I can’t wait to leave for Portland tomorrow for that city’s instalment of the Hello Etsy conference. The main conference is in Berlin this weekend, and several American cities are hosting their own creative small-business conference at the same time. I was very excited and flattered to have been invited to pitch a session for the Portland event, and even more so to have that pitch accepted.

If you’re attending the Portland conference, I hope to see you in my session! We’ll be talking about the ugly side of business. Where “ugly” is totally subjective, as always. Translated into normal human terms, we’ll talk about why it’s important not to ignore, avoid or otherwise shove away the challenging, frightening, downright daunting parts of launching or running a creative business.

Another reason I’m beside myself about this conference? A couple of weeks ago I discovered that Bill McKibben, author and environmentalist, is the keynote speaker at the Berlin conference. His book, Deep Economy, blew my mind when I read it a few years ago*.

Owen and I dug through our disorganized piles of books this morning because I want to take my copy on the train tomorrow. I wish every conference attendee would read this book. Wait. No. I wish everyone, period, would read this book. It takes everything I find offensive about economics and makes it human, realistic, hopeful and inspiring. McKibben is the perfect person to address the issues of small, locally focused business sustainability.

See you in Portland?

* I was reading Deep Economy during a photo shoot for Interweave Crochet. If you look closely, you may see it in one or two shots in the Winter 2007 issue.

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