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The Creative Shift with Dan Blank
21 minutes | May 18, 2021
How to Navigate a Creative Reset
Today I want to talk about the concept of a creative reset, and share advice on how to make incremental improvements to your work. I will frame this all in my own creative reset, which I last shared on this podcast in December. You can find out more about my work at wegrowmedia.com and on Instagram and Twitter at @DanBlank.
52 minutes | Apr 27, 2021
"I had to think, what kind of artist am I, and what do I want to be doing?" My Interview with Rebecca Green
This is the third time I've interviewed artist and writer Rebecca Green, and each time we have tracked how she is transitioning her career to find more personal fulfillment in the creative process, as well as greater success. Today we talk about the risks she is taking in focusing more on certain kinds of artwork, the pros and cons of social media, why she loves her email newsletter, and the importance of an artistic community.
58 minutes | Apr 21, 2021
"I had the supportive community, because I had been supporting them for all these years." My interview with Angela Abreu
Angela Abreu is a writer, and founder of the Dominican Writers Association. She shares her own story of launching her poetry book, and how she turned it into a performance, selling 100 tickets with huge support from her network. She talked about the value of being a part of a literary community and how that forges the relationships you need to share your own work in a meaningful way. She also shares how she created the Dominican Writers Association and how that has grown to support so many writers.
59 minutes | Apr 14, 2021
"I had so much creativity waiting to come out." My Interview Emma Gannon
Emma Gannon is an author and host of the podcast Ctrl Alt Delete. She shares her journey to becoming a writer, and what it is like to switch to writing novels after a successful nonfiction career. Along the way, she was "rejected once a day" from magazines she submitted work to, only to find people loved her writing that she shared on her blog. She explains how that platform grew into an amazing career, and how she manages her time in order to write novels, nonfiction, host her podcast, and so much more!
54 minutes | Mar 31, 2021
"I had to figure out how to make writing the central part of my life." My Interview with Author Donna Hemans
Donna Hemans' first two books were published nearly 20 years apart, and in our interview, she describes the difference in launching each. She also shares the journey between them, where she began two manuscripts that are still unpublished, only to find that her next idea was the one ready to be finished and shared with the world. We also discuss her getting her MFA, balancing a day job and writing, and why she now owns a co-working studio for writers. Her latest novel is Tea By the Sea.
58 minutes | Mar 24, 2021
“I’ve created nearly 10,000 products, but creating this book was the most incredible experience of my life." My Interview with Melissa Bernstein
Melissa Bernstein is the co-founder of Melissa & Doug, where she has designed nearly 10,000 toys and created a $500 million dollar company. In this conversation, we talk about the importance of failure in the creative process and what it means to live and create with authenticity. She also gets very honest about mental health and why her new book has been the most incredible creative experience of her life. The book is called: LifeLines: An Inspirational Journey from Profound Darkness to Radiant Light.
57 minutes | Mar 11, 2021
"I would buy records with my lunch money." My Interview with DJ Skeme Richards
Skeme Richards has not only found a way to grow his creativity and audience, but fill his life with what inspires him. As a DJ and collector, he has found a way to infuse everything part of his life with the art, culture, and people he appreciates most. We discuss why he chose to not make his creative passion his day job, how his work as a DJ grew globally over the years, and how he has embraced the web to fill his life with like-minded people and share his music in new ways.
56 minutes | Mar 4, 2021
Behind the Scenes of a New York Times Bestselling Book Launch, with KJ Dell'Antonia
Today I talk with KJ Dell'Antonia about the huge creative shift she made from writing nonfiction to fiction. We take a behind the scenes look at her book launch, which she and I began working together on it months before release. She shares specifics of what she did, and how her novel, The Chicken Sisters, came to be picked by Reese Witherspoon's book club, become an Indie Next List pick, and land on the New York Times bestseller list. You can find KJ at https://www.instagram.com/kjda/
64 minutes | Feb 22, 2021
From the NFL to Helping People Reach Their Full Potential, with Anthony Trucks
In today's episode, Anthony Trucks takes us through his story of reaching the pinnacle of his dream -- joining the NFL -- only to having that dream crash down around him. But then, he found alignment: The clarity, the drive, the balance that so many of us desire. I loved this advice from Anthony in our chat; that to get what you want, "you have to go past logic." You can find Anthony at https://anthonytrucks.com. His new book, Identity Shift: Upgrade How You Operate to Elevate Your Life comes out in August.
66 minutes | Feb 15, 2021
How a Creative Community Fuels a Creative Life, with author Amanda Stern
Growing up in New York City's Greenwich Village, Amanda Stern met Shel Silverstein when she was 12, lived on the same block and Bob Dylan, and described it as: "the whole village was like a stage, and everyone was in a show." We explore her success as a writer with 9 children's books, 2 young adult books, a novel, and a memoir, and the value of being a part of a creative community. She says: "Making connections and building community is one of the best ways to generate ideas and come up with new projects."
69 minutes | Jan 28, 2021
“I Started Building Creative Muscle.” The Creative Shift of Author Julian Winters
Today I would like to share the story of how one writer found his path to create, publish, and share his novels. Everything about this journey is so inspiring to me. In this conversation with Julian Winters, we discuss finding permission to create, taking a huge risk to pursue your creative goals, managing mental health, how one person can radically change your career for the better, impostor’s syndrome, and the responsibility an author has to get people interested in their writing.
25 minutes | Jan 19, 2021
Perfection vs Progress
Last week I sent out my newsletter to thousands of people, and in the very first line was a typo. Today I want to talk about how this typo represents what so many writers and creators tell me they fear: making a simple mistake that will sink their career. This can cause them to resist creating, resist publishing, and resist sharing. I discuss how this relates to impostor's syndrome, and how perfection limits our potential, and our progress.
60 minutes | Jan 10, 2021
"If there is a moment where you feel lost, find a new path that energizes and inspires you." My interview with Amber Coleman-Mortley
Today I speak with Amber Coleman-Mortley who shares her wisdom on making a creative shift in your life. It includes "delusions of grandeur," a "social contribution of making the world a better place," and "needing to have a plan." She talks about the difficult parts of transitions: "[When] I took a pivot, I had a huge confidence drop. [I asked myself], what's my identity?" Her advice: "If there is a moment where you feel lost, find a new path that energizes and inspires you."
29 minutes | Jan 7, 2021
Why I Create and Share
Today I look back on the moment 25 years ago that became the birth of this podcast. But not only that, I reflect on why I create, and why I share. In this episode I share the story of how I created a zine in the early 1990s interviewing my favorite bands like Oasis, Blur, Weezer, and They Might Be Giants, and how that turned into the podcast you are listening to now. I also share why these experiences are the foundation for not only creativity, but filling my life with fulfilling connections and moments.
9 minutes | Dec 11, 2020
A Creative Reset
The last quarter of every year, I focus on a creative reset. This is time to collect and organize my ideas and with a sense of intention, prepare a sense of creative clarity for the next year. In this episode, I share a bit about that process and why I'm pausing this podcast for the month of December. But it will return in January with some amazing new episodes. Thank you!
74 minutes | Nov 10, 2020
"I got diagnosed with depression and anxiety, but the book was my bright spot." My Interview with Veronica Miller Jamison
Today, picture book illustrator and textile designer Veronica Miller Jamison, shares how she made a major career shift, and how that led to illustrating her first book. She discusses the value of surrounding yourself with people who appreciate the craft you are learning, and how that community then became major supporters of her work. She is wonderfully honest about mental health, and how navigating anxiety and depression is a part of this journey.
57 minutes | Oct 28, 2020
Quitting Her Job to Finish Her Novel: The Creative Shift of Naomi Jackson
Just as Naomi Jackson received a big promotion and raise at a job she loved, she quit. In doing so, she moved from New York City to the cornfields of Iowa with the goal of finishing her novel. In today's interview, she shares incredible wisdom on the value of having a community around your writing, why you need to be courageous, and the importance of listening to the generations who came before you.
52 minutes | Oct 22, 2020
"Because I was finally following my passion, everything fell into place.” My interview with author Gigi Pandian
Gigi Pandian is a USA Today bestselling and Agatha Award-winning mystery author of 10 books. Today we explore the huge creative shift she made to stop pursuing a PhD in order to fill her life with more creativity develop her career as an author. She shares the long road to getting the first book published, how that book found a readership because of her active involvement in the community of readers and writers, and how that got her the book deals she hoped for for two of her series.
62 minutes | Oct 14, 2020
From a 25+ Year Career in Education to Her First Book, with Valerie Bolling
For years, Valerie Bolling worked in education. One day, a visit from her nieces inspired her to write some stories. She set a goal to get published and “wrote and wrote and wrote.” Through a Twitter pitch, her book was acquired by a publisher. To find her agent, it took more than 150 queries (50 of which came after her deal for the book.) Valerie shares so much inspiring advice on creating and sharing. You can find out more about her and her book, Let's Dance! at valeriebolling.com.
63 minutes | Oct 6, 2020
How Star Wars Led to an Amazing Creative Shift, with Steve Sansweet
Today I want to share the story of an amazing creative shift. Steve Sansweet was working as a journalist when he was allowed to see an early screening of Star Wars in 1977. That day changed his life, and he went on to amass the world's largest collection of Star Wars memorabilia. He eventually left journalism to work inside Lucasfilm, and today runs Rancho Obi-Wan, an interactive museum of Star Wars memorabilia. His story is incredible, and inspiring.
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