#9—Captain's Log: October 2021

You might be confused. Doesn’t this email usually come from MailChimp? Yes, yes, it does. But I was sick of paying $50 / mo. for something I can get for free here. So, from now on, I’ll be sending Letters out via Substack.

Mom & Dad came to Denver to visit Kate and me a few weeks ago. Since I moved out of their house, I've lived in apartments, so it was such a treat to have them over to our house for the first time. Dad and I bonded over building a picnic table and grilling steaks.

Short Updates

  • Andy’s Newsletter: What? Isn’t this Andy’s Newsletter? I know it’s confusing, but I’m not perfect. For the last few weeks, I’ve been sending out a private newsletter to my coaching clients with links and resources for startup CEOs and founders looking to both perform at a higher level and stay sane while doing so. I’m also doing that on Substack. But while Letters will go out ~4-5x / year, I’ll send Andy’s Newsletter about once a week. I’m keeping them separate since this one is way more personal, and I don’t want to subject y’all to an email full of startup founder shite if you’re not interested in it. Read the first edition and sign up to get it in your inbox here if you're interested.
  • I’m Writing a Novel: I've been running an experiment for the last year: limit my coaching work to about 30 hours a week and see what happens with all the spare time. It’s been a struggle not to habitually fill it with more “work.” But about three weeks ago, I got a migraine. And when I get migraines, I hop in the shower because the hot water helps with the headache. It’s such a cliché, but as I stood there for a half-hour with no screen or distraction but running water, I began to get an idea for a novel. I’ve been working on it since, and I can’t wait to share more with you.
  • Captain’s Log, Commonplace, and Readings Lists: For those of you new-ish folks, I keep and continually update a bunch of resources on GitHub. I call it my “Captain’s Log.” I recently updated my 2021 Commonplace to reflect my year thus far. I’ve also updated my “On Writing” reading list with lots of resources I’ve been using to learn how to write fiction.

Cool Stuff

  • More Housing: I try to stay away from politics in Letters. But the one issue I’ll keep beating the drum on is that we need to build WAY more housing all over the U.S. This is a great article on why. One stat to blow your mind: if NYC, San Jose, and San Francisco loosened rules on dense housing, U.S. GDP would be 8.9% higher 🤯. Imagine if we did that in cities across the U.S.
  • Bioswales: I’d never heard this term before, but thanks to Zach Klein now I know it. Bioswales are a beautiful way to collect rainwater in cities, and I hope they become a major feature of cities going forward.
  • Brandon Sanderson Teaches How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy: For those of you who don’t know Brandon Sanderson, he’s one of the greatest living fantasy writers. I’ve read almost all of his 20+ books and loved every single one of them. And it turns out he teaches a class at BYU on how to write sci-fi and fantasy, and there are recordings of 14+ of his lectures on YouTube for FREE. I love the internet. If you’re even generally interested in how to tell a great story, I recommend giving these a watch.
  • Robert McKee’s Books on Screenwriting: Kate has begun working on a few screenplays. Not only do I think that’s awesome, it’s part of what gave me the courage to start working on a novel. I’ve also been feeding off of her learning experience, following her reading. If you’re interested in writing a novel, screenplay, or again if you’re just generally interested in learning how to tell a good story, these books are a big recommend from me. There are three: Story, Dialogue, and Character.
  • LoFi Fruits Music: I’ve been jamming to this LoFi artist when I need something instrumental to help me get my focus on. Hoping you’ll dig it as much as I do!

How You Can Help

  • No asks this month! If you have a minute to spare, reply to this email with a bit about what you’ve been up to!

Thanks for reading—I’m looking forward to what’s next.
Andy.