Real Artists Don't Starve with Jeff Goins
Everybody held. Go when I'm chased. Jarvis. Welcome there. So the Chase Jarvis live show here on Creativelive is no. This show is the show where I sit down with the world's top creators Entrepreneurs thought leaders and I do everything I can to unpack their brains and help you live your dreams and career in hobby and in life. My guest today is the author of Countem Five books Most recent tour we're gonna be talking about here One is called The Art of Work In the 2nd 1 Rial artists don't starve My guest Jeff Coins Chase. Welcome. Thanks. Having me I love you happier here. Got to be here. Long time coming to write. The book's been out for a little bit, like bit. Yeah, you can see after three months like that and I will confess. I don't know. This is like disclosure thing, but I got advance Copy. We have a lot of ah, same friends. Jeremy Coward, Ryan Holiday Holiday. Of course, a lot of folks been on the show, so I got to see this thing early and a congratulations. Thanks to feel good. Li...
ke you, Like, had a thing inside of you. and I've gotten out. Yeah, I mean, it's always good to, like finish something cause you know, there's every things in life that I haven't finished. Uh, I think part of why I finished books is so that I can start the next one. But there's also sort of the grieving process for me that goes into finishing something like, I think this is my best book yet. I'm super proud of it. Uh, I opened it up after it's done and I read something. I go, Hey, that's not half bad. But there's still sort of a grieving process where I have to, like, let go of all the things that this book will never be. Yeah, that is the thing about choice, right? When you do something, you're sort of turning your back. But as you will probably you did contemplate a little bit. If I'm not mistaken that it's like shipping and doing in making That, actually is the at least not the pillar, but one of the pillars that you contemplate the book. But before we go into real, either starve. So I let her stone starve. What I'd like to let's go a little bit back your journey. Yeah, because you yourself I became a writer at some point, and you yourself decided that you weren't about to starve. So let's hear a little bit about your personal journey on the way to writing the book that will get into in just a second. Well, I would not be a writer and entrepreneur. I teach classes for writers online to some kind of write books. And then I teach courses for writers and bloggers. And I wouldn't be doing any of this if I didn't first become a dad. Really? Yeah, the dad was it because you wanted to spend time and have freedom of flick like schedule Or what was this? Because I didn't make enough money to support my wife, who wanted to stay home, be a mom for a little while. So, yeah, I mean, I was never one of those people who, like from the age of five, said, I'm going to be a writer, but it was always this thing, like in the back of my mind. And there's this guy named Parker. Palmer is an author and activist, and he says, before I can tell my life what I want to do with it. I need to listen to my life telling me who I am. And so I was. So I went to college. I had a very practical double major in Spanish and religion. Ah, And then I did the next logical step after that. And I joined a band and toured the country for a year. Perfect. Perfectly logical. See how stacking success I was just, you know, chasing what I was curious about. And we had this tour in Taiwan were real big in Taiwan or you made hundreds when we played this nursing school one time for leaders like 1200. It was like a pre nursing school thing. And, uh, it was an all girls school. All these girls were in uniforms like 1200 Taiwanese young women and, like, they went nuts for us. I remember. I'm seriously I was playing explain electric guitar and I, like, you know, started to solo or something. And there was this balcony of girls up top and, like, pointed the one, like, winked at her and she fainted. No. And at the end of the show, they rushed the stage like, you know, Elvis or the Beatles or something. We had to crawl out the back window. It was amazing. It was incredible. I mean, Jared Leto has been in the show, and he has No, no one's fainted on Leto. Come on. Yeah, amazing. And then we went back to the U. S. You know, playing for, uh, you know, high school assemblies with kids rolling their eyes, you know, asking us to play Nickelback or something. Yes, I did that and then eventually got a job. After that, I moved in Nashville to chase a girl, and, um, she became my wife. And thats well, Chase. Yeah. I realized at some point I needed a real job. And so I worked as a telemarketer for about seven months. And then I got a job as a marketing director for a nonprofit. I don't know anything about marketing. I was I was a writer. I knew how to write, and I I didn't think of myself as a writer, but this guy, the executive director of the organization Ah, he hired me. Um, because I emailed them. I emailed him and like five other people on emails because he had a blogger. Reddit's block and I thought, This is cool. You guys were doing um uh, I'd love to be a part of it and he said, Oh, you let me see a residence on my resume said, Oh, you're a writer And I said, I am And I had, like, like, you know, when you're like 23 and you put every insignificant opportunity on your resume just to go ahead I did this. And one of those things that I did as a writing tutor in college, just as a way to make some money had always been good at English. And also I I I did this job for a while. I read Seth Godin's Blawg every day, which is like a first class education and marketing. Incredible. And about 56 years into. It was in my late twenties, going Is this Is this what I'm supposed to be doing? I didn't hate my job, which I actually think is a really good place to be. If you hate your job, it's unbearable. You have to leave. But I was in a worse place, I think, where I was comfortable. Yeah, and I was anticipating a midlife crisis like I wasn't. There was every life, but I was going. I know. I have seen this story play out. Yeah, like I knew I couldn't screw this up. Really? Um, so I wasn't gonna get fired. It probably wasn't gonna get laid off. I was getting a raise and getting more responsibility every year. And so I said, You wanna do this for the next 10 years? Is this who I am? And that's where that Parker Palmer quote came in. So started listening to my life. I start going conferences, seminars, reading books, just trying to better unpack me. And, as I like, went back into some conference about finding your dream and they, like, made you draw out a line like a timeline of your life. They said, plot out the most significant experiences of your life. Just whatever comes to mind. And, like one of the media came to mind was in sixth grade. I want the school spelling the and a beat in eighth grade and made him cry, which is the only time I ever made some people faint. But this is the only time you made somebody cry. Yeah. I mean, I was this like super chubby, longhaired grunge music listening, insecure kid and like, this is what never place forces like. One thing that I was good at, and so I just held onto it. And, you know, when I was playing music, my favorite part was writing songs. And when I toured with the band, um, my, like the best part of my week was not playing shows for sometimes thousands of people, sometimes dozens. It was every Saturday I had to write a blawg post detailing what we had done that day. I remember we came to San Francisco and we running some bikes and rode all the way out to the mere woods, and I wrote about that. So I look back on like the past, like 20 years of my life, and I realized my life is telling me that I'm supposed to be a writer. And so I started the blawg. Uh, and, um, I just started writing was just a place to practice. And then my wife got pregnant, which doesn't like me saying it, cause it sounds like it like it wasn't a joint venture, but like there's we got pregnant sooner than we thought we were going, Teoh, Um And so we're like, I'm gonna be a dad. And I kept hearing about blogging and making money. I mean, this is 2011. Ah, and so I was like, Well, I gotta figure this out. And I told her I said, I'm gonna find a way to make some money off of this. And she looked at me and she was like, Okay, because throughout my twenties, I just had, like, unfinished idea after unfinished idea. And this was one idea that actually finished, I think embedded in that two or three minutes. There is so many things that I need to unpack or because, you know, you're from to show one of the things that we talked. Well, there's many topics that we talk about that you touched on there. One of in particular is this ability to there is no school or there is no method for sort of finding out who you are, right. And to me, that's the thing that is so Mr active these days, it's it's people will chase some false ambition, ambition, ambition that their parents have your our cultural. For me, it was cultural like if you were going to be successful than you were. You know, a pro athlete doctor like these were just like, sure thing, the bats, you just go. If you could do this, you go do it. And if there is no, there's no actual way to unpack the things that you're supposed to be. So when you talked about listening to yourself, was it the active putting those things on the timeline? Was it the like the messages that were around you? Was it time that you spent walking in the woods meditating like, what was What was that? All those things like help. Let's get tactical for a second. Because to me, this is the hurdle that 50% of the people are listening or watching struggle with. Yeah. I mean, I actually don't think like, uh, you can or should just go do whatever you want to do. Like, um, in the out of work I talk about, like, your sort of sweet spot. And there's lots of people have different versions of this is where, like what you love and what you're good at and what people actually want or need from you were. All those things intersect um And so for me, I was like, I don't just want to say so impassioned about and that's a personal value. Like I know some people can just, like, draw, write or paint, or take photographs all day long and be satisfied with that. But I really wanted to new to know that what I was doing was resonating with somebody else. And I was like, trying to find that out. Like, what am I actually good at? And I wasn't sure I was getting praised for something. So there was demand for something that I didn't love doing, which was my job. I didn't hate it, but I didn't love doing it. I knew I could probably hide their for 10 15 years, but at some point, who was all gonna boil over? So what? Listening to my life looked like and then talking. And I still do this today. Do about every quarter of my friends will get emails for me. And I go here we go again. Like one of these emails from Jeff. Yeah, like I don't have like, I don't have a midlife quarter life crisis high like a quarterly crisis where ago it might do what it must be doing. I feel like a fake again. And it's a good little, you know, um, exercise. But I, um, you know, research. A bunch of friends. I said, what my good at, like, what do I do that adds value to you? You know, like, what do you see in me that I'm missing? Uh, like I said, I went to conferences. I love reading. I read a bunch of books. That book by Parker Palmer is called Let your life speak Fantastic book about vocation and just kind of finding the right kind of work for you. Um, and then, like, there was a little bit of serendipity. You know, there's a little bit of Wu wonky nous Where, um, I went to a conference, and this guy said, Who here doesn't know what their dream is and, like, 60% of the room, including me, raise their hands is what I'm asking the question. And I was like, Ah, I'm not alone, Right? Yeah, I felt great. And then he said, I think you're lying. I think you do know what your dream is, and you're just afraid to admit it. So I just want you to write down the first thing that comes to mind. I was like, OK, open up my notebook and I go Go Kart Racer. Writer, You did you literally right, Right, right. Yeah. And like I said for me, it was just in there. And it wasn't something that I ever thought was possible. I thought writers don't make any money. I thought they starved. Ah, and this had been baked into my mind my whole life. But I was like, Right? And this is what I want. I want to do Steven press field talks about shadow careers, love. We do. These things were good at them, but they're really a shadow of the truth thing. Um and so I wrote that down, and I bring it home to my wife, and we've been married in a few years. At this point, I like Look, I paid $200 to go this seminar. I discovered what my purposes. I'm a writer. Look, it's this writer and she goes, Are you kidding me? I've been telling you that for years, and you're and you're to go to a conference or something like that. E Oh, Yeah, she was mad because she's like, I would tell you that I think some truths about ourselves are hard to recognize until other people affirm and reaffirm that. Here's a few months later, I had joined a person like a group coaching program we call like a mastermind today and something I paid to be a part of is a group of I think, about 11 people and we met for a year, and my boss actually paid for me to do this is what I had a great boss. He bought books for me, would send me the conferences and would pay for coaching for me. He was really were friends even today, uh, really wanted to invest in me. So I did this thing, Um, and like the second meeting were like two months in one of the other participants, not the coach. But when the other participants asked me what my dream waas I said, I I only have a dream and he said, Really, because I thought your dream was to be a writer and I was like, assumes. You said that that hit because again, I'm trying to hide from this thing and other people are seeing it on me. And I said, Well, you know, I guess I'd like to be a writer someday, but that will probably never happen. He said, Jeff, you are a writer. You just need to write And the next day I had this belong that was just sort of sitting there that wasn't doing anything with. The next day, I got up at about 5 a.m. and I wrote a long post, and I did it again the next day the next day, and I did it for the every day for the next year. By the end of that year, I had tens of thousands of readers and in all kinds of hard work in between. But that that moment set into motion a daily discipline that, you know, every day I got a feeling like a fake and a fraud, but I was like, at least I did it. At least I'm starting to move this thing forward and then we got pregnant a little bit. After that, I'm like maybe I can find a way to make some money and all these things started to happen, and it just it felt like the right thing. This there's so many things that are consistent. A The fact that 60% of people you don't know what your dream are. But you really do, um and was it the act of being at this again? I think this is super tackling really, really valuable for people listening. So I want to be methodical. How we go through this. Was it the act of going to a seminar and having the, like, find your life dream as the core principle that got you to say that thing? Or was it some other thing? Was the combination? Is that what you're getting at you? Just that's the listening part. Your friends were saying that you're asking them what you're good at. Your There's actively trying to understand what you should be doing. I think it's all the things somebody asked me. Ah, while back when we launched the art of work sold a bunch of copies and we said, What was the one thing you did to turn this into a best selling book? The one thing we did was lots of things. Yeah, and I think if I could go back 10 years and give myself one skill that I have more of now than I did then and be self awareness. I think so many people, particularly in the vocational space, think they're good at something that they're not good at. Ah, and you can have all the passion in the world. We can get good at things that we're not good at. I don't have a fixed mindset about that, but like if you're not aware that like this is not good, that your American Idol and you're singing off key, you're not aware of that. I mean, that's that's a bad deal. And so the best thing that we can get this is really ingrained in me with my job. But I worked at for seven years is feedback. How'm I doing at this? You know, before we started. So you're asking me how we doing here like that is that is the number one thing that I see with successful people that they do better than most people. They're constantly learning, and they are aware of their weaknesses and either ok with them cause they're going well, I don't do that. I do this, but on the things that they do well there constant trying. Improve those. You referenced the concept of things. You're passionate about. Things you do well, things that other people pay for. Recognizing you, I usually give a shout out to Chris Gill abo Yeah. Um Who's so talented? What was his book called? Born For This? Yeah, Yeah, yeah. I always confuse that with God. Guys born this way. And it's not Lady Gaga guys. Cresskill abo born for this. But then there were run. Yeah, Bon Jovi. Is that right? The boss, They're going. Come on. It was right saying it a wedding on Saturday night. So this overlapping Venn diagram, I think awareness Self awareness Yeah, is key. But the what I have found and tell me if this is true or not, that that is an active process that that doesn't just sort of happen, that you have to sit down Not one day, not three days, 10 days, but pretty regularly and say before you have the answer What is my overlapping thing that I love? That I could see myself doing and that people get paid to do and then I have some aptitude. Yeah. Do you find it? Intends? You have to be intentional about that often? Absolutely, Yeah. I mean, here's a thing like the one of the reasons my wife is so frustrated is because for years I sat on our coat couch in our studio apartment and and I had my laptop and I work from home and I would see all these blog's speak out like these bloggers become authors become, you know, full time writers. And I wanted to do that. I was envious about it, and I got better than them, and she was like, Do something about it. You write a book and I would I would start my little projects. I had eight different blog's that all failed because I would stick with them. Yeah, and, um and I think envy could be a really good thing. I was just going to go there. Yeah, because like, it's bad when I when I see what you're doing ago, that looks cool. I wish I could do that. Whatever, you know, like that's that's a sickness. We look at what other people are doing, and we want the things that they have without asking the question. What did they do to get those things what did they do to get to where they're at? And eventually I just got so frustrated, and that's when I started doing all this stuff. I was like, I'm tired of not even knowing what to do. So I'm gonna go. I'm gonna show up. I'm gonna be where these people are at the conferences at the coffee shops. Do everything I can to just be around this scene to try to get some of this on me, and I'm gonna learn I'm I'm gonna actually believe that I don't know how to do this And be willing, Teoh, do what it takes to get where I'm supposed to because I can't get where you are because I'm not you, but I But I can like you do on this show. I can look at what you're doing and what Chris did when someone so did over there. And I could go wait. There's like, pattern. There is. There are some of the same things that all these people who are at a certain level have all done. And I bet I can extrapolate from that glean something for my own journey so true. And I think one of the other. There's, ah, exercise besides being intentional with, like doing the exercise of what am I good at? What a wife care about that And that is curiosity. And Jason Silva and left, You know, Jason, author, host of a couple television shows. Amazing guys. Been in this Been been on the show. He talks about curiosity, And I think Is that what was going on when you were, like, I'm going to go to this seminar? Was it curiosity? Were you exploring or was it more concrete than Yeah? I mean, I was so insecure, you know? And I think a lot of us are, um we want to know What do I have? What it takes, Um, in the book. Real artist don't started. I tell a story of John Grisham. And I love this story because he didn't start out going. I'm gonna be a writer. He's a lawyer. And he was a new dad. And he goes, you know, You know what? I think I might be able to do that. So what am I gonna do? Am I gonna quit my job? Am I gonna abandon my family or put myself in them in financial dire straits. No, I'm going to get up a little bit early every day I'm write one page. He did this for two years and wrote a book, published the book with some small press. It didn't do well, but he said, Hey, that was fun. I'm gonna do it again Did you know? For another year published a second book, and while he was doing that, he bought like, 1000 copies of the first book and started marketing it himself. It started to kind of pick up, sold the next book to publisher. It was called the Firm. It was a mega bestseller. And then he quit. He became an overnight success and, um, he didn't know, like, I think we want to know. Yeah, and one thing I like to say is clarity comes with action. So we're all waiting for clarity before we act. That's beautiful way we act our way into clarity that is so sharp and it's so concise. Clarity comes with action. So is it fair to say, then that the act of um doing the work is that what created the book, The art of work? Yeah, that and that conceptually because, you know, medical on your share Here, the threat of your arc right here. Yeah. I mean, I love like I don't write about things that I'm an expert out, but I also don't write about things that don't have first hand experience with. So I write about something that I had an experience with. Art of work is about me kind of finding my calling. That's how I understand it, Um, and is going What can I learn from this? And so that book I wrote like like these seven steps for How to Find Your Life's purpose And it felt very flat to me now felt very self help me and I didn't like that. And so I sort of set that aside. And I just heard talking to people, started calling. People actually talk to Chris Gilboa. And I said, How do you find all these amazing stories for your books? He says, Well, I don't talk to the people that, like I'll send an email or something or put something on social and everybody will send their own stories, he goes, but that's where the really good stuff comes from. The really good stuff comes from somebody suggesting somebody else's story because they there's no mixed motive. And I started. I talked to one family who uprooted their entire family Ah, and moved to Burundi, one of the poorest countries in the world, to sort of coffee farm. And I was like, How did you do that? And they're like, Oh, you know, we took a leap when I could have impact that some more And I said, How long did that leap take? They said it took 10 years. That's it really lonely like this, that John Grisham story, right? And sometimes the way we talk about what we've done, the way we tell our stories or even culture, the way culture tell stories, it's not really what happened. And so I did, like I started digging into the stories of other people. And then I started to see these commonalities, and I was like, This is This is how I found my life's work. It's not a science. Not this This, this, this and this. But there is a pattern, you know. And so art is not just like throwing paint against the wall. There are patterns. There is intention alligators. It is a practice, but at the same time, it's not, you know, completely, um, you know, boxed in. So to me, this is a great I'm dying to get in the book. I just give the, like, the folks that are not listening. They're watching. I'm holding the book up right now. It's beautiful. Real artists don't starve. Um, time of strategies for thriving in the new creative age. And I'm going to open our discussion on this book with Michelangelo. Yeah, And as you open the book roughly, I think that's the very thing. That's right. At the very beginning, um, and set the stage for us on on the he's obviously the master painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Um, but what do you unpacked the first chapter for us? Because I think it is a great path for us to then start to walk down around the book that I think is totally, completely loaded with gems. So open the book for us. So, um ah, most people believe you were against the myth. We'll just talk about the U. S. So the The thing that I hear a lot here from photographers I live in Nashville on. And so there's a lot of photographers, a lot of musicians, a lot of writers and a lot of like now, like budding entrepreneurs. And the one thing that I hear amongst all these people is I can't do that because there's no money in that And that could be art. It could be writing it. Could be photography could be music. It could even be your business idea, like being a starving artist is this idea that, um, the thing that you're most passion about other people don't value. So you're gonna have to get a job, right? And I kept hearing this at the same time, I kept meeting people who are killing it, people that you and I both know and also like random people that aren't famous or celebrities or anything. We all know people that are just killing it and they're not famous. They're happy, they're making a great living and they're doing the thing that they love is possible. And, um and so I was like, How do I like this is this thing that been bugging me for years? And then I came across the story about Michelangelo, which I had never heard before. So story is in 2003 this American art historian who was living in Florence, Italy. I discovered this incredible thing, and what he was doing was he was he was trying to date the different scenes of the Sistine Chapel because they had a rough idea of when Michelangelo painted them. But he paid him, of course, of years. Ah, with kind of these, you know, fits and starts. And he wanted no. Okay, when was that painted? Writes a huge ceiling. And Michelangelo was an avid letter writer. So goes the letters, and he's trying to find something out there. Some reference to a commission. And he goes, You could really find any dates and in the letters that match certain scenes. And so he's like, But I bet I could go to the bank records and I could find his bank records. He received his commissions and installments. I could attach this installment to that date To that piece was the idea. So it goes to the bank records. He had a friend of the archives. He looked at the letter m. He said it was that easy. And, uh see here, Michael Michael Michael Jones, Michael Michelangelo, very good. And, um, and he found bank records with the equivalent of hundreds of thousands of dollars in there. Sort of surprised him and he forgets about the letters and he starts just researching this. And he finds some unfinished research about Michelangelo's wealth and long story short. He ends up uncovering a fortune worth over $50 million it made Michelangelo the richest artists of the Renaissance. But not only that, he at his time was the richest artist who have ever lived. And I spoke with an ah, biographer of Michelangelo, a guy named Bill Wallace. William Wallace. Uh, and he is one of leading experts on life of Michelangelo right now. And he said what Michelangelo did was he set a precedent that many artists for generations after followed. He made it possible for an artist in the Renaissance to be wealthy. Before that, they were basically manual labourers. They were like blue collar shopkeepers, and afterwards they were aristocrats and he changed everything. And so when I read, that story was like, Here's a guy, as you said the master top of his game, arguably one of the best artists ever, and he was rich. And look, this is not a night like this doesn't mean you have to be rich at all. It means you don't have to starve. But I think he represents Ah like he's. He's top of his game and he didn't starve. So he is the best at his craft and he's not a sellout. And so he's not starving. He's not a sellout. What is he? I think he's a thriving honest Yeah, that an end to just pull a little bit. Martin the book and given to the reader or the listener watcher here it's like, That's you do a nice job of contrast ing throughout the book. The starving artist versus the thriving RS think the nomenclature is really healthy, too. My personal journey on that same story has to do with I want I studied philosophy and in particular, the philosophy of art, and that's it. It wasn't presented in such a tight way that you did, but it was made clear to us that that Michelangelo was a game changer because he had transitioned out of what people thought was Ah, like an hourly wage rent for things like commissions and that that was impactful for me. Because wait a minute. You like, if you were the belief was people that in that age were just like working for pennies. But if there's commissions involved, then they had a benefactor. And if these artists that have captured our hearts for, you know, centuries, they had benefactors, then what's so bad about me trying to make a living? And it was that story, which one of the things that I really bond with your book over was Wait a minute was this was a similar lever, like, Yeah, it's actually okay to make money as an artist. Yeah. Um, so you there's so many great stories. And I think before we started rolling, the cameras were talking about working on your out of storytelling and how storytelling and research came together in this book and a really nice way. Um, why don't you like the next step in realising that Michelangelo was paid and was a master and that we don't have to starve? What was the jump between that and and the rest of the book? Fill that bill. That lineage. Yeah. So, um, I I write books to answer questions that I have on, but I think other people have to. So I wrote the art of work because, um, a friend of mine when I quit my job, because what's happened to you is rare. So, you know, going back the story of becoming a dad than having a blawg and, like, trying to go. Okay, I'm gonna make money off of this. I mean, basically, in about six months and replace my income, I replaced my wife's income, and then we tripled our household income, and she quit her job right at the very end of her extended maternity leave. And I didn't even know, like she's the finance person in our family. And I had all its money sitting in our PayPal account. I opened it up and go Oh, we're OK. Transfer this to our, uh, big account. And it was It was It was a crazy thing in front of mine. Right before I quit my job. Or again, I was asking for some feedback, so I quit my job. This is this is crazy. Should not do it. He is what's happened. He was rare. And you should consider that this is your calling. And so the thing I love that I mean, I quit my job and I was like, This is a big deal. This isn't just something that happened, but I thought, What if it wasn't rare? What if it didn't have to be rare? And and so that's why I wrote the art of work and the same thing with with this When you go, you were lucky. And nobody who's worked hard likes to be called lucky and yeah, e and look like fortunate things have, of course, totally recognized. Born weight, relatively privileged America, Of course. Your way. Yeah, for sure. Um, but like like I said, I kept meeting two groups of people equally talented. Ah, but one had kind of a business mindset and the other didn't, you know, And they were both really talented. But one was starving. The other was thriving. Assisting bugged me. And I read the Michelangelo story years ago. I clipped it and Evernote and I just let it sit there. And this is kind of how books happen for me. They just sort of I have lots of conversations with people, and it just won't leave me alone and um, and I kept collecting stories, and I went back to Michelangelo, Was all I had was article about this guy and what I could find. This guy is ate some 80 years old, retired, living in Florence. And, um, I I tried. I tried to email him. It didn't work. The email didn't work. I couldn't find a phone number that the man he was like off the grid. He's an eight year old Italian man. It was eight year old American living in Italy, but he lived there for, like, 40 years. Uh, and and so I went to Twitter, and I just searched his name and Twitter and I found some students from 2014 who had taken pictures of him teaching a seminar, and I just I direct. I followed one of those people. A direct message. Them. I said, I want to I want to get a hold. This guy and they said Okay, Yeah, no problem. And they connected me and we were talking on Skype the next day, and I mean, he just like he told me, um, all kinds of crazy stuff about Michelangelo. And so I started reading about his life and I got connected with the Wallace, the biographer, and I realized everything that we think an artist should be. He was not. For the last four years of his life, he had hundreds of employees helping him build this cathedral. Ah, he got millions of dollars per commission. He earned 10 times what his peers did just because he asked for it. I mean, everything he did was just bizarre. I thought, What if he's an archetype for, you know, other people like this? And so, um, I just come out like I started talking to people. I started finding story after story after story of creatives who were thriving, and I realized this is this is the new norm And the book I call it The New Renaissance of Michelangelo kind of started a new thing with, you know, his example where other people could follow. What if we could do that again? And what happened in between Michelangelo and today is this story of the starving artist that has sort of infected our understanding of art and creativity. And just like you said, you read this story about Michelangelo and surprises. You surprise me, It surprises us Because culturally, we still think that artists should starve. And the argument of the book is you don't have to thrive, but whether you you you don't have to starve. But whether you thrive or starve is ultimately a choice that the concept of a starving artist, just one more little piece of history. I think you you, uh, document this in the book is from Paris around LeBeau Him? Yeah, the bohemian lifestyle. And, uh, is it just I don't remember the details, but it was just that, um, wasn't it glorified? Like you're struggling so much for your art or something like that. And that's what made it worth worth the struggle is it for people who were telling themselves they were, um, still worthy. But they weren't really put in all the real work to be a successful artist. Or what was the context? Yeah, in a sense, the question is, where does this horrible myth that so many of us have lived and fought through, and so many who are listening right now are going Oh, my God, That's me. Yeah. So where did that come from? And how can we like I couldn't put it down. So I call the story of a starving artist a myth, not because it's untrue, but because myths or stories that we tell ourselves that help us make sense of our reality, right? So every Christmas morning, presidents appear under the tape under the Christmas tree magically. So parents tell myth about Santa Claus, right? And there are religious myths. There are political Mr our historical myths that help us understand our reality. They could be true, based on truth or not. But when you believe a myth, it affects the way you understand reality and you're in the universe in your life. And so what happens is this guy name on re murder in the mid 19th century is his dad's like a janitor. His mom's like a seamstress, and he wants to be right, and he's surrounded by me. This is the 18 fifties, so Impressionism. I mean, lots of really cool stuff happening in Paris in at the time, and he's surrounded by creative geniuses, and he wants to be one of them. And so he tries toe, you know, write some stuff and it doesn't really go so well for him and a little bit of literary success, no commercial success, and he's frustrated about it. So what he writes is thes Siris of short stories, um, that basically become, eventually the opera La Boheme and Rent. And these other things afterwards. Moulin Rouge are kind of based on this story of these artists who are struggling, living in poverty, and they and and the poverty makes the art better. Sort of the message. He is telling himself a story. We all do this. He's telling himself a story to help him make sense of the reality around him. And you know, what is that? That, um, fable the Fox and the grapes? Fox tries to get the grapes, can't get the great strides, gets grapes, can't get the grapes goes, don't want the grapes anyway. That's a starving artist story, and if we try something, we don't succeed at it. We go well. That's not really art anyway. And he's a sellout because he's making a bunch of money. It's a way to sort of, um, soothe ourselves. And so all I wanted to do with this book was tell the other side of the story. It is equally true. Perhaps even more true today, but we have to be willing to part with some deeply held believes beliefs based on the stories that we tell ourselves. Ah, one of my favorite people is a guy named Thomas Merton, who is a Trappist monk. And he says he talks about the the false self and the true self. And he said, the worst kind of illusions or the ones that we believe about ourselves and those are the hardest to let go. Travis months figured out, don't they? Beer making months, right? We just had some or beer making monks around. Um, I'm gonna open the book here. Just site before I do. I think you also talked earlier about one of the sad. I think I don't remember what exactly the framework, but it was, I think he said it was one of the saddest things that was It was like unfulfilled potential. Or remember what you're working out there. It was like, if you find if you have your calling, but you don't pursue, it was a thread. You just started to go down and you changed gears on me. Um, yeah, I'm there. Uh, I mean, I think one of the this the saddest things. I don't think he was talking or not. But, um, is, um, the unlived life, You know, it's the idea that, um maybe the fox and the grapes, things like your writing off these things so easily, or I remember, Yeah, but I mean, I like we all kind of like a lot of us sit on the couch and go. I wonder what that would be like. And we never try whenever pursue it for, you know, millions of reasons. And I realized that the the thing that I was most afraid of when I started going down this path of being a full time writer was not fail here. It was actually success at the wrong thing. Like, I'm a pretty ambitious guy. I'm the oldest of four kids. I'm like, I got that elder brother. I got to go out and succeed mentality. So almost everything that I do, I do pretty well. So I don't really have any fear that I'm going to be broken a ditch somewhere on. Do you know, maybe that could happen, but I just like I'm gonna find a way. So when I, you know, sort of looking at these. The fork in the road? Yeah. What is that? Mark Twain says I think Mark Twain, When you see a fork in the road, take it. You know, just the idea, Like, do something on some of us get stuck there. And so when I was looking at in a sort, these different passes like, Well, I can stay on this path of least resistance and, you know, be rushing towards middle age going Is this what I thought it would be? Or I can dramatically kind of reinvent myself of the book I called the rule of recreation just like John Grisham did. It's never too late to go. This isn't This isn't what I wanted. This isn't who I am. I'm gonna recreate it. You know, this life of mine and just go down this path and it may not work, but at least I'll have tried. I think the your cajoling right there helped me latch onto it. And it was the the When things are OK. Yeah. And there are so many people. Um I felt like for me, everything was okay, but I was listening to culture and society and the parents and all these different for external pressures that we have. And I think for so many people having basically become a really good cover your counselor from being a reasonably public person and chasing mountain dreams like, Oh, how did you do that? It's incredible. Cool. And what I hear is so much of the well, I got a pretty good right like. But when the thing that's getting up in the morning is your insurance deductible slightly lower or big, Or it's like it's the things that are just so bathed by almost any measure that you're And if that's the sort of justification for staying the course that is societally acceptable or publicly acceptable, it's like being in a relationship that's OK and how if you were going to give some because I think you're pretty prescriptive in the book, what is the what is the, um, what is the prescription? You know, I think one of the like idea that I really like and it's it's It's a thing that, um is sort of a philosophy that my share with some mutual friends and acquaintances that we have people like Tim Ferriss. Ryan Holiday is the idea of apprenticeship. Yeah, I think it's a lost art in the book I talk about actually talking about. Both of the books were talking about, um and and I think it's so important. I was talking to a friend of mine recently about this job that I worked for about 6.5 years and everything was fine. Everything was fine. And I said, You know, what's crazy about that job is not a day goes by, uh, today where I don't use a skill that I learned there. So I mean, like, there were times I didn't like my job. There were times I was really frustrated. Felt misunderstood, you know? It was I was in my early to mid twenties for most of that job, and my boss just throw stuff happy. Yeah, like he hired me as a writer. When I didn't think of myself as a writer, you don't happen to that job. He was. Oh, by the way, you're the marketing director now, like literally. That was what he said. And I said, Oh, I am. We didn't have a marketing director. He was the marketing director. How do I do that? Well, read Seth Godin's Blawg, and so I had to figure that out. And I really consider that season my apprenticeship. And I was recently talking to, ah, creative group it that this company and I said the one thing that I see really successful people doing in various creative fields as they always act like an apprentice. So what is an apprentice to Michelangelo Do this actually, really? Well, they do whatever is required of them. And we don't live in a culture where I go taste, I need, I want I want you to mentor me. I want you to know I want apprentice under you like That's a weird thing and you're busy. Uh, but like we don't like, where is it? Actually that you could do it remotely digitally from you can devour all the things that a person puts out. You can, as you say in the book, put yourself around. Other people were doing this thing, and you're sort of apprenticing by Moses or yep, yeah, like like that's stacked against us is it's just hard. Where's Michelangelo goes to? You know this the most fashionable painter in Florence at the time and says, I want to be your apprentice. And he basically says, Okay, join. You know, the other word boys, you know, cleaning my shop s. So it was kind of baked into the economy. Where is now? You really gotta fight to make these things happen. Which is why most people don't. I think you can't skip this. Like, I think you have to act like an apprentice. And I think you're right. It does start with, like watching the show reading blog's and books and stuff, but everybody that I know and I don't know this about you. But I would guess that it's true. Everybody that I know that has some semblance of influence is pouring into the next generation, as it were. Ah, handful of people. Um, and the way that those people those apprentices got those influencers attention was not by saying Will you mentor me the way they did It was by they started devouring everything that you dio. And then they reported back and said I did this stuff. You already helped me. Thank you. And in the book, I like I lay it out because you talked about being practical. I think one of the best things that you could ever do to try to get a little bit closer to somebody that's a hero. A mentor of yours is Teoh. Email them and just and not ask for anything. Do work and say, Hey, chase, I love this show with Austin clean. When you guys talk about stealing like an artist, it made me realize, you know, with my photography I was trying to be original, and I was just, like, you know, wasting my time. And now I'm devouring all this stuff I have. You and Austin think for that. Thanks so much, you know? And maybe you could work and ask in there. That says, um, is there anything else I should be looking at right now? I'm guessing, like the probability that you responding to that on Twitter email, whatever. Just multiplied by 100. And if you do this again and again and again with, say, a dozen people, I promise you one or two of them are gonna go. This guy, this this girl there for Riel, and I'm gonna start investing more and more time. And I've been fortunate to be apprentice by Cem. Great people, some great minds. And it was not because I asked them for one favor. And they said yes is because I kept showing up saying I've already done the 1,000, things that you've talked about in your books. On your blood on your bob, Wherever you know, you're sharing your influence. And that's how you prove yourself worthy of somebody investing, doing the work, the actual work. Yeah, and reporting back and showing saying it works. Yeah, I did this. You told me to do this. You said jump. I said, Oh, I jumped and look at where landed this Amazing. Thank you. And the people, I think in the book. I'm gonna get a little tactical, will open the book here in a second. But that's I think you talk about Put yourself in this in the place where I remember what we called it, like seen go to the scene. Yeah, I call that the other 50% which is 50% is the making of the sharing. And then if you just make and share, But you sit in your parents basement like it's gonna be very hard for you to connect with other people. So for me, the other 50% is going to what you call this is the scene. So wanting it, um I think for the it's a part of the mentee or being involved in the mentorship relationship is sort of participating, and you have to either digitally or physically go there and meet these people. So break down, like what do you mean by like be a part of the scene? Yes, The book is like 12 rules of the new Renaissance. I call them and these air rules and I like artists don't like rules. But I mean, a rule is if you do it like things typically work out for you. And if you don't, you're sort of rolling the dice, right. So we have rules for our son who is five right now because he needs structured, understand that life has consequences, and one of the consequences of not following these rules, like you might continue to starve. And so these were things that I observed that historically and then also contemporary, rarely contemporary artists, uh, we're doing and it led to their success, and they're doing lots of other things. These 12 things that I saw most thriving artists do, and they're also 12. Things that starting are actively did not do so. I don't need to do that. I need a market might work. You can stand on its own and one of those things, and it's challenging. But I think it's possible, is what I call the rule of the scene, which is you gotta show up and be a part of whatever's going on in your industry. And I think every city has a scene. I think every industry has a scene, you know. But I have a friend who moved here recently, moved to San Francisco, were here right now, um, from San Diego, like San Diego's a cool city. But he realized like there was some stuff happening here that he wanted to be around, and he was single and he had some flexibility to make that happen. Uh, she just, you know, showed up and then things air working much better for him. And so the idea is, you've gotta move, and the first movement is probably across the room, not across the country for me living in Nashville. Like I said, I sat on the couch for five years and I was like I don't live in New York. I don't live in San San Francisco. I just live in national. Moved here for a girl. I work from my home. I could never be a part of that stuff. And I said, Well, wait a second. Like there are some things happening here. We have meetups. Uh, I just noticed, because I would like e stock people, you know, like they're all hanging out at that coffee shop. Whatever worked at that coffee shop and a couple of things happen when you join the scene. One you do. You get to be around sometimes some of your heroes and maybe even develop a relationship. I think the much more realistic and even better thing is you get to be around all the other people who are kind of where you're at that want to be a part of that scene. And I think one of the best things that we all can do is find other people that want to be where we are in our, like, actually doing that were doing They want it and link up with them, hang out, promote their work. I texted a friend of mine I was like, Remember, we started our blog's six years ago and I would text you every time I had a block post and ask you to go to read it and up voted. And I would do the same thing for you and like these again, I remember that it was ridiculous. Ridiculous. Uh, but I mean, like, that's what we did, you know, we were there to support each other, and it's a lonely place when you're getting started. Reinventing yourself, recreating yourself and so going to a scene which, which is like a physical place where you can connect with other like minded people getting encouragement, getting correction. I think it is essential to success dialogue. It's like feedback. You talked about feedback and awareness, and this is one of the ways that we can create that for ourselves and for our community. And I think you made you underscored something that's really important is that it happens in every city. And if it doesn't, then you can start it. Yeah, join one or create with you and that and the it may be is meet ups, and there are trade shows, and every you could be the group who quilts Onley in purple fabric on Tuesdays in May, and there is a is a club for that on the Internet. And so, like finding your tribe, we could go down a big Seth code and all there, but I won't. But I think you know, the joining a scene is a really prudent thing. You talked about the 12 Rules. You've got them into a couple of buckets here. I'm just gonna throw a couple others, and we will talk about a little preview. I think is really well organized fun. Um, well, you already hinted at Austin Clan Stop trying to be original name of one of the chapters. So little tribute to him, but also to the millennia. It's or is very much about reconstituting ideas. So talk to me about how you presented that in the book. Um, so there's a historian by the name of Will Durant. He says nothing is new except arrangement. I love that. Here's historian, right, Like saying there's nothing new under the sun. Even that idea, in his quote is, is hailing back to a biblical quote from a Cleese nasties. Um and, uh, yeah, I mean, it's It's fascinating how much this sort of plays out in a variety of fields. Jim Henson, Incredible pioneer of Muppets puppetry The Muppets of Dark Crystal Sesame Street I read several biographies about him. He's probably my favorite, uh, creatives, because he was. He was such a pure artist, and yet he used the business to make his art, and the way he started was he was, you know, doing commercials for a coffee company called Wilkins Coffee. And there were, like 12th commercials conceal YouTube of the bizarre there, black and white there two puppets and is Wilkins and won't Kins. And Wilkin says, You know, do you like coffee? And Duncan says no and he, like, blows his head off with Can I buy Will get Scotty. But what Jim was doing and when she would eventually did, was revolutionary. And yet, when he received a lifetime achievement award for Public Tree, he said, uh, he propped this guy named Burr Tillstrom, who was basically the first person to put published on television. They said Bird Tillstrom did Mawr for bringing puppets on the TV than I ever did. And so here's this guy whom we will remember for probably hundreds of years who has created an incredible legacy. And he goes, All I did was what this guy did, but I just did a little bit differently. And and Jim was actually when he was doing those commercials. Ah, he was a senior in college, making the equivalent of $750,000 a year, another starving artist thing. And he is like he was bored. He wanted to be a painter because he didn't think is being a real artist. And so he took a six week sabbatical. He and his girlfriend, Jane, we're running this business together. He left it the business to her. He goes to Europe for six weeks, basically backpacks, and what he sees in Europe is puppet shows where adults and kids are going together. Whereas in America, the time that didn't really happen is that what if we could do this? What if we could steal this and rearrange it, uh, and share it, you know, in America, And that's exactly what he did. So nothing is new except arrangement were just copying what people are doing. We're curating it, and then we're re sharing it. You know, in our the concept of the remix on the remix, everything is a remix. That's right. Picasso talks about this a lot that he's there, the real artists steal. Um, so I think that's a fascinating chapter. We've talked about Austin a little bit. Yeah, we already touched on Apprentice. How about don't work for free? This is like the news, the hardest chapter for me to write because, um, being an apprentice right is like you're you're doing work for free. And so the idea here is not that, like when you get started, you may not do something to sort of build your portfolio. Um, but like, you don't need to do that for years. And I meet lots of creatives makers, photographers, writers who literally, you know, for five years or working for free in hopes of catching a break. And if you set a precedent that you work for free, I mean, you're basically saying that your work is is worthless and and and this was something that I saw was pretty common amongst the men that did this survey with hundreds of working creatives and all of those that were thriving. I mean, they did not do work for free. Maybe every once in a while they would donate a project for philanthropy. Ah, but this idea that you're discounting your raids or you're doing lots of stuff for free. Teoh break in Well, for lead to some opportunity. It doesn't work. And so the counterpoints that is always work for something opportunity doesn't pay the bills. And when we do stuff for free, and I did this for years, um, we think it's going to lead to something we aren't quite sure why why we're doing it. Speaking is this way where lots, if you want you to come their conferences and speak for free, and I do that sparingly either cause I want to help a friend or because I know that I speak for this particular event, it's going to, you know, validate or legitimize me in this industry. And I can, you know, take this and leverage somewhere else. So, like, that's worth something. I remember when I first started speaking, Um, I, um I couldn't get any gigs, and so I started doing gigs for free and and and so he said, Don't do that. I was like, Well, What should I do? There's had charge something, something. Yeah, I said okay. I guess maybe, like $250. They said Yeah. And so that next time I was going to speaking, somebody called me and said, Well, you speak at a conference. I said, Well, you know, what's your budget? This is always, you know, like it's free will cover your travel, and I So I really can't do it for you No less than 50 bucks and like, Oh, yeah, we could do that. I was like, Wait. Like you said it was zero, you know, And I realized there was room to sort of negotiate. And then other times, you know, I would speak for free in exchange for all the video and audio that I could put on my website. And that was worth something to me. So it could be whatever value want to get out of the get something out of it. You're spending hours. You're often using materials. Don't do it just cause it's going to lead to some opportunity and you don't know what that is. It's gonna lead to nothing. Yeah, I'm loving this little exercise here. I can keep shooting you. Uh, thank you for signing this book for you. By the way, my galley copy wasn't signed. Um uh, I didn't I didn't send that. So collaborate with others. Is this a little bit like the scene extension of the scene? Yeah. So there's, like, three chapters right next to each other. Yeah, there's, like a trilogy basically on. I had to break them apart. But it's one idea, which is like when you get around people that are like minded cool stuff happens and there's no such thing as a solitary genius. And so the first idea is you have to join a scene like you had a go where people are be high tech, set me high, which is Superfund name to say, uh, he wrote the authoritative book on creativity called creativity. And in that book, he says one of the best ways to be more creative is to not will yourself to do it, but to go someplace where creativity is already happening. So that's the idea of joining a scene. And when you join a scene, you're going to basically build a network that you can then leave that scene. So when heading way moves to Paris to become a writer, joining the expatriate community that lived there. Uh, you know, he leaves after about eight years, and he has that network that makes him the famous author is today, um, that he kind of carries around with him for the rest of his life. And so, you know, you go someplace you connect with people, But then ultimately the network leads to some sort of collaboration. And so this is the idea of a mastermind group. It's the idea of doing partnerships connecting with other people working on stuff together. Because when you collaborate, it's it's better. And my favorite story about that is how Jr talking wrote The Lord. The rings. And this story is Tolkien and C. S. Lewis and about 17 other men met weekly in Oxford every Tuesday night. Ah, and they would get together and they would read something that they're working on. And Tolkien and Lewis became friends because they were the first to people. They're both professors at Oxford that, um, like they had ever shared their work with. And so they were very shy about because their professors teaching literature, But they're also like writing poems and stuff and then I call you do this to. And then they started sharing it, and eventually they started This mastermind group called the Inklings and talking started. He worked on The Hobbit. It was successful, and then he had a contract work on The Lord of the Rings. And one day he and Lewis go out to lunch and Lewis has talking. How's it going? Toking says. It's horrible. I'm stuck. I'm a few chapters, and I havent written in months. I think I'm gonna quit. And hey, let's his friend read the manuscript and Lewis is our token. Don't you know that hobbits are only interesting when they're placed in a non hobbit like circumstances? And this is a light bulb for talking, he goes, Oh, yeah, they're gonna leave the Shire. And if you've read the little rings or seen the movie like there's the chapters, the first few chapters 1st 30 minutes of the movie just like watching fireworks there in this chart, it's sort of like tension is building. But he's stuck there because he was such a perfectionist. He was kind of a nerd about the languages in the history he needed the voice of a friend saying, You could do better. Ah, a friend of mine who's research on the lives of the inklings, our names. Diana glare. She calls these people resonate. Er's we'll need resonate er's in our lives like that friend was for me where he goes. Oh, Jeff, you are a writer. I am. Sometimes we're just the last people to recognize the gifts that we have and community creates that kind of residents that helps us understand what our best work isn't also also helps understand. We're falling short. Uh, um, Lewis was telling talking, This is not your best work. You can do better And And what happened was he ended up writing the Lord of the Rings, one of the most successful books of all time. He did it by bringing it, not by being in solitary genius and the man was a genius. He did it by bringing his works in progress every single week, sharing it with his friends and getting feedback. And that is the only way that you could do great work. Amazing. There eyes another thread that I need to pull on. You touched on a couple of times I've been trying to put there so many good ideas coming. I'm trying to put pins in these things. That's my job. That's why I'm here. Um, and I learned this, um, from Sir Richard Branson. And you, You You've mentioned it a couple times here. It's that there is a belief, and you have really gone there. So when I ask you together there, there's a belief that you have to bet it all. Yeah, and to me, I think you sites in researching the book if I remember correctly. Um, And when I sit here and I'm thinking as I'm listening to you about the takeaways from the people who are listening and watching right now and I know there's some way to big percentage of people who are defying that, how their problem is X and why they've got a family and a mortgage, and I you know, I can't do it because of all these things. And what would you tell those people? I would say, Don't take a leap. Build a bridge. It is sort of my tweet herbal version of that, Um and I believe this for years. So when I going back to John Grisham story. You know, he does this for basically 34 years before he goes full time. Reminder. That's the league. He was a lawyer and then wrote the books and the Yeah, um, and that was sort of my story to um So I started the blawg. I basically build the audience to about 10,000 subscribers. Uh, while I'm doing that, my wife gets pregnant. Ah. Then I started thinking maybe I could make some money off of this. And so then I like to a survey and, you know, launch an e book and then launch, of course, and then publish a book and basically takes two years, and I'd replace my income. And like I said, we had basically a year year and then some of runway, and I was like, Okay, I guess I could do this like it wasn't a big, you know, leap of faith. You didn't mortgage the house and yeah, and go all in on your freelance writing career is put your feet up. Yeah, And in like, part of that was because I had responsibilities and I couldn't do that part. That was I knew my wife would kick my butt if I try to do that. It was also just the wisdom of seeing people do this. Yes, like I had had a friend who had worked for 10 years at a corporate job. He hated it. He quit his job to be a writer, and six months later he was broke. And I was like, If I'm going to do this, I don't want to look back like I don't want to do this for a year and then go have to find a job again because they will have replaced me and then I'll have to go somewhere else. And I like I am a writer. Therefore, I want to spend the next 2030 40 years rest my life writing. So I've got a really like I'll wait like I'll. I'll take my time, uh, and just do this in the margins practice in the margins for a couple of years until it's obvious to me and everybody else that this is the next step. So in the book, so I just always have that idea. But I would hear people say crazy stuff like Take a leap man and and like I said. I think sometimes we sort of sanitizer stories. Yeah, like that couple that I talked to who quit their jobs and moved Africa. How long that take that They called the leap. Yeah, to 10 years. They didn't move to Burundi. They first moved to South Africa. And they did nonprofit development work there to understand the culture. And then when that kind of like after 10 years of doing that, they were like, Oh, I think we really want to get into coffee. Let's go to Burundi and And then, I mean, that was still a big deal, right? Um but it took years, and I think most success stories when you really get down to it, they're slower than we realize. There are people, So you just came out of nowhere. How good does that feel? You know? Oh, yeah, I did just come out of nowhere. I'm special. It makes me feel special. But when in reality like this took eight years because I had all these blog's that had failed and I tried to do these businesses that didn't work and I applied for these different jobs that got turned down. But everything was sort of building to this moment, and I was OK with it. Taking time and not long ago, I ran across this study from the University of Wisconsin. Just very fascinating study. They studied the trajectory of think 5000 American entrepreneurs for 15 years, and they split, tested it basically and and half of them that they looked at, basically quit their jobs to go become business owners. And then the other half built bridge. They didn't quit their job yet. They started a business, kept their job and, you know, eventually quit their jobs. Transition. Uh, the ones who quit their jobs to go all in were 33% more likely to fail. They just so like, can you take a leap? And the net will appear. Maybe sometimes is the safer option to just take your time and build a bridge and try to like, I want to be creating for a lifetime. I want to make a body of work, not just do one thing, cause I'm pissed about the job that I have, so I'm willing to be a little bit more patient about it, and it's frustrating, but I But I see this And maybe you see this too. The people who you know, the people have been doing what I've been doing for even the past five years that are still doing it now. I mean, there's like like the all the people that was hanging out with that there's still been doing for the past five years. I mean, there's like, a couple of them, uh, and and the ones who have endured are the ones who are patient, who didn't just quit their jobs and start something and hope it worked out. And the ones who failed were those who were riskier. And so I do think it's it's sort of, ah misunderstanding in our culture that you got to take some big risk, even the point that I made with Branson and to me why it's remarkable is not because, uh of Richard, but because of someone who has Richard's success and who you believe went all in and he told you he didn't do that. He's like his. His ways mitigate the downside, like just you know, we'll talk about Virgin America for a second. So it's a virgin company license. The name he was one of the major investors, and he found a way to get it so that if the airline didn't work that either Airbus or Boeing would buy anything was Airbus would buy the planes back from him at near full price like he pre negotiated. And you think like, Oh my God, that's not being optimistic. You're playing for failure. It's like, No, that's actually how you transition out of being involved in some of the other things and picking up this new thing like, how do we reduce? You know, people say I have a house I haven't worried to have. Ah, well, yeah, but have you gone to the people that you're closest to and told them that this is just not this thing, But you have a really sort of an existential crisis where you need to be doing something else for a living because you're not happy. And there's nothing worse than success. But without fulfillment is borrowing from Tony Robbins. Yeah, that's the That's the catastrophic part. That's sort of like the Bays job, but the baby's life and the and how can we then transition? And if you include other people in the journey and you work with what you have rather than what you don't have. And what you have is people who love you. You have a roof over your house, so you have a six year we job. How can you make it into a 32 hour week job? What are you doing with your five? Denying not just the 9 to 5. And I defined by and large that there's a you know, you mentioned the stories, the myths that we tell ourselves that this is impossible once you have, ah, a mortgage and extra wires e that it's impossible. I think I've done a nice job of the research was really interesting and heard that before Yeah, I don't under that I thought was fascinating. And I mean, that was like, We hear that if you want to be an entrepreneur, uh, you don't take a risk, you gotta go all in. And the most successful people that I know are not pessimists, but they always understand the downside. The only time that I ever, like really leapt uh, was a time when I thought I had considered the worst case scenario, which is we'll do this. We'll kind of take this risk spend about $70,000. I went to my wife. This was two years into me being a writer and having this business. And I said, This is the This is the down side. We've got $70,000 in her bank account. We do this upside is, you know, we'll make 100 grand, you know, pretty quickly. And she's like, Okay, let's do it. That was not the worst case scenario early. It could be a little worst case scenario was that everything would go, you know, way different than we thought. And we'd lose $200,000 then get it with a $50,000 tax bill than RCP. A didn't anticipate. And And I was like, Oh, my God, what am I going to dio? You know? And, you know, you figure it out and and and I remember going to my wife and I cross crying was going I'm sorry I did this to us. It was eager. Was me trying to, you know, buy prestige on do something that I thought, you know, Like when you succeeded one thing, Uh, you kind of think you can succeeded anything. At least early on that you go tell us that I was like, I could do that. I know. Business. Yeah. Capital breathe. I'm a business guy, Got a block, you know things. And I totally fail because I was out of my depths. And, um and we're talking my wife about it, and, um, I said, I'm so sorry. She says you know him best. To almost three years. We've never had to worry about you taking care of us. Um and, um, you know, so you'll figure it out. Just don't do this again. That's a no no, I will ever promise on. And, you know, I just like it's not that you can't anticipate like that you can anticipate family or you can. But it was like at that moment, I realized, um, it's not like risk can get you hurt. And the best thing that I can do as an entrepreneur as a writer as somebody wants to be creating for a lifetime, is make sure that I have things set up. That worst case scenario I can live to fight another day. I can live to write another book, create another thing, just keep going. Somebody once criticized Walt Disney kind of at the pinnacle of his career. Where you're just making movies to make money, he said. Oh, no, no, We don't make movies to make money. We make money so that we can make more movies I didn't know that was a Disney quote. I've been saying that since I, I had literally figured like Why do I? Yeah, because I goes back to the start of people that I know that a real artist, they're not starting to doing well. Like what? Because I just kept thinking of projects that I wanted to do and projects took money. If you don't want to, you know, be beholding to the man or whatever the narrative you've told ourselves. How true is that for you? What's the like? Is it how it is this? Ah, a theme that in your book, real artists adopt. They make money to make art versus make hard to make money. One of my favorite people I talked to in this book interviewed basically like half the stories or contemporary artists. As I mentioned, the other half are like historical people. Picasso, 12th are, um, Michelangelo and so on. Um, I talked to Alan being who is the fourth man to walk on the moon. And he's a full time finalist today and his stories basically, he always kind of painted for fun and hey, gets to 50 years old and we're not doing moon missions anymore. And he's looking around at NASA. This isn't like the eighties, I think, and he sees all these people who could do his job better than him. He does anybody can. Anybody can fly the space shuttle. Anybody could do it. I dio, uh, but how many astronauts can paint the moon from firsthand experience? And the answer was nobody. Nobody could do it. Nobody else had been to the moon and could paint. And he told me, He goes, You know, I am a man because I said to him, I said, You know, like you could quit your job like cheese, your passion of art He goes, Hang on a second job. I'm a man. I'm a Navy man on. Then I joined NASA like I'm a man who's always done his duty and the way I see it, because I because I loved painting, I was good at it on. I've been to the moon, I could do something. I could capture a part of human history that may never be captured again. I thought it was. I felt it was my duty to quit NASA and become a full time artist. If you go to Alan Bean's website today, you can buy. You can buy paintings, huge paintings of you know, his experiences on the moon on their anywhere from 50 to $400, because he is the only guy who does that. But how cool is that? That's another great take away. Is that the answer for his art was in here. What? One of the personal experiences. What makes me different? Not just better. There are people. What's this last name again? Alan Being okay being There are people who are much better painters and Ellen B. I haven't even seen the work. I just know, but there's some insane talent out there, But what he did is something different and something that was unique to him. If you block on a frickin moon, yeah, you know what else he did? Uh, I I love the story. It's just super fun. And the point of it is not so that you could make a bunch of money. The point is he can charge those prices because the only guy has done and he's using when only what he has. But he's making money so that he can make more art. And he's been doing this for years now. Ah, and he really considers it a duty. A calling like this is his thing. Work on Lee. He can dio. But he had this sort of dilemma where he was going, our museum. He's like, I'm no Monet. I can't do it What he can dio because so what I have And he's literally sitting in a studio. And when you walk on the moon, as one does, they let you keep all the stuff. But you keep the suit, the shovel, everything, all that stuff, like in the corner of Israeli looks at it and he goes, Oh, yeah, I can use that And his His suit was still caked on moon dust. And so if you buy an Alan being painting, it's only it only cost $50,000. Ah, every piece has a little piece of moon dust like he like, takes a little moon does off the suit and throws it on the painting. You're literally a piece of the moon. So, yeah. I mean, like, he's taking, Like what? On Lee he has and using it to his advantage. And he's making money off of his art so that he can keep making our and keep doing his duty. I love it. I love it. So you have written a bunch of books you've talked about teaching, reading your teaching writing. That's one of the singer in San Francisco were super lucky to have you on creativelive tell us about it. So your classes called surviving two successful, starving to successful service. That I think that some bad Matt who wrote that. All right, you're and reading, uh, starving. Too successful? Um, how to become a full time writer. Yeah. And is it in this class that you unpack a lot more of the detail or what? But it folks. Yeah. Yeah. So you know, I'm taking this idea of not being a starving artist. As I mentioned at the beginning, you could be a starving artist in anything in business in your bakery shop. Ah, and in your writing career. and as a writer, I have a lot of experience with that. Um, and I just see a lot of writers who think they can't make money off of writing. I mean, it's something I hear authors give me any money doing this. I'm like I'm making money doing this. What's my friends were making money doing this. You can't suck and make money doing this, but like you can't make money doing this. So, yeah, um, the classes. Just practically walking through what I call the writers roadmap, which is a 12 step process going from starting with your message to making $10,000 a month, which we sort of like. That's That's how I define making a living just about any economy that's, you know, a living wage, good living. And it's possible. And I work with thousands of clients and students every year, walking them through this process in every year. I see them doing this, and I think it's frustrating for me is sometimes seeing, you know, online education. I I think you played for sure. This to, um, is you have a lot of fakers who, like had, like, had an experience once and they go. This is true for me. So it must be true for you. And what is it has been fun for me doing this for about five years now. I'm six years is walking with people, seeing them achieve stuff that I've never achieved. Like I worked with this guy, Um, just over the past year and he grew his email is 200,000 people in months, and we use What should I do? It's like E. I said, What do you want to use it? I want to write books said Go get a frickin book Deal Man goes and gets a $220,000 book contract. My first book contract was for $6000 on I was his first book, and the next day I was talking to a writer and she says, Well, you know, you can't you can't make much money off of your first book. I was like, Let me tell you a story and so, yeah, I mean it. It begins with this idea of mindset. You've gotta want toe win. You've got to discard the idea of the starving artist. But if you do the work, you're going to see the results. And so that's what we're teaching people is the stuff that I see thriving writers do every single day, every single year, and they succeed Super happy to have you on the creative life platform that's, you know you talked about. There's so much hokey pokey out there if people don't want. That's why we curate the heck out of people who are on the platform. Super happy to have you back for a second class. Um, and thank you so much for sharing your journey on creating real artists. Don't starve. Must read. I read it in two days. Wow. Yeah, it's. And I think it's, uh it's not just a tribute to your wisdom and brilliance and writing, but the research in the fact that now is on incredible time to be a creator. We have more tools than ever before these accessed information to folks like you and the people you, um, feature in the book. Congratulations, man. Show. Thank you. All right, I'll see again. Probably. Hopefully