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The Creativity Book: A Year's Worth of Inspiration and Guidance Paperback – June 19, 2000

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The Creativity Book: A Year's Worth of Inspiration and Guidance + Fearless Creating: A Step-by-Step Guide To Starting and Completing Your Work of Art + Coaching the Artist Within: Advice for Writers, Actors, Visual Artists, and Musicians from America's Foremost Creativity Coach
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Author of Affirmations for Artists, Fearless Creating, and Deep Writing, Eric Maisel, Ph.D., works exclusively with artists in his private psychotherapy practice and in group workshops. He lives near San Francisco.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Tarcher; First Edition edition (June 19, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1585420298
  • ISBN-13: 978-1585420292
  • Product Dimensions: 4.5 x 0.9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #750,249 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Eric Maisel, Ph.D., widely regarded as America's foremost creativity coach, is the author of more than 40 books. His titles include Secrets of a Creativity Coach, Why Smart People Hurt, Making Your Creative Mark, Coaching the Artist Within, The Van Gogh Blues, Fearless Creating, Mastering Creative Anxiety, Creativity for Life, A Writer's Paris, A Writer's San Francisco, and many others.

In addition to training creativity coaches, leading workshops nationally and internationally, and maintaining an individual creativity coaching practice, Dr. Maisel is in the forefront of the movement to rethink mental health. He writes the Rethinking Psychology blog for Psychology Today and among his books in this area are Rethinking Depression and Natural Psychology: the New Psychology of Meaning.

Dr. Maisel leads Deep Writing workshops at workshop centers like Esalen, Kripalu, Omega, Hollyhock and Rowe and in locales like San Francisco, New York, London, Paris, Prague and Rome. His books have been translated into more than a dozen languages, he has conducted hundreds of interviews, and his print column "Coaching the Artist Within" appears monthly in Professional Artist Magazine.

Dr. Maisel's websites are www.ericmaisel.com and www.naturalpsychology.net. He can be contacted at ericmaisel@hotmail.com.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

83 of 84 people found the following review helpful By M. Gondek VINE VOICE on October 28, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Maisel consistently challenges the artist to be true to his/her artistic self in all his books, and this is no exception. Unlike The Artist's Way (a fine book for the creatively blocked or undiscovered), The Creativity Book targets the artist who has achieved a higher degree of self-knowledge and acceptance. He asks the reader to choose a Dream early in the year, which will be accomplished as the year unfolds. Each week highlights an aspect of living as a creative being, and includes exercises to clear the way to living more fully. The exercises range from easy (have a morning and evening tea ritual for three days) to much harder (sit for 40 minutes and do NOTHING), but the difficulty will doubtless vary for each reader.
Maisel has a no-holds-barred style that doesn't permit excuses, whining, or hedging. His message is simple: one must actively pursue the muse at all times, and embrace her when she appears. You don't HAVE to do any of the exercises, although he'd like you to do them all. He makes it clear, however, that choosing not to do the exercises is also a clear statement of your degree of commitment to your Dream, which ultimately boils down to art.
If you're looking for coddling, this is the wrong book. But if you're ready to be gently but firmly led to create as you know you can "if only...", Maisel removes the "if only..." and leaves you with a fuller, more satisfying relationship with your artistic self.
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52 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Mary Bradley on August 17, 2000
Format: Paperback
This wonderful book came to me at a time when I was experiencing a painful and desperate disconnection from my work as a sculptor. I took the fast track with the book and read it in 4 days. My resistance, fear, uncertainty, grief,...etc. has miraculously resolved. I have begun a new and extremely satisfying body of work, and I'm filled with new creative energy in all aspects of my life. It was the right book at the right time for me. My hope is that it may that for you. I will always be grateful to Eric Maisel for writing this book!
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45 of 47 people found the following review helpful By H. Grove (errantdreams) TOP 500 REVIEWER on April 28, 2004
Format: Paperback
I'm quite fond of Eric Maisel's books. He's a psychotherapist and "creativity consultant," and he has written a number of books on writing, art, and creativity. Several of them are among my favorite writing books: "Living the Writer's Life," "Deep Writing," and "Write Mind." Unlike those books, "The Creativity Book" is not aimed specifically at writers. It's aimed at you, me, your brother, and the guy in the cubicle down the hall. In other words, anyone who'd like to use a little more creativity in their lives, whether for painting, writing, mathematics, relationships, or business plans.
The book is designed to be read one section at a time, to take you through a year of learning. It has 88 sections, two per week, to get you through ten months, and then the idea is that you spend the last two months of your year devoted to a particular creative project. Each base section is pretty short--generally a page or three--so you'll have no trouble reading it in a few spare minutes some evening. Then it's followed by at least one exercise, and sometimes several. Sometimes the exercises are very specific; at other times, Maisel suggests ways to apply the exercises to whatever area you're trying to become more creative in.
Many of the ideas in the book are relatively basic, but this in no way makes them useless. After all, they're only basic for people who are already highly creative and making abundant use of that creativity. In large part this book is designed to help those who aren't sure where to start when it comes to creativity, and who haven't had much luck sitting down and getting started with their creative projects. Even highly creative people will still find things of value in this book, however.
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By V. Marshall VINE VOICE on June 23, 2004
Format: Paperback
Eric Maisel has given us a nice book filled with inspiration and creative guidance.
This book is structured in 52 weekly segments starting with beginning work and ending up with a project that should be completed. Each short chapter contains a brief essay of guidance and then an inventive exercise to try on for size.
The author of this book, Eric Maisel, Ph.D., is a psychologist who teaches that the act of creating impacts all aspects of one's life. So this book is intended for everyone, not just those struggling to survive artistic blocks. Executives can develop new business ideas, cooks can create better dishes, lawyers can find new ways to argue, politicians can consider alternative ways to create democracy, children can become better students and so on. Overall an extremely good book for those willing to put forth a bit of effort towards creating new ideas.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By QuinnCreative VINE VOICE on March 15, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Eric Maisel is a prolific writer with a penchant for helping artists. And this book is no exception. For those who have read Cameron's "The Artist's Way," in the required number of weeks and wish there were other timed guides, Maisel's book is the answer. It's a year's worth of creative work, some gentle and imaginative, some kick-in-the-rear tough. I'll admit I read all the way through it, and I'll bet Maisel knew that most readers would. It's an interesting read that way, with Maisel's wry observations and self-deprecating humor serving as another level of inspiration. There is a lot hiding in this book, waiting to be discovered. The quotes in the scholar's margins create their own interesting commentary. Use this book to dip into when you are bored, stymied, frustrated, lonely or stuck. You won't come away feeling the same way. You might not want to do every exercise Maisel suggests, but imagining them might be enough to give you creative traction again.
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