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Last December I self-published my first book.

I secretly pictured others saying “Wow! This book is a secret gem. I’ll share this with everyone I know, including Oprah and the girl from the Progressive commercials.” Then, I would sit back and watch my Amazon sales skyrocket, I quit my job, become a full-time author and then bask in wonderful wonderfulness.

The reality is I’ve sold 82 copies.

So, I’m not quitting my job. Despite pocketing $1.20 per hour, I LOVED writing Creative You and am ready to write a new book.

As noted earlier, I’m going behind-the-scenes in the process.

Here, in what I’m marking as Week 1*, I’m starting this book. Honestly, I’m extremely excited to jump in and see where this goes.
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Some people play sports. Some spend time with friends. Some do charity work.

I wrote a theme song for my blog. Don’t judge.

Go behind-the-scenes as I write a book. Or go do something worthwhile.

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Much like Alfred Hitchcock, Frankenstein and hair, some things in life are scary.

For those of us who find ourselves creating, sometimes the act of creating itself is frightening. Whether the looming weight of starting, the tedious work of finishing or the conflicting feelings of sharing your work with others, creating is scary.

Yet, creating is important. To you, to me, to others.

I’m writing a book.

I’m also blogging behind-the-scenes during the process.

Check for updates on my progress, creative process and maybe some awkward attempts at humor along the way. Hopefully watching my struggles, fears and process might help you do whatever it is you do.

WEEK 1 – A TENTATIVE PLAN

WEEK 2 – PLANNING VS. DOING

Interview with “Creative You” author Jeremy Secrest from One Life Church on Vimeo.

I had the privilege to be interviewed by Matt Breivogal (@mattbreivogal) on creativity for our church and may have had a dance-off in the process.

Basement

July 14, 2013 — 2 Comments

In our house we fight bad guys.

That’s just what we do. Just ask my four-year-old son. Just like Batman and Aslan, we’re brave and protect people.

It’s interesting how brave you feel when everything is ok.

Last night we woke up to the police chasing someone who shot at them at the baseball field across the street from our house and was loose in our neighborhood. We were told to go down to the basement while they searched.

12:30 a.m. found the five of us huddled on the couch in the dark as we told our kids it was like a storm. At that point I wasn’t feeling too brave about fighting real bad guys. The sight of me in my boxers and brown polo with cupcake icing on the shoulder didn’t really give off the Russell Crowe Gladiator “Look out bad guys” vibe either. 

Instead I felt a very tangible helplessness, a weird feeling that all I could do was hide in the basement of my own house.

It’s interesting how much of life we are powerless over and how much we delude ourselves thinking we’re in control.

30 minutes later we were notified they’d found the suspect and everything was ok, but that feeling danced around in my head and heart as I laid in bed.

I’m not in control.

All I can do is hide in the basement. But, that feeling also reaffirmed to me my desire and need for something greater than myself – because I’m not strong enough to fight the bad guys on my own. Although I wouldn’t mind a Batmobile.

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Like Ethan Hunt, I’ve gone rogue to begin work on a new project. Except my going rogue involves taking a break from blogging and posting less on Twitter.

Check back soon for more info and obscure Star Wars references.

Firsts and Familiar

March 19, 2013 — 2 Comments

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We all remember the first date, first kiss, first job, first day at a new school, first time eating a cake pop.

That nervous feeling, the feeling that something new and wonderful has just begun.

Firsts are fun. They make the highlight reel on the story of our lives. We talk about them, laugh about them, and sometimes wish we could experience them again.

First are also simple. It’s easy to see why they’r exciting and romantic, because there’s not much to compare them to.

Which also makes them seem like something we miss out on down the road. “Wait, I’m in my thirties and haven’t had too many firsts in a while, outside of new bills and responsibilities. Where’s my magical moments?” We’re sad that there are no more first kisses, first dates, although cake pops can still be pretty magical.

But maybe we’re looking at it all wrong.

Maybe our firsts don’t have to be our lasts.

Maybe life is meant for not just firsts, but for the familiar. Maybe things like relationships are meant to be uncovered, slowly, year after year, as we discover new meaning and layers to our lives. Like a book you read over and over, finding new layers you hadn’t noticed before. Maybe there are wonderful treasures waiting to be found, which provide much more significance and purpose and satisfaction than the firsts of our lives. Maybe the firsts of our lives are just opening the door to new firsts. And while some of those new firsts may not be as dramatic, I wonder if they provide more lasting impact as the years go by?

Joy and I have been married 8 years today. I’m finding through the bustle of 3 kids running around, working, paying bills, fixing up our house, and all those things that we do, that the real beauty of being married is much less about our firsts, and much more about a continual uncovering and discovery of who Joy is and how we help each other. The appreciation, satisfaction and love grow in a much more real way than our firsts. I believe there’s a strength, a truth, and a beauty that are only achieved through time, and that far outshine chasing new firsts.

Firsts open the door, but it’s what inside that’s the real treasure.

When you think about food creatively you begin to think about
everything creatively – Tim Ferriss, Author of The 4 hr Chef

Tim Ferriss, Author of 4 Hour Chef, on Food and Creativity

Little Surprises

February 22, 2013 — Leave a comment

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Life sometimes feels like we all just jump on to follow where it leads, not knowing where we’re going.

So often our plans turn to nothing, and what we don’t plan turns into some of the greatest parts of our lives.

Approximately 2 years and 7 months ago we found out we were pregnant. Planned.

A few weeks later Joy called and said “It’s two.” Unplanned.

I laughed out loud, got really excited and began searching online for minivans. The next year, for various reasons, turned out to be one of the weirdest, most difficult years ever as we wondered how we could possibly provide for two additional short people.
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Dallas Willard on Hurry

February 20, 2013 — Leave a comment
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Image courtesy of http://behappy.me

Good advice from Dallas Willard for both creativity and for life.