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Marissa Brassfield is a productivity expert, high-performance author and communication efficiency specialist. She holds efficiency workshops to supercharge teams in large to medium-sized businesses.
What is unique that's not in your bio?
I can pitch (fastpitch softball) with both hands. I was a four-sport varsity athlete in high school. I'm left-handed, but do nearly everything (except write) right-handed. I shoot guns. My 18th birthday present from my parents (thanks, Mom and Dad!) was a .40 Sig Sauer P229 with a ton of silvertip hollow points. I love cars, especially fast European ones.
What's your favorite accomplishment?
Honestly, joining the editorial team of Trend Hunter. It's symbolized not just the standard goal of having a good job in my field of study, but embarking on an awesome career that meshes perfectly with my strengths, interests and personal goals. I'm living the dream!
How do you define cool?
Cool is something that's undiscovered, something that's a bit different from what everyone is doing. It's also the pursuit of interests or hobbies that are different and unexpected, without regard to how those interests are perceived by outsiders. Sometimes what I'd define as cool is uncool to the mainstream--that's the point.
What is your secret to uncovering trends?
I zero in on innovators who have the ability to dare to dream in ways that seem impossible or unfathomable and the fearlessness to pursue those dreams and bring them to fruition, if even just through a concept rendering. So many revolutionary inventions throughout history have at one point been dreams that seemed impossible or improbable, but they're here because of fearless innovators.
What do you enjoy most about Trend Hunter?
I like the way Trend Hunter feels like a true community, even though technically we're a virtual one. There's 23,000 of us from all over the world, all with different backgrounds and lifestyles and offline interests.
It's neat to be able to connect with so many different types of people in a single day and all agree--or not--that something is awesome. I can't wait to meet as many of our writers as I can!
What is your favorite trend?
There are a ton, for some pretty diverse reasons.
I'm interested in environmental issues in general, but I prefer positive, constructive solutions. I like Michael Barton's idea to take the floating junk in the Pacific Gyre and create a manmade island and habitat for wildlife. And Emily Cummins' solar-powered fridge for developing communities is a great example of simple and culturally valuable innovation.
I am also a big fan of goof-proof gadgets that I can clean using products and appliances I already have, so I love the possibilities of the Seal Shield line that we saw at CES 2009.
What GustOrganics is doing with their all-organic bar and restaurant is also spectacular. There's nothing like fresh, organic ingredients in a cocktail, and it's far easier in a dismal economic climate to cop out and buy syrupy store brands for mixers. I hope more restaurants take pride in their brand enough to make similar efforts towards purity and high-quality product.
I also love that the lines are increasingly becoming blurred between automobiles and fashion. After all, isn't a supercar like the Lamborghini Murcielago one of the most opulent and grandiose accessories one could wear?
What are your tips for writing a juicy post?
Show readers why something is new, unique and innovative--and do so in the most concise way possible. Anyone can convince someone that something is cool in a page. But what about two paragraphs? This isn't always possible, but when it's done well, it's a pleasure to read for both casual readers and word nerds like me.
It's also important to maintain a positive and inspiring angle. It's easy to spread negativity and gloom--just read the headlines of nearly any news source or tabloid. I'm interested in the bright possibilities of the future, and that comes out in the articles I like to edit.
How do you reset to be creative?
Champagne. And nature. I'm grateful to live in a part of the world where there is no shortage of good wine, perfect weather and plenty of places to go for a walk or have a picnic. Balancing my tech-savvy day with a heaping dose of nature is not only soul-fulfilling to me, but it also makes me appreciate both luxuries. I couldn't live without either!
What inspires or excites you?
The future. It's this big blank slate where anything is possible if you want it badly enough. That's thrilling.
Predict something awesome for 2020?
My wine estate with a sweet house that's fully outfitted with an intelligent wireless system, including a holographic videoconferencing center. Oh, and a classic car collection that includes my favorites from 1940-1969.