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Two Part Invention

Madeleine L’Engle

“Perhaps the most important thing I learned is that the artist is not separate from the work and therefore cannot judge it. Some nights Miss Le Gallienne would come drooping back to the dressing room. ‘I gave a terrible performance this evening. I couldn’t get the audience to respond to a thing.’ Almost invariably when people came backstage after such a declaration, an old friend would cry out enthusiastically, ‘Eva, that was the best performance I’ve ever seen you give. You were superb.’

On other evenings she would come bounding in. ‘Oh, it went well tonight! I had them eating out of the palm of my hand!”‘ Almost invariably Thelma, the stage manager, who was an old friend from the Civic Repertory Days, would knock on the door, poke her head in, and ask anxiously, ‘LeG, are you all right?’

We do not know and cannot tell when the spirit is with us. Great talent or small, it makes no difference. We are caught within our own skins, our own sensibilities; we never know if our technique has been adequate to the vision.”

—Madeleine L’Engle, Two Part Invention

Nice to meet you! I'm a writer, reader, and aspiring hermit. I love books and food and plants and theater and I'm fascinated by the beauty and terror of being alive on this planet.

In my past life, I was a founder at various times and a CEO at various times, and I now make a living as co-founder and chief of staff at a web3 startup. I do some coaching and consulting on organizational alignment & leadership occasionally (if that's something you need, you can email me; I have loads of empathy for anyone trying to make a business work).

I invented a celebratory day called Post Day that happens from time to time. Anyone can celebrate! I write letters to books I have loved. I also talk to my books on Twitter, and sometimes they talk back.

I have a mailing list, where I share the occasional update about new things I'm making/trying. If you're interested in digital gardening, I share what I'm reading in my public Roam. I am on Twitter sometimes, or you can email me.

If you like reading about thoughtful business topics, you can read my first book, Gather the People, originally released in 2015 and updated in 2020. It was the book I needed as a bootstrapping business owner with the heart of an artist, and if that's you, I hope it helps.

Last updated: July 26, 2022