Mozart, compost and Writing Your Way Home

What a long, strange trip it’s been.

Just when you think you are getting the hang of the dance, the music changes.

And there you are on the dance floor, shaking your chewy salsa hips, your feet moving as if possessed by some demon, sweat dripping down your flesh like the holiest of holies… to Mozart.

You’ve given up trying to match the elevator muzak of mainstream culture long ago.

And you’ve grown attuned to listening for the music that broadcasts through the unexpected radio of your own heart.

(Whoever installed a radio in a rib cage has to have spent a few too many late nights alone in the garage, if you know what I mean).

But lately, someone has been messing with the station.

What happened to your jams?

What’s with this new DJ?

And when do we get to go back to our regularly scheduled programming?


Ah, my little cabbage.

But there’s the rub, isn’t it?

Do you get the joke?

Are you laughing yet? Or are you still in the freefall descent of the cartoon trapdoors opening beneath your feet, and you, falling, falling, falling, falling, falling, falling, falling . . .









Hello. Welcome to the ground floor. Please remove your shoes and socks, adjust your spine to the upright and unlocked position, and breathe.

You are okay.

Everything is okay.

Nothing is wrong here.

But we do have work to do. Choices to make. And a whole bunch of shit to move.

Don’t worry. Down here, your shit don’t stink.

It can smell like anything you want it to.

Mine smells like caramel corn with pecans and macadamias.

Maybe you’d like yours to smell like honeysuckle.

That sounds nice.

Here, grab a shovel.


Kurt Vonnegut, writer and guy I would want at all my dinner parties, once wrote: ‘The most beautiful peonies I ever saw… were grown in almost pure cat excrement.’

Compost as paradox.

Most people turn up their noses at compost.

We live in a time when most people throw their potato peels into a plastic bag and then put them in a plastic bin and then hire a vehicle to drive it out and dump it in a big pile of plastic bags, so they can’t smell the rot.

Please don’t feel guilty if you are not composting your kitchen scraps right now.

I’m not talking about your eggshells. In this story, your life is the compost.

Here, take this pitchfork.

Just give your pile a few good turns, so the air can get in there. That helps everything break down quicker.


Guys, I need to tell you something.

I’m teaching a new workshop, and it’s not about writing your website or writing email subject lines or anything like that.

This workshop is about bringing all of who you are to one spot, to have the best conversation ever.

It’s called Writing Your Way Home and it starts September 27th.

I’m attaching a flier (See attached).

Two things. One, if you want to do it, email me direct at to sign up. And two, if you have clients or friends who would eat this up, please share my flier or your personal recommendation with them.

(Note: I don’t want people to send this to their whole lists, as some mindless EMAIL BLAST. Instead, I want you to think of the one person who would love this, and text them or send them a post card or tell them with your mouth.)

This is for anyone who wants to explore a writing practice, as a way of picking their way through the wilderness of their own experience.

You do not need a business to participate. It’s open to everyone.

Stella Orange teaches her clients how to effectively market their business by telling a better story in their marketing— the story of the hero answering the call to more. A professional copywriter whose writing has generated millions of dollars in sales, Stella knows that the story we tell in our marketing matters a whole lot, because on a fundamental level, it shapes how people think about themselves and what’s even possible for them. Three times a month, Stella hosts a 90-minute Shut Up And Write session via videoconference for members of her Write Club community. She is based in Buffalo, New York, where she lives with her husband, the Philosopher, and their dog, Chachi. Get a copy of Stella’s position paper The New Marketing: How to Create Clients Without Feeling Gross, Icky or Manipulative at

Comments for this post are currently closed