I started my blog 14 YEARS AGO today! I started it in 2008 as a way of keeping myself accountable to my goal of writing my first novel.
I’d been wanting to write a full-length novel since the late 90s when I wrote my first novella (a short novel).
But no matter how many times I started—and I started many times—I never made it all the way through. Stuff always got in the way, and I was over it.
I was turning 25 that year, and I knew it was time to get my shit together if I was ever going to become the writer and author I dreamed of being.
I set the goal of writing the first full draft of my first novel by my birthday that year (in Sept). But by mid-March, I still hadn’t taken action on it.
Time was ticking away and I knew if I didn’t do something extreme, it was never gonna happen. My procrastination was controlling me way too much at that point in my life.
So on March 22, 2008, I made a decision.
I decided to start a blog and share my journey to writing my first novel. I figured that was the only way I would actually hold myself accountable to doing it.
Every week, I wrote one blog post and shared everything I was learning, the lessons I was getting from it all, and how I was overcoming my procrastination.
And by September of that same year, I finished the first draft of my first novel. In fact, I finished it two weeks before my deadline, on a laptop with a dying battery, by candlelight because we were in the middle of Hurricane Ike and we had no power or water at my house—
I was mofo committed!
Having my blog made all the difference for me.
There were people reading my posts every week. Rooting for me to hit my goal. And I refused to let them down.
The accountability that came from starting my blog changed everything for me and my writing career.
Fast-forward 14 years, and today I’m the author of 15 books—three fiction (one novel and two novellas), and 12 nonfiction (three of which became bestsellers on Amazon). I’ve also written four screenplays, one of which placed as a semi-finalist in a prominent contest.
I actually became the author I always dreamed I would be back in 2008 when my procrastination was so bad I would’ve rather scrubbed my bathroom floor on my hands and knees than sit down to write (and did many times).
And it all happened for one very specific reason: I decided to say fuck the how.
I decided that it didn’t matter how I made it happen, so long as I did.
And by releasing my desire to be a successful author to the Universe and trusting that it would happen… it did.
First I was led to start a blog, which gave me the motivation to finally write my novel draft. That then led me down a five-year journey of learning storytelling craft and, most importantly, story structure (thanks Larry Brooks!)
Which then led me to writing nonfiction books, which led me to quitting my day job to be a full-time author.
And then that led me to finally publishing my debut novel (in 2015). Which led to more nonfiction books.
And eventually it led me to screenwriting which I fell in love with. And that led to writing more screenplays which turned into more novellas and more nonfiction books.
And on and on and on the journey goes.
All from starting a little blog back in 2008.
All from saying yes to what I always knew my life was meant to be about.
All from deciding that the how didn’t matter so long as I continued to move forward and did not quit.
You can make anything happen in your life. Any dream. Any desire.
BUT—you have to be willing to set the how aside, and then just get started doing whatever you can do from where you are right now and with what you know and have access to in the moment.
The rest will unfold as you do.
The rest you’ll be inspired to. Nudged to. Called to.
And eventually, as they say, the rest will be history.
Dream life or bust,