I was speaking to someone last night after they had seen my last two posts. These are the ones updating the world on where the marketing of Promised Land:The Host Rises stands at the moment.
“That’s pretty ballsy of you to do that,” he said.
“Letting people in on your failures,” he replied. “I mean, most people would be talking about how great everything is going and that the books are flying out the door.”
That thought had never crossed my mind. “You mean lie,” I countered.
“I mean… embellish. People like being a part of something that is successful.”
Well, it’s not like I’m unsuccessful. Without bragging or giving up too much information, let’s just say that I pay my accountant $10,000 a year and my tax lawyer $750 an hour. There’s a reason for that and they save me money.
But I get it. People like a story, often a sob story or one about the trials and struggles of a maverick entrepreneur who risks everything and beats the odds to win. It helps to start out the tale as “penniless and on the street”.
Well, that’s my story.
In 1981, I was sharing a two-room, converted chicken coop with a friend and stealing ketchup packets from restaurants, adding them to water to make tomato soup. It was the height of the Rust Belt Recession and forty-year old men who once had factory jobs were flipping hamburgers for minimum wage. Not long after that, I was steam cleaning parts trays in one-hundred degree heat at two bucks an hour. It was part of a government work program whereby it provided a subsidy to top up to minimum and ease the burden on employers. Our employer kept the subsidy and fired those who complained.
Within ten years, I was earning a solid, six-figure income as the national sales director of a plastics company. During the years in between, I worked at newspapers and radio stations, sold insurance and operated a couple of businesses.
When I moved to Canada, I took a major pay cut. Within six months, I was effectively broke. Twenty-six years later, we operate a multi-million dollar, family-owned business.
I’ve had it, lost it, and got it back again. I’m not afraid to lose a few battles because I know how to win the war.
Tomorrow, I’ll explain why I see the next year of blogs as an opportunity; not only for myself (for the most obvious reasons), but also for those following. They will be able to observe in real-time a lab experiment in modern, liaise-faire capitalism