rsbpub

Becky Blanton

Becky Blanton is using this blog to promote her submission for Lesson Seven of the Johnny Bunko contest because, like Martin, Megan and all the folks we link to here, know that staying hungry is the most important thing an artist can do for himself to help him get ahead. It applies to anyone (not just crazed zombie illustrators, cartooners of fish, writers, heart surgeons who want to save the world and members of Triiibes.com) and it’s less obvious (and less safe) than the other options. If you stay hungry, you keep striving, keep working for more, keep creating, keep moving forward. If you stay hungry, you cover more ground — you grow faster.

Becky is the hungry writer behind half a dozen blogs, from “ObservationsFromTheEdge” to WhyNowWhyNot” and her professional site, “rsbpublishing.com” to “TheCorporateGarage.com.”

Obcessed, well, really passionate about camping and travel and a former full-time RV’er, she lived in a 1975 Chevy Van in Denver, CO in 2006-2007 for a year. She had company – her Rottweiler and cat. In the winter of 2007 she fled the sort of snows that made “The Shining” (filmed in Colorado) such a kick-ass scary movie and moved back east where she spent nearly another year in the van and couch-suring at friend’s houses – trying to finish her book.

Before the eastern exodus, while the snow was falling in the spring of 2006 in the Rockies, Senior Vice President of NBC News, Tim Russert, was making the rounds with his new book, “Wisdom of Our Fathers, Letters from Sons & Daughters.” Becky’s essay (chosen from more than 60,000 entries) on forgiveness is on page 141 of Tim’s  NYTimes best-seller.

Backstory: Her father was terminally ill and died the day before the book went to press. After not speaking for more than 15 years, Becky contacted him after hearing about his stage-four, terminal brain tumor. Over the next few months they reconciled. He died Feb. 6, 2006 after hearing her essay was to be in Tim’s book. He never got to read it. Shortly after her father’s death, she left her relatively new position as a newspaper editor at a Colorado and moved into a van to pursue freelance photography and to finish the book she started about her relationship with her father and their reconciliation.

What was to become a “Great Adventure,” traveling, writing, camping and freelancing,” turned into more than a year of homelessness and living her van with her Rottweiler and a house cat. Yahoo, and their now defunct show, “Hook Me Up,” came to the rescue after she entered a contest, asking for help to get her photos online. Yahoo kicked in a MacBook (which still doesn’t work quite right EVER, but she loves it when it does); a Treo cellphone and a bunch of cool stuff for the cause. What might have been the clincher was when Yahoo’s producers asked her if the van had a “security system” and she said “Yeah. My Rottweiler.” (Dear animal activists. The dog stayed in doggie daycare with PetSmart or with friends on hot days and had the run of a 6×12 foot insulated van with a bed, food, water, twin bed and her cat buddy when the weather was nice).

Smugmug.com, the most awesome and incredible photohost in the world, kicked in a lifetime membership to their site so she could post her photos. THANKS CHRIS!!! I LOVE YOU!! And, things, in spite of the old, creaky, leaky van (which she STILL drives) were pretty good. She DEFINITELY has learned to stay hungry. She recently applied to Seth Godin’s !MBA alternative program, and wasn’t selected, but Seth was kind enough to say she was “way overqualified,” for the position. Thank you Seth. Seth, by the way, had NOTHING to do with this blog. He just inspired all of us connected to it!


Just a few of Becky’s awesome projects:

Okay, since a lot of her projects are ghost written, she can’t name them here.
But you CAN view her list of completed projects and portfolio at:

  • RSBPublishing.com
  • SIPSofAmerica.com She designed the site, wrote the copy
  • ObservationsFromTheEdge
  • Her manifesto about “Creativity” (entitled, “Hammers, Cats & Duct Tape”) was recently selected to be published by ChangeThis.com.
  • A bunch of newspaper awards, a couple from Washington State, Kentucky, and Tennessee, including one in 2007 from The Society of Professional Journalists (1st Place!) for a series of articles she wrote on the death, homecoming and funeral of a Lenoir City Marine two weeks before he was due to leave Iraq for good.

Let me repeat, Becky is using this blog to promote her submission for Lesson Seven of the Johnny Bunko contest because, like Martin, Megan and all the folks we link to here, know that staying hungry is the most important thing an artist can do for himself to help him get ahead. It applies to anyone (not just crazed zombie illustrators, cartooners of fish, writers, heart surgeons who want to save the world and members of Triiibes.com) and it’s less obvious (and less safe) than the other options. If you stay hungry, you keep striving, keep working for more, keep creating, keep moving forward. If you stay hungry, you cover more ground — you grow faster.

She’s certainly “Stayed Hungry,” pursuing a variety of careers over the years in addition to journalism. She stayed with journalism for 22 of her 50+ years, and intends to continue to pursue a writing career. She’s currently working on three books, including a business book, a spy/thriller and a how-to-live in your car book – for those who are forced into really staying hungry – and not by choice.

What Does The Immediate Future Hold?

In the Spring of 2009 – she’ll begin an RV adventure of a different sort: Traveling to rural areas across the U.S., teaching basic internet, blogging and vlogging skills to small businesses. She’s still looking for sponsors – and an RV if you’re interested in making a difference to the small mom and pop’s in America. Go to “The Corporate Garage” for more info.

She really, really, really, really, really wants you to vote for the BEST answer – the one your heart TELLS you to. She hopes you understand “Stay Hungry” is a matter of the heart. Now – GO VOTE!!

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  1. Hi, Becky,
    After two days of Christmas festivities with family, I’m officially, no longer hungry. Just kiddin’.
    I’m intrigued by the story of the reconciliation that you had with your dad. I look forward to reading it someday. My JB 7th is Say, Thanks, Every Day. One of the things that became my offering to Dan was the realization that what every we achieve in life happens to a large degree because of others providing some open door, some word or encouragement or some other assistance that made a difference. That human connection is much more than some throw away word of Thanks. I’m trying to wrap my head around a idea that has far more depth to it that I first realized several months ago. Becoming a JB finalist was totally unexpected, however, I’m learning a lot about creating a revolution in thanks and welcome.
    Thanks for commenting at my blog. I’ll subscribe to yours and look forward to getting hungry again for new ideas and opportunities.
    Hope we can meet some day.
    All the best,
    Ed

  2. Great blog, Becky, but I know you bring greatness to any project you’re connected with. I hope to be added to your list of “hungry” people. I have a lot of plans for 2009, and it’s going to be a long road.

    Best wishes to you as you pursue this path.

    Happy 2009!

    Bette

  3. Becky, great post on my philosophy page. I absolutely love the term “Stay Hungry”. I believe it is a term you must live by, especially as an artist and an entrepreneur. I actually have checked out Seth’s ebook triibes and that’s awesome that you’re an author in it. Seth Godin is a genius and I’m all about everything he does. I’m not sure if you’ve checked out this website but it has all of Seth Godin’s ebooks for free which is a very valuable asset for anyone, http://www.squidoo.com/Seth-Godin-ebooks-. Good luck with everything you’re pursuing.

  4. […] close until tomorrow) but I’m pretty damn proud of us. I have had such a FUN week! Becky and Marty, who worked their asses off, and the folks who helped us out, and the Triiibe that got […]

  5. […] have selected “Stay hungry” as the 7th Johnny Bunko Lesson. Congratulations to Becky Blanton of Danville, Virginia, who surged from behind in the last week to win a resounding victory. Her […]

  6. I believe the old saying is,”You can choose your friends, but family, you’re kinda’ stuck with…” or something along those lines. Well, I’ve been “stuck with” Becky now for almost 50-years, and am compelled to say I could not be more proud of her for this accomplishment above and beyond all the other awards and acknowledgements she has received over the years. There is much about Becky that most of you will never know, not that it matters, but as her brother, I shared many of the early challenges we experienced growing up, and I can tell you, it wasn’t even remotely easy. Aside from her genius IQ, her unique perspective on the world, her limitless imagination, and her sheer passion for her work, Becky is a beautiful person and the best sibling anyone could ever hope for in this life. Congratulations, Sis! You deserve it!

  7. Hi Becky – as you have now contributed the official seventh Bunko lesson, I’m adding “stay hungry” to the presentations I make to high school students, parents, career counselors and, well, whoever else will listen in our community. I know this will be a valuable lesson to the youth who are preparing to take their next big step in life.

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