Listen to Your Ideas

If some grand idea bubbles up to the surface don’t dismiss it. Ruminate on the idea for a bit, and make sure that it is sound. If you have to play it over and over in your head until you can work out the minute details, do so. Sketch or type out the idea so that you can look at it to make sure what you envision still makes sense on paper.

Once you’re convinced that you have the greatest idea on earth, pitch it to someone that will help you confirm it. Continue to find more validators so that your idea grows into its own thing.

Your thoughts and ideas are just two things that make you unique. Share your uniqueness with others, but only when the time is right.

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Glen Scheffer, Carousel Music, 2007

Finding Inspiration

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Kevin Van Aelst, Apple Globe, 2007

Finding Inspiration when you think all the good ideas have already been taken.

I’m not sure what to write.
I’m not sure what to photograph.
I’ve been staring at a blank canvas all day.
I feel like I’m writing the same song over and over.

I’m not sure this applies to any of you reading this, but artists sometimes get themselves in a bit of a quandary––low and behold: Artist’s Block. You know, kinda like “writer’s block”, but on a more diversified scale. You, yes you, the artist over there that looks down in the dumps. You’re getting in your own way. You’ve set up roadblocks for yourself. You’ve convinced yourself that there is nothing original to be said––that it’s “all been done before.” Come on now, you’re an ARTIST!

With a show of hands, who hasn’t felt like this? If you find yourself in one of these predicaments, try to remember that “ah-hah” moment you had a few months or days back when you actually had a moment of brilliance––that time when things were clear and your artistic mojo was working for you. Recall that moment, harness it for half a minute, then get back to work. If that doesn’t help, go for a stroll to your nearest bookstore, gallery or museum. Breathe in the art. Let it consume every morsel of your being. Don’t you feel better already. Are you ready to create?

People who define themselves as “artists” have an innate ability that others do not have. Some think that you can learn to be an artist, but I believe you are born with with an artistic genome––schooling just helps you mold and fine tune what is already there.

Artists are gifted, talented and unique individuals. If we didn’t have them in this world, life would be pretty boring. Actually, someone smarter than me once said: “Earth without art would be Eh

All the inspiration that you need is already inside you. You just have to be determined enough to let it out.

What will 2014 bring?

jason landry, author, writer, collector“Opportunities will come at the unlikeliest of times. Sometimes they’re because of instant connections.” ~ Jason Landry


The biggest event for me in 2013 was getting my book published. I’m sure you probably figured that out by now. What will 2014 bring? I am not going to bore you with any New Year’s resolutions, rather, I’m going to tell you a few things that I will be doing for certain:

1.) I will be cooking more. Late in 2013, I got the cooking bug. I never really cooked much in our house. Either my wife cooked, or we’d go out. Okay, I would cook pasta once in a while––that’s not that hard. I’m also a master at making peanut butter & jelly sandwiches. What I’m talking about is cooking real meals, ya’ll––and desserts too! We just purchased a whole new set of pans and I’m ready to get my chef on! If any of you have any recipe suggestions or good mobile app suggestions to find the best recipes, let me know.

2.) I will be spending more of my time helping others make connections. This is one thing that I learned from the people who have mentored me. They gave me direction over the last couple of years and helped me create the network that I currently have. I wrote about these mentors in my book Instant Connections ––it’s now my turn to give back. It’s not like I haven’t given back. It’s just in 2014, I’m really going to give back. This is something that makes me feel good.

3.) I will begin to write a new book. I have a few ideas brewing, but nothing that I can share with you at this time.

I hope that you all have a great New Year.
Try new things.
Set some achievable goals.
Meet some new people.
Shake some hands.
Break some rules.
Read Books.
Give back.

That’s all.

Adding a few books to my shelf

So yes, we are now aware that GoodReads has been acquired by Amazon.  There seems to be mixed emotions about this throughout the social media circles that I’m in, and that’s normal when any change happens.  It’s a great website, and if you’re into books, then check it out.  In fact, check out my GoodReads page (see link at the bottom of this post).

I’ve been on a memoir quest this year, both writing one and reading many.  Actually, I have another memoir idea that I’m trying to formulate now concerning my paternal grandfather.  Born a twin on Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia, Canada, as a young boy he was shipped off to the United States to live with his aunt and uncle.  The specifics of why this happened are vague.  I plan to go to Nova Scotia this summer to research my heritage and hopefully learn a little more about my family and myself.

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Anyhow, I’ve been getting some nice support from friends and fellow artists about my writing process and suggestions on books to read.  These are the two newest additions to my list.  I will be reading Elsewhere by Richard Russo first, then will tackle The Shipping News by Annie Proulx next––two Pulitzer Prize winners that I probably wouldn’t have picked up on my own.

If anyone is curious what books I’ve been reading or what books are on my shelf, visit my GoodReads page (here).