creative economy embodied

Your ‘dumb stuff’ opens doors and makes room for you before great people. As soon as you realize it’s not yours to keep, at least not in the creative economy.

I said it.

But King Solomon said the first part. Replace the ‘dumb stuff’ with ‘gift’.

So if you want the attention of eminent people and build wealth while at it, not just make money, don’t hoard it. Use your gift to create solutions to other people’s problems. I should end the story there, but then the creative economy happened.

BCE: Before Creative Economy

Once upon a time, when we completed undergrad degrees, we got absorbed into the system. Then five-figure cheques graced our desks for doing routine work, with little or no creativity. But today our first-class honours papers sit in suitcases we wish to forget.

Thanks to the creative economy, we can reclaim our school fees albeit through what the world once called dumb.

Creative Economy Shenanigan

You have heard of the creative industry. It mostly harbours folks the world once called rejects. The dumb stuff doers. Most are solopreneurs. The meme creators. Photographers. Videographers. Musicians. Spoken word artists. Bloggers. Book authors. Computer game creators. And advert creators who make you rethink your thoughts. Just to name a few.

The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, a permanent intergovernmental body, defines creative economy as ‘an evolving concept which builds on the interplay between human creativity and ideas and intellectual property, knowledge and technology. Such a mouthful. Phew!

But Fine Wealth’s Dictionary by yours truly believes:

Creative economy is turning the once labelled dumb stuff into something the eminent can use and pay you for. Click To Tweet

Dumb enough?

Sorry, I see no better way of defining creativity and how to build wealth using it.

The Stone That Was Rejected

Products in the Creative Economy
Products in the Creative Economy

The system today favours those who gift others solutions from their creative brain. Nothing routine. Just the new. The breath-taking. The same stuff that got you punished for ‘wasting time’ in class.

That dumb stuff can change the economy of your entire generation! If you join the dumb-doers and turn your dumb stuff into a thriving business.

Dumb-doers are those who burnt their mama’s pots countless times. They earned threats, scolds and beatings for it. But have now built cake-making businesses through the mess, sweat and tears. Their story differs, but Tutus Kitchen turned her mess into wealth.

Guys who got in trouble for dancing during class time while they were should have been memorizing the head, thorax and curves of a grasshopper. I wonder if that’s what top influencer moyadavid1 had to endure. He will surprise you! At a cost of course.

Then there’s the Cocktail Empress whose teacher wanted her to study matters concerning ancestors. No offence but the lass was too busy writing novels in her exercise books. Abomination!

Or maybe not. She wanted to share the pleasures of her three Cocktails of love with many other novels on the way!

The list goes on and on. So maybe I will reserve the next paragraph for you. When you are ready to pitch your creative dumb product.

Create Or Die Trying

Sure, your hard-earned skills did not land you the glorified job your teachers mentioned. Count it no loss. You still have that brain. And the mischief I bet. So dust it and aim for the creative economy. That is where your gift, the dumb stuff, sells. It was never yours to keep remember?

Think of it from Curtis James Jackson III’s perspective. Take your story, warn the folks about the hood, spit the story at high speed, and sell the rap back to the hood.

If given the choice to Get Rich or Die Tryin’. Take the former. And that’s just one angle of thriving in the creative economy. There are 359 degrees left!

The 7 Commandments To Thrive In The Creative Economy

Every game has a set of commandments. Follow these to thrive.

First Commandment: Thou Shall Return To Childhood

First, allow yourself to be a child again. The creative economy honours only folks who can be childish. Yes, you read that right.

So, revisit your childhood bucket of dumb stuff and pick something you thought was worth your time. That’s one of the gifts. Then ask Uncle Google for people who have made a name for themselves with that ‘crap’. Then, bask in their glory.

Creativity is aroused through appreciating other people’s work. Especially those in castles you wish to live in. Click To Tweet

Second Commandment: Thou Shall Not Copy

Ok. Movie time is up. Time to work!

Now that you know your dumb stuff helps folks around you get rich, thanks to the Internet, study your predecessors’ style. Master their moves. But don’t stop there. Resist the temptation to present their game to the world as your own. That’s copy-catting. And cheap!

Imitating them may create a temporary name for you, but soon the doors will slam on your face. You don’t want to copy moyadavid1’s dance moves, songs and surprising style to the core. So reinvent it. More on this next.

Third Commandment: Thou Shall Add Your Creative Gene

There’s something special about you, even if you have a twin. You may not have been shot 9 times like 50 Cent, or picked on by your teacher like the Cocktail Empress. But there’s something different about your story, your personality, your fingerprints even. And that’s where your creative gene lies.

Incorporate the unique side of your dumbness into your product. It’s your selling point.

Consider this. If you want to start a ‘surprise your loved one business’ like Moyadavid1, find out what he is NOT doing. Something you believe would make his hustle rock. Extend your research to the Dancing Pallbearers from Ghana, or some Setswana dance or dressing. Every rocking artist with merrymaking as a common denominator.

Study their styles and incorporate the missing ingredients plus your uniqueness into the product you are creating.

Got it?

Fourth Commandment: Thou Shall Stay On Top of The Game

This is where most creatives go wrong. They study. They copy. They add their creative gene. And when they hit the spotlight, they think they will stay there forever.

Wake up and smell the rotting thoughts!

Turbulence is the order of the creative economy. So you have to keep learning from everything nature throws your way. From an insult to the flapping fly in your tea. Even the feel of a worm wiggling up your foot. All these are hints, if you take them kindly.

My_Darling, Fine wealth

Convert them to dance moves, words in your novel, a fashion design or a computer game. Better still create an advert to post on a billboard. The creative economy is for daredevils.

Fifth Commandment: Thou Shall Acknowledge Competitors

I wish this wasn’t so, but the creative industry’s entry-level is both low and high. Low enough for everyone willing to act upon their dumb stuff to enter. But high enough to keep the copycats, lazy bones, and those too good to embrace their stupidity out.

That’s why you hear of creatives acing the spotlight with their debut song, never to be heard again. The embodiment of a one-night stand. Or Instagram influencers with a dead following.

The C in Creative Economy stands for Cruel. Click To Tweet

Many have warmed their way into the wallets of eminent folks, just to fall out because they ignored their competition. Beware!

With an entry-level so low, you can’t afford to sleep on the hustle. There is always a new guy entering the block. How long you can survive his freshness depends on your ability to study him fast and keep your stuff even greener.

Rest you forget, some creatives have copied their role models, become their major competitors, and then beaten them at their game.

Sixth Commandment: Thou Shall Invest Elsewhere

It is foolish to carry all your eggs in one basket. Harsh, but true. This has been the next greatest fall of many creatives, after the forever famous dream.

The law of entrepreneurship demands that you channel your wealth into various streams. That way, if one dries, another services your lifestyle. And trust me, your lifestyle in the presence of fame and money does change.

You could invest in the stock market by buying about two stocks with the guidance of a financial advisor. Maybe even start in a low-risk environment like the Money Market Fund. You can then digress into real estate. And if you have the guts or the know-how, go for Cryptocurrency.

But first, ensure you understand what your money will bring back home before you send it out.

Seventh Commandment: Thou Shall Create Products For Others

Once you thrive in the creative economy, take advantage of your big name and help others after you. But there is a catch. I will explain it with the product creation story.

This worked for me after self-publishing my first book, Millions of Robots. I realized that there were people wanting to write books but they didn’t have the time or skills. So I became a ghost-writer. I took ideas from a simple conversation with my client, created a book and named them as the author. I made sure they got at least the first 50 printed copies of the book so they could sell and start recovering the amount they had spent on me. This is how I thrive in the creative economy.

The Shocking Product Creation Story

If you are not a writer or don’t feel blessed enough to thrive in the creative economy, there’s still hope for you. Using the catch I mentioned earlier. I came across it a few days ago and am yet to recover from how stupid I felt.

Trust me, you will too.

Have you seen the hundreds of fitness training programs online guiding you into the six-pack world? Do you wonder why they seem different yet accomplish the same goal?

This is the shocking cruelty of the creative economy.

An ordinary guy, let’s call him Bob, buys a fitness program. A certain creative’s product. He begins working out and falls in love with the toning abs in such a way that he can’t tear himself from it.

Many days into the transformation Bob decides he wants his money back. But the money-back guarantee period is long past. And well, the product actually worked for him. Then his creative brain takes him to his Instagram account. The last photo was that of his shirtless plump body at the beach, with a #chubbyBobby comment from one of his lean buddies.

It was a joke then. But now it’s vengeance time!

He uploads a few before-and-after photos on Instagram showing off his newly formed six-pack abs. Bob then boasts of his daily exercise routine, meal plans adopted from the fitness program, and even shares his body shaming story. But he doesn’t disclose anything about the program.

He goes on to demonstrate how he devised a way to keep off the floor during sit-ups and still get results. It’s true. He has been working with another unfit buddy as his free project. And the transformation is solid!

This testimony is on his fitness blog. Tweeted on his Twitter account. Demonstrated on his YouTube Channel. And showed off to his 5000 followers on Instagram. All free dumb stuff.

Talk of paying it forward.

Then he starts free online-gym classes on YouTube with the buddy recording the sessions on a rented iPhone. The 7-minutes belly blasters that work if you do them daily. You and I follow Bob for months enjoying the free training. And ogling at his six-pack abs.

Then one day, boom!

Bob pitches his own fitness program. “Bye Belly. Hello B-Abs!” Starting at $6.99. Fair enough for the devote Bouncing Bob’s Followers. Case closed.

What you do with this story is totally your business. May you thrive in the creative economy!

People who care always share!

Magdalene Kamau

Also known as My_Darling, is a ghostwriter, business mentor and motivational speaker who advocates for turning talents and passions into products of service to others while making a profit while at it.

Twitter | Blog

2 Comments

  1. Awesome advice right there!
    And love the way you say it.
    Thank you!

    1. Thanks, Jenni!
      The bitter truth for those of us in the creative industry has been hidden for rather too long, I fear.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.