Last week, Lynn Chen, actress and author of The Actor’s Diet blog, was kind enough to take a break from her busy schedule to answer a few questions I had for a well-known personality in the Asian American, acting, and blogging communities. Check out the quick Q and A and what my initial lessons from her words of wisdom are below:
Johnny C: So between blogging and Vlogging and other ways to share yourself and your ideas, what made you go with blogging?
Lynn Chen: Blogging is a lot less time consuming!
Johnny C: It seems you tend to go to organic vegan restaurants quite. Do you have any other motivation besides the health benefits, such as the sustainability factor?
Lynn Chen: I try to eat organic/local when I can, but it’s not as much as I’d like to. My husband’s a vegetarian and I’m sensitive to cheese so vegan food is pretty fun to explore with him.
Johnny C: How do you feel about the level of change individual effort can achieve? One person blogging about a niche topic definitely wins an audience, sometimes even raises an awareness, like your Thick Dumpling Skin blog, and as we’ve seen, one person tweeting something or posting on YouTube can suddenly end up with over one million re-tweets or views.
Lynn Chen: You definitely hear about one person changing the world, but that should never be one’s motivation for doing something. In order to stay passionate, you have to believe in what you’re doing to begin with. That should be enough.
Johnny C: Besides giving people a chance to see your life and ideas through your Actor’s Diet and Thick Dumpling Skin blogs, what kind of ideas and messages do you hope to promote beyond what you’ve posted in the “about” section? Is there any call to action you have with them?
Lynn Chen: I hope to inspire people to find their own individual voice. What works for me doesn’t necessarily work for others.
Johnny C: As one of the people who has been inspired by what you’ve written on your blog and others sharing their stories, how do you view your responsibility for suddenly having become “branded”? Since personal branding is a new way to promote ideas, there comes an association with the brand. Does it reflect you more or do you suddenly feel yourself adapting to what you’ve created?
Lynn Chen: How funny – I really don’t think of myself as being “branded.” I’m just being me! I don’t like boxing myself into any labels, or thinking about how something I do might contradict something else.
Johnny C: Do you have any advice you’d like to share in regards to promoting and branding oneself? On making a difference? General life wisdom you’d like to share to some people who don’t have your experience?
Lynn Chen: Listen to your gut. Do what makes you happy.
So what do I derive from this? Well, for starters, I agree, blogging itself is a lot less time-consuming; it’s the research process before blogging that takes up my time!
Secondly, well, looks like she got me there, saving the world should never be someone’s motivation, even though it is one of mine. But I believe in what I’m doing, and though I can borderline martyr complex to some people, I strongly believe in making a difference, big and small, and hopefully inspire others to find their own way as well. Just like she says in the fourth question, I hope to inspire people to find their own voice and way to make a difference with my work too.
Thirdly, as we saw in yesterday’s post about branding and labelling, she shares the sentiments of my old college professor about being myself instead of selling myself. I like to think that branding myself is a way of presenting myself in the best way I can to represent who I am and what I stand for, branding in the sense it communicates an idea and sticks easily. So I hope that when people follow my project and my work, they see a young global nomad out to save the world, get the girl, and come home in time for supper while rocking out and having serious fun.
Lastly, this is what I want to do, and I’m not afraid to be me. A friend once said “It is better to be hated for who I am instead being loved for who I am not” and hey, while you’re following this project blog and my personal blog, you will get 100% of me, no more, no less.