Save 50% when you …

I know I promised last week to continue our examination of Michael Shaara’s Killer Angels, but instead I must interrupt this message with a word from our sponsor …

A couple of books are missing from this pic, but you get the idea …

Are you aware of www.blackirishbooks.com? It’s the online bookstore for The War of Art, Turning Pro, etc.

I mention this as Christmas approaches because you can get the “author’s discount” of 50% on any order of ten books or more.

What made me think of this was yesterday I was signing an order of 40 War of Arts for Bo Eason, who’s a friend and a coach who runs mastermind groups. Bo regularly gives out signed copies of The War of Art to his mastermind clients. Because he lives in the next town, he just orders the books in bulk, I sign them, then he picks them up in person.

But we can do this via mail or UPS/Fedex too.

This offer applies to any book of mine that Black Irish publishes—The War of Art, Turning Pro, The Warrior Ethos, Do the Work, Nobody Wants to Read Your Sh*t, The Artist’s Journey, the Authentic Swing, or The Knowledge.

If you’d like me to sign copies, write me at [email protected] and we’ll figure out shipping and make a plan. 

Or if you’d just like the books at a 50% discount, simply place your order on www.blackirishbooks.com.

The 50% discount is automatically applied on all orders over ten copies. 

Sorry, you can’t “mix and match.” 

DO THE 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

THE AUTHENTIC SWING

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.

The-Authentic-Swing

NOBODY WANTS TO READ YOUR SH*T

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.

noboybookcover

TURNING PRO

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?"

Turning-Pro

A Man At Arms is
on sale now!

Don't miss out on exclusive bonuses available to early buyers!

32 Comments

  1. Janet Kelly on December 15, 2021 at 3:48 am

    I loved to read these books and I really tell people to read these books when they have time.

  2. Kate Stanton on December 15, 2021 at 7:13 am

    My sister gave me a copy of The War of Art back in 2015 when I was feeling lost about my purpose. I have since “paid it forward” to countless friends that I think also needed to read it. My favorite part is “Creative work is not a selfish act or a bid for attention on the part of the actor.”

    Give us what you’ve got!! Happy Holidays to all here <3

  3. Don Bonin on December 15, 2021 at 7:20 am

    These are all great, incredibly useful books. Highly recommended, especially to writers honing their craft.

  4. Fernando Del Valle on December 15, 2021 at 8:13 am

    There’s two books that I always have several copies to gift, Meditations and the War of Art. It is one of the most important books for anyone, creative or not. Thank you Steven!

  5. Bing on December 15, 2021 at 8:25 am

    All of Steve’s books are awesome. Steve is awesome.
    I have read the War of Art many times over.
    Thanks Steve for being who you are.

  6. Maureen Anderson on December 15, 2021 at 8:54 am

    It’s so great to have a gift you know will delight — and The War of Art is IT.

  7. Joe on December 15, 2021 at 9:10 am

    Just sent a copy of “The Afghan Campaign“ to an artist friend of mine who is also a Vietnam vet.

    • Kate Stanton on December 15, 2021 at 10:07 am

      Thank you (and your friend) for your service, Joe!!

      • Joe on December 16, 2021 at 2:42 am

        It was a privilege, Kate.

  8. Jackie on December 15, 2021 at 12:50 pm

    I own copies of the mentioned books and recommend The War of Art to anyone who truly wants to live their life.

  9. Maureen Anderson on December 15, 2021 at 1:07 pm

    This might be impossibly corny, but in the spirit of the season — and to thank Steve for the inspiration all year — would people in this community like to join me in sharing their most cherished words of advice from him?

    Here are mine…

    “Start before you’re ready. Write what you don’t know. Pick the idea that’s craziest. Write the book you can’t write.”

    I can’t linger on those words very long without tearing up. Steve reminded me I know what I’m meant to do with my life, but I haven’t started because I’m afraid. To be continued. Promise!

    • Kate Stanton on December 15, 2021 at 1:22 pm

      I don’t think it is corny in the least; it is lovely. Great idea, Maureen!

      Resistance hits me the hardest when it’s time to share my work. I have this mean ugly inner voice that says (screams) NO ONE WANTS TO READ (OR LISTEN TO) YOUR SH*T. Who do you think you are sharing your music? What a narcissistic self-absorbed person you must be to think anyone would want to spend time hearing this? It’s abusive.

      The last page of The War of Art actually changed my trajectory with making music. I was no longer making it for others in mind. I make what is authentic to my journey. I feel in my bones that it is what I was meant to do. The line “Creative work is not a selfish act or a bid for attention on the part of the actor” makes me feel less sleazy about sharing it.

      I enjoy reading the comments here just as much as getting Steve’s wisdom each week.

      • Maureen Anderson on December 15, 2021 at 1:33 pm

        So interesting, Kate! And as usual, already, a gift supposedly for someone else doubles back on the giver. 🙂

    • Sam Luna on December 15, 2021 at 2:34 pm

      Hi Maureen, great idea. My pick:

      “Put your faith in the Source, the Mystery, the Quantum Soup. The deeper the source we work from, the better our stuff will be–and the more transformative it will be for us and those we share it with.”

      Those sentences are tattooed on my brain.

      Thanks to you and Joe, Peter, Brian, Kate, Tolis and all the others who take a few minutes to visit here each week. I always look forward to what you have to say.

    • Brian Nelson on December 15, 2021 at 3:18 pm

      Maureen,
      So many from which to choose! Here are two from Gates of Fire, the second of which propelled me to email Steve directly back in 2011-ish.

      The best description of leadership ever put into print (IMHO),
      “A king does not abide within his tent while his men bleed and die upon the field. A king does not dine while his men go hungry, nor sleep when they stand at watch upon the wall. A king does not command his men’s loyalty through fear nor purchase it with gold; he earns their love by the sweat of his own back and the pains he endures for their sake. That which comprises the harshest burden, a king lifts first and sets down last. A king does not require service of those he leads but provides it to them…A king does not expend his substance to enslave men, but by his conduct and example makes them free.”

      Then, from where does a warrior/society find its strength? I read this shortly after my own journey overseas. It was rough–but I was surrounded by my besties, doing a job we had trained to do. In many ways, it was professional Nirvana. But where did I find strength? Steve answers this in King Leonidas’s words, “I chose them not for their own valor, lady, but for that of their women. Greece stands now upon her most perilous hour. If she saves herself, it will not be at Thermopylae … death alone awaits us and our allies there … but later, in battles yet to come, on land and sea. Then Greece, if the gods will it, shall preserve herself. Do you understand this, my lady? Now listen.

      “When the battle is over, when the Three Hundred have gone down to death, then will all Greece look to the Spartans to see how they bear this loss.

      “But who, lady, will the Spartans look to? They will look to you. To you and the other wives and mothers, sisters and daughters of the fallen.

      “If they behold your hearts riven and broken with grief, they too will break. And Greece will break with them. But if you bear up, dry-eyed, not alone enduring your loss but seizing it with contempt for its agony and embracing it as the honor that it is in truth, then Sparta will stand. And all Greece will stand behind her.

      “Why have I nominated you, lady, to bear up beneath this most terrible of trials, you and your sisters of the Three Hundred? Because you can.”

      When Ruth finally speaks in “A Man at Arms”–well, I immediately burst into tears.

      It is a rare, rare writer who can deliver the same powerful impact through fiction and non-fiction. Love it. It nourishes me.

      Thanks to everyone on this blog as well–as Sam so kindly said.
      bsn

      • Maureen Anderson on December 15, 2021 at 4:00 pm

        Wow, Brian. Thank you so much for sharing this!

      • Peter Brockwell on December 22, 2021 at 1:21 am

        What a wonderful character in Arete. And Dienikes, both. Inspirational.

    • Joe on December 17, 2021 at 2:16 am

      Maureen: on the theme of “Start before you’re ready.” We went to one of those “Immersive van Gogh” exhibitions a couple months ago. As much as the art being projected on the walls and floors, I was taken by the wall projections of quotes from van Gogh’s letters to his brother Theo and to other artists. I liked this one in particular:

      “I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it.”

      • Maureen Anderson on December 17, 2021 at 8:23 am

        Until I read your comment, Joe, I hadn’t realized something. “Start before your ready” is great advice because you’ll never be ready.

        • Maureen Anderson on December 17, 2021 at 4:12 pm

          Start before “you’re” ready!

          Ugh.

          Guess I wasn’t ready to post!

  10. Paullette MacDougal on December 15, 2021 at 1:35 pm

    I have just finished reading Steve Pressfield’s A MAN AT ARMS. From Telamon’s initial mercenary beliefs to Warrior Ethos to Unattachment (in the yoga sense) to Agape (of the Greek definition) to – I don’t want to give away the ending. What a journey!
    It touched me in a deep place. I would recommend this masterpiece to anyone.

  11. Brian Nelson on December 15, 2021 at 2:56 pm

    As a child and a young man my most gifted book was “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” by Richard Bach. I read most of his works during the tumultuous age we name adolescence. Something about Bach’s writing spoke deeply me to me.

    A War of Art is now my default gift book, or book suggestion to any and all. So much in both books–but what I think I find rewarding in each book is that they both describe how an individual can wrestle control, or at least a modicum of control, amidst the chaos of life.

    It might be a thinly veiled optimism that I find so nourishing in all of Pressfield’s writings. There is always a battle, inner or external, and yet the recipe to become an honorable warrior is the same.

    These are life-changing gifts.
    bsn

    • Joe on December 17, 2021 at 4:26 am

      bsn… I was also drawn to Richard Bach’s writings as a young reader. “Jonathan,” “Illusions,” “One,” among others. A friend of mine lent me a set of cassette tapes (it’s been that long) of a talk that Bach had given. I think it might have been in the San Francisco area, maybe in the late 80s or early 90s. I listened to those things over and over, until I handed them back to my friend with the tape nearly worn out. Listening to him talking about “the dragon” that roars when you say you want to write, saying, “Others may, but not YOUUUUU!” Recognizing it now as another articulation of “Resistance” with a capital R. He talked about Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ and their work on “remote viewing” at Stanford Research Institute, and being fascinated. Listening to him talk about how “nobody in the world can write like you write when you’re being yourself” (another articulation of “the authentic swing”).

      Then he started writing about ferrets and I kind of moved on. But I appreciated the imaginative thought in those earlier novels.

      I’m thinking of a particular story in the novel “One” — a novel where Richard and Leslie find themselves in the space between multiverses, flying over a shallow sea with the lines of apparently sandbars snaking and coming together and branching; wherever they land their seaplane, they open their eyes into some parallel version of their lives. They maybe grunting protohumans from a half-million years ago, or in some world millions of years in the future where bodies have become superfluous and they exist, Richard and Leslie, as a single, fused spirit-being).

      In this one chapter, they fall into a parallel world where nations have realized the ignorance and waste of armed combat, and have turned military operations into competitions akin to a beefed-up version of paint ball or laser tag. Aerial dogfights taking place in televised NASCAR-like competition, narrated by the parallel-universe equivalent of a Jim McKay or a Howard Cosell.

      “It’s a sport here?” I asked. “You’ve turned air combat into a motor-sport?”

      https://archive.org/details/onenovel00bach/page/144/mode/2up

      Anyhow, Richard Bach…

      • Peter Brockwell on December 22, 2021 at 1:24 am

        Oh yes, Richard Bach! Wonderful. A Messiah’s Handbook, which reveals more to me each time I read it. And A Gift of Wings is such a joyful celebration of being.

        When I’ve sent him books requesting he sign them, he always draws some beautiful simple sketch on the endpapers. Often swooping seagulls.

        Ahhh…

  12. Jurgen Strack on December 16, 2021 at 6:07 am

    In line with Maureen’s great suggestion, it’s

    ‘keep writing’ (keep doing your chosen pursuit/s) and you will get better.

    A budding writer and stand-up comic, I love reading this blog – it gets me out of the wilderness and back on track.

    Frohe Weihnachten.

    Jurgen

    • Maureen Anderson on December 16, 2021 at 6:48 am

      This reminds me of another favorite gem, Jurgen. Something like, “We don’t write to express ourselves. We write to discover ourselves.”

  13. Carter on December 17, 2021 at 10:18 pm

    Until I read your comment, Joe, I hadn’t realized something. “Start before your ready” is great advice because you’ll never be ready.

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  14. snow rider 3d on December 21, 2021 at 11:36 pm

    This reminds me of another favorite gem, Jurgen. Something like, “We don’t write to express ourselves. We write to discover ourselves.”

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