Pardon me while I kvetch a little …

What a difference a week makes.  This time last Tuesday I was waxing poetic about George, our morning doorman; and how he always puts me in a frustratedgood mood.  Today I’m in a whole other frame of mind.

Maybe it’s the weather.  I am sick to death of sub-arctic temperatures.  Day after day after day after day.  And I am not exaggerating.  It is minus 28 celsius today, with the wind chill.  That is minus 18 degrees farenheit, in case you think I’m being a wimp.  Minus (bleep) 18!!!!!!!  And it’s been like this for weeks, maybe even more than a month.  And every second day it snows.  And then there was the ice storm.

And believe it or not the heat will have to be shut off in my apartment building on Thursday — from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  To fix some problem in the furnace.  Don’t get me started on that.

So yeah, I’m not quite as cheerful as I usually am.

Gotta let off some steam. Continue reading

Don’t take it personally …

I’ve been surrounded by creative people all my life, and I am one, myself.  And I’ve never known one, including me, who isn’t sensitive and easily hurt.  Guess it comes with slapthe territory.  We do lay our souls bare for everyone to see, after all.  And stomp all over.  Who wouldn’t be insecure?  So needless to say, today’s Daily Post resonated with me:

“Tell us about the harshest, most difficult to hear — but accurate — criticism you’ve ever gotten.  Does it still apply?”

Of course this could be taken any one of a number of ways.  The way you dress, the colour of your hair, your weight, your cooking skills, your breath, your driving, whatever.  But seeing as how we’re all here to share our creativity — be it writing or photography or art or baking or crafting — I thought I’d talk about how it feels when people criticize our work.

Having worked in the advertising industry as a writer/creative director for more years than I care to think about, I am VERY familiar with criticism.  While it sometimes feels like you’ve been slapped in the face, I have Continue reading

Day 134. Mind Blowing

One of the first assignments I had at Ogilvy was writing a direct mail package for a financial institution.  A Trust company.  In fact, it was a multi-wave campaign, mailmeaning, over a period of a couple of months there were three separate letters sent to the same people.

It was a time when there were a lot of ‘take-overs’ in the investment industry.  The losers, of course, were the customers.  Because there were problems during the transition periods, as there often are.  Mistakes were made, long time relationships were ignored.  These investors felt under-appreciated and taken for granted.  They were pissed off.  And fed up.

Our client, who had not been a victim of a take-over, wanted to take advantage of the situation.  The idea was to demonstrate their understanding, and to extol their own corporate virtues.  And to explain all the services they offered, blah blah blah.  They were a very successful, credible institution, so it wasn’t a ‘stretch’.

I was very involved in developing the creative strategy, as well as writing the letters.  As a result, I was heavily invested (no pun intended) in the campaign’s success.  This was also my first foray into direct marketing.  I came out of a general advertising (awareness) background.

The first wave was mailed.  About two weeks later, the Account Director responsible for the account stopped by Continue reading