At the beginning of this year, I hinted at taking some risks in 2010 — at leaving my comfort zone. Today I want to tell you a little more, and ask for your patience and support.
For 2010, there are three big projects I want to do. And while it’s probably unwise for me to announce something before I have anything to reveal, well…wisdom’s never been my thing. So:
Project 1: Fight Cancer More Personally
I of course plan to ramp up Team Fatty for another big year with the LiveStrong Challenge, but I’ve been thinking a lot about what I’ve learned from Susan’s battle with cancer, and how others who have been caretakers similarly learn a lot during these fights. This post from back in September got me to thinking: I would love to collect stories and tips from other caretakers in some kind of online forum, interview people in greater depth, and then publish what I’ve learned.
A “Caretaker’s Companion,” essentially.
I probably sound like I’ve got a delusions of grandeur problem when I say this (although not only when I say this), but I think this is the best idea I have ever had. Something that could really help the people who take it upon themselves to walk the path of cancer treatment with a loved one.
And it is something I really know and understand.
Project 2: Write Something Big and Fun
I’ve mentioned before that I wanted to write a book. What I didn’t mention is that I actually finished a proposal, shopped it around, and got no takers. And looking back now, I think everyone was right to not take that proposal. It was about too many things and had no arc to it.
So I’m working on another proposal now. It doesn’t have the failings of the previous proposal. It’s about one thing, and the very premise promises a big arc. Also, it’s something I think a lot of people will enjoy reading, and I know it’s something I can make into a very fun — yet, amazingly, informative — book.
There are a couple of big issues with this proposal, though:
- If the proposal is accepted, writing the book won’t be easy. Because the research — yes, research! — and preparation for it will consume my life. And then there’s the writing.
- Even getting the proposal finished is turning out to be a lot of work. Which is where my first request for support comes in. I want to get this proposal done, which means I need to write a sample chapter that goes with it. Which means I need to spend time with it. And I don’t have a huge amount of time. The obvious answer is for me to, for a couple weeks, blog a little less so I have more time to finish this proposal. Essentially, I think I’ll post on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday each week, giving me four days each week to use the time I’d usually work on the blog to work on the proposal instead. So I’m asking for your patience while I do that.
I know, I know: I haven’t said a word here about what this proposal’s actually about. And I can’t, at least not yet. I can tell you, however, that it’s the kind of book you’d expect from me, and the kind of book I’ll enjoy writing.
Project 3: A Best of Fat Cyclist Book
In a few months, I will have been writing this blog for five years. I think, during that time, I’ve written probably close to 2500 pages. Out of that, there’s probably enough good material to make a 250-page book. What I’m thinking of doing is the following:
- Organize my favorite posts by topic (How-To, Fake News, Epic Rides, Fighting Cancer, for example)
- Introduce and annotate each post, giving background on where different posts came from, additional thoughts and nonsense that didn’t make the cut when I wrote the post, and stuff like that.
- Include favorite comments for each post.
- Self-publish the book, making it available on a pre-order basis.
I kinda have my fingers crossed that this book will be what makes it financially possible for me to work on the other two projects. Which may be wildly optimistic and naive of me, but “optimistic and naive” has worked pretty well as a life philosophy for me so far.
Other Things Are Afoot
When I wrote my New Year’s post and said it felt like a year to take risks, I meant it. However, I expected to take those risks while still trying to keep the status quo intact.
Non-risky risks, if you get my point.
Since then, my status quo has been shaken in a couple of big ways. I won’t go into either right now, but I will tell you that one is public knowledge if you know where to look, and the other wouldn’t be a very difficult guess to make.
So status quo is out the door. In a lot of ways. And I’m looking forward to doing some things I’ve wanted to do my whole life.
In short, 2009 sort of grabbed me by the throat and took me for a ride. With any luck, I’ll repay the favor with 2010.
As you might expect, I’ll write about here as I go through it. In excruciating detail, and with excessive use of em-dashes and parenthetical comments.
PS: Does it sound like I’m having a midlife crisis or what?