Book Review and Double Giveaway Drawing: A First Time for Everything


This post – my first official book review and giveaway –  is both an indirect and direct result of the book pictured above: Inner Hero Creative Art Journal: Mixed Media Messages to Silence Your Inner Critic, the second book by certified creativity coach Quinn McDonald.

I’ll break it down:



I follow her blog, QuinnCreative  and appreciate her truthful, sometimes pointed, often profound writing.

I am a fan of Quinn’s first book, Raw Art Journaling: Making Meaning, Making Art, because of its freeing “Create Imperfectly” guidance.

I have personally worked with Quinn, an insightful, empathic creativity coach. She gives homework.  In one of our phone conversations I was grousing about the clay not letting me do what I was attempting, feeling both thwarted and flummoxed and in need of a different perspective. She kindly admonished me: “You go right back in your studio and apologize to that clay!” I did and it helped me move past my misunderstanding.  I still apologize whenever I recognize I am getting bossy with my materials.

I enjoy and admire Quinn and support all of her efforts: books, writing, workshops.  I look forward to whatever she will manifest next.



I am a proud Artist Contributor to the Inner Hero book, and that is why I have two copies to give away, Dear Readers. (Details at the end of the post.)

I worked from the advance description of the book’s scope in order to make and write about my artwork in the ways Quinn requested.  I needed to describe and name my Inner Critic (Scylla, a meanie of mythic proportions, but then aren’t they all?) I also needed to ID and write a description of an Inner Hero of mine. I chose The Synthesist, who I named Maya. With her help, I am able to combine disparate elements and forge anew.

My small part of this book was completed over a year ago, so as I read the finished work, I appreciate the depths to which Quinn takes her concepts.  We have many Inner Heroes, she explains, and we may call upon any and all of them, depending on the particular vulnerability our Inner Critic is harping on. Quinn spends several chapters – the heart of the book, really –   describing art-making and writing practices for creating “mixed media messages.” Make them utterly personal, she advises.

And, here’s the lasting genius: All does not end with those personalized exercises. Your art and writing create an interactive tarot deck of personal Inner Hero cards to consult.  Ignoring or abolishing our Inner Critic probably is not possible, so what about an ongoing a dialogue? Sometimes that Inner Critic is telling a truth we need to know,  but not in a way we can comfortably accept. The enjoyable methods the Inner Hero offers help us develop ways to interact and work with the darker side of our creative selves. As Quinn writes, “Your journal, writing, art, wisdom and creativity all come together.”

Perfect case in point: I consulted my Inner Hero Deck to write this blog post. I felt I needed to write perfectly  and that meant Scylla was entering in her finest Perfectionist Robes and Headdress. I grabbed my Inner Hero Scribe card.

We worked it out.

Here’s How to Enter the Inner Hero Giveaway Drawing: Leave a comment on this post by Tuesday March 25 saying you’d like to receive a copy of this book!  Feel free to say why as well. The next day, March 26, I will randomly pick two Commentors and announce it in the Comments as well.  I will include my email address and ask the winners to send me their snail mail address.  I will send the books  –  postage paid by me – as soon after that as I can.  Bon Chance, let the Good Comments Roll!

–Liz Crain, who believes it was Katharine Hepburn who said that if one did not engage with one’s fears  – often generated by that Inner Critic – one got soggy. Ew.


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21 thoughts on “Book Review and Double Giveaway Drawing: A First Time for Everything

  1. Okee Dokie, Here are the two winners of the drawing for the Inner Hero Book, selected by the Random Sequence generator thingie at

    Congratulations to:

    Karen B and Patricia Griffin!

    Email me your snail mail addresses at Or message me on Facebook. I will be sending them out as soon as I have them!

    And thanks to all of you!


  2. Is there still time to enter? I’d love a copy of the book. I enjoy a good read, especially about creativity.

    Congrats on being part of the book!

    1. Hi Fuzzy…yes I won’t do the random number generator thingie until tomorrow…Thanks for coming by and checking it all out!

  3. I would love a copy! It’s my birthday today… so perhaps that little fact will bring me luck! If you’re inspired by the book, it must be awesome – as you’re already such an inspirational ceramic artist!

    1. Patricia you are just SO sweet. Thank you! May The Birthday Luck Factor be with you!

  4. Hi Liz- I would love to win a copy. It sounds like a great read and I have a very bossy inner critic so if I could learn about a less perfectionist inner critic that would be great 🙂


    1. Vivien, I hear you about that bossy inner critic. SUCH a force of nature, without tools to harness it. Best of luck in the drawing.

  5. I want to stretch my itsy bitsy imagination…I want to create and re-create me freely…I want to stretch my creative realm of possibilities…I want to relax with a good book! Let’s see – what card would I grab right now? I think it’s still the 2 headed monster – the one that’s thinking about all the ‘problems’ and the one that wants to be free! Thanks for posting Liz – nice to hear about your work and you!

    1. Hey Bonnie, that two-headed monster is an interesting one. Might be just the way in to it all, providing it can be ridden!

  6. Liz~ It would be awesome to win a copy of this book. I am interested in your contribution to it. Having been inspired by you Liz, it would be great to see some of what you do to be uplifted. I am checking out QuinnCreative. Thanks for all you do Liz!

    1. LInda, I so love and appreciate your enthusiasm and support. Wind in my sails. Hope you like Quinn’s stuff. She’s an original voice and quite the writer. (Hence my Perfectionist Inner Critic showing up when I needed to write about not only her, but her book!)

  7. I’m in!

  8. I’d love a copy. I’m so inspired by your “spectabulous” creativity and the tradition/legacy you continue from a woman who influenced us both deeply. It is always a pleasure to know an artist who is gifted with grace as well as talent. 🙂

    1. Thank you Karen. Legacies and learning always count, but I think it helps to notice and share. I love the Ceramics Tribe; we take care of each other!

  9. i want a copy of this book badly. I follow Quinn as well and love her ability to pin point issues that I have been having. So good to hear I am not alone on this journey!

    1. Hi Jody! Between Quinn and you and I, we can DO this! We are not alone. What I especially enjoy about Quinn is her willingness to talk about her failings and hesitancies as much as her successes and considerable knowledge. A true Wise Woman!

  10. Enjoyed your post! Thanks!

    1. Hi Debi. Hope you find Quinn out there on the internets and continue enjoying her. Thanks for stopping by! Bon Chance!

  11. I WANT A COPY!! I am also a ceramic artist with my own daily struggles in the studio. Based on your summaries, I think that it would be incredibly helpful..not only in the clay studio, but also in my own endeavor in writing a book. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PICK ME!!!! 😀


    1. Hi Shawna,
      Thanks for your enthusiasm! I appreciate your understanding that the creative process with its critics and heroes is in all things: clay, writing, art-making…but it is there for gardening and cooking and parenting as well. Good luck in the random drawing, dear!

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