Hi! I’m Mallory Whitfield!
I am a… creative entrepreneur. artist. crafter. maker. drag performance artist. speaker. coach. teacher. craft show veteran. SEO and social media marketer. writer. blogger. friendtor. sister. daughter. aunt. dreamer. do-er.
I’ve been making things and dreaming big for as long as I can remember. I come from a long line of entrepreneurs and learners. Growing up, my parents and grand-parents owned their own businesses. I remember the stories of how my grand-father taught himself trigonometry and calculus from books, and the value of self-education has always stuck with me.
I was always an over-achiever, getting top marks in school and reading everything I could get my hands on in my spare time. I was Internet-addicted by my tween years, at a time when the Internet was just getting started. I dropped out of high school halfway through my junior year, started college early, and graduated Loyola University New Orleans with a Bachelor of Arts in history in 2004. (I was three production credits short of a theatre minor.) And yet, the most valuable knowledge I have didn’t come from traditional means but from books, friendtors (friends + mentors), online courses and the handiest self-education tool of all: Google.
In 2004 I started my first business and dipped my toes in the craft show scene, selling my handmade clothing and accessories. Later, as my dreams turned to owning a retail store dedicated to handmade and eco-friendly goods, I stepped up my game, selling my work alongside that of other talented artists at craft shows, festivals and local events of my own making around New Orleans and beyond. I even wrote an e-book about how to make money at craft shows from what I learned during 10+ years of selling at craft shows.
In 2006, I started blogging here at MissMalaprop.com, though my earliest memories of blogging are on LiveJournal starting in 2001. (Cool fact: my boyfriend and I met on LiveJournal way back in the day!) Through trial and error, and a whole lot of Google searches, I taught myself all I could about blogging, HTML, WordPress, social media marketing, SEO, affiliate marketing, and so much more. One day, I realized I’d taught myself enough to land a job in the field, which is how I wound up working for one of the leading digital marketing agencies in New Orleans, FSC Interactive.
After a lot of soul-searching, I realized that my old dream of owning a retail store was no longer in the cards for me, but I couldn’t shake that entrepreneurial spirit.
I love helping small businesses grow and inspiring badass creatives to dream and do bigger.
Cool stuff I’ve done…
I am one of the founding members of the New Orleans Craft Mafia, a collective of indie craft artists created in 2005. I’ve organized and promoted group events, including our long-running Last Stop Shop holiday art market.
I’ve been jamming out with the best bunch of weirdos in the world since 2006 as part of Noisician Coalition, and have had the pleasure and privilege to perform at Voodoo Experience and march with the Krewe of Muses and Chewbaccus during Mardi Gras.
I won 3rd place in Etsy’s nationwide Upcycling Contest in 2007 for an outfit I made using FEMA blue tarp.
I created Tech School, a second stage of hands-on, how-to panels at the Rising Tide Conference in 2011 here in New Orleans.
I spoke on a panel during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week in 2012 on “Creating an Online Presence.”
In 2014, I graduated from the New Orleans Drag Workshop; you can sometimes find me performing around New Orleans as my alter ego, Glamdromeda.
Cool stuff that’s in the pipeline…
I’ll be speaking at iRetreat Conference here in New Orleans, June 28-30, 2015 on how to grow your following on Instagram.