April 8, 2013 By deborah ager
Seth Godin says, on his blog, to pick yourself.
An example: Many years ago, I started a poetry journal called 32 Poems Magazine. Here’s why I thought I could start a magazine:
- I knew excellent poets who could provide poems.
- I understood print buying and production.
- My background in direct mail fundraising would help with subscriptions and fundraising.
- My web experience meant I could build a website in WordPress.
- My graduate degree meant I could edit.
- I had the fabulous John Poch to help.
Was I an expert? Nope. Did I have any experience with running a magazine? Nope.
Here’s all that I did not know:
- How to start a nonprofit (took 18 pages of paperwork and hours on the phone with the IRS).
- How to form a board.
- How to code PHP for WordPress.
- Many other tasks too numerous to mention.
Despite all of the above, I just did it. I started it with a small pink flyer we handed out at the Associated Writing Programs conference in Baltimore, MD. Stan Plumly may have been one of the first to receive a pink flyer. He kindly did not tell me I was insane. If he had, however, he would not have stopped me.
Then, we got the first subscriber. I thought I’d throw up, but I kept pressing forward anyway.
Bottom Line: Don’t wait to be asked to:
- Start a magazine.
- Manage a literary website.
- Edit literary work.
- Publish a book.
- Create a Jewish poetry anthology (for instance).
Create and then do.