Episode 157 – Cindy Mich
Welcome to another episode of The HERO Show. I am your host Richard Matthews, (@AKATheAlchemist) and you are listening to Episode 157 with Cindy Mich – Keeping The Art of Attention & Appreciation Alive.
Cindy Mich is an active media personality and award-winning journalist. She contributes to a cluster of online and offline platforms, and her radio shows, Cin’s Chat Corner and Sons Spotlight, hold a total of 95,000 listeners spread across twenty states with a 12% international following.
Cindy prides herself on providing interesting and intriguing interviews on and off red carpets. For her, every interviewee is a celebrity. She also has one feature film and two documentaries due to be released in the next three years.
And she doesn’t stop there! Cindy has also taught creative writing, broadcasting, and publishing — both in the public and private sector — and has acted as a professional model in the past. She is also the founder and fueling force behind the NYC-based independent film festival, Art is Alive. Now in its fifth year!
Cindy is often asked to act as a film judge for a variety of fellow festivals, including the illustrious AFI this year. For the future, Cindy is intending to build an independent television streaming network, CIN TV, focused on streaming artistic projects of all types.
Here’s just a taste of what we talked about today:
- Cindy Mich joins us all the way from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. A place that reminds me of my first non-Californian friend who used to make me laugh because of the way he says things and a funny memory about the ice scraper.
- First, Cindy shared what she does in her business and the services she provides to her clients. At Art is Alive, Cindy covers stories that she finds interesting, inspirational, and entertaining. Most people that she works with are artists, authors, nonprofits, charities, and small businesses.
- Then, we talked about the quantity of Cindy’s magazine in terms of digital distribution versus old-school distribution.
- We moved further to the conversation to talk about her origin story. A combination of passion in writing and the sadder things of life made Cindy the person that she is today.
- Also asked Cindy’s thoughts about passion, and unpacked a theory of mine I call “Mastery Begets Passion.”
- Next, we talked about Cindy’s superpowers. What is the common thread that energizes all of her other skills? It is the ability to lift someone up even from the darkest places, and Cindy talks more about that in detail.
- Cindy shared her thoughts about the weight of responsibility as someone that people look up to and listen to.
- Then, we talked about the flip side of Cindy’s superpower — her fatal flaw. Two of the things that she struggled with are, taking things personally and procrastination. By learning that she cannot ingest everything and setting up a system made her overcome these flaws.
- Lastly, we talked about Cindy’s driving force at Art is Alive. She fights to preserve any form of art and keep it alive for people all over the country.
- Pen & paper
- An innate sense of passion
- Picture of her loved ones
Cindy mentioned the following book/s on the show.
- Smart Women by Judy Blume
The HERO Challenge
Today on the show, Cindy Mich challenged MJ Pedone to be a guest on The HERO Show. Cindy thinks that MJ is a fantastic person to interview because she is a publicist and owns a business and is just so brilliant with her clients. She could be in the worst predicament possible. but she’s tough as nails. She’s definitely one of my icons, someone I always look up to.
How To Stay Connected with Cindy Mich
Want to stay connected with Cindy? Please check out their social profiles below.
- Website: TheArtIsAliveMagazine.com
- Radio Show: Blogtalkradio.com/Cins-Chat-Corner
- Facebook: Facebook.com/Cindy.Mich.1
- Instagram: Instagram.com/Mich.Cindy
- LinkedIn: Linkedin.com/in/Cindy-Mich-6328552b
With that… let’s go and listen to the full episode…
Cindy Mich 0:00
I do think passion is something that comes and goes meaning that there are points in my life where Yes, undoubtedly writing is my passion. I know this for a fact. However, sometimes you get exhausted with your own passion. If I’m doing it too many days in a row, I’m not as passionate about it, per se. So it’s sort of something that ignites like you mentioned the mastery effect. I mean, I think I’m as good as I’m gonna get in terms of writing perspective. But now I don’t write as much as I used to. So the passion comes from in part sneaking it in. I know that may not make sense, but it’s true. A lot of times I edit or I’m screening films, or I don’t get to write as much as I used to. So part of the passion comes from being able to get excited about the fact that I’m getting to do something. On the other side of the fence. I think passion is also rooted from whatever it is that touches your heart.
Richard Matthews 0:49
Heroes are an inspiring group of people, every one of them from the larger than life comic book heroes you see on the big silver screen, the everyday heroes that let us live the privileged lives we do. Every hero has a story to tell, the doctor saving lives at your local hospital, the war veteran down the street, who risked his life for our freedom to the police officers, and the firefighters who risked their safety to ensure ours, every hero is special and every story worth telling. But there was one class of heroes that I think is often ignored the entrepreneur, the creator, the producer, the ones who look at the problems in this world and think to themselves, you know what I can fix that I can help people I can make a difference. And they go out and do exactly that by creating a new product or introducing a new service. Some go on to change the world, others make a world of difference to their customers. Welcome to the Hero Show. Join us as we pull back the masks on the world’s finest hero preneurs and learn the secrets to their powers, their success and their influence. So you can use those secrets to attract more sales, make more money and experience more freedom in your business. I’m your host, Richard Matthews, and we are on in 3…2…1…
Richard Matthews 1:44
Hello, and welcome back to the Hero Show. My name is Richard Matthews. And today I have the pleasure of having Cindy Mich on the line. Cindy, are you there?
Cindy Mich 1:51
Richard Matthews 1:53
Awesome. So where are you calling in from today, Cindy?
Cindy Mich 1:56
I am in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, which is pretty rare these days because I travel so much. But yes, a Midwestern girl is in her living room. excited for the show.
Richard Matthews 2:04
So my first question for you. Are you a native of Wisconsin?
Cindy Mich 2:09
I am sorry to say I shouldn’t say that. I absolutely love Wisconsin, yep born and raised here. I’ve been here my whole life.
Richard Matthews 2:15
My first college roommate was from Wisconsin. And he cracked me up because I’d never been out of Southern California. And we met in college. And he is my first non Californian friend. And he used to say things that cracked me up, he would say, the bag and the flag in the tag. Like all those things. Because the Wisconsin dialect doesn’t really make the “A” sound, the rest of the country is used to it’s all an “E” sound. Do you do that yourself?
Cindy Mich 2:46
No, actually, I can’t say that I do. Behind the truth. I’ve been to New York so much that I’m probably starting to get their New York accent. I’m changing.
Richard Matthews 2:52
So your accent, yeah. And then the other funny thing that happened meeting my first Wisconsin person is, we were in college. And it was right before winter started. And he asks me if I’m prepared for winter. And I said, Of course, I’m prepared for winter, I went to the store in California before we came out here and I got an ice-scraper. And I got a jacket. And he’s like, let me see your ice scraper and I pull up my ice scraper, which in California is basically a credit card with the handle. It’s like, two by three with a little tiny handle and you put in everything, occasionally you get a little frost in the morning and it takes two seconds to scrape off kind of thing. And he laughed at me, he laughed at me for like a week, every time he looked at me. And he comes back from the store one day and he brings me an ice scraper, a real one. And it’s three feet long. And it’s got a big metal claw on one end and a big brush on the other end. He’s like, take this, put it in your car, and I was like, wtf is that? He was like, this is a real ice scraper and I promise you’re going to need it.
Cindy Mich 3:52
Oh, yes, yes.
Richard Matthews 3:54
We were in Missouri but the first snowstorm we had, I was very appreciative that he bought me a real ice scraper cuz I never would have come by with my little credit card.
Cindy Mich 4:04
There you go.
Richard Matthews 4:06
California boy not prepared for winter. So what I want to do before we get too far into the interview is a quick introduction for you. So you are the founder of the Art is Alive magazine. Is that right?
Cindy Mich 4:19
That is correct. Yes.
Richard Matthews 4:21
And to start off the show, why don’t you tell us a little bit about what you guys do at the Art is Alive and who you serve, what your products and services are? That kind of stuff.
Cindy Mich 4:30
Okay, gotcha. Well, the art is alive magazine is the most recent event show that I’ve done. I’ve been a journalist for probably three-quarters of my life, from the age of 15 on. So I do almost anything and everything that allows me to write so the magazine itself is kind of a culmination of it started the art is live Film Festival I wrote for various newspapers and magazines for years. And then eventually I decided that I wanted to write whatever I wanted and I wanted to showcase whoever I chose. So most of the time, all the people I work with are entertainment-based or artis based, actors, authors, nonprofits, charities, small businesses. So basically, you could say that I have a heart for the little guy, anybody who’s indie. And of course, I’m on the celebrity side now too, I’ll cover if I find them interesting or inspirational or entertaining.
Richard Matthews 5:17
Nice. And so how long have you been running the art is alive magazine?
Cindy Mich 5:21
Well, we’re a little over a year now. And so it’s been exciting and exhausting. I have to tell you this issue. I think I’m writing half of the magazine, which tends to happen sometimes because it’s tough. It’s hard to solicit and find writers you have writers that come and go, that’s part of the mystique of my magazine is that we have newbies that come in, sometimes no publications under their belts. I publish them for the first time they move on somebody new comes in. So it’s kind of neat watching the fluxation and trying to see where we’re going to end up fairing is interesting to me.
Richard Matthews 5:52
Yeah, so just from a digital perspective, how much digital distribution versus old-school distribution do you have for your magazine nowadays?
Cindy Mich 6:03
Well, to be honest with you, surprisingly, we have a good number of subscribers now, we have about 6300 a month that read the magazine, and I’ve done eight issues so far. So that’s not too terribly bad. In print, I’d like to see it higher. That’s the hard part, I haven’t really had enough time to do a formal event where you print out 1000s of copies and sell them because I usually tie events to my other entities. So right now, the digital is doing really well, I’m guessing that’s probably because we’ve been in quarantine and a pandemic going on, etc. So my hope is to build up the print version because I’m old school, I still read a newspaper, I still buy a magazine, I want print media to succeed.
Richard Matthews 6:44
So what’s your percentage of print versus digital right now?
Cindy Mich 6:49
Oh, God. So clearly, it’s like 80/20 right now, which is sad for me. I mean, I keep trying.
Richard Matthews 6:54
You’d like it to better like 50/50
Cindy Mich 6:56
Oh, you betcha. And there’s no lying about that. I mean, it’s more expensive to print. Obviously, there’s online, there’s not a lot of costs involved with hosting, etc. But I want to take the cost on, if that makes sense to you, I would prefer to print out a magazine. I like the look of it. I like the feel of it. I like people having coffee and reading it, that sort of thing. I mean, I’ll take a read one way or the other, as long as they’re reading it. As long as 6000 people are seeing it. I’m happy.
Richard Matthews 7:20
Yeah, that’s really cool. So I want to start with how you got into this whole business. We call it the origin story. Every good comic book hero has an origin story, something that made them into the hero they are today. And we want to hear your story. Were you born a hero? Are you bit by a radioactive spider that made you want to get into journalism? Where did you start in a job and eventually moved to become an entrepreneur? Basically, we want to know where you came from?
Cindy Mich 7:44
Well, you know, I hate to say it, but some of us heroes come from the darkest of circumstances. In fact, oftentimes, tragedy befalls us. And so this particular hero came from lots of tragedy at a young age. And I think that kind of changes you and makes you very tough on the inside, to begin with, and then you kind of warm thereafter. So hopefully, you can figure out who my superhero is, it’s pretty evident if you know me. So I kind of came from that background where things are very limited and very hard from the get go. So as a child, I decided I wanted to be an artist. So then I used to draw all the time. And then I realized I was really bad at it. So at some point, I looked in the mirror at about eight, nine years of age and said, Okay, so I can’t draw spiders for the rest of my life. What can I do to try to feel better about myself and to try to help the world around me, I started writing. And then at age 15, I won my first award. And then out of high school, I decided I was going to go to journalism school never finished, but eventually became a journalist. So I mean, my starts came from very dark places, and I think that sometimes going back to those dark places was inevitable, but it makes me a much better, much stronger, much more effective writer.
Richard Matthews 8:54
So, you had some issues in the past that helped you get into journalism. So my question then is, how did you go from I’m going to be a writer to I want to do film and run my own magazines and actually become an entrepreneur?
Cindy Mich 9:12
Well, I think what happens is over time, at least in my particular case, when you have tragedies or very difficult things in life, you try to find something that’s a soloist to you. For me personally, I think what happens is, whenever I write anything, I get that tingle in my tummy, which is what we call passion. And that means I know exactly what I’m doing. And then I’m thrilled by doing it. And not only that the effect and the impact that I’ve heard that I have with my words is profound. So oftentimes in the darkest of circumstances, I end up writing pieces or delving very given to my passion, and it’s sort of a rescue for me, so to speak. So I’m kind of a hero that gets rescued by her own passion and then, in turn, takes that passion and rescues other people, if that makes sense to you. But the reality of the situation is that these very dark places kind of forced me to have to find something to escape to otherwise, I pretty much would be in a loony bin, so to speak. So I built a very big career sort of to shield me from some of the sadder things of life.
Richard Matthews 10:14
That makes sense. So I have a question for you, that’s sort of based around the passion thing, and it’s a theory I have. And I just want to get your thoughts on it. So my theory has to do with passion. And a lot of people think that passion is something that you are born with. And I sort of have a contention that passion is something you develop via mastery. So my theory is that mastery begets passion. And the better you get at something, the more passionate you become about it. And I’ve noticed that with my children in my own life, that as things that I get, as I sort of stack the skills, so to speak in an area, I get more passionate about that. And I’m just curious, what are your thoughts on that?
Cindy Mich 11:03
I think I would tend to concur with you to some degree. I mean, I do think passion is something that comes and goes. Meaning that there are points in my life, where yes, undoubtedly writing is my passion. I know this for a fact. However, sometimes you get exhausted with your own passion. If I’m doing it too many days in a row, I’m not as passionate about it, per se. So it’s sort of something that ignites as you mentioned, the mastery effect. I mean, I think I’m as good as I’m gonna get in terms of writing perspective. But now I don’t write as much as I used to. So the passion comes from in part sneaking it in. I know that may not make sense. But it’s true. A lot of times I edit or I’m screening films, or I don’t get to write as much as I used to. So part of the passion comes from being able to get excited about the fact that I’m getting to do something. On the other side of the fence. I think passion is also rooted in whatever it is that touches your heart. If you walk away from something where you’re like, oh, and you’ve got those goosebumps, for whatever reason, it could be your kids, it could be a life moving experience, I was visited by a ghost not so long ago. So now I’ve become somewhat passionate about trying to figure out if somebody is trying to say something to me, or telling me something, or whatever. So I think you’re at least 50%, right. And that, the better you get at something, especially something you love, the passion grows and grows and grows. However, at my old age, now I’m coming to learn that you can grow new passions based upon new things and kind of go in new directions, all of a sudden, you realize, Hmm, I could grow to be passionate about this, too. So I’m probably going to be an 80 year old hippie who is now passionate about 75 things. Make sense?
Richard Matthews 12:36
I’m in the same boat, maybe not in the age category yet. But I’m constantly in the sort of the process of like, I wonder if I could learn how to do that thing. And start some of it sometimes you realize, hey, I’m not gonna be good at this. And it’s hard. And other times you’re like, I’ve got a knack for this and you start doing it and getting better at it and the better you get at it, the more passionate you get about it. And it’s sort of how you develop extracurricular hobbies, so to speak.
Cindy Mich 13:03
Lots of extracurricular hobbies sometimes. But you know what, girls are important. I think as you age, growing, and expanding out your interests and your knowledge level is important, so nothing wrong with that.
Richard Matthews 13:13
So I want to talk a little bit about your superpowers, which I think you might have hinted at a little bit already. But every iconic hero has a superpower, whether that’s a fancy flying suit made by a genius intellect, or the ability to call down Thunder from the sky, or super strength or something. In the real world, heroes have what I call a zone of genius, which is either a skill or a set of skills that you were either born with you developed over time that energizes all of your other skills. And this superpower is what sets you apart. It allows you to help your people slay their villains and come out on top in their own journeys. And the way I like to frame it is if you look at all the skills you’ve developed over your life, there’s probably one thing that’s like the common thread, the thing that empowers everything else. And with that sort of framing, what do you think your superpower is?
Cindy Mich 13:56
Well, I think I’ve been told repeatedly. And I didn’t really quite notice this before. And I have a very hard time embracing it, I’ll be the first one to tell you just because people say that I have it doesn’t mean that I can actually possess it, which is I am told I have an innate ability to constantly pull someone forward, perfect strangers, other people, it could be words could be something I posted could be something I said I’m always looking for the better part and I always see the better part of everyone all of the time, even when it’s most difficult. There is a superhero we all know who does that all the time which I get called all the time to which is quite a compliment. Wonder Woman always sees the good in everyone she’s always pushing for love and I too, I’m the same in that for years and years and years. I’m always trying to inspire people. So much so that very recently someone had said to me you don’t know this, but what you’ve done literally saved my life period. That’s probably the highest compliment I could possibly ever get. So yeah, I think My superpower is just that ability to lift people up even from the darkest places.
Richard Matthews 15:06
Yeah, I love that superpower. I had a mentor of mine when I was young tell me I have the gift of encouragement. I think it’s seeing the potential in people. Not a lot of people have that skill to see the potential. Most people see the world the way it is, not the way that it could be. And they see people the way they are, not the way that they could be. And what’s interesting, I think, is when you see potential, and you speak that potential to someone, you have the ability to speak truth into their lives, to help them grow into that potential. And you literally change people’s lives with the words that you say to them. Which is, I think if there’s any sort of superpower, that’s one of the most magical ones.
Cindy Mich 15:53
Oh, yes, absolutely. Without a doubt. Especially in this day and age, with the way things are, people need so much more encouragement, and inspiration and they need to know that there is good inside of them and that they haven’t lost themselves. I think that’s very important,
Richard Matthews 16:08
And that their story is worthy, and that their perspective and the person that the life that they’re living has value and that value can be given to other people.
Cindy Mich 16:18
Absolutely. Without a doubt. You betcha. That’s kind of what the magazine is all about. I like to shine a light on people that normally would have a really tough time getting coverage or, or get frustrated, and say no one will tell my story, or no one wants to see what I do. I want to see what you do. I think it’s important.
Richard Matthews 16:33
Yeah, absolutely. One of the things that I was warned about as a young kid, in that sort of realm was, my mentor told me I had to give them encouragement. He also said, be careful of what you say, because people will listen to you, and change their lives accordingly. And I remember I was 17 when he told me that and I shrug it off. And I was like, yeah, whatever. No one’s ever gonna listen to me. And then a couple of years down the line, I had some experiences where people came to me for counsel and had that kind of relationship. And then they’ve changed their lives and change their actions based on conversations we have. And it struck me really hard, like, oh, man, I do actually have to, like pay attention to what you say to people. Especially if you have that gift of encouragement. And I’m curious if you’ve ever sort of run into that yourself and realize the weight of that responsibility.
Cindy Mich 17:24
Every day, actually, surprisingly, I think one of the hardest parts about journalism, in general, is this, I think, many times that we can be misconstrued. I am an extremely passionate journalist. So whatever I advocate for I am very strong about it. Meaning, for instance, I do a lot of TV and film reviews. And oftentimes people say I started watching the show where I watched this because of your influence. That’s a positive influence. We live in a world right now where it’s very hard to be a journalist because people always look at you. And they’re wondering and questioning now, which is not something we always had. So yes, it wasn’t until recently that I really realized how many people actually listen to everything that I say. So I’ve kind of had to take a step back and say to myself, Think before you talk, and that is not something Cindy does well, I’m very passionate, and I run with my heart. I’m a heart thinker. So automatically, it’s this desire to boom, I have to say this. No, you don’t. You can think about it first or you can be passionate about it and put it in a different way. So yes, I realized my responsibility, I take it very seriously, I try to use it for good almost always for good. There are points in time where we all fail and falter. We have bad days bad things happen. There’s a lot of bad things, very sad, tragic things happening that people have a lot to say. So yeah, I think that, one of the things I’m learning is to use it wisely and responsibly, and take good care of your audience. Don’t steer them in negative directions.
Richard Matthews 19:01
Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. And it’s an interesting thing, especially when you start having an audience of people who listens to you, I think that’s probably even more difficult than one on one. Because you don’t get to see the impact you’re having on all the people.
Cindy Mich 19:12
Richard Matthews 19:14
So it’s like an unknown quantity.
Cindy Mich 19:16
It is, I mean, and I kind of like radio that way, because you know what, this for me is much more nerve-wracking. I’ve been in front of the camera way too much lately. And truth be told, it makes me terribly nervous, which is why I’m not an actor. But I’ll do it. I realized that people like to see you, etc. But yeah, sometimes it’s nice to be on the radio and be like, Oh, I’d love to be able to see what they think. But then they send me notes, or they’ll be, oh I heard show today, blah, blah, blah. So feedback is feedback.
Richard Matthews 19:42
So I’m talking about the flip side of your superpower, which of course, is your fatal flaw. Every Superman has his kryptonite, and every Wonder Woman, can’t remove her bracelets of victory without going mad. So you probably have a flaw that’s held you back in your business, something that you’ve struggled with maybe it’s perfectionism is something I struggle with that kept me from shipping product actually finishing things or lack of self-care, which led to me letting my clients walk all over me. I mean, not having good boundaries and stuff like that. But I think more important than what the flaw is, is how have you learned to overcome it or rectify it so you can continue to grow. And hopefully, our audience can learn a little bit from your experience there.
Cindy Mich 20:21
Well, I think just like with Wonder Woman, I’m kind of the same, which is, when you are deeply innately well aware of the fact that you love very hard and you’re very passionate, and you’re very protective. Sometimes those qualities can be very difficult. Case in point, most of what I do is work in entertainment. And I take a lot of things very personally. And that’s one of two things I’ve learned to shelve. I cannot ingest everything anymore. Perfect Strangers who say things about my work and my reputation, I have to learn to let it go. Just like I work with my better half, I have to learn to let that go. When people criticize that sort of stuff. You have to learn to not constantly be affected by every single element around you. I even remember that Wonder Woman in the movie where she can’t help herself. She’s like, I want to save everybody. And you know what, I can’t save everybody. I can’t cover every story. I can’t be so wrinkled by the feathers of every single thing that happens all the time. On the flip side of the fence, procrastination, oh, my gosh, I am so horrid with this, I will wait to like two hours before I have to do something. And it’s due I’ve had weeks. And then I’m like, wait, but I hate to admit it, the best work I’ve ever done is done like that is when it’s I have no more time, it can’t screw around anymore. So I need to learn how to prepare better, you know, Wonder Woman would never wake up in the morning and be like, I have to think about this and figure it out and put it off. She’d be like, boom, let’s handle this. And especially for writers that might be listening to this, it’s super important. Some of the best pieces take a lot of research, a lot of time pondering and your brain doesn’t always work, at least for us writers, your brain isn’t on 24 seven. And if I get emotionally involved with everything going on in the world, I physically cannot write and I can’t write well. So it’s important that you set up a system to stop procrastination, and most importantly, not everything can take an emotional toll on you. Otherwise, you can’t do what you love. Or you can but you won’t do it as well.
Richard Matthews 22:25
Yeah, absolutely. I know, the procrastination bit is hard, especially about writing. For me, at least. I know cuz I do a lot of writing for my business where I’m like, either writing lessons or writing training or writing stuff. We travel full time, which I mentioned, I’m in the process of writing a book about that. And I know my biggest struggle with writing, I come down with procrastination stuff is like, it’s hard to write without being in the right emotional state to write if that makes sense. And I haven’t yet figured out how to put myself into the right emotional state to write. I just know when it happens, I need to sit down and write. So I’m curious if you have any techniques as a professional writer to put yourself into that state where that where the words flow, and you can actually get the writing you need to be doing?
Cindy Mich 23:18
Oh, you bet. I always have the four go twos, as I call it. First of all, I don’t know how Lady Gaga and some of those other people do it. Because some musicians talk a lot about how they do their best writing when they’re drinking. I’m here to tell you I have a solid rule where whenever I’m in a deep mode, especially when I know I’m writing something I’ve started absolutely no alcohol because it affects your brain. I mean, afterward sure, if I want to have a little wine, that’s fine, but absolutely not. It just interferes with what’s going on up here. So no alcohol number to fall in love, that’ll definitely help I’m crazy mad about my own children. That helps. But almost three years ago, I met him, the one. So I think that always helps whenever you are deeply in love with someone that’s kind of rooted in you and you just feel better about yourself in life in general. That definitely helps. Number three, whenever you’re writing, try to write about anything or everything that fascinates you. Like I know that when I interview somebody that I’m a little less excited, it’s good, but it could be better you know what I’m saying? So genuinely look for anything that intrigues you and the more difficult it seems the better it is for you. So I do believe in challenges and pushing yourself and then last of all, it’s okay and I used to hate this but it’s true. It’s okay to not get it done on time. If you get writer’s block it’s okay to walk away it’s okay to put it down. It’s okay to stop obsessing. That’s another thing. I added things to the point where I’m like, oh my god enough, like get a divorce from this already. It’s important if you’re going to do really good solid writing, know when Enough is enough. And you’ll know when that is. You’ll learn to be able to say, I have to leave you alone and move on to the next thing.
Richard Matthews 24:54
Yeah, I know for me, one of the things that I know, when it’s done, is when I read it out loud to someone else.
Cindy Mich 25:02
Sure. Oh, absolutely. I agree.
Richard Matthews 25:05
I’m not sure if that’s a normal writing thing, but I always try to write as if you were reading a story around a campfire, like telling a story.
Cindy Mich 25:13
That’s different. Yeah, that’s not something I’ve done.
Richard Matthews 25:16
It’s just a thing in my head that, right or wrong. It’s just the way I approach my writing is that you know, human beings are story born people. We’ve carried all of our history through stories and stories have constantly been told around the campfire, or whatever the analogous is of around the campfire of listening to the troubadour come and tell the stories. So anytime I write, I always stop, and I’ll read it out loud. And if I don’t like the way it sounds out loud, I’ll rewrite it and rewrite it until it sounds good out loud. And then when I finished a piece I can read it to my wife, and it flows the way I want. That’s how I know it’s done.
Cindy Mich 25:54
Very nice. I’ll have to give that a try. I have read some pieces. But it’s few and far between, like I said, probably because I’m just self conscious. And I’m like, I don’t know, I’ll probably hack it apart when I read it in person. But I will try that more and more, it’s probably not a bad idea.
Richard Matthews 26:09
It’s just a thing that I’ve tried. And I know when you can speak it well, the story hits people, it’s engaging. That’s what I want. And if it’s engaging out loud, it’ll be engaging in their head when they read it.
Cindy Mich 26:22
Absolutely. You bet.
Richard Matthews 26:23
That’s my goal anyway, but sometimes that helps me. But I love your tips, by the way, those are great tips for writing. I’ve been one much for the alcohol stuff. So I don’t have to worry about that too much. But the rest of them are all really solid tips. And particularly the thing about falling in love. I’ve never thought about it that way. But I’ve noticed the things that I enjoy. We talked about passion before the things that you’re actually in love with. I love writing about my children in our stories and the stuff that we do together. I love writing about monetary history, which I think other people find incredibly boring, but it fascinates me to no end so I like writing about that. And travel and those kinds of things. And like anytime I get into a subject that I love, it’s easier to turn yourself on to get yourself into the mode of writing.
Cindy Mich 27:15
Absolutely. Without a doubt, you bet. Find the things that make your tummy tickle.
Richard Matthews 27:20
Yeah, absolutely. So I want to talk next about your common enemy. And this will be interesting because you’re in the entertainment industry. Every superhero has an arch nemesis, it’s a thing that they’re constantly fighting against in their world. In the world of business that takes a lot of forms. But generally speaking, we put it in the context of your clients, or in this case, maybe your readers or the people who are watching your entertainment that you’re putting together. And it’s a mindset, it’s a flaw that you constantly have to fight to overcome. So you can actually give them the value that you came to give. Right, which in your case is entertainment. So what do you think your common enemy is as someone who’s in the entertainment industry?
Cindy Mich 28:02
Oh, boy, I’m not so sure people are gonna like this, but this is kind of the hard truth. And I’ve been grappling with this for quite some time. I remember being eight years old. And one of the things that I remember very, very vividly, that’s why I got into being a film judge and having a festival is I love cinema, I love movies, I love going to movies, I dreamt of being on a red carpet and meeting the celebrities, etc. So all of my life, I’ve waited to do what I do now. And then you come to find out that the enemy, in a lot of ways, is what you’ve idolized for such a very long time. There are realities of Hollywood that are very, against my grain in a lot of ways. And I didn’t realize just how much so until the last year or two, I wouldn’t exactly call them my enemy, I would say I’ve wanted to be in their realm for a very long time. And I work in the indie world. So we in the indie world are always trying to become a part of them. And it’s very difficult because they push you down farther and farther. They make it harder to come into their realm. They make it very difficult to be respected in their world. And I don’t think it’s their fault. I think people who end up in Hollywood and who do very well successfully, are kind of controlled to a certain extent by higher powers to be so that’s really where my real enemy lies are the controlling forces in Hollywood who make it their business to award people not so much for their talent, but more so about the dollars and cents and things in the box office, things like that. The Politics of Hollywood is my enemy, basically long story short. And I’m not going to give up on continuing to try to make our world equal with their worlds to some extent because there’s a lot of talent, there’s a tremendous amount of talent and entertainment that’s not getting seen. And people like myself and many others, I now am working very hard to get them seen, so the closest I’ve gotten to beating them is joining them. So for the last two years of my festival, I have Oscar nominated movies, and I have people from Cannes and Sundance and they have found my festival. So we’re merging slowly but surely.
Richard Matthews 30:26
It’s an interesting thing too because Hollywood is one of the cultural pillars of the world. It’s Hollywood, It’s academia. It’s social media and those kinds of things are like the big cultural pillars.
Cindy Mich 30:38
Richard Matthews 30:39
And of the things that I’ve seen with Hollywood since I started paying attention to the world, is that Hollywood is like a monolithic kind of thing, where it’s all sort of one ideology. And if you don’t fit in an ideology, the stories don’t get told.
Cindy Mich 31:00
Absolutely. And I think there’s an agenda there. And it’s getting worse in terms of that. People that are controlling, are becoming more controlling with the way things are changing. I almost feel like Hollywood doesn’t have a choice. But to change at this point. With this whole crisis that happened in the last year. There’s a lot of things coming out of the woodwork that needs to be addressed, that hopefully will be addressed. There are certain things I’m curious to see how the Oscars are, part of me doesn’t want to watch because I’ve been waiting my whole life to win one. I’m not so sure I want to win one anymore, because I know what that means. But it’ll be interesting to see how they develop and change things and alter their world. Plus nowadays, they’re not making as many movies for practicality purposes. There aren’t as many projects coming out as theaters are falling and crumbling. So we’ll just see how Hollywood fares and perhaps these superheroes start prevailing, so to speak, and they’ll have no choice but take over.
Richard Matthews 31:57
I think one of the things that has happened, and I could be wrong about this. This is my prediction on the future, is that the global pandemic in the process of destroying theaters has leveled the playing field for distribution on movies. I don’t know that we’re there yet. But it’s going to happen because now your distribution platforms. They’re all digital. So if you can get the…
Cindy Mich 32:30
Well, I wouldn’t exactly go that far. I mean, remember, you’re talking to a woman who, and I’m a staunch supporter of this, like when I say I’m really vigilant about these sorts of things I am. The idea of people wanting to screen a movie as an HBO max drives me nuts. Like I can’t stand this whole ideology of let’s just watch Wonder Woman 84 on HBO Max. No, you get up and you go to a theater because that’s what you do. Cinema is a live experience. So I literally have invested in and I am now a working traveling drive in theater. So you could in essence get a distribution from me as a drive-in theater, and I go place to place. I have a whole inflatable screen and projector. I even have a canopy tent the whole nine yards. I go to great lengths to preserve cinema. Cinema should be preserved. It should be kept in the theater, it should be dealt with like Marty Scorsese says it belongs in the theater.
Richard Matthews 33:23
The artists meant for that medium.
Cindy Mich 33:26
Oh, God. Yeah, absolutely. I mean, look at Wonder Woman, when you watch it on TV, and you watch it on a big screen. There’s no comparison. It’s like watching Marvel movies on a small screen or a laptop, or go with the wind. Nobody would watch Gone with the Wind at home for God’s sake, you go to a theater, you need to experience the sound you need to be in a theater environment. But that’s me. Do you know what I mean? That’s what I’m talking about.
Richard Matthews 33:50
So how do you think the crumbling theater industry is going to deal with that, in the new world?
Cindy Mich 33:57
They’re getting creative. I’m not the only person that seeing people do outdoor Cinema of some type or years ago, people were doing it. I’ve done film festivals in bars, restaurants, galleries, etc. You have to acclimate and some that are believers like I am will continue to do whatever you can. The other part of the problem is which other festival founders will hate hearing but it’s the truth. I work with a lot of festival founders, and in general, they are jumping to virtual and that’s not helping, that is not helping the theatre industry. People have got to be willing to go outside of their comfort level to some degree to preserve what they have. I don’t see anything unsafe or inappropriate about going outside in the fresh air and sitting outside and putting on a blanket and having some food and taking your kids and watching a movie. It’s very healthy.
Richard Matthews 34:46
So do you think like I was saying earlier that with a lot of the bigger distribution channels sort of crumbling that people like you are going to open up the Hollywood monolith to those stories that don’t get the chance to get told as much on a larger scale than they would have 10 years ago?
Cindy Mich 35:04
I do. I think that there’s a chance but I will tell you very honestly because I get told this all the time. Hollywood and Hollywood’s films do well because people want to go watch Robert Downey Jr. And I love Robert Downey Jr. I love Thor, I love Wonder Woman. So the game is still kind of the game until indie people are constantly using recognizable so I feel like it’s never going to be on the same plateau. I mean, sure, I think that there’s a better chance for people like myself to get in league with Hollywood’s and deal with that. But that’s money. And there are lots of political things that get involved with that. So it’s very slowly, slowly, slowly changing. It’s kind of the same game.
Richard Matthews 35:50
The great stories don’t win, because they’re great stories. Because you have the marketing side of things, you have to get people to see the great story. And that’s where you call them recognizable. So I’ve never heard of that term before.
Cindy Mich 36:02
I mean, come to my industry. Oh, God, yeah, work in my industry for a week. That’s all you’ll ever hear how many recognizable are in here, and how many social media followers do they have? I can’t even believe that people are getting cast or even considered because their social media following is like 800,000, which is ridiculous. The long story short is, this is why I’m a very bad filmmaker, I am a writer. I took a beautiful story that I wrote for my partner and turned it into a television series, and then the actors changed it. And then writers get resentful. Well, in this case, I got a bit resentful because I’m like, Oh, this beautiful thing. I get it, it has to change, actors change it, they bring a lot to the table. And they did. But make no mistake, that when you create something and try to build it, make it something beautiful. It really shouldn’t have anything to do with how many social media followers you are. But the sad part is, is that the movie business has become all too much about a business and not even so much anymore about creativity. That’s why I want my festival preserved, that I get to take any story I want. And if my judges like it, and I’m not associated with them, and I screen it, that people will actually see these movies and they don’t have to wait for Hollywood to release them. It’s a sad, sad thing to see words die on a piece of paper.
Richard Matthews 37:20
Yeah, absolutely. I for one, I’m a sucker for a good story. I know that one of the things that I’ve hated about Hollywood over the last 10 years is sort of the declining quality of stories and the increasing budget of telling subpar stories. The thing that probably drives me the most nuts is this insistence that we have what I call Mary Jane characters which are female characters who are not heroes. They’re not heroines in their own story. It just everything goes good for them because they’re girls. And I’m like, that’s not the kind of story I’ve got three daughters, I want them to see heroines, who have struggles and have to overcome them and be heroes. And we know we can do it because there are lots of female characters that are like Princess Leia, or one of my favorite female Heroes is Trinity from the matrix. You can write interesting, good female characters. In the last four or five years. It seems like we’ve had a lot of very sad female characters, I call it Mary Jane’s just everything goes well for them because they’re women.
Cindy Mich 38:31
Absolutely. This part of the reason why I think I mean, oftentimes when people ask me who I am? I say before per combination. So there’s Wonder Woman, Maleficent because I don’t trust very easily. Harley Quinn is very high on my list. Now talk about overcoming adversity. Well, not always. And then somebody called me Glinda the Good Witch. So I’m like a combination of all four of those is the perfect superhero for Cindy.
Richard Matthews 38:54
That’s awesome. I just know, personally, I would like to see more real heroes like in the story and actually follow that hero’s journey. And it seems like Hollywood sort of lost that recently, where they’re not telling as many of the hero’s arcs.
Cindy Mich 39:12
Absolutely. And I really hope that Gal Gadot never watches this interview, because what I’m about to say would probably Oh, my God, Wonder Woman would hate me. But it made me somewhat sad, because with the budget of millions and millions and millions Wonder Woman 84, which I’ve seen, hopefully, you’ve seen it. So this is somewhat of a spoiler alert, just to say that, with all those millions, I could have made 1000s of indie movies. I mean, it was very disappointing. On some levels to see the end product. I mean, I think they did as good as they could. But that’s when like you said all the money that gets put into it.
Richard Matthews 39:47
You’re like, you got to get the story right. I want to fall in love with the character with the heroine or the hero. And if you don’t get that part there, all the money you spend on the fancy effects does not matter.
Cindy Mich 40:00
Thank you very much.
Richard Matthews 40:02
It sounds like we agree on that. So the flip side of your common enemy then. If your common enemy is the politics and everything in the monolithic culture there in Hollywood, your driving force is the flip side. So just like Spider Man fights to save New York or Batman fights to save Gotham or Google fights to index and categorize all the world’s information. What is it that you fight for with your company?
Cindy Mich 40:22
I think all of them. It’s simple. I mean, it’s not a surprise that almost everything is called The Art is alive. It literally is to keep the art alive. Meaning that the art of cinema or the art of art, so to speak, I think oftentimes, people be little. And they don’t mean to, I just don’t think that they have enough of an appreciation that an art form can be anything from a piece of writing to a sculpture, to a biker that composes something as far as a tattoo. So I fight to preserve not only art but also to open up the doors so that people all over the country will know someone, I think it’s very important that indies need attention and appreciation. And I can’t tell you how much appreciation I get from filmmakers and artists and people in the indie world who feel like no one sees them, no one will ever see their work. And they feel like giving up so I fight every day so that somebody reads something that I said or does something and says I didn’t give up, or I didn’t give in.
Richard Matthews 41:30
So I have an interesting thought that I think goes along with the whole idea that art is alive. And my idea is something I heard from Orson Scott Card. Are you familiar with him? He’s an author?
Cindy Mich 41:43
Richard Matthews 41:44
He writes Ender’s Game series of books.
Cindy Mich 41:47
Richard Matthews 41:49
Ender’s Game is the best-selling science fiction novel every year since 1978. They sell on their prints every single year.
Cindy Mich 41:56
Oh, goodness, look at that.
Richard Matthews 41:57
So anyway, they’re like the Lord of the Rings of the fantasy world. They’re science fiction. But anyway, so at the end of all of his books, he has a chapter where he has a reflection of the author kind of thing. And one of the things he talked about as a writer, he’s like, I only ever write half of the story. And the other half of the story is put together when someone reads it. And so the whole idea that the art is alive is that without someone to watch your film or read your story, it’s dead. Right? So you have to have someone who’s engaging with it, right, who shows up at the Art Gallery and contemplates the art you have hanging on the wall, or watches the movie in the cinema in order for it to come alive? Because it comes alive in their head. That’s when it comes alive. And I’m curious, is that sort of what you mean? Is that where you’re going with that idea?
Cindy Mich 42:47
I think in a lot of ways, I mean, I’ve seen it, that’s part of the reason why I mentioned to you earlier about art is alive magazine. That’s why I have no apprehension. And I do take some flack for it all the time. Like how can you want to publish a magazine and literally publish work from someone who’s never written before? Well, I’m the boss, so I can. But more importantly, I can remember being told again and again, and again, no, no, we’re not publishing, we’re not publishing, everybody has that story, when you first start out, don’t like it, don’t want it. We’re not publishing you. And after, like, 100 times, finally, someone did. But why should it have to be that hard? I don’t think it should. And then writers get discouraged, and then they quit. And so ask yourself, if Stephen King had been told over and over again, no, what would have happened? So I think that I owe it. It’s almost a public service, or in some ways, I’m a public servant, so to speak, it’s important that people realize that if they just give up, you never really realize the effect you have on someone to start doing some of this, till you start publishing certain things till the word of mouth comes, and then all of a sudden, this person meets this person, then they’re making more art, this person is making more art. For my festival, filmmakers come together, and they’ve made projects together, they’ve cast people from there. So you see what I mean. It’s just a net that keeps getting wider and wider. So the biggest, most important thing for me to be able to keep art is alive is to be able to keep that flicker going, the light has to stay on. Somebody has to man the lighthouse, you know. And lately, I was just asking myself this question yesterday. I’m like, well, you want to keep running this lighthouse? Because I have an opportunity to stop. I mean, I’m literally kind of wondering when she’s on the ground and asking herself, what am I going to do here? I’m kind of right now literally contemplating whether I want to keep the lighthouse or actually close the lighthouse and move on to the next thing. as we speak. I have these opportunities. So we’ll see. But I like manning the lighthouse. I like keeping the light on. It’s important, period.
Richard Matthews 44:50
Yeah. So my next question for you is more practical. And I call this heroes tool belt. Just like every superhero has a tool belt with awesome gadgets like batarangs and web slingers and laser eyes and such. I wanna talk about one or two tools you couldn’t live without to run your business. It could be anything from your notepad, your calendar, to your marketing tools to something you use to sit down every time you write, or attract writers, anything you think is essential to getting your job done every day.
Cindy Mich 45:19
Sure, paper, I know that that sounds very cliche, but it’s true. I mean, I am a very old-school writer, everything that I’ve ever written has been on paper, even to this day, I refuse to sit down on a laptop and just organically create. I just can’t do it. I mean, I suppose I could. But I prefer not to first of all laptops crash, I think people put too much knowledge into this, oh, it’ll be fine. We can trust our laptop. No, you can’t. But if you wrote a whole story, and all of a sudden, it got burned to the ground somehow. So I think it’s important to stick with the old school stuff, I have a typewriter, I haven’t used it in forever, I probably will. But anything old school relative to writing, I do flip my pens around, there are certain ones I like. But by and large, paper is something I cannot live without because I cannot do my job. Second of all, I think I hate to admit it, this whole emotional thing that I talk so much about being such a challenge. It’s also part of my tool belt. Some of the best things I’ve ever written, including the things for my better half, come from that innate sense of passion that I have, whether it’s good or bad, meaning if I feel very, very strongly about, well, I’m writing a piece about the Screen Actors Guild, I can’t even tell you how passionate I feel about some of those items that you’ll read eventually. So that fuels me, I need to be fueled. And the more frustrated or happy or excited I am about something, the better I can write. Number three, oftentimes, pictures, pictures of my children, pictures of my significant other, etc. It’s important to me that when I get frustrated, I can look around in this room. This is where I do most of my writing, and see something comforting, that’s always got to be in your tool belt. And most importantly, just words, there’s always these words I keep in my head, some of them are negative, most of them are positive, always have to have that you always have to remind yourself to keep going, no matter where you came from, you have to keep going forward no matter how hard it is. That’s it.
Richard Matthews 47:19
So I have a question for you. And this is just because it’s something I’ve noticed about myself, I don’t do a lot of writing with pen and paper, I do most of mine on the computer because I think better with the keyboard, I can also write 100 words a minute, on the keyboard. And on the pad of paper, it’s like five words a minute. So it’s just more efficient for me. But I have recently, just in an effort to learn how to bring the old school stuff into writing with fancy pens. With fountain pens, so like the old school, like you dip this in ink, and you suck the ink into it kind of thing and learn to write with it all old school style. And one thing I’ve noticed about getting into a fancy writing tool is I care a lot more about my paper, and about my writing. When I write in person when I have something like this. I’m just curious if you’ve ever had any experiences like that if the quality of your writing tools has ever impacted your desire to sit down and write?
Cindy Mich 48:13
Oh, that’s a good question. Not yet it hasn’t. I mean, I have looked at getting a custom pen like yours because I’m like, it’s at that point where I should get like a feather pen or I should get like, if nothing else, for the experience part of it. You know what I mean? I’m more of a believer that it isn’t so much what you write with as much as it is what you are writing about. So it’s really more about the subject versus the actual particular style of tool that you have, you know what I mean? I mean, it’s neat, don’t get me wrong, I’m definitely going in the direction you’re talking about. And I definitely feel like there are certain pens that make me write more effectively, that don’t blurt as much that doesn’t make as much of a mask that doesn’t leak or run. But yeah, always substance.
Richard Matthews 48:55
This is my little practice book, like learning how to do handwriting, and part of the thing that always bothered me about writing by hand is that my handwriting is terrible. And so like if I write it, I have a hard time reading it later to like if I need to transcribe it and turn it digital to put it as a book or printed out or anything. And I was like, if I’m ever going to be able to use some of these cool old school tools, I need to work on my handwriting. That’s where I’m at now. It’s like I picked up a nice pen. And I picked up a nice notebook. And I’ve been learning how to do handwriting at a high level. So that I would always just default to writing with my keyboard.
Cindy Mich 49:33
Gotcha, I’m impressed.
Richard Matthews 49:34
And so it’s just sort of a little side hobby. My wife thinks I’m nuts cuz I spent like 100 bucks on calligraphy and handwriting and paper stuff. And I was like, I just want to get good at it. And I’m not yet but I’m getting there.
Cindy Mich 49:47
Good for you.
Richard Matthews 49:49
So it’s sort of in that tool belt for writers, if you’re going to write sometimes it’s nice to write with pen and paper and I want to actually look like I want the storytelling not to be the only part of the art. If that makes sense.
Cindy Mich 50:02
I don’t disagree at all. Very very true.
Richard Matthews 50:06
Maybe that’s weird. But that’s the way I feel about it.
Cindy Mich 50:06
Nothing weird about it. Do what makes you happy.
Cindy Mich 50:13
Richard Matthews 50:13
Speaking of heroic tools, I want to take a few minutes to tell you about a tool we built that powers the Hero Show and is now this show’s primary sponsor. Hey, there fellow podcaster. Having a weekly audio and video show on all the major online networks that builds your brand creates fame and drive sales for your business doesn’t have to be hard. I know it feels that way. Because you’ve tried managing your show internally and realize how resource intensive it can be. You felt the pain o Ff pouring eight to 10 hours of work into just getting one hour of content published and promoted all over the place. You see the drain on your resources, but you do it anyways because you know how powerful it is heck you’ve probably even tried some of those automated solutions and ended up with stuff that makes your brand look cheesy and cheap. That’s not helping grow your business. Don’t give up though. The struggle ends now introducing, Push Button Podcasts a done for you service that will help you get your show out every single week without you lifting a finger. After you’ve pushed that stop record button. We handle everything else uploading, editing, transcribing, writing, research graphics, publication, and promotion, all done by real humans who know understand, and care about your brand, almost as much as you do. Empowered by our own proprietary technology, our team will let you get back to doing what you love. While we handle the rest. Check us out at pushbuttonpodcasts.com forward slash hero for 10% off the lifetime of your service with us and see the power of having an audio and video podcast growing and driving micro-celebrity status and business in your niche without you having to lift more than a finger to push that stop record button. Again, that’s pushbuttonpodcasts.com forward slash hero See you there. You’re listening to the Hero Show, unlocking the power of influence and success.
Richard Matthews 51:51
So I want to talk then a little bit about your own personal heroes. Every hero has their mentors, just like Frodo had Gandalf or Luke had Obi Wan or Robert Kiyosaki had his rich dad, or Spider Man had his Uncle Ben, Who were some of your heroes. Were they real life mentors? Are they speakers or authors maybe, peers who were a couple of years ahead of you, and how important were they to what you’ve accomplished so far?
Cindy Mich 52:13
Mentors? Okay. So I think that those are pretty straightforward. I want to say Judy Blume I think from the writing perspective, if it wasn’t for Judy Blume I wouldn’t be a writer now. I can remember Judy Blume from a young on, I can remember her now. I remember every single thing I ever read from her and just wanting to be her in essence. So I mean, what greater mentorship is that than finding someone who you just adore her writing. I just bought a Judy Blume book not so long ago, at my old age, my kids have read Judy Blume. So definitely, without a doubt, Nan Rotti who I’ve always said is adorable. She was my elementary school teacher who ended up catching me cheating. Literally, I got in trouble. And then she wrote a note home and then I faked my dad’s signature. Anyways, she eventually convinced me to submit my work to a writing contest, which is the very first award ever won. So she saw something in me that I didn’t. So definitely a mentor, over the course of years. My heroes are simple people. First of all my children, my son Kerwin is probably one of my biggest heroes. I’ve been very vocal about his struggle with seizures three years at a time, he’s fortunately now seizure free, but he just keeps getting up and smiling, and was an awful time. So He’s my hero, all of my children really are my heroes. They’re so happy and passionate, and they know their direction. They’re so smart, there’s so much smarter than their mother, I was so miscalculated their ages. So I’m like, oh my god. So they’re my heroes, honestly, truthfully, at this day today. My significant other is my hero, every day, he gets up, and he reminds me that I’m far better. And then I need to like myself a whole lot more, and that I’m a wonderful woman. And that’s not something I had before. But most importantly, my final hero would be any person that wakes up and says to themselves, I don’t want to live but I do. I don’t want to try this, but I do. I’m scared. But I’ll attempt it. And literally, literally never gives up no matter how hard it gets. That is really the definition of a hero.
Richard Matthews 54:32
I love the whole thing, on the first bit. It always surprised me. When I got on and started doing the show how many people when I asked that question, responded the same way you did, with people who, it’s their husband, their uncle, their school teacher. It’s the people who probably, if you ask them, they wouldn’t think to themselves, yeah, that person thinks I’m their hero. It wouldn’t even cross their mind. And so it always reminds me that like, Hey, we should always sort of act in a way that we’re worthy of that kind of influence, right? Because you have it whether you know it or not. So that’s the first one I really like, but the last bit about being the kind of person who never gives up. My favorite quote is from Winston Churchill, I believe, who says, never ever, ever, ever, ever, ever give up. I think he says it like 27 times, I don’t remember exactly. The advice I give my children all the time is that there’s no competition for real men or real women anymore because most people give up. And if you’ll just be the one person who doesn’t give up, then no matter what it is you’re pursuing, you can reach the top of any category you want, by persistence, by never giving up. My son, for instance, when he was seven when he joined gymnastics. And he had one of his little buddies, who was a natural born talent in gymnastics, like the kind of kid that he goes out there. And he’s six years old, and he can do a back handspring back tuck with like, perfect form and everything and not even have to try. And my son has to try. He had to practice and he had to try hard. And he had to work with his coaches. And he had to get better at it because he was terrible. And he had to get good. And he’d come to me and be like, why is he so much better than me? And I was like, the difference is that he has a natural talent, and he doesn’t have to try it. So he doesn’t write, he doesn’t try. And I was like, the differences like if you wanted to get competitive with gymnastics, which he didn’t, but you know, he was a young kid at the time. But if you wanted to get competitive, your ability to come in and work every day, on your craft, will make you far more competitive than he’ll ever be. Because you’re willing to try and never give up.
Cindy Mich 57:01
All right, absolutely.
Richard Matthews 57:03
It’s like now if you marry those two together, you have natural talent and never give up persistence, then you end up with Olympians or whatever the case is in other industries. But you can compete at a really high level in any space with persistence.
Cindy Mich 57:20
Oh, I agree with you, absolutely.
Richard Matthews 57:23
I love that. So, got one more question for you. And that’s your guiding principles. So one of the things that make heroes heroic is that they live by a code. For instance, Batman never kills his enemies, he only ever brings them to Arkham Asylum. So as we wrap up the interview, let’s talk about the top one, maybe two priorities that you use regularly in your life, maybe something you wish you knew when you first started out on your own hero’s journey?
Cindy Mich 57:48
Well, I think that one of my go to’s without a doubt of principle saying this which doesn’t always suit my purposes, well, which is, you never ever, ever do anything or give anything to anyone that goes against your character. I have done that once or twice, and only once or twice, which I will never do, again. Personal relationships and professional relationships should not cross boundaries ever. There should never be a point where if someone is truly your friend, they ask you for something or demand something of you professionally, which has been done of me and I caved. That will never happen again, those lines shouldn’t blur. So that’s always something you need to learn. Keep your friends on one side of the fence, help them as much as you can. Obviously, it goes without saying, period, even strangers sometimes do what you can to help someone but when it becomes something that you are personally against, that’s when you know that you need to not be doing it. Second of all, never let your professional endeavors overshadow your personal ones. I work in a business where not every publicist or people understands that if I have an emergency, all bets are off. If I’m not home, because my child needs something, all bets are off. If you know there’s an emergency right now, I will dump you and leave you in a heartbeat when it comes to someone I love for my children. That’s important to remember. And most importantly, when figuring out your priorities, and I know this is so against the grain. Never, ever pick a field or a place to go down career wise or otherwise. That makes you tons of money. I don’t care what people tell you. Well, the reason I’m a happy writer is because I’m broke all the time. And I don’t want to say like broke destitute. But the reality is, not all of us can be Stephen King. So when you look at the priority, you have to pick happiness and personal pleasure, and personal passion well above what you make. Otherwise, you’re going to end up being very miserable, fighting demons all of the time of different natures that you never knew existed. So the secret here is to always pick the right thing always go in the right direction. Never choose evil over good. And most importantly, never, ever, ever let them know what’s coming. Always keep it a secret. When you come to my show, I will never tell you my interview questions ahead of time. Always a secret, always, you always have to hide a little something, and then bam, it comes out in the end. And then they’re always so surprised. And then people cry, and they’re all happy. And it’s nice. It’s a nice event. Does that make sense?
Richard Matthews 1:00:26
I really like the whole thing about pursuing happiness over money. It’s one of the things that I’ve learned is, early in my career, I had a target income I was trying to hit. I ran my business based on trying to hit that target income. And I did eventually hit that target income actually, I got like three quarters of the way to that target income. And I realized, I had all the money I wanted. And I was like, it just didn’t matter anymore. And so instead, I started building my business on how I could help people. And then my business surpassed the target income very rapidly.
Cindy Mich 1:01:06
See what I mean. There you go.
Richard Matthews 1:01:08
Yeah. So it’s absolutely a principle. But it’s one of those things that as a young entrepreneur, 10, 15 years ago, I was enamored by the money.
Cindy Mich 1:01:17
Sure. Absolutely. Yeah. And who isn’t? You know, me especially, I mean, look, Hollywood, my nemesis, hello.
Richard Matthews 1:01:25
All about the money. So I completely agree with you on that set. And just out of curiosity, the last thing, you said about keeping everything a secret reminds me a little bit of Sun Tzu in the art of war. It says, moves in the darkness, like the blackness of night or something like that. And then at the last moment, strike like thunder, kind of thing. And I’ve always sort of figured, It’s always done in a war analogy, but I sort of figured it works really well in storytelling to where you have something that is surprising, something that’s that nobody sort of knew was happening, that you couldn’t guess if you’re reading the story. And that’s when you get the real, honest surprise and delight is when that happens.
Cindy Mich 1:02:08
Oh, absolutely. And sometimes I’m even surprised when I get to the very end of something I’ve written, it doesn’t look like it did in the beginning. You know what I mean? Like, I started off on one path. And ultimately, in the end, I was like, Oh, look, it took an interesting twist. Most of the time, that’s a good thing, every once in a while, it’s like, Hey, I’m not so sure about that. But that’s the only part where I think Wonder Woman and I vary meaning that she whips that last time, and all of a sudden, they’re telling the truth in three seconds flat, you get everything you need out of them right away. Whereas with me, it’s sort of a tenderizing, sort of, okay, you got to get to that point, as far as that goes. But I do like watching the story unfold. I like not knowing that it’s going to be the same at the end. You know what I mean? I think that’s the whole neat part of the art part of it, is that sort of thing. And most importantly, like I said, getting a favorable response at the end because I never know when I read something, what did they hate it like, I write it, and I’ll be like, no one’s gonna like this. Tonight, we’re gonna want to read, and surprisingly, that’s when they’re like, Oh, no, it’s wonderful. So it’s amazing to me how these little tricks that you do can end up, just leaps and bounds having such favorable outcomes. You know what I mean?
Richard Matthews 1:03:13
Have you watched a movie called knives out?
Cindy Mich 1:03:17
Yes. With my children, when it first came out at the theater, by the way, folks,
Richard Matthews 1:03:22
I watched it a the theater with a friend. And it’s one of those movies, I walked in with low expectations. Because it’s a mystery. And I walked out of the movie going, that was legitimately really, really well done storytelling. And my favorite line from that movie, which I’ve brought up a couple of times on this show is, the detective where he comes in, the female character asked him like, how do you always find the truth? And he said I follow the arc of the story. And as long as you follow the arc of the story, it ends unerringly at the truth. And that’s always sort of struck me, I’ve always, you know, it doesn’t really matter what you’re doing, if you’re following politics, if you’re doing marketing, if you’re writing a story, is you have to learn how to follow the story, the way the story feels natural and it always unerringly ends. To use the truth in a metaphorical sense, it ends up in a really good story. So anyway, that’s my sort of thought on that is that you have to learn how to see the arc of the story and then fit your characters fit your stuff into it.
Cindy Mich 1:04:34
You bet. That’s why I think most people when they watch a good television show, I’m like, I don’t think you guys really realize that without a good solid, strong, sturdy arc. Sometimes things can go awry, so to speak. So I find it interesting when I do a review, and then I’ll go on fan pages, and I’ll read it and I’ll be like, they’re complaining about this. And that’s and I’m like, are you really getting the arc of the story? Are you really seeing where it’s going from here to here? Are you watching that? Maybe that’s just what writers Do you know what I mean?
Richard Matthews 1:05:00
That’s what crazy people do, we follow the arc of the story.
Cindy Mich 1:05:06
Imagine that, yes, I do think writers are crazy people. That’s right. We are nuts. Naughtier than a fruitcake, nothing wrong with that, very good creativity.
Richard Matthews 1:05:15
I agree with you. So that’s basically a wrap on an interview. But I do finish every interview with a simple challenge that I call the hero’s challenge. And I do this specifically to help me get access to stories that I might not otherwise find on my own. Because not everyone is out there. Doing the podcast rounds like you might be doing. So the question is simple. Do you have someone in your life or in your network that you think has a cool entrepreneurial story? Who are they? First names are fine, and why do you think they should come to share their story on our show? First person that comes to mind for you?
Cindy Mich 1:05:45
Oh, God, the very first person I can think of, oh, goodness, Oh, it’s got to be MJ because I just saw recently, MJ Pedone is her name. She is a publicist. Actually, she’s owned her business for quite some time. She’s a native New Yorker. She’s a superhero. I’m never ever, ever lets the world see your sweat. She could be in the worst predicament possible. But she’s tough as nails. She is just brilliant with our clients. I mean, she is literally what I say I want to be when I grow up, one of my icons is her. She’ll probably never come on the show. Because I can’t even interview her. I’ve asked to interview her. I’m like, come on, MJ. She’s very centered around her clients. But she would be the very first go to I would think it would be MJ, she never gives up she never gives in.
Richard Matthews 1:06:32
We will try our best to get her on the show and see if we can get her to come to tell her story. But yeah, that is super cool. So thank you for that. And you know, in comic books, there’s always a crowd of people at the end who are standing and cheering for the acts of heroism. So as we close, I want to know where people can find you if they want your help in the future. Where can they go to light up the bat signal and say, you know what, I would like to read your stories or watch your films or be a part of your world? And outside of where they can do that as who are the best sorts of people to reach out to?
Cindy Mich 1:07:07
Well, I was just gonna say normally, as I said at the beginning or anything, but it’s not just limited to art so artists, authors, musicians, you name it, anything that falls under the art realm, I do a lot of nonprofits I do a lot of small business owners. I do just about anything that intrigues me so if you have an event and activity a place you own, anything you want to be covered I pretty much have an easy sell, so to speak. So the most direct route of course is an email which is CIN425one@gmail.com. www, the art is alive magazine.com that’s the magazine itself. The name of my festival is art is alive Film Festival, all you have to do is Google and you’ll find me on from freeway you’ll find a website. I do have a second film festival that’s all black and white Bedford Falls Film Festival, you can find me there. The other thing is that my radio show is now going into its 10th year it’s called Cin’s Chat Corner, which is on BlogTalkRadio. Otherwise, my name is Cindy. The last name is MICH somebody told me not so long ago that if you took a combination of Wonder Woman and put it together with a modern day Dick Cavett, you would have the best definition of me. So that’s a very high compliment. But yeah, Cindy MICH is my last name. And I’m all over social media because I have to be but yeah, that’s pretty much it. So usually, though, keep in mind that most oftentimes I’m out there looking for you. So you don’t have to look for me necessarily. I come out and look for you.
Richard Matthews 1:08:35
Awesome. Well, thank you so much for coming on the show today. Cindy. It’s been awesome chatting with you and hearing your story. Do you have any final words of wisdom for our audience before I click this stop record button?
Cindy Mich 1:08:45
Yeah, I would say remember this. And I said this not so long ago to someone. You’re never too old to start on your journey to finding yourself. You’re never too old to try something new. invent something new, discover something new. And most importantly, never ever, ever think there should ever be a point in time where you give up on something no matter how many times somebody tells you not to do it. Or they tell you no. Keep trying and keep pursuing and keep pushing. That’s the best I got.
Richard Matthews 1:09:16
Absolutely, thanks so much for coming today, Cindy.
Would You Like To Have A Content Marketing Machine Like “The HERO Show” For Your Business?
The HERO Show is produced and managed by PushButtonPodcasts a done-for-you service that will help get your show out every single week without you lifting a finger after you’ve pushed that “stop record” button.
They handle everything else: uploading, editing, transcribing, writing, research, graphics, publication, & promotion.
All done by real humans who know, understand, and care about YOUR brand… almost as much as you do.
Empowered by our their proprietary technology their team will let you get back to doing what you love while we they handle the rest.
Check out PushButtonPodcasts.com/hero for 10% off the lifetime of your service with them and see the power of having an audio and video podcast growing and driving awareness, attention, & authority in your niche without you having to life more a finger to push that “stop record” button.
Would You Like To Have A Content Marketing Machine Like “The HERO Show” For Your Business?
All done by real humans who know, understand, and care about YOUR brand… almost as much as you do.
What Is The Hero Show?
A peak behind the masks of modern day super heroes. What makes them tick? What are their super powers? Their worst enemies? What's their kryptonite? And who are their personal heroes? Find out by listening now
The HERO Show
Hi! I'm Richard Matthews and I've been helping Entrepreneurs
build HEROic Brands since 2013. Want me to help you too? Subscribe to my free content below:
Thanks for subscribing! I'll make sure you get updated about new content and episodes as they come out.