Something I Learned About Myself

When the packages containing the physical proofs of my first two books arrived, I was quite surprised that rather than being excited and anxious to open them–like a young child at Christmas–I was reluctant to do so. I put the packages aside and worked on other things for a while. It was a most unexpected reaction.

It took me some time to figure out why I was reacting that way, then it dawned on me. I love the process of writing and developing children’s books, and learning and managing the most effective and quickest ways to get them published. That’s where the fun, juice, learning, and growth are for me.

Once I held the physical proof in my hand, that signaled the end of the race, and the end of the fun relating to the creation of that book. Everything beyond that point for that book would feel anti-climatic.

I made sure to take a little time to savor the moment, but it took a conscious act to do so, and for me it was bittersweet.

I think that is also the reason why I like to have multiple projects under various stages of development all the time. Each project has points at which there is nothing to do but wait (for the illustrations, layouts, printer, mail delivery, etc.) Waiting would frustrate and bore me.

With multiple projects, I always have something fun to do and always feel as though progress is being made.

Still, it isn’t all about the process.

I’m filled with joy when I think of reading my stories to my grandchildren when they become old enough, and that my books may bring smiles and laughter to other children and their families.

With Love,


About russtowne

My wife and I have been married since 1979. We have 3 adult children and 4 young grandsons. I manage a wealth management firm I founded in 2003. My Beloved is a Special Education teacher for Kindergartners and First Graders. I'm a published author of 23 books in a variety of genres for grownups and children. In addition to my family, friends, investing, and writing, my passions include reading, watching classic movies, experiencing waves crashing on rocky shores, hiking in ancient redwood forests, and enjoying our small redwood grove and fern garden.
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10 Responses to Something I Learned About Myself

  1. Redneck Garage says:

    I agree with you that the drive and fun behind any project is the planning and execution. I do enjoy standing back and admiring a completed project. I too like to have multiple projects to work on so I am kept busy. Some may enjoy the easy job but I need to be challenged otherwise it leads to what I call brain rot.

    • russtowne says:

      I know what you mean. I made a dream come true by building a company from scratch so I could retire in my early 40’s. But I very quickly found that I hated retirement. I felt my brain was beginning to atrophy. Unfortunately, I also didn’t like the industry in which I’d built my company. So I just began doing only things I LOVE to do and began doing some so well that they started to become income streams. My primary source of income now is investment management–something that I’d done for years for free friends and relatives. They liked the results and talked me into doing it professionally. So now I’m getting paid to do what I love and happily did for free.

  2. I’ve done that myself.
    But congrats! 🙂

  3. You are not the only one to feel like that at times when it comes to opening a parcel your grandkids will find it awesome that their grandfather wrote the book he reads to them

    • russtowne says:

      Thank you, Joanne. I hope that is indeed their reaction. Some of the books actually have characters with their name in them, and the dedications are often to my grandchildren and their parents. A story I’ve begun to write involves a character named Zach, the name of my second grandchild and the first of the twins to be born. The name of my first grandson, Thomas is prominent in “Rusty Bear and Thomas, Too”, the book scheduled to be published by September 30th.

  4. It’s similar to shopping for Christmas, decorating, buying gifts and wrapping them, Christmas music and children and church concerts…… And then comes Christmas morning the process is suddenly a let down because it’s over for another year..Diane

    • russtowne says:

      I see what you mean. In my case, by having multiple book projects going at the same time, I can keep the “feeling” of Christmas going all year long. ;-D!

  5. bulldog says:

    Know how you feel… hate to see the completed project… i enjoy our project as the software is continually under development…

    • russtowne says:

      Good point. Software is always needing updates, fixes, new features, etc. I’m glad for you that enjoy that it is a living thing, rather than something to be completed and then put on a shelf.

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