Yes, the Money Rocks!

We've spent the entire week talking about the perks of the writer’s life. The glicken. The good stuff. The intangibles.

Freedom, prestige, and opportunity all make my list, possibly even in that order. But as Cuba Gooding, Jr. said to Tom Cruise in Jerry Maguire:

"Show me the money!"

I love the writer’s life, but if it didn't include making really good money, I'd be out of here.

I have a very strong aversion to mediocrity. Average is not on my radar.

It has little to do with accumulating material wealth, although I like having nice things.

It's about experiencing life to its fullest. Becoming the absolutely best person I can be. Giving my four kids every opportunity in life that I can, opportunities I didn't have growing up. Providing my wife with a lifestyle she deserves.

You can make good money in a lot of careers, but sometimes at the expense of other things. What's the point of making $200,000 a year if you only get 3-4 weeks off every year to enjoy it? (I'm not implying I'm at that level yet. But I fully intend to be within a year or two, and I'm well on my way.)

Let me share a personal story that might illustrate my motivations better.

Like a lot of guys, I married over my head. My wife is better looking and smarter than I am, she gets way more done in less time than I do, and she juggles running a business with taking care of me and four kids and everything inside and outside of our home.

I'm blessed beyond measure.

In 1998, her father passed away and she went back home to Nigeria for his funeral.

That was the last time she visited her mother and seven brothers and sisters until 2009. Eleven years.

Eleven years of patiently waiting, because at any given time, I either didn't have the money or the vacation time to take off on a major trip.

I felt like a failure.

This was really burning me up inside.

I knew that somehow, some way, I had to change course in my life. Whatever it took, I was going to structure my life to not only make money, but be in control of my destiny.

It took a few years of planning, and toiling at this art of copywriting while I worked 55-hour weeks at my job, but it finally happened.

On December 19, 2009, my wife and kids and I showed up at the front door of my 78-year-old mother-in-law's house, half a world away. As long as I live, I'll never forget her joy at that moment.

Six days later, it hit me. This was the writer's life, and this was the best Christmas ever.

That's why I do what I do.

Can I ask you? What burns you up inside? When you're all by yourself and you think about things you really want in life, what pulls at your heart strings? What makes your lower lip quiver and your eyes tear up? Share with me in the comments.

If elements of the writer’s life would help you get those things … if you have a strong desire to live an extraordinary life … if the idea of connecting with people on a deeper level appeals to you by learning how to carefully craft your ideas … then I would strongly encourage you to throw yourself headlong into this unique and expanding opportunity.

And I hope somehow, someday, you have your own personal December 19th moment.

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Published: April 22, 2011

27 Responses to “Yes, the Money Rocks!”

  1. Fear of the endless monotony of always hoping,dreaming and yes even living the endless expectations of a freedom that never really comes.

    To think of following the rest of the androids in this robotic world in which we live. Not I, is what I say to myself day in and day out.

    That one single breath of freedom means life that is contagious to others once they too embrace it.

    There is no box in which we live,only doors in which to open.

    I choose life

    kahedi4April 22, 2011 at 10:33 am

  2. Hi Steve:
    I can relate to your teling and inspirational story and I will be hot on your tail. I have practiced law for many years and I have enjoyed my practice. However, a litigators life is not one's own. It is time for a change and freedom.
    I love writing and I have just finished the final review of a fiction book that I was writing that has been three years in the making. Now to get it published while I concentrate on this course.
    Thanks, it was a good pick-me-up for this AM Jorge

    JorgeApril 22, 2011 at 10:42 am

  3. Starting to achieve some financial independence but unfortunately it's come too later for me to help fulfill my wife's dream of staying home w/ the kids during their infant/toddler years. Seems like all that effort was a bit wasted now but I'm sure there is a reason for the ironically poor timing :(

    Guest (Matt)April 22, 2011 at 12:22 pm

  4. Hi Steve,

    Thanks for the letter of inspiration. I started the accelerated writing program the 1st of the year.

    Our son was diagnosed with cancer on Jan 15th, so we have been preoccupied with that.

    But, letters like yours and the other ones that AWAI publish keep me motivated to restart the program soon.

    So, I want to thank again...and please keep us informed!

    Don Kowalski

    Don KowalskiApril 22, 2011 at 12:39 pm

  5. Matt, It's never over until YOU say it's over. It's in the mindset that you choose to have. If you think it's over then it's over,if you think you can then you will.

    Read up on Coronal Sanders you will see age has no limits.

    Your mind is the only thing that brings age to you. Nothing else. Faith is the only thing that brings what you wish to accomplish forward.

    You are where your supposed to be at this moment. It is perfect, now just have faith to receive it.

    Claim what's yours!

    kahedi4April 22, 2011 at 2:04 pm

  6. Steve, what a great story! Travel was my big motivator, and the flexibility to be there for important family holidays and events. I've got a version of the writer's life now, just working on ticking the income up each year. Going to the October Bootcamp and really hope it generates the network and motivation to keep taking things to the next level.

    Jennifer AdamsApril 22, 2011 at 5:31 pm

  7. I would like to know how to get started on no money. Everyone talks about doing it, but no one gives specific suggestions about how to do it.

    I have no "extra" money to do anything, and I can't just "cut out" some extravagance to pay for whatever.

    So . . . how is it done, exactly? How exactly do you get clients and get started making money?

    I have lots of AWAI programs, so I'm already trained and ready to write. But after almost four years, I still don't know how to get a client.


    gluten-free gourmandApril 22, 2011 at 6:29 pm

  8. I have a two year old grandaughter who lives with her dad, who is my son. he is a single father who is struggling and I want the best for both of them. I'm all they have and I've made it my mission to become a freelance copywriter so I can give them the help they need to get the things in life they're not capable of getting right now. This motivates me to succeed at becoming a Christian Freelance Copywriter soon.

    David AdameApril 23, 2011 at 1:43 pm

  9. As I read your story, life, hope and fear all at once jumped into my consciousness. I want to live life, have hope and battle with that nasty nemesis of humanity - fear. I am retired from the military, love spirituality and health and although disabled, I still want to live from the depth of my being. To communicate, to love is why we live. I hope, I pray, that as I get my life together, AWAI may provide a way to make my dreams come true...

    Guest (Craig)April 23, 2011 at 4:02 pm

  10. It tears me apart to know that my wife worries about our future, especially our financial future. I feel like I have not done enough, even though I've always done the best I could. We are not so young any more, and I am constantly searching for the confidence to finish the Six-Figure copywriting course and pursue freelance copywriting to provide a better life for both of us in the future. Thanks for the inspirational words.

    Guest (Jim)April 23, 2011 at 5:56 pm

  11. Steve, I've enjoyed your week at the helm.
    If I had my druthers, I would be homesteading in a timberframe house on a small farm on a mountain lake. That's what sets my heart a-flutter.
    My first six-figure year, I'll be out there looking for it.

    Guest (Jean)April 24, 2011 at 6:01 pm

  12. Steve. You know, I can read all of the how to stuff that everybody tosses out there and it seldom motivates or inspires me. Like many, I have a big "why" for wanting to live the writer's life. My folks are both getting up in age and in the late autumn of their life, they have occassionally commented to me that they sometimes feel all alone in the town where they live. My brother passed away last year and he was talking to my mother almost daily when he waas close to home. I hate the fact they feel alone so the writer's life to me means being able to drive the 6 hours necessary to see them whenever I feel like it, instead of once or twice a year, like my boss says. Thanks for the inspiration.

    PaulHughesApril 25, 2011 at 2:19 pm

  13. Wow, tears in my eyes when I put myself into your mother-in-law's shoes. I was born in Finland, came to Canada when I was 6, have visited my family in Finland a few times but not for over 20 years now and I would dearly love to see my favourite uncle while he is still alive. Need to get serious, thanks for the motivation.

    HelenaMay 4, 2011 at 11:24 pm

  14. Steve:

    Thank you for sharing this article.

    You wear your heart on your sleeve, and that is something we cherish in a writer.

    You are not afraid to put yourself out there: the trials and tribulations you have endured, the highs and lows you have experienced.

    In the end, I think this has made you a better and stronger person.

    I also felt happy for you when you could finally quite your day job to pursue a freelance copywriting career.

    It is not enough just to earn a living.

    Archan MehtaMay 17, 2011 at 2:02 am

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