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Art to Wear

When I was in my teens, I loved going into museums, fascinated by the art exhibited there.  Once when I was sixteen our class took a several day’s long trip to Dresden (Germany) and there we visited the Gallery of the Old Masters. I was awed as we walked along the rows and rows of paintings and sculptures. More so because I knew I would never be able to do anything alike. Truly, give me a pencil and paper and the best you get is a squiggly line or some stick figure. To me the connection from my head, where beautiful pictures house, to my hand, is screwed up.

The one thing I believe about art is, that it is inside of you, like a force that motivates and drives you. That no matter what path you choose in your life, the need to create will find a way to be expressed, to show that passion, drive and need that’s inside an artist.

I know this sounds feministic and condescending, but I think women in general will understand my meaning better when I say women know how it feels to create something from nothing.  Creation is in a woman’s genes. Yes, it’s not exactly the same, but just like with a child that was created inside our body, the art someone creates is loved once it is finished and ready to be shown to the world. And just like a child, someone else might not like it, find it too squishy, ugly, or too loud. The difference is you would never tell those things to a mother, but you most likely will to an artist.

Child birth has a time limit for it’s creation, art however has not. Some people will discover their artistic outlet in a young age, like Mozart did. Others might be well into their 70s or 80s when they do, or realize that they have done art in one form or another for years.

In a way, I was always creative. As a little kid, I loved to spin tales to get out of trouble. Yes, it’s called lying, but I prefer to think of it as story telling. When my mother opened a small, home based print business I fell in love with Corel Draw and it’s clip arts, brushes and all the little gizmos. When I got my first camera I was fascinated by taking pictures, but not very good at it and it quickly got expensive. That was before digital cameras were on the market. Then later in life when I was in my twenties I began to write, despite my dyslexia. I think it was kind of a rebellious way of expressing myself, but at the same time I found joy and comfort in it, happiness even. I even did my own cover designs. Yet, I never thought of myself as an artist of any kind. I considered myself a writer and designer, but not an artist. Art is what you find in museums and galleries. Right?

Wrong! Art is everywhere and in every act of creation. When I was a cook I was an artist in the way of creating recipes, and using them to feed people. As a writer, I create worlds with words, bring joy, laughter, and pain to my readers. As a designer, I bring the ideas and concepts of others to life. As a photographer, I capture the beauty that nature paints. And I have gotten better in that department as well. In any case, art in general is filled with variations and ways of expression, of creating something. That has always been the way of art. What has changed over the centuries is how we distribute and access it.

As I said in the beginning I got my first real impression of the magnitude of art when going to the gallery of the Old Masters. Sure, I was replicas of famous art on someone’s wall, in shelves, and some people that had enough money even had originals. However, for a long-time art as in paintings, photographs and drawings, was often expensive and if you wanted something special and original, hard to find.

Today with modern technology, internet, and public domain picture collection (regard the copyright) art has not only reached a new level of opportunity, but has become easier to access and distribute. Where twenty years ago, you would have gone from one gallery to another to maybe get one piece of art exhibited, you now upload it to an art portal, or print on demand service and sell it directly. Mind you, I only discovered recently, as in two or three years ago, and it’s an ongoing process, how to utilize my artistic talents.

When my Fibromyalgia forced me to stop working as a cook, my dyslexia prevented me from taking an office job and my anxiety blocked me from doing something in customer service, I took to writing once more. First to give me something to do, then to share my stories and finally to make money with it without investing a fortune. That brought me to book cover design and from there it was a small step to creating something new and different all together.

Only when I started with digital art I wasn’t sure what to do with the finished picture/design. Remember the art gallery and museum. Most artist I think dream of at one time being exhibited in a museum. However, in my experience it’s most often the dead that get there and I don’t intent on joining their ranks any time soon. So, I no longer care about museums.

And art galleries are kind of a one-time deal. You put one picture, painting, or photograph up for sale and that’s it. Once it’s gone only one person has it. Yet I wanted to share my creations with many, and sell it more than once. It’s the business woman in me that wants to make money repeatedly.

That’s how I found Art to Wear. Yep, finally I’m coming to the point.

At first, I stumbled over Zazzle, which is a nice enough portal for distributing art, don’t get me wrong it has its benefits. However, it lacks in the graphic T department. Graphic tees are a wonderful way to share and sell art. For which I can recommend Redbubble, they have a great selection on graphic tees and a super easy platform to upload and present your work.

I guess art to wear is a very limited description, it’s more like, Art to put on everything that can be printed on. From normal shirts and graphic tees to lap top skin, mugs, and notebooks. Hell, even duvet covers and fleece blankets. Where thirty years ago, (god I’m getting old) I would have sworn to you that I’ll never be able to create anything artistic, I now offer my art on several portals for you to buy. The best is, thanks to modern technology the things I create are actually worth looking at. Sure, I still don’t use a pencil and paper, but who the hell cares? I now do anything from greeting cards you won’t find in a store, to duvet covers I would have loved to have growing up or even now. Anyone who ever wanted a piece of art on their wall, or body, can with the click of a button and a credit card.

So why not check it out? Not just my art but what those portals can do for your inner artist as well. Take a look at my website, Zazzle store and Redbubble store and the many different designs.


Introducing Peachy the happy peach.

Peachy was originally created for a crowd-sourcing competition, with a totally different context. The little guy didn’t have a face, arms, or legs at that point, just his funny hair and a tie. Still, when I looked at it I smiled and fell in love with the little feller. Once the competition was finished and lost I stared at the little guy and didn’t want to let him go.

I assume all of you know the phrase “everything is peachy”, even if it is an older saying. That phrase simply didn’t want to go out of my head. So, I did the worst thing imaginable… I started to think.

Peaches, they are soft, fruity and juicy with a thick skin and hard, strong, unwavering core. They are full of vitamins and when you look at them they have rosy cheeks like a healthy person should have. Peaches represent health, and strong, withstanding characteristics.

With those thoughts in mind, my little peach became a meaning, a soul so to speak. Then it became arms, legs, pants, and expressions. Most importantly it became a mission.

Peachy the happy peach is born and destined to spread happiness, give strength, support and let you know you matter. Peachy is immortal (no age), ASO (All Sexual Orientations or none), All or no religions, disabled or healthy, to save some time and put it simple, Peachy is everything he needs to be, filled with nothing but love and acceptance. He will stand beside and behind you, support you and hold on to you. Peachy stands for all things that are good and never discriminates. With him, everything is peachy….

Fan Article and more

As an author, I want to offer my readers as much as I can, including merchandise that goes along with my books. As a photographer and designer, I want to share what I create with as many people as possible. However, as a human being, with human being needs, I also need to make money to live from. So if you want to support me, or simply because you love my designs, go and take a look at my shop at Zazzle and order something. A mug, or a mousepad, a pillow or a poster print of one of my photos.


View more gifts at Zazzle.

The thoughts behind The Diaries of Kairie Lawless

The Diaries of Kairie Lawless are the expression of my fears if Donald Trump becomes elected President of the United States. Mothe diaries of Kiarie Lawless 5 front smallst of it is and exaggeration, fears taken to an extreme, yet still they are fears and I have a reason to have them. A reason I would like to explain, and maybe some will see that my fantasy isn’t an impossibility.

Like my main character Kairie I grew up with an agnostic mind set. I don’t claim a religion of my own, but belief that there is more then what we can see or explain with science. I accept and tolerate anyone’s believes, life style, sexual orientation or handicap without judging them by it. I judge people by their actions and how they interact with me. Acceptance and tolerance by the way, is not the same as liking and understanding it, but that’s just something to throw out there. In any case, since I grew up in Germany and my grandparents where born and raised during Hitler’s reign, I also know a little about how people felt back them. In addition to what you learn in school and through being interested in history. And as much as I hate to compare a modern man with Hitler, I can’t help but see the similarities in this year’s elections.

When Hitler came into the picture in Germany, the country was devastated after WW1, the victors had all the power and the Germans felt like they had nothing. Well, in many ways they didn’t, but that’s no reason to start another war. However, the Germans were scared of the often violent actions of the victors, they were starving, had not right of weapons and thought themselves defenceless, morals were down, crime rates and unemployment rates were up. It was the perfect breeding ground for hatred, because it was already there, already smoldering in the ruins of a country, it just needed some fuel.

America is scared of religious extremist’s terror attacks, and with god reason. The never ending flood of immigrants and refugees has impacted economics, crime, unemployment and much more and made the country a not so great place. People are sick and tired of paying taxes to support a corrupt and already overplayed government. They feel threatened by the rising crime rates and feel they need a weapon to protect themselves and when the government talks about restricting those weapons, fear rises. The older generations fear the rapid and to them radical changes in society, especially in regard to the LGBTQ movement. It’s the perfect breeding ground for hatred, all it needs is fuel. Then Donald Trump comes along.

In Germany Hitler boldly pointed out the problems of the country and addressed the fears, promising them to fix them, to make Germany Great Again. He promised to replace the corrupt government, to take back their right to take up arms, to increase the police and military force to protect folk and country from criminals and outside threats. He vowed to lower unemployment rates by creating jobs, and stabilize economics.

I hear Donald Trump making the same promises, taking up the same vows and use the same double meaning language as Hitler has. The only difference is Hitler blamed most of the problems on the Jew’s residing in Germany. He had only singled out one group, or has he? Sadly no, it’s a misconception to say it was only the Jew’s. It was mostly the Jew’s, yes, but there were disabled people, mentally challenged ones, gays, and many others that didn’t fit the picture of a perfect German in Hitler’s mind.

Now, Donald Trump is not Hitler and I don’t belief he ever will be. Donald Trump is not a raging lunatic with a God complex. I actually think Donald Trump is a very intelligent and cunning man. I truly think / fear he will make good on his promises if he is elected. The thing is, so did Hitler before he turned it all into something else.

Yet, like with the President in my book, I don’t think that Donald Trump would go and open up camps to extinguish those he considers less valuable citizens. After all he is a business man. It’s bad business to kill cheap labour forces.

I believe that he will make America Great again, just not the way most think. Neither he nor Hillary Clinton have been convicted of a crime, but both have been accused of many.  Do I think Hillary Clinton is a better choice? NO! Which is the true problem. To me the American People are screwed one way or the other. Hillary will run America into the ground and it might never get up again. Trump will get power hungry and turn the things that made America Great again, against those Americans he doesn’t consider worthy to be American.

Based on those observations, believes and similarities I built my dystopian world, led by Lando Rud. I just hope I’m wrong.

 

The Diaries of Kairie Lawless

What happens when Donald #Trump wins the election? It’s a question many ask themselves or others, and personally I believe that if he wins, he will bring forth nothing good. The man is power hungry in my opinion, and his morals and ethics more than just doubtful. However, if he wins or not, this election period with him as candidate brought forth the darkness in many people. He fueled the hate and bigotry, furthered prejudice and supported diversity. He made promises that can be taken two ways. Saying things like he is building a wall, to protect. But a wall can also be used as a jail. That criminal elements have to be removed, subdued, and deported. But what if those criminals are citizens? What if he starts deciding what is a crime?

84 years ago another man said similar things and led Germany down a path that ended in millions of death and the #holocaust. Yet I don’t believe that Donald Trump is the same kind of man as Adolf #Hitler was, he is a different kind of evil, but evil none the less.

The Diaries of Kairie Lawless is a dark story of what I believe this man is capable of and what might happen to America in a worst case scenario. It’s #dystopian, because one man’s #Utopia might be hell for a whole nation, minus a few fanatics. There is #romance, because love will life on even in a world of darkness. Yet, Kairie isn’t a character to be loved, or pitied. The Diaries of Kairie Lawless tell the story of a girl that was forced to be someone she wasn’t. That was thrown into a world of pain and suffering, ripped from the life she knew, and tossed into hell. What came out was a fighter, driven by revenge. Willing to use any and all means to bring back #freedom.

Find out what I think might be in the cards if the elections end with Trump winning. The story is pure fiction of course, and only inspired by the #elections2016. Pre-order The Diaries of Kairie Lawless now https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JTOAC6E

Promotion, part 1

I have been thinking about doing a whole series about book/brand promotion for some time but only get around to it now.

No matter if it is a big company operating worldwide or a one-person indie publisher, promotion is the most important part of any brand and product. The only difference is the budget. Where a big company like Penguin Publishing can invest millions into promoting a new book or author, you a single income indie publisher with your first book might have ten bucks. Which is why I will start out with things you can do on your own and without investing anything or not much.

The first promotion tool I want to talk about is social media, which can give you lots and lots of exposure but is time-consuming.

We live in a world connected by social media, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Pinterest, LinkedIn, or Myspace and much more. Each platform has their own target group, their own way of spreading the word. I’m doing this for two years now and still haven’t figured it all out. So if you just started and your eyes are crossing while looking at the options, don’t worry that’s normal.

What I learned in those years is that not every platform is for you, but a widespread social media net is helpful. I tried most of the bigger ones and developed my own routine, in time you will do the same. Try them all out, see which ones you like best and focus on those. For me, it’s Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. However, all the others are used as well, just not directly. I know that sounds confusing, so let me explain.

I have a blog, a simple WordPress blog, which you know because that’s where you are reading this piece. So, if you scroll down to the end of the post, you’ll see a row of share buttons, they are a vital part of the promotion. I got them from AdToAny, which is a very handy add-on that can be used with WordPress or with your website. Keep those buttons in mind, I come back to them soon.

Now, Facebook is what I use the most. A Facebook account is free, so is having a page with Facebook. So in addition to my normal account, I created an author page dedicated to nothing but my work as an author. I have others as well, but for this let’s focus on the author page. That author page is (for me) promotion central. There I post updates, release dates, book covers, can start giveaways and much more. It’s the place where my readers can contact me easily, read my bio, get informed of sales or day’s were a book is free. In addition, Facebook has many groups dedicated to reading, publishing and promoting your books. At the moment I have around 100 groups I regularly post in, reaching about 750 000 people that way on average. Of which maybe a third are actually readers and not other authors doing the same. Still, it’s free and spreads the word, it also leads back to your author page.

Then there is Twitter, in my mind it’s a great tool but also tiresome and time-consuming. Unless you link it with your Facebook page, which will save you a lot of time. How you link it depends on which platform you like more to use, don’t make the mistake and link them both ways, I did that at first and ended up with a posting loop that cost me followers and likes. If you work with Facebook more often, you let Facebook post on your Twitter, and if you like Twitter better you let Twitter post on your Facebook page. Another thing that makes Twitter more useful are Tweet schedulers, but I will talk about those in a separate article. Because they are a little tricky.

Moving on to Pinterest, which is specialized in pictures that you post on boards. Each picture you post can have a caption, meaning you can add information to the picture and what you think others should know about it. For example, you could post your book cover with a short description and a link to Amazon. If you use blurb cards, banners or posters, you can post those to your boards and have additional exposure.

Now as I said there are more social media out there, but those are the three I use regularly. Yet most of the time I actually only post on my blog and Facebook, but share it with all my social media accounts. How and Why?

Let’s answer the Why first. A widespread social media net catches more people gives you more exposure and more chance of sales. But posting in each separately will take you forever.

pictogram social media
Now to the how. Let’s use a graphic for that.

Ok, remember the share buttons I told you about at the start, now we get back to those. In the center, you see my blog with those share buttons. I write my most important information’s and updates and post them on my blog. Then I use the share to any buttons, sharing my post with all my social media accounts, except for Twitter, because my Facebook is linked to that and the moment I share it with Facebook, automatically share it on Twitter as well.

Other stuff that is mostly directed to Facebook users I only post on Facebook and share it automatically on Twitter.

With a set up like this, you can reach hundreds of thousands of people, and if you’re lucky some of them might buy your book. Yet before you jump around and clap your hands in joy, let me dampen that a bit, it’s still hard work, and still takes time and most of all it’s not a guaranty of selling a lot. However, if the content you share is of interest you will build up a readership and the likeliness of sales will increase in time.

NEW BOOK COMING OUT AUG 5TH

Have you ever gone to one of those comedy shows, where the comedian stands on the stage and makes fun of you and anyone else in the crowd? Yet instead of getting angry, threatening with fists for the insult or insulting back, you laugh. Why? I have no f***ing clue. To me, it’s a riddle. One I have observed many times over and that inspired me to experiment a little last year when I participated for the first time in NaNoWriMo (2015).
A story, a mystery and crime where the main character interacts with you, the reader. My son calls it breaking the fourth dimension. Lucy Cain is one hell of a complicated woman, with a hidden temper. A temper, you the reader get to see when nobody else in the story does. Because you are the visitor in her mind, as she and Sam Wilcox meet over something as simple as a building project, that quickly turns into the search for a woman looking like Lucy and somehow it seems, she might be related to her.
The problem is, Lucy is not happy with you intruding, at first. Imagine Deadpool meets Jeff Dunham as they play Sherlock Holmes.
Rant Cover new pre order signNow available for pre-order with an introduction price of 1.99 US https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01IJT3X48

One of my beta readers said: “I never laughed so much reading a mystery”

another told me: “I never realized how funny it is being yelled at.”

My husband said: “It’s funny and captivating,  but most of all engaging.” but of course his opinion is biased.  But to me it’s a compliment because usually, he doesn’t like what I write, it’s too mushy in his mind.

The Diaries of Kairie Lawless and my point about labels

I usually don’t publish the synopsis before I even finished writing the book, but considering what happened in Orlando, the outrageous laws put in place in some states to protect the “normal” people from those “bad LGBTQ” people and  post eligibly congratulating Trump for having told everyone that this would happen (wonder how he knew) I will post it. Why? Because the story was inspired by many of those things, not only from the past few months or years, not just from what happened in the US but throughout my lifetime and the countries I lived in.

Being labeled is not a new problem, not a new fashion or a recently developed hatred. It’s a mental attitude passed down for generations, almost like a cancer that never got cut out. Yet I always believed that the more advanced we got, the more we understood why things are the way they are, that it would get better. I truly thought that one day we would grow above it. Seems I was more than just wrong, I was galaxies far off. So I wrote a book, painting the world as I see it come to pass if we don’t turn around quickly as one race of human beings and smarten up. I apologize to the American People that I used their country as my stage, but sadly you have the guy running for president that inspired a lot of it. And just like him I know how to exploit the idiocy of others.

 

The Diaries of Kairie Lawless

Kairie Stone grew up surrounded by love and understanding, was taught to show compassion and not to judge people for anything but their actions. When Hildo Clithump becomes president of the United States of America her world slowly begins to change. She wasn’t blind, but the changes were subliminal and many that weren’t directly affected didn’t notice. When her best friend takes her life, and another gets beaten to an inch of his life, Kairie opens her eyes and is shocked at what she finds.

Only her realisation comes too late. As Hildo Clithump’s chances of re-election dwindle he ensures his world will come true and declares martial law.

Kairie’s world shatters when everyone is forced out on the street, their ID’s confiscated, and anyone who is considered other taken away. Her parents resist and get killed in front of her, she gets taken, labelled, sterilized and her name changed to a designation, Agnostic. From that day onward, Kairie is a Zero. Nameless, faceless, right less and isolated from all others.  Only when her greatest enemy turns out to be her protector things begin to turn around and Kairie discovers the power of being a Zero. Her goal to destroy this new regime under Clithump and free those labelled.

 

I am not religious, but I respect anyone with faith as long as that person doesn’t use it to hurt others. I am not part of a specific political party, but I respect anyone who is. As long as they don’t use it to hurt another. I don’t care about skin color, heritage or the country someone was born in. Unless they use it to rectify their hatred and violence.

The problem is not religion, is not skin color, is not sexual orientation or any other label a person can be given. The problem isn’t the label, its how we think of those we label and how we act towards them.

I gladly be called white, female, agnostic, hetero sexual, dyslexic, and handicapped as long as it isn’t meant as an insult or used to attack me. As long as it isn’t said in order to separate me from what I am when you take all those labels away, HUMAN.

In my story a label is used to make a person other, to differentiate between lower and higher humans, those worth and those unworthy because they are not the norm. But who decides what the norm is? Society, a President, the military, God, or each person for themselves.

Be the person that doesn’t label, that doesn’t judge by anything other than the actions of one person. No more hatred, no more killing. Let go of the labels.

the diaries of Kiarie Lawless

 

 

 

 

 

 

Readingsample The Diaries of Kiarie Lawless

The Diaries of Kairie Lawless

I started a new series and it’s coming along, sadly not as fast as I wish it wild simply because I have so many things to do lately. Still I thought I treat you to the epilogue and first chapter of it. It’s still the draft version, unedited and raw, so don’t expect much. Still it is enough to give you an idea of what the story will be about. It’s the first of a three book series, telling the story of how the world went to hell and back. It’s a story that picks up diversity and intolerance of those diversities. Maybe it’s the way I grew up with a mother that is handicapped and a father who became handicapped during my childhood, but to me diversity, people who were different, were never something to look down at, or see as different. When you boil it down, we are all human, suffering the same struggles and fears, asking the same questions about the universe and searching for their answers.

Happenings like the signing of LGBT laws with the farce of protection or Donald Trumps call for a wall and all the other things going on in the world make me fear what will come of it. This series is a representation of those fears taken to an (hopefully) extreme.

Readingsample The Diaries of Kiarie Lawless

New Project Death City Unit

I started a new project, so far the title is Death City Unit, but I’m not totally sure about keeping it. It will be a scientific inspired fiction romance, with some erotic elements.

The story tells of J.J. Sanders a soldier for most of his life, who should have died on the battlefield, when a grenade ripped him apart. Instead he survives and wakes in a hospital, the limbs he should have lost, replaced by bionics, and officially no longer alive.

After he recovers he has to make a decision, once made there is no way back. He chose, and finds himself still in his world, only he learns that it’s much more and much larger then he knew.

Of course, that’s not enough drama. Neither is meeting his new female partner Imani, who not only towers over him in height, but is other-human. Before they can bond, or he follow the sudden attraction he feels towards her, chaos brakes out.

Instead of slowly easing into this new life, Imani and he have to cross over into a different world to save the multiverse and Imani’s world.

Obviously this is only a rough summary of the basic idea, in time I will tell you more. However as a treat I offer you the first two chapters of the first draft… again it’s a FIRST DRAFT… meaning far, far, far away from done. Still it will give you a feel for the story… so here it is.

Death City Unit first draft