This Week and Next

Thus endeth our series, The Warrior Ethos. To read the full book for free, click here. A “lightbox” will open. For those (like me) who are not 100% hip to lightboxes, they’re like e-books except you don’t need a Kindle or an iPad; you can read them on your regular laptop or desktop.


Read the full text free in "lightbox" format

Once you’re in the lightbox, open the window wide till you see PREVIOUS | NEXT in the lower left hand corner; then just “turn the pages.” Clicking on a page also turns it. There’s a CLOSE button in the lower right when you want to quit.

The Warrior Ethos is also available on as a paperback and a Kindle e-book. We’ll have an audio version soon.

Now: next week.

The response has been so enthusiastic to these Monday posts that I didn’t want to shut that day down. So next week we’ll inaugurate a different-but-related series.

We’re calling it War Stories until we come up with a better name. What it’ll be is a “greatest hits” sampling from the hundreds of obscure (and not so obscure) books that I’ve been pouring into my brain for the past thirty or more years.

I’ll be your guide. We’ll go deep into the vault and bring back stuff that’s rich in wisdom, lore and B-vitamins.

Just how deep and obscure will that get?

We’ll start next week with the love story of Panthea and Abrocomas from Xenophon’s The Education of Cyrus. Is that arcane enough? Bring a handkerchief, trust me. If you’re not in tears by the end, you have no heart.

I plan to feature stuff from Hemingway to Homer, from von Manstein to Moshe Dayan. Posts will come from movies and plays, myths and legends, from journalism and personal correspondence and combat reports. Not all of it will be “war stuff.” But it will all deal with issues of honor and virtue and courage in the face of adversity. A lot of it will be real literature. All of it will be inspiring.

I also want to invite everyone to chip in with their own stories. Write me at [email protected]. Suggest passages–1000 words or less–from favorite books. Or send in something you’ve written yourself. Tell us about a patrol in Kunar province, or a letter your Dad sent to you from Pleiku in 1969. If it’s great, we’ll run it.

Thanks to all who have followed The Warrior Ethos from the start. I hope this new series will maintain the momentum and even take it a little further.


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


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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. Jason Fountain on May 16, 2011 at 4:08 am

    Thanks for the inspiring articles. Can’t believe I just found your post a couple of months ago.

    I continue to be inspired by “Do the Work” and “The War of Art.” You are helping me develop a much deeper understanding of “resistance” in all of its shapes and forms.

  2. David Strom on May 16, 2011 at 6:37 am

    Steve – this is very cool. I’m really looking forward to the Monday series!


  3. David Smith on May 16, 2011 at 7:02 am

    Thanks for making this available online. I’m a lot like you in that I’m not “100% hip” on lightboxes. When I Alt-+ to make the text large enough to read, the controls scroll off the screen. Are there instructions somewhere that would make this usable, or am I being too demanding?

  4. David Smith on May 16, 2011 at 7:07 am

    Immediately I posted the above comment, I received an email from you asking me to confirm my subscription request. Since I explicitly chose to not check the “Check here to sign up…” this might be a bug that you should know about. I’ve chosen to follow you by subscribing to your RSS feed, so I really don’t want more emails.


    • Steven Pressfield on May 16, 2011 at 1:50 pm

      My apologies, David. I will get our crack tech staff (i.e. Jeff Simon) on this ASAP. Thanks for letting me know!

      • David Smith on May 17, 2011 at 8:39 am

        Steve –

        Jeff got back to me right away – thanks!

  5. Tanner Christensen on May 16, 2011 at 7:43 am

    Oh this looks like it will be fun.

    I can’t wait to see what the next few weeks hold for the Monday series post, as well as the valuable input provided from my fellow readers.

  6. Rod Roth on May 16, 2011 at 11:34 am

    Steve, Please include the story of Gunny Hatchcock’s stalking of the Vietnamese general. Gotta get my copy of Marine Sniper back and read it again, myself. This is just one hell of a fine series you’ve got going here-thanks!

    • Steven Pressfield on May 16, 2011 at 1:52 pm

      Rod, can you send the story in? Or let me know where to find it? I haven’t heard of it but it sounds great.

      • Steven Pressfield on May 16, 2011 at 1:53 pm

        You guys, I must apologize for a misremembering vis-a-vis next week’s post. It isn’t Panthea and Abrocomas but Panthea and Abradatas. Also, I might have to save that for later as I just looked it up and it’s a lot longer than I remember. We’ll come up with something good to hold a place for it, I promise.

      • Rod Roth on May 17, 2011 at 5:42 am

        Steve, It’s the key story in Marine Sniper. Gunny Hatchcock had 93 confirmed kills in Viet Nam, along with reinvigorating the sniper MOS in the Corps. Soon as I get my copy back, I’ll get the page numbers to you, but I highly recommend the book.

  7. Captain Michael Phipps (Ret) on June 23, 2018 at 6:11 pm

    Steven…I spent 33 years in the US Army and Army National Guard as an Infantry Officer and NCO. I served three combat tours in Iraq and was shot twice in the same firefight on 6 May, 2007 by a 7.62 PKS MG. I also spent seven years as a Baltimore County, Md Police Officer. And except for Marcus Aurelius and James Webb your books have been my biggest inspiration to write about my experiences which I am presently doing (although I have published 10 non-fiction books and articles about military history and spent 20 years at the Gettysburg National Military Park as a battlefield guide). I just wanted to say Thank You as a Warrior.

  8. dinotube on November 22, 2019 at 1:05 am

    Steven: Well that s very much to the point Robert, I m sure that I am missing out on a lot. If I had some wise business manager they would probably kick me in the ass, you know. I ve made that decision that that s not important to me. What s important to me, just like we were talking about before, about Krishna and Arjuna, what s important to me is the work that I am trying to do and getting to the next level. So I am glad to do some of this kind of stuff but it s not my day job.

  9. JamesHarper on February 28, 2023 at 2:25 am

    When you’re a light-skinned dog and your owner forgets to put sunscreen on you at the beach: “My skin may be fair, but my burn is real.

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