30 Days of Local Praise

My resolution this year isn’t to abstain from anything — it’s to create positive change through praising local businesses.   I’m calling my resolution 30 Days of Local Praise, and the idea is to give one positive online review about a local business every day for a month. I’m going […]

Resolution 101: Shop Like a Localist

Okay, let’s just put it out there — I’m a resolution junkie. I like giving stuff up. I’m really good at discipline. I like competition and challenges, and it doesn’t matter so much to me if I’m competing with other people or myself or even with a calendar (like we […]

A Procrastinator’s Guide to Birmingham Christmas Shopping

It’s the most wonderful time of the year for local shopkeepers — gifts bought online won’t make it in time for Christmas morning, and the malls are so busy and crowded that they make Scrooges out of even the cheeriest holiday shoppers. For the next couple of days, shopping small […]

Huntsville’s Lowe Mill Has Artists, Innovators … and Me!

When I think of warehouses, I normally think of cookie-cutter, homogenized products that ship out to big box stores — but at Huntsville’s Lowe Mill, the warehouse has been reclaimed and repurposed by painters, architects, craftspeople and other artists. The result is a group of people who work side-by-side to […]

Who’s Afraid of Self-Publishing? I Am!

Self-publishing is an exercise in: “How much do you want it?”   Do you want it enough to hand-wrap so many books you want to scream and make twice-weekly trips to the post office to ship out books during holiday season? Do you want it enough to keep up with […]

Shop Local & Wrap Local!

I try to be a serious person (mostly), but I really love gift wrapping. I like getting creative with paper and string and creating a package that feels personal and creates a little bit of excitement under the tree. I collect ribbon scraps … I actually enjoy baking the hundreds of […]

On the Air with the Localist

Update: I had a great time with the guys at Rely Local this morning — if you’d like to listen in, here’s an MP3 download of the whole program. (If you’re not into country music, you can fast forward to my parts: they’re at the very beginning, at 13:40 and […]

Give a Book! … and a Hashtag

Penguin is one of my favorite publishers: They produce beautiful editions of classic books. (Those clothbound covers that you see at Church Street in my Daily South picture? Those are Penguin books.) They have an amazing bookmobile that travels around NYC. And their mascot is a penguin. Come on — […]

Success! The First Localist Book Signing Is a Wrap!

I’ve worked a lot of book signings — and they’re mostly terrible. An author sits on one side of a table with a stack of books, and people stream into the store doing everything they can to avoid the table, the books and the author. It’s like someone found a […]