Sunday, April 08, 2012

Get Storied - working my way through the Etsy Workbook from the Get Found symposium

It's quarter past four now. Too late to try and get back to sleep (did I mention it's AM?). Might as well stop procrastinating and try and reinvent myself.

I don't think of myself as a story teller. Perhaps it's because I can't tell jokes or maybe it's some emotional hang up from over aggressive teachers and my dyslexia. I don't know. Although, I enjoy writing and have had some rather amazing dreams that would make great short stories, novels, screen plays; I just can't seem to get past some invisible obstacle that would allow me to write them down. One of the main goals for this blog and the Crowing Hen guides is that maybe -just maybe a little bit please - maybe if I keep writing, eventually I will be able to write fiction. To tell stories. Maybe even make a living at it - but that is a dream for another day.

This year's Etsy Success Symposium: Get Found has inspired me to take my dabbling in selling yarn far more seriously. Since I have nothing else to do at 4:26am, I thought why not take a stab at the Story Telling part of the workbook.

A person seldom buys hand made goods these days just because. They buy more than the quality that handmade means, they seek out the story behind the object. Or at least that is what I do. I assume there are a couple of other people out there like me. It's time to update my profile, but I'm not sure how best to talk about myself in that way.

So here's my first draft - 4:30am first draft so please be gentile with me - attempt to answer the questions put to me by the workbook. Maybe later I can mine this exercise for some useful bits to reinvent my profile.


1. What is the set-up to your heroic origins? What humble beginnings or difficult
circumstances have you had to overcome? What is the origin to your powers? (Hint: usually
a response to something you found missing).

I am a country girl who was caught up in the fast pace city life. I always yearned for a way of being where I could take my time and do things right, but instead, I worked, went to university, and struggled very hard to carve out a place for myself in the world. But it didn't work, the harder I fought the less I felt like I belonged.

Then, just shy of finishing university, I got sick and nearly died. Among other things, I became allergic to the modern world and was in a way, forced into the life that I always dreamed of but never could imagine having.

While I was recovering, yarn became my comfort. I spent my effort learning everything there is to know about it. Through my hobby I found many friends who helped inspire me and coax me through the dark times.

2. What are you willing to fight for? What REALLY motivates you and gets you up in the
morning? Where do you put a stake in the ground?

Coffee gets me up in the morning, that and the insomnia.

But in seriousness, this is a tough one. Something I've often wondered. Should I say world peace? Ecological preservation? Pride in my skill? People? All very important things, but as much as I love them all... I can't honestly say it's sufficient.

The things that motivate me, that REALLY gets me up in the morning are so small they are invisible to most people.

The way the light catches a newly chopped onion, or the posture of a rooster just about to crow. A trampled flower growing in a crack in the side walk. The smell of pasta sauce that I not only cooked myself, but grew the ingredients.

I'm frustrated because these examples aren't capturing the emotion. plainly speaking, I catch a glimpse of some small detail of an everyday thing and I am overwhelmed by a serge of divine joy at the beauty.

A combination of potential for the future and natural, honest origins that are expressed by minutiae.

It's the ignored details that captivate me and for fear of being labelled a weirdo, the pattern that hand torn bread about to become pudding makes in the bowl is just one of those many little things that keeps me motivated throughout the day. The details are what I find worth fighting for.

All these glimpses of beauty can not be found in everything. The line of my computer mouse does nothing to inspire me. Instead, it seems to be limited to naturally occurring phenomena or things hand made from nature. The rosy glow of sunset glistening off a hair stick, hand carved from the wood of a peach tree.

That's enough for one morning. It's much more difficult than I expected. I'm not very happy with my answers and I don't see yet how this is going to help me. But there must be something to it, so I'll keep worrying away at it.

Three more questions to go, but I'll save that for the next time I can't sleep.

Think it might be late enough now I can get up and have some coffee.


Natalie Freed said...

This is beautiful and inspiring and I really really enjoyed reading it (and I'm a picky reader :). I hope you continue. Don't forget we are often the hardest on our own efforts!
I really want to do something like this (start learning to tell my story) in the coming year.

Josiane said...

In my opinion, there is very good material in this first draft. When you go back to mine it for your profile, I'm sure you'll find little gems in there, and you'll be able to weave them together to tell a very compelling story.

Michael Margolis said...

Thanks for diving into the material. As you already know, you can literally story yourself into being. It's just an exercise in become conscious of the stories that already inhabit your life's journey. An exercise in pattern recognition. Appreciate your sharing of the process so far.