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How I fulfilled my dream

Today’s column is dedicated to Stella Wilner, my first-grade teacher who always believed in my ability to write. Her encouragement, combined with luck, time and practice, eventually led to this column.

For years I dreamed of seeing my name on a bookstore shelf, resulting in “Removing the Mystery From Marketing” (1999) and “Streetwise Internet Business Plan” (2001).

What a thrill walking into Barnes & Noble and watching strangers buying my book!

Then there’s Rancho Bernardo’s Oscar Teel, who repeatedly asked me when I would sell a book of my columns.

The idea struck me as absurd. Why would anyone buy my book when they can find my columns online?

Oscar persevered. Others started asking. I felt a ripple in the force.

Until the day I met a book agent who liked what she saw. Before you could say, “Bob’s your uncle,” I found myself in serious conversations about turning 800-plus columns into a series of books.

That’s why you can now find “5 Minutes to Better Branding” on Amazon, Apple and elsewhere. Today it’s an ebook, and soon (courtesy of Write Away Books), you’ll see it in print.

In a single location, you’ll have instant access to dozens of the best branding columns I’ve ever written. I’m not sure how much that’s saying, but there we are.

And, as they used to say at MAD magazine, they’ll be ready for immediate use, misuse or abuse.

Though this is hardly earth-shattering news, I’m excited about it, and Mom always taught me to share.

Besides, there’s a good lesson here about not forgetting your dreams.

Admittedly, I don’t know where this could all lead. Maybe you’ll find me speaking at conferences or hawking my books at your local Rotary club.

And there’s always the possibility of Brad Pitt playing me in the movie, of course.

Hey…it’s my fantasy!

As kids we all had crazy career daydreams. Firefighter, astronaut, athlete, dancer, singer. Mine was being a writer.

Too many of us relinquished our dreams out of fear or inertia.

So, in addition to my good news, and in the spirit of the holidays, I encourage you to re-energize your childhood dreams. Because there’s nothing more satisfying than being able to say:

“Thank you, Mrs. Wilner…I never could have accomplished this without you.”

With that said, I wish you a week of profitable marketing.

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