery, walk in the woods and take photographs, or people watch and journal at a local café.

I have done The Artist's Way three times all the way through, and I have started and stopped it many more. I encourage you to try it and see what you take away. At very least, take your inner-artist out and see what fascintaing comapny he or she is.​

Elle Luna, Workman Publishing, 2015, $16.95, Hardcover, 176 pages.

Drew Kimble, CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2017, $7.99, Paperback, 152 pages.

Kimble's book is designed to be a interactive journal. It contains very little copy, except for memes featuring quptes from prominent authors, artists, and other thinkers and creatives. It emphasizes writing promts to get you thinking about yourself. The activities are accessbile and this book would make a great journal for teens who are interested in blogging and writing. It can be used as a tool to get you writing those morning pages on morning when you just don't know what to write.

Meera Lee Patel, TarcherPerigee, 2015, $16.00, Paperback, 128 pages.

My fifth choice of this list is by no means my last. Start Where You Are by Meera Lee Patel, is full of ideas to get your pen moving. Her book has inspiring prompts like Kimble's Rediscover Your Story combined with a vivd, illustrated style like Luna's The Crossroads of Should and Must. This book makes a great companion to your meditation practice. I suggest purchasing a high-quality lined journal, such as a webnotebook by Rhodia or a classic notebook by Moleskin as well as an unlined sketchbook. such as a Canson universal sketchpad along with a fountain pen, such as one by Pilot and a set of artist-quality colored pencils, such as Prismacolor, and get creating!




- Arthur Ashe



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