Today’s interview is with Ashish Joy, an author, father, and youth pastor in Portland, Oregon. He shares his thoughts on writing (and the key to achieving a big goal), why people in general inspire him, and the best advice he’s ever received.
Name and website: Ashish Joy
Fun fact about you:
I can tell you the make and model of 90% of cars on the road by memory (random I know, but something I picked up when I was a kid)
I studied Computer Science for two years in college, before I made the switch to theology and pastoral ministry
I am a youth pastor who never thought I’d become a youth pastor. In Bible college, I was the last person you would expect to become a youth pastor.
What do you think has been essential to your success as an author?
My writing is an expression of what I do with my life. Whatever I write has to pass through me first. I write as a flawed human, changed by grace, and on the journey of continual growth. It has to be in me first, before I can preach, teach or write. My last book and even the one I’m currently working on, were birthed out of personal growth moments for me. I’m not really sure if that’s a recipe for success, but I know it lets me write with integrity and humility.
What was something that surprised you about writing?
How incredibly hard and deceptively easy it is… let me explain. When you look at a project it can seem overwhelming and gargantuan. If you stay there, you’ll probably never start anything. But then, when you look at the little pieces, and that it’s simply just you taking disciplined, focused time as often as possible, then the project doesn’t seem as hard. So writing is scary in that it can seem massive and impossible, but if you can switch your perspective, it’s also small baby steps that are very possible.
If you had to describe your latest project in 6 words or less, what would you say?
What does following Jesus look like? (a book I’m working on called Unfamiliar Territory)
Who or what inspires you?
People inspire me. I look at the obstacles and struggles that people all around me go through. The fact that people keep at it, overcome the worst life has to offer, and somehow find meaning and fulfillment. I am inspired by authentic people, who are at home in their vulnerability, but fearless in their tenacity to be more.
What is your all-time favorite bucket list item (of yours or someone else’s)?
Haha… I’d love to go sky diving, but I’m deathly afraid of heights, so not sure when this would ever happen.
If you aren’t doing anything related to writing, what are you doing in your free time?
Hanging with my family… my son Brennan is 2 years old, he’s so much fun. Play time with him is a highlight for me. We also just had baby girl. Her name is Adeline and she is so much fun.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t be so serious about life. Laugh at yourself, have fun, and be okay with pausing and enjoying life for what it is.
Readers: Join me in thanking Ashish for sharing his time, stories, and advice with us! If you want to learn more about him, check out his website, which also has his links to the usual social media sites.
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