Happy New Year – 2013 – The Year of Completed Projects and Fun

Happy New Year to all of you! 2013 is going to be incredible. Even better than 2012 and that should be amazing. (And check out how cool my 2012 was) I’ve dubbed 2013: The Year of Completed Projects and Fun (By the way, if you haven’t already seen them, you should check out my annual … Continue reading “Happy New Year – 2013 – The Year of Completed Projects and Fun”

Duty calls
My duty is to complete my mission and have fun doing it!

Happy New Year to all of you! 2013 is going to be incredible. Even better than 2012 and that should be amazing. (And check out how cool my 2012 was)

I’ve dubbed 2013: The Year of Completed Projects and Fun

(By the way, if you haven’t already seen them, you should check out my annual predictions for 2013)

The reason is that as I did my end of the year evaluations, I realized that some of my biggest pain points are the projects that I’ve begun but not completed. I’m pretty good at finishing things but the sheer volume of projects, ideas, books, stories, and websites that I take on has left me with at least a years worth of major projects that I want to finish. Completing these projects in 2013 will not only benefit my life (and hopefully yours too) but it will also be fun. After all, I never take on a project without it promising to be fun.

The problem is that sometimes I get sidetracked or outside pressures come into play and projects begin to go in different directions that I intended them to. The pressures can be from family, friends, business interests, politics, or life in general – but this resistance comes up and takes something that was created to be fun and makes it not so fun. The easy thing to do at that point is to head in another direction and abandon the project – I’ve done that.  But, some ideas are just too good to let die and too fun to let a bunch of sticks in the mud spoil them.

Take Vagobond.com for instance. Over the past few years, I turned it from a fun way to share my travel and life into a full time job! And what happened over 2011-2012 was that I began to listen to all kinds of experts on business, travel blogging, web design, SEO, marketers, social media, and monetization experts. Lots of their ideas were good, but the truth is that a lot of what they were pushing wasn’t at all what I wanted to do. Vagobond stopped being fun! I was no longer able to say the things I wanted to say, have the fun I wanted to have, or go in the direction I wanted to go. I knew that I had to do something drastic. I even thought about shutting the site down, quitting, or selling it!

Instead, I dis-associated myself from Vagobond. I put together my own separate social media accounts, began to develop this website, and made Vagobond into something that was not me. I think that decision may have saved me and Vagobond. What’s funny, is that by doing that, I not only freed myself to be me but I also freed Vagobond to go in the most fun direction possible because the truth is, it’s no fun to feel trapped. I’m really excited about the direction Vagobond is heading in this year. It’s heading back towards fun! Check out What to Expect from Vagobond in 2013!

That’s not my only project for 2013 though it is a full time job. Here are the other things I’m working on in 2013.

Editing, Rewriting, and Publishing

I’ve already begun the process of cleaning up my past work. The truth is, a lot of it is messy and needs to be rewritten, re-editied, and re-published. The process begins with my first novel Slackville Road which I am rewriting as a serialized newsletter called The Madman.

In The Madman. I am rewriting that novel and sending it to you in weekly installments. When Slackville Road is done, I’m going to rewrite The Princess and the Vagabond – my first Fairy Tale. In 2013 I will also re-edit Liminal TravelNot My Morocco, Rough Living Tips and Tales of a Vagabond,  and The Hu FactorAll of them need work and this is the year I’m going to give it to them. I’m also going to develop new cover art where needed and re-publish them as both print and ebook versions. I know – it’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it. One of my favorite illustrators has even agreed to have a look at my fairy tale…I’m hoping he likes it enough to illustrate it!

Writing and Publishing

It’s not just a year for working on old projects. It’s a year for finishing projects. Ten years later, I’ve finished writing Smooth Living: Beyond the Life of a Vagabond. It’s the sequel to Rough Living: Tips and Tales of a Vagabond and will blow your mind when the editing is finished and I publish it.  I will also publish the novel I wrote last year The Keys of the Riad. This novel is currently in the hands of a couple of publishers and I have high hopes for it. I am also going to submit Douchebags, Fags, and Hags for the Amazon Breakout Novel of the Year in the coming weeks.

Come November and NANOWRIMO 2013 – I’m going to finally write the sequel to The Hu Factor. In addition to that I am working on book one of a non-fiction series called The Invented God. All of these projects are going to be completed by the end of 2013. If I have some extra writing time, I’ll work on finishing Blue Eyed Bastards. 

But that’s not all…

The International Association of Online Travel Journalists

Last year, I created an association for online travel journalists. As usually happens, some nasty people made nasty comments and their nasty followers repeated all the nasty comments. The whole thing became bogged down as I gave up control to the naysayers who were doing nothing to drive it forward. This year, this organization gets a big kick in the ass and I’m going to do it my way. If people don’t like it, they can hike it.

Travel and Family

One of the biggest challenges of 2012 was being forced to live in Morocco while we wait for my wife’s visa to the USA to be approved. Each time we moved forward, we had to overcome another paperwork challenge – not easy when you consider that we were dealing with two of the most nightmarish paperwork bureaucracies in the world. Last week, I sent what I hope is the last batch of paperwork to the USA.  Next (I hope) is the Visa Interview and then the big move to the USA with my wife and daughter. Huge challenges lie ahead, but I look forward to them! I’m not making any travel plans for 2013 beyond getting my family to the USA.  It’s my most important project!

Vagobond Travel Media, LLC

 

I haven’t quite figured out how to reign in this beast yet. Over 2012 I acquired more than 50 travel sites. That was all fine and good as long as there were link sales, advertising sales, and sponsorships but with those drying up amidst the Google Panda and Penguin updates…I’m not sure exactly what to do with my two score and ten sites…I’ll figure something out though.

Micro Victory Army

This is my favorite project of 2013. I’ve intentionally kept it simple and easy. I’ve written a manifesto of the Micro Victory, I am learning how to build an android app, and I am keeping track of my own micro victories and sharing them with the hashtag #microvictory – I invite you to do the same! Join the Micro Victory Army and lets kick the world’s ass.

Gardening and Permaculture

It’s been far too long since I had a garden. This year, I will find a place for my family to live and I will plant and work in a garden. 2013 is also the year I will finally take a Permaculture Design Course and become certified. This is a long standing goal that it’s time I meet.

More Fun in 2013

I’m going to have more fun in 2013 than ever before. Everything above may sound like work to you, but to me, it sounds fun. In addition, I’m going to have fun with my wife, my daughter, my friends, and my life. More hiking, more biking, more art, more fun. More sun, more water, more laughter, more friends. I hope you will let me count you among my friends. By the way – fun for me often involves pissing on the accepted or expected. If you can’t take that – you probably can’t take me.

The Project I Won’t Complete in 2013

The project I won’t compete in 2013 is my life. My life is my work and my biggest project by far. I’m going to make leaps and bounds on it this year, but it won’t be completed for another sixty years at least by my reckoning.

Happy New Year – 2013 – The Year of Completed Projects and Fun

Duty calls
My duty is to complete my mission and have fun doing it!

Happy New Year to all of you! 2013 is going to be incredible. Even better than 2012 and that should be amazing. (And check out how cool my 2012 was)

I’ve dubbed 2013: The Year of Completed Projects and Fun

(By the way, if you haven’t already seen them, you should check out my annual predictions for 2013)

The reason is that as I did my end of the year evaluations, I realized that some of my biggest pain points are the projects that I’ve begun but not completed. I’m pretty good at finishing things but the sheer volume of projects, ideas, books, stories, and websites that I take on has left me with at least a years worth of major projects that I want to finish. Completing these projects in 2013 will not only benefit my life (and hopefully yours too) but it will also be fun. After all, I never take on a project without it promising to be fun.

The problem is that sometimes I get sidetracked or outside pressures come into play and projects begin to go in different directions that I intended them to. The pressures can be from family, friends, business interests, politics, or life in general – but this resistance comes up and takes something that was created to be fun and makes it not so fun. The easy thing to do at that point is to head in another direction and abandon the project – I’ve done that.  But, some ideas are just too good to let die and too fun to let a bunch of sticks in the mud spoil them.

Take Vagobond.com for instance. Over the past few years, I turned it from a fun way to share my travel and life into a full time job! And what happened over 2011-2012 was that I began to listen to all kinds of experts on business, travel blogging, web design, SEO, marketers, social media, and monetization experts. Lots of their ideas were good, but the truth is that a lot of what they were pushing wasn’t at all what I wanted to do. Vagobond stopped being fun! I was no longer able to say the things I wanted to say, have the fun I wanted to have, or go in the direction I wanted to go. I knew that I had to do something drastic. I even thought about shutting the site down, quitting, or selling it!

Instead, I dis-associated myself from Vagobond. I put together my own separate social media accounts, began to develop this website, and made Vagobond into something that was not me. I think that decision may have saved me and Vagobond. What’s funny, is that by doing that, I not only freed myself to be me but I also freed Vagobond to go in the most fun direction possible because the truth is, it’s no fun to feel trapped. I’m really excited about the direction Vagobond is heading in this year. It’s heading back towards fun! Check out What to Expect from Vagobond in 2013!

That’s not my only project for 2013 though it is a full time job. Here are the other things I’m working on in 2013.

Editing, Rewriting, and Publishing

I’ve already begun the process of cleaning up my past work. The truth is, a lot of it is messy and needs to be rewritten, re-editied, and re-published. The process begins with my first novel Slackville Road which I am rewriting as a serialized newsletter called The Madman.

In The Madman. I am rewriting that novel and sending it to you in weekly installments. When Slackville Road is done, I’m going to rewrite The Princess and the Vagabond – my first Fairy Tale. In 2013 I will also re-edit Liminal TravelNot My Morocco, Rough Living Tips and Tales of a Vagabond,  and The Hu FactorAll of them need work and this is the year I’m going to give it to them. I’m also going to develop new cover art where needed and re-publish them as both print and ebook versions. I know – it’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it. One of my favorite illustrators has even agreed to have a look at my fairy tale…I’m hoping he likes it enough to illustrate it!

Writing and Publishing

It’s not just a year for working on old projects. It’s a year for finishing projects. Ten years later, I’ve finished writing Smooth Living: Beyond the Life of a Vagabond. It’s the sequel to Rough Living: Tips and Tales of a Vagabond and will blow your mind when the editing is finished and I publish it.  I will also publish the novel I wrote last year The Keys of the Riad. This novel is currently in the hands of a couple of publishers and I have high hopes for it. I am also going to submit Douchebags, Fags, and Hags for the Amazon Breakout Novel of the Year in the coming weeks.

Come November and NANOWRIMO 2013 – I’m going to finally write the sequel to The Hu Factor. In addition to that I am working on book one of a non-fiction series called The Invented God. All of these projects are going to be completed by the end of 2013. If I have some extra writing time, I’ll work on finishing Blue Eyed Bastards. 

But that’s not all…

The International Association of Online Travel Journalists

Last year, I created an association for online travel journalists. As usually happens, some nasty people made nasty comments and their nasty followers repeated all the nasty comments. The whole thing became bogged down as I gave up control to the naysayers who were doing nothing to drive it forward. This year, this organization gets a big kick in the ass and I’m going to do it my way. If people don’t like it, they can hike it.

Travel and Family

One of the biggest challenges of 2012 was being forced to live in Morocco while we wait for my wife’s visa to the USA to be approved. Each time we moved forward, we had to overcome another paperwork challenge – not easy when you consider that we were dealing with two of the most nightmarish paperwork bureaucracies in the world. Last week, I sent what I hope is the last batch of paperwork to the USA.  Next (I hope) is the Visa Interview and then the big move to the USA with my wife and daughter. Huge challenges lie ahead, but I look forward to them! I’m not making any travel plans for 2013 beyond getting my family to the USA.  It’s my most important project!

Vagobond Travel Media, LLC

 

I haven’t quite figured out how to reign in this beast yet. Over 2012 I acquired more than 50 travel sites. That was all fine and good as long as there were link sales, advertising sales, and sponsorships but with those drying up amidst the Google Panda and Penguin updates…I’m not sure exactly what to do with my two score and ten sites…I’ll figure something out though.

Micro Victory Army

This is my favorite project of 2013. I’ve intentionally kept it simple and easy. I’ve written a manifesto of the Micro Victory, I am learning how to build an android app, and I am keeping track of my own micro victories and sharing them with the hashtag #microvictory – I invite you to do the same! Join the Micro Victory Army and lets kick the world’s ass.

Gardening and Permaculture

It’s been far too long since I had a garden. This year, I will find a place for my family to live and I will plant and work in a garden. 2013 is also the year I will finally take a Permaculture Design Course and become certified. This is a long standing goal that it’s time I meet.

More Fun in 2013

I’m going to have more fun in 2013 than ever before. Everything above may sound like work to you, but to me, it sounds fun. In addition, I’m going to have fun with my wife, my daughter, my friends, and my life. More hiking, more biking, more art, more fun. More sun, more water, more laughter, more friends. I hope you will let me count you among my friends. By the way – fun for me often involves pissing on the accepted or expected. If you can’t take that – you probably can’t take me.

The Project I Won’t Complete in 2013

The project I won’t compete in 2013 is my life. My life is my work and my biggest project by far. I’m going to make leaps and bounds on it this year, but it won’t be completed for another sixty years at least by my reckoning.

Book Review: The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau

Review by Vago Damitio

The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau

Let me get this out of the way. I like Chris Guillebeau. I haven’t met him in person, but I’ve been connected with him on social media for quite a while now, I subscribe to his email newsletter and I think he’s one smart dude. I admire what he has done and continues to do.

I feel like it’s important to share that before I begin this review because I’m going to be brutally honest about a few things both positive and negative in this review. Things about Chris, about the book, about the vast majority of people out there, and about myself. So, if you’re willing to accept that, please read on. Continue reading “Book Review: The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau”

In your face, mother fucker.

I’m going to start referring people to this post when they call me an asshole, a dick, or any other name intended to offend me.

I always laugh when someone takes the time to point out I’m an asshole like it will mean something to me. I mean, come on, haven’t you read my books? Even if you just read the reviews you can get the gist of it. I’m an asshole and I’m unapologetic about it.

Of course, there are about fifty people who will disagree with me on that – maybe say that there is a deeper side to me, a kinder, gentler side, a loving side. Those are the fifty people I would dive on a grenade for. Not because they love me, but because they are truly superior human beings whom I respect, admire, and would do anything for.The way I look at it, there are two types of people in the world. Those who deserve respect and those who don’t. Everyone starts at zero and our actions are what define us. (Okay, three types – the powerless and helpless whom we must protect) That’s it.

It’s amazing how quickly people define themselves and how incredible some people prove to be when you least expect it. On the other side, it’s amazing what douchebags 99% of the population really are. Including me – the unapologetic asshole.


Now that you’ve read that, read this:
“I have never met someone who is living a bold and successful life—and by successful I mean prosperous, kind, and in touch with the meaningfulness of what they?re doing — who has apologized for being perfectionistic, mercurial, unrelenting, or whatever their slightly controversial hallmark characteristics are. You will always be too much of something for someone: too big, too loud, too soft, too edgy. If you round out your edges, you lose your edge.” ~Danielle LaPorte

Rocking the fucking Rou

My back hurts, my eyes hurt, my mind hurts, but I’m rocking the fucking casbah even though I don’t live in it anymore.

In the past 24 hours I’ve posted 44 travel stories to 19 different travel blogs. I’ve hired a social media assistant and taken care of six major wordrpess issues that have been kicking my ass.

I’ve pissed off four advertisers, told three guest posters to go fuck themselves, had a gnarly fight with my wife and managed to secure a couple of nice contracts for advertising over the next couple of months.

I’ve begun developing a network of twenty thingstodoin_______.org blogs and have brought ten sites to life that were simply going stagnant in the water. I’ve revamped my social media strategy completely, done a minor redesign of vagobond.com and held my daughter until she went to sleep four times. That’s in the past 24 hours.

I’m fucking exhausted, out of patience, low on sleep, and feeling distracted to no end, but I keep on pushing on. And as I see things getting done, I know that I’m doing it for a reason and it feels good.

Keep on rocking on.