Posts Tagged ‘Amy Taylor’

Rocking the mic(rosoft Word) as a force for good

Rocking the mic(rosoft Word) as a force for good


Wordologist Amy Taylor writes and lives with creative zest. Her deep love for connecting with people is reflected in everything she does, including her “Joy of Dirty Dishes” essay below. She recently launched an inspiring interview blog called Good People of Earth, with the tagline: “The world is full of good people. We’re introducing you to them one interview at a time.”  As a long-time Amy fan, I’m honored to share this larger-than-life writer with you.

Q. You caught my eye on the Brains on Fire blog, where you’re “busy rocking the mic(rosoft Word)” as a Lead Copywriter. What’s a favorite Brains on Fire project and why?

A. That is such a difficult question! One of my recent (and really fun) projects was writing scripts for Wonderopolis’ “Camp What-a-Wonder” podcasts. Camp What-a-Wonder inspires kids and families to keep wondering and learning together throughout the school-free summer months. This year we decided to create Camp What-a-Wonder podcasts that would guide kids on weekly offline wonder adventures.

I think this project was particularly meaningful as it gave me an opportunity to relive my happy childhood. As a child, my parents read to us constantly, and we always had art projects going on somewhere in the house. All of this allowed my creative side to flourish from a young age. I think technology has really changed the childhood experience for modern kids, and not necessarily in a good way. I love that the podcasts allowed us to leverage technology to inspire children to get active, go outside, explore, daydream, create, and use their imaginations.

Q. On your site,, you share a brilliant ideology: “Your message should be as remarkable as your mark on the world.” How did you come to this thought?

A. I think a lot of brands get so caught up in the business of business that they lose touch with their humanity. A business is made up of people—and made by people. Every brand, business, and organization begins as a passion and a dream, whatever that may be. People are exposed to thousands of marketing messages per day. Your customers (and potential customers) don’t want you to assault them with a bunch of marketing mumbo jumbo, they want to hear about the passion and dream that get you out of bed each morning.

Q. As a “wordologist,” where do you want to take your writing in, say, 10 years?

A. After years and years of encouragement (and borderline badgering) from friends and family, I just finished writing my first children’s book—and am embarking on the quest to find a publisher. My dream is to see my story in the hands of children around the world, and nestled between beloved bookshelf classics like “Goodnight Moon,” “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs,” and “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie.”

On a more universal scale, I want to be able to give back. I have been very blessed to have amazing mentors guiding me throughout my career and life. I want to help other young writers however I can. I believe the more connected and supportive we are as a creative community, the more empowered we are to use our gifts to inspire positive change in the world.

Q. Is your passion for animal advocacy behind your @NoMeatballs Twitter identity? Or do you really have story behind meatball loathing? Tell, tell.

A. I always get a kick out of all the speculation about my Twitter handle. In retrospect, it probably wasn’t the best choice, but it has turned out to be quite the conversational piece.

While it’s true that I am an incredibly passionate animal advocate, the real backstory is far less exciting. I was about 10 years old, sitting down to dinner the day after Halloween. Like most kids, I had no interest in the spaghetti and meatballs placed before me when I could be chowing down on candy. My mother, however, was unwavering in her demands that I eat real food before Halloween candy. I tried to choke down a meatball in a fit of anger, which only resulted in my body instantly rejecting the effort. The meatball came right back up. I have held it against meatballs ever since.

Q. Share three of your writing heroes – and why they inspire you.

A. James Reeves: I don’t remember how I discovered James Reeves, but I am thankful I did. “The Road to Somewhere” is beyond amazing. As soon as I finished reading it, I got up from my sofa and wrote him a letter.

Anthony Bourdain: Even if snarky charm isn’t your cup of tea, there’s no denying the man has a way with words. His poetic reflection on the human spirit is beautiful and inspiring. We may not all be able to travel the world 333 days out of every year, but Bourdain finds a way to bring the world to us through his writing.

Bukowski, Kerouac, Nin, Hemingway and Cummings: I’m counting this bunch as one entity, as I like to think of them as my spirit-side sensei. They all lived beautifully broken lives, but somehow found a way to channel their experiences, adventures, and heartbreaks into some of the most marvelous literary works in the world.

“The Joy of Dirty Dishes”

I hate it when people leave, but I love the silent hum and hush that fills the house after a happy evening with people you love. I spent my childhood sneaking peeks at my parents’ parties, trying to uncover where that magic comes from. To this day, I still haven’t been able to find the right word for it, but I know what it looks like. Empty wine bottles, spent corks scatted about. Layers of plates stacked on top of one another. Plate, wadded up cocktail napkin, utensil, plate, wadded up cocktail napkin, utensil. Stacks and stacks of dirty dishes in the sink—but for just one night, nobody cares.

It leaves the empty spaces between walls and floors, foundation and ceiling radiating with the energy of life.

It’s hard for me to imagine many other moments in life when I feel more acutely aware of the passing of time than in the hum and hush. These moments leave me feeling deeply blessed, wishing for a bigger dinner table…and more minutes, more years, more dinners, more cheers, more refills and popped corks and cups of coffee (I won’t drink) with dessert.

If I ever write a cookbook, I’m going to call it “The Joy of Dirty Dishes.”

And I will mean it.

Connect with Amy

See her amazing websites:

Twitter: @NoMeatballs