My name is Stan R. Mitchell and I’m a full-time, action-fiction author with books similar to Vince Flynn, Stephen Hunter, and Tom Clancy. I’m also a prior infantry Marine with Combat Action Ribbon, and a guy who spent 10+ years writing every day in the newspaper business.
Here’s my life in a nutshell:
I left for the Marine Corps at 17, demanding to be infantry and insisting my recruiter guarantee it in writing. This insistence paid off as I had an amazing four years in the infantry, even getting to serve with Force Recon and earning a Combat Action Ribbon as part of Operation Silver Wake in 1997. (The details on my military career.)
I served four years in the Corps and earned the rank of Sergeant before pursuing my love of writing by earning a journalism degree at the University of Tennessee. After graduation, I wrote my butt off as a reporter for a few years before launching a weekly newspaper at the age of 27. With just $20,000… (Turns out, I needed $250,000, so I spent much of my nine years as a newspaper publisher/entrepreneur struggling mightily financially. I scrambled for loans, for investors, and for ways to repay everyone that I owed money.)
My run as an entrepreneur for those nine years was brutal, but I learned a ton and exerted myself at levels only possible under absolute desperation. (More info on what it’s like to own and run a newspaper here.)
These days, I’m writing full-time, with my sights set for the very top of the fiction world. (Yes, I’m ambitious, and yes, I have small man’s syndrome. Thanks for asking!)
I’ve been writing stories since I was nine or ten, but of those 30+ in various stages, only four are worth reading. Learn more about those four here.
When I’m not writing, I’m usually reading or practicing martial arts. But I also like to fish, shoot, and play tennis.
You can see my novels and a longer bio about my service in the Marine Corps on Amazon at http://amzn.to/1brrc37.
Need to contact me? Please e-mail me at the following address.
Don’t forget, if you’re interested, please consider joining our small community and subscribing for email updates of my blog posts. (This site is non-political and I mostly post about things that either motivate you, inspire you, or make you laugh.)
Keep the faith,
Stan R. Mitchell
Oak Ridge, Tenn.
P.S. Some have asked, “Stan, what in the world gives you such an insane drive? What makes you so crazy?”
Well, part of it is growing up without much money.
And part of it is a belief that if you’re plowing five acres, but can plow ten, then you ought to get your ass back out there and plow those other five.
To not do so is cheating yourself, your family, your community.
I have been fortunate to have had many good mentors and examples to follow. And I have consistently sought out even greater examples, both in the Marines and in the hundreds of biographies and self-help books that I have read.
So with that, let me pay it forward and see if I can share some wisdom and motivation, in the hopes that it might help you as I’ve been helped.
The following quotes come from Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai:
- “Even if you begin without talent, you can become great if you imitate a good model and put forth enormous effort.”
- “Emulate the best behaviors of those around you.”
- “In military affairs, a man must always strive to outstrip others.” <— I’m applying this to fiction writing, but you should apply it to whatever you are doing.
- “In the stories of the elder warriors, it is said that on the battlefield, if one wills himself to outstrip warriors of accomplishment, and day and night hopes to strike down a powerful enemy, he will grow indefatigable and fierce of heart and manifest courage. One should use this principle in everyday affairs, too.”
- “It is spiritless to think that you cannot attain what you have seen and heard others attain. The masters are men. You are also a man. If you think you will be inferior, then you are well on your way.”
And the following quotes are from The Shaolin Workout: 28 Days to Transforming Your Body and Soul the Warrior’s Way. I highly recommend this book, as it’s without question one of the greatest books I’ve ever received.
- “You create your own life. You make it heaven or hell. Destiny is not something that happens to you. You make your own destiny.”
- “Getting your body and mind right can affect your whole life.”
- “Nothing is difficult or easy in itself. We make it difficult or easy with our attitude. If you don’t want to do it, then nothing is easy.”
- “Strong body, strong mind. Weak body, weak mind.”
- “A foolish person wishes for good things to happen to them, but fortune, success, and happiness rarely just fall in your lap. You must grasp your life and sharpen it.”
- “Confidence is the most important key to success in all areas of your life. Believe in yourself. Trust in yourself. If you lack self-confidence, you can’t get the job done.”
Inspired, I hope? Then read this: Find true happiness: announce your dreams to the world today.
And if you dig the martial arts, come join me at my martial arts site, where I explore martial arts, physical fitness, and everything that goes with Eastern philosophy — meditation, living in the moment, and mindfulness, as well as plenty of great stories from the East that share some great wisdom.
Or if you’re a jarhead, come join me at Marine Watch, where I post about American foreign policy, national security, and all things Marine Corps.