I tried to break from nursing in 2006 go into real estate sales. You can match the exact hour the bottom fell out of the housing market to getting my real estate license printed. Maybe it’s my ego talking here, but I’m pretty sure the housing crash was my fault.
I tried way too hard and too long. We basically lost our entire nest egg trying to make a go of real estate.
I went back to nursing in 2008.
By late 2009 it becomes apparent that the lack of pay raises from our non-profit jobs and increase in fuel / heating oil is slowly taking us down and we need either to bail on the house, or we need 10-12k increased income a year.
Also by late 2009 it’s become apparent that I have the prototype ideas for MMSL and they seem potentially marketable. Jennifer and I have a long talk about it, it’s going to be on my real name. I’m out of ideas for how else we can get ahead. This seems like it. Jennifer agrees.
Jan 2010 I start the MMSL blog, the goal being to write the blog, turn it into a book and make MMSL my “part-time job” hopefully making that 10-12k a year. We’re still drifting backwards into debt though. Hopefully the Blog to Book approach turns into a Book to Expert jump as well. Expert gets the big payoff… eventually.
In mid 2010 we cashed out my quite moderate 401k to pay down credit cards and have money to promote the then to be written Primer. In August 2010 we spent a fair amount of that cash to say goodbye to dad in New Zealand. He died in November 2010. I wasn’t a happy camper then.
2010 winter was beyond horrible with oil heat and record snow. Furnace broke. Both cars needed $1000 repairs. We can’t pay the mortgage by Feb 2011.
Defer the taxes and publish the Primer end of March 2011 with literally no money for anything other than uploading the book. That’s why the cover looks like it does.
Get offered national media attention due to a viral post about Jennifer and I having sex nearly every day of our marriage. Inside Edition calls, we get interviewed and are on national television. We are now 100% public and basically outed in real life to any and all friends and family… and our jobs as well. We get dragged to Human Resources for being dangerously monogamous or something. The blog gets an extra 800 hits, no sales spike. Inside Edition was pointless. Fuck.
At least the the Primer income keeps us afloat all 2011. I think I get to actually spend my first “book money” for something fun around Thanksgiving 2011.
Primer keeps selling, by March 2012 I’m basically exhausted from working nursing full time and answering 2-4 hours of email a day for MMSL. Put my notice in. Done with nursing in May 2012.
Try writing revised Primer. Bleh. Have an outline, but really just feels like moving everything around rather than “better”. I give up trying to write the Primer second edition.
State of Connecticut says I can’t do MMSL stuff as coaching as it is too close to marriage counseling. Ugh. Start the MMSL forum instead… see where that goes.
Try writing revised Primer second attempt. Bleh bleh bleh. Just shuffling things around rather than improving them. Give up again.
Primer still selling reasonably well. Have a seminar retreat weekend for the Army. Goes fairly well, but endless drama before the weekend getting books printed for the weekend. Endless drama getting paid after the weekend. Final summary, about six weeks work prepping for weekend, final summary made about $2000 after expenses. Army funding change, no further interest in more retreats.
Make third attempt to revise Primer, hate it. I get about 20% into writing it and just feel overwhelmed with dread, depression and darkness. It’s good writing, but… still meh.
Hatch plan for little “Red Pill Rule Book”, make great progress and get to 95% complete. Put on hold due to interest from third party in turning everything into a partnership and bringing everything to market as a seminar empire. I have intellectual capital, they have financial capital and prior experience in training industry. Needs a new Primer revision to base everything off. Okay. Doing it. We’re on our way finally. Jennifer stops being “supportive wife” and becomes “believing wife”, a subtle but important change.
Running the forum slowly sucking the life force from me. It’s meant to suck up all the email contact I was trying to handle, but never quite becomes something I can step away from without running off the rails.
Dec 2012 - Feb 2013 making some progress on bringing revised Primer content… the fourth attempt at it. Insights from the forum are useful. Fly to California for meet and greet with potential partner. All going well. All going well. All going… silence… dread… fuck. Partner reports his wife will likely become screaming banshee and destroy everything publicly. I’m out. About as mutual and sad of a parting of the ways as anyone could expect. Truly.
I ask Jennifer to be CEO of whatever it is I do. Her Pepper Potts, me Tony Stark. She accepts. We brainstorm new approach. Go time.
March 2013. I start writing the Primer revision for now the fifth time. BEAST MODE ACTIVATED. I’ve got everything now. This is a true Primer revision. It’s like the old Primer, just better laid out, more insight, fixing everything. Stronger, harder, richer, funny as hell and darker. Much darker. It’s truthful, but brutal as a runaway combine harvester. I have 80 pages of perfect pain written… and I can’t write anything more. It just feels so… wrong.
April 8th 2013 I throw them all away…
Jennifer: That has a sense of doom to it.
Athol: Oh. It’s meant to be a cliffhanger.
Jennifer: You kinda suck sometimes you know that right?
Athol: I’m adorable though.
Jennifer: /sigh Dammit.