I’m sort of emotional right now.
Jason Moore just left, after 30 days of being my roommate and “apprentice.” We met at WDS two years ago, and I knew instantly that we would be friends. I just had a feeling.
A few months ago, I received an email from Jason. He was living in Norway at the time, but was US-bound, and thought it might be fun to swing by Portland for a “30 day challenge,” instead of going straight home to Boulder. He had been wanting to start his own business for years. He had a number of ideas, even a full ebook that he’d written but had never launched!
He wanted to come to Portland and hire me as his coach for the month. I immediately jumped at the opportunity. It sounded like such fun, and I adore co-working (concoction with friends = nothing better!) I actually have a long term goal of opening a co-working space in Portland, so this felt like I’d be getting a little taste of that.
“Yes!!! Come. We will co-work. We’ll start something up for you. It’ll be a blast!” I replied.
And so on November 3, Jason arrived and I set him up on the futon in my office. This arrangement work out better than I could have hoped. The month was so much fun. From vision boarding, to a “Getting Jiggy with it” karaoke night, to Paleo Thanksgiving, to many games of Monopoly Deal before bed, to watching him delight Grendel with rounds of roughhousing, to singing Backstreet Boys in the kitchen, and many many giggles throughout. It was a month I’ll never forget.
Best of all, we did indeed build Jason a business. We worked really hard (I was probably a bit of a harsh taskmaster at times, but he knew what he was getting himself into).
He launched his book on Wednesday, Dec 5, and I predict that it’s going to do very well. Of course, he has his fears and doubts, like everyone who launches anything for the first time. But that’s okay. I was there as his coach to reassure him when the self-doubt emerged, and crack the whip when necessary.
I love coaching, but rarely do I get to do it in such an intense format. Teaching is the ultimate way to solidify knowledge in your mind, and it felt great being able to walk him through stuff I had already done myself– everything from editing and designing the book, to writing sales copy, planning out a launch sequence, running a pre-launch contest that drums up excitement for the product, all of the technical details like integrating E-junkie, Aweber, and Paypal, and what exactly to do on launch day.
I know a lot of you have goals of launching a book one day or starting a business, so I thought it might be fun to use Jason as a case study and ask him a few questions about the experience of launching his own product in 30 days.
What were the last 30 days like for you?
As Emilie learned when she helped me edit my sales page, I can be a sucker for adjectives. So let me just try using one word right here, these last 30 days were Magical, Insightful, Challenging, Fear Conquering and AMAZING!!! (Oops that didn’t work, sorry again Em.)
When I arrived there was so much excitement in the air, I get that a lot when I hang out with Emilie. This feeling that something is floating in the ether and Em and I are just kind of hanging out with it, waiting for it to stop by and say hello. Not pushing too much, searching for the ideas, discussing them, but not being too rough. Letting the creative process unfold in an organic and enjoyable way. I feel like we have this incredible safe place between us where ideas can be discussed and supported or shot down without any hard feelings. We can think, create, share and work in the moment free from any judgment or negativity. True friendship and everything I could ask for from a co-working partner in crime, coach and mentor.
Not surprisingly, these reasons are what also make the Puttytribe such an inspiring and productive space. Emilie brings that same safe feeling where ideas can be exchanged and this community of multipotentialites can grow, learn and achieve personal success. I got to sit in a few Puttytribe huddles and conquered another personal fear of playing guitar in front of other people during a Puttytribe open mic. I mean, does any other online community have an open mic! How cool is that. The Puttytribe is more of an off-line traditional community that happens to take place online. People connecting in a real way to help each other achieve their goals and have fun along the way. Isn’t that what an online community is supposed to be about?
The first few days we brainstormed, talked with experts in a variety of fields and just sat with our ideas. One day not too far into the month, Emilie asked to read my long forgotten ebook. Of course I was petrified of her critique because, damn Em can write, we all know that. I sent her the book and didn’t see her until later in the day. I walked into the room, she paused and looked at me and said “I read your book…” “Here we go” I thought to my myself. I wasn’t sure which way this would go. Needless to say it was an incredible relief to hear that she thought the book was great and that I had a bonafide product on my hard drive.
The rest of the month was better than I even imagined it would be. We worked, very hard, but it was also a blast. We hung out at coffee shops, bounced around Portland, sung karaoke, took Grendel for walks, worked out in the park, talked about some real shit, laughed and just had an all around great time.
I always dreamed about launching my own product, something that would help people and at the same time provide some passive income, a true win win. Overall, after 30 days I feel totally empowered. Going through the entire process, learning everything from a true expert, getting the encouragement I needed and coming out on the other end with a product and a dream realized after only one month is something I will never forget. I will carry this with me to future projects and successes. That is what makes this whole experience invaluable.
Why 30 days? And how did you come up with this crazy plan to infiltrate Putty headquarters? :)
I remember I was jogging one day in Oslo, Norway and listening to Tony Robbins and feeling crazy inspired. I was staying with my girlfriend and only had about a month until my tourist visa expired. My plan was to visit family in October but the month of November I was totally free to go anywhere. I had been pondering where to go for a few days. This particular day, Tony Robbins was instructing me (yes me!) to stop everything I was doing and run home and take 3 action steps for each of the goals I wrote down the previous day. So that’s what I did, and cute little Emilie just appeared in my head smiling away and I thought, “Well let me see if she wants to do some kind of a 30 day challenge.” To this day I don’t know where the idea came from, it just dropped into my lap and I acted on it immediately. I jumped on facebook and sent her a message and to my delight she was just as excited about it as I was.
It was a wild ride, because I knew going into the month we’d come out with something great, but I didn’t know what that would be. The anticipation of that is a total rush. I knew that if I commited to one month with her, something great would come out of it. And it did.
This kind of self-imposed challenge can push you further than you can imagine. If you go into a month, a week, or whatever and absolutely commit to getting something a project done, it can be done.
When did you start writing your book, and where were you at with it before we started working together?
I started writing the book roughly a year and a half ago. It was after a painful breakup and I didn’t really know what to do with myself. I knew I had some great knowledge to share that could help people on this particular topic so I just started writing. It was this giant word document with all sorts of fucked up formatting and completely disorganized. The important thing was getting it all out on paper.
Then I just stopped writing it and moved onto some other project (sound familiar to anybody here?). Then for awhile I didn’t want anything to do with it because I knew there was a bunch of stuff I wanted to add but kept putting it off.
When I left for Norway I told myself I would finish the book overseas. I got very motivated a few times only to have the messed up word doc crash and lose the new content. Then I was digusted.
However, these things all happen for a reason because when I arrived in Portland I was very motivated. The book was about 75% complete and just chilling on my hard drive. I had learned a lot since I begin writing and knew exactly what to add to the book to finish it and make it a fantastic resource. Getting Emilie on board, then setting aside the time and committing to the book made it a reality.
What was the hardest thing about writing and releasing your own product?
As hard as the writing can be at times, releasing the product is even harder, at least for me. It always seemed simple in theory but all of the tech stuff involved as well as the fears of if it’s good enough pile up and turn into what seems to be an insurmountable set of hurdles. I had some idea of what needed to be done but at the same time was intimidated by it all. You learn so much about yourself when you go through something like this. Not only that, the process teaches you a ton of usable skills that can translate to other projects.
Do you think launching a book and/or running a business is a good endeavor for a multipotentialite? Why or why not?
Absolutely. There is an endless amount of things to do with launching an ebook and/or running a business. If you get bored on one task you can switch gears to something else that needs to get done. And us multipods are all about acquiring skills and doing different things. About partway through this project I purchased the Non-Designer’s Design Book by Robin Williams (recommended) so I could learn design basics. Emilie did such an awesome job of designing the front cover of my book that I wanted the inside to look nice as well. Learning skills on the fly, creating and trying different things are guaranteed for ebook launches and/or running a Renaissance Business.
Working side-by-side for a month, you got a good glimpse at my life as a “full-time multipotentialite,” running a Renaissance Business. What, if anything, surprised you the most about the way I live and work?
I was very impressed with your routine, and how well you know yourself. Working alongside you, I learned several things. As a multipotentialite it’s important to know when the ideal time is to tackle certain tasks, then to have discipline and set time aside everyday to do that. Em does her writing, her creative stuff from morning to lunch, and she is disciplined about it. I don’t mess with Em in the morning, because she is creating epic stuff that helps all of us. Also, your dedication to the Puttytribe and your business is just awesome. I remember one day, I looked over at Emilie and she had this huge grin on her face, sitting in front of her computer she say “This is my job!” That will inspire anybody to do something they truly love, and it inspired me as well.
I also learned that I don’t like the smell of bone broth in the morning ;)
(Note from Emilie: bone broth is one of the most nutrient dense, bio-available foods. Too bad for you, Jason!)
Any words of advice for the multipods in the audience who dream of launching their own book or business?
Only two words: DO IT! You’ll never have all of the answers before you start. Just get going and figure it out along the way. Don’t be afraid to invest in your education and yourself.
When I sold my first ebook it was the greatest feeling. I know I am helping somebody with something they need and feel honored and proud that they are choosing to use my knowledge to help them out.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Don’t hold the Backstreet Boys thing against me.
If anybody wants to pick my brain about anything else let’s get a huddle going!
Check out Jason’s book, Breaking into Event Marketing: Travel the Road like a Rockstar. It’s great, and I couldn’t be prouder of my star pupil.
My dog is going to be absolutely heartbroken now that Jason’s gone (I will too), but I have no doubt that our paths will cross again, and that there’s a lot more where this came from.
Do you dream of launching a book or business one day? Got any questions for my apprentice, Jason, about the process?