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Career Renegade: How to Make a Great Living Doing What You Love Paperback – January 13, 2009

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

For all the corporate drones who feel drained and devalued by their jobs and long to pursue their passions, Fields, a high-powered attorney turned successful entrepreneur, offers a motivational and practical guide to starting your own business. The author tells his own story of corporate disillusionment and physical deterioration (capped by a stress-exacerbated heart attack, which he interpreted as his body literally rejecting his career) to a new life as a fitness entrepreneur. Fields moves beyond self-help rhetoric to proffer helpful, no-nonsense steps for aspiring business owners, acknowledging that career renegades must not only identify their own secret passion but must also translate it into a profitable and sustainable enterprise. In addition to sharing inspirational career renegade cases studies, such as Liv's Story, in which a frustrated artist discovers a profitable niche decorating custom cakes, Fields provides pragmatic strategies for creating a realistic business plan, exploiting technology and employing affordable guerilla marketing. While the author does not spend much time addressing the financial risks, chances of failure or enormous commitment of personal energy and resources involved in entrepreneurship, he does provide an engaging firsthand look at the rewards in doing what you love for a living. (Jan.)
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From Booklist

Renegade in the title is appropriate, especially if readers are searching for a traditional career guide, which this is not. Instead, former high-powered New York City lawyer turned serial entrepreneur Fields leans heavily on the 75 percent of employees who are dissatisfied with their jobs. The first part involves discovering one’s secret passion, via a few exercises. What makes the journey with this author worthwhile are his sections on determining the exact work path (yes, via research on the Internet) and on developing a business. The references and ideas will inspire; he also interviews quite a few renewed careerists, whether it’s the tale of the young mother who started the Young Rembrandts franchise or an artist who found her passion in creating edible art through her family-owned Rivera Bakehouse. Part 3 zeroes in on honing online knowledge and creating an authority figure, via such social networks as MySpace or through blogging and word of mouth. --Barbara Jacobs

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Crown Business (January 13, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0767927419
  • ISBN-13: 978-0767927413
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (67 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #561,176 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

56 of 62 people found the following review helpful By John Chancellor TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 16, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There are three major benefits that you will gain from reading this book.

First it will serve as a motivation to all who want to give up the rut we all call a job and move out on their own.

The second benefit is really a step by step guide about how to move out on your own. Not only does Jonathan tell you how, he gives links to hundreds of resources to help you accomplish what you want.

The third valuable benefit is the wisdom that Jonathan shares from his own experiences.

The third benefit is perhaps the most valuable. Under the wisdom he shares, there are two very valuable lessons - either of them worth the price of the book.

The first lesson is how to deal with fear. Here Jonathan gives some extremely good advice. Fear is probably the number one reason most people do not achieve their dreams. His advice is to explore and quantify the fear. Ask what are the consequences of failure, what is the worst case scenario, and examine the results. Often this will put fear in perspective. Then let go of the fear. Do this only once and let go.

Then you need to explore and quantify inaction. What are the results of doing nothing? If "staying the course is going to create a miserable future", that should be an unacceptable alternative. Once you explore and quantify inaction, let go. Again do this only once. What you focus on expands. So only examine the fear and inaction once and then move on.

Then the important part is to stimulate success daily. Again, what we focus on expands. So stimulate success daily. You do this by being clear about what you want, believing you can achieve it and taking focused action.
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32 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Ghost(Ghost(M)) on December 3, 2011
Format: Paperback
Amazon shoved this book under my nose in their recommendations, so I checked it out. On one hand, it's an "advice" book (red flag) and its page here is full of very suspicious-looking five-star reviews (another red flag). Otoh, the title sounds catchy, so I -- no, no, I didn't buy it -- I checked it out in our library (hehe).

I could barely finish it: it's hard to follow (because it's poorly written -- cogency is lacking: his thought jumps around a lot w/o easy-to-follow logical progression, at times descending into gibberish), and then it's just a lot of fluff -- his advice amounts to a lot of obvious things that would occur to anyone who'd invest a quarter hour into considering one's options (with traditional skippages in narrative over moments that look magical when not detailed, making you wonder who populates the skid row if everything is so doable).

It is also very cliched: every paragraph contains "value-laden", "remarkability", or "passion-based" this and that; horrible English and very bad style that is reminiscent of this late-night TV guy in black suit and with huge teeth who was big about fifteen-twenty years ago and whose name I forget. Usage errors. I mean, a lot of this book reads like a first draft by a not particularly literary man. Of course, the author has a website, and is some sort of self-proclaimed "career expert".

But in general, the most of this book is very superficial advice on how to use "social media" in order to inflate yourself into some sort of "expert" or "maven" (I'm sure you noticed that 99% of "social-media" content is horse manure energetically churned by self-proclaimed experts out to shove something down your throat that you don't need -- and advice on how to join the ranks of these hacks is not what I was looking for).
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Short Young Thing on August 21, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book offered some encouraging stories of entrepreneurs who were able to "make a living doing what they love." The author provided some resources to help the reader determine if his business idea is viable. Unfortunately, I was expecting more practical advice. After skimming through the first eight chapters, the book became quite boring. It talked too much about blogging and other Internet businesses which is not my area of interest.

Another reviewer said that the author didn't seem down to earth, and I agree. He seemed out of touch. He's making millions by doing what he loves, which is great for him, but not realistic for me.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Mario Sanchez Carrion on January 16, 2009
Format: Paperback
If you've ever wondered how you can turn your passion into a business, this book is probably the best place to look for answers. The author, who left a career in law years ago to pursue his dreams as an entrepreneur, describes in great detail seven often overlooked ways to make money doing what you love.

He starts by explaining how each particular strategy can work for you, and follows through with real life examples and a list of resources for you to dig deeper on your own. Then, he continues to guide us through the process of marketing our dream, the basics of Internet marketing, and how to use blogs and social media to make our mark in the world and gain influence.

Perhaps the passage of the book that I liked the most is when the author talks about conventional wisdom, and how it gets in the way of identifying opportunity. Learning to defy conventional wisdom (or what others may call "thinking out of the box") is the best way to discover niches that nobody is addressing and that you can turn into a business.

With that frame of mind and the practical tips in this book, you shouldn't have any problem finding work that is at the same time lucrative and fulfilling.
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