A Radical Idea. (I’m Going To Write a Book.)

Just imagine, you’re sat fat, dumb and happy when BAM! Your engine shits itself. (And so do you.) Suddenly you’re forced to divert. You need to get on the ground pronto!

Before you know it, there you are. Grounded with a bum engine – a million miles from the original destination you had in mind. 

So, you find yourself sat around in your underpants on a Thursday afternoon scratching your whatsit wondering what to do with the rest of your life. (Probably not scratch your whatsit.) 

After twiddling your thumbs you decide, at exactly 3:34 pm, you’re going to grab the day by the horns. So, you make a cuppa and sit down at your desk. After checking facebook, twitter, instagram, youtube and then facebook and twitter again, you begin typing.

All that thumb twiddling has given you a radical idea. (Actually, it’s given you many, but not all of them are suitable from younger readers.) 

You decide that the time is now or never. After all, your wife is bringing home the bacon. You have no excuses. “No more thumb twiddling!” you say.

It’s down to business. 

So, ladies and gentlemen, here I am. This time I’m really doing it. I’m committing. I’m going all in. I’m going to start by stating it out loud.

But first let me check facebook one more time. Oh look! Someone liked the photo of the coffee I made. (Yesterday’s main accomplishment.) Yay!

Anyway, back to this radical idea, this pet project of mine. 

A book, damn it! 

There, I said it. No backsies. I’m going to take my thumb out and write one. By announcing it out loud it I figure that 

  • a) you dear readers can hold me accountable and,
  • b) give me some much needed feedback as I progress and, crucially,
  • c) tell me how to actually write a book.

Because I don’t have the first clue!

Anyway, I guess I should start by telling you what my radical idea for this book is. 

This tremendous book (title to be decided) will combine lessons in aviation (and life) with modern psychology (and a bit of ancient philosophy) in an attempt to help people hit the metaphorical reset button and rebuild their lives from the ground up.

The idea is to provide a roadmap for those who feel their lives have stalled – who feel lost and unsure about what direction to take – who feel overwhelmed and burnout out. (So yes, me.) It’s going to talk them through the stall recovery. The need to come back to earth in order to gain some much needed clarity and perspective. But also to regain the energy and lift needed to maintain a sustainable climb over the long haul. (Of course all of this will play to my strengths: long extended aviation metaphors.)

It will be broken down, roughly, into four parts. 

  • Section 1 will be entitled Grounded.
  • Section 2 will be entitled Lift.
  • Section 3 will be entitled Turbulence.
  • Section 4 will be entitled Moral Compass.

Sections 3 and 4 will expand upon 1 and 2 respectively. A kind of beginners section and command section. This will possibly be spilt into two books (or a series of mini books). Anyway, this is just me spitballing – the basic idea I have in mind – all to be expanded upon in due time dear readers. 

For now I just want to throw it out there and get your feedback on 

  • a) the idea itself and 
  • b) where the hell I should start? (From the ground up I suppose.)

Please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. 


You can find more of AP2’s writing here at: https://clear-air-turbulence.com

You can also find him on Medium at: https://anxiouspilot2.medium.com

You can also email him directly at: anxiouspilot2@gmail.com

57 thoughts on “A Radical Idea. (I’m Going To Write a Book.)

  1. Hi AP2,

    Well, it’s about time! Geez–I mean, sometimes the author is the last one to “know!” I’m so looking forward to reading your book! Signed copy, please. 🙏

    1. Hey Art! You’re right. I guess I’ve known for a while but kept putting
      it off. I’ll put you down for 10 signed copies 😉

  2. I think the metaphore is incredibly original. Your book is well structured and stays true to the theme of aviation which is harder to do than it seems. I don’t know whether you have experience in aviation but if you don’t I’d recommend some research. It’s the little details that show you know your topic that make the difference. Maybe a particular detail like pilots having different meals can demonstrate that in life you should have more than one thing going on. But hey, it is your book but its foundations sound rock solid to me.

    1. I’ve been a commercial pilot for over 12 years. That would be the expertise I’m selling. I’m obsessed with psychology so have many ideas for connecting the dots. But it’s the psychology/philosophy side that will require the most research for me. I’m really pleased you like the idea Pieter. Thank you for the great advice 🙏

  3. I like the idea David! My first suggestion would be about the four sections. While the titles of the first three come from the aviation jargon (at least it’s what seems to me), the fourth one has nothing to do. Using the aviation jargon is really good, because you will differentiate yourself from the others. Moreover you are an expert about it, therefore why don’t you align the fourth section title to the other three?

    1. Great advice. I was thinking the word compass (navigation) was related but I can see how the connection is missed. I’ll have a think on a better title for section 4. Thank you Cristiana. Invaluable advice. 🙂🙏

      1. Yes. Believe it or not the magnetic compass is still a primary navigation aid on most light aircraft. Even the most modern aircraft have one in case of an electrical failure. We do it use to cross check certain instruments. My thinking was that a moral compass is a kind of internal value based guidance system.

      2. Yeah – I’m now thinking I might change the title for the forth section to Landing. A way to it bring all home if you will. That way all four sub titles are strictly aviation terms. What do you think?

  4. Well AP (let’s please change that to ‘AmazedPilot’ or ‘AwesomePilot’ to reflect your newfound cajones! :-D), it seems to me you have already started your book? You have it thought out and organised, so now all you have to do is write, write, write…right?
    I urge you to dive in, and not noodle it to death along the way; plenty of time for editing later. Also, this is a/the First book, not the only book. Doesn’t matter if somehow it doesn’t work out whatever way you want it to, just finish it and keep going. Same with the second, third, fourth… you see? It’s a journal and a journey in one. Best of all possible luck to you!

    1. Thank you kj. Lots of great advice. I’ve already started yes. Although much research and details to sort through. Is it best to do research up front and then just write and write or research as you go? Not sure. Noodling it to death is my curse. I’ll need to be careful not scratch the editing itch too soon. You’re right this is the first. I’m kind of looking at each section as a mini book in their own right – smaller bite sized chunks to take on instead of trying to chew off more than I can handle. As for future books, let’s see how this one goes first. 😬 Thank you for the well wishes/advice. Much appreciated 🙏🙂

  5. Cheers and get busy…and off social media – LOL! I enjoyed ALL the bits of humor about our mutual, daily distractions and detours. Hilarious…but when you wrote this in your summary/book proposal thoughts…oh, golly. You’ve got me. Are you done yet? Hurry up already — this will be good stuff!

    “It’s going to talk them through the stall recovery. The need to come back to earth in order to gain some much needed clarity and perspective. But also to regain the energy and lift needed to maintain a sustainable climb over the long haul.”

    Stall recovery? Yes, and yes. My two cents? Don’t worry about the how – just get those fingers in motion on a keyboard and write, write, write. 😉😉😉

  6. I had no idea how to write a book when I started my first one, except for having a strong feeling that I needed to write one. The second book followed a similar trajectory to the first, except this time I knew I could actually do it.

    Trying to write a book outline set off such terrible panic attacks, as did any other book writing method I read about, so I decided to just “wing it”, trust my gut, and just do it.

    When I started writing my first book, I was terrified of saying it out loud. I didn’t know if I had it in me, much less the capability to finish it. I started writing down my ideas in teeny-tiny notebooks. I’d just jot down phrases and ideas which came to me. Once I had filled a few notebooks, I decided I needed to start typing up the random bits I had collected.

    I really had no idea of how the book would be laid out, the chapters etc., but once I started typing up my notebooks, I saw how one phrase seemed to want to go with another, how paragraphs started to form, and how they even wanted to be reorganized.

    It was a very organic process, and as I wrote, and re-read, I’d become inspired to add more in, so gradually chapters started fleshing out.

    It’s probably not a method many people would feel comfortable using, but it allowed me to simply write and not feel I couldn’t live up to the writing standards set out by many writing teachers. It allowed me the freedom of writing and not pre-editing myself. I wasn’t worried if an idea “fit” in with a chapter, for I knew I could give the manuscript the breathing space it needed to just grow and become what it needed to be.

    I learned that it’s best to write everything down as I think of it, and then later edit and massage it into where it needs to go. My phone later replaced those notebooks, as I could use the notes app and later email to myself what I had written down, to be able to copy/paste it into my manuscript. This on-the-go approach meant that even when I was away from my laptop, I could still capture thoughts as they came to me, and not despair that I’d lose them before I got home!

    I used this method for my second book, as well as for the many posts I write and keep in draft format until I feel it is ready to launch. Hmmm… I’ll need to make a post about this since I haven’t written in quite a while about my methods I used.

    Ultimately this method may or may not work for you, it will be your journey of discovery to see what works best for you. Some authors swear by the Scrivner software, as it allows for clear chapter organization.

    Best of luck to you on this journey! Be prepared for the brain waking you up in the middle of the night to download thoughts, or even having to pull over to the side of the road to whip out the phone to jot down ideas that come up!

    Blessings on your journey!

    1. What wonderful advice Tamara. Your organic method sounds very much up my street. I do have an idea for a basic outline but I’d say that outline has come about organically based on why I’ve written already over the past couple of years. Pre editing is a curse of mine. I want perfection off the block. I’m thinking I should probably just write and get a shitty first draft done and then go back over and over and over and flesh it out as you say. I also capture random thoughts and ideas in my phone. I’ve started using ROAM which I love. I feel it helps me connects the dots better.

      You should definitely write a post about this. I’d love to read it. Thank you for all the advice and words of encouragement. My brain already wakes me up in the middle of night. Often I have a brain wave at random times and run off to jot it down.

      Wishing you well 🙏

      1. Lol! Yes, I see you’re living this method too! To write a book is to live through the whole process! Yes, part of the process of writing EVERY SINGLE BOOK is to allow ourselves to be the beginner! Even if we have written one or even multiple books, giving ourselves permission to become the beginner each time will allow the writing to be authentic and fresh, instead of stilted, as often happens when we’re trying too hard to be perfect! It’s OK to be imperfect!

        I did write that post, so I hope you’ll have a chance to visit to see what you inspired!

  7. I have never written a book but it seems to me you have a clear outline ready and should make a good journey along your path. Good luck with the writing. I look forward to progress reports and reading the final masterpiece

  8. Yay – love this idea! Can’t wait to read it, AP2. Your writing and your airplane metaphors are amazing.

    So, my two cents is to start writing. There may be times you are grounded because of weather or need to be diverted to a closer airport, but put your fingers to the keyboard and start flying! 🙂 <3

    1. Thank you Wynne. Glad you like the idea. I’ve already started writing and outlining the major sections. I have loads of ideas to make this happen. Just need to take it one word at a time and not get ahead of myself. 🙏

  9. It takes great courage to name it, own it and move forward. Sometimes, winging it is necessary before a book takes flight, if you’ll pardon the pun. I like the way you break down the sections.

    1. Love the pun. I figure breaking it down gives me a series of mini bite sized sections to chew off as the climb the mountain. Thank you for your kind words 🙏

  10. It sure sounds like something I’d like to read, being the expert in stallism that I am. The place to start is at the beginning—if you can find it. If not, then just sit yourself down in front of a keyboard and start typing. Somewhere the beginning will reveal itself and you’ll be amazed. Type type type. Can’t wait to see what emerges!

    1. Thank you Julia. I think my biggest mistake when writing is pre-editing. Type type type and don’t look back sounds like great advice. I’m excited to get stuck in 🙏

  11. I tend to pre-edit too, but I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing. I see it as a kind of brain-rest-percolating time when new and better stuff can sneak in while I’m looking the other way.

  12. I think one way to start, AP2, would be drafting different ideas you want to include separately, without needing to know exactly which part of the book each will go into or in what order.

    1. Thanks Seeker. I have many ideas already. I’ve stated putting together a rough outline. I’m sure I’ll move the pieces of the puzzle around a lot as I go. Thanks for the great advice 🙏

  13. Get up and go! I started a novella once and it made it to page 5 and then life took over again. If you have the time and the luxury of quiet I say hit the ground running and don’t look back. Get yourself gallons of coffee and just go🤓. Write till your fingers can’t take anymore. Good Lucy.

    1. Thanks Joseph. Life makes any major endeavour tricky. I’m going to commit to writing everyday and not pressure myself to write x y or z amount. Good lucy and lots of coffee I will need. 🙏

  14. Not to be a rain cloud, but I’m definitely going to go against the tide here.
    Don’t do this.
    There are already enough people who think they have an idea and who feel they have the right to inflict their words on humanity in general.

    So keep writing a good blog but for the love of Pete, don’t inflict another book on the world.

    Just my 2cents as a reader. Cheers…

    1. Interesting perspective. I tend to think the issue isn’t that people want to express their opinion. It’s that other people want to silence them. Good people become too scared to say what they believe is right. I strongly believe in freedom of speech and expression – right or wrong. I’d much rather people had the difficult conversation instead of stewing in silence. Of all the worlds problems I really don’t believe too many books is one of them. But thank you for sharing your two cents worth 🙏

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