I’ve been a marketing message finder and copywriter since 2009. And then? After eight years in business, I had the knowing that, once again, I was on my ‘couch of comfort.’
That’s the thing about us heroes. Once we hear the ‘call to more,’ it’s only a matter of time before we’re lacing up our boots and putting our backpacks for another journey.
For me, this has meant making room for the work my whole life has set me up for: To spread the idea that each one of us has a hero story, and a writing practice can help us find it. When I was in college, I read a book called the Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell, and decided hmm… what if I lived my life as if I were a hero on a journey? It was a secret, simple decision, and yet it has kept me alive, especially when I felt lost in the wilderness of life.
In the hero story, one of the things we talk about is how the hero is always given a ‘magical tool’ to help her on her path.
The hero story has been one of those tools for me.
But it wasn’t the only one — I also got the ‘magical tool’ of having a writing practice.
By writing practice, I mean writing in a journal. Or, as we talk about in my workshop Writing Your Way Home, it could also mean writing a letter to someone (whether or not you actually send it to them). Or, it could be you writing to your 86 year old self. Or, your favorite grandmother who died 30 years ago. Or your 68 year old body.
For me, these two tools — the hero story and a writing practice — have been the oars on the little boat that is my life.
‘Smooth seas don’t make good sailors,’ as they say.
So I now do this work — accompanying people who are called to investigate their hero story through their writing practice — here at Stella Orange.
And at the same time, I’ve joined forces with two colleagues to open an advising shop called Orange, Liston, & Dew. Because while I continue to believe that ‘words create worlds,’ I know that words alone are only one ingredient to building a profitable, sustainable business. The other two ingredients? Vision and action. So I now do my marketing, messaging, and word work in cahoots with a visionary business advisor and a master of action. We offer a real alternative for professionals who respect the intelligence of their customers and who value truth over sales gimmicks, quality over the rush of selling something ‘for cheap’, relationships over transactions, and real transformation more than the quick fix. We are holding our clients’ dreams with them. And this requires a different sort of conversation, community, and support than what’s been common in the marketplace. This “New Way” of Doing and Being in Business (the Beaver Way, if you will) is unfolding before our very eyes — and we’re creating all this goodness, together.
I’m based in Buffalo, New York, where I live in a really cool house built in 1902 with my husband– The Philosopher–and our dog, Chachi.