For me it was getting the thoughts that I had in my head down on a piece of paper. When I would sit down to write it would take a while before the words came to me. Once they starting flowing the writing process became much easier and more fluent.
Can you give a short synopsis of “10 Bits of Wisdom from the Shoe Shine Guy”?
The book is about a life changing experience that I had with God and how I started to look much differently at what was truly important in life. It lays out the 10 principles or characteristics that have always been important to me but how they changed somewhat in their meaning after accepting Christ into my life.
What inspired you to write this book?
I have always enjoyed writing and began a blog about three years ago. The blog was well received and more and more people over time had mentioned that I should write a book. What finally pushed me to take that next step and actually write a book was a phone call that I received from Waldorf Publishing late last year. As I tend to be a procrastinator by nature, that phone call was the push that I needed to get serious about writing the book. My ultimate inspiration though was God. I would not have been able to do any of this or even had the inspiration to begin with had it not been for my faith Jesus Christ. One of the first passages from scripture that I learned was from Philippians 4:13 –“ I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.”
How many hours per day do you spend writing?
When I was actually writing the book I would spend 2-4 hours per day writing during the week and 4-6 hours per day on the weekends. I am The Shoe Shine Guy and spend the majority of my work day out on the road shining shoes for people. I continue to write the blog and usually put out a post every 4-6 weeks or so. When I do that I will write the blog in 2-4 hours.
Name your top 5 favorite books
When the Game is Over it all Goes Back in the Box – John Ortberg
How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective people – Steven Covey
The Five Dysfunctions of a Team – Patrick Lencioni
I also love to read biographies on historical figures (John Adams, Franklin Roosevelt, Theodore Roosevelt, Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, Abraham Lincoln and many more)
What are you working on now?
Writing this book was a new experience for me and I am taking it all in. I am talking to so many people who have been able to read the book and are sharing their experiences and some of the hurts and pains that they went through in their lives as well. I have thought about the idea of writing another book but really want to see how this whole experience plays out and God will let me know then what He has in store for me. Until then I will continue to write my blog posts.
Title: 10 Bits of Wisdom from the Shoe Shine Guy
Author: John Early
Genre: Spiritual / Inspirational
John Early worked in the corporate world for over 25 years. From the outside looking in, it seemed as though he had it all: the beautiful family, the magnificent home, the nice cars and great vacations, the fabulous income with the big 401k. He had what most would consider the American Dream. This was John’s idea of a dream, and this dream was all about him. Then suddenly, in an instant, like the Apostle Paul on the road to Damascus, John had an encounter with God that transformed his life forever. John takes the reader through that transformation and the total impact it had on not only his life, but on the lives of those around him, especially those closest to him-his wife and children. He lays out the 10 key bits of wisdom that were instrumental in reconciling and rebuilding those broken relationships. His road on this journey is paved with: Knowing your purpose, Character, Attitude, Goals, Teamwork and Trust, Respect, Courage, Regrets, Reconciliation, and Grace. This book shows all of us, no matter our circumstances or how dark our days may seem, that God is brighter still. Let God start to transform your life.
John moved to Houston, Texas in 1980 at the age of 21. He worked in sales for a manufacturers rep firm selling oil equipment. Sales territory was most of South Texas, driving 4000-5000 miles per month. John had the opportunity to call on customers that were located in remote areas of South Texas as well as the corporate offices of some of the largest oil and gas companies in the world located Houston, Texas.
In 1986 he moved back to Michigan and went to work as a mortgage consultant for a small mortgage company, Tranex Financial and worked there for 13 years. Starting out as a mortgage consultant he moved into training then became an officer of the company and eventually bought the firm. In 1998, he merged Tranex into the Hantz Financial Group.
He worked with Hantz Financial as a Vice President and financial consultant until December of 2010 focusing on marketing and client relationships. His team assisted high net worth clients with their tax planning, estate planning, investment strategies and business owner concerns. Providing advice to clients who needed sophisticated financial planning. While at Hantz Financial the company grew from 100 employees to over 500 and John was able to help build one of the largest practices within the firm.
In April of 2011 he created The Shoe Shine Guys. A mobile shoe shine service that started with an idea, one truck and a handful of clients. He now has three vehicles, a full service cobbler store and hundreds of clients. His company continues to add new clients every month and receive calls at least once a quarter about expanding to other parts of the country.
John attended Saginaw Valley State University. He has been married to his beautiful wife, Janet, for more than 32 years and they have two grown children, a son in law, and a grandson.
A sports enthusiast, John was an avid handball player for over 20 years (new titanium knee and work have sidelined him for a while) and was the Canadian national doubles champion in 1999.