// February 7th, 2013 // Comments Off // Book Reviews
There are three things in the world that I love doing: playing outdoors, creating and reading to learn. Today I have the biggest thing to share with you because I had a chance to read one of the BEST books on marketing your business you could ever read. I came away with a new sense of enthusiasm, excitement and passion for action that I hope by the time you’ve read this you’ll be as excited as I am.
I’d like to introduce to you Margot Potter, author of my new favorite marketing book, The Fine Art of Shameless Self Promotion. I had the honor of chatting with her about her creative life, marketing, and few other bits and bobs. So with no further adieu, I give you the interview with Margot Potter.
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Martiel: Margot, please introduce yourself?
Margot: Hi! My name is Margot Potter. I’m known throughout the Craftiverse as The Impatient Crafter and sometimes Madge. I’m a TV host, author, designer and entrepreneur, you can find me at my website www.margotpotter.com and my blogs www.theimpatientcrafter.com and www.craft-you.com. .
Martiel: What does “being creative” mean to you?
Margot: It means being able to approach everything in life with a sense of adventure, wonder and great curiosity. It means taking the road less traveled in everything you do, being willing to color outside of the lines and see things from many perspectives. Creativity isn’t just about making art; it’s about making a fascinating life. Creative people approach everything as an adventure..
Martiel: Can you talk about the moment when you realized that creating was something you absolutely had to do?
Margot: I honestly can’t think about a time when I was not creative. I grew up surrounded by creative people who came from generations of creative people before them. It’s in my blood. Even as a small child, I was always busy doing things, making things, singing my own little songs, writing my own little plays. Creativity is an inherent part of who I am.
Martiel: What kinds of creative rituals or routines do you have?
Margot: I wake up every morning and spend some time thinking. Then I get up, pour some coffee, chat with my hubby and head down to my studio to blog and do my social networking. From there I pretty much make it up as I go along and it’s never really the same. I just follow my intuition, unless there’s a deadline in which case, I get things done!
Martiel: What medium would you like to learn but haven’t yet?
Margot: There are so many, really. I’d love to learn more about photography and photo editing using Photoshop. I’ve got a ukulele I’d like to learn how to play. I’d love to work on my crochet skills. I want to learn more bench jewelry skills. I’d like to play with three dimensional printing. I’m endlessly curious!
Martiel: What is the first art project you can remember?
Margot: Why do you think it is relevant in your memory? Hmmm…that’s a good question. I have memories of making art from as far back as I can remember. The first really significant self guided project was a series of hand quilted small soft sculptures I made when I was 14 years old. I made them while watching the mini-series Roots. I entered them into a local art show and they won awards. I would suppose this is relevant because it was the first time I realized that I really might be on to something!
Martiel: What inspired your book, “The Fine Art of Shameless Self Promotion?”
Margot: I have been sharing my journey from the start on my blogs and about four years ago I took down several years of posts from The Impatient Blogger and stored them on my hard drive. I started thinking about the idea of making a series of LifeCrafting books, so things were extracted and put into that folder and new ideas were formed, edited and fine tuned. This is the first one to make it to an e-book. Mostly because I got so many emails from people asking for career advice and I decided the best way to provide it was through a book. This is part of my Craft. You. brand and the www.craft-you.com site, which is a new direction for me professionally and one I’m super excited about!
Martiel: Your book is clearly inspirational, I felt that way as I read each page. If you could pick a lesson (aside from being inspired to go out and promote their brand) from your book that you’d like your audience to take away with them, what would it be and why?
Margot: What I really hope people take away from the book is that you can do and be anything you can imagine if you’re clear in your intention and willing to work hard to make it real. I want to share my message of actively participating in your success, because I think it’s important. A lot of these self help focused concepts are really passive; this is a more active, interactive approach. I want people to know that your message matters and you should not feel the least bit weird about sharing it. We all have something of value to share with the world. The more we shine, the more we give other people permission to do the same.
Martiel: Everyone feels like their efforts are going nowhere sometimes. In reality, sometimes they are and sometimes they aren’t. When you are feeling overwhelmed with your promotional activities, how do you decompress, reassess and move forward?
Margot: I step away and reboot, I meditate, I drink a glass of wine, I listen to music, I go for a walk, I snuggle my loved ones, I pat my puppies, I shift my perspective. I remember what’s real and what’s important. Success isn’t about awards, accolades, money and stuff; it’s about loving and being loved in return. The rest is just what we do to pass the time, so we might as well do something interesting. And if things really aren’t working, sometimes you have to be painfully honest and be willing to walk away or start over.
Martiel: In your book you discuss the myth of competition – I couldn’t agree with you more! What advise can you give our audience about how to stop competing and start creating?
Margot: Just that. Stop looking around and comparing yourself to everyone else. Stop worrying about what they’re doing or what they have and put your energy instead into fine tuning who you are, what you have to offer and why that matters. I recommend spending less time on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and more time doing tangible, concrete things! We’re becoming too voyeuristic and disconnected and our sense of reality is skewed by virtual reality. Sometimes the best thing we can do to counteract that is to unplug and plug into real three dimensional life!
Martiel: How do you think your creativity and artistic ability has shaped your book’s message?
Margot: I think my creativity is the message in everything I do and that shines through in all of my creations. Crafting was an accidental career; writing and performing are my true loves. But fully embracing the fact that we are all crafting our lives was born from spending the past 15 years making and sharing that passion with others. When you realize it isn’t the thing you make, but the act of creating that has the magic, everything you do becomes infused with that energy.
Martiel: If you could be any kind of art apparatus, what would you be and why?
Margot: Hmmm…I can’t really imagine myself as an apparatus! But I do like to think of myself as an instrument of love. I like to think we are all instruments of love. It doesn’t matter what form that takes, just that it takes form. It’s powerful stuff to allow that creative force to come through us and inspire others. Sometimes it’s a big box of crayons, a palette of paints, a blank page of sheet music, a saxophone, a clear voice ringing through the darkness, a pen taken to paper, or fingers dancing across a keyboard, but when we’re creating, we’re channeling something bigger and more powerful than any of us individually. I’d like to think I’m a cog in that cosmic creative wheel. I suppose if I were pressed to pick an apparatus to be, it would probably be lovely to be a blank canvas, fully open to the whimsy of an artist’s imagination. Yes.
Interested in purchasing Margot’s book?
Use the code CHAWINTER for 20% off of the e-book cover price. Click here to purchase.
Margot has also generously offered some FREEBIES! Check them out here!
Visit Margot online and see what she is up to, read her blog or just say hello.