Parallel Mind Has Moved!

Most people make a New Year’s resolution. Mine was to make my life and my work easier and more fun. This blog is one of my favorite pastimes, so I am keeping it, but it is now completely refocused and redesigned.

In the past, I took on too much: too many blogs, too many websites, and I couldn’t keep up with all of it. So I got out my pruning scissors, and as they say, a lot ended up on the editing-room floor.

It’s taken me about three weeks to totally redo, revamp, and consolidate two blogs and two websites.I’ve collapsed two websites and one blog into the new Parallelmindzz site, pictured above. If you are on my mailing list, you will automatically receive the new blog postings in your email.

Join the newsletter here.

Dark Lyrics Inspire an Animated Short

I just love this spoken song. I am convinced that the idiom “footloose and fancy free” was the inspiration for the whole thing. Many artists work this way, starting with an idea and working backwards. Here is a great animated short, “Aging Young Rebel” by Jonathan McCallum.

The Aging Young Rebel Gentle Cruelty” by Dj Food

An Aging Young Rebel
Called What’s His Name
Wanted to be different
while he stayed the same

Then he couldn’t
he just couldn’t
No matter what he would try
Told be his mother

An aging old thing
You better go see clever
You give clever a ring
Which he did
Called him up

Just so Mommy wouldn’t cry
Clever hear his story
About different and the same
You crazy
This some silly game

Oh no
Like Mommy said
I gotta straighten up my head
Clever is so clever
Is cleverness enough

Can you help this ageing rebel
Do you really have the stuff
Bet you don’t have
Bet the bread that you’ll pass the buck instead

Clever sends our hero
To a funny darkened room
Where a crowd of cunning listens
Giggles in the gloom

That’s your problem aging rebel
Don’t you really know the score
You crazy think you’re going to change this crazy world
Better see your self a shrink

Cunningly the argue about our boy
Who’s breaking down the door
Now he’s running down the dark
Diabolical awaits

Grabs him by the ankle
Ani’t it just like fate
Diabolical laughs
In an alley full of suit

Forget the same
you’ll be different now
Somewhat shorter on one side
Let go
Oh no

Would you diabolical inside
Panic in his brain pulls and gets away
Loses him a foot it’s a dark and evil day
See him running limping blood

Something soft is just ahead
Something soft is gentle
He’s fallen at her side
She comforts him with kisses
He dreams of suicide

Gentle is so gentle
Grabs the trouble by its root
Bandages his stump
Cuts off his other foot

So you see it seems to me a gentle kind of cruelty
Ageing rebels older a little wiser maybe too
Gentleness has fixed him
Does he look like me and you

Footless and fancy free
Think how happy Mom will be
Footless and fancy free
Think how happy Mom will be

New Release: Bird Seed, a rather unconventional book on social media

Bird Seed, a rather unconventional book on social media

Just released; a book on professional social media.

If you are pursued by a growing mob of Facebook friends whom you have never met…

If you are deluged with double opt-in messages when you can’t remember a single opt…

If you find yourself confused by application upgrades that downgrade your experience…

If you are unable to see the social media forest for all the meaningless trees of content…

If you are afraid that your last precious half-hour of free time may be on the chopping block of Twitter…

If you bemoan the disappearance of time, depth, and real meaning…

If you find it sad that your iPhone has replaced your dog as your constant companion…

If you suspect your wife has left you for her blog…
…then this book may be for you.

Ebook edition, soon in print.

Discover how to brand without marketing, how to promote without advertising, and how to advance your cause, yourself, or your business with professional social media.

See more here:

Paperback book $12.98

Kindle Edition $4.99

All other Ebook formats (pdf, epub, etc) $4.99

I Bet You That I Can Write a New Book in a Week


I started writing this book yesterday. I bet I can finish the entire book by midnight next Thursday. For me to win, the book will have to be finished and ready to be emailed by Thursday midnight. I won’t have time to have it copy-edited, but all the text will be finished. The cover is already designed.

If I lose, I owe everyone who participated in my bet a free copy of my last ebook, The Way of Love. If I win, then anyone who participates in the bet will have the opportunity to buy the advance copy of my new book for $4.99 (a 50% discount). The book will be available on Amazon’s Kindle, B&N’s Nook, and as a beautiful PDF.

This bet is one I placed with myself: I put together an outline and started writing it on Friday, so the book is due on Thursday, July 21st. I decided to make my bet public and see if the bet will make my deadline more real to me.


This will be an ebook; it is modeled on the style and brevity of Seth Godin’s book, “the dip.” It is about how to brand, market and work on social media. It’s a how-to, but it is not a technical book. I call it the “anti-social guide to social media;” it is quirky, and easy to read. I won’t disclose the title to you but the subtitle is:

“a really short, easy-to-read book that shows how to use social media to advance your cause, yourself or your business”

Here is the intro/backcover:

“If you feel victimized by nonsensical Ebay ads in your search sidebar; if you are pursued by a growing mob of Facebook friends whom you could have never met; if you are daily deluged with double opt-in messages when you can’t remember even a single opt; if you find yourself confused by application upgrades that downgrade your experience; if you are unable to see the social media forest for all the meaningless trees of content; if you are afraid that your last precious half-hour of free time may be on the chopping block of Twitter; if you bemoan the disappearance of time, depth, and real meaning; if you find it sad that your iPhone has replaced your dog as your constant companion; and if you suspect your wife has left you for her blog…

…then this book may be for you.”


To see my books, including your possible free copy of “The Way of Love,” go to:

To participate, send me an email with the header, “BOOK ME!” to:

(fill in my name below)

That ought to build a real fire under me!

Films on Artists Creates Inspirational Documentaries About Artists



Following the success of our 2010 International, all-medium juried art show and award of the top prize of our “Artists Exhibition Package”, FilmsOnArtists is proud to announce our 2011 competition.

40 artists will be juried by our judge David Masello for a show at the FilmsOnArtists Gallery | Chelsea.

From that show one artist will be selected to have a solo show, reception and a screening of the documentary we create about their art.

FilmsOnArtists (FOA) is a new media production company based in the Chelsea district, NYC that creates enlightening and inspirational documentaries about artists around the globe.


Current artist in focus

Assemblage Artist, Bill Georgenes, Santa Fe, NM

“I’m a happy chappy all the time.   I can’t walk.  I can’t run.  I can’t dance.  I can’t hike.  I just stay here and work, maybe 15 hours a day.”


This year we are asking artists to contribute 10% of sales from the show as a contribution to FOA’s Haitian Childrens Art Project

at the Maranatha School and Orphanage in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti.

The Heart Only Wants to Be Free

Beyond all personal circumstances, beyond all social structures, beyond the politics of the day, beyond the hysteria of the media, only one thing is real: your heart wants to be free. Artists taste this freedom, because they experience it in their art, but we can, as a culture, as empowered individuals claim this freedom today.

How do I know this? Because I see it in my fellow artists work; I hear echos of that freedom in the lyrics of the music I hear. I know it because personal freedom is the touchstone of my work, because the very wind whispers of it to me.

Belong by R.E.M.


Her world collapsed early Sunday morning
She got up from the kitchen table
Folded the newspaper and silenced the radio
Those creatures jumped the barricades
And have headed for the sea, sea

Those creatures jumped the barricades
And have headed for the sea
She began to breathe
To breathe at the thought of such freedom
Stood and whispered to her child: belong
She held the child and whispered
With calm, calm: belong

Stood and whispered to her child; belong
She held the child and whispered
With calm, calm: belong

These barricades can only hold for so long
Her world collapsed early Sunday morning
She took the child held tight
Opened the window
A breath, this song, how long
And knew, knew: belong

Moby Deploys His Art to Help Save the Poor


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Here is an example of how artists can make a difference. Watch this music video, and tell me if you aren’t moved.

Moby has teamed up with by starring in and lending his new single “The Day” off of the forthcoming album “Destroyed” to a hard-hitting video that protests attacks on America’s most needy. In the “The Day — Moby and MoveOn Protest Budget Cuts on the Poor”, the artist explains why he joined over 30,000 Americans in a fast to protest against the budget cuts that could disproportionately hurt the most vulnerable in America.

The effort comes as the President and Republicans in Congress agreed to a budget that could severely impact the lives of the poor. Republicans are preparing even steeper cuts in their upcoming 2012 budget, including a proposal that would hand Medicare over to the insurance companies. The Republican 2012 budget is expected to come up for a vote in the House by the end of this week.

The fast was first launched by Reverend Jim Wallis of the Sojournors, and Ambassador Tony Hall. As word spread, more than 30,000 Americans joined thefast, as well as 28 members of Congress.

“Step Into Your Dream” Creative Brainstorming Session: Carlsbad Village Cooperative Network


“Step into Your Dream”

Do you dare to dream your biggest dream?

Aliyah will be offering group and individual Creative Caffeine brainstorming sessions at this meeting. Come with your thinking hat on! She will sign copies of her books “Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity” and “Pocket Parallel Mind” for attendees.

Monday, April 18, 2011
11:30 AM

Fresco Traoria
264 Carlsbad Village Drive Carlsbad, CA

The Baby and the Nipple

Know what feeds your soul, and seek it unerringly, despite all naysayers, as a baby seeks the nipple. It is your birthright. No one else can tell you what is right for you; at best, they can only speak of what is right for them; at worst, they will tell you of their own fears. Seek what fills your soul with light, love, and happiness.

Copyright Aliyah Marr

Dear Woman,

This video speaks volumes.

Based on the “Manifesto for Conscious Men,” a collectively-written document from a number of men who feel that a new definition of masculinity can help redress the imbalances of patriarchy and welcome a new era of loving appreciation between men and women. A group of these men speak from the heart and offer a collective apology, on behalf of their gender, for past abuses of men against women.

Real Time Delphi Global Art Project

Following is an email I am posting here on Parallel Mind for the benefit of my readers. Do I mind that they are using the same term — conscious creativity — that I coined in my book, Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity. No, not really; after all, who knows who was the first to use the phrase. Check it out: this seems to be a worthwhile endeavor.

C3 Center for Conscious Creativity MastheadOn behalf of the newly formed Arts/Media Node of The Millennium Project, we
have the honor and pleasure to invite those who are experienced and interested in the future of arts, media and entertainment to participate in a Real-Time Delphi at
Please register, and then when it asks for the code put: arts

The results will be published in the 2011 State of the Future report. The results will also be emailed to you.

The Arts/Media Node plans to use the results as inspiration to create and implement existing and future art forms to address global challenges. Just as the Florentine Camerata (an arts “think tank”) invented and produced the first European Opera in the late 1500s, the Arts/Media Node seeks to help invent and inspire the future of the arts, media, and entertainment – but this time on a global basis.

So, please go to and let’s help invent the future together.

All the best,

Kate McCallum, Chair Arts/Media Node
Joonmo Kwan, Co-Chair Arts/Media Node
Jerome Glenn, Executive Director, The Millennium Project

http://www.millennium-project. org/millennium/future_arts_ delphi.html

Art Lives on Your TV

Art Live logo 5in.png ArtLive.Tv is a pilot project that offers broadcasting to artists with a service that is built on the communication and support of the art community.

ArtLive wants to help artists recognize their potential and impress upon them that it is the belief in their work’s value that creates it worth. We will also use our platform to inform our viewers about the creative process that artist undertake when crafting the final result . We want to give the artists exposure to an international audience and support the marketing potential they may already have in place.

Follow us on Twitter:

Creative Inspiration for Your Ears

Click Image or Text Link Below to Play Audio File

Aliyah Marr speaks with Rhonda Smith about individual creative empowerment and social change. Aliyah states that there are more creative geniuses on Earth now than at any other time in the history of mankind. She says that if we rallied our individual creative power, we could change the world virtually overnight, eliminating pollution, crime, and inequality.

The Secret Desire of Fear


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The doctor interrupts the clown's fun.

I enjoy watching old episodes of Star Trek Voyager. A couple days ago I saw one about people the Voyager crew found imprisoned in stasis.

They were scheduled to wake up four years earlier. The crew finds out that the minds of the people in hibernation were kept active inside a virtual reality run by a computer. Something had gone horribly wrong: instead of providing a pleasant environment for the people in stasis, the computer generated a circus filled with characters that tortured them with the fears generated by their own imaginations.

Their minds were kept eternally awake in a virtual circus-like world dominated by a clown character representing fear. The people in stasis had not woken up on schedule, and in fact, two of the five had died of massive heart attacks brought on by the extreme stress generated by the circus of fear.

To rescue her people and the aliens caught within this world, Captain Katheryn Janeway, projects a hologram of herself as a substitute hostage.

Janeway's offer is flattering to Fear

Fear doesn’t know that Janeway is a hologram, and therefore not influenceable by the environment or by the characters in the virtual circus of fear. He is relishing the prospect of torturing someone of Janeway’s caliber and is willing to give up all the others in exchange for her. The clown is highly entertained by the idea of someone “choosing” to be with him. But when he finds out that Janeway is just a projection (like him), he begins to become afraid, knowing that he cannot live without a mind to live within.

Janeway tells him that she knows his secret (desire): she knows that Fear wants to be conquered. Fear needs to surrender to love/knowledge/acceptance/recognition/awareness/consciousness. Because Fear — knowing only fear, battle, war, and separation — cannot understand the higher concept of surrender, it has to be “conquered” — as if it is in a battle — by love.

Janeway is telling us that Fear exists to be defeated; that it’s “raison d’être” is to experience love through the unimaginable act of surrender — Fear unconsciously desires to be reunited with its polar opposite; in doing so, Fear achieves its real goal of surrender in order that it may become whole.

“I’m afraid,” Fear says just before he dissolves.

Janeway whispers, “I know.”

Copyright 2011 Aliyah Marr

Can We Evolve Our Society Consciously Following the Pattern of Nature?


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Visionary, futurist and proponent of conscious evolution Barbara Marx Hubbard talks about self, social and planetary evolution on this interview. She asks, “How did Nature climb up the ladder of greater complexity when the tendency is for entropy and disorder?”

Here’s a quote from the interview: “Natural evolution is non-linear, exponential–interactive connectivity of that which is novel, mutation, innovative. If Nature has been jumping to higher order for billions of years by this non-linear, very rapid connectivity of novel innovation/mutations; what if we do that purposely. What if we learn from the billions of years of Nature to evolve a system right now that can map, track and connect what’s working.

Claudia Wells calls this ‘evo-mimicry.’ Mimicing Nature’s evolutionary process of creating a higher evolutionary order. Take part in the operating manual for planet Earth. Find a way to rapidly connect the creative gift  that is in every one of us now from the simplest child all the way up to the most amazing innovations.

Our job in the next few years is to map, track and connect in a non-linear, exponential way on internet and in person that which is creative in us.”

To hear the whole recording, CLICK HERE.

Aliyah Marr Speaks on Creative Empowerment March 20th, 2011


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I will be speaking about creative empowerment on Rhonda Smith’s “Awake! Now What” blogtalk radio show: Sunday, March 20th 3pm PST.

Please tune in; I will be holding a free Creative Caffeine brainstorming session for anyone who calls in. To participate, go to:

and listen via the internet, or call in to the phone number listed on the website.

Play The Transformational Tarot Game


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This unusual Transformational Tarot Computer Game uses words and images to read what is current in your life. Find out where you are going, clear up mental confusion, divine another’s real motives, find your true path.

Guaranteed to give better advice than a bartender and it’s cheaper than visiting a psychologist. This game is available to play on all computers. (Not a printed deck.)

PLAY A SAMPLE GAME NOW, and let us know what you think!

A Creative Use of Facebook for Social Change


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“The Scrimms” is a live 8-episode thriller uses Facebook social networking features and creative programming for an experience that is part book, part TV show, and part live-theater.

The Scrimms premieres on Facebook (in your News Feed) March 8-15th at 9:00pm EST.

The Trailer

My Adventure in Publishing: Getting a Book into Print & on Kindle


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I get many questions from authors about publishing and promoting, so I decided to write an article about my experience in the hopes that it can help other authors. I write on the power of creativity, both for individual development and for social change. I use my books as a support for my workshops and seminars.

I have now 3 books on Kindle. My first book, “Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity,” has been in print for about 2 years now. I put it into Kindle first. That was relatively easy. Here is the print version (all print books are also on Amazon and other booksellers):

Parallel Mind on Kindle.

Next, I put my recent title, “Pocket Parallel Mind,” a 365 inspirational day-quote book for creative people on Kindle. This was a formatting nightmare, both in the print version and the Kindle version, due to the design of the book — I made a page for each quote, and designed the print edition with beautiful large light gray initial caps. In the print edition, I ran into trouble because the quality of the interior pages wasn’t up-to-snuff with the default line screen (an abismal 120 ls for those design techies out there). So I had to “manually” fill every initial cap and gray text with a Photoshop-generated fill. This resulted in a very unusual and subtle effect which I like very much. Designers and other creative folks really like the look of this printed book. The final results can be only seen in the actual print, but you can get an idea here:

I was able to approximate the design of Pocket Parallel Mind in Kindle by tweaking the code of the document. Of course, it can never be as beautiful as the print edition, but it costs the user a lot less. It looks really different than any other books on Kindle, though.

Pocket Parallel Mind on Kindle.

Next, I took my blog, and made a new book out of it. This was the easiest of the three books on Kindle. All I did was design the cover (I am a book designer too) and load the entire text into an HTML document with page breaks.

Celestial Navigation on Kindle.

However, the PDF version of Celestial Navigation is taking me much longer. Why? Because I have decided to illustrate it with my artwork–a painting per article. That is a huge task, but I am enjoying it.

Celestial Navigation in PDF format

Another LinkedIn user in a different group complains that he lost “thousands” of dollars with Kindle when they allowed users to share his book with other Kindle users. It seems that you cannot turn off the share option.

However, I view Kindle as a way to sell my print and my beautiful full-color books. So, I have made two advertising pages for my website with my books on the Kindle version: a page in the front of the book and another page in the back. The ad says something like: “If you like this book on Kindle, you should see it in full color (or in print).”

The other cool thing about Kindle is that you can update your book very quickly. I recommend that authors who have something to say try saying it as many ways as possible. If you have a very expensive book, then don’t put the whole thing on Kindle: instead put an “introductory” book to your information on Kindle, and use it as an advertisement for your actual book, which they buy directly from you on your website or on Amazon. If you have made a PDF version, the profits are 100% yours!

I write on creative development, and am a creative development coach. I help authors, designers, and other creative people achieve their dreams, whether it is to create a business, get published, or fulfill some other dream.
@parallelmind (twitter)

An Interview with Trust Art by Tracy Candido

Public art is for the people. Whether object-based, performative, or interactive, public artworks are created to enhance the landscape of a public space by giving communities something out of the ordinary to reflect on, consider, and engage with. Trust Art, founded by Seth Aylmer and Jose Serrano-McClain, is an organization and philanthropic initiative that is not only invested in public art, the artists that create it, and the communities that share it, but also in finding ways to sustain the lifeline of public art projects. Trust Art has developed a three-year cycle that involves “shareholders,” community members that invest money, time, and other resources into public projects in exchange for “shares,” which are redeemed upon the project’s auction at the end of the three-year cycle. Currently Trust Art is producing and supporting the growth of 10 public art projects in New York City and around the world, all of which are invested in by “shareholders,” community members, and a network of artists. I recently sat down with Seth and Jose of Trust Art to discuss the history of the organization and their current pursuits.


JS: The idea of Trust Art goes back to our first driving question and problem, which is that there are people who have fame and social capital, and people who need it. Five years ago, when we first formed our partnership, Paris Hilton was the most notorious media story/non-media story. It seemed like we had reached a new level of absurdity with the distance between the people who had attention and the people who didn’t have attention who could use attention—people like us, people like our friends who have something to give. In a way, we started this as a documentary to create a fictional celebrity out of thin air.

SA: It’s called Fame Game now; it’s an online business and media site. It ranks people rising and falling in the media, and it has advertising, which brings in revenue. We don’t work at the company anymore, but Trust Art came out of that.


Pocket Parallel Mind Now in Print!

Check it out on Amazon or better yet, buy directly from me from my new website:
Toys & Tools for Creative People

(For a limited time the ebook version of the book is available FREE to subscribers of this newsletter. Just subscribe to get the download link.)

Pocket Parallel Mind is a book of inspirational quotes for creative thinkers and those who wish to creatively transform their lives. Based upon Twitter-like quips from the first book, Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity, Pocket Parallel Mind is laid out like a calendar; one quote per day. Includes a table of contents, and a convenient index of concepts. Perfect for anyone who works in a creative field—musicians, visual artists, designers, actors, scriptwriters, mathematicians, etc. Others interested in personal development through creative development will also find this book an inspirational resource.

Tips on How to Publish a Book on Kindle



I’ve posted my first book, Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity and my soon-to-be-released book Celestial Navigation on Kindle. I found it an interesting experience from a technical and marketing point of view.

Parallel Mind has been out for two years, but I haven’t even published Celestial Navigation in PDF format. Celestial Navigation is the book that I am making from the postings on this blog over the last two years since Parallel Mind was first published. (I will offer Celestial Navigation in PDF format to all subscribers of my blog for FREE. I am requesting a donation of everyone else. It will be illustrated with my paintings in full-color. Here’s a preview of Celestial Navigation–>)

I wanted to make Celestial Navigation free on Kindle, but they won’t let me do that, so it is selling for a reasonable $4.99, while Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity retails for $9.88. Both these books are available on Amazon UK as well. Subscribers of this blog will get access to the free full-color version of Celestial Navigation when it is available.

Celestial Navigation now on Kindle

Click to see Kindle version

Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity now on Kindle

Click to see Kindle version


This was an interesting exercise in retrofitting two beautiful books into an ultra-simple text-threaded HTML document with no layout, color or design, other than the cover.

For those of you who wish to publish on Kindle, I have some tips that may help you.

First, give up any idea of designing the interior. You have even less design control than you do with Word, and much less control than you do in current web design. If you are not a designer, you might not notice how constrained this medium is, but a true graphic designer may find this format pretty hard to work with. It is easier to put a book in Kindle if you haven’t yet published it as a printed book, which is why Celestial Navigation became a Kindle book before it has been even published as a PDF ebook, which is my normal practice.

If your book is in Word, you can choose to publish it as an HTML document, but Word, being a Microsoft product, puts a lot of unnecessary tags in the document, some of them proprietary only to Word(!). This will muck up your Kindle book; you don’t want to spend a lot of time taking out the code that MS Word puts in.

After much research, I found that the Mac had a simple program that served me quite well: Text Edit. I simply pasted my Word document into Text Edit and saved it as a HTML document. Then I went into Dreamweaver and fixed the code.

If you are a web designer who has worked with early web design, you will have a distinct advantage over anyone else, as Kindle is basically early web technology, a primitive form of HTML.

Here are the tags that you can use:

  • Heading tags, such as: <H3></H3>
  • Paragraph and line breaks: <p></p><br>
  • Alignment (left, right, center): <p align=”center”></p>
  • Bold and italic: <i></i> <strong></strong>

That’s about it. You can define the end of a chapter by forcing a page break in the document, which is basically one long scrolling HTML page.

The tag for the page break is: <mbp:pagebreak />


I was unable to see how I could publish Pocket Parallel Mind on Kindle with any kind of design at all. I will put it on Kindle without the design as just inspirational one-a-day quotes when I get the time. I am looking forward to publishing all three books i the Parallel Mind series on Barnes & Noble’s color Nook, which should give me an option to show color illustrations, if not to format my book. This should work great for Celestial Navigation, which has about 80 full-color illustrations of my paintings.


Here are some more links to help you publish on Kindle:

140 Characters or Less: Tweet Quotes from Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity

These same Tweet quotes from the original Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity are now in print in a new inspirational creative-quote-a-day called, Pocket Parallel Mind.

I call this new book the A.D.D version of my first book. ;-)

Now taking advance orders for the print edition.  Pocket Parallel Mind won’t be available in stores or on Amazon until 2011, but I am offering it direct to my readers before publication.

To order this book directly from the author, go HERE.

I have been pulling quotes from my book and posting them on Twitter. Feel free to follow me on Twitter:

You can also retweet them on Twitter if you want or share them with your friends.


“The power of creative thought can impel you to excel in any medium, in any field, any subject.” — Aliyah Marr

“Whatever you dream is available to you; first you must know how to use your creative potential.” — Aliyah Marr

“An artist is not defined by his work, but by the power of his creative thought.” — Aliyah Marr

“Manifestation is the natural, spontaneous conclusion that follows inspiration.” — Aliyah Marr

“Art is about change, exploration, and about the courage to know yourself.” — Aliyah Marr

“If you follow a path of conscious change you are walking in the very footsteps of giants.” — Aliyah Marr

“When will you allow yourself the life you deserve?” A voice is whispering in your ear: today is the day.” — Aliyah Marr


Final Blurbs for Pocket Parallel Mind Are In

Pocket Parallel Mind, 365 Days of Creative Inspiration in Your Pocket

Thanks to those who took the time to review my book and submit an advance review. Stay tuned to this blog for the free gift that I promised way back in October (this took longer than I thought!).

Here are the advance reviews of Pocket Parallel Mind that made it into the book just before going to press:

“A stunning example of non-invasive brain surgery.”—Mark Blanchard

“Creativity Booster: Pocket Parallel Mind takes you on a walk on the right side.  Use it as  light reading to turn on the light in your creative right-brain.”—Nacho Villoch

“I think the multi-talented creative people who are my clients will love this book…if they can stop coming up with new ideas long enough to read it!”—Lisa Rothenstein, The Da Vinci Dilemma

“Consumed daily, these tidbits of brainfood will improve your creative output, all without that annoying fish-oil burp.” —Michael Plishka, ZenStorming Solutions, LLC

“Warning: this book is dangerous, now my brain is pestering me with creative ideas.” —Thornton Sully, A Word With You Press

“The better of my two minds is thinking up a storm somewhere in a parallel universe.” —Salvatore Buttaci, Flashing My Shorts

“I had no second thought’s on reading this book! Which in a parallel mind would total four. Therefore I read it twice.” —Paul Fitzgerald, Founder UGotStyle.Com

“Mr. Hyde recommended I read this book, now I’m beside myself with bizarre ideas coming from my Parallel Mind.” —Dr. Jekeyl, M.D.

“Can I have my crayons back, now?” —Thomas Sully, Portrait Painter

“Read this and you’ll have the creative, brilliant and witty brain that I originally intended for my creation.” —Dr. Frankenstein

“Day 22…There’s the rub!” —William Shakespeare

“I’d like to comment, but I’m a little pressed at the moment.” —Guttenburg

“Sautée the left brain with onions. Whip the right with cream & sugar until stiff peaks form. Serve warm.” —Julia Childs

“E=MC2 was only the beginning. With this book, you can come up with a new theory of relativity that will blast my little theory out of the (parallel) universe.” — Albert Einstein

Sybill: “I’m of two minds about this book.”
Sybill: “No you aren’t.”

“I recommend reading this book: don’t insert this book in your shoe, it’s uncomfortable.” —Dr. Scholls, M.D.

“Best book I’ve read in a very long time.” —Methuselah

WANTED: You to Review My Book


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Click to go to writing competition.

The Reviews for Pocket Parallel Mind Are Pouring In!

Below are the entries so far for the reviews that go in the book. These are not the final blurbs, so if you want to write one for Einstein or Sybill that you think is funnier, let me have it! Remember, I can take only one per celebrity (dead celebrities only please).


The following blurbs are by Susanne Riehle:

Albert Einstein: I postulate: if two sides of a brain traveling in opposite directions gain velocity, then you have one big mess.

Sybill: I’m of two minds about this book
Sybill: No you aren’t

Julia Childs: I prefer the left side of the brain lightly sautéed with onions. Whip the other with cream & sugar until stiff peaks form. Serve.

Henry Ford: I don’t get it.

Dr. Seuss: Spit your mind. Part 1, part 2. Insert in shoe. In the hole, now a sole. Ur cow does chew it, what a moo when it moos it.

Dr. Scholl: If you insert this book in your shoe, it’s uncomfortable. I don’t like it and don’t recommend it.


To get your blurb / name in my newest book, please go here:

Pocket Parallel Mind

Writing Contest: Get Published and Get a Free Gift

Pocket Parallel Mind, 365 Days of Creative Inspiration in Your Pocket

You may or may not know that I have been very busy putting together a new book that is based upon excerpts (quotes) from my first book, Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity. I tweeted these excerpts on Twitter for 2 years after publication of the book.

Now I’ve assembled the quotes into a new book that is intended to be a 365 day inspirational book for creative people. (Another book is coming that is for those who want to be more creative.)

I would like to have a page in the front of the book for blurbs by people who love it– you!

The catch???

I want them to be funny, and off the wall — in the same vein as the copy on the back cover.

Here’s another clue to how to write your blurb:

In Yoko Ono’s book Grapefruit, the dedication reads:

“Burn this book after you read it.” — Yoko

“This is the greatest book I’ve ever burned.” — John Lennon

Click on the image to read the cover copy.

Here’s what I would like:

  • One or more funny blurbs in the humorous style that you see on the cover.
  • No more than 140 characters, including spaces and credit.
    • You may write them in your own name, and / or in the name of famous dead creative (scientists, explorers, artists, composers, etc.) people from history. The credit on the blurb will be as you have written it on the blurb (i.e Einstein will be Einstein, not Joe Blow, alias Einstein). If you want a blurb in your own name, submit one.
    • You can write all the blurbs you want, but only one per name will be taken, and I will have to stop the blurbs after a reasonable number since I have reserved up to two pages for them.
    • Your blurb(s) will be in the first front pages of the book, visible (and searchable) on Amazon.
    • Your blurb will also be in the description section of the book listing, available to all book distributors and book sellers.
  • The deadline for blurb submission is December 1st, possibly sooner.
  • Pocket Parallel Mind will be going to print in December and will be available for sale through this site and in major bookstores, as well as on Kindle at that time. Free books will no longer be available after the holidays this year.
  • Please go wild with these!
  • I will give you an ebook now so you can read it, and blurb on it.
  • Email me at: parallelmindbook [at]   gmail   [dot] com
  • You will be signed up to this blog/newsletter automatically so that you can receive the announcement about the final downloadable copy of the book.

Anyone who is subscribed to this blog will get an offer in their email for a free ebook, as I promised earlier. Just subscribe to this blog/newsletter (button at top right) if you haven’t already subscribed.


Here is the text from the dedication page:


This book is for those who are blessed or cursed with the gift of creative intelligence. Those whose right-brains keep them up at night with brilliant concepts; those who question everything; those who don’t respect authority; those who were never understood by their peers, parents or teachers; those who were the class clowns.

You know who you are. You never fit in, were never voted to be famous, and were not popular among your classmates at school. Your parents despaired that you might end up in the gutter, because you wanted to be an artist.

You were one of the motley misfits who sat at the back of the room reading science fiction, the art-geek who drew cartoon characters in math class, the budding scientist who experimented with potentially incendiary ingredients from your mother’s kitchen in the bathroom, the fledging drummer who just couldn’t sit still in grade school. You were the one couldn’t figure out why everyone else wanted to lead a normal life.

A Story of Love, Faith, and Healing

One of the most enjoyable things about having your own blog is that you get to post whatever you want. This story really touched me, so I thought I’d share it with you.

Freedom and I have been together 10 years this summer.

She came in as a baby in 1998 with two broken wings. Her left wing doesn’t open all the way even after surgery, it was broken in 4 places. She’s my baby. When Freedom came in she could not stand and both wings were broken.

She was emaciated and covered in lice. We made the decision to give her a chance at life, so I took her to the vets office. From then on, I was always around her. We had her in a huge dog carrier with the top off, and it was loaded up with shredded newspaper for her to lay in.

I used to sit and talk to her, urging her to live, to fight; and she would lay there looking at me with those big brown eyes. We also had to tube feed her for weeks.

This went on for 4-6 weeks, and by then she still couldn’t stand. It got to the point where the decision was made to euthanize her if she couldn’t stand in a week. You know you don’t want to cross that line between torture and rehab, and it looked like death was winning. She was going to be put down that Friday, and I was supposed to come in on that Thursday afternoon.

I didn’t want to go to the center that Thursday, because I couldn’t bear the thought of her being euthanized; but I went anyway, and when I walked in everyone was grinning from ear to ear. I went immediately back to her cage; and there she was, standing on her own, a big beautiful eagle. She was ready to live. I was just about in tears by then. That was a very good day.

We knew she could never fly, so the director asked me to glove train her. I got her used to the glove, and then to jesses, and we started doing education programs for schools in western Washington. We wound up in the newspapers, radio (believe it or not) and some TV. Miracle Pets even did a show about us.

In the spring of 2000, I was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma. I had stage 3, which is not good (one major organ plus everywhere), so I wound up doing 8 months of chemo. Lost the hair – the whole bit. I missed a lot of work. When I felt good enough, I would go to Sarvey; and take Freedom out for walks. Freedom would also come to me in my dreams and help me fight the cancer. This happened time and time again.

Fast forward to November 2000, the day after Thanksgiving. I went in for my last checkup. I was told that if the cancer was not all gone after 8 rounds of chemo, then my last option was a stem cell transplant. Anyway, they did the tests; and I had to come back Monday for the results. I went in Monday, and I was told that all the cancer was gone.

So the first thing I did was get up to Sarvey and take the big girl out for a walk. It was misty and cold. I went to her flight and jessed her up, and we went out front to the top of the hill. I hadn’t said a word to Freedom, but somehow she knew. She looked at me and wrapped both her wings around me to where I could feel them pressing in on my back (I was engulfed in eagle wings), and she touched my nose with her beak and stared into my eyes, and we just stood there like that for I don’t know how long. That was a magic moment. We have been soul mates ever since she came in. This is a very special bird.

I never forget the honor I have of being so close to such a magnificent spirit as

Hope you enjoy this.

Here are more photos of Jeff and Freedom.

Do You Have a Creative Event? Post it on Parallel Mind.

I will post selected announcements such as workshops, exhibitions, events, etc. related to creative development. Simply leave your entry as a comment on one of my posts; if I deem it to be of interest to my readers, I will post it. Photos may be requested from you via my email response, so be ready to supply any visuals that may help clarify your announcement.

Please read this blog a bit first to see if your announcement will fit the genre of creativity, art, and personal development.

Review of Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity

New review of Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity in the October issue of Light Connection Magazine. Below is an excerpt:

In Parallel Mind, [Aliyah Marr] poses a lot of thought-provoking questions to move us forward in the art of creative living…

‘An artist is not defined by his work,” she observes, “but by the power of his creative thought.’ Then she tells us, ‘Art is about change, exploration, and about the courage to know yourself.’ (Ah, we know there was a catch!) Art is about passion! (Sounds kinda fun, no?)

The genius of Parallel Mind is that it engages us to explore our own potential and opens us up in a variety of provocative ways to consider how we want to express it. This s enlightened reading, every page packed with new ways of looking at the clay God gave us to work with.


Free Gift for Subscribers of Parallel Mind

Christmas Present by Petr Kratochvil

I’d like to offer the subscribers of this blog a free gift or two in time for the holidays. The first gift will be available by November 1st of this year, and I’d like to give a lot of gifts away, so please encourage your friends, associates and family to subscribe to this blog/newsletter before November (click on button in upper right column).

You may have wondered what has happened to Parallel Mind this year. Up until February, I posted on Parallel Mind regularly — once or twice a week, readers of this blog got an issue about creativity and personal development in their email or RSS reader.

Last February, I suddenly had an awesome creative inspiration: in the same flash I saw the title of a whole new book series, and the covers of all the books. Creative inspiration is like that sometimes. It happens in the weirdest places; this time it happened as I was riding my bike along the ocean. I had to stop to write down the titles and draw the covers.

Fast forward to October. It’s been a weird year, with a lot of false starts and stops and circling around again. From what I hear it’s been that way for a lot of people. But through all the changes I know that I will produce these books. I know, too, that they will be fun and practical as well.

For those of you who have bought my first book, Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity, and liked it, you will find much new material in this new series that you can instantly use. I can’t tell you how excited I am about writing them; I plan on sharing much of the material with my subscribers as I write these books, just as I did with my first book.


It will take me a while to write these books, so I’d like to reward those who have followed this blog with a free gift or two. In turn, you may personalize the gift I give to you and give it to anyone you want, or keep it for yourself. I will be providing this gift through email to my subscriber list as a special offer. This offer will be available only to subscribers and will be ready in time for the holidays.

I am having almost as much fun planning what I am giving away as I will have creating it, and giving it away. I’m like a kid when it comes to creating something new. My mother, an art teacher herself, taught us children to make gifts for the holidays, so, even today I find it is so much more fun to make gifts than to buy them. And, of course, if you are a creative person yourself, you know that it is an absolute joy for me to share what I create with as many people as possible.

My request to you is that if you know of anyone who would enjoy what I write, to encourage them to subscribe to this blog so that they too can receive my gift(s). While there are no limits to how many of these gifts I can give out, I would like to reach as many people as possible.

My plan is to continue to give out more special offers and special product pricing for  subscribers. As I expand the offerings, I’d like for as many people as possible benefit from what I will post here.

Please share this link or newsletter with your friends, business associates, partners, family; anyone you think might benefit from more creative inspiration in their lives.

Design Your Own Website Workshop With Social Media

10am-2pm, OCTOBER 17th
A Word With You Press, Oceanside, CA

You don’t have to know any HTML, Flash or even hire a web designer to have your very own website. You don’t need software or know Photoshop. You don’t even have to pay for hosting! In this four hour workshop you will find out how you can use one of the most popular FREE platforms today to create a website.

You will learn best practices for the web, how to register a domain name, how to host your site for free, how to choose and customize the design, how to add widgets, how to make your website work with social media, and how to update the content on your site.

At the end of this workshop you will have a fully functional website live on the web, complete with graphics, menus and pages, and a blog. Bring the following materials to class: content for the first few pages – an “about” page, main page, and any other pages that you have planned. Refreshments provided by A Word With You Press.

10am-2pm, OCTOBER 17th
A Word With You Press, 802 S. Tremont, Oceanside.

Aliyah Marr is a creative director in San Diego, who specializes in helping launch and market small businesses. She is the owner of FreshAsylum, a design consultancy. She was senior art director for one of the top online advertising firms in New York City during the dot-com bubble and burst. She taught graphic design and web design at design schools, Parsons, Pratt and at the School of Visual Arts. As a writer she has written for Business Week, Create Magazine, and has produced over 100 video tutorials on web design for

$50/4 hrs

Contact A Word With You Press at:

My Secret Life In Video

In my *other* life, I am a graphic designer, and have produced more pages of websites, movies, print pieces than I like to admit. I confess that design, for me, has become almost a bad habit: I’ve repeatedly tried to give it up but I think I’ve failed.

I remember, as a child, being obsessed with grouping and fitting things inside other things. I wondered at the time how such an ability might be useful. It wasn’t until much later that I discovered that visual organization and grouping is one of the primary ways that designers process information and achieve communication.

I teach design to web designers through MediaBistro’s online learning division, and have now produced 108 e-learning videos for them. I just posted an article on my design blog FreshAsylum about this work; in it I outline my process and some of the rewards of being an instructor of design.

I am proud of the post’s title, Less is More, Even More Than the Sum of Its Parts; it’s an inside joke for designers and artists; a very oblique reference to the tutorials on Bauhaus and Gestalt featured there. I’ve cobbled two of the most popular adages from both disciplines into one arranged marriage. It may be that only art educators will like it, or perhaps only my favorite art teacher, Roy Behrens, who I hope will give me an Apple for my cleverness (or at least check my spelling).

The funny thing about being a designer is that it has made me a better artist; just as being an artist made me able to become a better designer. I just have to learn to hold my tongue now when I see a badly designed website these days. I have to be serious if I am ever going to break my habit.

Architecture for Humans

Here is a book that just came to my attention, A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander. Since my first introduction to architecture and human design in art school, building buildings to reflect a healthy lifestyle has been one of my core interests. Why not use our creativity to design buildings that enhance our energy and make our lives better?

Here is a reader review:

it isn’t about architecture, April 29, 2000
By Philip Greenspun (Cambridge, MA USA) – See all my reviews
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction (Center for Environmental Structure Series) (Hardcover)
Nominally about architecture and urban planning, this book has more wisdom about psychology, anthropology, and sociology than any other that I’ve read. Nearly every one of this volume’s 1170 pages will make you question an assumption that you probably didn’t realize you were making. In a section entitled “Four-Story Limit”, Alexander notes that “there is abundant evidence to show that high buildings make people crazy…”

… Many of Alexander’s arguments are against the scale of modern systems. Public schools spend a fortune on building and administration precisely because they are so physically large [I’ve seen statistics showing that our cities spend only about one-third of their budgets on classrooms and teachers]. If we had shopfront schools and fired all the school system personnel who don’t teach, we might be able to get student-teacher ratios down to 8 or 10:1 without an increase in cost. Similarly, Alexander argues for smaller retail shops, smaller factories (or at least identifiable small workgroups within factories rather than hundreds of faceless cogs) and more master/apprentice instruction.

What if you like the depredations of modernity and aren’t interested in a utopian world where basic human needs are met? Can you learn anything about architecture from this guy? Absolutely. You’ll learn that light is everything. Your bedroom has to have eastern light so that the sun wakes you up. Your best living quarters should have southern light. All the rooms should have light from at least two sides, otherwise there will be too much contrast and you’ll just have to draw the shades. If you’ve got kids, make them sleep and play in their own wing of the house. Build a realm for yourself and your wife on a different floor. Meet the kids in the kitchen.

To avoid cluttering my apartment, I give away virtually all the books that I buy these days. I’m keeping this one and plan to re-read it every year.

Inspiration Found in Lyrics

How many times have you been inspired by lyrics? I have been working non-stop for four days now, and am exhausted. Paul Simon, Born At The Right Time, comes on my internet radio,

Never been lonely
Never been lied to
Never had to scuffle in fear
Nothing denied to

The lyrics remind me that no matter how difficult life may be, we should approach the world as if we are just born.

This is the way of the artist, to be as if just born, to be what we are, no expectations and no fear. A blank canvas. We are all “born at the right time” if we have the courage to be what we are.


Paul Simon, Born At The Right Time

Down among the reeds and rushes
A baby boy was found
His eyes as clear as centuries
His silky hair was brown

Never been lonely
Never been lied to
Never had to scuffle in fear
Nothing denied to
Born at the instant
The church bells chime
And the whole world whispering
Born at the right time

Me and my buddies we are travelling people
We like to go down to restaurant row
Spend those euro-dollars
All the way from washington to tokyo
I see them in the airport lounge
Upon their mother’s breast
They follow me with open eyes
Their uninvited guest

Never been lonely
Never been lied to
Never had to scuffle in fear
Nothing denied to
Born at the instant
The church bells chime
And the whole world whispering
Born at the right time

Too many people on the bus from the airport
Too many holes in the crust of the earth
The planet groans
Every time it registers another birth

But among the reeds and rushes
A baby girl was found
Her eyes as clear as centuries
Her silky hair was brown

Never been lonely
Never been lied to
Never had to scuffle in fear
Nothing denied to
Born at the instant
The church bells chime
And the whole world whispering
Born at the right time

Surfing The Sea of Change

Saxon Heller at Mavericks © Shalom Jacobovitz

I think that many of us are experiencing a lot of changes right now.

Change is uncomfortable, but it becomes easier if we relax. My good friend Dan tells me that the secret of surfing is to relax, and so the same is true about change. Relax, enjoy the ride, and be OK with not knowing. Not knowing where you are going, the outcome of your journey, or most especially “why.”

The two most useless words to ask at the juncture of change are the words “why” and “how.” Why me? Why does it have to happen this way? How am I going to cope? How will our family survive? How will I find a new job?

The best question to ask is “what do I desire?” Then pay attention to that little internal voice of intuition that tells you when and where you can place yourself to be closer to where that desire can easily manifest.

An artist specializes not so much in generating art as he specializes in generating desire. The secret is not trying to create what you desire; instead, you merely need to focus on the desire itself. What you desire is then pulled magnetically towards you by the energy (e-motion) of your desire.

Relaxing and accepting change is key to finding a sense of ease and enjoyment no matter where you are in life. Opposing change is like fighting the ocean — it’s pointless and it’s exhausting. Accepting change means that you can surf  the greatest wave of change effortlessly, using the power of the wave to carry you along, and enjoy the sometimes scary, sometimes exhilarating ride.

Copyright 2010 Aliyah Marr

Words of Wisdom & Humor

In ancient Greece (469 – 399 BC), Socrates was widely lauded for his wisdom.

One day an acquaintance ran up to him excitedly and said, “Socrates, do you know what I just heard about Diogenes?”

“Wait a moment,” Socrates replied, “Before you tell me I’d like you to pass a test. It’s called the Triple Filter Test.” ‘Triple filter?” asked the acquaintance.

“That’s right,” Socrates continued, “Before you talk to me about Diogenes let’s take a moment to filter what you’re going to say. The first filter is Truth. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?”

“No,” the man said, “Actually I just heard about it.”

“All right,” said Socrates, “So you don’t really know if it’s true or not. Now let’s try the second filter, the filter of Goodness. Is what you are about to tell me about Diogenes something good?”

“No, on the contrary…”

“So,” Socrates continued, “You want to tell me something about Diogenes that may be bad, even though you’re not certain it’s true?”

The man shrugged, a little embarrassed. Socrates continued, “You may still pass the test though, because there is a third filter, the filter of Usefulness. Is what you want to tell me about Diogenes going to be useful to me?”

“No, not really.”

“Well,” concluded Socrates, “If what you want to tell me is neither true nor good nor even useful, why tell it to me or anyone at all?”

The man was bewildered and ashamed. This is an example of why Socrates was a great philosopher and held in such high esteem.

(It also explains why Socrates never found out that Diogenes was messing around with his wife.)

Sealife Stories, The Illusion of Boundaries

Recently, I had the honor to meet J.E. Bannerman, who expresses poignant love and sorrow for her native home, the Gulf of Mexico, in her blog,,

“Nobody tells you this, but it is true: There is absolutely no place where the earth ends and the sea begins. There are no two things. To you it may seem that here there is this solid earth and there is that insubstantial liquidity called water. But the boundary is an illusion, and even the seashore of illusion is always changing. What happens here, will touch everything that is there. And what is there, far away, will someday be here, close up. Look up into the sky and breathe in the breath of all the waters of all the oceans on this little planet. By your breathing, you enter into the rhythm of tides and mists, into the world of delicate sea birds plunging into water, into the minds of prehistoric turtles lumbering back from a night beach, letting go of their feets’ need to touch bottom. . . . ”

Read more at:

I encourage you to sign up for her postings via email.

Aliyah Marr to Give Keynote Address for Conscious Living Chamber of Commerce May 8th 2010


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Aliyah Marr will give the keynote address for the Conscious Living Chamber of Commerce in Irvine, California today on May 8th, 2010.

Topic: “Trickle-up Economics: Growing the Creative Conscious Community”

Conscious Living Business Mixer

The Conscious Living Chamber of Commerce

This event will be hosted by: Brant & Andra Burnett
The event will start on: May 08 2010 1:00 pm
and will end on: May 08 2010 6:00 pm
The event will be at the Temple of Light Spiritual Community

Expand and Promote Your Business

Please come and join us for The Conscious Living Chamber of Commerce very first Conscious Living Business Mixer.

Featuring Special Guest Speaker:

Aliyah Marr – author of:

Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity

Please visit her website:

We Have Door Prizes Valued at Over $100.00 Each
Given Away Every Half Hour!

Come Mix, Mingle and Promote Yourself…….
You Might Win a Great Prize!

Participant Fee:

RSVP Participant Fee is only $5.00 -Includes 5 free tickets for door prizes when
you RSVP before May 7, 2010 ($8.00 at the door, plus
$1.00 per optional door prize ticket.)

Phone: (949) 340-7408  (949) 340-7408

The Temple of Light – Spiritual Wellness Center
23832 Rockfield Blvd, Suite 195
Lake Forest, CA 92630

We look forward to meeting you.
Aliyah Marr



Is This The Next Great American Novel?

My client, Thornton Sully (editor-in-chief of A Word With You Press) started his book tour with a party in San Diego on April 17th. I was honored to attend. I recommend that you listen to the reading of the first chapter of his book, The Boy with a Torn Hat. Tell me what you think… is this the next great American novel and is he the next great American novelist? Maybe you are. Well, you have a chance to prove it; check out his online contest, The Coffee Shop Chronicles.

Thornton’s work is amazing, but to hear it read aloud by the author himself … ahh! A good time was had by all, and Thornton sold a lot of books. See if you can host a book reading by this author. To see more go to:


Here is his announcement and a link to the reading.

Soon the author will be introducing The Boy at private parties between San Diego and Canada along the coast. We already have people excited to host parties at which they’ll invite their friends, and others who want to attend parties hosted by others.

Click here to watch video from our first reading!

The Unbearable Lightness of Creative Freedom

The creative attitude is one of limitless opportunity. Think of an open space, a clear horizon representing endless possibilities. A creative person is standing at the center of the universe, with infinite paths going in all directions; the unknown is exciting, and the path chosen is simply one of personal predilection.
— excerpt from Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity, by Aliyah Marr

© Aliyah Marr

Creativity in any form is married to the ability to make decisions and carry them out. As a creative person involved in a creative medium you make literally thousands of tiny decisions in every piece you create. The practice of art in any form is a great way to develop and refine your ability to make incisive decisions, which naturally leads to a more creative, and empowered life.

Think about the times when you felt creatively blocked — did it seem that you couldn’t make a decision or that there wern’t any good choices to make? Did it feel that you were trapped in indecision?

Now think about the times when you felt creatively empowered; did it feel as if you had incredible lightness and freedom?

When you make a decision to change your life, suddenly things that were formerly cloudy become crystal clear. You suddenly become prepared to do whatever it takes to achieve your purpose — your actions become aligned with the intent of your life’s purpose: you become what I call “ruthless;” you can make instant, unerringly right decisions based upon pure instinct and intuition. A movie editor is ruthless when he cuts out extraneous parts of the movie. Artists are ruthless when they can see a better solution in their mind’s eye, and instantly act to execute their inner vision.

Original mural image © Aliyah Marr

Recently, I made a ruthless decision: I edited a mural I had made some years previously, cutting out a full 1/3 of the picture. I knew that the painting would be better because I could “see” it first in my mind’s eye. I have probably made millions of similar sweeping decisions in my artistic life. When the decision is right, I feel it immediately; I see that the image is more powerful without the unnecessary clutter and parts that are extraneous to the integrity of the piece.

The practice of art gives me the ability to make good decisions in my life, guided by the intuition that comes directly from my heart. You can apply the rules of ruthless editing to everything that you want to create in your life:

1. decide to become ruthless and distill everything down to just the essentials.
2. focus on the freedom you will feel without unnecessary things weighing you down.
3. make sure your life and art have integrity and are aligned with your heart and your inner vision.
4. invest your energy just on doing what makes you happy, rather than in any future happiness or goal.

When your heart is unencumbered by the past, by unnecessary things, and by negative, disempowering emotions, you will find that it is the most amazing wise guide to your new life — let your heart speak and it will always tell you true. You no longer need any goal and you will no longer have to delay your happiness. Instead you will be living the life of your dreams, flying through a landscape of incredible beauty with the bird of creative freedom as your companion and guide.

Copyright 2010 Aliyah Marr

Slow Money Offers a Creative Solution to Social, Economic Problems


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We’ve all heard too much about the structural problems of our economy, and too little about a new vision, a fundamentally new vision of economic, social and environmental health. Slow Money envisions a way to transition from an economy based on extraction and consumption to an economy based on preservation and restoration… READ MORE

This year, Slow Money will host a second annual gathering June 9-11 in Vermont. They’ve confirmed an inspiring group of speakers, including Bill McKibben, founder of, Stonyfield Farm’s Gary Hirshberg, Robert Zevin, the ‘father’ of the socially responsible investment movement, and Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm, made famous by Michael Pollan’s Omnivore’s Dilemma and the film Food, Inc.

Readers of this blog can receive a 20% discount; enter code “aliyahmarr” to register for the gathering alone or ” aliyahmarr+dinner” if you would like to attend the Friday evening farm table dinner celebration. Register with this code through the following link:

Top 7 Things to Do When Your Creative Muse Leaves You


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Photo by watch4u (CC)

If you are an experienced creative, chances are that you have experienced a creative high and a corresponding creative low. The creative high can be so amazing that we often forget that a low almost always follows.

Just as the ocean has high and low tides, it’s only natural that the depths of the low creative period should balance the height of the preceding creative high period. The difficult thing to remember is that the high will come back, but for the time being it can seem that your muse has truly flown the coop.

What to do?

There are several courses of action:

  1. Take advantage of the time to do all those pesky errands that can’t get done when you are burning with creative fervor.
  2. Use the ebb to consolidate and build on ideas you have had in the past. Don’t just generate ideas, complete them!
  3. Get active, do something —anything. The crazier, the better!
  4. Learn something new.
  5. Listen to the world, instead of looking at it (if you are a visual artist).
  6. Look at the world, instead of listening to it (if you are a musician).
  7. Accept that you are in a creative ebb tide and find other things to do. Your creative nature will emerge in other exciting ways.

Above all, don’t worry. Accept that you are naturally creative being in a naturally creative universe. Just flow with it. Your fickle muse will almost always come back when she hears you laughing and having fun.

Copyright 2010 Aliyah Marr


New Classes in Social Media and Promotion


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It’s taken a couple months, but I’ve finally updated my website, There are still a few glitches, but finally I have a place where I can offer consulting, classes, and a range of creativity products.

In response to requests by my clients, I am giving classes and workshops on business tools and applications to make your creative promotion easier.


Master Social Media
Personalized one-on-one instruction helps you set up your social media campaign on Twitter, LinkedIn, & Facebook. We will cover as many programs as you can handle, so take notes!

Promotion Secrets for Authors & Publishers
Personalized one-on-one instruction helps you learn how to promote your book using free resources and applications online.


What is Creativity?


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“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” — Pablo Picasso

Forest Dreams © 2002 Aliyah Marr

What is your most heartfelt desire? Do you know that you have the power within you to grant any and all of your wishes? Humans are natural creators. It is our birthright to be the creative architects of our lives, not just a leaf in the wind, torn between our duties and our desires.

As humans, we are uniquely gifted magicians — we have the ability to create new things and even modify our environment. Creativity is our talent and our gift, our inheritance from an abundant universe.

Beyond the sense of personal power and control that comes with the practice of art, the fringe benefit is a life filled to the brim with riches. It is impossible to be bored when the world is a playground filled with toys and tools for you to play with and use. Everything is potentially interesting and useful; every event is a launching pad for a learning experience — a spark for a responsive, playful intellect.

Most of my lessons about how to live come from my practice as an artist. I have learned to apply the simplicity and directness of these ideas and found that they work to create whatever I want. I would like to share some of these tools I have discovered with you, so you will be inspired to seek and find your own tools to gain the life you desire.

— excerpt from Chapter One of the book Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity by Aliyah Marr (all rights reserved)

Copyright 2007-2008 Aliyah Marr

The Illusion of Enemies and Opposition


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Marvin Gaye in 1973

They say that those who don’t remember their history are bound to repeat it. Think of all the major enemies that this nation has had in the last 100 years that have turned into friends and partner, countries such as Japan, Germany and Russia.

Those who were alive during these various wars can remember how they felt about the enemy of the moment at that time. But if you make even the most cursory study of history you encounter many more examples of enemies turned friends. It makes you wonder.

Anyone who has studied history realizes that nearly every war was fought to gain territory or material goods for the very few at the top of the food chain, and that the ideological reasons were just a thin veneer to disguise the motivations of those who stood to benefit. It has been this way for the last 4000 or so years.

The people who fought and died in these wars often end up bitter and confused, they ask what did they fight that war for, after all?

There are a few things that come to my mind:

  • The memories of people are short.
  • People will easily replace one enemy for another, never realizing that they have just switched the masks of the opposition, not changed anything underneath, nor learned anything from the pain and suffering of war.
  • People are easily swayed by public opinion especially when influenced by people who know how to manipulate emotions that engage the ego.
  • There are no such things as enemies. A person on the path of individual enlightenment doesn’t have enemies, instead, he uses opposition to gain enlightenment. He uses his own thoughts as creative tools, rather than allow his thoughts to be dictated by others; he knows that when his ego is engaged through conflict he slips back into unconscious behavior. Instead of striving against an enemy or even against himself, he strives to notice his ego’s emotional engagement and use the situation to become more conscious.

So what could be the reason for opposition and enemies? I think that they are part of the creative process of the evolution of consciousness. Artists know that the presence of certain elements make better art: tension is one and contrast is another. What brings on more tension and contrast than war?

Has there ever been a time in your life when an enemy became a friend? Or perhaps you suddenly saw through your enemy to see their pain? At the base of most emotional dysfunction is a need to be accepted. Not loved, just accepted. A little acceptance and tolerance can go a long way.

Copyright 2010 Aliyah Marr


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