Burn Zones, published June 2015.
What’s the book’s first line?
When I raced bicycles, I looked at races as having “burn zones”, which were relatively short periods of extraordinary effort that separated the winners and losers.
What’s the book about? Give us the “pitch”.
Burn Zones shares my successes and – most importantly – my failures, including my colossal life-altering collapse a decade ago. At the time, I owned over 4,000 apartment units across the USA and had a net worth in the tens of millions. I amassed so much by taking risks. But, I took one risk too many. A natural disaster triggered an implausible series of events which led to my downfall and, over the next eighteen months, I lost everything and ended up $26 million in debt.
What inspired you to write the book? A particular person? An event?
I needed to explain what happened. I was arrested. I have millions in dollars of judgments against me and bad credit. Newspaper articles proclaim that I was “under criminal investigation” and that “felony charges” were planned. The Mayor of Columbus “declared war” against me and labeled my prize property “Public Enemy #1”.
Potential investors and business associates have often run background checks and discovered what looks like my horrific past. I used to write long explanation letters to give my side of what happened. Nowadays, I just hand them a copy of Burn Zones.
What’s the main reason someone should really read this book?
To find the inspiration and strength to triumph over the burn zones which we all encounter in our lives. To learn that failure is not the end, but simply a step on the path to fulfilling whatever we want to achieve. To laugh and cry. Writing this book was therapeutic for me – as I wrote, I laughed and cried. Readers will likely do the same.