I have been writing this book for 15 years. To do research for it I have studied tae kwon do, hapkido, kickboxing, muay thai, boxing, sword fighting, and jiujitsu, which is now my new love. I've had my neck twisted, bones broken, stitches in places you couldn't imagine, tattoos, blown out a knee, and a bamboo skewer pierced my foot, nearly severing it, close to bleeding all the way out; I almost died in a forest in Thailand chasing this story. I have learned how to rock climb so I can know what it feels like for Doc to rescue a slave lead climbing a chimney. Then almost died again free climbing a 15m chimney doing just about everything you shouldn't do as a climber, just because I was at a point in my life where I didn't care how my limits were pushed. And I wanted to see what Doc would do. I went to diving school in Thailand just to make sure I got all of the terminology correct. I learned how to speak Japanese, Sinhalese, Spanish, and Korean, meditated in a Buddhist temple for a year, slept on the street, jumped borders... all to try to understand the life of the Wanderer Doc in the story. This story is, has been, and always will be, my life. Regardless if it sells or not, I'm glad I finished it.
For about 5 years I wasn't at all serious about it, and for another 2 - 3 years I couldn't even bear the thought of doing anything with it. Just thinking about it made me physically sick. I don't know why - maybe because I was the one that was standing in my own way. Isn't that the case for anything that we haven't accomplished yet? It's all about ourselves getting out of our own way, stepping on and all over our own egos in order to get the shit done that we need to do, done. And now I just feel like my brain is lighter, like that proverbial monkey on the back isn't there anymore and I can breathe more freely. It's a liberating feeling, and I don't know why I didn't go after this feeling sooner. Wait, yeah I do know - because it wasn't time yet, and it was meant to teach me patience. And to never give up.