Women: The World Needs YOU to Make Art.




I’m going to make an assumption that, regardless of how successful you may or may not be, I wager that, when you pack your things up at the end of the day, you don’t feel like you’ve really taken part in high levels of self-actualization, meaning-making or connecting with the world at large in a way that really matters to you

    As I’m sure you’ve noticed, things aren’t looking good for us(as a country, as a planet) right now.

With right wing authoritarianism sweeping the globe, ignorance, prejudice, war, destruction, greed and tyranny are not far behind. We need your voice. We must speak out and speak up with art.

 Art pushes things forward, art is what pushes antiquated ideas to extinction.


Art = Imagining a future and working toward it. 

    The internet has become a platform for outrage… and everyone is outraged.
But the internet also keeps everyone in their own small circles, it keeps us all in
like-minded bubbles.
   Our outrage online doesn’t do ANYTHING except confirm to ourselves and a few other friends of ours what we already understand and agree with
     If all we’re doing is reacting to what’s happening in our own little circle by saying “Yay” or “Nay” — we’re not really resonating with anyone except those who already agree. Nobody else of importance is hearing our thoughts. 


    If we’re outraged, we need to do more than just preaching to the choir on fucking Facebook.



. If all we’re doing is writing a blog or telling our friends on Twitter or Facebook how we feel, that’s as good as being silent. & silence is complicity.  – Silence is complicity. By not creating art, we’re sort of looking at the state of things and saying “I’m fine with this.”





The Idea Economy/Sharing economy

Everyone has something to say.  The world needs to hear it. This is a new world, we connect through creative/artistic vulnerable endeavors.

   WOMEN — the world desperately needs to hear your voice. We need to feminize the planet, fast. 

  We need to get harmonized & start thinking more holistically or we’re in big trouble.

Women of color, LGBT and marginalized people of every kind should be making art.

The world needs to hear what you have to say. You need to wake us up. We need to have our world shaken up… If we don’t, we may literally go extinct instead. We could nuke ourselves into extinction…we could have another holocaust, we could kill the planet and not be able to ever go back… 


– The world is full of lonely people who are looking to connect, and connecting is a basic desire of ours.

-Making art is one of the best ways to connect with the world at large. Our immediate relationships are important, sure, but so is our relationship with the world at large.

– Silence is complicity. By not creating art, we’re sort of looking at the state of things and saying “I’m fine with this.” Our silence is complicity


– It’s highly therapeutic.

– It’s self-actualization – We are not complete in our workaday lives.

Art Connects All Disciplines

Creating art gives us the unique vantage point,

Creating art gives us the ability to research and bring together every discipline. From philosophy to psychology, sociology, economics, match, science….

Art is the Hub of it all.


    You’ll hear musicians say that there are a couple of songs in every guitar. In other words, each guitar is unique, different— there are things you can pull out of one guitar that you can’t pull out of another. I will go even further and say that not only are there a couple of songs inside each guitar, but each guitar has entire topographies that can be extracted. This is a great metaphor for us as individuals. We are all unique, we all have worlds within us that we can and should extract.
The world is full of noise.
Advertisers spend billions of dollars to influence us. The voices with the most money are the ones that speak the loudest, art is the exception. Now more than ever we need to have our own voice. We need to make ourselves heard.


The Education System & Fascist Authoritarianism



    In school we’re taught to listen and not to question things. Certainly, to have one’s own ideas or theories? Blasphemy! Utter heresy!
    In graduate school when writing a want to express your ideas in an essay or thesis paper, you literally have to express those ideas by quoting already established authorities in the subject.

Think about that.


You need to speak truth. your truth. 


Art allows us to articulate our present state, our past, it let’s us ask a question and


Step back from the everyday noise and explore a deeper meaning. 

Explore different terrain.





Big Data is Coming…Another Bubble is Bursting. Are You Ready?


  This is mostly aimed at Kindle/Ebook authors and entrepreneurs but creatives and entrepreneurs of all kinds may find it relevant.

Things are changing. Fast. I want to make sure that you’re prepared for those changes.

  These changes are going to be highly profitable for those who embrace them, and detrimental to those who don’t.



  • times are changing(how)
  • technology is changing(how)
  • readers are changing(how)
  • who’s going to write the new classics?
  • good news/bad news
  • long-tail legacies

 1       the new classics

 2      the future & the future of ebooks


What has been, what is and what will be.



  • the beginning of ebooks…
    • Writing cheap quick eBooks was a gold mine. Every new topic could be written about and potentially earn an author money.
    • Since this was a whole new format, it was an open market, every subject imaginable could potentially make money
  •  But now… times are changing
    • Technology is changing
    • Ebook sales are falling flat
    • Rich Content
    • Loyalty will matter more
    • Slow builder books will do better
    • Long form 100-120,000 words
    • more and more people will be writing (bad) ebooks
    • Book sales, discoverability, and sales paths will be tracked more accurately by publishers(authors)
    • algorithms
    • Each year, indie authors become smarter, more sophisticated and more adept at implementing professional publishing best practices. Best practices are what separate the indie author amateurs from the indie author professionals. Bestselling indie ebooks are indistinguishable from traditionally published books (aside from indies’ more reader-friendly pricing) with brilliant cover designs, great writing, professional editing, and creative marketing and promotion.  – Quote
    • Readers will demand more from the books they buy
    • Books are only going to get more interesting and beautiful


  • Readers are going to expect more from books in the future. — No, that’s not quite true… the truth is, they already do expect more. 

& someone is going to give them what they want.

  • Will that be you? Because, trust me, if you don’t, someone is going to give them more.
  • These new books will become the New Classics. 
    • These new classics will be seen as the ‘one book to buy’ in each subject.


  • Who’s going to write the new classics, will it be you? Or someone else?
  • Someone will
  • Who’s going to tell a better story?
  • Who’s going to tell a more compelling story using visual graphics and design?
  • Who’s going to be the most compelling?
  • Who’s going to explain things in the most palatable way?
  • Who’s going to have the most beautiful book in terms of both writing and visuals?

Times are a’changin’ The good news and the bad news are the same news:

  • Like every entrepreneurial endeavor, if you, the kindle author embraces these changes, not only could you exponentially increase your income and influence, you could create a real legacy for yourself. Authority, celebrity, wealth, fame,
  • if you ignore these changes, your business model will one day fail and your work will fall flat time after time, and you may not even know why.

IF you embrace these changes

  • You can recycle ideas and present them in a better way and make money all over again.
  • You have access to technology that allows us to make things better and make smarter decisions
  • The good news is that if you learn what it takes to make a classic, we will profit from our books for the rest of our lives, not just for a year.
  • The good news is that this is yet another gold mine, one that’s perhaps exponentially more lucrative than the old one.
  • The good news is that, if you work a little bit harder, you will see an exponential increase in

Influence, importance, legacy, how many people you help
and how much money you make.
The good news is that writing these kinds of books will also do far more for the author than writing quick and easy ebooks.

  • They will put us into a higher Authority class.
  • Give us a much larger audience, one which will follow us from book to book.


A pretty good eBook, properly promoted with enough momentum,

    might pay you 2,000 a month for a year and then drop off. 

A great classic book might pay you 2 million dollars a year for 30, 40, 50+ years.

A Typical eBook

$ 45,000 (very rare)


A book like 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

$ 60,000,000.00 over time

 We will take a look at 

  1. The differences between quick & easy books and classics.
  2. Defining the aspects of a classic book
  3. what it takes to create a classic,
  4. How to design a book to be most effective,
  5. what types of books are going to be the future
  6. what makes that type of book stand out and differentiate itself from everything else and
  7. how we can create classics that will last through the ages.
  • It’s going to be harder, but it’s going to be more profitable, make us feel like we’ve actually done something we’re proud of. 


The Future & the Future of Ebooks

In The Future We Will Have 

big data tools that can measure and quantify and teach us about all kinds of things

– consumer behavior


– user experience

– what books would be profitable

– tools at our disposal that will allow us to do more with less.

– tools that will make creating thtings easier and easier.

– tools that will allow us all to do things like graphic design easy and for free.

Books will be written using

  • User Experience
  • Content Strategy
  • Interaction Design
  • Visual Design
  • Information Architecture
  • User interface
  • Typography
  • Usability
  • Functionality



Content can be highly satisfying but not useful,

It can also be highly useful but not highly satisfying.


The future of ebooks
What will books look like in the future?

  • A hybrid between a magazine a textbook & a novel
  • Immersive, 3D — audio, video
  • High aesthetic value
  • Author as brand
  • Beautiful
  • Slow boil=better
  • The fine art of explanation
    • packaging
    • framing


What makes a mediocre how-to book?

  • It’s too introductory without providing any depth of understanding
  • It explains how, but not why.
  • Has a sloppy cheap feeling to the cover, the writing, etc.
  • Not formatted well
  • No pictures
  • Doesn’t have a well thought out balanced design
  • Is simple in a bad way
  • Nothing new and extremely basic
  • Offers one way of doing things
  • Has no deeper idea, uninspiring
  • Has no real ‘voice’ — feels cold and impersonal.

What makes a Great Book?

  •  Great books make us laugh, they make us smile, they reveal secrets to us, they surprise us. They confirm our assumptions and they challenge our assumptions. Great books give us fresh perspectives on common ideas. Great books inspire us to greatness, they tell us that life is short, remind us that dreams can come true, they inspire us to action. They have a mission, they give us faith to believe in bigger things. They remind us of overlooked or forgotten fundamentals. 

What makes a Legacy Book?

  •        Lennon/McCartney — A Balance of Opposites.

     McCartney’s music on it’s own was mainstream, cheesy and inoffensive. It was too safe and ordinary. So ordinary that it may not have ever had much chance for real success if Lennon had not pushed McCartney to have an edge.

Lennon, by contrast, was acerbic, sarcastic, abrasive, and revolutionary. He wanted to do challenge the norm, to do things differently, he wanted to do things ‘the wrong way’, he wanted to experiment. McCartney reigned him in.

Austin Kleon’s book A”Steal Like An Artist” has a similar dichotomy; offering interesting new ideas “All artist’s steal” but also rehashing classic advice ”

  • A legacy book acts as a perfect ‘introduction’ to the topic
  • It offers the reader everything they need to know on a subject that is timeless
  • expertly and elegantly balances
    • original new ideas
    • classic ‘overlooked’ basics.
    • new twists on old ideas
  • It strikes a balance between specific and abstract — the book could be about the principles of graphic design, but it’s broadly about design and creativity in general, and anyone who wants to be more creative in any aspect of their lives could benefit from the book.
  • Repetition — a theme tied together
  • A legacy book has a deeper ‘whole idea’
  • It’s not just informative, it’s a movement. It’s a mini manifesto.
  • Usually has an ideology, a new theory/mindset, a philosophy, principles, and a system

    Manifesto: A manifesto is a published verbal declaration of the intentions, motives, or views of the issuer, be it an individual, group, political party or government. A manifesto usually accepts a previously published opinion or public consensus and/or promotes a new idea with prescriptive notions for carrying out changes the author believes should be made. It often is political or artistic in nature, but may present an individual’s life stance or worldview. Manifestos relating to religious belief are generally referred to as creeds

The New Gold Rush

A new ebook gold rush is on the way. Remember when ebooks were just becoming popular? There weren’t that many out there, and suddenly entrepreneurs figured out it could be very lucrative to create books of all kinds, especially non-fiction how-to books, and books of the self-help variety in general. Maybe you were there, maybe you were one of the ones who made it big in that first ebook gold rush.

Why was it such a gold mine anyway?

Well, think about this; when ebooks were just becoming popular, there were so many subjects that hadn’t been written about yet in that format. The books that had been written before ebooks came out were long and expensive. They usually were fairly general and only offered one point of view, or were more advanced books for experts.

When Kindle books came along, that all changed.

Short, cheap books could be made that gave the reader exactly the kind of information they were looking for.

Books on all kinds of niche subjects could be written and could be profitable.

It was easy to compile a lot of how-to information from the internet and synthesize it into a profitable ebook.

That particular gold rush is coming to an end, and a new one is just beginning

– Ebooks aren’t going anywhere, they’re going to become more and more ubiquitous

– But Ebooks are changing and authors must change to survive.





The Songwriter/Producer Starter Pack!

The Songwriters/Producer’s Starter Pack

If you want to make music, but don’t think you can, then this is for you. I promise you that as long as you stick with it, you will be able to do it.

I started this post as a straightforward starter’s pack, in honor of the hilarious Starter Pack meme, the newest viral trend surging through the cyber zeitgeist and making us snicker.

I was thinking about the most basic things that you need to have in your arsenal if you’re serious about getting started making real-deal radio quality music.


& you’ll find that making music can be one of the most amazing experiences you can have.

It can seriously be one of the most uplifting, exhilarating and blissful experiences in the world.

Imagine you’ve just created an awesome little groove.

It’s super catchy, like it could be the chorus of a really catchy song on the radio.

You let it play over and over, you turn your speakers up was high as they’ll go.

And no matter what kind of music it is, you bang your head and dance and strut around the room, rocking the hell out, swimming in the awesome sound that you created.

It’s utterly indescribable.

It’s as though you feel at once proud and privileged, proud because you made it, and privileged because you’re the first person to hear this amazing new music.

A Word On Musical Aptitude:

People tell me all the time the wish they could make music, these are people who love music themselves. This is what I tell them:

 If you love music, then you understand music.

Musical aptitude isn’t about being able to pick up a particular instrument play like a virtuoso.It’s not about knowing chord names and scales.

Our appreciation and passion for music doesn’t require we have some kind of academic understanding of how music works

Then you know far more about it than you realize.


Why should you listen to me though?

I’ve spent countless thousands of hours learning, then writing recording and producing and arranging music. I had to teach myself, I had to make all the mistakes and learn all the  lessons the hard way. That’s why I know.

& why I wanted to write this, because I wanted to encourage anyone to start making music if you ever wanted to. Because you should and you can! 


You will need:

–  Computer
–  DAW (Digital Audio Workstation)
–  Audio Interface
–  MIDI Keyboard
–  Microphone
–  Pawnshop Bass

So today we’re going to talk about Computers

So, Mac or PC?
Answer: Both / Either

You may well think that you need a Mac to make music.


When I started, that’s what I thought. The older generation preaches using Macs with religious fervor.

Why? Because it used to be true when they started out, 20+ years ago.. So yes, Mac used to be the only option.

Now? Honestly PC & Mac are equals. Separate but equal. Neither one is inherently preferable. So don’t worry if you don’t have a Mac.

I started out making and producing music on a PC, because well, that’s all I had. People might tell you that you need a Mac for making music, it’s bullshit.

In fact, when I started making music and producing music 10 years ago, I was using my refurbished Dell 1330 XPS I initially got for taking notes & doing homework in college.


Dell PC

Believe me, I’ve made plenty of radio quality music right inside that an old refurbished 1330. It had something like 2 gigs of RAM. It’s not ideal, but it works.

Sure you could’ve fried egg on the motherboard, but it worked.



Later we’ll discuss Digital Audio Workstations. 








Perspectives on Going Viral

The WordPress.com Blog

You wake up one morning, check your phone, and spit out your coffee. You have thousands of likes on Facebook, hundreds of retweets, and an inbox that has exploded. Your little blog — which normally gets a dozen views per day and has an audience of exactly two, your spouse and mother — has been shared all over the internet, and that post you wrote last night, in your pajamas, has gone viral.

Going viral is different for everyone, but it can be a strange blend of exciting and terrifying — and very emotional, as writer Sam Dylan Finch described in his recent interview. Here, four bloggers on WordPress.com share their experiences.

Gretchen Kelly, Drifting Through My Open Mind

Gretchen KellyLast November, Gretchen Kelly published “The Thing All Women Do That You Don’t Know About,” in which she described all the tactics women employ to move safely through a world of sexism and harassment. Nearly…

View original post 1,719 more words