About

Hi, I’m Alan.

I’m a Creative Director and copywriter in Los Angeles. I’ve been doing this job for about 16 years.

Rather than crush your soul with buzzwords (“I’m a strategically-minded lateral thinker who loves brand engagement and dogs!”), I’m going to tell you ten things that I like. And they’re going to be in a list because this is the Internet and there are rules.

Things I Like (Abridged)

  • When the person next to you has an idea so great that the whole room gets caffeinated
  • Karaoke-ing Prince
  • Advertising that rewards your attention
  • A brief that has a real, honest to god insight in it
  • Clients who respect their audience
  • Joakim Noah—everything about him
  • When the idea you wrote for yourself is the one that everyone gets excited about
  • Greasy gyros
  • When the pad gets hot and 30 jokes fall out
  • Honorable mention goes to Thin Lizzy in the summer, Paul F Tompkins on a podcast and Kumail Nanjani, Birthday Loan Officer.

In the course of getting old, I’ve also developed some opinions on what makes a good leader in this business. I’m going to share them here because I pay for this website so I get to decide what goes where.

Things that I’ve Noticed that Good Creative Leaders Do

(also Abridged)

  • Get excited by their teams’ ideas
  • Know when to do the dishes and when to invent a new kind of dishwasher
  • Focus on what’s right about an idea instead of what’s wrong
  • Guide rather than order
  • Empathize with both their client and their audience
  • Trust their instincts but stay flexible
  • Make a room laugh
  • Own shitty suggestions when they make them
  • Understand the difference between making something better and playing with their food 
  • Make stuff better by reorienting work toward what’s awesome in the core of the idea

I have my M.A. in English. I’m also a Second City writing program grad, so I have a diploma to prove that I was willing to pay someone to tell me I was funny. And I make stuff up at iO, UCB and on a podcast.

Want to take a look at my resume?