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The Art of Asking

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help
Narrated by: Amanda Palmer
Length: 11 hrs and 27 mins
Categories: Biographies & Memoirs
4.6 out of 5 stars (512 ratings)

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Summary

Imagine standing on a box in the middle of a busy city, dressed as a white-faced bride, and silently using your eyes to ask people for money. Or touring Europe in a punk cabaret band, and finding a place to sleep each night by reaching out to strangers on Twitter. For Amanda Palmer, actions like these have gone beyond satisfying her basic needs for food and shelter - they've taught her how to turn strangers into friends, build communities, and discover her own giving impulses. And because she had learned how to ask, she was able to go to the world to ask for the money to make a new album and tour with it, and to raise over a million dollars in a month.

In The Art of Asking, Palmer expands upon her popular TED talk to reveal how ordinary people, those of us without thousands of Twitter followers and adoring fans, can use these same principles in our own lives.

This audio digital download includes a PDF featuring photographs and song lyrics.

©2014 Amanda Palmer (P)2014 Hachette Audio

What listeners say about The Art of Asking

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    5 out of 5 stars

Funny, Earthy...You Will Be Inspired

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes! I had never heard of Amanda Palmer, and am not into indie rock per se, however her story, told honestly and with a huge dose of humour, made it a very enjoyable listen. She comes across as very personable, and exceedingly normal, which juxtaposed with the tales of her "exotic" lifestyle, makes it one of the best I've listened to. I'd love to have a cup of tea with her, any day!

What did you like best about this story?

She weaves the theme of "the art of asking" throughout the telling of some of the events in her life, making it both entertaining and educational. You end up thinking "If Amanda could ask for assistance or an exchange of her art for cash to live on...in the way that she did...why the heck can't I summon up the courage to ask for help as well! I'm sure she'll be pleased to read that!

What does Amanda Palmer bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

This is one story that just had to be read by the author, and she does it very, very well. In addition, as she is a musician, between the chapters there are short musical intervals that add to the experience. I had never heard her music before....so, it was a nice touch to hear a bit of her music, as it satisfied my curiosity.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Laughter mainly!

Any additional comments?

For those of you wondering if a book written by an indie rock musician will have too much "private" information that you'd rather not hear or an excess of profanity...be assured that this book is "pretty safe". Swear words occur occasionally, but they are used in specific situations where nothing else would convey the scene being described. Everything is written with clarity and a pureness of intention that your Granny would approve of. Your Granny would also enjoy having a cup of tea with Amanda!

7 people found this helpful

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A Beautiful Journey and Inspiration

I'm not going to lie, it took me months to finish this. I'm learning to enjoy audio books and they take me a while, usually but I think I just didn't want this one to end.

Amanda strikes me deep down on a visceral level. I don't know why. She always has. I'm not a die hard fan but I do love her, as a person and to be able to have something that let's me understand her (and by extention, think about myself) on more intimate levels is beautiful.

This book will mean something different for everyone. It's not masterfully written but it's honest. Some will read it as a memoir and others will let it change their life in some way. And that's good.

If you like Amanda, or not but are curious about her, give this book a shot. It's narrated as if you are sitting across from Amanda, drinking coffee and watching rain pour down the fogged up glass of a window. It's intimate, honest and raw and sometimes we need that.

2 people found this helpful

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If you're feeling lost, hopeless or alone: you need this book

Sustenance for the soul. Apparently I need to use 15 words, but that covers it.

1 person found this helpful

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Moving and engrossing...

Simply the best read audiobook I've ever listened to. Didn't know what to expect but loved the journey. Great work!

1 person found this helpful

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Raw, Vulnerable, Real With Multiple Love Stories

I had seen Amanda's TED Talk last year and was intrigued. Then I saw someone reference the fact that they were reading her book, The Art of Asking, on LinkedIn of all places and I decided to dive in.

It is a rollercoaster of stories, emotions, how to develop your tribe (a la Seth Godin), vulnerability (Brene Brown), what it means to trust, both those you know and total strangers, the constructive and destructive power of the internet ... as well as the struggle we all have with asking. I haven't been as emotionally touched by an audiobook in years - it is truly brilliant and beautiful. The stunning narration by Amanda is a masterclass in itself and the wonderful anecdotes, her stories of love for her mentor, Anthony and husband, Neil are quirky as much as they are authentic.

It is hard to encompass the range, the depth, the feeling that her words evoke and yet some of my take aways were not from Amanda herself but from others - Anthony who said in relation to her fans and people in general, 'You cannot give them what they want but you can give them something greater, trust!' - This surely is the true essence of the relationship between inventors, creators and artists with their followers and customers and the general public.

And then from her mother, one of the early computer programmers, when recalling being criticised by the teenage Amanda for knowing nothing of creativity, she said 'You can hang your art on walls to be seen and play your music to be heard but what I created could not be seen'. Yes, we are all artists.

I cannot recommend it highly enough. The fact that this is only my second ever recommendation says it all. Enjoy, if you dive in!

1 person found this helpful

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Touching , brilliant moving and marketing

An Ed Dale recommendation and a winner. This book is beautiful read . It teaches so many lessons about marketing , tribe building , managing your tribe dealing failure dealing with success ... Dealing with love and pain .

I got knowledge that will help my business grow And at the same time for the first time an understanding of the feelings my ex went through when she had an abortion , something that liberated me and made me just want to go back in time and hug her .
I went into this book having not even heard of the author but if your not sure go watch her Ted talk . Ps her music is a bit to niche for me to understand but I understand life better now.

3 people found this helpful

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Must listen book for creatives.

Would you consider the audio edition of The Art of Asking to be better than the print version?

Well, yes probably. Amanda reads it so you get the extra personal level. It's a great book that I'm sure works either in audio or print.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Art of Asking?

The honesty and the ideas. I enjoyed the way the book was presented in themes rather than a direct timeline.

Have you listened to any of Amanda Palmer’s other performances? How does this one compare?

I have listened to her music and some of her talks. This is better than her TED talk, in my opinion.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Same as the book I guess :)

Any additional comments?

Just get it, you won't regret it.

1 person found this helpful

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Fascinating insight and honesty

I really enjoyed listening to this and learning about Amanda's life. I knew nothing about her beforehand but her story is an interesting one. I'm amazed at the energy she has to party, socialise and interact with her fanbase on such an intense level for so many years. I found myself feeling quite envious of the decades of interesting experiences she's had. I really enjoyed the musical interludes and found many of her revelations touching.

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Inspirational

An absolute rollercoaster of emotions. You instantly get sucked in. So honest and so inspiring, can be applied by anyone. Rock ghandi

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Fantastic

Wonderful story and performance by Amanda Palmer, it gives insight into the author and the message she's trying to make. A must-read for artists, and art critics. The only possible downside is that the chronology can be a little confusing at times - for the most part, she starts off in a linear fashion but there are instances when the point being made requires jumping forward in time, or going back further. Her voice is also very soothing.

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  • Johanna Warden
  • 25-07-17

Loved it!

I loved every minute of it. Amandas voice was perfect for reading the book but I wish it was longer

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  • Joachim
  • 02-06-16

This. Is. Good. Art.

This book showes what to do when life gets tough. As Gaiman himself has said it "make good art."

If artists would take Gaiman's advice and created their art in the example of this book, then maybe the story of Amanda Palmer wouldn't seem so alien. And as a result we could have a world filled with stronger and healthier relationships between artists and their fans.

I hope every striving artist read this book and decide to take the leap and ask the world. This book opened my eyes and I will do my best to ask or at least notice when I turn away donuts someone is gifting me.

The pleasure of giving is all I want to do with my art, so I will try to not take it away from others. (Artist or not)

Thx, Amanda.

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  • Juana
  • 08-04-16

touching

It is a fantastic, honest, touching book! I see myself so much in this story!

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  • Sergey Kornilov
  • 19-06-15

Amazing Amanda

It's better in Audible. Cuz when Ananda reads it for you the effect is doubled. Everything is in sauce of music of Dresden dolls. Thank you.

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  • Tanyush
  • 18-06-15

What a beautiful story and narration!

The story and the narration by Amanda herself is absolutely beautiful! She is genuine, authentic and at times very vulnerable... I'm impressed by her deep personality and views of life. Highly recommended!

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  • pmarkowsky
  • 07-06-15

A person that really understands where humanity is going

Wow, I remember I met Amanda when I was living in Sydney as the bride, listened to her music on JJJ radio now listened to her story here. This was a journey for me and taught me that asking is ok and not to be hung up on the reply. Once you ask you get AN answer and are able to move on. Never dwell or get hung up but just ask?! Thank you Amanda.

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  • Ana Marcos
  • 27-02-15

Good story

loved that she was the one telling the story. Very well told with a soothing voice

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  • Christophe
  • 23-12-14

AFP at her best

If you could sum up The Art of Asking in three words, what would they be?

honest, intimate, touching

What did you like best about this story?

the story about the dog and the nail

What does Amanda Palmer bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Amanda is a good story teller - her reading the book gives it a intensity that does not came across in the print version. Some parts of this book are so enticing it is almost impossible to escape the narrative - there were moments it feels she is present in the room.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

not sure yet - will have to re-listen - there are many moments like the part when AFP talks about homeless people and her teenage stories.

Any additional comments?

Probably the best read this year - it is insightful, personal and brutally honest without hurting anyone or anything. Cosmic!

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  • Flick Grey
  • 05-03-19

Just awesome

If you don’t already love Amanda Palmer’s contributions to the world, this book will make her way of thinking and being irresistible. I feel so much bigger on the inside, thank you to all involved.