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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

What I'm Reading/Book Club



I know I'm late but I finally got my Book Club questions and answers together for last month's second Book Club selection. Let's get into Amy Poehler's Yes Please

How did you relate to Poehler’s anxiety about the writing process—whether as a writer or as a person who’s had to share something with a large group of people?

I could absolutely relate to her anxiety. You know how you have to list hobbies on resumes, social media profiles, etc.? I’m always the girl who writes down “Writing.” I love to write and have always wanted to do it professionally. Lately, however, I’ve found myself with less and less time to write. Actually, it’s not just about time. It’s about lacking inspiration. Ideas come to me all the time but when I start to write, I can’t get my thoughts to flow for longer than a few chapters. Then, I’m worrying whether it’s good and I am going back to re-write before I even get into a good, creative space. The wall enters and my anxiety just sort of sits there like a paperweight on top of my creative process. I ignore it until I have a miserable day and remember that writing for pay is supposed to be a big part of my ultimate exit from corporate life. Tick, tock.  

How did you feel about the use of guest narrators/writers to tell the story?

I loved it. I think readers were given even more insight into who Amy is. Often, memoirs portray one side of a person’s slice of life story. I think the addition of other people was refreshing and I enjoyed the other points of view.  Everyone featured in Amy’s fancy personal sound booth (audio version) was fantastic  but my favorites were Seth Myers and Amy’s parents.

Amy talks a lot about her days as part of an improv troop. ..THE improv troop, if you will. Have you ever taken an improv class? Why?

Yes (which I’m sure you know since I wrote these questions)!  I didn’t take the class because of acting or comedic inclinations. I actually think I might suck at comedy BUT I loved it in spite of myself.  I took the class to break out of my shell and I learned so much. I can do ice breakers without blinking and I think the whole “Yes, Please” mentality transfers so well in all walks of life. It is an attitude with a lot of power.

Explain the significance of “You don’t always have to be the one to get the pudding” in your own life.

I agree with Amy that you don’t always have to get the pudding to be happy. Sometimes, missing out on the pudding can lead to better things. “When one door closes” and all that.  I think what’s important is to continue pursuing the pudding if it drives you. In plain terms, if you have dreams (pudding), don’t give up just because you couldn’t get a taste on the first go round. Keep pushing but do it for the love and not for the accolades (also pudding).

One of the quotes highlighted in the book is “Everybody is scared most of the time.” Do you agree?

Absolutely. I’ll even go a step forward and say if you’re not scared sometimes, you’re living a stagnant life. To be clear, I don’t mean you need go pick a fight or jump out of a plane for an adrenalin rush. What I mean is if you’re challenging yourself and stepping out of your comfort zone, you should be scared. Then you should strap on your courage and keep moving forward. On a deeper level, you should also know that if you are scared, you’re not alone. You can also know that haters and people who lash out, etc. are scared too. You don’t have to take their shit, but you should take some time to understand that their reaction to you may have absolutely nothing to do with you.

One of the larger lessons in the book is about recognizing you inner demon and silencing it.  How do you silence the inner demons in your life?


It depends on the day. I try to remind myself daily that I am a good person and can achieve my dreams…that there is enough for all of us and that stepping out on faith is enough. Some days that works and I’m like “Of course, girl. Go conquer the world.” Other days, let’s just say I need much more convincing.  I feel like that mean, destructive inner voice gets beat into submission more and more as I grow and develop confidence but I know it’s a lifelong process. 

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