I recently read The Intersection of Joy and Money by Mackey Miriam McNeill and found it to be time well spent — a worthwhile read towards a worthwhile pursuit. Two things really struck me about the book:
1) McNeill talks about how good she is with money in the conventional sense — prodigious saver, patient investor, smart consumer. But she also confesses how she was fearful about money, too frugal sometimes, and just not 100% at ease with her relationship to money. I’m also very “good” with money so to hear from someone with similar good habits that there is more to consider was comforting.
2) I loved how McNeill talked about “choosing again.” When you make a money mistake, say you overspend, just choose again going forward to go back to smarter spending. The symplicity of Choose Again as a mantra really resonated.
The Intersection of Joy and Money by Mackey Miriam McNeill is a well-organized book with inspirational anecdotes but also meaty how-to’s and strategies. I highly recommend it, even if you already know a lot about personal finance and especially if you don’t.
I’ve been to a lot of fun conferences and talks lately. It makes me terribly behind on my work but it’s also a part of my work because I get inspiration and information to share. In just the past week, I’ve attended the Savor the Success Rock The World conference, the 92nd Street Y talk with George Lopez, and a panel discussion featuring Asian-American authors Lisa Takeuchi Cullen and Alison Singh Gee and author’s agent Kirby Kim. Here are some of my favorite takeaways:
Heather Thomson, founder of Yummie Tummie, at Savor the Success Rock The World:
- There is no better way to learn than by working at a start-up
- Luck and fate play a big role. This is true on the upside and a down swing
- Ideas are your money — you have to protect your design integrity
- Let the passion take you over
- Don’t start the business if you have doubts
- On landing in Oprah’s Favorite Things within three months of launching: We built a website immediately with sticks and glue. We’re just overhauling it now (five years later) and investing $300k. You can go a long way with sticks and glue
- On taking $18k in orders at her first trade show: When you have that kind of momentum, you never pull the rope back
George Lopez, comedian and author, at the 92nd Street Y interviewed by Judy Gold:
- On turning 50: AARP wished me Happy Birthday before any of my family members
- On taking 4-5 showers per day: I have more epsom salts than colognes
- The George Lopez Show was the greatest thing that happened to me (CCL’s note: I love it when people appreciate their success!)
- On his driving force: I wanted to be somebody more than nobody
- To the audience member who is still an aspiring comic at age 46 with no agent yet: You’re never too old. Continue to write and go to clubs
The Time Inc A3-sponsored writer’s panel:
- Alison Singh Gee – I wrote one scene at a time while teaching (CCL’s note: there is no excuse about not having the time!)
- Kirby Kim (on what he looks for as an agent) – I want to be moved
- Lisa Takeuchi Cullen – you can’t have spirits and ghosts in a Chirstian-published novel (CCL’s note: ok, that’s not a business tip, but a super fun fact)
- Alison Singh Gee (on what it took to get published) – I decided it’s going to happen. I’m going to do whatever I have to do. Make your life about this process
- Lisa Takeuchi Cullen – workshops and conferences are tremendously helpful
- Lisa Takeuchi Cullen – Getting ideas isn’t difficult. The difficulty is in figuring out which are books and which are great ideas
- Kirby Kim – Don’t wait to be done (before trying to get published)
- Kirby Kim – Is what you have commercially viable?
- Alison Singh Gee – you have to take the reins on publicity. Who are you going to contact? How will you get the word out? (Gee asked 50 influential friends to post on their Facebook!)
- Lisa Takeuchi Cullen – your agent is the primary editor. Your book editor acquires