The Last Post on Unknown Jim (or 3 Reasons Why I Failed)

Photo by Kevin Dean (Creative Commons)

Photo by Kevin Dean (Creative Commons)

Failure is inevitable on the road to success.

Why did I fail?

1. I am not “unknown” any longer. I have been discovered. I know what I’m moving toward. God has big plans for me, and I believe He has big plans for you too.

2. Change can not be avoided.  Change is often uncomfortable, unpredictable, and causes pain.  But I will not avoid it. I choose to embrace with joy. Change is constant. If there is no change, there is no growth. Without growth, is something alive? No.

3. Great work rarely happens by accident. Focus and intention are needed to create something amazing. In the early stages, Unknown Jim was not planned. It was a private journal made public, not a blog with focus or intention.

I do not consider the friendships and amazing conversations that took place on this space to be a failure in any way—but rather my greatest success.

I invite you to join me on an incredible journey.  This isn’t really the end, but rather just the beginning. I hope you will join me.

From now on, I will be posting on jimwoodswrites.com.

 

Smells Like Teen (or Adult) Boredom

Photo by Pewari (Creative Commons)

Photo by Pewari (Creative Commons)

 

I tweet on Twitter.

I like on Facebook.

I wear headphones to listen to audio on my computer.

I stare at bright screens filled with shapes and colors.

I read countless words on the page and screen.

Each one is here to entertain me.

 

I rule this virtual kingdom I’ve created.

I pull the strings with the click of a button.

Make no mistake who is in charge of this world.

 

The breeze will blow,

the birds will sing,

the hungry child cries,

and I can’t spend five minutes in silence.

 

5 Steps to Lead When You Don’t Feel Ready

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Photo by Cellar Door Films (Creative Commons)

 

You want me to lead?

No, not me. You want anyone but me.

Does this sound familiar?

What do you do when you’ve been asked to do something you know you’re not ready for?

1. Take a deep breath. Seriously–just breathe. You’ll make it through this, I promise. The voices in your head will tell you terrible things. Ignore them.  This website called No More Voices is very encouraging—you can post your fears and quickly realize you are not alone.

2. Have faith. You were chosen for a reason. You have talents and abilities which are obvious to others but might not be clear to yourself. Don’t believe me? Try this free Strengths Finder assessment here.

3. Prepare as much as possible. Use the time you have to prepare. Whether it is five months or five minutes doesn’t matter. This is the most important step.

4. Realize you’ll never be 100% ready. It’s completely normal to be nervous. If you have followed steps 1-3, there is really not much more you can do.

5. Focus on the big picture. Leading is not about you, but rather it is about others. Listen to the responses of others and think of them first and yourself last.

It can be scary and stressful to step in to a leadership role, but it is necessary. It will be worth it in the long run!

 

Have you ever been placed into a leadership role and you didn’t feel ready? What did you do?

 

 

 

 

The phrase “fake it ’til you make it” is popular today.

The Contents of This Book Changed My Life

The contents of the book Start by Jon Acuff truly changed my life. When I first heard them, I was in the middle of a nervous breakdown. Each heartbeat grew in intensity. I fidgeted to distract myself, but my heart just kept pounding louder and harder.

I was depressed and filled with despair.

Then I heard Jon Acuff ask a question that grabbed my attention: “What do the voices in your head say?” A young lady in the audience replied,”Mine say I’m not smart enough.” A man in his fifties said “Mine tell me my dream is stupid.”  The woman a couple seats from me said, “Mine tell me I’m a loser.”

Upon hearing these answers, I instantly felt better. 

I was not alone—I now had hope. I didn’t know what I wanted to do for my dream. I didn’t know specifically where my passion lied either. But this new sense of peace encouraged me. It let me know I wasn’t alone and now I was on the right path.

Fear is what stops us from being what we know we should be. It is time to not just ignore fear, but to PUNCH IT IN THE FACE.

Jon made this book as helpful as possible to guide you through. Jon is funny, helpful,  and encouraging.  I encourage you to buy this book for yourself and a copy for a friend  you know who needs it too.

If you are filled with fear, there is no shame or judgement in ANY WAY from me. Just check out this awesome website here. See you aren’t alone!

 

If I can help in ANY way please contact me– jim@unknownjim.com

What’s a way YOU can CRUSH fear today?

 

I’m giving away a SIGNED copy of the book Start–to enter just leave a comment and share this post. It is signed by Jon, L.E. and Mcrae!!!

Just leave a comment and click this link to Retweet and you’re  entered!—-> I’m Giving Away a copy of #Startbook signed by @jonacuff! 

Good luck!!!!!!!!!

 

 

Free ebooks are Good. (Here is a Free Copy for You!)

 

 

Photo by Tammy Perlmutter/Cover Design by Gabby Cosco

Community matters. Community can be the difference between shipping or quitting. I am so honored to be a part of a community of writers who want to take action.

Recently, the Writers Unite community I lead published an ebook titled Love Poems Deconstructed and it is NOW available!! It’s  TOTALLY FREE and you can get your copy by  clicking–> right here

How did this happen? This poetry collection was not something I planned in advance. As I led a #writestuff Twitter chat during February of 2013 and I was frustrated talking about writing instead of actually writing.

Then the idea for this project popped in my head.

What if we did an ebook as a community of writers? We could encourage and support each other. What if it was something totally different, like a poetry ebook?

I put the question out there to see if there was any interest, and the response was fantastic. Writers sent in poems on the topic of love and relationships—each one with an interesting, fresh perspective.

I hope you enjoy the ebook. Again you can find it just by clicking—-> right here.  Thanks so much for reading!

 

If you enjoy this ebook, will you please share it with a friend? Thanks!

I’m the Master of Self-Loathing (and How You Can Not Be Like Me)

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Photo by Bobafred (Creative Commons)

 

I woke up this morning in hopes of writing, but instead I paid some bills. I shared a post on Twitter and Facebook.

I wasted a fantastic opportunity to really jump start my day but instead did mundane tasks that require little or no energy.  

Instead of beating myself up about it, I decided to write about it.

I often have an incredible tendency to self-loathe.

“When we don’t know who to hate, we hate ourselves.” Chuck Palahniuk

What does self-loathing accomplish? Not much at all. It just bottles up hate, and then it eventually leaks out.

And as you know, hate leads to the dark side.

 

How can you avoid falling into this trap?

1. Don’t compare to others—do your own thing.

2. Surround yourself with a positive support network: friends, family and other dreamers.

3. Pursue whatever you do with joy. Do what gets you FIRED up.

 

Do you face this challenge as well? How do you avoid this trap?

 

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The Modern Day Writing Rules (and Why They Don’t Work For Me)

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Photo by dbbent (Creative Commons)

These are the rules of writing today:

1. Have a blog and post at least 2-3 times a week.

2. Build up web traffic (via Facebook and Twitter).

3. Get as many comments, retweets and likes as possible.

4. Guest post to get even more traffic.

5. Reuse blog posts in ebooks to sell as products.

6. The more products you have the better—even if the products are repetitive.

7. Follow steps 1-6 to get the attention of publishers and build up your audience.


I’m sure these rules might work for some folks—and that is great—but they don’t work for me. A one-size-fits-all approach does not work for everyone.

So what works for me? Wow, good question. I’m not sure.

What I do know is this—I’m doing my best to learn and grow more everyday.  

I love the freedom of writing short stories, poems, video interviews, podcasts, and writing to encourage you.

I know to have more success* in writing it is important to fit a category. I’m sure as the reader—especially if you are a new reader—some of my writing might be hard to follow from time to time. I want to focus on having shorter, (poetry-ish or poetry-like for those who like poetry) posts on Tuesdays, and longer posts on Fridays.

 

Have you found what works for you with your writing?

 

*I believe success is a personal definition. I find success in being honest and helping others.

 

 

A Real Creative Hero: A Video Interview with Tim Gallen

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Photo by HystericalMark (Creative Commons)

I often talk about creativity on this blog. But I have to be honest; the key is ACTUALLY CREATING, not just talking about creating.

Those who create are heroes in my mind. To actually make something and put yourself out there is a very AWESOME thing. 

Tim Gallen is one of the most creative people I know. He writes all day for a newspaper (just like Clark Kent). He writes all night. He makes TV shows. I sometimes wonder, when does Tim sleep? The answer—well, he does not sleep very much. He’s pretty much a creative Superman (as noted with the great picture behind him in this interview).

Here in this video I spoke with Tim about his current writing projects and his exciting new TV series on Kickstarter, Harbor Shores. It’s a brilliant tongue-in-cheek nod to many of the teen shows of the 90′s. Will you please consider donating toward this fun project or even spreading the word about it—that helps a ton too!

Hope you enjoy the interview! (Email subscribers will need to click the link to view the video on Unknownjim.com– thanks!)

YouTube Preview Image

You can see the very first episode of Harbor Shores right —> HERE.

 

 

 

Blogging Burnout and How to Move Past It (And a Free Ebook!)

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Photo by photoarion (Creative commons)

Blogging burnout is inevitable.

If you aren’t careful, you might even start to hate blogging altogether.

The joy is gone and then you go through the motions.

What do you do then?

Instead of giving up, I realized “It’s Time for a Writing Revolution.”

In this short ebook, I will give you some practical steps to help you figure out what you REALLY want to write about.

No strings attached—this is my gift to you.

 

Just click right here ——-> Writing Revolution Ebook –(Right click and select save as to save.)

 

Have you ever experienced blogging burnout? How did you respond?