2015 in Review: Books Read, Goals

Overall, I’m pretty happy with my 2015 writing performance, though there is a lot of room for improvement. I published three novels and made progress on my fifth novel, which stands at over 120,000 words… while holding down a full-time job in the technology sector (software development). I believe my writing has evolved quite a bit since I wrote my first book, Stormcaller and can only hope it continues to improve in the future.

I had a couple fitness goals and glad to say I hit one and came pretty damn close to hitting the other. The first was a 500lb deadlift and I managed to pull 505lb. The second was a 300lb bench press, but I couldn’t seem to get past 295lb. I have a great coach who designed a fantastic program for me to hit these goals. He was a former Strongman competitor and has 20+ years of experience weightlifting, so I have to give him a lot of credit for helping me achieve that. I’m going to take a break from serious weight lifting and go back to martial arts, starting with Brazilian jiu-jitsu specifically.

Another goal I had was to get Scuba diving certified and am quite pleased that my girlfriend and I got that. If you had any interest in learning how to Scuba dive, I highly suggest doing it. It’s an incredible world down there. I thought at one pointed I wanted to purchase a semi-automatic handgun, but now I’m not so sure. I had it as a goal, and sort of lost interest as the year progressed.

My Top 3 Books of 2015

  1. Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets (Incerto) Nassim Nicholas Taleb
  2. Hannibal and Me: What History’s Greatest Military Strategist Can Teach Us About Success and Failure Andreas Kluth
  3. A Short History of Nearly Everything Bill Bryson

What were your favorite books from last year?

Books Read (in the order they were read): I had a goal of 100, but going to give it another shot next year.

  1. Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets (Incerto) Nassim Nicholas Taleb
  2. The Magnesium Miracle (Revised and Updated) Carolyn Dean Md Nd
  3. Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story Arnold Schwarzenegger
  4. Crucial Conversations Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan and Al Switzler
  5. Thinking, Fast and Slow Daniel Kahneman
  6. Mistborn: The Final Empire Brandon Sanderson
  7. Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr Ron Chernow
  8. Creating Character: Bringing Your Story to Life (Red Sneaker Writers Book Series 2) William Bernhardt
  9. Starting Strength Mark Rippetoe
  10. 50 Fitness Tips You Wish You Knew: The Best Quick and Easy Ways to Increase Motivation, Lose Weight, Get In Shape, and Stay Healthy Derek Doepker
  11. Attached: The New Science of Adult Attachment and How It Can Help You Find-and Keep-Love Amir Levine, Rachel Heller
  12. Writing Fight Scenes (Writer’s Craft Book 1) Rayne Hall
  13. Understanding Variation: The Key to Managing Chaos Donald J. Wheeler
  14. The Hero with a Thousand Faces (The Collected Works of Joseph Campbell) Joseph Campbell
  15. The Artist’s Way Julia Cameron
  16. Boys Adrift: The Five Factors Driving the Growing Epidemic of Unmotivated Boys and Underachieving Young Men Leonard Sax
  17. Gardens of the Moon: Book One of The Malazan Book of the Fallen Steven Erikson
  18. Before They Are Hanged: The First Law: Book Two Joe Abercrombie
  19. Beyond Religion: Ethics for a Whole World H.H. Dalai Lama
  20. The Bulletproof Diet: Lose up to a Pound a Day, Reclaim Energy and Focus, Upgrade Your Life Dave Asprey
  21. The Bed of Procrustes: Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms (Incerto) Nassim Nicholas Taleb
  22. Last Argument of Kings (First Law: Book Three) Joe Abercrombie
  23. A People’s History of the United States Howard Zinn
  24. 37 Quickfire Lesson In Trading Options: 10 Years of Trading Experience Compacted Into Easy to Digest Lessons Gavin McMaster
  25. Calming Your Anxious Mind: How Mindfulness and Compassion Can Free You from Anxiety, Fear, and Panic Jeffrey Brantley MD DFAPA
  26. Letters from a Stoic: Epistulae Morales AD Lucilium Lucius Annaeus Seneca
  27. The Evolution of God Robert Wright
  28. Red Country Joe Abercrombie
  29. The Honest Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone–Especially Ourselves Dan Ariely
  30. The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More Chris Anderson
  31. Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking Susan Cain
  32. The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources of Love, Character, and Achievement David Brooks
  33. How to Win at the Sport of Business: If I Can Do It, You Can Do It Mark Cuban
  34. The Post-American World Fareed Zakaria
  35. The Art of Learning: An Inner Journey to Optimal Performance Josh Waitzkin
  36. Best Served Cold Joe Abercrombie
  37. Mitosis Brandon Sanderson
  38. Managing Oneself Peter Drucker
  39. As a Man Thinketh James Allen
  40. Attack of the Theocrats! How the Religious Right Harms Us All- —and What We Can Do About It Sean Faircloth
  41. 101 Ways to Transform Your Life Wayne Dyer
  42. Legion: Skin Deep Brandon Sanderson
  43. Capital in the Twenty-First Century Thomas Piketty
  44. On Being a Man David DeAngelo
  45. Do the Work: Overcome Resistance and Get Out of Your Own Way Steven Pressfield
  46. A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1) George R. R. Martin
  47. The Narrow Road: A Brief Guide to the Getting of Money Felix Dennis
  48. The Entrepreneur’s Guide To Getting Your Shit Together John Carlton
  49. The Heroes Joe Abercrombie
  50. Writing Naked Puts: The Best Option Strategies. Volume 1 Mark D Wolfinger
  51. Slaughterhouse-Five Kurt Vonnegut
  52. Hannibal and Me: What History’s Greatest Military Strategist Can Teach Us About Success and Failure Andreas Kluth
  53. Poor Charlie’s Almanack: The Wit and Wisdom of Charles T. Munger, Expanded Third Edition Charles T. Munger
  54. How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character Paul Tough
  55. How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming Mike Brown
  56. Manias, Panics and Crashes: A History of Financial Crises, Sixth Edition Charles P. Kindleberger
  57. Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t Simon Sinek
  58. Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future Ashlee Vance
  59. How to Create a Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed Ray Kurzweil
  60. Shadows for Silence in the Forests of Hell Brandon Sanderson
  61. The Kick-Ass Writer: 1001 Ways to Write Great Fiction, Get Published, and Earn Your Audience Chuck Wendig
  62. Revival Stephen King
  63. Smartcuts: How Hackers, Innovators, and Icons Accelerate Success Shane Snow
  64. The Art of Asking: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help Amanda Palmer
  65. The Fish That Ate the Whale: The Life and Times of America’s Banana King Rich Cohen
  66. The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon Brad Stone
  67. Benjamin Franklin: An American Life Walter Isaacson
  68. Unnatural Creatures: Stories Selected by Neil Gaiman Neil Gaiman
  69. The Upside of Irrationality: The Unexpected Benefits of Defying Logic Dan Ariely
  70. Warbreaker Brandon Sanderson
  71. The Virgin Way: If It’s Not Fun, It’s Not Worth Doing Richard Branson
  72. The Way of Zen Alan W. Watts
  73. Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life Thich Nhat Hanh
  74. Why Is the Penis Shaped Like That?: And Other Reflections on Being Human Jesse Bering
  75. Virtual Light William Gibson
  76. Life 101: Everything We Wish We Had Learned about Life in School–But Didn’t (Life 101 Series) Peter McWilliams
  77. A Short History of Nearly Everything Bill Bryson
  78. Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person Shonda Rhimes
  79. 30 Days In The Word Mines Chuck Wendig
  80. Alan Turing: The Enigma Andrew Hodges
  81. The Girl With All the Gifts M. R. Carey


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