This blog is a little different than most, so I don’t usually find something else that conveys, in a more compelling way, what I’m trying to say. Yet that’s what I found when I read Small Giants.
La Mariee – Marc Chagall, 1950
A few days after I finished reading it, I wrote about what I found special in the book. To my surprise, the author, Bo Burlingham, liked the post enough to comment on it. That’s how it all started.
Thanks to Bo (@BoBurlingham) and the generosity of the Small Giants Community (@smallgiantsbuzz), I’m happy to announce that we’ll be giving away up to 10 signed copies of the book. All you have to do is be one of the first 10 people to explain the kind of Small Giant you want to be. (Update: we decided to do away with the word count to encourage a broader level of participation. Now you can use as many or as few words as you want.)
If you’re not sure of what to write, this post I wrote is a good place to start: The American Beauty of Small Giants.
Add your Small Giant declaration as a comment to this post or write about it in your own blog and post the link as a comment. Then email me your mailing address at firstname.lastname@example.org. You’ll get a confirmation email from the folks at the Small Giants Community, and then your signed copy will be on its way.
Since Bo and the Small Giants Community have been gracious enough to give us a few copies, I want to help them out as well. It would be nice if we could give them a few comments that they could use to further promote their book, but if you object to your words being used in that way, then please state as much in your comments.
We’ll still send you a book. Our primary goal is to promote a discussion of principles, and we want to hear about your Small Giants vision regardless of how you feel about publicity.
I don’t expect that this will be an issue, but I reserve the right to make ineligible any comment that isn’t relevant. We want to make sure the books will go to those who will value them. Just write honestly, and you’ll be fine.
David – Donatello, 1466
Whoever writes the most compelling declaration will get a book that isn’t just signed; It’ll also have a personalized message from the author. Now you have even more of an incentive to write something great.
I wouldn’t be doing this promotion if I didn’t believe that the Small Giants book can help you do what you do in a more soulful way, whether you’re a small business owner, a creative type, a volunteer, a young employee, or a seasoned big-business executive.
The Cyclops – Odilon Redon, 1914
As if that weren’t enough, I happen to believe that the book offers the perspectives that can help America grow stronger. Hint: they’ve got nothing to do with too-big-to-fail thinking.
If you like what you read in the book and want to surround yourself with other like-minded individuals, then you might want to take a look at Small Giants Community. They’re a friendly group of people from what I’ve seen, and they might offer you just the support you need to become the Small Giant you want to be.
Peasant Wedding Feast – Pieter Bruegel, 1569
The Small Giant I want to be:
In case you need an example to get you started, here’s my take:
No one has ever called me a pillar of the community. It’s not that I blame them. In the past, I’ve been a little abrasive in stating my thoughts or trying to get things done.
A supervisor at work once tried to put a positive spin on that. In my evaluation, he wrote something like, “Nick is quick to point out ways in which we can improve.” What a diplomat he was!
To my regret, I’ve also been involved in projects where I burned bridges just by dealing incorrectly with the stresses at hand. I didn’t want to be that guy. I just never planned for anything better, and anything goes when you don’t have a plan.
The Red Tower – Giorgio de Chirico, 1913
That’s a glimpse at who I was, but that’s not how I want to leave this world. I want to become a person of character who inspires my fellow Americans with my creative endeavors. Ideally that will also involve some aspect of filmmaking, since the movies have been an important, often hopeful, part of my life since I was a kid.
Having an audience appreciate my work would be nice, but it would be a greater honor if other artists and technicians wanted to work with me based on my reputation for treating people right.
Yeah, someday I would like to be pillar of the community, like those old-world men I’ve admired from a distance, the ones whom others trust when a crisis strikes, the ones who instill integrity in others by the strength of their character.
I want the people with whom I work to go forth and do greater things when they leave my company, because I helped them learn, gave them freedom to discover their own sensibilities, and nurtured their capacities for excellence.
I’m not there yet. There are still parts of me that God and I are trying to polish, but that’s why I’m still a work in progress. Anyway, that’s the Small Giant I want to be someday. How about you?
Aurora Borealis – Frederic Church, 1865
(If you’ve enjoyed reading this post or some of the others I’ve written, consider signing up to get my posts by email. You can do that by clicking here. I don’t write every week. I only write when I have something worth writing and after I’ve spent some time considering my subject and finessing my thoughts. If you’re following along by email, you’ll know right away when I have a new post waiting for you, whether that’s next week or a month from now.)