Steve Bivans

Author, Fear-Less Life & Self-Publishing Coach

Adrift in a Sea of Questions

Hello fellow Hobbits and Friends,

I know it’s been a couple of weeks since I published anything, and I thought I should give you an update, or explanation for the pause.

There are several reasons for my lack of articles.

One, I’ve recently taken on the job of managing my neighborhood farmer’s market, and that has consumed a good deal of my time in the last month or so, trying to get up to speed as we began the new season.

Two, since I’m a writer, and therefore broke most of the time, I’ve also been looking for another part-time, or full-time position to stave off the banker-wolves that are always baying at the door, something that most of you can probably relate to. Searching for a job is a mind-numbing process in any circumstance, but I’m also increasingly drawn to find one that doesn’t suck the last remaining vestiges of my soul into some abyss from which it might not emerge. I would prefer to find a job that is in line with my life’s purpose: to build Shires and communities, and/or to bring spring to the trees.

Three, and probably most importantly, I’ve been swimming in a sea of questions about what direction to go with my writing in the near future. Should I begin writing another book? I think so, but on what? I’m uncertain as to what I should write about next. What would be most beneficial to my two life purposes? I’ve considered, and outlined, a book on my own personal transition from a conservative mind-set to a much more liberal one. I even have a working title: The Long Strange Trip: How a Straight, Conservative, Southern, Redneck-lookin’, White Boy, War-Hawk Pessimist Became a Pinko-Commie, Lesbian-Lovin’, Tree-Huggin’, Anti-Racist, Peacenik, Democratic Socialist Optimist, Zeitgeister. Yes, I’m aware that the title is too fucking long, but I kind of like it, though I’m sure I’ll tweak it some more. I’ve also considered writing some short books related to topics in Be a Hobbit. At the same time, I’ve been burying my head into economics, and I think that at some point I need to write about that, because at the heart of the solutions to the world’s problems is the way we think about property, wealth, money, and value.

I’m becoming more and more disillusioned with capitalism and the market economy in general. It seems inherently flawed. If it is, then it will have to be jettisoned at some point in the future. The question is, “What do we replace it with?” and “How do we transition away from it without inflicting even more suffering on the poorest of the world?” I’ve spent a good deal of time reading and watching the work of Peter Joseph and the Zeitgeist Movement, and I think he and they are on to something. But they are struggling with the transition away from a monetary economy, and it’s a difficult problem to solve. If you aren’t familiar with the Zeitgeist Movement, take a few minutes and watch the following video. If you can’t answer the Three Questions that Mr. Joseph asks–I cannot–then you will see that the world is indeed in a pickle, and we need to find solutions. If you can answer them, then you are certainly smarter than I, and he, and you need to contact him immediately with the answers.

Four, I’ve been struggling with another question: “How does one reach the willfully ignorant, the uneducated, or under-educated, with a message that is at least on the surface, very complicated?” Writing blog posts and expecting that it will reach those who don’t read is naive in the extreme, obviously, but more than that, it also won’t reach those who can and do read, but have already made up their mind that the world works in a very different way. How do I get the message across to them as well? I have been toying with the idea of expanding my Youtube video channel to include both short ‘question’ videos, where I pose Socratic type questions on small topics, in the hopes that some people will be drawn to contemplate them. Questions have a way of causing trouble in the mind, as you well know. I am also contemplating doing an interview series that I think I’m going to call Second Breakfast with Steve, in which I will sit down to breakfast with interesting and intelligent people and discuss the issues of the day, that are facing our planet currently, and get their take on them. It would be a similar format to Brian Rose’s London Real series, which is excellent by the way; you should check it out.

I’m sure there are other reasons why I haven’t published much lately, like gardening, general yardwork, housework, entertaining, BBQing, etc. I will try to get back on track now. But if there are weeks when you don’t see anything, just know that I’m still thinking. If you want to know what I’m up to, make sure to follow my on Facebook, and Twitter. I usually post stuff on there.

Steve Bivans is a FearLess Life & Self-Publishing Coach, the author of the Amazon #1 Best Sellers, Vikings, War and the Fall of the Carolingians,The End of Fear Itself, and the epic-length, self-help, sustainability tome, Be a Hobbit, Save the Earth: the Guide to Sustainable Shire Living, If you want to learn how write and self-publish a book to best-seller status, crush your limitations and Fears, and disrupt the status quo, contact Steve for a free consultation to see how he can help you change the world! CONTACT STEVE


  1. i think you should move to Missouri and teach at the University part time and write more books and live here 😉

    • That’s very sweet, Karen. lol Thank you for the offer! I’m quite happy in Saint Paul, but I promise I’ll write more books 🙂

      • Thanks H.J.! I tend to agree on the willfully ignorant, though I’m always trying to find ways to break that nut. Many of them think in ways that I used to think, and that is the most frustrating thing ever. You SHOULD move to the West Side of St. Paul! It rocks! I love the job at the market, precisely because it is ‘doing what I can, where I am.’

  2. Second Breakfast with Steve sounds like an awesome interview video idea! I’d watch.

    The questions of our age are tough. But we’ll only get answers – even partial – if we keep on discussing them and keep an open mind. That, however, can be overwhelming, especially when solutions appear nowhere in sight. Which is why returning to the ‘simple things we can all do right now’ ethos of Be A Hobbit is so empowering.

    As for reaching the willfully ignorant… They don’t want to be reached. You can take the horse to water, but you can’t make it drink. That said, video might be a shoe in the door.

    Congrats on being farmers market manager! You make me want to move to St Paul. It’s sounds like a great place to live.

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