“Real artists don’t starve.” That’s what guest Jeff Goins wants to tell each and every artist around the world who is too scared to pursue their art for the fear of failing. His new book highlights fourteen rules that artists need to follow in order to survive in a world that is not always kind to them.

Who is Jeff Goins? Jeff Goins is an author, speaker, online writing coach, consultant, and the podcast host of The Portfolio Life. He has written for hundreds of magazines, publications, and blogs, including Copyblogger, Problogger, and Relevant Magazine. His own blog, goinswriter.com, has been voted one of the top ten blogs on writing. He has written five books, including the bestselling The Art of Work, and his most recent, Real Artists Don’t Starve. Before becoming a full-time author, Jeff was the Communications Director for the nonprofit Adventures in Missions, where he learned that being comfortable in a job is one of the biggest risks to following your own calling.

Jeff Goins believes that everyone has a craft that they are meant to do. In a way, we are all artists. His goal is to make sure that everyone has the tools to find that craft, the discipline to hone it, and the courage to share it with the world. He shares a few of his tips on why real artists don’t starve, and encourages each person to stop believing the myth and start creating.


“There’s a certain amount of responsibility that you have after you’ve admitted what your dream is.” — Jeff

“Activity follows identity. Before you go and do something, you have to become someone.” — Jeff

“Creating your own style is done by studying, stealing, and eventually curating everything, arranging it, and then sharing it with the world.” — Jeff

“Successful creatives are not precious about their work.” — Jeff

“Be stubborn on vision, but flexible on the details.” — Jeff

Action steps:

  • Don’t spend all your time researching, talking about, and thinking about your bold idea but never doing anything to make it happen.
  • If you fear failure, start small. You don’t have to take a leap, just a step.
  • Sometimes, it takes the people around us to tell us what is obvious. Are the people in your life telling you what you really already know deep down?
  • Don’t get overly attached to your own work. It can keep you from moving forward and having a vision for your work as a whole. It can also keep you from sharing your work with the world and allowing others to benefit from it.

Resources mentioned:

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