24 Questions with Matthew Dicks

MATHEW DICKS is an award-winning elementary school teacher and the internationally bestselling author of Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend, Something Missing, Unexpectedly, Milo, The Perfect Comeback of Caroline Jacobs, and Storyworthy: Engage Teach, Persuade, and Change Your Life Through the Power of Storytelling.

He is a 39-time Moth StorySLAM and 6-time Moth GrandSLAM champion and the founder and Artistic Director of Speak Up, a Hartford-based storytelling organization. He is also a wedding DJ, minister, stand-up comic, and a Lord of Sealand. Matt loves ice cream cake, golf, tickling his children, staring at his wife, and not sleeping.


1. What does thriving mean to you?
Always moving forward

2. What’s the one domino that moves you toward thriving?
My ever-present focus and fear of death keeps me plowing ahead at all times.

3. What was or is your favourite way to sabotage yourself?
Speaking my mind even when I know my opinion will not be well received and will not advance my cause.

4. What gets you back on track?
Celebrating small victories. Building momentum.

5. What was an embarrassing/painful moment you can share?
My third novel did not sell. One whole year of writing my heart out, and no one wanted my book. My publisher dropped me.

6. What did you learn recently?
Self-care includes putting yourself in a position to feel great about yourself.

7. Divide your age by half , who were you then?
Homeless. Awaiting trial for a crime I did not commit. Cleaning up trash at construction sites for cash.

8. What was one of your aha/breakthrough moments?
I was robbed at gunpoint in the office of a McDonald’s restaurant in 1992. Gun to the head. Triggers pulled. I was absolutely certain that I was going to die. Ever since that horrific night, I have cherished every moment of my life and approached every day with relentless tenacity.

9. Whats the one resource you would recommend?

10. What is your favourite quote?
“Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.”
― H. Jackson Brown Jr.

11. What are your top VALUES?
Honesty. Hard work. Courage.

12. What is your focus over the next 12 months?
Writing, storytelling, comedy, and teaching. Also finding the next thing.

13. You write a book for your great grandkids, what principles do you want to pass on?
Hard work will overcome talent every time.

14. Who is one of the people that made an impact on your life?
Stephen King. His book “On Writing” inspired the hell out of me.

15. What are you thankful for?
My wife and children. They make every day brighter.

16. If someone grew up in a dysfunctional/chaotic home what advice would you give them going forward?
Keep your eyes forward. Move forward. Don’t allow the past to catch up to you.

17. What is your favourite memory of this year?
New England Patriots Super Bowl victory

18. Do you have a favourite joke or a funny moment?
Too many to mention

19. What do you need to have LESS of in your life?

20. What rule should we be breaking?
Rules should only be followed if someone is enforcing them.

21 . What’s the one thing you want to do before you die?
Watch my children grow old.

22. What is one small step you would recommend one take to improve their life?
Homework for Life: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7p329Z8MD0

23. Who is the PERSON(S) you would like to acknowledge by nominating them to be showcased @ THRIVEMASTERS?


24. How can people connect with you?