Bestselling Author James Patterson Shares His Advice for Entrepreneurs: ‘Build a Business You Never Want to Retire From’

I interviewed Patterson about his new book, 'The Defense Lawyer,' and heard his thoughts on life, writing, business and chasing your dreams

By | Kimanzi Constable |

There’s a certain mystique surrounding the idea of being a writer who publishes bestselling books. You’ve no doubt read a book that pulled you in emotionally, simulated your mind and inspired you to take action. It might have even made you think about becoming a writer yourself. 

James Patterson is a writer whose success can be traced to his Alex Cross series of novels, but his career and work are expansive. He’s a Guinness World Record holder as the first author to sell more than one million ebooks, and his books have sold over 300 million copies since the first one was published in 1976. 

I got the opportunity to interview Patterson about his new book, The Defense Lawyer, and hear his thoughts on life, writing, business and chasing your dreams. 

James Patterson’s new book is about the story of legendary attorney Barry Slotnick. I also got to interview Stuart Slotnick and hear firsthand how his father represented mob bosses, celebrities, casino magnates, won cases in the U.S. Supreme Court and even negotiated former First Lady Melania Trump’s prenup.

Over the course of my interviews with Patterson and Slotnick, a common thread emerged: the importance of building a business you’re passionate about — so much so that the hard work doesn’t wear you down and discourage you from pushing forward. Perhaps now more than ever before, it’s time for entrepreneurs to stop chasing success for the sake of it and identify what fulfilling business pursuits actually look like for them. 

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