By the way, if you’re traveling through an airport, it’s now a Hudson Booksellers Best Seller!
I’ve also had a couple of chances to talk about my fiction work. Most enjoyably, an old colleague from my stand-up days, Keith Tomasek, has a terrific podcast about the arts and the creative process, The Inadequate Life.Recently, we talked for an hour about my stand-up days and the transition to being a grownup, as well as the ins and outs of publishing. It was a blast. If you’d like to hear it, it’s here. I think it’s the most wide-ranging and probably most honest interview I’ve ever done. And for a media ho like me, that’s saying something.
I got into corporate training because when I left stand-up, I had a 15-year hole in my resume and only one marketable skill; I could stand there and talk.
To Keith Tomasek, The Inadequate Life podcast
“I like to tell people I’m the love child of Alexandre Dumas and Hunter S Thompson and let them figure it out.”
When asked by James Quinland Mervey what my influences are….
Take a look at this picture. None of it is doctored:
All my life I’ve dreamed of traveling to exotic places, seeing the world, and speaking about my passion; helping people communicate more effectively and making work suck less. This is a moment few people will ever experience (or even believe me when I tell them about it.)
I was miles from home and civilization, speaking at the Remote Work Summit, overlooking the jungle and talking about The Long-Distance Leader. Yes, the attendance was less than expected and disappointing, and yes, I was staying in a place with no air conditioning, a bathroom down the trail that I shared with 5 other cabins (and a passive-aggressive scorpion,) it was the rainy season, and when I wasn’t walking through the rain to the banos, my roof leaked. Travel logistics were a nightmare, but I got to see sights like this:
Because of my schedule, I couldn’t stay for the whole conference so I was up at 4:30 Saturday morning for a sometimes-terrifying 6-hour journey to the airport. Passing back through Antigua, I saw Monte Fuego at the end of an alley and took this picture:
Sunday afternoon, my phone blew up with messages, asking if I was safe. Turns out that lovely mountain now looked like this:
Basically the paradoxes of life were encapsulated in this trip:
I got to travel to an exotic place to speak about my work and met some amazing people, but it wasn’t the financial success I had hoped for. The story of my life.
It was a frustrating, crazy trip with a lot to whine about, but I saw and experienced things I would never have seen otherwise, and despite the mental and physical exhaustion, I’m grateful to have gone. Also a recurring theme.
I was bitching about some of the logistics and accommodations, and having to be up at 430 in the morning, and leaving the conference early. Yet I got out before a horrible disaster that has left dozens dead and many people unable to get home. I am one lucky sonofabitch.
Readers of this blog usually don’t care much about my day job, but I do. My latest book is “The Long-Distance Leader-Rules for Remarkable Remote Leadership.” It is the culmination of years of work and research that I, and my co-author Kevin Eikenberry, are very proud of.
Then you can order the darned thing. Publication date is officially June 5. If you like it, please leave a review and tell all your coworkers and peers. It’s available worldwide in paperback, Kindle and Audio book.
Anyone who knows me, knows I hate New Years Eve. Always have. The week between Christmas and New Years is traditionally a time of self-flagellating reflection, semi-soul-numbing-regrets and non-clinical depression. That generally comes complete with a lot of whining and binge-eating the remaining butter tarts. With the Duchess working retail, and my customers inconsiderately on vacation, I have too much time to think about stuff. Nothing good happens when Wayne starts a sentence with, “I’ve been thinking.”
This year is (slightly, ever-so-slightly) different.
By the way, this is not a request for “attaboy” Facebook messages or offers of assistance or your therapists’ contact information. I go through this every year and come out the other side. It’s just a way of setting up what I have to say next.
As I look forward to 2018, there are three things to look forward to.
In May, the release of “The Long-Distance Leader: Rules for Remarkable Remote Leadership.” Co-written with my boss and friend, Kevin Eikenberry, this is a very real book from a real publisher and the hope is that it will kick-start the whole “paying the rent” thing. It’s available for Pre-Order now. Just saying.
This summer will see the release of “Acre’s Orphans”, the second story in the Lucca series. I’m guessing August? I had hoped to have it out by now, but hubris is a terrible thing. “How hard could it be to do a world-class business book AND the next novel in the same year?” I can now answer that: way more than I thought. For those of you awaiting the next adventure. It’s coming. By the way, I killed off someone major in Chapter 15. Can’t wait to hear the complaining…..
After 17 years in Chicago, the Duchess and I are planning to leave Chicago for Las Vegas. Now, I’m well aware that if you want to hear God laugh, tell Her your plans, and nothing is set in stone. Still, that’s the plan. No more frigid winters (it’s -5 Fahrenheit this Boxing Day morning as Iwrite this. I think it was either Mark Twain or Simone de Beauvoir who famously said, “F#@*! this”.) And it’s time to start the next chapter of our lives. Of course, if anyone wants to buy a few copies of my books to help fund the move, we’d appreciate it. While I love Chicago, and Her Serene Highness will be staying behind, it’s either move or be murdered in my sleep by a woman raised in Miami and still pining for Los Angeles after all these years. I’m already packing boxes.
You never really know what a year holds, but I am excited for the challenges I know I (and we as a family) will face.
My own self-absorbed whinging aside, I wish for you an exciting 2018 of chasing your dreams and fighting the weasels to at least a draw.
Readers of this blog probably don’t think about my non-fiction work very much, but let’s face it–Lucca, Byron and their colleagues don’t pay the bills. My newest book, co-written with my boss, friend and colleague Kevin Eikenberry is now available for pre-orders.
Much as I’m trying to carve a niche for myself as a novelist, my first books–and the business that pays the bills–are non-fiction and center on business communication. That’s why I’m really proud to announce that (co-written with Kevin Eikenberry, peace be upon him) the new book is at the pubishers.
If you manage a remote team, or work in a place where your co-workers are at home or spread around the globe, I invite you to check out the book. Since publication date isn’t until the end of April, you’ll be hearing more as the date gets nearer. In the meantime, I blog and write regularly at The Remote Leadership Institute site. Check it out or follow us on Twitter @LeadingRemotely