Why not celebrate life by giving thanks? My 2,800 word “thank you” list.

by Craig McBreen · 84 comments · General

I’ve been holding onto this list for a while, but thought today was an appropriate time to post something like this.

(Note on this post. My father passed away on 2/7/12. This post was published the week of his passing): My father passed away this week. There is actually some solace in that as he had been suffering for way too long and his battle is finally over. If there is anything positive I can take away from this experience, it’s that I’ve developed an entirely new level of respect for my mother and my wife. If there is one thing they have taught me, it’s to focus on other people, not yourself. They might be selfless to a fault.

I’ve posted how I feel about him here, so today I really do want to focus on the positive.

Even though my father is gone, I know he would want to give me a swift kick in the ass and tell me to get back in with guns a blazin’! :) Well, that might be an exaggeration, but I do think this is a very appropriate time to simply thank some of the people who’ve helped me out in my short stint online. (just about five months so far). So, here goes …

Trying to carve out an online niche as a blogger is not easy. Some say jump right in. Others advise meticulous, careful planning. Either way, it becomes a process of self-discovery, finding that elusive personal statement that defines you and what you’re all about. That oh-so-hard-to-find unique selling proposition. It’s not easy, and this is just step one!

I have not been to Blog World nor have I met, in person, any of the online mentors mentioned below. But each individual has doled out oh-so-precious advice and inspiration to me both directly and indirectly, through their blogs (and podcasts). Basically providing value through their own, unique online presence. So, I bow down and give thanks, of course hoping to meet each fine peep at some point in time.

This is a long list. There are many more people I would like to thank, I just didn’t want to write a mini novel. I thought this was long enough.

This is where it all started.

[Srinivas Rao]
Skool of Life
I started listening to Srini’s informative BlogcastFM last May. I listened to just about each and every show, really! It was hard to digest all this information at first, with diverging opinions and strategies, but Srini’s interviewing style helped me sift through it all. For anyone entering the blogging world, I highly recommend this podcast.

What The Interviewer taught me:
Stop. Look. Listen. If you are trying to get your name out there, don’t focus on the A-Listers. Instead, focus on the greenhorns, budding bloggers, the emerging talent. Kiss lots of digital babies. After all, baby bloggers might become big bloggers, right? New bloggers can become readers, teachers, and sometimes they need help too. It’s all good! I’ve learned quite a bit from his podcast and I also relate to a guy who says he never fit in, obsesses, and has issues with authority.

[Danny Brown]
This guy has experience, no doubt.
Oh, and he has a very informative blog too. If you want to dive into social media, please do yourself a favor and start perusing Danny’s blog. It’s chock-full of content about marketing, PR, and social media of course. The cherry on top? The comments. He is also a gifted writer.

What The Scotsman has taught me
Emotional marketing is nothing new, but there is great, untapped potential in Emotional Connection Marketing. Through a bit of research and using the tools readily available, connect with the client based on their wants and needs, NOT what we think they should be attracted to. A new paradigm for making that a lasting connection.

Oh, he’s also a great all around guy and can really stir it up with Gini Dietrich, but it’s all in fun. :) You may have seen them bantering about.

[John Falchetto]
I first heard John interviewed on Srini’s excellent BlogcastFM. After I read John’s post, The 4-Hour Workweek ruined my life, I was hooked. John is a creative and skilled writer, has great insight and offers sage advice to up-and-comers like me. His blog has plenty of helpful information too.

What The Coach taught me:
Building an online presence, well, it’s not so easy. It calls for reflection and takes quite a bit of effort on your part. But it is all about You being You. Not fake, phony, or manufactured, but genuine, real, sincere. How you present yourself online is so important. Figure out who the heck you are first, and stay away from job titles, for this brings trust young Jedi.

[Gini Dietrich]
Spin Sucks
When I first heard that Bill Dorman was on Gini Dietrich’s must meet list, I gotta admit, I was kind of jealous. I mean, I’m a fan of the guys mentioned above, but this is the big G.D. we’re talking about. C’mon now!

As I stated here. I am now a member of a very large and growing group, The Gini Dietrich Fan Club. Gini is not only one of the most astute and prolific bloggers out there, she is also known to be extremely giving and very accessible. She has honestly helped me more than she knows.

What Aunt Gini taught me
Sometimes you just have to test and see what works. Her blog is focused on PR, but it’s not all PR all the time. It’s about making things happen in business, leadership, and she often throws in a bit of craziness. She and Danny are good at inserting “goofy.” We like that.

How to stay on task. As an avid cyclist, I personally wonder how she gets it all done, but she does and just watching her in action over at Spin Sucks is motivation enough. I also commend her for being honest about being an introvert. Hey, there are many of us out there and her honesty on the topic is refreshing.

*I would also like to say a big, “thank you” to Lisa Gerber for initiating the interview process and suggesting a guest post on Spin Sucks. Thanks, Lisa.

[Bill Dorman]
Dot me. That is all… (Formerly: The Invisible Blogger)
Bill wrote a post many months ago titled, “Do I know you?” Wanting to know a bit more about us, and letting us know a bit more about him. This post in particular resonated with me, or at least motivated me to comment. Little did I know that I would receive a reply within 10 minutes, and a very helpful response at that. I had commented on a few blogs before, here and there, but this was the first time I took the time to actually put a few thoughts together and it felt good to get a quick, thoughtful response. You see, Bill is really, really great at that thing called community engagement.

What the former “Invisible Blogger” taught me:
This entire process is more about building relationships than anything, and I think Ari Herzog’s post sums up Bill’s approach better than I ever could. When I first started really researching and looking over many blogs, Bill’s friendly face was always there in the comments section. Not only a prolific commenter, but a guy that was taking the time to connect with people. So Bill taught me to be SOCIAL. Let’s call him Yoda.

[Nancy Davis]
I visited Nancy’s blog early on, before I started blogging and I soon discovered you get a no bullshit writing style with Nancy, that’s for sure. She writes very honest, from the heart posts too, which certainly takes a bit of courage, but there is also plenty of inspiration in her writing.

What Nancy taught me
Well, all about transparency. That it’s okay to bring forth a little (or a lot) of honestly with your writing. You just don’t know who it might resonate with. She also has a great sense of humor and we know its okay to discuss old stories about school days, big hair rock and how ridiculous we all looked back in the day. Nancy made me admit that I used to wear parachute pants, too.

[The JackB]
If you visit his blog you will be richly rewarded. Trust me! Here is a guy who writes about anything and everything, and he does it oh so well. And you talk about street cred, he is a writer and author of 39 unpublished books and three screenplays. I think a writer like Jack commands a certain level of respect.

I honestly wish I would visit his blog more often, but there are only so many hours in the day. I’m a fan and my wife is a fan.

What Mr. Jack taught me
Just write. After he made a comment on my blog about free-form writing (or maybe it was his blog) … anyway, I digress. After he told me I should just sit down and write, well, I sat down and wrote about whatever came to mind. I still do and it helps immensely. Thanks, Jack!

[Kaarina Dillabough]
Kaarina is focused on helping people achieve their goals and dreams. It says so on her site and I believe her. Like John and Bill, Kaarina was leaving well written, insightful comments on many of the blogs I was frequenting. Great comments about true change, and what it takes to make those changes within. I also love her manifesto about being social in “real life”.

What Kaarina taught me:
I have seen her all over the place, and wherever I do, her messages are always infused with positive, habit-changing, constructive advice. Change not only requires a commitment on your part, a decision to do IT. You need to frame it in a constructive and positive way, with the future in mind. Like her tagline says, When you decide2do the follow-up actions will almost naturally come into play. Her writing is enlightening and inspirational. Always packed with good, positive energy, and EXTREMELY helpful. We often underestimate our true potential and we need other people to remind us that we can achieve a level of success never thought possible. Kaarina does that very well.

[Mark Schaefer]
{Grow} Blog
Mark wrote a book on Twitter and he has quite a large following, but when I followed him, he followed me. This is before I had a blog, and I think I had three followers at the time. :) I gotta admit that kind of made my day. Okay! Enough pandering you say. The thing is, Mark’s Grow blog is rich, deep, and super-duper-informative. There is so much information here that I’ve really just started to scratch the surface, but I’ll keep at it, I’m “growing.” Wink. Wink.

What the Executive Director taught me
How to use Twitter, of course :) I’m on my way, but I have a long way to go. He talks about the importance of writing from your perspective. To write a blog post that only you could write. Use your history, your perspective, your uniqueness to your advantage. Leverage the medium using this distinctiveness, but stick to marketing 101. That is, learn how to apply these great new tools, but use the marketing fundamentals that never change. I could go on. :)

[Marcus Sheridan]
The Sales Lion
As he says on his site, “If I teach it, I’ve lived it.” Marcus believes in the power of personal experience (he has oodles of that) and helping others. He’s all about making people shine; on blogs, business or everyday life. My first exposure to Marcus was of course through BlogcastFM. His enthusiasm is infectious. I want to become somewhat proficient at this blogging thing and become a better public speaker. He does both extremely well.

What The Lion taught me:
Jump in. After all, he is the founder of a pool company. :) He went from starting a pool industry blog (when no one else was) to the ever popular Sales Lion. He did this with little technical knowledge, but a burning desire — To. Help. People. Succeed! It shows in everything he does and frankly this guy just motivates me. Plus he gave me a call one day and gave me the kick in the pants I needed.

[Al Smith]
The CARE movement
Like Al, my wake up call came at about the age of 41. My realization was more about dealing with fear and embracing discomfort, but I can certainly relate to a guy who decided, fairly late in life to make a difference. To just get out there and “do!”

What Mr. Smith taught me:
Focus more on others than yourself. If you think you can make a real difference in the world, well get out and do it. Wake up with some gratitude instead of waking up with a bad attitude. I love that message.

Check out Al’s mission here

[Ashley Ambirge]
The Middle Finger Project
As her blog title might indicate, Ashley is candid, outspoken and certainly uninhibited. with an unbridled writing style that is engaging, inspirational and, well, downright helpful. It is her writing that sucks you in and doesn’t let go (she would have thought of something better to say here). And believe me, it entertains. Ashley is all about teaching people how to live up to their potential. If you want a web presence, don’t try to emulate her writing style, (you can’t) but do read for inspiration and just enough salty language to make this guy happy :) I simply love the writing.

What The Bold One taught me:
Take control of your life and start living on your own terms. Stop overanalyzing everything, grow some cojones, go out, and do it! Create the life you envision and leverage the technology to get paid for it. Know that building an online presence takes time, so don’t get discouraged, instead keep on truckin’. You have to stand for something, no matter what you’re doing, it’s how you shine. As the title of her ebook says, “You Don’t Need A Job, You Need Guts”.

[Frank Dickinson]
Frank was one of the first people to follow me back on Twitter. You know, when I was a nobody. A wanna be blogger without a home. But old Frank reached out. I’ve talked and Skyped with more than a few people along the way, but frank spent a good hour on the phone with me doling out precious advice.

What I learned from Mr. Frank.
Well he gave me so much information in our conversation that I’m still sorting through the notes. Well, some of his tidbits of advice are on my monthly to-do lists. You also might want to check him out on Twitter.

[Lori Gosselin]
Lori was the first person to invite me to Google+ (I still don’t have the hang of it:)) and she even invited me to guest post at her place. Speaking of her place, “Life, for instance” is a blog for just about everybody, really. She’ll certainly make you feel right at home.

What Lori taught me:
Focus on community. Her blog is a gathering place and she certainly knows how to keep the conversation going AND foster community. Check it out, you won’t be sorry.

There are many more intelligent, inspiring and thoughtful advisors who continue to teach me through their great writing and online presence. Here’s to a follow up post ‘cause I wanna give credit where credit is due. AND I have missed too many people, but this post is way over 2,000 words. I HAD to stop! :)

Yes, I have an A-List and the people above are just part of that growing list. I would love to make this a series, so please let me know what you think of posts highlighting other bloggers. Is this a good idea? I have others I want to mention here, but as I stated, I don’t want to write a novel.

[I also wanted to give a special thanks to my wife, Mary Anne]
She means the world to me and without her I would never be able to do any of this. Nada. Zilch! She’s not only supported my mom and dad in a time of need, she’s supported my crazy blogging effort since the very beginning.

How about you? Have the people above inspired or influenced you?

Who is on your mentor or inspirational list?

Is there anyone outside of the blogosphere who has inspired you?

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{ 80 comments… read them below or add one }

Lori Gosselin February 8, 2012 at 10:48 pm

I’m so sorry for your loss Craig! It can’t have been easy to come back here and to this today.

I’m very honored to be included on your list and among people I admire so well. This is am amazing list! I’m impressed with the time and thought you have put into it.
Hang in there – and keep up the good work!
Lori Gosselin recently posted..Are You Lucky?My Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 7:10 pm

Hi Lori,

Thank you. It’s hard, but after about a week away I thought this was a good time for a “thank you” post.

Well, each individual on that list, including you, has helped or inspired me in some way.

Thanks for the visit.


Jacko February 13, 2012 at 2:54 pm

Excellent concept. Its is foolish to believe that you can obtain happiness by obtaining things. Actually you will obtain the opposite.

People worry too much about what they don’t have and neglect and over look what they do.

F.O.C.U.S. people.
Forever Overcome Conflict Under Stress©
Jacko recently posted..Hierarchy of Website NeedsMy Profile


Al Smith February 8, 2012 at 11:08 pm

Craig. What can I say, man. My heart goes out to you and your family. I am both sad and extremely grateful after reading your amazing post. This is a great way to honor your dad and do what he would have wanted you to do. So grateful to be on this incredible list of people. I am proud of you and very proud to call you a true friend.
I have really enjoyed our talks, especially regarding our fathers. Thank you.

Take care, brother. God bless you.

Al Smith recently posted..Let’s Go – Join the CARE-a-van!My Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 7:12 pm

Hi Al,

I really appreciate the kind words here, Sir!

Well I put you on the list because you’re one of the most inspirational and real people I know. Very glad to know you and I look forward to hearing more about your plans.

I’ve enjoyed our conversations too, my friend. Thanks again.


Bill Dorman February 8, 2012 at 11:29 pm

I wondered where you had been, so thanks for letting us know. Even though it was your dad’s time, it is never easy to let them go. Hold onto the happy memories.

If you want something uplifting, think about Adam Toporek and I traipsing around shooting shotguns this Saturday. He said I could shoot a can off his head. We are getting together at a clay pigeon shoot. He said he wouldn’t shoot real pigeon’s because he is a vegetarian.

Now that Gini has met me, she’s a little more guarded about publicly saying who she has to meet. I thought I had told her it was my high school picture I was using for an Avatar? Sheeesh……

Hang in there buddy, and I’ll take back what I said about you at Kaarina’s place.
Bill Dorman recently posted..Once you go black you never go backMy Profile


Ari Herzog February 9, 2012 at 2:03 am

Glad to see you on top of people mentioning you on the web, Bill, for I was about to shout out on Twitter you got more praise and press!

Craig, thanks for the above linkback; and sorry to read about your dad’s passing. I lost mine in 1995 and not a day goes by when I don’t think about him.
Ari Herzog recently posted..Introducing Mitch Joel: Monday Muse #1My Profile


Bill Dorman February 9, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Thanks for the thought; I’m sure you are aware I am not on top of much….:).

I recall the story about your dad as well; it’s good you can still hold onto the memories.
Bill Dorman recently posted..Once you go black you never go backMy Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 7:22 pm

Hey Ari,

Bill has some special kind of radar and he can detect whenever his name is mentioned. When he does, he’s all over it. ;)

You’re most welcome. I really enjoyed reading that post and have gone back several times to re-read.

Thanks for the kind words. You and your father must have had a great relationship. That’s great to hear … you always have those good times to remember.


Hajra February 9, 2012 at 8:01 am

And the Santa avatar shows up again! ;) Have you taken down your Christmas lights Dorman? ;)
Hajra recently posted..Blowing My Trumpet… Loud!My Profile


Bill Dorman February 9, 2012 at 3:33 pm

The lights are on but nobody’s home…..:). Adam tells me it is only the CommentLuv commenting sites, but heck if I know what to do about it. It just might have to be Christmas all year long, huh?
Bill Dorman recently posted..Once you go black you never go backMy Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 7:33 pm

I think it takes a while to propagate over at gravatar.com, so when the old santa Bill expires I think you’re in business. Shouldn’t be too much longer.


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 7:23 pm

Yes, what is up with Santa Dorman?


Hajra February 9, 2012 at 7:27 pm

He is all geared up for next Christmas!
Hajra recently posted..Blowing My Trumpet… Loud!My Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 7:35 pm

By the time the old avatar appears it’ll be time for Santa again. :)

Bill Dorman February 9, 2012 at 9:26 pm

Ho ho ho…..
Bill Dorman recently posted..Once you go black you never go backMy Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 7:18 pm

Hi Bill,

Yes, after about a week I was wondering if anyone had noticed. ;)

There are plenty of great memories, that’s for sure.

I’m trying to picture you and Adam with shotguns. That’s a pretty scary visual, really. But, seriously, I’ve always wanted to go skeet shooting, so would love to hear about it. I guess a post is in order? I’m with Adam though, I can’t even kill spiders … have to rescue my wife, capture and release. A Paper cup is my weapon of choice. :)

Well, Gini already spilled the beans. :)

Thanks for the kind words, Sir.


nancyadavis February 9, 2012 at 1:30 am


First of all, my condolences in the loss of your father. From your previous posts about him he sounds like he was a great man.

I am honored to be in such good company here. For me, I am just a chick from Jersey who loves to write. I am grateful that I have met folks like you who have got something from it. Meeting you has made me a better writer. You have helped me in many ways.

Speaking of high school, I just discovered an old folder full of poetry I wrote in my sophomore year of high school. Talk about awkward! I might be persuaded to post one of the better ones, but I may need bacon and a pic of you in those parachute pants!

What a great surprise tonight! Grateful as always for your friendship!
nancyadavis recently posted..Chasing LaddersMy Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 11:39 pm

Hi Nancy,

Thanks for the kind words. He did a lot of good things in his own quiet way.

Well, you are someone who has helped in many ways and one of the benefits of social is finding quality people and you’re good people.

Well, if you post that you really do have some courage! I came across some stuff I wrote to my wife way back … almost comical. :)

I do actually have some old pics of me that I’ll probably be placing online and maybe using in a talk. (Fat kid pics and bad pants pics.)

Thanks again!


Jack@TheJackB February 9, 2012 at 1:31 am

Hi Craig,

I am very sorry for your loss and hope that you feel the good wishes that come from your “virtual” friends.

I am honored to be on this list. You have a better understanding of this whole social media monstrosity than you realize. Keep writing and I will keep reading.
Jack@TheJackB recently posted..The Dark Underbelly of Social MediaMy Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 11:43 pm

Hi Jack,

Thanks, Sir. I’m certainly getting a lot of support here and really do appreciate that.

It’s funny that I finally have a list, huh? I really did want to thank everyone here, and you where one of the first people I started engaging with online, and I remember thinking, this isn’t so bad. ;)

I’m glad you think I have a handle on this social monster. Sometimes I wonder.

“Keep writing and I will keep reading.”
–Well, I’ll do the same. :)


Jack@TheJackB February 11, 2012 at 4:45 am

I don’t think you have a handle on it, I know.
Jack@TheJackB recently posted..Is There A Benefit To Paying for Twitter Followers?My Profile


Craig McBreen February 13, 2012 at 11:15 pm

I’m just trying to get back up to speed right now.


Danny Brown February 9, 2012 at 2:35 am

Hi mate,

I wish I could have been writing this sincere thank you in very different circumstances. It’s been an absolute privilege getting to know you in the short time we have had, and I’m always happy to help (and be helped through that).

The fact people think so highly of you as they do in that short period of time speaks volumes of the man you called father and the man everyone can see in you.

Here’s to both of you, sir.
Danny Brown recently posted..Collaborative Marketing and the Natural Progression to Real Customer SatisfactionMy Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 11:49 pm

Hi Danny,

So do I, but you are most welcome. It’s been great getting to know you as well and we all know you’re one of those guys who will help. You’ve given me some great advice on this short journey and I am definitely glad I know you.

I really did just want to say thanks to people who have helped and pushed me to get better at taming this social media monster.

My father was a great role model and I’ll be toasting to him over and over the next few weeks/months.

Thanks again for the kind words, Danny. Appreciate you coming by.


Kaarina Dillabough February 9, 2012 at 2:40 am

Craig, words fail at a time like this. Even the deepest, most meaningful, well-intended words of condolence can’t erase the pain the a loved one’s passing brings. I can only hope our words provide a small measure of comfort to you, as we send support and love your way.

I’m honoured to have been included in your list, and among such amazing company. You are so generous to have taken the time to recognize those who’ve played a part in your journey, and for those of us whom you’ve mentioned, well…many before me have said it beautifully. I’m grateful. I’m honoured. I’m proud to be your friend, and to have played even a small part in that journey. I’m raising a toast to you and your dad. Love, Kaarina
Kaarina Dillabough recently posted..Jokes, Jammin and Jingleballs – A Jocose tribute to the Letter JMy Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 11:53 pm

Hi Kaarina,

They certainly can’t erase the pain, but it is great to know people care and it’s very cool to read the responses here. Makes me feel good about the people I’ve come to know.

Well, you certainly deserve it! Just glad I know you and I do need a kick in the shins every once in a while. ;)

Thanks again, Kaarina. I’ll be raising a few toasts myself in the coming weeks.


Margie Clayman February 9, 2012 at 3:03 am

I am so sorry for your loss Craig, but what an amazing way to turn a sad time into something beautiful! So glad I know you. ((hugs))


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 11:57 pm

Hi Margie,

Thank you. I’ve had this one in the queue for a bit and figured this was the best time. Most of the people are bloggers I came to know pretty early on, but there are many I’ve met fairly recently (like you) that I’m sure glad to know. Thanks!


Joe D. February 9, 2012 at 3:38 am

Sorry for your loss, Craig. I’m sure you’re heartbroken. I can’t know what you are going through. I talk to my dad just about every day, and have coffee with him at least a couple of times a week, so I’m sure there’s a big hole in your life right now.

Hopefully, the words of your on-line friends can bring comfort to you. Prayers to you and your family.
Joe D. recently posted..This Is Not Your Grandfather’s “Job Security”My Profile


Craig McBreen February 9, 2012 at 11:59 pm

Hi Joe,

Thank you for the kind words. It’s funny, when I was younger, my father and I barely talked, but from my mid twenties on we became really good friends. Funny, huh?

Great to read through these responses, yes.

Thanks again and best to you.


John Falchetto February 9, 2012 at 6:53 am

Hi Craig,

I’m really sorry for your loss, please accept my deepest condoleances for your father.

As Margie said you have an amazing way of reframing that time into a beautiful celebration of life.

What I would say, and I’m sure most of the people on this list will also, is that you have influenced us, we are all influencing each other online. This space would be very different without you.
John Falchetto recently posted..From being hunted by tribes to building one: lessons from the desert to build a tribe for your businessMy Profile


Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 12:03 am

Hi John,

Thank you. The reframing was easy … I figured it was about time I publicly thanked many of the people who have helped and inspired me. I was itching to get this post out.

That’s nice of you to say. I hope I can influence a few out there … as many here have done for me.

Thanks again for the kind words.


Hajra February 9, 2012 at 8:00 am

Hey Craig,

My deepest condolences for your loss; it is hard to let them go but yes, you have good memories left behind; hold onto them.

I loved the post. This is such a wonderful tribute to all of the blogging buddies everyone has. I did a similar post when I finished one year in the blogging world. Looks like we have some people in common to be thankful to!

I am just thankful that some of them come across my blog and have nice thing to say about me and my work; which I myself am confused about most of the times. I am so thankful that I don’t live close by. They might hit me with rocks if I did. And I haven’t met any, so I really don’t know what they are going to do when they actually meet me – strangle for being so crazy and maybe even chop my fingers off for typing such long comments that takes longer to read than the post itself (that won’t be a problem here obviously, it is hard to beat 2800 words!)

But yes, they are lovely people and as my mom says “Be thankful they don’t know you in person; otherwise, they might never visit you ever again!”. Man, I have to meet you all some day to prove otherwise. I talk much more than I write, but yes, please don’t strangle me and then I will write another longer thank you post! Maybe I will beat 2800 words (that’s a dream) or just have Jack write it for me ;)

Thanks for such a lovely thank you post. I just so glad I stumbled across (just stumble upon stumble; actual stumble) your blog. It is a pleasure reading your work (though not so much when you draw! ;) )

Best wishes for a wonderful blogging life ahead!
Hajra recently posted..Will they call you over for a bloggers party?My Profile


Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 12:07 am

Hi Hajra,

Thank you. And yes, I have plenty of great memories.

Yes, many people to be thankful for. And very glad I now know you! Most of the individuals are people I met early on and my mentor list now seems to be growing exponentially!

I love the stuff you write and maybe that’s why so many like to visit your place. I’m not sure anyone would want to strangle you or chop off your fingers … it just cracks me up that you wrote that. ;)

If I continue to draw maybe someone out there will want to chop my fingers off. :)

Glad to know you and thanks!


Hajra February 10, 2012 at 7:57 am

I feel I just annoy so many, they come back to return the gesture! But yes, I am glad they are so nice to me :)

We could have a vote on who people think should have their fingers chopped off… Lol, I just read that out loud and it sounds terrible! See, what sounds nice in our head doesn’t always sound nice…

Lovely to know you too! :)
Hajra recently posted..Old enough for the online world?My Profile


Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 7:51 pm

I would say that is a blog post in the making, “Vote on who people think should have their fingers chopped off.” It might be the ultimate link bait, but I’d say you’d attract some eyeballs. ;)


Hajra February 10, 2012 at 7:55 pm

You actually did give me a blog idea! :D

Though yes, the title though attractive, is a little gruesome!
Hajra recently posted..Old enough for the online world?My Profile

Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 8:01 pm

Run with it! :) I’m looking forward to this.

Betsy Cross February 9, 2012 at 9:31 am

Thinking of you Craig. You are very blessed to be comforted by the strength of your mom and wife. I’m in awe that you turned your energy outward to show gratitude when your inclination might be to be still and thoughtful and less expressive right now. My parents are two of my best friends and my life will change dramatically when I can’t call or visit them anymore. It makes me so happy that you had a great life with your dad. :)


Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 12:10 am

Hi Betsy,

They are strong people, no doubt. As I wrote, I have so much more respect for them now.

Most of the people listed helped me early on, and I’ve been itching to get this post out. As I mentioned above, my mentor list now seems to be growing exponentially!

Yes, I do have great memories. Very glad to know you and thanks again for the kind words.


Claudia February 9, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Craig, I am deeply sorry for the loss of your Dad in your life. He must have been very proud of his family…you honor him so beautifully here…that is not new behavior on your part…it is something that you learned at the knee of your parents…how to honor those you love. He would be proud…
Your positive approach to life, your enthusiasm for taking the bull by the horns and running with it are all so inspiring Craig…I so enjoy stopping by your home here and getting a pep talk. Today’s lovely post was not exception. You and I are very much on the same page when it comes blogging mentors….I love each and every one of the people that you are grateful for in your blogging life. You are a wise man!
Thank you for sharing a part of your life that must still feel very tender and fragile right now. My thoughts are with you and your family. Your family here in the blog-o-sphere are here for you!
Claudia recently posted..Tell Your Dentist Why They Should Be on FacebookMy Profile


Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 12:14 am


He was a quiet guy, but always did the right thing and was great to be around. We will really, really miss him.

Glad you like coming by and getting a pep talk. I’ve been inspired by many and want to do the same. And, it’s about time I thanked some of the people who helped me, especially early on.

Thanks for the kind words, Claudia. And yes, some very good people to know. Very glad to know you as well!


Bryan Thompson February 9, 2012 at 3:22 pm

Hi Craig, that’s a great list of bloggers there! I have a similar experience as you in most of these guys (Srinivas, Marcus, and Lori for sure). They hooked me in and were so good with updates and with getting back to everyone. Sometimes, my schedule doesn’t allow me to until much later. I’m working to resolve that, but these guys are great places to get inspired! And there’s no shortage of inspiration on CraigMcBreen.com either. ;)
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Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 12:18 am

Hi Bryan,

Yes, a great list. :) Srinivas, Marcus, and Lori have helped me quite a bit. My list is growing by the day though, and you’re someone I’ve met fairly recently who I’m very glad to know.

Thanks for stopping by.


Srinivas February 9, 2012 at 4:54 pm


First off let me say how sorry I am for your loss. It’s a reminder to treasure the time we do have with our parents and how much of a role they play in our lives even if we don’t always see eye to eye with them.

For you to have interpreted this way by giving thanks to all the people on this list makes me feel lucky to have a person like you in my life and to call you a friend. There’s nothing more rewarding to me than knowing that I’ve had a positive impact on persons’s life.
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Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 12:21 am


Thank you. I never saw eye to eye with my dad when I was younger. It wasn’t until my mid 20s really when we became closer and in the last few years we had some great times together.

I really did want to get this post out, as you and the others mentioned have helped me in so many ways.

Very glad you know you as well!

“There’s nothing more rewarding to me than knowing that I’ve had a positive impact on persons’s life.”


Rasheed Hooda February 9, 2012 at 8:47 pm

Hey Craig,

Sorry to hear about your dad, but like you said, it’s for the best. I lost my dad 20 years ago and I wasn’t able to get back home in time for the funeral, so it was tough. It always is.

But what a great post to honor him. Thank you so much for introducing so many great people to us. I love Srini and Ashley. Others that have inspired me would include Chris Guillebeau, Corbett Barr and Barbara Winter.
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Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 12:24 am

Hi Rasheed,

Thank you and you are right, it was for the best. Way too much suffering in the end.

Yes, some great people on that list. Helpful, engaging and inspirational. If you have the time, it’s well worth it to check them out.

I know of Chris and Corbett, so will have to visit there blogs. Will try and check out Barbara as well.


Alicia Jay February 10, 2012 at 4:26 am

Hi Craig,

There’s nothing I can say that hasn’t already been said here but know that my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. It definitely must have taken a lot for you to push through and write this post.

We’re all the better for it with such a great showing of “A-listers”! I know and follow many of them but you’ve brought to light some new faces for me. I’ll have to check them out.
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Bill Dorman February 10, 2012 at 2:51 pm

A-listers and then there’s Dorman, huh? How in the heck did he get to crash that party, right?
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Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 7:47 pm

“A-list Party Crasher”

There’s a title for ya. :)


Alicia Jay February 12, 2012 at 9:39 pm

Hey, when you’re on a big ship you have to expect some rats to come aboard. I kid, I kid. You know I love ya Billy Boy:)
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Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 7:45 pm

Hi Alicia,

I really appreciate you stopping by to comment. My father was an industrious guy, so he would have appreciated a ‘just keep moving’ mentality. That’s how the guy operated and he certainly got things done! :)

That’s a great group of people, for sure. Any and all are worth checking out.

Thanks again for the kind words.


Jens P. Berget February 10, 2012 at 6:07 am

Hi Craig,

I’m really sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine how that feels. It’s impressive how you look at the world and how you are getting strength to keep doing great things by helping others.

You’re list is impressive. I know most of the people, I believe it’s only two on the list that I’m not familiar with. I completely agree with, the people on your list are brilliant. And not only do they understand marketing, blogging, business etc.., but they love to share their knowledge and support people for free.

Keep the lists coming, I always enjoy discovering new people that are recommended by people I trust.
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Craig McBreen February 10, 2012 at 7:50 pm

Hi Jens,

Thank you. I’m just glad I’ve met so many fine people, like you!

Well, you should check those two out, because each has helped or motivated me in some way. Maybe they won’t be for you, but are definitely worth checking out.

Glad you recommend to keep lists like this going. I do like to highlight others whenever possible, so will certainly be doing something similar from time to time.

Thanks for the kind words, Sir.


Barbara February 11, 2012 at 8:49 am

Craig, accept my heartfelt condolences on the loss of your father. What a beautiful tribute you pay him with your life celebrating thank you list. I remember well your post on his illness and I was touched by the love shining in it.

Love your list and yes, they all inspire or influence me. I find inspiration outside of blogosphere in people like your mother or your wife, generous, loving and caring people.
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Craig McBreen February 13, 2012 at 11:03 pm

Hi Barbara,

Thank you. I figured what better way to celebrate his life than to post a thank you list.

Get a lot of inspiration from the list, but like you the people who influence me the most are the people I am closest to.



Ralph Dopping February 11, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Sorry for your loss. I won’t pretend that I know how that feels. I really love the kick in the butt sentiment. So good! Guns a blazin!

That’s quite the list you have going there. I find it inspirational that you have connected with such an influential list of folks (many of whom I also read). Thank you for bringing them to light. I am confident you will continue to build on your success especially with the group above.

Best of all, you are inspired by your mom and your wife. That’s such a heart felt sentiment and again your bravery to put that out there is inspiring.
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Craig McBreen February 13, 2012 at 11:08 pm

Hi Ralph,

Thank you. My father would have wanted me to keep moving!

This is truly a great group of people, but like I said to Barbara above, the people who influence me the most are the people I am closest to.

I really appreciate you coming by. Thanks!


Mark W Schaefer February 12, 2012 at 1:26 pm

First, thanks for the mention and the amazing post. I learned a few things from this.

First, your list is almost the same as my list : ) So I’m thinking about what that means! I literally knew everybody on this list except Ashley I believe. Interesting.

The other thing I have been thinking about is that I have had this nagging feeling that my blog as become to much about me. There is so much going on right now … I have so many ideas … that I literally have a backlog of 60 blog posts. I need to put the focus on other people more, as you have done here. Very good job Craig.

My way of shining the light is through guest posts but I think what you have done here is better and inspires me.

Great job and thanks!


Craig McBreen February 13, 2012 at 11:12 pm

Hi Mark,

Thank you for giving me such great advice when I was truly a rookie.

Glad we have similar lists. :)

Everyone above, including you, made this easy for me, really. I received a lot of advice and encouragement when I first started. I’ve been sitting on this post for a while and thought this was the best time to get it out. I really do want to highlight others more in the future, so glad this has your stamp of approval.

So happy this resonated with you and thanks again for coming by.


Deeone February 14, 2012 at 10:50 pm

Craig, my heart does goes out to you and your family at this time, bud. I’m moved by your strength to come back so early. It shows the remarkable individual that you really are, and the strong person that your parents taught you to be.

I know how hard it is to lose a parent, and you’ve seem to have done what I found to have helped me when my mother passed away. Remembering the lessons they’ve taught, sharing those lessons with others, taking the time to accept that it indeed had happened, and finding peace in knowing their suffering is now over. For me the pain slowly subsided; it never went away, but it did become easier to bear as each and everyday progressed. I send you and your family my deepest condolences, my friend. Continue to be strong.

I’ve only ventured to a few of the blogger’s blogs that made your list; and it is definitely time to head back their way; but the ones that I have visited were just as you said. Incredible writers that have a real handle on what being a blogger is all about; which is helping other people.

I’ve only been visiting Danny’s blog for a short time now, but I’m definitely a fan of the Scotsman, myself. :) As well as John and Al; both of these gents are incredible in their own right as well. The only ladies I’ve had the pleasure of connecting with is Kaarina and Lori; I haven’t had the pleasure of making it to their blogs just yet, but I will certainly make time to do so. I’ve also been seeing Bill around throughout the blogosphere, and I’ve even been following him on twitter; but have yet to visit his site. So I think the time is well overdue for me to pay him a visit as well.

You actually have a wonderful list here though, and I really enjoyed the lessons you shared from each one of these fine individuals. It’s extremely hard to find a mentor, so you should consider yourself a very lucky man to have so many. :)

There are many people, online and off, that have inspire me. If I start listing those that have indeed inspired me, I would have my own little mini-novel. And since I’m currently being tossed to and fro working on my first novel and also my first eBook at the moment; I’ll spare you from reading all of those names and websites I would have to list.

You would definitely be one of them though. I really enjoy your writing style; and I know whenever I stop in I’ll be sure to be motivated, inspired, crack a smile or even bust a gut laughing before I reach the end of each post.

Thanks for being YOU, Craig. You keep bringing the fire, bud! And I just love it here. Thanks for having me. Cheers!
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Craig McBreen February 15, 2012 at 4:12 am


Thank you for the kind words, here. I really do appreciate you stopping by.

I found strength in my family and it this event actually made us all closer, so there is something positive. Finding peace in knowing the suffering is over is a big one. That went on for way too long. We push through, eh?

Sorry about your mom too. Sounds like you were very close.

The people mentioned are all great bloggers and have helped my directly and indirectly. Danny, John and Al are all great. Extremely helpful as well. I would certainly say the same about Kaarina and Lori. You’ll enjoy Bill’s site and I’m pretty certain he’ll like you. The guy is great at fostering community. He also has some commenting chops, just like you!

Most of the people above engaged with me early in the process, so I quickly found out who was truly social and also who was industrious :) There is a problem with a list like this and that is that you do leave out many. My list is growing daily, really. But I thought this was a good time to hit publish on this one.

Thanks so much for the kind words and glad you like this place. As I said, I’m now getting back up to speed and will be to your house soon.

Thanks again! I’ll bring the fire, no problemo.


Gini Dietrich February 17, 2012 at 4:01 pm

Oh Craig. I’m so late to the party and I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your dad. Even though he was suffering, it certainly doesn’t make it any easier for you. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

You have the same group of people I consider friends. I can’t wait to meet you this summer!
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Craig McBreen February 19, 2012 at 10:48 pm

Hi Gini,

Thank you for the kind words and so glad you could stop by.

Yes, it will be great to meet you in person. Really looking forward to that, plus you’ll be here when the clouds finally part. Lisa has probably told you summer doesn’t start here until mid-July. :)


Adrienne February 17, 2012 at 4:44 pm

Craig, I’m so very sorry for your loss. I think our Dad’s were probably pretty similar with telling us both to suck it up and dive back in babe. Yeah, yeah, yeah, easier said then done. Although I was thankful he no longer had to suffer, his physical presence was still gone from my life and that was pretty rough for me.

Your wife and Mother sound like very wise women. I’m sure they are both happy to hear that you’ve actually learned some things from them now.

Great list or bloggers Craig and I know they are extremely appreciative of you mentioning them. I think my list could easily turn into a report, there are so many to thank. You did a wonderful job though so I applaud you.

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Craig McBreen February 19, 2012 at 10:53 pm

Hi Adrienne,

Thank you for the kind words. You’re right though, easier said than done. The memories live on, but yes that physical presence will be so missed.

Very wise women, indeed.

This list includes some of the people I connected with very early on, and I’ve been sitting on it for a while. My current list is way to big to fit into a blog post, so like you, I’d have to write a report. :)

Thanks for the nice comments. I really appreciate you coming by!


Fred Furney March 4, 2012 at 12:21 am

I’ll always remember your dad in his basement chair rockin out to Judas Priest. A man of few words… probably disliked me intensely ;-) I liked him though. Hope your mom and family are doing ok.


Craig McBreen March 6, 2012 at 1:20 am

Hi Fred,

He was funny like that. Would rock out and then listen to something like The Blue Danube by Johann Strauss. :)

He was a man of few words, but was actually very kind and generous. He often gave off the wrong impression and certainly did not dislike you. He was just quiet and some would take it the wrong way.

Mom and family are doing great.

Thanks again, Fred. Glad you liked him and thanks for the phone message, I really appreciate the kind words.


Mark W Schaefer May 17, 2012 at 2:10 am

This is an awesome list. Thanks you. You know what really made my day Craig? I love the way you sum up the themes in my blog and what you’ve learned. I would have summarized it the same way. It means so much just to get a little hint once in awhile that people are paying attention and “getting it.” This provided a great lift to me today. Thank you for this gift!
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Craig McBreen May 17, 2012 at 4:17 am

Hi Mark,

You are most welcome! It is all true.

And it’s all about the great content you offer!


Bill Dorman May 17, 2012 at 11:58 am

Hey Bud, thanks for the mention; I probably said it before, but you have placed me in some pretty high cotton……however high cotton gets……….that’s a Georgia thing I think, ’cause I’m in the land of oranges……….
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Craig McBreen May 17, 2012 at 10:34 pm

You deserve that place, Sir!


Marcus Sheridan-The Sales Lion May 18, 2012 at 4:40 am

You’re as good as they come Craig. Love seeing all these amazing people doing amazing things.

Thanks so much,

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Craig McBreen May 18, 2012 at 7:52 pm

Hi Marcus,

You’re welcome. Appreciate everyone listed, of course. And thank you again for your help and advice along the way.


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