Lisa A. Kramer

Author, Speaker, Theater Artist, Creativity Facilitator


Building Community vs. Finding Leads

Building Community vs. Finding Leads
by Lisa A Kramer
The book is published. The year has changed. Taxes are submitted (not really, but just go with it). Now what?

This is the question that starts my days a lot lately. Somehow the fantasy of publishing, for me and many others, includes a suddent radical change. A book publishes, people become interested, you get invited on talk shows, people ask you for your autograph, someone wants to take you to lunch, money roles in.

It's all fantasy, really. I learned that when publishing The excitement,pride, and energy of seeing my first novel in print, and actually on bookstore shelves, led to a feeling of deflation and emptiness and "now what"? 

Actually, I get this feeling after any stage production as well. It's not a feeling of defeat or frustration, it's more like the energy of a slowly deflating balloon. You've poured your energy into this thing, this product, this creation out of your imagination or (in the case of Re-Creating the World) out of years of exploration, practice, and experience.  And then, it launches, leaving a melancholy sense of accomplishment and emptiness.  


The Gift of Creativity and A Huge Thank You

The Gift of Creativity and A Huge Thank You
by Lisa A Kramer
Hello Friends!

It's been a long time hasn't it? I've been working on books, thinking about projects, and focusing a little on what I really want out of life. The truth is, that chosing a life that focuses on something so intangible as my belief in the power of creativity and how it can bring people together, is not an easy one. Making a living out of creative projects in the world of late-stage capitalism seems a ridiculous choice. And yet, it's who I am and who I want to be.  I am so grateful to the people who have helped me discover this path, and that includes so many different people, I want to celebrate you today!

But first, I am thrilled to announce that Re-Creating the World: The Power and Joy of Collaborative Creativity is now available. 

Yes, this book that I have been working on for years, is finally out in the universe. All of the links can be found on here. I hope that you will consider spreading the word, or giving yourself and people you love the gift of creativity!


Call for Submissions!

Call for Submissions!
by Lisa A Kramer

Hello Creative Collaborators!

Spark Collaborative Media is pleased to invite you to submit your work for our first anthology!

Reclaiming Goddesses: Bringing the World into Balance

We are looking for short stories, poetry, artwork, personal essays, creative non-fiction that explore a world where the goddesses of the past (from all cultures) reclaim their voices and their purposes.

This anthology will be compiled and edited by me, with contributions from a diverse group of voices.
  • Submission Deadline: December 31, 2023 at 11:59 pm.
  • Tentative Publication Date:  December 2024 
How to Submit
  • We are collecting submissions on Google Forms.
  • Prose pieces (including short stories, essays, reflections, etc.): 1000-5000 words

So You Created Something: Now What???

by Lisa A Kramer

I posted this article on Substack yesterday. Different people find me in different ways, but I wanted to share here. Feel free to follow Sparks of Creative Rebellion on substack for interesting articles on creative journeys. 

Books, Words, Information, Power

Books, Words, Information, Power
by Lisa A Kramer
In 2014, I published my first book, a piece of speculative fiction called 

It tells the story of a young women living in a despotic culture where women are not allowed to read or write, and their required purpose is to marry young and make babies. However, Andra BetScriviner has other ideas when she discovers she has the ability to write things into reality, and that many women have unique abilities.

Her friends, including supportive men and people of diverse backgrounds come together to change society.

The leader of this country called New North (which in my mind was New England) was a horrible, greedy, ambitious man who believed he was the eye of god and had divine right to rule. 


In 2016, I felt like I should apologize to the world. Don't get me wrong, I am very proud of the book and its empowering message, but we had entered into a reality that sounded a little too familiar. 

I know, my words did not make this reality happen.

Sparking Creative Rebellion: An Invitation

Sparking Creative Rebellion: An Invitation
by Lisa A Kramer
When I was really young, I loved recording radio shows using a cassette recorder and a friend/sibling or two.. (Yes, I'm mature, deal with it). The topics varied. Sometimes I would do fake news interviews, or tell spooky stories complete with sound effects. Sometime songs made appearances, sung with the enthusiasm of any young girl who already loved the idea of Broadway musicals. (The first album I ever begged to own was the original cast recording of Annie).

I bet, if I search my mother's house, I will find some of those tapes lying around. They are probably mixed in with old stories I wrote, pictures I made with paints or crayons. Maybe event a few broken down crafts.

Dusty remnants of...

Gateless: The Power of Positive Feedback

by Lisa A Kramer
We have been raised to believe that criticism is the only way to learn and grow.

It occurs everywhere. Red marks on school papers. Annual reviews. Critical analysis of books, plays, artwork--anything we produce that can be judged by others. Criticism comes from outside sources, but also from that voice in your own head telling you that your work will never live up to some supreme ideal.

Some people thrive on criticism, becoming more and more determined to prove everyone wrong. Many shrivel up and freeze--thinking "if I can't do it right, if I can't be perfect, than I'm not good enough. I should just stop."

What would happen if we approached feedback with a different mentality? What would happen...

A Conversation with Creativity

by Lisa A Kramer
Me: Why do you call me? What do you want me to know?

C: We call on each other, don't we?

Me: I guess . . . but what does that mean?

C: It means that I am everywhere. I am within you and outside of you. But, I cannot extend beyond you without a little help. I am a verb.

Me: You are a verb? I thought you were a noun?

C: I am both, aren't I? Actually I an also be an adjective. An act of creativity takes place when a creative person creates something.

Me: Okay. Why is that important?

C: I exist in action. Every moment in time something new is created. I can be found in the burst of bird song, the...

On Creativity: Share Your Thoughts

by Lisa A Kramer
Anyone who has read my work at any point should recognize one important thing: I believe in the power of creativity to change the world! That belief lies at the core of my authentic self.

Still, I can't tell you how many strange looks I receive when I interact with people and ask them to let go a little, to play with me in a creative way. I'm used to it by now. I've come to recognize that my joie de vivre, or my natural instinct to approach life in a playful and creative way doesn't always mesh with other people's reality.  That's okay, we are all different, and that is part of what makes this world so rich and wonderful.

As I...

P.O.W.ERful Surprises: Books Don't Disappear

by Lisa A Kramer
Once upon a time I wrote a novel. It was published, people read it, and it received good reviews and was shortlisted for a couple of awards. I was (and still am) very proud of the book.

But that isn't enough to keep a book in the eyes of readers. Not if you don't have a huge budget, a publicity team, and a recognizable name.

For a while, as authors should do, I spent all my time promoting that book. I announced when it was nominated for awards. I attended book events and signings. I did workshops based off of the themes of the book . I took pictures of it sitting on bookstore shelves. I autographed copies and sent personal messages...

Bringing Stories to Life

by Lisa A Kramer
My subtitle for this website says it all "Writer, theatre artist, educator, and woman who wields words."

What does it mean to wield words?

I have always loved words and languages. An avid reader since I could first put those mysterious symbols together to form word (at a very young age) I easily lost myself in stories. I found comfort in the worlds built inside my by words meticulously placed on the page by mysterious magicians (yes I thought of them as magical people) called authors.

Then I realized that words can also be brought to life in other ways, taken from the page and breathed into reality on the stage or the screen.  Or sometimes combined with images to create pictures in...

The Serendipity of Reinvention

by Lisa A Kramer
I am in the process of redesigning my life, and I am so excited.

For a long time now, I have been struggling with the status quo, and feeling trapped by a career that I sort of fell into--because of expectations from my degrees, life choices, etc.  I was losing a sense of passion and purpose, feeling underpaid, underappreciated, and like everything had become a battle that had no meaning. While I was working hard, it no longer feels fulfilling.

So I knew it was time for a change.

Still, it has taken a long time for me to really leap. I have not completely quit my day job (because the reality is that I cannot afford to do that) but I have...

When Words Sing: A Review of ECHO by Pam Muñoz Ryan

by Lisa A Kramer
I close the book with tears in my eyes. Tears of joy and hope, because of a story that comes full circle. Tears of sadness and fear, because the words of historical fiction too closely reflect similar word being spouted as political rhetoric today. Aching tears because of the beauty of words blended together in a song of perfection--the type I yearn to be able to write myself, but fear I never will. Tears of disappointment because it is over.

There are only two things that frustrate me about this book. One, is that I want to hear the music playing . . . I am tempted to get an audio version for just that reason. At the same time, I...

Richness and Brutality: A Review of MOTHER NILE by Warren Adler

Richness and Brutality: A Review of MOTHER NILE by Warren Adler
by Lisa A Kramer
More and more often lately, I have been offered a free copy of a book in exchange for an honest review. I don't accept every offer,  sometimes because a book doesn't interest me, sometimes because I don't have time, and sometimes because I don't feel that an honest review will be welcomed.

Still, I love these opportunities, especially when it introduces me to an author that I haven't discovered yet or a world where I have yet to journey, even in my mind.

MOTHER NILE by Warren Adler, offered me a journey into a rich, dark, somewhat disturbing world of sex, power, politics, drugs, and insight into an Egypt I never imagined. It's difficult for me to say I loved this book,...

When Do You Stop Reading?

by Lisa A Kramer
I ran into a little snafu with my plan to read and review all the books on the short list for the Sarton Literary Award . . . what do I do if I don't like a book? I tend to only write reviews for books that I feel I can give 4 or 5 stars to--books that draw me in and make me want to read more. While a 3 star book, for me, is something that I liked (or at least enjoyed elements of it); it isn't one that will stay with me forever or one that inspires me in some way. Anything below that, is either painful for me to get through or I found simply awful.

Now, I'm not...

A Review of SINGULARITY: Psychology, Terror, and the Power of the Mind

by Lisa A Kramer
"Pulvis et umbra sumus {We are but dust and shadows}" --Horace When Helena Hann-Basquiat asked if anyone would be interested in reading an advanced copy of Singularity I jumped at the opportunity, despite the fact that I have limited time to read/write/think/create this summer. Why? Because I love the way these collaborators work, and the beauty of their words even when they write terrifying or horrific things. Reading one of the Jessica B. Bell stories is like taking a journey into the deepest, darkest secrets of your own mind--the place where sex, violence, desire, and power all whisper their most precious secrets. This book does not disappoint. Each story, each character is rich and intriguing, as you are brought into a place where you...

What I did on my Summer Vacation by Helena-Hann Basquiat

by Lisa A Kramer
It has been a while since we have celebrated anyone's unique powers, but I am thrilled to be able to celebrate Helena Hann-Basquiat, the voice behind Memoirs of a Dilettante, Volumes I & II, plus the fabulous Shakespeare-esque play Penelope, and the chilling Jessica (all links can be found below). I can't wait to read her next book, Singularity.  More important than her amazing talent, though, is that this person has slowly become my friend. She is raw, honest and supportive. She shares insight, reads drafts, and, more lends a sympathetic ear in times of trouble. I loved receiving  this piece, where she dips into her 12-year-old self for all to enjoy.


What I did on my Summer Vacation (by Helena Hann-Basquiat,...

Singularity Cover Reveal: The Power of Community, Support, and Social Media

by Lisa A Kramer
While the act of writing might be a solitary one, in the modern world of books the reality is that in order to succeed even the most talented author needs help. Sure, those with more traditional contracts have teams of support (if they are lucky) from editing to publicity , but there is no guarantee. When published through smaller, independent publishing houses (like Word Hermit Press) or self-publishing, it becomes even more important to develop a team of supporters to help spread the word and make sure your work is the best possible product. You need reliable  beta-readers, fantastic editors, and a supportive network that believes in your work and wants to see it succeed. This can be a challenge for...

How to Write Terrible Characters

by Lisa A Kramer
I'm not talking about the characters we love to hate--they are usually layered and intriguing.

I'm not talking about the characters who seduce you into believing they are charming and good but then reveal their inner demons. I believe that darkness and evil hide itself in beauty sometimes, that's what makes it so fascinating. I also believe that interesting characters have layers of complexity, and that good stories uncover some of those layers as we go.

I'm not even talking about a distrustful narrator, one whom you are never sure whether you are supposed to like or dislike them, and question the story they tell. Those characters are intentionally complex and layered, you aren't supposed to like them necessarily, but you are supposed to empathize and understand...

Books: The Story of When You Are

by Lisa A Kramer
I've been doing a lot of reading lately.

To be honest, I've been doing much more reading than writing. I know I should be writing, I know that becoming a "successful" writer means you must go beyond your first book. I still have many stories to tell, but at  the moment those stories are a jumbled mess of ideas that refuse to find their way to the page.

So I read.

In addition to reading, though, I am making a greater effort to review anything and everything I read (or at the very least give the book a star rating). Why? Because Reviews Matter!!!! {There's your (not so subtle) reminder to help your favorite authors by reviewing their books. That goes for P.O.W.ER as well. Here's...