What’s your Printery?

I love everything this video reveals about this man, his vision, his spirit, his work in the world… Amos Paul Kennedy, Jr, please take my money!

You will not get a degree
You will not go into extraordinary debt
You will print all day, every day
You will clean type
Wipe up ink
Smell the scent of grinding heavy metal night and day
You will not move back in with your parents
Nor struggle to have a quote/unquote “career”

You can give him money too, via his latest IndieGoGo campaign. Hat tip to Austin Kleon for alerting me (and thousands of other e-newsletter subscribers) to the existence of this inspirational being!

If a contribution isn’t in your budget right now, Amos Paul Kennedy, Jr offers an alternative to “join[ing] the growing movement of people who are taking control of their own damn lives.”


May we all find our own version of The Printery, which is, as Amos describes,

another path, a community that will assist you in achieving your dreams.

Not someone else’s dreams; YOUR dreams.

How to raise money for your business – a couple presentations from the archives

I recently discovered a couple recordings of talks I gave when I was in my Finance for Food prime, traveling throughout North America to give keynote presentations and teach workshops on raising money for food businesses.

My book had already been out for a while by then, so I’d had the opportunity to figure out a few things that I hadn’t known yet when I was writing it. More importantly, I’d also given enough presentations (so many!) to learn which things people really wanted to hear about, and what bored people to tears… so I’d like to think that these two videos deliver the best-of-the-best of what I had to offer back then.

Both of these talks were given to audiences of farmers (the Practical Farmers of Iowa Annual Conference and the Virginia Farm to Table conference, respectively), but I made sure to cover financing options for processed food businesses, too… and so many of these options are available to ANY type of business.

If you want to know about your options for raising money for your business and video is your thing, check these out!

How to evaluate a fundraising opportunity

A friend of mine in North Carolina is working on what sounds like a really awesome climate change video, and he recently asked me for fundraising advice. Here are the key points of the conversation, which I hope will benefit other people who know they’ll need money in order to launch an ambitious creative project.

“I’m starting to look around for capital,” he wrote to me, “namely philanthropists who won’t expect anything back. Any ideas about who might want to invest? I’m also thinking of going to SoCap in San Francisco, in October. Is that worthwhile?”

(SoCap is a big impact investing conference in San Francisco, and I’ll get into that in more detail in a minute.)

I love this stage of a project, when anything is possible! And of course it can be daunting, especially with something like a film that requires so much money to get off the ground. My friend is super smart to be thinking about fundraising early on in the process, and this is true of most projects: fundraising takes a LOT longer than you think it will, so if you know your’e going to need money at some point, start putting your fundraising plan together sooner rather than later!

The first thing that caused me a bit of alarm about his email was that he was using the terms “philanthropy” and “investing” interchangeably. Continue reading “How to evaluate a fundraising opportunity”

Nonprofit fundraising with Kishshana Palmer


I recently worked with Kishshana Palmer, an experienced non-profit executive and consultant, to produce what was possibly the most engaging nonprofit fundraising education session I’ve ever had the pleasure of witnessing. Check out fundraising for nonprofits on Xero U!

Kishshana not only knows what she’s talking about — she’s a Certified Fundraising Executive who has helped organizations raise over 35 million dollars collectively — she’s also a wonderfully engaging person to listen to. I found myself laughing and nodding in both agreement and self-awareness, in much the same way that I might at a good comedy show, dharma talk, or author event.

“She totally GETS it,” I kept thinking to myself, remembering how I used to feel (ie, not awesome) when trying to raise money for my own nonprofit organization, Finance for Food.

Don’t wait to apply Kishshana’s insights and action items to your own nonprofit fundraising efforts; check out Fundraising for nonprofits on Xero U!