App Wednesday – Creative Thinking in 84 cards or less

Creative Thinking. Let’s be cool and call in CT for the rest of the post. Effective CT is the foundation of good writing. But is there a way, or a need, to warm up the old noggin to make sure we’re getting quality CT from it rather than just tired memories in disguise? Is there a way to, like a good workout does for our bodies, exercise our brains to get them ready to give us quality CT when we need it?

I think there is. So did Einstein. So does a guy named Roger von Oech. He’s an author, inventor, and speaker. According to his website, “his seminars and products have enriched the creativity of millions around the world.” He has an iPhone app called the “Creative Whack Pack” (CWP) that consists of 84 creativity strategies that look like playing cards that are supposed to stimulate us to think creatively. Von Oech’s app has received this accolade: “The most impressive brainstorming tool in the App Store, hands down.” —Innovation Tools. At over a million copies sold, the CWP is also an iTunes bestseller. But, the question is, what can it do to stimulate quality writing? Well, let’s all put our $1.99 where our mouths are and find out.

Or not. Would you rely upon an app to stimulate the creative juices? Or will old-fashioned doodling to the trick? To the keyboards!


Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and author whose latest, award-winning suspense thriller, The Brink, is now available as an eBook for Kindle and Barnes & Noble nook for only $2.99!

The Brink is a hell of a read.” – Bestselling author Sandra Brown

“Mark Fadden is a masterful storyteller.” – Writer’s Digest

“Mark Fadden is the next Dan Brown.” – Triple C Ranch Book Club, Southlake, Texas

Check out The Brink and Mark’s other books at

Triple C Ranch book club hosts “the next Dan Brown”

Once finishing a book, many readers would love the chance to ask the author questions about it. The ladies of the Triple C Ranch neighborhood in Southlake got that very chance when Colleyville author Mark Fadden stopped by during their recent book club meeting as they discussed his latest thriller, The Brink. “It was an engaging read,” said Patty Jefferson. “I read it in a day and a half. It was a real page turner.” Arlene Dang, one of the group’s founders, agreed with Jefferson and had perhaps the highest praise a thriller writer could hear. “I think he’s the next Dan Brown.” While the rest of the women had similar sentiments about the book, they also had some constructive criticism for Fadden. “While it would spoil the book to mention their exact comments, I can say that they had some specific ideas about the ending and some of the characters in the book. Anytime that we as authors can get this kind of feedback from our readers, it’s invaluable.”

The Triple C Ranch Book Club, which is comprised of women from all walks of life including housewives, lawyers and educators, began with an idea that sprang from a conversation between two of the women in the neighborhood. Dang and Sipho Gumbo had a conversation about books and found out that they both were active on Good Reads, an Internet website where readers discuss their favorite books with others. “We thought why not do the same thing in our neighborhood?” said Dang. “We knew that several people in our neighborhood liked to read. Creating a book club just seemed a natural fit.” Gumbo, whose husband has written a book of historical fiction about African politics, entitled The Fire Inside, agreed. “We wanted to have a neighborhood group where people could share and socialize.”

The club, which meets the third Sunday of every month, has a dozen members and has even created their own Facebook page. Fadden’s novel, The Brink, was the third book they’ve read. Sometimes, the ladies have different opinions about characters and plots of the books they review, and they each respect the other’s opinion. Other times they all agree about a book, like when they all thought that the bestseller Eat, Pray, Love wasn’t their cup of tea. Lorianne Hartman, who hosted the meeting that Fadden attended, picked The Weight of Water for their next book. “It’s a very informal group of women who like to read and like to share,” said Hartman. “We’ve got a great group and I look forward to spending time with these good friends.”

Fadden will be signing copies of The Brink at the Southlake Barnes & Noble book store on Saturday, Oct 9, from 1:00pm-3:00pm. To preview it, visit his website at