The Art of Asking: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help

The Art of Asking: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help

Amanda Palmer

Language: English

Pages: 352

ISBN: 1455581097

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Now with a new Postscript from Brain Pickings creator Maria Popova

Rock star, crowdfunding pioneer, and TED speaker Amanda Palmer knows all about asking. Performing as a living statue in a wedding dress, she wordlessly asked thousands of passersby for their dollars. When she became a singer, songwriter, and musician, she was not afraid to ask her audience to support her as she surfed the crowd (and slept on their couches while touring). And when she left her record label to strike out on her own, she asked her fans to support her in making an album, leading to the world's most successful music Kickstarter.

Even while Amanda is both celebrated and attacked for her fearlessness in asking for help, she finds that there are important things she cannot ask for-as a musician, as a friend, and as a wife. She learns that she isn't alone in this, that so many people are afraid to ask for help, and it paralyzes their lives and relationships. In this groundbreaking book, she explores these barriers in her own life and in the lives of those around her, and discovers the emotional, philosophical, and practical aspects of THE ART OF ASKING.

Part manifesto, part revelation, this is the story of an artist struggling with the new rules of exchange in the twenty-first century, both on and off the Internet. THE ART OF ASKING will inspire readers to rethink their own ideas about asking, giving, art, and love.

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soup.) My housemates at the Cloud Club: Lee Barron our hermit-y captain, Michael Pope, Cassandra Long, Tristan Allen, Steve Martin (no, not that Steve Martin), Mali Sastri, Vessela Stoyanova, and Nate Greenslit—I really love all of you. Thank you for being my Art Family. And long live the Mystery Aesthetic. Right as I was about to leave for Australia to work on the book, I walked into Trident, an independent bookstore in Boston, to use their bathroom. They’d laid Daring Greatly by Brené Brown

dropping in my hat—unless they were going out of their way to hide it. Day after day, I came to recognize him, and even expect him, and eventually we shared a tiny smile every time he passed by. It was a sweet, silent, secret little relationship. Towards the end of the summer, he kicked around one day until my flowers ran out, and shyly approached me—would I have a cup of coffee with him? Sure, I said. I figured I owed it to him. I was impressed he’d even asked. I went back to the ice-cream

creator explains their mission and delivers their appeal. I found myself cringing at the parade of crowdfunding videos in which my friends looked (or avoided looking) into the camera, stammering, Okay, heh heh, it’s AWKWARD TIME! Hi, everybody, um, here we go. Oh my god. We are so, so sorry to be asking, this is so embarrassing, but…please help us fund our album, because… I wanted to tell my friends it was not only unnecessary to act shame-ridden and apologetic, it was counterproductive. I

(The principal delivered a lecture that I would absolutely kill to have a recording of, just to be able to use the line you think you’re so special, Amanda, but you are not special in my techno-remix of “Creep” by Radiohead.) As I moved through my life as a statue and later as a musician, I started to understand. There’s a difference between wanting to be looked at and wanting to be seen. When you are looked at, your eyes can stay blissfully closed. You suck energy, you steal the spotlight.

him. It’s like you couldn’t see me. What do you mean? I don’t know. There’s just this thing I expect my lover or my friend to do when I’m really sick…you know? I felt stupid and childish all of a sudden. What thing? I don’t know. Cuddles? Talking? Love? Patting my head? Telling me everything will be fine? You stopped talking to me. Why? I said. I’m not angry. I swear. I’m just…asking. He looked confused. Then deep in thought. Well… he said slowly. Maybe it has something to do with what I

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