Local author says new book is a guide to becoming a ‘force for change’
by Charli Engelhorn
contributing writer
Aug 02, 2012 | 904 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
“Inside everybody is a strategist waiting to get out, and if people can learn how to think that way, then they will get out and create change,” said Moab resident Celia Alario, a contributor to the book, “Beautiful Trouble.” A book launch will be held Friday, Aug. 3 at the Moab Arts and Recreation Center at 7 p.m. for “Beautiful Trouble,” a collection of principles, insights, strategy tactics, and case studies that examines the clever mixture of human creativity and a desire to facilitate change, according to Alario.

The book does not follow a linear format and rather works similarly to a reference guide. Different concepts and ideas are linked and lead to different areas of the book to create a larger picture of successful creative tactics and how they worked or did not work in real life situations, Alario said.

“People want to create change. So how can we help people isolate the strategy muscle? This book works to guide people in that endeavor in a clever, humorous, and impactful way,” Alario said. “What’s great about the book is you can just open it anywhere and read briefly about a certain action or movement and then flip to another related area and be able to see the connections between all of the different sections and concepts.”

Alario’s piece is entitled, “Stay on Message.” She said that often people will know what their message is but have little understanding of how to deliver it.

“Once someone has decided what their message is and what they can do, they need to stay on message,” said Alario. “They have the opportunity to talk about their message, and it is important to have consistency of message to be the most influential and successful.”

In her day-to-day world, Alario works as a communications consultant and media strategist. She has worked with more than 1,000 clients on public speaking and said she became a fan of this kind of work early on. Andrew Boyd, one of the editors of the book, had worked with Alario and reached out to her to contribute.

Boyd said he had been a student and practitioner of creative expressions of grassroots movements for many years. He put together his first book, “The Activist’s Cookbook,” 15 years ago but noticed that the concepts were changing as he and others continued to learn new strategies and become more creative in their efforts. The idea for “Beautiful Trouble” had been running through his head for the last 10 years, he said.

“Everyone is using art and creative approaches toward the aim of creating change and movement. This book is like a toolbox for many people in those areas and involved in that work,” Boyd said.

However, Boyd said the book is not just for social activists. He said he sees the book really reaching two main audience groups: those already involved and those feeling the first inkling of activism in their lives.

“It can help to expand the repertoire of tactics and ideas for those already involved in environmental and social justice movements and make them smarter in their actions and more effective,” Boyd said. “But it is also designed for people who are feeling the first flush of change, or the student in school and others taking their first baby steps and finding their first voice in activism.”

Alario and Boyd will be in attendance at Friday night’s launch and say they hope the community will come out to learn more about creative movements in communities.

“Many things happening in Moab are emblematic of what’s happening in the world,” Alario said. “In an election year, when we are feeling so many obstacles in our communities, being a force for change can be fun and creative. I hope people will be moved to do a little more than before this year.”

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