With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.
OK, updates first:
1) It seems like we have broken through into spring-like weather here in the Northeast. Fifty degrees and sunny feels like t-shirt weather. Fresh warm air on the skin always surprises me when it returns; I did not know I missed feeling a little breeze on my forearms but once it returns it fills me with the same joy as waking to the sounds of spring birds.
2) Urbanmonks is clarifying its plans for incubating local publishing houses that produce street books. I am working closely with my west coast partners to establish a street book press in Oakland that will sell from an Urbanmonks street cart that we will build in June.
We will launch a crowdfunding campaign in April to raise some capital to fund the building of a new cart and the establishment of a new street book press.
3) When I am selling books from the cart I receive a lot of feedback and encouragement. In the same way, when you drop an email or comment to me, it is greatly appreciated. A wind-in-the-sails sorta thing. Keeps the exchange flowing while the cart is still packed in storage. Let me know what you like and what you would like to see with the Urbanmonks.
4) General timeline for the next year or so for Urbanmonks Thinktank:
March-June 2015 We have about 5-10 new street book authors currently working on their books; during this process, we are working to iron out the format of the street book writing course. Hoping a handful of these books are strong enough to publish and sell this year.
June 2015 Build the new cart in Oakland for a July 4th launch.
July – December 2015 Have the two carts selling street books on both coasts. Establish contacts with potential authors and for two new carts/two new street book publishing houses to be built in 2016. Two potential locales for expansion: Minneapolis and Austin.
January 2016 Debut the street book course, which will be taught in person in NYC and Oakland as well as a correspondence version over the website. This course will nurture the production of crisp, stylish, street books.
June 2016 – Build two more carts and incubate two more street book publishing houses.
July - December 2016 - Have the four carts selling books.
January 2017 - Huge Urbanmonks Thinktank party where we get our four publishing houses together for a proper winter retreat to celebrate what we are building together.
Now, let’s drop a little wisdom before we part. Today I want to feature Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962), one of the wisest public figures of the 20th century. United States diplomat, social reformer, and wife of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. She lost both of her parents within one year when she was ten years old. She dealt with depression throughout her life, but seemed to funnel her strong emotions into empathy and care for others. Reading this sample of quotes, these little nuggets of insight, we can hear the themes of responding with courage, finding one's mission, and working hard to build a good life.
(Pictured below with her younger brother, practicing her shot, and in portrait; photos from FDR Presidential Library)
People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built.
Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.
Friendship with oneself is all-important, because without it one cannot be friends with anyone else in the world.
We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face. We must do that which we think we cannot.
You have to accept whatever comes and the only important thing is that you meet it with courage and with the best that you have to give.
I think, at a child's birth, if a mother could ask a fairy godmother to endow it with the most useful gift, that gift should be curiosity.
It is not more vacation we need - it is more vocation.
My experience has been that work is almost the best way to pull oneself out of the depths.