For those of you who don’t know, my name is Alisa Starr. And I make Snarky Cards: Brutally Honest Greeting Cards. I sell them in bars from a box that hangs beneath my boobs.
I’m sorry I haven’t been writing to you regularly. My website filled up. And I had to switch to a larger package. Or buy a bigger package and then move shit from one package to another thing. Clearly, this required tech skills I don’t have, and my friend Arlette, the tech-wiz has finally gotten a little too busy to be at my beck and call, web-work wise. She’s still an ace best friend, but your friends can only give you free professional help for so long. And she lasted longer than everyone else. Three years is a long time of super-help. And I’m happy that finally her career and her personal life are soaring, and so she doesn’t have enough time for a Snarky Cards website hobby.
Since I started Snarky Cards, it’s come first. And nothing has been able to move me from that. Everything else in my life revolves around the cards. And the cards have given me my friends, my bars, my place in Portland, some fame, a tattoo, and a sense of confidence I’ve never had before. And they made me a writer. Which is my biggest point of pride. I’ve always wanted to be a writer. Ever since I was a little girl. This having-a-dream thing might sound amazing to those of you who are aimlessly wandering through life, wondering what they should be doing with themselves. But it’s kind of a pain in the ass. It makes me extraordinarily single-minded.
When I hang out with my friends, 40% of my brain is thinking/worrying/planning more Snarky Card Shit. When I watch tv, I’m making cards, or making plans. When I’m shopping, I’m thinking about what to buy for Snarky Cards. But even with all this thinking, and concentrating, there’s a lot of shit I can’t do. There’s too much work. And only one of me. And I have a limited set of skills.
So, I’ve been needing help for a while. I’ve talked about getting interns, but I hadn’t seriously looked for one yet. I managed people, a long time ago, in my bookseller days. And it was hard. But more importantly, I’m pretty sure that I was terrible at it. And I made life harder for the people I was in charge of. I never could figure out how to be the kind of boss that I wanted to be. I had the best bosses in the world at Brentano’s: Stacy and Glenn. And I could never figure out how to bridge the gap between my behavior and theirs. What I came up with seemed kind of paltry. So, I vowed never to do that again. Which is why I’d been dragging my feet finding this intern.
You’ll recall that I talked about this whole intern idea in one of my earlier posts. After Christmas I admitted to myself, and to you, Dear Internets, that I needed help building my little empire. But I hadn’t gone All Alisa On That Shit yet. See, when I decide to do something, nothing stops me. Which is why I waffle on deciding things. I test ideas out. I plan out things I may not go through with. But once I’m full-on in, I’m relentless. Which might be why I’ve sold 38,715 Snarky Cards since I started.
So, I took snarfed a lot of hot sex, and armed with my ardor, I started talking about getting an intern CONSTANTLY. I put an ad on Craigslist. An ad which I reposted no less than 4 times. Craigslist tore it down. A lot. Because apparently, they hate me. But I POSTED IT. And I posted an ad on the PNCA website. And I talked about looking for interns at the bars, and with my friends, and I started to make a list of things I would need my interns to do.
Enter Grant. Grant is a fucking godsend. He is friends with Claire. And he said “I have a lot of free time on my hands. I could help you out for a while. And it would give me something to do every day.” So, he started coming over to help me with Snarky Cards. And he is, like, psychotically talented. He found me an accounting system, taught me to use it, and then he typed up my master list of cards. He figured out how to set up wi-fi in the apartment. He helped me create records for my retailers in the accounting system. He has gone to pick up money, and drop off new cards, he helped me fix my website, and now he’s helping me revamp it. He came up with this rack that I can use to dry cards, so that they’re not littering every surface of the apartment. He listens when I talk.
He is kind, and serious and funny and he has come over to help me work on Snarky Cards for 40 hours a week, every week for the last month. He helped me reorganize my living room so that we can find shit in it. And I find that the more I explain things to Grant, the better I am at figuring out what parts of my business I need to change.
Like in most things, I find out more about myself when I explain me to someone else. It’s part of what makes me such an earnest and confessional writer. It’s why I like to do things not just for me, but for the good of other people I know. Because then I have to explain shit to them, and in explaining shit to them, I explain it to me.
It still amazes me that someone so talented would be helping me without pay. But I do my best to admire gift-horses from a distance. Not wanting to see flaws before I get my free ride.
And so far, I think I’m the kind of boss that I want. I bring him coffee. We tell each other about our lives. I respect his time. And I try to make sure that he knows I’m in awe of his talent. And I try to believe that while I might have been a shitty boss in the past, all of the good things I saw Stacy and Glenn do are still in my head. And I may not have been good at imitating them in the past. But maybe I’ve grown enough that I can be good at those things now.
So, I’m writing to you now, because Grant is a genius. And he made my website bigger. And he’s doing a lot of other amazing stuff that is making it easier for me to bring you more Snarky Cards and underwear, and posters. Do not fear, Dear Internets. The Snarky Empire is being built. Soon, I will be able to offer you all kinds of Snarky Shit. Thanks to Grant The Amazing. And to celebrate Grants awesomeness, I’m offering 20% off your Snarky Cards! Go to http://snarkycards.etsy.com and enter coupon code: alisaheartsinterns to get your discount!