On our continual quest to find the worlds most intriguing, inspiring and innovative humans, we found yet another. Someone you have more than likely stumbled across on numerous occasions.
Grab a cup of tea (or a Gelato) and spend 3 minutes with Alissa Walker from Gelatobaby, GOOD and Fast Company. Alissa Walker is a writer, a gelato-eater, and a walker living in LA. We delved a little deeper.
I’m Generation X but I’m Millennial-adjacent and I think I relate much more to that generation’s values.
Where are you right now & how you did you come to be involved:
I’m on a Virgin America flight heading back from speaking at a fantastic conference in Washington DC on cities and technology called Open Cities.
Where would you rather be?:
I’m thrilled to be heading home to Los Angeles to spend the next few weeks studying the city’s culture through a USC/Annenberg Getty Arts Journalism Fellowship. But have to say, seat 6A with wifi and a House marathon on this DirectTV screen is pretty sweet.
Every time we search for inspiring content, we seem to find you looming close by writing inspiring pieces about how we can make things better, be smarter or at least, how we can reduce our impact. How did you come to care so much about earth (when so many really don’t) and what are you doing that you are most proud of?
I wouldn’t say that I really write about the earth, although I’m a big fan. I think I write about creative people who are using their skills to connect people to their community and causes that matter to them in a fun, engaging or interesting way. I’m proud that I can help get the word out about great projects to people who can help take action.
What makes you get up in the morning / think you’ve had a good day:
I have no problem getting up in the morning—that’s when my mind is clearest and I do the best work. I’ve had a good day if I’ve written a little, thought a little, walked a little, laughed a lot, and ended the day with friends and a fantastic meal.
Can you share with us a notable high in your career?
When I got my first essay published as a freelancer, a story in the Los Angeles Times about my brother, Luke Sky Walker, that kickstarted my career:
How about a notable low:
When I had just started out as a freelancer and I had no work and $300 in my bank account.
Any relationship between the two?
Those two moments happened within two weeks of each other. It just goes to show you how quickly your life can change, and that hard work will always be rewarded…eventually. And of course, that Star Wars is awesome.
So if you could fix 1 thing right now, be it community or global… anything, what would you fix?
I’d want more people to realize they could have a happy, fulfilled and more entertaining life if they chose not to drive a car.
If Arnold Schwarzenegger called you tomorrow for some advice on the most important issue in California right now, what you tell him?
Well, I’d tell him I’m glad he’s finally been relieved of his duties! And I’d ask him to tell Jerry Brown to be vigilant about turning our schools into centers for creativity.
Do you have a personal Mission?
Humor can achieve much more than anger.
Do you fill up at BP?
I don’t have a car.
Who do you look up to, or more importantly, who do you follow on Twitter?
I follow about 400 people on Twitter, mostly only people who I’ve met in real life, which include writers and thinkers who I admire, and the organizations that they run. You can check the list here.
We have a saying at 6.2 that we apply to everything we do, (though i’m sure it is not original), we focus on the statement “make it mean something”. You connect with thousnds of people every day all over the world through Fast Company, Good Magazine and Gelatobaby, what are your top 3 articles you have written and in your view, “did they mean something”?
1) The story that acted as a turning point in my career was “Real World Studio” for GOOD’s Design Issue, where I traveled to Hale County, Alabama to observe a group of designers attempt to solve local problems.Writing the story helped them to raise over $40,000 to help connect residents to the municipal water supply, and it made me realize that my writing could actually be a part of the solution for causes I cared about. .
2) “The Fake Freeway Sign That Became a Real Public Service” for my column at GOOD, which is about an artist who made his own interstate sign when he got frustrated by the poor directional signage on an LA freeway. The city didn’t notice for nine months, and it worked so well they left it up for nine years. Such an amazing story.
3) “Why I Write About Design Now” is something I wrote in response to New York’s Design Week, which frames the importance of design through the sale of overpriced chairs. Which it, of course, is not.
Where do we find you online or out and about if we were considering stalking you (you are quite easy to stalk by the way)?
I’m on Facebook and Twitter , and I also take lots of photos at Flickr (click the links).
On a trip to Europe where I was attempting to find myself, my life suddenly snapped into focus when I was in Italy, consuming three to five helpings of gelato a day. I thought it was definitely related so I wanted to find a way to bring gelato into my life daily. You can read the story at my website:
In your view, finish this quote:
”What the world needs more than anything right now is…” gelato, baby.
Thank you Alissa, you can learn more about who Alissa is, what Alissa write‘s, and even see where Alissa lives and works by clicking the links. Don’t forget to follow Alissa on twitter and subscribe to her awesome blog.