Discover more from Carrot Cake
When I rebooted Carrot Cake in its current version, I had just finished a couple of books that felt like they were written at me. Stephen King’s “On Writing” and Anne Lamott’s “Bird by Bird”. Both are legendary books about writing.
I’ve been writing for 15 years. Some of my first blog posts were posted in 2006.
Behold. The worst website address in existence. I can’t believe it’s still up.
That’s coast to coast cycle to cure ms dot blogspot dot com. Imagine trying to verbally spell that over the phone. We all took a crack at writing some entries. If you liked my story about Syracuse, NY, you can see the origins here. The writing is bad.
And then this blog that started when I ran Sullivan Training Systems. This one has some douchey meathead stuff. Just browsing through some of the stuff I published is PAINFUL. Yeesh.
I restarted writing and sharing in public for a couple of reasons. One, I need the practice and the pressure of publishing to poke me forward like a stubborn old mule. And second, I want to do this kind of creative work. Professionally. Full time.
To pay bills I’ve been a struggling entrepreneur and/or salesperson. When I look in the mirror, I know that I’m not a sales guy. I hate sales. I’ve had to become decent at it, but it wears me down to work at companies where you can’t tell the truth. There’s no humanity in it. No room for feelings. Everything is all forward progress and “crushing it” and “rockstars” and rah rah talk littered with terrible war analogies. Even if you were sobbing in the shower this morning you must still show up and pretend that we are doing important work.
My dream is to work on my own terms. There are people who have “substacks” that have hundreds or thousands of readers chipping in five to ten bucks a month. People that generate six figures writing pieces that they want to work on. Why not me?
The last couple of weeks have been hard to get something out the door. My routine has slipped. Typically, I sit at the kitchen table to write with a couple of candles going and tons of coffee. Sometimes a donut. Today I ate two couch cushion sized donuts. Couldn’t help it. One was dusted with crispy flakes of coconut and the other was a chocolate glazed that blistered and cracked from the hot oil before they dipped it into liquid type 2 diabetes.
For the past couple of months, I’ve been able to sit and crank some words out or edit something everyday before my kids get up and on days when they are at their mom’s. Lately, my son Jake insists on sleeping against me. Even in a giant bed with lots of pillows, he likes his head to be on my pillow and our bodies pressed together as we trade blows in a nightly snoring contest. As soon as I try to sneak downstairs he wakes up.
I’m wrestling with trying to reboot a small creative business. I was doing a bit of this work at the beginning of the pandemic 25 years ago. Helping people and companies launch and sustain podcasts and also support them with chunks of written copy for their websites and blogs. Even though everyone has a podcast, it’s still difficult and rewarding to make a compelling show. Coming up with a name and a format and a weekly cadence and pre-show prep and guest bookings. I’ve always felt like there was a small business there. A business that one person could run with support from a couple of 1099 wizards.
I sometimes fantasize about teaching a high school course and being an assistant hockey coach. Or writing for a TV show. Or selling a screenplay for 100k to buy some time to figure things out.
I’m working it out in real time. I’ll keep hacking away at some booze fueled adventure stories and a novel that I’m outlining. I’ll send an email everyday to someone that might need creative help for cash. I’ll keep you posted from time to time.
Thanks for reading.