The Truth

An uncomfortable book about relationships by Neil Strauss

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Thanks for the intro, Erik. I'll be here at 10 a.m. PST tomorrow (Thursday). Thanks to @eriktorenberg and @tferriss for turning me on to PH. I'm up for answering any questions on anything I've done or you are trying to do. If you really want to light me up, tell me where you are stuck and I will do my best to point you in the direction of unstuck. And if you want to be real cool, add a suggestion at the end of your comment of something I NEED to own, see, read, or experience to make my life complete. EDIT: Meant to note earlier that the "Get It" button does NOT lead to a purchase page, but just to the advance Product Hunt-only excerpt referred to below. Thanks for supporting books and authors, PH!
{sits down} {deep breath} {stretches fingers} Let's do this....
@neilstrauss Hey Neil - great to have you here on PH. My Question: Has the success of 'The Game' had any negative consequences socially or professionally? Almost in the same way that an actor can become so synonymous with their TV show character, that it's hard for them to transition to new work (eg. It's not David Schwimmer on a new show or movie, all I see is Ross from friends) Has people's perceptions of you been limited or boxed in by your work as 'the pickup artist guy'? -shaan ps. the cube test has served me well in life, thank you.
@shaanvp, it's okay when something colors other's perception of you. That's something you can't control. The key is not to let other people's perception of you control your own perception of yourself!
@neilstrauss thanks for the reply. Also it's interesting that you gave me advice on dealing with something. When all I wanted to know is if it happened to you at all! :)
I read The Game when I was a confused teenager, and spent years harming my relationships with the things you described in it. What would you say differently to confused 16-year-old me if you had the chance?
@andknf, I'm sorry to hear that. I'd say that I understand, and I did the same. The Truth is my journey out to the other side. I was actually, originally going to call it Game Over. Would be curious to hear your story.
@andknf looks like you have a book to write!
@neilstrauss Good to know you found your way through that phase too. It's funny, I think I (and so many others) grabbed onto that book because I identified so clearly with *you*. I think the most pernicious stuff that kept popping up years later had to do with what happened when I'd feel vulnerable and uncertain in a relationship. The Game encouraged folks to play a game: if she isn't responding to your texts, then be more confident and cocky. Make your frame stronger, and challenge her 'shit test.' The one solid piece of data I have on that being broken is when, years after someone faded on me, I saw her by chance, and asked why. On top of all the other personal problems we were both going through, she said "you demanded that I wear a dress next time we hang out." Which, yeah. Douchey thing to do. Probably the right thing to do if you're following The Game. But no one had ever told me that if I was feeling self-conscious about where a relationship was headed, that the best thing would probably be to talk openly about it, and to share that vulnerability, even if it means that things would end. Any new thoughts on that side of things?
Neil, two questions. The first is one I think most people want to know but won't ask. The second is most general interest: 1. Why should I, as a reader, buy your book? Aside from it being very well written and enjoyable to read, what can I expect to learn, and will it help me make changes in my own life? [I know the answer to this, but I think this is the implicit question everyone asks-but-doesn't-ask to authors, so I'm making it explicit.] 2. First Aziz Anzari's book about online dating came out, then my book with Dr. Miller about how to be attractive to women comes out, then your book about what to do once you are in relationships is coming out. Do you think this is a trend, and if so, what is it and why is it here?
Way to slip your book into the question, @tuckermax. And by the way, have read the advance copy of Mate you gave me, and it is a great collaboration. Not just for dating, but really a book for a better life. (I'd summarize it for you PH'ers as "Do as Tucker Max says, not as he did.") 1. The only reason I've ever bought a book is because it's interesting. Because when I read the first page, I want to read the second. And when I read the second page, I want to read the third, etc. As for whether this book accomplishes that, you guys can be the judge of that by grabbing the free excerpt (before my publisher finds out I did this months ahead of the release date). 2. As my editors at The New York Times used to say: Three is a trend.
It's my pleasure to welcome Neil Strauss for a Live AMA! For more context: Neil Strauss is the New York Times bestselling author of The Game, Emergency, The Dirt with Motley Crue, Rules of the Game, and books with Marilyn Manson and Jenna Jameson. He is a writer for Rolling Stone, a former columnist at The New York Times, received the dubious distinction of being named best pickup artist in the world (by The Associated Press while writing The Game), and received the Presidents Volunteer Service Award (for his search-and-rescue work during Emergency). His latest full-immersion book, The Truth: An Uncomfortable Book About Relationships, comes out on October 13th. EDIT: Meant to note earlier that the "Get It" button does NOT lead to a purchase page, but just to the advance Product Hunt-only excerpt referred to below.
Hey Neil, long time no see (2 days). What is one book that taught you the most about yourself and one writer you like most when it comes to relationships? One you might like: James Salter's The Hunters. I thought there was a lot of good stuff in there about ambition, about comparing yourself to other people. PS everyone: I read The Truth. It's fantastic. My life has been very different than Neil's and I'm not attracted to most of what he talks about in the book, but somehow it's still very relatable and oddly, very hopeful and inspiring.
Hey @ryanholiday, was good seeing you. The books that teach me most about myself are the ones I'm writing. You can't hide behind your words. On paper, if you are honest, the truth comes staring back at you and you get to see yourself from the outside. It's not always a pretty picture. When it comes to relationships, I read Gabriel Garcia Marquez for the poetry of love and, for the poetry of the flip side of that, Hubert Selby. Will check out The Hunters. Thank you.