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Florian HuberMemberOctober 10, 2021 at 1:40 pm
The somewhat short version: Florian, Bavarian, 46, married to a very patient wife, father of 1 son (almost 5) and 1 son (to be born in January).
A few months ago I asked Tom during a live Q&A whether to A) focus on the book I have been working on for 15 years, trying to make it work financially, or B) focus on something else to make money first, then write the book afterwards. He told me I was approaching this wrong, I should write the book for passion, whether there was money in it or not, while finding a day job I could love enough to do it for the rest of my life, whether I ever made money with the book or not.
That answer has challenged me ever since. From experience I know that I get bored with jobs once the initial steep learning curve is behind me (I would classify myself as what Barbara Sher called a “scanner”, a person with a wide variety of interests who has a very hard time staying in a job when something new and more interesting beckons). I have worked professionally as a freelance video editor for ten years now, but I have no more passion for it at all, even though my skill level has risen significantly. I can edit much faster and better than I could five years ago – I just don’t want to do it anymore. Based on my experience on various jobs I believe that the only job I _could_ “love enough to do it for the rest of my life” IS the job I want to do out of passion: writing my novels (which, true scanner style, includes creating the worlds they take place in, through computer graphics of the locations, composing music, drawing maps and more, but also building up an audience).
This puts me back on square one. If success is “feeling good about myself when I’m by myself”, I know I can only be really successful (by that definition) when I write every day until I cannot sensibly write any more (3-4 hours, at least), while building up enough leverage to make a significant positive impact in the world, such that I can honestly say: I did the best I could to contribute to a better world for future generations (including, but not just, my own kids). Currently, I do neither.
I joined the challenge, even though it’s “not very sensible” to pile on another demand on my time right now, because I want to get through this impasse. I want to write full-time, while providing well for my growing family, and having a positive impact on the world, starting as soon as possible. I have trouble accepting or understanding the answer Tom gave me, and I want to figure out why that is. Do I have it wrong?
ITU has helped me tremendously already. Thanks to the amazing people in my accountability group I have finally written and edited the first chapters of my book to a point where I dared to publish them, after 15 years of solitary toil. I set up a website to put them on so I could let some people read them, and have gotten enough positive feedback to think that I might be “onto something” with my writing.
Now I want to take the next step. I just don’t know what that is… yet!