I had the privilege to interview Sarah Spain recently, and I got to say, it was an awesome experience! Even though Sarah is busy and traveling all over the place right now, she was nice enough to take some time out of her busy day to do this interview. I am also new to this whole interviewing thing, but Sarah was a great sport.
For those of you who don't know who Sarah is, or want to find out a little bit more about her, you can check out her website here. But, if you are a Chicago Sports fan, or even a blogger out there, you definitely know who Sarah Spain is. Or you should at least!
For you Chicago Sports fans, Sarah is from Mouthpiece Sports. MPS is definitely my favorite Chicago Sports Website to check out on a daily basis, so I have been a fan of Sarah's for a while now.
For you bloggers out there, Sarah was just a panelist at the Blogs with Balls event in NYC this past weekend. And from everything I read about the event, it seems like it was a success. There were a ton of big time names there, like SI's Jimmy Traina, and it would have been awesome to goto and network. I wish I could have gone, but Lumbergh and Initech would have fired me if I skipped work for the Event, so I couldn't make it.
Anyways, I will stop talking now, here is our Q & A...
VC: Being Chicago Sports fans, I'm sure most of my readers already know who you are, especially from the EBay Superbowl Tickets story , but I wanted to ask a you more about that. Tell us the truth, who came up with that idea? And if it was you, was this just a ploy to get actual tickets to the game, or to get free publicity, or both?
SS: While few people believe me, I can honestly say that I had no idea what I was setting into motion when I put the e-Bay ad up. About 5 minutes after the Bears beat the Saints, I went online and bought a flight to Miami--I figured I could get tickets, lodging, etc. with my friends who had agreed to head down to the game if the Bears made it. Unfortunately, they all bailed. I was on my own and needed to find a way to either raise the $4,000 (or more) for a ticket or win one somehow. After seeing "Screech" make a website to have fans help pay off his mortgage, I thought maybe I could make a "help me go to the Super Bowl" website and try to get people to donate a dollar each or something. Unfortunately, I didn't know html, nor did I know how to promote a site like than in the span of 3 or 4 days. So I was at work a few days later talking to my boss at Fox Sports about how much I wanted to go the game and I mentioned the website idea. He said "Why don't you just go on e-Bay instead?" I'd never used e-Bay and I thought maybe I could just tell a couple local radio stations about it and see if they'd give me a ticket through a contest or something. I put the ad up at 11pm and the next morning I had over 500 emails in my inbox. That's when I realized that I'd gotten myself into something way bigger than I thought. If you look at the wording I made it clear that I was NOT an escort--that it was just a "date" and nothing more. I told people I didn't want to be bought--so they shouldn't "bid"--I had no "buy it now" price so no one could claim to have won, and the day the auction ended was after the game. Clearly I didn't intend to actually go to the game with a stranger. While some people thought I truly wanted to be "bought" by someone or that I thought I somehow deserved to have someone PAY to take me to the game, the truth was, I was just hoping some company with a box would have an extra unclaimed ticket or, like I said, that the e-Bay stunt would just lead to a radio station giving me a ticket or something. When Axe's PR company, Edelman, called me up offering tickets for me and two girlfriends and a lucky guy to be our "date," it was so beyond any dream I could have imagined. When all the TV, newspaper, radio, etc. people started emailing me for interviews, I began to realize that I had a unique opportunity on my hands and it was something that, despite being unintentional, shouldn't be wasted.
VC: Tell us a little bit more about that experience you had there and the people you met. How was that experience, and what was your best memory from being there?
VC: Now I personally know you more from the work you do on Mouthpiece Sports. I'm a huge fan of your work there. You know you have every Sports fans dream job right? How did you get that opportunity there, and all these other opportunities in the Sports World listed on your resume? Is this something you always wanted to do, or did you just happen to run into this industry?
VC: What is some advice you would give to our readers, or even someone like myself who wants to get into the industry?
SS: Find your voice and use it. Don't try to be someone else. Network your face off. Work harder than you think is necessary and never think you're too big-time, busy or talented to do jobs, interviews or favors for free--those may be the very opportunities that get you your big break. I did a ton of free freelance work and never blow someone off if they ask me for advice or email me for tips on getting into the industry. And, as cliche as it sounds, don't step on anyone on the way up, you'll surely see them on your way down.
VC: What is the coolest event or place you have gotten to go because of your job?
VC: Any horror stories from being on the job? Any haters?
VC: Who are your role models, male or female?
VC: The Hawks and the Bulls have awesome young teams/ players. Do you see them making great strides next year and contending for titles?
SS: I tend to be a hopeful supporter (typical Cubs fan) so I'm praying the hype is warranted. Devin Hester should be a much more dangerous receiver with Cutler in the pocket, but his go routes aren't going to be enough to carry an offense. Matt Forte will have to continue to dominate on the ground and one of the under performing Bears receivers will need to make a big improvement. Haven't gotten out to an OTA because I've been so focused on the Hawks and Cubs, but I'm looking forward to getting out there soon.
VC: I know you are a huge Cubs fan. What do you think about the Cubs squad this year? As usual, is this the year?
VC: What is your everday routine?
SS: Ha. No everyday routine at all. My schedule depends on whether I have a shoot that day--be it a home Cubs game, an interview with a player, a red carpet event. If I don't have a shoot I'm likely at the office writing, pushing out content or researching for upcoming stories. When I get some free time I like to get out and try new restaurants and bars in Chicago--I was living in LA for six years so I'm just starting to re-learn the city.
VC: Lastly, to switch it up a little bit, what albums are on replay in your ipod right now?
SS: I like all kinds of music so it depends on the day. Recently it's been a lot of Counting Crows, Thomas Dybdahl, Kings of Leon, Martin Sexton, The Kin and Common.
Thank so much for your time Sarah, we hope to check back in with you soon!
Also, if you haven't already, check out a couple of Sarah's videos below....
Funny + Sports...
Sarah at last year's Super Bowl...
Hope you guys liked this interview. Please chime in with some comments! Take care...