I’m running late…….. (In life.)

I’ve always been a late bloomer. I was born late, in October, making me the runt of the class litter. Last one to get my driver’s license. Last one to turn 21. Last one to have a boyfriend. Last one to hit a host of other teenage milestones that I won’t go into here. I […]

What Happens When You Call Someone Out (And You Should)

When I was a graduate student at Emerson College, I got a teaching fellowship and found myself for the first time teaching writing comp to a roomful of freshmen. And while I never met a captive audience I didn’t like, this group had its share of challenges—the most memorable being a very tall, very wise-ass […]

Do You Really Want It, Or You Just Saying That?

I spoke at a big design conference called How Design Live earlier this month for creative professionals (marketers, designers, writers) hungry for fresh ideas—and got to watch one of my heroes take the stage. Liz Gilbert. As in, Eat Pray Love Liz Gilbert. She has a stunningly simple stage presence. She stood there and barely […]

I So Don’t Feel Like Doing Anything.

How are you? Feeling inspired, fired up, and ready to do stuff? Me neither. It doesn’t mean I won’t do anything. It doesn’t even mean I won’t like doing it when I get moving. But inspired to do things, before I do them? Please. If I waited to be inspired to do things, nothing would […]

Can You See the Future? I Can’t. I’m Near-Sighted. Or, Notes from HOW Design Live

I get annoyed easily and often, seizing on the most benign things with a kind of righteous anger. Like when people say, “hot enough for ya?” and “The thing is, is that” (WHY do we say “is” twice. WHYYYYY. Who started this? I want to bludgeon them.) Also, I get annoyed at profiles on dating […]

Some People Are Going to Hate You for It. Don’t Listen.

A few weeks ago, I spoke at an event. The folks were lovely: Kind, friendly, considerate and welcoming. The talk I gave, on how to get beyond commodity, master your message, and stand out in a sea of sameness, was very well received and got top ratings by attendees (they do real-time ratings–the minute you […]

Being Novel Is Not the Same as Taking a Risk

This weekend I went to see my friend perform in a staged reading of “Welcome to the Doll Den.” It’s a play inspired by real-life events about the first all-female radio station, WGAL, in Memphis, Tennessee in 1955. Talk about standing out—these ladies were the first, they were special, they were different. Over the course […]

3 ways you’re hiding on stage (and how to stand out instead)

I see you over there you know. Hiding. In plain sight. I hide, too. I hide from email. I hide from people. I’m also partial to the French Exit, where you just sneak away from the pack and jump in a Lyft so you can be home in bed watching SNL before anyone knows you’re […]

Mel Robbins says if you can count, you can change

Watching Mel Robbins take the stage last week at the Energetic Women’s Conference in Indianapolis was like seeing a rock star on the final leg of her tour. (She’ll be going off the road as she heads into production for her syndicated…

Your inner critic is a puppet master

Hey-o. I recently spent two days at a Gateless writing retreat that was part garden party, part creative brainstorm, part coven. It was wickedly fun.  I’m also trained in the Gateless Method, the goal of which is to slap a muzzle on…

Why Your Audience Isn't a Bunch of Fish to Shoot in a Barrel

Seth Godin's blog the other day was simply this: "Of course it’s easy to shoot fish in a barrel. The difficult part, the part no one talks about, is getting the fish into the barrel in the first place." The man is a walking mic drop. Think…

I'm Allergic to Two Things: Gluten and Cliché

It's true. Ok. To be fair, I have a severe gluten INTOLERANCE, not an allergy. But I have developed a pretty bad allergy to cliché. Symptoms include: involuntary eye rolling, a mild but persistent headache, and a creeping sense of boredom…

Marketing is not a fancy hat (so don’t wear one)

I was on a client call recently, a team of folks from the financial services industry (whom I’ve been spending more and more time with lately), and we were talking over a concept that mattered to them and that they wanted to communicate. “Can’t…

Don’t Scrub the Grit from Your Story

Once I worked with a professional comic, helping with ideas for a TEDx talk about comedy she’d like to give. She shared with me a terrifying account of the night, decades ago, when her abusive husband threatened her with a blunt object…