Resolution update: July 2015


1. Don’t die.

I woke up this morning, therefore I am. 

2. Lose 20 pounds.

Down seven pounds as of this morning.  

3. Do at least 100 push-ups and 100 sit-ups five days a week.

Done. I’ve added a plank every morning as well.

4. Stop drinking soda from two-liter bottles.

I didn’t drink soda from a two-liter bottle in July. Soda consumption remains reduced by at least half and water consumption has increased dramatically.     

5. Practice yoga at least five days a week.

I continue to practice yoga every morning. I am not good. Frankly, I'm a mess. I need a refresher from my coach. He has returned from the Pacific Northwest, and I hope to find time to meet with him before I leave for Brazil in a week.  

6. Learn to cook three good meals for my wife.

I have three recipes to plan for courtesy of a good friend. I have done nothing with them thus far. 


7. Complete my sixth novel before the end of the summer 2015.

The first 50 pages of what I hope will be my next novel are in the hands of my agent. I await word. The first 100 pages of what I wanted to be my next novel remain on my laptop. I continue progress on this book while I wait. I've written enough pages this year for a novel, but sadly, this doesn't count if they are spread across two books. 

8. Complete my seventh novel.

This book is also more than half finished. I may try to finish this book while in Brazil.  

9. Sell one children’s book to a publisher.

My agent has four finished children's books in her hands. I await word.

10. Sell a memoir to a publisher.

The memoir is written and polished. It will be paired with my book of essays for sale, so it remains on my laptop, waiting for the essays to be complete.  

11. Sell a book of essays to a publisher.

My book of essays did not sell, but the responses that we received from editors were exceptionally positive. In a few cases, it was not a pass as much as a request that the book be reorganized and written slightly differently than it is currently constituted. I have begun that process in earnest this week. 

12. Complete a book proposal for a book on storytelling.

Progress continues. It's almost fully outlined. I hope to complete this outline while in Brazil. 

13. Write a new screenplay.

I’m still revising my first screenplay based upon film agent’s notes (and had a huge breakthrough this month). I decided upon the story for the next screenplay.   

14. Write 50 pages of a new memoir about the years of 1991-1993.

The collection of essays that I have written may now encompass this period of time. This book may meld into the book of essays.  

15. Write a musical for a summer camp

Done! I was lucky enough to see it onstage in July. The feedback was outstanding. I hope to find it another home at some point. 

16. Publish at least one Op-Ed in a physical newspaper.

Done! I published an Op-Ed in the Hartford Courant in July on why I choose to write in McDonald's restaurants. 

17. Submit one or more short stories to at least three publishing outlets.

No progress.

18. Select three behaviors that I am opposed to and adopt them for one week, then write about my experiences on the blog.

I spent a week in July backing into parking spots, which was something I assumed was only done by lunatics of the highest order. I'll be writing about my experience in for a blog post (or perhaps an Op-Ed somewhere) in August.

I'm on the hunt for my second behavior.  

19. Build an author mailing list.

Done! My seventh monthly email went out yesterday. The job remains twofold:

  • Continue to create engaging content that will keep readers interested.
  • Build my subscription base.

If you're not signed up for my mailing list, you can do so here. 

20. Build a new website for



21. Produce a total of eight Speak Up storytelling events.

We will produce our seventh show at Real Art Ways this evening. A few tickets are still available. One show to go.  

22. Deliver my fourth TED Talk.


23. Build a website for Speak Up.

Done! It’s a single page on my new author website, and it’s not nearly as robust as we want it to eventually be, but Speak Up finally has a webpage where you can find dates of events, ticket information, an opportunity to sign up for the mailing list, and more. You can find our webpage at

24. Attend at least 10 Moth events with the intention of telling a story.

Done! I attended two Moth StorySLAMs in July. Sadly, my name wasn't picked from the hat either time. This brings my total number of Moth events in 2015 to 15. 

25. Win at least two Moth StorySLAMs.

I won a StorySLAM in April. I have come within a tenth of a point twice since then.    

26. Win a Moth GrandSLAM.

Done twice over! I won the New York GrandSLAM at the Music Hall of Williamsburg in June, bringing my total number of GrandSLAM wins this year to two.     

27. Launch at least one podcast.

We have a name. We are ready to launch. This will probably have to wait until I return from Brazil. 


28. Pitch at least three new projects to two smart people.

I pitched one of my project ideas (a podcast) to an NPR producer in July. I have now pitched two new projects to two smart people.  

29. Host at least one Shakespeare Circle.

Nothing scheduled yet.


30. Enroll in the final class needed for certification as a high school English teacher.

No progress. 

31. Set a new personal best in golf.

I shot a 46 in July, tying my personal best, and after scoring a 9 on the first hole. I have played less golf this summer than ever before because of an increasingly packed schedule, and it's hurting my heart. 

32. Post my progress in terms of these resolutions on this blog on the first day of every month.