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Beth Wodzinski Hi, I'm Beth. I create: words and art. I do yoga. I cook tasty food. I publish Shimmer magazine. Now 37% more purple.

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Fuck Black Friday

Published November 22, 2012 - 39 Comments

Tired of the Black Friday hype? Think it’s stupid to line up at Wal*Mart for three days to get twenty bucks off a DVD player or something? Think it’s all bullshit?

Me, too.

It’s time to say Fuck Black Friday again. I was going to wait until it was actually Friday, but since Black Friday itself is creeping into the rest of the week, why not start now?

Last year, instead of having some fancy sale, I just started giving stuff away. I ended up giving out a handful of Shimmer copies, a few shiva nata lessons, a picture of my cats, and a couple hundred bucks to various charities, ten bucks at a time. A lot of people matched the donations I made, and I got some cool stuff from other people as well. It was a wonderful antidote to the relentless commercial pressure of the season. Let’s do it again.

So here’s how it works.

Leave a comment with your request. I can offer Shimmer copies, spots in a Shiva Nata class, my own fiction, charitable donations, poutine-making lessons, and lots more. What would make your life better? What would make the world better? (Note: I totally reserve the right to refuse requests. I’m not gonna give you a million dollars, and I’m not going to donate to your local KKK Rapist Fathers Advocacy Group. Yanno?)

If you’re feeling the spirit and have something you’d like to give away, go ahead and offer it up. Absolutely no commercial pitches. Totally free stuff only. You’re also more than welcome to help grant requests of other commenters, too. There’s so much need.


What can I do for you?

I do have to work on Friday, so won’t be able to hover over this post every second, granting wishes like a grumpy fairy godmother, but I promise all requests will be addressed.


Wendy Withers - November 22, 2012 Reply

Request: I’ve been working on revising a novel that I want to self publish, and once I’ve had a chance to rework the first chapter (probably by the first week of December) it would be nice to have a professional pair of eyes look at it before it gets doctored. Or, a copy of Shinmer if that’s too much.

Offer: hand knit stuffed animals (maximum 10)

Chris Hansen - November 22, 2012 Reply

Well, I would love to try a yoga class – I haven’t tried that flavor and need to find a new dojo since Gold’s is offering crap at the moment. Got a spot open?

Beth - November 22, 2012 Reply

@Wendy — I’d be happy to read the first chapter! Send it to when you’re ready. And what a lovely offer!

@Chris — What I teach is more of a brain practice than a yoga class per se. I’d be happy to include you in the next one — or I could buy you a class at the awesome yoga studio near me. Go to a class together sometime?

mrmarkey - November 22, 2012 Reply

I would like a professional therapeutic massage (from Healing Mountain). 🙂

I will also give back!

I am offering 1 30 minute website/business/marketing/SEO consultation (limit: 3 people).

I am also offering a pair of drumsticks. Let this be your jumping off point for learning to drum! Just respond to me here. Fuck black Friday!

Beth - November 22, 2012 Reply

@sean, Granted.

And I can vouch for Sean’s web/seo/whatever consultation. He knows his stuff.

Keffy - November 23, 2012 Reply

Donation to your local food bank or to the Rolling Jubilee ( )

(I will donate to one on my end, as well.)

Chris Hansen - November 23, 2012 Reply

Beth, I’m more interested in your class – I can always find a yogi but brain hacks are awesome.

Beth - November 23, 2012 Reply

@Keffy requested that we all donate to our local food banks. So that’s $20.00 to from me. If you are moved to match this donation with your local food bank in the spirit of Fuck Black Friday, post here and let me know.

Beth - November 23, 2012 Reply

@Chris, done! I will be in touch. Will be via G+ if there are lots of takers; if not, we can work something out locally. 🙂

Beth - November 23, 2012 Reply

@ecthetwit requested a unicorn pony. Alas, I am unable to grant that request. Instead, $20 to Food Bank of the Rockies.

Jeff Xilon - November 23, 2012 Reply

Caught some talk of this on Twitter and seeing @Keffy’s suggestion spurred me on to donate to my hometown’s Food Bank organization. It’s not local to me anymore, but I think it fits in the spirit. Wanted to thank you all for the idea because I can’t believe I hadn’t donated to it before, seeing as how my father is the organization’s administrator! Just never occurred to me to check in on their online donation options until I saw #FuckBlackFriday. So thanks.

Beth - November 23, 2012 Reply

Terrific, Jeff! Got a request for me?

Jeff Xilon - November 23, 2012 Reply

@Beth hmm, I can always do with more reading material. A digital back issue of Shimmer would be cool. Sorry to say I don’t have any as is, though I’ll be picking up the current issue soon, so any issue at all would be cool.

Paula - November 23, 2012 Reply

I would love a Shiva Nata class. And I want to send someone a drawing.

Nathan Briggs - November 23, 2012 Reply

I would like spreading awareness of chronic pain conditions (extra points for writing about fibromyalgia, which is what I have) or donating to a chronic pain charity (extra points for In return, I’m offering 3 single-site WordPress Security Audits (normal price $100).

Helen - November 23, 2012 Reply

What a cool idea.
I am happy to gift a knitting pattern from my website to any knitters out there. You would get it sent as an email from me with a pdf.
Just email me with F Black Friday as the title. Tell me what pattern you’d like 🙂
My website is and if you want to pick your pattern.
I am open to gifts such as online courses/e-books etc. But not too worried about getting anything in return (heck I’m not even in the US – but commercialism does stink)

Jill S. - November 23, 2012 Reply

I’m here via Keffy. Would love it if you would support this project to bring more awareness to mental health, global development, girls’ education and suicide:

I believe this project will have a huge impact. Thanks!

Elise - November 23, 2012 Reply

I’m happy to contribute a critique on a story, of up to 5000 words. Because I know Beth is going to come through with that unicorn pony, I just know it!

Beth - November 23, 2012 Reply

@paula: Granted! And what a lovely offer. So who needs a little more beauty in your life? Paula’s got you covered.

@nathan: $20 to, done! and I’d happily offer you a guest post spot if you want to write about fibro sometime. And folks, that’s an AMAZING offer. Nathan really knows his WP security. TAKE HIM UP ON IT!

@helen: What a wonderful offer! Thank you!

@jill: $20.00 donated. Great project.

@Elise thank you! Surely someone will snap that up quickly.

Beth - November 23, 2012 Reply

@jeff, I’ll send you Issue 14 in a few moments. Enjoy!

Mary Robinette Kowal - November 23, 2012 Reply

I want a story!

In return, I’ll send someone a hardback of Shades of Milk and Honey or a story. Or both!

Julia - November 23, 2012 Reply

I would love a copy of Shimmer, and for you to give yourself something nice this season as well. That obviously can span from the present to your self to the feel good action of donating to a food bank or local animal charity. Thank you for inspiring this idea of giving rather than receiving.

Kriti - November 23, 2012 Reply

I’d love a copy of Shades of Milk and Honey. I’d also love a copy of Shimmer, if it’s not too much.

I have a copy of Ender’s Game to give away.

Melissa - November 23, 2012 Reply

I would most like someone to buy a child a book – whether that’s a child they know or for a literacy campaign or some other way. I’m also very intrigued by the idea of shiva nata. Are there any example clips anywhere? I’d like to see one. (On the “unicorn-pony” level, I’d like a bonsai tree. Ha.)

I doubt I have much anyone will want. I’ll give someone (or several someones, if there’s interest) a personalized, hand-written & real-life mailed letter. And/or I’ll offer up space for some sort of guest post or promo on my (generally book-related) website. Or if someone prefers, I’m a pretty good beta-reader even if my only credential is book blogger. 🙂

@Jill S – I’m also kicking in what I can scrape up for The Girl Who Knew Too Much. It sounds like a great project.

Nathan Briggs - November 23, 2012 Reply

@Beth: *mwah*

@everyone: to claim one of the review slots, open a ticket at

Kaari - November 23, 2012 Reply

I was going to say I’d love a Dance of Shiva class via internet but then I remembered my webcam doesn’t work. So how about a donation to Scarleteen if you’re up for that? (Comprehensive, accurate, inclusive. non-judgy sex ed) I know Heather could use it, and I can’t afford to give her anything myself right now.

I can offer editing services, either comprehensive/content or copyediting, up to about ten pages, for someone. Fiction, non-fiction, blog post, anything with some kind of narrative.

(Ha! I came back to see if you’d seen this yet and found I never hit submit. Resistance, me? Here goes…)

simone bernhard - November 23, 2012 Reply

I need a WP security check for my website, above! I’ll donate a custom headband fascinator. Thanks everyone, FBF!

Jill S. - November 23, 2012 Reply

Awesome! Thanks so much! I know the film makers will be very grateful.

mrmarkey - November 23, 2012 Reply

Also I donated to the Utah Human Society because KITTIES!!!

Beth - November 23, 2012 Reply

@Mary, I’ll write you a story, and expect one back in return. Before the end of the year?

@Julia, sent a copy of Shimmer #15 to you. Enjoy! And I think I will join my husband for his massage and call that something nice for myself. 🙂

@Kriti, Shimmer #15 on its way to you. Enjoy!

Beth - November 23, 2012 Reply

@Melissa, I’d love a real-life letter! PO Box 58591, SLC UT 84158

Here’s a video of a goofy shiva nata practice from my old site:
and the Shiva Nata Association has a YouTube channel with a ton of videos:

$20 given to, which promotes literacy in kids around the world.

@Kaari, $20 to Scarleteen.

@simone! I love your fascinators. Though mostly these days I just wear a baseball cap, because I’m really sensitive to fluourescent lights, so I’ll let someone else snap that up. (and did you see the link to enter a request with Nathan?)

@Mrmarkey KITTIES!!

Wendy Withers - November 23, 2012 Reply

@Mary Shades of Milk and Honey was one of the books I just ordered from Barnes and Noble. I’m reading Pride and Prejudice for a graduate class, so I figured I’d keep up the momentum.

Melissa - November 24, 2012 Reply

@simone Wow, your stuff looks fantastic! I’d love a fascinator.

I also found an extra paperback copy of Nicole Peeler’s Tempest Rising that I can send to someone. And as soon as I convert this short story to an e-readable format, I’ll share that with anyone who’d like it as well.

simone bernhard - November 24, 2012 Reply

@Beth: yep, Nathan is the best! Glad you like my stuff!

Anyone who wants the fascinator shoot me an email at, also check my facebook page (not my website as it’s been hacked, hence the need for Nate the Great!) for photos of my work. Kisses!

Andy Dolph - November 24, 2012 Reply

This is cool – I throw in a couple of things –

3 copies of Deep Alignment, which is my album of meditation music that will be released soon – on the woo woo end of the spectrum – it’s infused with Divine Grace and you actually receive the energy when you listen…
email if you’re interested

An interview for your website – I’ll offer 2 of these. We’ll get on skype and I’ll record an interview with you about what it is you do, that you can put on your site for people who want to listen rather then read, and want to know more about you. Once we’ve recorded the interview, I’ll send you the raw file to edit and post, or if you want, you can pay for my editor to clean it up and make it sound really natural (removing extra ums and ahs and false stars and such…) you pay my cost which is going to be between $10 – $30 depending on how long the recording and how difficult the edit. The $ go right to my editor (who I hired through oDesk – he does a great job – he edits my podcast every week though for pennies on the dollar compared to USA rates)
again – email if your interested…

lastly – this is always free, you might like my podcast, Holistic Business Radio which is at it’s a mix of interviews and conversations about different aspects of doing business and the inner, in the soft kind of work that I’ve found to be SO important for doing business and everything else….

Yael Saar - November 24, 2012 Reply

I love this!
I’d love to participate in a Shiva Nata Google Hangout.
I want to make a steaming pot of ginger honey mint tea (or any other tea you prefer, and if you wish I’ll make you coffee), and drink it with you when you come to Ithaca, and if we get to take a walk in the woods together that would be supreme.
And I can offer an UnGuilt Trip coaching session, 1 hour, on the phone, reframing and disarming something that hurts somebody on the inside.
how about that? many hugs.

Kriti - November 24, 2012 Reply

@Beth thank you!

@Melissa I’ll make sure to buy a child a book.

If anyone wants my additional copy of Ender’s Game, please shoot me an e-mail at

I can also offer an hour of my time to multiple people to help someone with their web presence (critique your website, help you figure what you’d need for any additional things you want to do, whatever.) I have no official experience doing this, but I’m a programmer/manager, I have a good eye for detail and really appreciate good websites, so I think I’d be good at it. Shoot me an e-mail if you’re interested.

Mary Robinette Kowal - November 25, 2012 Reply

@Beth: It’s a deal.

@Kriti: I dropped an email to you and will send Shades of Milk and Honey your way.

@Wendy Withers: I hope you like it! You’ll spot all of the side jokes to P&P, though the strongest influence is actually Persuasion.

Helen - November 28, 2012 Reply

yipes – anyone who was after knitting patterns, my email is broken…apologies.
Contact me at instead if you would like one 🙂

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