Today on the blog, I interview blogger and author Jeff Goins. In this interview, we talk about writing, finding purpose in life, and about his new book, Wrecked: When A Broken World Slams Into Your Comfortable Life. Jeff is also the author of You Are a Writer (So Start Acting Like One) and The Writer’s Manifesto (affiliate links). He writes at GoinsWriter.com, and you can connect with Him on Twitter and Facebook.
Roman: What inspired you to write this book?
Jeff: Over the years, I’ve heard countless stories of people who have been wrecked for an ordinary life and are living into a greater purpose. These include missionaries, schoolteachers, entrepreneurs, and more. They inspired me to write it.
Roman: Our culture tries to sell us the idea that a meaningful life is found in comfort, safety, money, and sex. However, your book proposes the opposite. Where do you believe a meaningful life comes from?
Jeff: Pain. Not wanton suffering like we sometimes see on the news, but the good kind of pain. The pain that happens when muscle stretches, when you learn a tough lesson. We don’t know what a gift life is until we experience loss. And when we share the pain of others, we learn compassion.
Roman: The story of how you got this book deal is pretty amazing. Could you share a little bit about that story?
Jeff: A couple years ago, I wrote an eBook for Change This, a website that Seth Godin helped start. The eBook was about my experience working with the nonprofit Adventures in Missions and how I saw lots of young people going overseas and returning home, feeling “wrecked.”
After serving in the developing world, these people couldn’t go back to their old, normal lives. The way they saw the world had been changed, ruined for good. I had a hunch that other people (not just missionaries) had experienced this, too, but I had no idea…
Over the years, thousands of people have come out of the woodwork to share their “wrecked” stories with me — in person, online, over the phone, wherever.
Moody Publishers contacted me last summer, wondering if I’d be interested in turning that manifesto into a full-length book.
I said I’d never thought of that but loved the idea. A few days later, I told them I was “in.” A year later, we had a book.
It took four months to write the book and several more to edit it. What emerged from the process was a message about the choices we make that shape us into the people we’re supposed to be.
Roman: What advice would you guys aspiring authors, and those who want to change the world for good?
Jeff: Write what moves you. If you can inspire yourself, you’ll probably inspire others.
Roman: Thanks Jeff, really appreciate you taking the time to answer these questions.
Jeff: Thanks, Roman!
I’ve read an advanced copy of Wrecked: When a Broken World Slams into your Comfortable Life (affiliate link), and I highly recommend you pick up a copy for yourself! The book comes out tomorrow, August 1, and you can pick up a copy at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, ChistianBook.com, or at your local bookstore. (NOTE: If you buy it this week, Jeff’s got a SPECIAL DEAL for you.) Also, Check out and subscribe to Jeff’s blog; there is so much good content on there, you could literally spend hours reading, learning, and being inspired.