jlaix's Blog

jlaix
 
Okay, thought I'd start out the article today with a photo of a hot ass chick, as I wager you'd prefer seeing that instead of my goofy mug photoshopped on some weird tableau every time you check the home page.

I'm smart like that yo.

null


Anyway....

Unless this is your first visit to RSD Nation, you're undoubtedly aware that in August of 2009, Real Social Dynamics published my first full-fledged book, a novelization of my experiences in the game entitled "Nine Ball."

Finishing this book represented a turning point in my life, as it was the culmination of literally everything I'd been working toward since my childhood. In many ways, it was the "coming of age ritual" that I (and so many others like me in modern Western society) never had; the event that signified my passage into true manhood.

Yaaaaay.... my balls finally dropped. At age 33.

I will never forget the feeling I had on that late spring evening when I typed out the last words of the book, on page three-hundred and ninety-six:

"I pump that shit, screaming, and we go flying over the hill, then coast down Precita, all the way home."

I just sat there for a second, looking at the cursor blink at the end of the sentence. After a short while, I said, out loud to nobody in particular, "That's it. I'm done." The words themselves held a deeper meaning than the surface context. I really had made it, "all the way home." It was one of those moments where you don't know whether to cry or laugh or what. I did neither. I just sat there with a strange, calm, happy feeling. Kind of nodding with a new understanding.

Everything before this was just the prelude, and my life could really begin now. I knew this, and it was real, and it was amazing.

After this, I submitted the book to the boys upstairs and we began the process of editing, and then putting in all the work for the launch. Then of course, the inevitable work of promotion.

Dr. Dre once opined that the actual creative act in making an album is only 20%; the other 80% is hustling to promote the damn thing. I'm totally fine with that. Hell, I LIKE that part.

null


I went down to LA last summer in the middle of the launch hype to help out on Tyler's Bootcamp and it just so happened that he had some journalists along that weekend from Sinning In LA, a local counter-culture magazine. These guys were very interested in RSD and wanted to know more about the book, so we flipped them a copy and I sat down with them to do a little Q&A.

They just put up their review of the book this week. You can see a little snippet of the interview we did here... I like it cause I look TOTALLY FUCKIN TAN AND RIPPED (or sunburned and retaining water, depending on how you look at it).



Anyway, the main point I want to get across with this article has nothing to do with all this aftermath stuff. I wanted to talk about the process of writing the book itself.

During the launch and in the sales copy Tyler often noted that this book was a project that I'd literally spent fifteen years of my life on, and that the actual process of putting it all together took me almost a year. A year of eight-hour days, five days a week, sitting in front of the computer till my brain felt utterly fried. Only to go to sleep, wake up and do it all over again.

It was a trip, because in the process of doing this, over time I could actually feel myself getting incrementally smarter, in the same way one gets physically stronger, bit by bit, over time when you go to the gym.

This was not like writing some article, or even a 30-page paper for school. I actually had to increase the "RAM" in my brain to be able to juggle the scope of a 400 page book all at once, to be able to see how all the thematic elements worked together, the plot etc etc.

Some people upon reading the book may have been surprised that it took me as long as it did. "Well it's mostly field reports hurr durr there's no way it took that long man."

I mean, seriously? Until you've personally written a book on the order of this one, just shut the fuck up. You may think you know, but you have no idea of what the process is like. After this experience I doubt I will ever again dismiss anything another professional does as being "easy" until I have first hand experience doing it.

Thing is, with RSD we don't want to make hits, we want to put out classics, programs that will truly stand the test of time. Couple that with the intensely personal nature of this book and it may begin to become clear why it took so long. This had to be perfect, down to every comma and word choice.

In fact, that's one of the reasons why I put off writing the damn thing for so long. The book ends in 2006. At the time, I sort of vaguely knew what the book was going to entail and how it was going to end, yet I didn't even start the project until late 2008.

At first, I thought, "Oh, well, this will be pretty easy. I'll just slap the reports together and add some shit at the end." However, once I started to go through everything, it began to dawn on me what a truly herculean task this thing was going to be.

null


First of all, I was going to have to go through and select which of the several thousand posts in my archives were relevant to the themes I wanted to explore and would actually propel the story forward while fitting into a coherent narrative. Every single word in that book is in there for a reason. I had to develop an overarching structure for the book that made sense, before I even embarked on the writing. I wanted it to have a certain symmetry, like a song or a poem. A very LONG song or poem. A beginning, middle, a climax (or two) and a distinct ending.

Then, before doing anything else, I was going to have to translate the reports themselves from "OMGWTFLOL" internet language into something viewable by human eyes. That meant putting in actual punctuation, paragraphs, correcting a bazillion grammatical errors and so on. This alone ended up taking several months.

(And oddly enough, even with seven people editing it, THIRTEEN typos made it through to the final edition. sigh.)

After this, I would have to weave all the threads together skillfully and seamlessly so all the stylistic pieces fit... so people would be aware of it without being aware of it, so to speak. I wanted this to be a book that you people could enjoy on a variety of levels. Like, you could go as deep as you wanted with it... if you just wanted to laugh at the crazy Jeffy doing his crazy shit, that's great; if you wanted to explore the more profound lessons and pathos and all that, well you could do that too.

All of this was pretty daunting, but the worst part, the part that really made me put it off for so long, was that I knew I would have to go back and re-live everything that I had gone through. And not just revisit it, really and truly EXPERIENCE IT AGAIN on a visceral, emotional level. This was an absolute necessity if the book was going to have the impact I wanted. I wasn't gonna be able to just go through the motions; if this thing was going to resonate on any sort of real level with the reader, I would have to feel everything just as deeply as the day it happened, from the demented stripper mania right up to that night at the dinner table when the SWAT team kicked in the door and dragged my father away.

I was like, "Really? Cause I already went through that once, and it SUCKED."

Nonetheless, as time passed, it started to become clear that if I didn't sack up and write this book NOW, I might never write it. I was in that sort of perfect period where I had enough distance from the events to be more objective about them, but right on the danger zone where if I put it off much longer I would start to forget critical details.

It was time to step up and get this shit out of my head, once and for all. I HAD to do this, for me.

So I sat down and started. Every day that passed, every mind-numbing 8-hour session in front of the computer yielded maybe 0.25% progress towards the completion of the project. It was unbelievably frustrating, to sit and do so much work and have it mean so little.

Then the next day. And the next. Not only was it hard work intellectually, but I was also putting myself through the fuckin wringer emotionally. I cried about once a week. I would casually mention this in set when I told girls I was writing a book, and they would stare at me, incredulous. I would complain to anyone who would listen about the difficulty of the process, hoping for some kind of insight or at the very least camaraderie. Nobody understood or seemed to care.

How could they?

Months passed, with no end in sight, no light at the end of the tunnel whatsoever. I would often sit in front of the computer for hours, not actually working but doing elaborate calculations on how long it would take to finish, much like the guy who comes on Bootcamp and just wants to know how long it will take for him to "get good." I would sit there and calculate how long each section might end up being, then add them up over and over again to get different totals of how long the book might be.

"If I do this many pages a day, and the book is going to be this many pages, then it will take me this long." And on and on and on. Many days, I spent more time doing these calculations and ruminating over how long it would take than I spent doing actual work!

And again, every day, putting in hours and hours for no perceptible improvement.

Finally, something snapped. I just said to myself, "ENOUGH. Nobody gives a fuck about your bullshit. It doesn't matter how long it's going to take, even if it takes TEN YEARS to get done. Even though you can't see the light at the end of the tunnel, there's nothing else you can do but keep your head down and continue plugging away, and have faith that it will be done SOMEDAY. Shut the fuck up and WORK."

null


In the end, that's what it took. Once I adopted that attitude, it didn't matter. I slammed through and hammered the rest of the book out in a few months. And the rest is history, as they say.

For me, this might have been the most important lesson I got from the whole experience of writing the book: If you're working towards some far off goal, whether it's the perfect physique, your magnum opus, or even SICK GAME, if you are constantly wringing your hands over "how long it's going to take" and generally "sweating the process," you're doing yourself a disservice.

Not only are you engaging in a pointless exercise, you are often DETRACTING from your own progress, expending energy on bullshit, energy that could be used in striving towards the achievement of the actual goal.

So that's why I wanted to write up this article... to share this small yet ever-so-vital lesson with you guys.

That's why I do this job, to be honest. That's why I continue to put myself out there in a straightforward fashion, despite the trolls, the morons, the h8rz, whatever. I realized when I wrote the book that it would be "pearls before swine" to a lot of these fucktards but it doesn't matter. 

When I started writing it, it was all about me. Like I knew ever since the day that SWAT team kicked the door in that eventually this would have to come out. And it took 17 years to do so. But by the time I was finished I knew that it wasn't just for me anymore… it was for everyone else who ever felt the same way or experienced on any level the things that I did.

I wrote this shit for "US."

From the bottom of my heart, thank you.

-j
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#1
flux

flux

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Join Date: 11/24/2009 | Posts: 556

Hell of an achievement writing a book.
I'd like to write a book about my life sometime, even if I AM the only person that ever reads it tounge lol.
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#2
Hamlet

Hamlet

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Join Date: 12/08/2008 | Posts: 589

Rites of passage FTW
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#3
Abower

Abower

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Join Date: 08/26/2007 | Posts: 1762

Thx for the article Jeff
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#4
Kuz

Kuz

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Join Date: 09/05/2006 | Posts: 2661

Water retention?

D00d, that's straight up blubber. Must be from when your "dirty" bulking experiment went awry.
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#5
jlaix

jlaix

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Join Date: 08/20/2006 | Posts: 8772

Kuz wrote:
Water retention?

D00d, that's straight up blubber. Must be from when your "dirty" bulking experiment went awry.
Eh, not really. I was actually pretty lean at that time, at about 185. This pic below was taken a couple weeks before that interview:

null

So there was a little pooch but hey. Sue me. Oh wait ur in Britain u can't.
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#6

pringles

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Join Date: 04/28/2009 | Posts: 998

Kuz jeffy just qualified himself to you.....now you have the rights to everything that goes into his ass....im jealous

sweet article, any ideas for a rite of passage that doesn't involve writing a book or bootcamp? Or do i just have to make my own and then force my kids to do it
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#7
Calavera

Calavera

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Join Date: 08/02/2007 | Posts: 719

I honour and salute you my friend. Taking the negatives you had in your life, and making them into strengths is a daunting, tiring task. This is one of the most important ATTITUDES, MINDSETS and beliefs that you are just sharing. Guys, if you want to be successful in life take this attitude!

I spent WAY too much of my life MENTALLY MASTURBATINg, rather then taking action. Just saying.. fUCK IT! I will just do this shit, and doing it with grim determination. Ironically, i'm semi doing it right now.

You are one of my main heroes Jeff Allen! Thanks for inspiring me to live a better life, your determination and work ethic is motivating, and inspiring. It has helped me heal the wounds that I have acquired through this journey.

P.S. did you find that guy being a little bit too self amusing, and almost trying to eclipse you in the interview? Maybe i just read this wrong, when I find people being self amusing when I try to be serious (I do that to chodes in set,) i get kind of irked. What do you think about that? Sounds like a stupid belief, I re-watched the video and you guys were both just being chill it seems.

You are also very eloquent when you speak, did that just come from reading tons of books? I just love your word choice, sounds so fucking rude. "Instincts," "Mechanics," lol, sounds epic as fuck. Teach me oh wise one.

Calavera
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#8
Kuz

Kuz

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Join Date: 09/05/2006 | Posts: 2661

jlaix wrote:

Kuz wrote:
Water retention?

D00d, that's straight up blubber. Must be from when your "dirty" bulking experiment went awry.
Eh, not really. I was actually pretty lean at that time, at about 185. This pic below was taken a couple weeks before that interview:

null

So there was a little pooch but hey. Sue me. Oh wait ur in Britain u can't.


Woah. Nice work.
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#9
jlaix

jlaix

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Join Date: 08/20/2006 | Posts: 8772

momooj wrote:
Kuz jeffy just qualified himself to you.....now you have the rights to everything that goes into his ass....im jealous
"Now"? 

He already did. 
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#10
jlaix

jlaix

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Join Date: 08/20/2006 | Posts: 8772

Kuz wrote:
Woah. Nice work.
Ahhhh yeaaaaah, about that... the winter wasn't super kind to my bf%. 

The cycle never ends. Oh well.. summer of ripped abs part 19 here we go
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#11
Gseus

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Join Date: 09/04/2008 | Posts: 915

"Everything before this was just the prelude, and my life could really begin now. I knew this, and it was real, and it was amazing. " Woah...

By the way, how many copies did you already sell? Well I have no idea what to expect from such a book, so I'm curious. 100? 1000? 10000?
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#12
Kuz

Kuz

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Join Date: 09/05/2006 | Posts: 2661

momooj wrote:
Kuz jeffy just qualified himself to you.....now you have the rights to everything that goes into his ass....im jealous

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#13
Kuz

Kuz

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jlaix wrote:

Kuz wrote:
Woah. Nice work.
Ahhhh yeaaaaah, about that... the winter wasn't super kind to my bf%. 

The cycle never ends. Oh well.. summer of ripped abs part 19 here we go
ha, mate i'm on the biggest fucking cut of my LIFE.

I'm going for body-builder shredded for the summer. This has to start NOW in March to hit the mark in late June.

My work out capacity is pretty intense (but then it always is teehee) and i'm also obtaining a little help from my friends Mr Albuterol and Mr Metformin embarrassed

http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/jon4.htm

But a massive amount of protein is required for this route, as Mr Albuterol is very catabolic
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#14
Kuz

Kuz

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Join Date: 09/05/2006 | Posts: 2661

oh by the way, i'm catching a 5am flight to New York in the coming morning, so i could well sue your dego ass.

and i'm smoking copius amounts of the herb to keep me awakee until then. oiieeee, gonna be a long night.

anyway, sorry for hi-jacking your thread. You already know wot your book meant to me. *swoon*

*exiting stage left*
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#15

pringles

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Join Date: 04/28/2009 | Posts: 998

Kuz wrote:
KUZ IS A CUNT
[/b]
thats all i heard
(this was a joke modzzzz)
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#16

YaBoiRayDawg

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Join Date: 03/02/2009 | Posts: 1499

RSD LIKES THICK WOMEN. fuck ya.
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#17
TOOBAD

TOOBAD

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Join Date: 10/31/2006 | Posts: 1242

Jeffy you my hero! Makes me wanna wear a worn free T shirt and become a pimp! Seriously though Awesome man! Yes that's a capital A on that Awesome!
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#18
Dick Gallo

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Join Date: 08/13/2008 | Posts: 1947

Jeffy, raw shit, my friend.

Much appreciated.

Who's the girl btw in the beginning...
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#19
Ramin

Ramin

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Join Date: 07/04/2009 | Posts: 371

I have three Questions

1. How can I buy the book (I live in Germany) when I was on the site I could only choice states in the us

2. Why the fuck came a SWAT team to your House and get your father???

3.  Did you fuck the superhot chick at the beginning in your appartment (looked a bit like it was at your place)
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#20
n8dog24

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Join Date: 09/21/2009 | Posts: 61

Kindred spirits.  Thanks Jeffy.  Very cool article.
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#21
Reprobate

Reprobate

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Join Date: 03/09/2010 | Posts: 75

 An epic book Jeffy.
I enjoyed it a lot and it's the first thing i hand my boys who want in on the game. Makes them see that it's not all ass and clubbing. There's more to it and that part's probably the most important piece. 
Cheers bro
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#22
TheBear

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Join Date: 07/29/2008 | Posts: 354

Thanks for the book Jeffy. It was a fun read for those of us familiar with your FR's and the Jeffy Show, because it filled in some of the gaps. We appreciate the work you put in to write your story. At the end of the day that's what makes it all happen...hard work.
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#23

ninja08

Respected Member

Join Date: 06/21/2008 | Posts: 607

Hey man, sorry for being a dick.

Its funny how I continue refering back to the pages I read in your book. I find myself remembering things about what you'd said and it helps me piece together bigger pictures in my own life. 

I use passages from the book, the ones I remember, to explain stuff that I learn from other sources like my Social Psych classes and etc.. 

No doubt it was a tough endeavor to pursue I can't say I've ever completed a task as long and influencial, which is what I want my life to be about. Ironically enough I hadn't shown that on the forums, or towards you. 

The majority of my posts regaurding your book are negative and I gotta say I'm totally sorry for that, cause I'd totally recommend the book to anyone looking to improve their life. Unfortunately the only people I know who would be remotely interested in reading it most likely wouldn't finish it and would bash me for it. Given those characteristics I dont talk to them any longer. 

Anyways. Thanks Jeff. 
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#24

slumdog

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Join Date: 12/27/2008 | Posts: 47

I wrote a book a long time ago, was an English major. I empathize with the personal demons and lack of immediate reward that are an implicit part of the process. I imagine writing the scene with your father where you forgive and ultimately pity him was difficult.  It put my hair on end even to read it. Gave me strong insight into my own fucked up family and my own semi-asshole of a dad. 

The analogy between writing a book and learning pick up is apt. There are a handful of books in the community that really touch the core of what it is to be excellent. I think Cohen's "Mastery" is a phenomenal read, and he does talk about loving the long road throughout his guide.

The point is although we are taught by guys like Stephen Covey to have the goal in mind, there is deep wisdom in not only focusing on the long term outcome, but to have the ability to be consumed and even enjoy to the daily process. Thank you for the reminder to focus on that with my own journeys.
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#25
FoodBuddha~

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Join Date: 07/11/2007 | Posts: 3978

It was also inspiring on that level of writing something of substance.
I was thinking that, sure, it'd be cool to have a sequel and all.  But that it would be cooler to make a foray directly into fiction, using the material you've amassed in the field as a basis.
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#26
Diamondog

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Join Date: 12/23/2009 | Posts: 324

Nine Ball was the first book I ever read, that I actually walked through the streets reading.  I didn't care if I looked strange.  I was careful to look both ways for cars and bicycles, and for cars making a legal right turn on red, even my cross sign said, "Walk."
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#27
Deft

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Join Date: 06/16/2008 | Posts: 2040

Word up jeff

Cool shit
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#28
snowdog

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Join Date: 06/18/2009 | Posts: 518

I'm actually writing two books at the moment. One is a novel, a creative outlet for me. Sometimes I can't sleep and I have all these ideas and shit... I just have to write them down. Plenty of boozing, drugs and sex involved in the stories. There isn't a red wire yet, but I'm sure I'll come up with something. Currently around 25.000 words. Some friends I showed some pieces told me it reminded them of Bukowski. I'll never say something like that myself, but it's very cool to hear. 

The other one is about my ongoing journey as I'm working at getting better at pickup. It's basically a sum-up about the things I learned over the years. How I went from a social retard to a very social guy. The part about how I went from a very social guy to a womanizer is still in the works, but slowly taking shape as well. :) Currently around 22.000 words and starting to look like something. I really like how it's shaping up so far. It'll be done when I'm happy with the way I can pickup chicks.

When it's done, I'll put it on the internet as a PDF for free, unless RSD wants to sell it for me ;)
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#29
Neurooo

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Join Date: 02/15/2010 | Posts: 15

I ve wrote maybe twenty boxes full of writting....
I started a fiction book about a dude living in a hotel picking up chicks, a player with nihlistic thouthgs,
but i didn t follow threw, i m actually respectfull for people who write books.
Because writting is easy, i can write non stop for ever,
But assembling pieces into a book, is absolutly not the same exercice.

Writting on a piece of paper for ever feels good,
assembling a book, using logic thoughs is painfull... it s not the same brain region  i guess..
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#30
The Duck ✘

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Join Date: 12/02/2006 | Posts: 1353

The book turned out amazing. 

It's a piece of work no one can take away from you and I'm positive the process taught you some valuable lessons.

At the moment I'm writing a 40 page Bachelor Thesis and have only begun to see a glimpse of what that process is like - although yours was 10x as grimey.

All the best and thanks for writing it.
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#31

amanwithaplan

Member

Join Date: 07/31/2009 | Posts: 86

The whole not sweating the process thing is probably one of the more pivotal if not the most important things I've got from RSD. It's reduced a lot of negativity, bullshit, mindless analyzing, mental masturbation and that kind of stuff. It could still use work but man, having that inner peace is just crazy. You can't explain it to random people because they'll never understand. But yeah.
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#32
hyeckhyeah

hyeckhyeah

Member

Join Date: 03/05/2010 | Posts: 29

Awesome stuff. Really appreciate the article. Writing like this is the reason why I like RSD- you guys are multi faceted in you endeavours. I think of you guys as my mastermind group *blushes* lmao. Awesome stuff J-dawg x
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#33
ozymandias

ozymandias

Member

Join Date: 11/27/2009 | Posts: 33

it's kinda lame that we (humans) can't have a epiphany and then it kinda appeals to you in every activity you do.
i remember you saying in transformations : just do it! like in nike. at the moment i don't know what exactly you were referring to (probably open or so) but it seems that you couldn't apply it to writing.
on the other hand i think it's kinda rewarding that these epiphanies keep popping in your face even at your stage.
it's good to hear for a newb like me
i like the feeling when the mental knot looses itself.
paz
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#34
alyosha11

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Join Date: 08/17/2009 | Posts: 342

"'If I do this many pages a day, and the book is going to be this many pages, then it will take me this long.' And on and on and on. Many days, I spent more time doing these calculations and ruminating over how long it would take than I spent doing actual work!

And again, every day, putting in hours and hours for no perceptible improve"


I know that feeling. Combined with "no, i cant write til i have it EXACTLY right in my head... it has to be PERFECT!!" its the biggest thing holding me back with my own project.

Thanks for the book Jeff, peace.
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#35

Katalyst

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Join Date: 05/16/2008 | Posts: 615

Lovely fuckin article.

Truer words haven't been spoken. Straight wisdom.
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#36

RSDNICO

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Join Date: 04/07/2011 | Posts: 457

f
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