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Running Down a Dream

by Tim Grahl

A Deeply Personal Field Guide to Defeating Your Own Worst Enemy

When you dream, you envision a magical future. You have heroically slayed the dragons and unlocked the creativity and genius buried deep inside.

But how do you actually get there?

You can analyze the myths of visionary creators–artists, writers, musicians, software developers, etc that have accomplished the impossible.  You’ll read about how they went for it, refused to quit, and would not be denied. But exactly how these successful creators went from being fearful dreamers to accomplished artists proves elusive. They seem to have secret sauce inside that you just don’t possess.

Running Down a Dream unflinchingly bares the naked truth behind all creations and shares the practical to-do list to take you from here to there.

The good news?  You don’t have to be an Austen or a Michelangelo or an Oprah to create a work of art.

The bad news? There is no glossing over the pain, embarrassment, and financial terror necessary to contend with on your journey to mission accomplished.

More good news? What lies ahead for you is the realization of your heroic self. The run is worth it in ways you can’t yet imagine.


New York Times bestselling author of Ego is the Enemy and The Obstacle is the Way

Ryan Holiday

Running Down a Dream is a book about how to do the thing most people want to do but tell themselves is too scary, too hard, too unlikely. Tim Grahl is not some once-in-a-million-years genius. He’s an ordinary person who has managed to do what most ordinary people think is impossible. That’s why you should listen to him.”


New York Times bestselling author of The War of Art

Steven Pressfield

“Full disclosure: Tim Grahl is my own secret guru for exactly the stuff that Running Down a Dream is about. My own book, The War of Art, was about the concept of self-sabotage as it afflicts us as writers and artists struggling to be our best professional selves. Tim’s book is the workingman’s tool-belt. His gift is to show us in nuts-and-bolts, no-nonsense terms exactly how to navigate this crazy life and how to actually Get Our Stuff Done. Indispensable!”


Founder of CD Baby, frequent TED speaker, and author of Anything Your Want

Derek Sivers

“What does it really look like to succeed? Slow, painful, terrified, stumbling, humble, and persistent. Tim’s amazingly vulnerable story convinces you you’re not alone in your struggle, and shows a path through it.”


Founder of The Corcoran Group, author, and Shark Tank investor

Barbara Corcoran

“What I love about this book is that Tim tells the truth. He not only shares his wins as he pursued his dream, but also his devastating failures. Everybody faces challenges when starting something new and this book is the secret sauce in overcoming them.”


New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of When and Drive

Daniel H. Pink

"I’ve known Tim for a decade, but I had no idea what a skilled storyteller he was. In Running Down a Dream, he shatters the mold of a typical self-help book by offering a fresh perspective — and an array of life-changing advice — on creativity, success, and happiness.”

Listen to an Excerpt


Order signed copies from Tim's local bookstore, Parnassus Books.

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