A Response to Linchpin

Screen shot 2013-09-20 at 11.24.27 AM“Linchpin” is a compelling piece of work by Seth Godin. Our professor suggested getting the audiobook version so that we could listen to it while we worked. This in itself was a novel idea I was surprised I’d never tried, being such a podcast fan. I ordered it the very next day.

Some people might have instantly downloaded it, but I thought: “Golly, if I had the CD version, I could let my classmates and friends who are interested borrow it”.

I was trying to think in what could be a “linchpin” mindset before actually reading Linchpin. Also, I am a sucker for the tangible-ness that is a CD, a book – something to hold.

Weeks passed. I checked the mail every day, received all of my other class books – still no Linchpin. Faithful to my purchase, I checked my mail until the day before it was supposed to be finished. Nothing. I used Download Helper on Firefox to download a YouTube rip of the audio version. I had no time to loose.

One of the biggest concepts that stuck with me was the idea of being an artist. Being a senior in art college is just as fun as it is extremely daunting – with the clock seemingly racing us to push out cover letters, resumes, and portfolios so that we can get a job and make something of our degree. I have seen it happen more frequently than ever in my time at this school that there is a dangerous disconnect between focusing on “getting the job” and “being the artist”.

One of Seth Godin’s moments that I had to jot down while listening was, “Art is anything that’s creative, passionate, and emotional.” The quote reminded me of another favorite – one I would say that I live by, and always think of, from one of Chuck Palahniuk’s novels, Diary: “Everything you do is a self-portrait.” If these two quotes are true, I suppose me trying to get a tangible, inspirational, and informative item I could share with my friends in and outside of the class says a lot about me.

When you put love into the work that you do, and when you know it’s what you would rather be doing over anything else – that is when you create things you can genuinely stand by. I believe that it is those moments when you are capable of showing the most true form of yourself. Linchpin was a further iteration of that feeling: do what you love, and the money will follow. I always try and remember to come back to the reason I came to art school in the first place: I love making things. Telling stories. I have been told I’m not half bad at it.

This year is going to be about having faith in the inner artist in myself and in others. By honing that, according to this novel, I can surely become an indispensable team player.

The audiobook finally arrived in my mailbox this week. Hallelujah.

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