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Going After Her Dream: Margot Starbuck

On a now defunct site, I used to run five question Q&As with designers on Fridays. It was one of my very favorite features, and one that I was sad to leave behind. When I was planning content for 2013 on Sarah by the Sea, I saw that as my focus on women going after their dreams increases, there’s great opportunity to do something like that feature here. So I went for it.

Now, I would like to introduce you to Margot Starbuck, a 43-year-old writer from Durham, North Carolina. Her dream? “Twin dream of writing a hit screenplay comedy and also hosting my own HBO standup comedy special. In the meantime, I keep writing. It’ll happen.” Go, Margot!

Why is important to you to go after your dream?

Margot Starbuck: Life is short.  There is so much that I want to create and achieve–it’s a lot to fit in!  I’m also aware that my daughter is watching me.  I named her Zoe, which means life, and I want her to live with gusto, embracing life that really is life.

What are your must-reads for inspiration and motivation?

MS: Honestly, I’m most motivated by the people I see around me who are living their dreams.  One friend completed a PhD in geology, then moved west to live the real dream and become a firefighter.  My husband, who’d been serving as a pastor, pursued his love of building and became a project manager for a construction company. I am fueled and inspired when I see Ellen Degeneres dancing through her studio audience, enjoy Jim Gaffigan’s comedy special and delight in Kristin Wigg’s delicious script for Bridesmaids.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received?

MS: Best piece of advice: build your tribe.  If I can get other folks excited about my work, they’ll be enthused about sharing it with others.

Who inspires you and why?

MS: I’m inspired by folks who continue to use and expand their creative gifts.  Tina Fey worked as both a writer and a performer on Saturday Night Live. She produces and stars in her own television show.  Who knows what she’ll do next.  Honestly, who knows what I’ll do next?!  I plan to keep building and staying open to new possibilities: radio, tv, film, comedy.  Who knows?

What’s the first thing you do every morning?

MS: First thing I do every morning is stretch my feet. I live with chronic plantar fasciitis and the ligaments in my feet get so tight that I can’t walk without stretching them. So, in a very literal way, I start the day by getting grounded.


Thank you to Margot Starbuck! Tune in every Friday for interviews with women going after their dreams.

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