Resolving a Title Battle with Amazon
Creative Ideas Are Everywhere

My Book Giveaway Was a Huge Success
New Paintings
Creative Cat: Karma
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Creativity Run Wild

A Monthly Newsletter
Artists, Creatives, and Everybody Else

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Resolving a Title Battle with Amazon
            Recently a book club asked me to come to speak about my newest novel 6 Guys, 1 Girl, 1 Night. However, they were having trouble finding it on amazon. When they put in the title, it was nowhere to be found. Instead what came up was a bizarre and distasteful mixture of children's books and porn. My novel is neither.
           After a dozen emails with KDP, amazon's book division, I learned two things. My book was on page 18 of this grouping for a reason no one could explain and it was positioned with children's books because of the three digits in the title. No one at customer service was willing to touch the porn in the mix with a 10-foot pole. "Something to do with our algorithm" was the repeated answer.
            Although readers can find my book easily by putting in the title AND my name, not everyone knows to do that. So I decided to change the title, hence the revised cover shown here. If you're a reader, there is one takeaway: Search for a book by title and author whenever possible. If you're an author,  there are two: Don't include digits in your title unless it's a date and regularly check the availability of your work and what's next to it.
           And if you're as disturbed by the appearance of porn in a listing of books for young children as I am, let me know and I'll send you some screen captures you can protest with.
Creative Ideas Are Everywhere

          Last March, a good friend and I went to Silverton, a nearby town, to hang out for a couple of days. In our wanderings downtown, we came across the most amazing yarn store I'd ever been in called Apples to Oranges. My friend is a knitter and she looked for possibilities. As a painter, I looked at the colors and the textures. On the right above is a close-up I took of a ball of yarn. On the left is the pastel painting I did last weekend of that yarn.
          As I paint more abstracts, I'm seeing patterns and possibilities in many places. I keep magazines and books on hand to give me ideas, but I'm learning that just walking around and talking photos with my phone is one of the best ways to get inspiration. I also watch for landscape compositions (just the bare bones of the way the vista is put together).Similarly I've been jotting down words and phrases that I hear in songs or conversations that may lead to a poem or a story.

Where are you finding your creative ideas?
I used palette knives and some pottery etching tools to create the texture of the dry landscape here. I like what happened.
My ebook giveaway was a huge success!

             This is the first year I've participated in Smashwords' July event where many ebooks are free or at much reduced prices. I put all seven of my books on for free and gave away 206 books. I am beyond delighted, especially as I know that many of the books went to new readers. One of the most fascinating things about the giveaway for me was that all seven were picked up in roughly the same numbers.
              As you probably know, reviews on or mean a lot to us independent authors and so if you've read my work and liked it, I hope you'll post a review. The easiest way to do this is to go to my website (, find the book you want to review, and click on the amazon or smashwords tab. Thanks so much!
This new acrylic, titled The Cracks in the World, is the result of fooling around with acrylics, a palette knife, a sander, and a Posca Pen. I love it!
My Studio
Intention: Making art every day in gratitude for the colors of life
Mission: Establishing creative self-expression as a key ingredient for recovery
Motto: Make art and heal the heart

Having had both a one-eyed cat and a three-legged cat myself, I an delighted to feature Willy, Anny Mayer's creative companion, in this newsletter. Plus I have a fondness for orange boys.

Do you have a cat picture to share? Send it to me at and I'll include it in an upcoming issue.
Looking for more ideas for jumpstarting your creativity? Check out my book Sober Play.
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