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I am delighted to welcome Asnat Greenberg to the discussion.

Asnat Greenberg is a writer, an artist who works with iron, and a former senior economist at the Bank of Israel. She is married, has three children, and lives in Jerusalem, Israel.
Her art web-site is: http://www.helen-and-asnat.com
Email address: goodpeoplestories@gmail.com

Her book, Secrets of Kindness: A Journey Among Good People can be found at: http://www.amazon.com/Secrets-Kindness-Journey-People-ebook/dp/B008YAHD8K

Question 1:  From where do you draw inspiration?

The point of my book, Secrets of Kindness: A Journey Among Good People, is to make the world a better place. I tell the stories of kindhearted people, and I hope to make others take after them. I receive inspiration from the special people I meet or read about and from the innate desire to bring about positive change. The Dalai Lama said, “This is the time to start educating the heart.” I hope this book will contribute, even a little, to educating all our hearts.

Question 2:  What is the hardest thing about your creative process?

I find that the hardest part for me is developing the idea. The “before” part makes me restless. When I know what I want to do, and I have a vision for it, I have a sudden lift in energy. I become full of excitement, and feel like I can conquer anything.

Question 3: Do you work every day, or only when inspiration/ opportunity strikes?

When I am inspired, I work nonstop. 24 hours a day. That’s what I did when I worked on my art, before an exhibition, and that’s what I continued to do while working on the book. I was completely immersed in it.

Question 4: How do you feel about the current art market/ art climate?

The art world has suffered in the past few years due to the financial crisis. The recession makes it harder for artists to break through and make a living from their art.

Question 5: What would you change in the art market today?

I would change the lack of accessibility that artists have to curators and gallery owners. It’s very difficult for artists to get to “decision makers” in the art world.

Question 6: Talk a little bit about your current project and why you decided to embark on it?

Although I’ve always enjoyed writing, I never intended to write a book. Everything happened by chance. I thought about the importance of hope, and how to reinforce it. I asked myself: how can I connect people to hope? Then I happened upon a book by Mitch Albom Have a Little Faith. This book, along with other Mitch Albom books, describes meetings with spiritual teachers – Two of them – One, Albert Lewis, the rabbi of the community in which he lived as a child; and the other, Henry Covington, once a drug dealer and convicted criminal who later became the pastor of a black church in Detroit that also served as a shelter for the homeless.

When I reached the middle of the book, I knew how to connect people to hope. I also knew what I wanted to do: to disseminate stories about good people –about their acts of benevolence and, beyond that, about who they are: what makes them happy, what saddens them, what they envy, what they think about money and power, are they forgiving, what kinds of people they respect, what are their dreams, and much more. When I reached the end of the book, I smiled to myself upon reading his last five words. They were: “I’m in love with hope.”

Question 7: How does being a woman impact your work?

I am a big believer in a woman’s power. Women are strong, smart, sensitive, are able to work with others, and don’t let their egos get in the way. While doing my art work, I became friends with another artist, and our work together was harmonious.

Question 8: If you had the opportunity to address a group of young girls, what would you say to inspire them?

I would tell them to accomplish their dreams. That they should go after their hearts, and what makes them happy. They they can! That they are smart, strong, and sensitive. I would quote a saying by Alexander Graham Bell: “A man, as a general rule, owes very little to what he is born with – a man is what he makes of himself.”  And I would finally request of them to make their dreams come true.