Karen.E.Buck

What’s on my mind

Wow! Where went January?

February 1, 2013

Greetings, earthlings.

I have been on planet computer, where there are no time/space boundaries. Actually, I’ve been caught in a West Coast client time/space continuum, where meetings last until 8 CST. Someday I’ll learn.

Other January activities included a day trip to Houston to do some CMS implementation planning, a kickoff with (another) Los Angeles client on a website redesign and a visit to Chicago to be a beach bum in January (stay tuned for more on that this spring).

My first independent project — for Cajun Spirits Distillery here in New Orleans — also officially launched in January. I worked with EtkinDesignStudio on information architecture and copywriting to launch this new brand. Cheers and best wishes to Gus Haik on this new endeavor.

Next up in February — Mardi Gras and the relaunch for Beyond Nines. If I can make it to the 12th I’ll be very happy indeed!

Puppies and cupcakes

December 11, 2012

In case you’ve interpreted my social-media critiques for sour grapes, here are some things I love or that have earned my respect, in alphabetical order!

    • Bacchanal
    • Bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwiches, all summer long
    • Birdcages
    • Dirty Coast t-shirts
    • Doc Martin on Hulu
    • Doctor Brommer’s peppermint soap
    • Having enough time to cook dinner
    • Flea markets
    • Frank Family Vineyards cabernet
    • Karmann Ghias, and buying cars on Ebay
    • Gawker (or the old Gawker)
    • Pickles of all kinds
    • Small plates
    • The New Yorker, though they pile up
    • Mt. Tam cheese
    • Sparkling wine, be it cava, prosecco, rosé or other
    • Velvet Espresso Bar, with their yummy Intelligentsia coffee and tiny cupcakes
    • Weimaraners, especially puppies
    • Writing that illuminates the topic, not the writer

    Hard-hitting thoughts, I know. Have a good weekend.

The social agenda

November 16, 2012

I have a love-hate relationship with social media in the professional space.

I love it. I have to. I need to keep on top of its evolution. To see how people are using the tools, and to see where the trends are headed. The constant, current flow of information excites me. What a great way to stay plugged in and informed.

I hate it. Who wouldn’t? There are all these “conversations” happening that seem scripted and calculated. Players who I know have off-line relationships run

make money easy home

fake conversations for the benefit of those who follow them. They’re not talking to each other, they’re talking to us. Fawning praise meant to ingratiate. LinkedIn endorsements that plea for a return.

What’s supposed to be authentic feels even more fake than a billboard.

Me? I stick with what I know works best (or to be more truthful, the only thing I know): I say what I think. Sometimes I’m wildly inappropriate. Always highly critical. And always part of the conversation.

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Thriving on fear

November 2, 2012

It’s the Friday confessional hour.

I’m doing a little procrastinating before a 11 a.m. meeting. There’s something I should be working on (always is), but I met a major deadline yesterday and I’m feeling I earned the right to not work on the onerous task before me.

Before yesterday’s deadline, though, I was not feeling the same divine right to do whatever. I was living in fear. I had a nagging fear that the client would hate what I did. That I’d have to explain why I had offered such incomplete, sub-par thinking.

That’s pretty much how I roll, with a constant belief that what I’m doing is not good enough.

I like to believe that this sense of dread, this feeling of “I’m faking it” is actually what makes my work stronger. If I thought I was god’s gift to marketing communications, I’d probably just rehash the same old, same old whatever.

But is my fear pushing me forward or holding me back?

For a great exploration on this topic, check out Sarah Bee Nelson's examination of the Imposter Syndrome. She sent out the post with the subject line “Found out! You are a Fake and a Fraud!” That got some attention in my inbox.

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3… 2… 1… Liftoff!

October 19, 2012

I’m very excited to launch this new website. As those of you who saw the interim karenebuck.com effort already know, this is an incredible improvement!

Thanks to the talented and capable Erin Allen for getting the designs cleaned up, coded and into trusty-old-Wordpress.

Now let’s see what the future holds.

Hearing the cold, hard truth

July 30, 2012

I’m known for being matter-the-fact, straightforward, some might say “cold.” I prefer Midwestern.

Such a personality needs to take what she dishes out, don’t you think?

So when I went to lunch with my friend and colleague Maria (a talented creative and designer who you should check out at www.mariaketkind.com), I had to laugh when she said What is up with your website?

I did a little defensive dance and told her that right now, I’m really not marketing myself to the public, that those who might look at this train wreck already knew me and my work.

But she’s right. This website is pathetic.

Working on it, ‘k?

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Exciting day! Officially in business!

July 17, 2012

Today was a surprising day.

I went down to the Clerk of Court to file my local trade name papers there so that I could then go to the bank and open a business account.

I had mentally prepared myself for entrapment. For a rabbit hole of unforeseen tasks and requirements. There was no information online about how to file other than where to go.

I exited the elevator on the fifth floor and encountered helpful people with friendly faces. They alerted me to one snag: Contrary to what the woman on the telephone told me, I did need the filing notarized.

Luckily, I am friendly with two notaries, so I dashed over to one of their offices and got everything in order.

Back to the clerk’s office. Twenty minutes and $65 later (including a mysterious $15 new building fee) all was completed.

NOLA, you might be changing for the better. But don’t change too much. It’s all part of the charm.