My husband and I have a good friend named Ed. Because both of our parents are gone, and Ed is close to the age my in-laws would be, we occasionally have fatherly conversations with him. This father of six, grandfather of 24 and great-grandfather to 24 has a lot of experience with these types of conversations.
The other night when we were talking to Ed, WALK! Magazine came up in conversation. After explaining how hard I had worked, etc., and how sad I was that I had to fold it, he turned to me and said, "Do it again."
I was stunned. Did he not hear what I had told him? Didn't he understand? I said, "I can't because..." and gave him a long list of reasons why I could not possibly restart WALK! Magazine. He repeated, "Do it again." I started to repeat my list and he stopped me.
"Do you have any idea how many times I have failed? I have failed A LOT! And after each failure I would figure out what I did wrong and do it better the next time." He talked about how he could have gone the easy route and worked for a big company like so many of his friends. Yes, they made lots of money, but they worked long hours and never got to see their families. And basically, though he made less money than his friends, he made more than enough and he felt he had a happier life.
After his story of failure and success, he said, "You know what you did wrong. Do it better."
Many of you former subscribers to WALK! Magazine know me and know how hard the folding of the magazine was for me. It has been two years and I have tried very hard to let the idea go, but I can't. The truth is, I LOVED publishing the magazine! It was the best thing I have ever done, it was some of my best writing ever. I met some great people -- subscribers, athletes, race directors and average walkers like me. I received help from so many people who volunteered to write, who occasionally paid my hotel bill, who traveled with me to keep me company, stood in my booth for hours or just listened to my every idea or vent.
I also missed a lot of sleep as I worked 80 hours a week for 4 years, and I incurred a "little" bit of debt, but I still loved it.
So now, taking my friend Ed's advice, I hope to "Do it better."
Right now, I can't do another print publication. I don't know if I ever will. But, I can gather great information about walkers, health and fitness, nutrition and more. And I can write about people who are interesting, great places to walk, fitness products... And I can find new, maybe better, ways of connecting with other walkers.
I hope all of you will join me as I try to follow Ed's advice.
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