Oh, Seth Godin. Your book Linchpin is ruling my life right now.
"An artist ships."
This idea seems simple enough. It could be a DUH statement. Not a difficult concept to wrap your head around.
But then you analyze it a little bit more. "An artist ships." Okay, so what does that mean, exactly? Are you not an artist if you don't ship? Is shipping the most important part of being an artist? Do the shipments need to be successful or does the mere act of shipping denote success? Does the fact that I use multi-syllabic words and the Socratic Method expose me as an intellectual who enjoys the sight of his own typing...?
"An artist ships." You devise a project, set a deadline, initiate, tweak, analyze, tweak, retool, finish, and ship. Regardless of whether it's a success or a failure (and in reality, doesn't everything that we do contain varying degrees of success and failure?), you are an artist. Once you finish the project, you are no longer on the sidelines. You are a part of the game. People read your business book and decide whether or not the ideas and arguments are valid. Web-surfers peruse your blog and subscribe or hit the back button, relegating it to internet anonymity. Forward thinkers mentally ingest your manifesto and spread it like a virus throughout their tribes or leave it to die a slow and forgettable death. Audiophiles listen to your song and rush to download the mp3 or flame you on twitter.
"An artist ships." And learns. What works, what doesn't work, how to do it more efficiently, where her weaknesses are, what strengths she can depend on, what ultimately leaves her fulfilled and proud and chomping at the bit to ship again.
"An artist ships." Duuuhhhhhhh...
I'll be shipping with Oh Girl next Monday night. And I can't wait to be an artist again...