Archive for November, 2012

For years, I’ve said “no”.

“No” to the numerous requests to author a book on trading.

Why?  Well, the reasons are multiple.

First, I’ve felt this blog has been an optimal way to get my thoughts across to the trading community on a current basis … initially in a painstaking daily and detailed manner, then in a manner which shifted focus away from me and more on trader education & motivation, and more recently via recent activism on the MF Global front.

In addition, from a pure business perspective, a decent trader can make far, far (did I say “far”?)  more profit from directing his/her energies toward trading than by writing.  Ask any author, and they’ll tell you the royalties are minimal at best, which I’ve confirmed through my own recent due diligence.

And lastly, in terms of educational goals, it’s simply impossible to teach anyone to trade via a $50 book, when it takes years of vast experience and a solid trading educational program to do so, which is why the extensive & highly-regarded Jellie program was crafted.

Oh, if it were up to my ego, I would have said yes long ago.  But as successful traders know, ego is the death knell in trading … and in life.

So for years, I’ve said no … based on what I believed was sound reason.

And then the call came from Wiley Press, the leading publisher in the financial world with a reputation for quality and reputable work with a capital “Q” and “R”.  Look for the small handful of what I would consider to be quality books among the chaff of the trading world (I can count five out of hundreds), and it’s likely Wiley was behind the work.

As publishing ideas and discussions began, I made it clear from the outset that if we did something, it would have to be done in such a way that held true to the values since I began public advocacy efforts in the late 1990′s.  Specifically, it would have to focus as much – if not more – on my failures than my successes.  For any success that God has granted me over the years has been largely rooted in the foundation of failure.

Read that last line again, and you may have unlocked several secrets to life itself!

And then the parallels began.  An opportunity to author a modern-day version of the classic “Reminiscences of a Stock Operator” … a book long regarded as the top trading book ever published, yet one that has become dated as intraday wholesale opportunities increased, technologies and market access advanced, and regulation evolved.  Plus, there’s the modern day version of Gordon Gecko, which has created a whole new verb in the trading industry – “getting Corzined” – which has added a new wrinkle to the long-running objective of ensuring the market doesn’t take your money as now we have the game of ensuring your broker doesn’t abscond with your hard-earned money.

Yet there would be one difference.  For unlike “Reminiscences”, there would be no question as to the true source of authorship and name of the trader chronicled.

On July 4, 2008, after a prolonged break from the public eye, I began this blog with the following “Out of Hiding” post:

Where does one begin after a 2 1/2 year break from the public eye?

As some of you may know, February 2006 was my last public post after years of teaching traders and writing for various trading publications & websites. Two and 1/2 years. Gas prices were a heckuva lot lower and the Celtics were pre-Garnett.

And while I had planned on remaining “off the radar” until the beginning of 2009, I want to begin sharing the revelations I’ve discovered that have taken my trading to a completely new paradigm [Here's a tease as noted in Dr. Brett Steenbarger's 6/7/08 post], as well as start a formal logging of daily thoughts, trades, and results. And yes, as I’ve always done in the past, I’ll post actual results … good, bad, ugly, and fully supported by trading records.

As has been the case in my past “public” life, this will be a completely no-hype site. I hate it, period. I’m a trader … pure and simple … and consider the ethical portion of this business to be more important than any other aspect of trading. The sole purpose of my posts will be to share observations from one person’s perspective for those who choose to follow my journey to consider.

So let the journey begin anew.

Don

And so another journey of sorts begins.  One where hopefully the lessons, failures, and humbling moments of this man’s life and trading career which ultimately catapulted him to the top of the industry’s Mount Everest, can be shared in the spirit of continuing to pay it forward.

It was good.

It was bad.

And, at times, it was oh-so-ugly.

But in the end, as with the gift of life itself, it was all good.

So a new and exciting journey begins.

One that – if done right – will benefit traders and our charities alike, and like its predecessor, will forever stand the test of time.

And as always, guided and strengthened by the grace of God.