Tag Archives: Stephen Pressfield

Interview with Jim Woods

In 2012, I had the pleasure of connecting with Jim Woods on Twitter and then meeting him in person at Jon Acuff‘s Quitter Conference held in Nashville. Jim was so kind, encouraging and gracious toward me. I’ve witnessed his growth as a writer and I am honored to be interviewing him.

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1) When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I think it was when I wrote a report in the fourth grade. I was really into nature and I wrote about snakes. I realized how much fun it could be to do research and then telling a story about my findings.

2) How did you develop the confidence to find your voice as a writer?

I think it was more through practice and trial and error. That being said, writing how you talk is always a great place to start.

3) Were there any books you read that helped shape and mold you as a writer?

Absolutely! I love Steven Pressfield‘s Do The Work and War of Art. Also, I have a lot of fiction influences: Edgar Allen Poe, Elmore Leonard and J.D. Salinger.

3) What did you do before you transitioned into being a full-time writer?

I was an accountant for over 15 years. That’s hard to believe now!

4) How long did the process take? What steps did you take in making your dream a reality?

About three years. It was a long long three years. Writing as much as possible, networking, going to conferences, meeting as many people for coffee as possible.

5) Now that you have succeeded, what is it like being on the other side of the rainbow? Has it been anything like you had imagined?

It’s like a good struggle, like when you’re tired after working really hard. You’re exhausted, but at the same time very satisfied.

To answer your other question, it’s harder than I thought it would be. It can be hard to unplug from the work.

6) What does your writing process look like?

I like to watch my work as much as possible. I am a momentum-based emotional writer so I like to find some easy wins and then go from there.

7) What is the hardest thing about being a full-time writer?

It’s pretty lonely and rejection comes with the territory.

8) How do you encourage yourself to keep going?

I talk to other writers and learn from them. Whatever the circumstance, it is very likely that someone else can relate.

9) Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

I just want to work with good people and keep telling good stories.

10) Are you working on any new projects?

About a month ago I created an event called the Finish Your Book Summit where I interviewed 16 authors who have written over 100 books. It’s still live, so you can access the interviews by going to finishyourbooksummit.com.

11) What advice would you give to someone starting out?

Don’t be afraid to start out slowly. Build a good writing habit—even if it is just for 5 minutes a day. Over time you’ll build momentum and see serious results!

Thank you for a wonderful interview, Jim.

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Jim Woods is a freelance writer, author, author assistant, and writing coach that loves to help others tell better stories. You can connect with him at jimwoodswrites.com.

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Wrestling With The In-Between

I am reading this book which is really provoking me. I’m sure you all heard me speak of Jeff Goins. Well, I am reading an advanced copy of his new book called, The In-Between, which is coming out on August 1st.

I just started reading it and can’t put it down. I absolutely love the way Jeff Goins writes. He is never boring. He also exudes wisdom in his writing. He’s an old soul. I also find myself relating to much of what he writes. I’m not going to give it all away because I want you to read and experience it for yourself. I will also be posting a review when I am done.

He is really making me think. The kind of deep, looking at yourself kind of thinking. I find myself stopping, remembering, and making connections in my own life. This is the reason why I follow his blog because not only is it good writing, but he really makes you think and gives you meat to chew on. I aspire to write like him.

I know, I know, I am not really comparing myself to him although I can’t help but admit I truly wish I can write like he does. But then, I wouldn’t be myself, right?

I go through a liturgy within myself of all the reasons why no one would like my writing. Why would anyone bother reading what I write? There are people like Jeff Goins, Chris Brogan, Seth Godin, Steven Pressfield, and Andi Cumbo. I mean, who in the world wants to read what I have to say?

Which is why I totally feel dejected and rejected when someone unfollows or unfriends me. I get repulsed with myself in the sense that I’m being totally self-absorbed and pathetic.

Why do I want to matter so much? Why do I want everyone in the world to like and accept me? What is this thing inside of me that wants me to be like everyone else instead of being myself, being happy with myself and that being good enough?

I mean, for goodness sake, I’m going to be 47 years old. You would think I would grow up already and display some sort of maturity here? I feel like I’m still stuck in high school, trying to be accepted by my peers. To be in the “in” group and part of the cool clique. I believe this may even be called narcissism.

I wrestle within myself; one part of me says, Who cares what people think about you, your writing, or what you have to say? The next minute I’m licking my wounds from someone unfollowing me because they didn’t like what I had to say.

Jeff Goins says, You don’t write for other people; you write for yourself. You don’t write for accolades; you write because you have to. You see? He’s so smart.

In his book, The In-Between, he discusses writing as a calling. I’m trying to figure out if writing is my calling or not. With so many talented writers out there, where do I fit in?

I don’t have the answer, but despite the resistance to write and publish, I will continue… as hard as it is for me… I will try to be brave and courageous as those I mentioned above and not give up.

What about you? Do you go through this as a writer? How do you battle the resistance and the incessant negative voices?

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Resistance: The Writer And The Struggle

I am a contributing writer for Godly Writers and today I write about the struggle for every writer… Resistance.

I struggle with the voices which tell me I’m not a writer and that I shouldn’t bother.

I have been especially thinking about resistance after reading two of Stephen Pressfield’s books; The War of Art and Do The Work.

To read more, please visit Godly Writers.

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