Greed or Need? How about a tool to use: Money. 4


For many of us in creative careers the M word is one which makes for uncomfortable conversation. I’m going to just come out and write it, Money. They don’t call me Fearless for no reason. Let me write this again.

Money, money, money, money, money.

Read the line above out loud.

Do it again, this time really fast.

Money, money, money, money, money.

How did that feel? Did you really do it? Did you really read that line of pure m word out loud? If you didn’t, come on do it, don’t be a spoiled sport.

For some reason when we bring up the subject of money, everyone assumes greed is involved. Oddly, you could discuss ice-cream and the same assumption would not be made at all. If I were to write about greed or need and used the word ice cream you wouldn’t bat an eye lash at me. You might even make the false assumption that you need ice-cream.

Here’s the deal, we live in a world that uses money. Like it, don’t like it, whether you are an ardent capitalist or a fervent socialist, money is part of our world. For creative types this poses a wee bit of a problem. After all, we don’t want to be seen as greedy. Somehow our creative street cred is at stake if we decide to go pro. Somehow we’ll be seen as sell outs or even worse, maybe we’ll lose that inspirational mojo that makes us so happy.

How do I know? Until about a year ago, I held similar beliefs. In fact, I was a bit pompous about the subject. 14 years ago, I shed my suit and dumped my “good” shoes, left a marriage to a man from a family of substantial means and decided I would never look back. I wasn’t ever going to be like those institutionalized socio-paths who didn’t care if they facilitated a hostile takeover that made 50,000 people jobless.

I was going to be noble, honorable, and a good person. Like many people who are disgusted by runaway institutionalized capitalism I had assigned a moral value to money. Like many people, my mental money box neither hurt the runaway Capitalists nor did it do anything to make me a better person, more moral, or more virtuous.  It made me a self righteous jerk, even if I didn’t spout these ideals out loud; I thought these things loudly both to myself and about myself.  It hurt me, my family and yes, my community. How so?

Money buys groceries.

There we are, that simple. Money pays the bills. Is it greedy to want to buy groceries? Is it greedy to want to have a house of your own? Is it greedy to want to have enough of a surplus to help others who may be struggling?

I was fooling myself. I will never ever be the person who thinks of others as beneath me because of accident of birth. I will never be the person who could be part of an economic plan that harmed thousands of people. I will never be a person who sells people faulty products or harmful chemicals.  I am not someone who needs to step on the backs and heads of others to move up in the world. This is not who I am, I never could be that person; no one can make me be that person.

It doesn’t bastardize your creativity to sell items you make or produce. You are not greedy for wanting make a fair wage for your labors and talents.  You already know money doesn’t buy happiness or creativity. Money can’t kill creativity either, the only thing that can is your attitude regarding the acquisition of funds.

You can still be a good person, a real artist, continue to be talented and sell your goods and services.

The good part?

Money buys ice-cream.[button link="https://twitter.com/CrochetLibFront/status/227910828639272960" size="large" style="info" bg_color="#195409"]Do you like ice cream? Tweet it by clicking the button![/button]

I want you to have more ice-cream! So sign up as CLF member today to find the tools, skills and information use need to increase your on-line sales of crochet goods, patterns and services!

 


About Laurie A. Wheeler

Laurie A. Wheeler is a blogger, crochet addict, yarn designer and champion for independant artisans and crafters. She is also known as Fearless Leader of the Crochet Liberation Front.


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4 thoughts on “Greed or Need? How about a tool to use: Money.

  • Reply
    Barb Stanford

    Great post. My husband, a musician/songwriter, has gone thru a similar journey on art vs. money. Many musicians think that playing anything other than “originals” is somehow selling out their creativity. Writing & playing his own stuff feeds his creative soul, but playing covers in bars is what pays the mortgage. After decades of crocheting, I never made any money at it until just last year. It wasn’t a conscious decision, it just never occurred to me to put a price on what I did as a hobby to feed my own creativity. Also, I think for many women (yes, I know there are many men who crochet – this is just a generality!!!), there is a tendency to not place a monetary value or to de-value what’s traditionally been seen as “women’s work.”

    • Reply
      Laurie A. Wheeler Post author

      Barb, you are correct. One of the reasons that you will see (and I’m generalizing here) relatively new comers to the industry that happen to be male rise rapidly in the industry is that they see what they do as a business and take it seriously professionally. Women often don’t see what we do as something of value or worth because we’ve been trained to believe that traditional male pursuits are of more value.

  • Reply
    Nancy Davis

    I was raised in a family that was not rich, but well off. Upper middle class. I rarely ever wanted for anything. As my life progressed toward my late thirties, early 40s, my situation changed. Not to go into too much detail, but there were times I didn’t know how I would feed my kids, and times I wasn’t sure there would be a roof over our heads either. I learned a lot of things from the travails we went through: that nothing matters so much as family and friends who love you for what you are, not what you can buy was perhaps the most important. You think you know these things, but when they get taught to you on such a visceral level, you see that it is not BAD to want to have a comfortable life, to be able to put good healthy meals on your table in your own place. Things are better now, although they could be better still. I just wanted to say you are right, and it was a great post. :)