Right place at the right time

TUESDAY, 20 JANUARY 2015

In his book, Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell explains how Bill Gates and Steve Jobs were at the right place at the right time in their teenage years. Interest in computer technology, good schools, and access to computers paved the way for them to become iconic figures in the tech industry years later.

I am also to some extent fortunate regarding my writing. A few decades ago there were writers like me who also wrote material about their own lives, and about their ideas about life. Little of these people’s writing has probably been read by more than ten people, and many eventually died without much recognition.

Likewise, there are other people alive today whose lives are similar to mine, and who write about similar themes in ways that will also probably never lead to any commercial success.

Here is where my luck kicks in, my being at the right place at the right time. I have had a computer for my exclusive use continuously since 1999, with stable, fast access to the internet – a privilege I did not enjoy before I came to Taiwan. Particular conditions in Taiwan have also made it possible for me to make enough money to survive and save some for the future without having to give up more than 30 hours per week of my life. Throw in my desire to make money from home that exposed me to internet marketing, and within a few years I had acquired a critical mass of knowledge and experience in the field of self-publishing.

I can therefore afford to spend time on my writing projects, I know how to publish this material on my own websites and on a growing number of other platforms and in other formats, and I know how to distribute this material for maximum exposure.

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