People have been asking me for years to write a book about myself, something I resisted doing for a long time. I always figured I was a little to young for that (now at the ripe old age of 34) and also thought that I wouldn’t have much to say. After meeting with a publisher at a book signing for Kris Paronto’s last book, I had a bit of a change of heart. It was actually the earnestness I found in Kris and Jocko Willink’s work that finally convinced me to sit down and tell my own story in the most candid terms possible. So I began to write the one story I had always avoided, my own.
Working as a journalist, a researcher, and a novelist, I often found myself staring at a blank screen. Writing a novel, I would sit back and ask myself: well where the hell is this plot going to go next? As a journalist you ask yourself, holy shit, where in the world am I going to find a source who can speak to this obscure subject? When I sat down to write my own story, it just flowed out of me. I guess I should not have been surprised. A old LRRP/Ranger officer told me he had a similar experience when he began to write about his time in Vietnam.
I found that the stories from Iraq and Afghanistan just kept coming and coming, I ended up having to cut myself short for the sake of brevity as this was supposed to be a memoir rather than a treatise on every mission I ever went on or every prank we pulled on each other in the Army. The book covers some of the the greatest times of my life as well as some of my darkest moments. There is a lot that I will have to say about this book in the coming months but what I want to point out right now are two things that will set this book apart from many of the others in this genre.
- There is no co-author or ghost writer on this book. I wrote the entire thing with one of those big fat crayons. Yes, contrary to popular belief, Rangers and 18B’s can use their words. How good a job I did will of course be determined by the readers.
- This book covers not just my military career but also my transition into the civilian world and subsequent reporting trips I made to combat zones like Iraq, Syria, and the more semi-permissive environment of the Philippines. This book has perhaps four pages total about Ranger Indoctrination, Special Forces Assessment and Selection, and Ranger School. This book isn’t about training, it’s about actually doing weird things in strange places.
I thank everyone for their interest and patience with the development of this project which is due for publication in October. It will hit books stores, there will be a audio book, a e-book, and all that good stuff. You can get your pre-order in at Amazon. I’ll have more updates soon, and will also be resuming work on my 5th novel sooner rather than later.