“What I’d like to see from you is a book on retirement,” the head editor from Moody Press said to me.
Okay, I immediately had conflicting thoughts about that suggestion:
On the one side, I had worked with the editor before, and I really like her. And I loved the idea of getting an inside track on an idea about which she was already excited. But on the other hand, I knew nothing about retirement. I wasn’t even retired. And, as a full-time writer and speaker, I didn’t expect to be for a long, long time.
I didn’t tell the editor “no,” but I didn’t exactly tell her “yes,” either. What I did was stall while I considered possible angles.
Then I heard about a group called the Finishers Project (Finishers.org ). They billed themselves as a tech-savvy organization dedicated to providing the baby boomer generation with everything needed to find new careers of eternal significance. Sort of an eHarmony.com for retirees who wanted to help change the world.
Wow! Now there was something I could go with!
Why did I write The Second-Half Adventure: Don’t Just Retire—Use Your Time, Skills & Resources to Change the World? Not because I really liked the editor—though I really did. Not because I loved the idea of getting an inside track on an idea she was already excited about—though that was pretty great, too. I wrote the book because I now had something of value to say.
“If we boomers decide to use our retirement to change the world, rather than our golf game, our dodder-dom will have consequences for society every bit as profound as our youth did,” New York Times Op-Ed columnist Nicholas D. Kristof wrote.
I could not agree more.
An assigned book on retirement by an unretired writer would undoubtedly have had some good ideas and a well-turned phrase or two. But a book written in conjunction with a group who is blazing fresh trails in redesigning retirement, pulling in the first-hand stories of over thirty people already walking the path—now that’s a book worth reading!
Kay Marshall Strom is the author of thirty-six published books, including her most recent, The Second-Half Adventure: Don’t Just Retire-Use Your Time, Skills & Resources to Change the World. Her writing credits also include magazine articles, short stories, prize-winning screenplays, booklets for writers, and anything else that will help make the house payments. Kay is an in-demand speaker at events throughout the country. She and her husband Dan Kline love to travel, so Kay encourages writing and speaking assignments in far- flung corners of the globe. To find out more about Kay, or for contact information, check her website at www.kaystrom.com.