Now I know how it feels when your first book is out. It's frightening. Every writer can tell you that writing a book is a lonely endeavor. And that's why we do it — because it's a way to find solace. To dig deep, explore, pioneer our imagination, and go all the way where you can only get by yourself.
And you write the book first and foremost for yourself. It's a selfish act. At the same time, it's a way to exercise control, take the steering wheel, and navigate where you need to go.
My book was three hundred years in the making. But I was always too scared to go ahead, to continue exploring. It was dark and scary. I kept pushing it out, and then I gave myself a firm deadline: publish by the time I turn forty. That's on Friday, November 13th, 2020.
So I went to work, pulled out all the nearly hundred-thousand words I've scribbled into my Scrivener's THE BOOK file. It took a lot of discipline and discarding nearly 60% of what I've written. Some of it was crap, stupid, embarrassing, ... and in the end, I chiseled away anything that didn't look like David.
When I was about 85% done, I suddenly felt elated when I realized this is MY book. I'm writing it, taking responsibility, and the ultimate freedom — I can write whatever I want and however I want. It's tough to describe, but it's a magical feeling of being in control of your destiny.
From that moment on, everything went super-smooth. I wrote faster, with more clarity, I got into the flow. The only other time I feel like that is when I'm in the last two kilometers of the marathon race. There is no exhaustion, no thirst, no cramps; it's like I'm an outside observer, overjoyed in knowing I'll soon be over that finish line.
My initial drive was the fear of death. I wasn't afraid of dying as such, but I was scared of leaving my kids the way my father left me — without guidance. That's why I needed to get this book out — for them.
I found joy in my life, and it's 20% luck and 80% discipline that got me here. This book is to nudge them to pursue those 80%, and the luck will come naturally. There is no other way.
I'm free now. I feel they're taken care of, no matter what.
Referring to it as "my first book" is on purpose because it means there has to be at least one more. And it will come.
I hope you enjoy reading it the way I enjoyed finishing those last 15%. If not, write your own book. Well, you can — and maybe should — write one anyway. Because we're living in a world where everyone has a voice, and it doesn't cost anything.
Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) is Amazon's platform for authors. You can upload your manuscript, design a cover, and have a Kindle and paperback version in the Amazon store in two days. Zero cost for you. Paperbacks are printed on-demand once ordered and shipped within a couple of days. You don't need a publisher, a team, nothing. You can promote it on Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social media for free.
What an amazing era we live in.
Steve Jobs's final words were: "Oh wow. Oh wow. Oh wow."
Stay hungry; Stay foolish.