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The Art Factory
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     At age 43, newly-hired Jack Concannon has his eyes opened once he joins Heartland Greetings, known to it’s three-hundred-plus artists as “The Art Factory.” He is sent on a research trip to NYC along with several Heartland staff artists. They include Mary Beth, a pretty, twenty-three year old painter of “bunnies and duckies” who’s stuck with an unhappy marriage, and Squeek, a single, sexy, thirty-five year old “gypsy temptress” who’s idea of fun is to sneak sexual imagery into her best-selling floral cards.

    Mary Beth falls in love. Squeek decides to go after Jack with no holds barred. The aftershocks will seriously jeopardize Jack’s new career, Mary Beth’s marriage, and Squeek’s firm conviction that the way to a man's heart is through his you know what.  

    All this is set in a uniquely fascinating world: three-hundred artists packed into the seventh and eighth floors of the Heartland Greetings headquarters, a young, mostly female sub-culture within a male dominated corporate juggernaut. You’ll be there at Committee and see how the sausage is made: watch artwork run a gauntlet of nit-picks and laughable changes which are not at all laughable to the artists fighting to keep their art and egos intact.

     You'll see how love affairs are made and corporate rules are broken at artist costume parties and after-work pubs. But you’ll also brawl in a country road house, take a surprise long-distance trip to the Teton mountains, and watch an angry redneck husband, armed and dangerous, bent on revenge.

     You’ll probably fall in love, too.

     “The Art Factory” is a page turner, fun to read, a look into a fascinating world you didn’t even know existed.  But after all the laughing, and all the loving, you’ll reach a point where you’re afraid to turn the page.


THE AUTHOR: Barrie Maguire, a graduate of Notre Dame, spent 15 years in advertising at N.W.Ayer in Philadelphia, New York and Chicago. He joined Hallmark Cards in 1976 where he eventually became Director of Creative Services. Since leaving Hallmark in 1985 he has been an editorial illustrator and has illustrated and/or co-authored many humor books, including Custody of Dad and The 77 Habits of Highly Ineffective People. His essays have appeared in newspapers all across North America and his website, NewsArt.com, syndicates his op-ed art, and that of eleven other artists, around the world. He also is an avid painter of Ireland and his work can be found at maguiregallery.com, a website that features the artwork of his family..

Contact Barrie Maguire                           BUY The Art Factory for $2.99          

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