Exit the Cave
Embracing a Life of Courage, Creativity, and Radical Imagination
Redeem your story, redefine your creativity, and make a life that truly matters
Sometimes the greatest gift you can receive is for your life to fall apart. After years stuck in a painful cycle fueled by past abuse and ongoing addiction, actor, artist, and director Blaine Hogan finally hit rock bottom. No longer able to hide behind the veneer of success or find comfort in the shadows of compulsion, Blaine was forced to look at the story his life was telling and realize he'd lost the plot.
Desperate to find hope, he gave up a budding career and took a major life detour where he discovered that facing his past was the key to unlocking a new kind of creativity. In Exit the Cave, Blaine shares the stories that shaped him while exploring how our relationship to our past defines how we imagine the future and live in the present. Through powerful personal revelations, he invites you to take up the practices of radical imagination and real creativity so you can tell a better story with your life.
If you've ever been stuck, addicted, ashamed, discontented, or lost, take courage--a richer, more imaginative, and meaningful life is waiting for you just outside the cave.
"A tender but fierce story of survival, reckoning, and redemption. Blaine manages to somehow weave themes of acting, allegory, addiction, family, and faith into one beautifully written account of his own healing. This is the kind of story that will redeem you."--Laura McKowen, bestselling author of We Are the Luckiest
"Blaine Hogan has inspired me for many years with his unique way of seeing the world. In this book you'll find a blast of inspiration and a trusty guide to help you exit the cave and enter a world that is real and beautiful and vital."--Brad Montague, New York Times bestselling author and illustrator of The Circles All Around Us, Becoming Better Grownups, and Kid President's Guide to Being Awesome
"There is a subversive holiness in telling a story others are too scared to tell, and Blaine has mastered the art of doing this--over and over again. Don't miss the invitation in this book to understand the significance of your own scars and what to do with them."
Jeff Goins, bestselling author of The Art of Work
"Blaine Hogan has inspired me for many years with his unique way of seeing the world. In this book you'll find a blast of inspiration and a trusty guide to help you exit the cave and enter a world that is real and beautiful and vital."
Brad Montague, New York Times bestselling author and illustrator of The Circles All Around Us, Becoming Better Grownups, and Kid President's Guide to Being Awesome
"Blaine Hogan's memoir is an intense, stunningly honest, and profoundly hopeful promise that telling the truth can set the heart free. His story is riveting, heartbreaking, and hilarious. This brilliantly written and transformational book will allure you to tell your truths. You'll find yourself stumbling into grace."
Dan B. Allender, PhD, professor of counseling psychology and founding president of The Allender Center at The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology
"Exit the Cave is hands down one of the most honest and human books I've read in a long, long time. The courage Blaine Hogan unveils on each page, the wisdom and humor embodied in each chapter, and the storytelling is masterful. An absolute must-read!"
Steve Carter, pastor and author of The Thing Beneath the Thing
"There are few books that mirror the dynamism of the human experience. That hold your hand through pain and joy, raw wounds and raucous laughter, all at the same time. Blaine Hogan writes with an honesty and an imagery that will wake you up and remind you you're alive. Exit the Cave is a gift for our time."
Ashlee Eiland, colead pastor of Mars Hill Bible Church and author of Human(kind)
"Blaine Hogan is a master wordsmith. This gift is not only delightful for the brain but also soothing to the heart. Especially when speaking of the raw realities Hogan shares in these pages. His vulnerability when telling very personal stories appeals to every aspect of the creative soul. And boy, has he accrued a deep well of wisdom by walking through the fires of life! As a creative who has also had my fair share of wrestling through the journeys of inner healing, trauma resolution, and mental health recovery, I savor each word as true, good, wholesome food for the soul. I am better today, in art and heart, because I've read this book. What a way to challenge and inspire the artisan soul that resides within every one of us! To use our pain and our trek through it as fuel to create wonderful things is a great gift that we are beautifully reminded of in Exit the Cave."
Christine D'Clario, award-winning singer, songwriter, speaker, author, advocate, and philanthropist
"Hogan's book carves a brave way forward for the Christian imagination."
Sara Billups, faith and culture writer and author of Orphaned Believers (forthcoming)
"Honest. Brave. Moving. Blaine turns his scars into lanterns, giving us faithful guides out of our own dark caves."
Kevin "KB" Burgess, rapper, designer, and Dove Award-winning artist
"Exit the Cave is a wise, hilarious, and memorable journey of Blaine Hogan's search for better questions and truer answers. Blaine invites us to see that healing requires us to enter the cracks and confront the ghosts of our stories in order to shape our desired future. As a licensed mental health counselor, I've longed for a book like Exit the Cave to show others that managing self-destructive behaviors is not only ineffective, it distracts us from all the heartache and glory that our life stories reveal. I'm grateful for Blaine's book."
Jay Stringer, psychotherapist and author of Unwanted
"This book brought me comfort in the hours when I didn't realize how much I needed the warmth and honesty of Blaine's words. The truth revealed in these pages helps me grapple with my own truth. Blaine's honesty and storytelling transport you to a fireside chat that lets you know it's safe to be yourself. He lets you in and shows you that you are not alone. There is such grace, humor, and healing in this journey. Blaine Hogan will inspire you to have courage."
Nikia Phoenix, wellness creative, storyteller, and commercial actress
"A glance at the table of contents alone reveals Blaine Hogan's intimate familiarity with the underworld of his own psyche, as well as his deep faith that alongside his fears and shadows resides his greatest stores of love, creativity, and wholeness. He writes clearly, passionately, and vulnerably. In the space he holds, you will meet him--and you may in fact meet yourself."
Audrey Assad, musician, producer, author, and mother
"Exit the Cave is a tender but fierce story of survival, reckoning, and healing. Blaine manages to somehow weave themes of acting, allegory, family, addiction, faith, and redemption into one beautifully written account of his own healing. It's a testament to the miraculous powers of the human spirit, creativity, and love. This is the kind of story that heals both individuals and families. I loved it."
Laura McKowen, New York Times bestselling author of We Are the Luckiest