The Write to Roam

The Personal Blog of Ethan Brooks

How I Wrote a “Bestseller” In A Day (and more importantly, why)

Have you ever had an idea for a product or service that was just so great you knew the world would love it? Were you ever surprised when after weeks of work, and hundreds or even thousands of dollars invested, nobody seemed to want what you were selling?

Most business owners have done this at one point or another. When I was getting started, I did it several times. Our knee-jerk reaction is to dive into developing a product or service based on whether or not we think there’s demand for it. But the better way is to first confirm the demand, then spend money developing the solution.

I’d heard

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7 Days of Calm: What Happened When I Started Meditating Consistently

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Photo Cred: Moyann Brenn

Rather than try and stick to a bunch of resolutions this year, I’ve resolved to try a handful of new habits out for a short period of time, and see if they have any positive effect on my life. I’ve heard somewhere that it takes twenty-one days, or iterations, to makes something a habit, and so this is the number I chose for myself. I thought I’d take one new thing, try it consistently for twenty-one days, regardless of how I felt during that time, then decide whether or not to keep it at the end.

I’ve talked before about this short-term method of planning, and how it not only makes things easier, but also keeps you flexible so that you can take advantage of opportunities that may arise throughout the course of your experiment.

The very first habit I tried to cultivate was journaling. And each night, starting from the new year, I sat down with my notebook to answer two specific questions:

  1. What wins did I have today?
  2. What is one thing I learned?

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A Case for Short Term Goals and Un-Planning

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Today’s December 2nd, which means today marks exactly three months since I put my business on hold, and set off on the Appalachian Trail.

My, how things have changed.

In August, I lived in my parents’ basement in Connecticut. Today, I live in a finished attic on a rural English estate with a walled garden and an indoor pool (and in a week I’ll live somewhere else entirely). Could I have seen any of this coming? Could I have planned it?

a-case-for-short-term-goals-and-un-planning

In his interview with Derek Halpern, three-time best-selling author Tim Ferriss says that the key to his shocking success hasn’t been strategic planning, as many might first think. Instead, he lives by a series of three to six month goals and micro experiments. There are at least two major benefits for doing this.

First, he says, it lets him

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The Write to Roam TV: Episode 3

This has been a fun little experiment, and I’m happy to present the third and (for now) final episode of my little cooking-show-slash-small-biz-advice session. In this bit I talk about the power of books, dealing with haters, and the oh-so-important question of whom you need to become in order to have what you want.

Here are links to the resources I mentioned:

This isn’t goodbye forever. I’ve enjoyed this format, and think we may be stumbling towards something cool. I’ve got a couple of changes I want to make to the overall focus, timing, and quality, but look forward to version 2.0

In the meantime, if you got any value out of this, have questions or feedback, or just want to say hey, reach out and find me on twitter @EthanDBrooks.

The Write to Roam TV: Episode 2

For those of you who may have just stumbled across this, this is an experiment I’m doing where — in order to get away from my desk for a little while each day — I drop on down to the kitchen, cook a tasty meal, and discuss facets of travel, entrepreneurship, and small business that are on my mind from the day. In this episode, I whip up a quick favorite from Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Chef .

Here is a link to episode 1 are links to any of the resources I talked about:

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