Because of the response to Monday’s posting of Major Jim Gant’s paper One Tribe At A Time, I’d like to keep the post “above the fold” all week, and run a shorter “Writing Wednesdays” post this week. The focus? Resistance and Major Gant.


Major Gant has a wife and kids; he’s training now for a year-long deployment to Iraq; and has the everyday things we all share on his plate. Yet, he still completed his 45-paper within the timeline he and I discussed. No one asked him to write the paper. There was no deadline from a boss. He started writing it, we discussed posting it on my site and set a date, and he delivered it on time. 


Resistance, it seems, melts away in the face of conviction, passion and hard work.


Steve shows you the predictable Resistance points that every writer hits in a work-in-progress and then shows you how to deal with each one of these sticking points. This book shows you how to keep going with your work.

do the work book banner 1


A short book about the writing of a first novel: for Steve, The Legend of Bagger Vance. Having failed with three earlier attempts at novels, here's how Steve finally succeeded.



Steve shares his "lessons learned" from the trenches of the five different writing careers—advertising, screenwriting, fiction, nonfiction, and self-help. This is tradecraft. An MFA in Writing in 197 pages.



Amateurs have amateur habits. Pros have pro habits. When we turn pro, we give up the comfortable life but we find our power. Steve answers the question, "How do we overcome Resistance?"



  1. […] discussion on Jim Gant’s Tribal Engagement Team strategy continues on Steven Pressfield’s blog. I like his  ”>comemnt today regarding the way that Jim Gant has produced this […]

  2. […] Writing Wednesdays # 13: Major Jim Gant Resistance, it seems, melts away in the face of conviction, passion and hard work. via […]

  3. SJPONeill on October 28, 2009 at 4:15 pm

    On Resistance and MAJ Gant…’someone else’ is NOT going to do it and MAJ Gant’s example behoves a few more of us to get up, join the information militia and produce our own papers on those topics we are passionate about…

  4. George Seward on February 1, 2010 at 11:19 am

    I spent several years in the highlands of Vietnam with SOG and alongside the Special Forces so Major Gants observations remind me of another era. I am also reminded me of the last words of the movie Charlie Wilson’s war regarding “we fucked up the end game”. The North Vietnamese had the time, and we had the watches also so maybe this comes down to the cultural differences between Americans who are obsessively watching their cellphone or ipod vs. people who see the conflict as unfortunately the only way or life that they have known.
    Just an old man musing
    P.S. Do you know of anyway if it would be possible to get a picture of Jim Gant and his team. They look so much the way we did 40 some years ago

  5. Matt Peterson on February 2, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    I had the privilege of hearing you (Mr. Pressfield) along with Major Gant and Chief Ajmal speak today. Since I will soon be heading to Afghanistan, the information and perspective shared by the three of you was timely as well as compelling. Following the discussion, I spoke briefly to Major Gant who requested I send him an e-mail. I expected to find his e-mail address on this page, but now realize I should have asked him for it. As one of the future “battle space owners” referenced in your discussion today, I would appreciate (and I think my team would benefit) from some more of Major Gant’s insights and specific recommendations. If you could send him my e-mail address along with a request to send me a comm check, I would be very grateful. Thank you for what you do.


    • Steven Pressfield on February 3, 2010 at 8:07 am

      Pete, what’s your e-mail address? If you leave it here in the Comments section, I’ll be glad to pass it Maj. Gant. Actually we’ll both by at the Gray Center (with Chief Zazai) on Monday for the SWJ Tribal Engagement Workshop. But send me your address and I’ll give it to Maj. Gant.


  6. Tony Kerch on February 3, 2010 at 9:29 am

    I too attended yesterdays lecture and am glad there is someone else with my train of thought. Having spent 2 years as an Advisor (Saudi Arabia and Iraq), the things that seem so clear to us on the ground embedded with our forces doesn’t seem to transcend or get across to HHQ. No matter how many storyboards and daily SitReps you send up, they seem to get molded into what wants to be said rather than what needs to be said. Many Advisors coming off operational tours (out of our normal MOSs) are put back into the fleet without having the oppurtunity to pass along the knowledge to future forces. I am glad there is a plan (or at least warm jello) with the AF/PAK Hands program to allow the teacher/student atmosphere to continue upon return to CONUS. Great speach by all yesterday and I hope those who need to listen, will! Stay safe.
    Tony Kerch

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