Monday, September 26, 2022

Virtual Book Tour + #Giveaway: Shining Brightly by Howard Brown @GoddessFish


by Howard Brown

GENRE: Memoir


In Shining Brightly, Silicon Valley pioneer, cancer survivor and interfaith peacemaker Howard Brown shares keys to resilience for successful entrepreneurs, patient advocates and community leaders. He shows us how to reach out through our families, our communities and around the world to form truly supportive connections and friendships. From Howard’s career as a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, to his conquering metastatic stage IV cancer twice, to his compassionate outreach as a peacemaker, to his love of sports—this ultimately is not one man’s story. Shining Brightly is a story shared by countless men and women—and may wind up changing your life as well. With each true story he tells in the pages, Howard invites readers to picture how they might join him in shining more light in our world.

Purchase SHINING BRIGHTLY on Amazon


When I landed in Silicon Valley in 1997, people told me: “The math is crazy here. Two plus two equals 200.” As a top salesman for more than a decade, I was used to the roller-coaster ride of chasing big deals. I’d had my share of setbacks as well as breathtaking commission checks when great deals finally were signed. But moving into Silicon Valley was climbing to a whole new altitude. At the same time, I also was evolving from strictly sales to becoming a serial entrepreneur, a life whose ups and downs are less like a roller coaster and more like scaling the Himalayas. Silicon Valley in the 1990s was as disorienting as Alice in Wonderland or The Matrix.

With each passing quarter of the year, old assumptions were turned head over heels. I had come of age when aspiring salespeople, executives and entrepreneurs could develop their skills along comfortable on ramps like NCR’s lavish training programs. There was no Sugar Camp with the implicit promise of a successful career. In Silicon Valley, it was learn fast, move fast and earn faster. Everything was new and speculative. There was no safety net. We were scrambling to find toe holds in startups operating out of borrowed garages, cramped cubicles, dusty attics—wherever we could pitch our tents. We were competing for seats at flimsy card tables where people were hunched over their plans to build the future. I was among thousands who were hooked on this adrenaline rush. I sweated toward my first big success in a claustrophobic basement startup that was overwhelmed with the odor of frying onions every day as the vents of the next-door Mexican restaurant turned on for the lunch and dinner rush.

When people first told me about Silicon Valley’s crazy math, I laughed at the exaggeration. When I landed in the scrambler myself, I realized they weren’t kidding. Within just a few years, Lisa and I were able to buy a beautiful, newly built home and increase our charitable giving significantly with our “found money.” I earned big money via large commissions and stock options originally worth pennies working around the clock to build and sell a revolutionary product in the music industry that wound up failing not too long after it went public. We were ahead of our time in that basement, so our concept quickly fizzled. But in Silicon Valley? We still took money home. And, as surprising as it may seem, most of the investors weren’t complaining. For the most part, they were clear-eyed venture capitalists pouring money into startups that sounded promising, hoping to strike gold on just a few of the many bets they were placing.

What about all that money? That’s the first myth about the heyday of Silicon Valley that I need to bust. Many of us weren’t in this for the money. Sure, we all hoped to strike it rich and make a better life for ourselves. Some of us made big money, often for an all-too-brief time. I know that I personally wanted to become a philanthropist and give back. But the money was not what drove us to work insane hours and to nearly abandon our families along the way. No, what drove us through each day was the heady dream of reinventing the way the world works—the way we all connect and move and interrelate—the way we do our work and the way we enjoy ourselves after work. We were the generation that firmly believed we could make the most fantastic tech dreams come true. And, if that sounds like the plot for a sci-fi movie, then so be it. 

Interview with Howard Brown

Who would you recommend this to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?


Which do you think you have the most of: talent, intelligence, education, or persistence? How has it helped you in your life?

I call persistence resiliency. And I use “shining brightly” to refer to the unique mix of talent, intelligence, education and persistence that each of us possesses. If we recognize the optimal mix for us, then we start to shine wherever we are in life.

What has been the worst advice you received as a writer? What has been the best?

Worst advice from a friend: Write a book; it’s easy.

Best advice from my editor David Crumm at Front Edge Publishing: He told me there are hundreds of steps in writing and publishing a book, so don’t get discouraged or let any one step prevent you from finishing. I thought it would take 1 year and it has taken 3

Which would you say you enjoy the most: to write, research, or to read when you can?

I love the process of research and interviewing that goes into a project like this. My own way of shining brightly in the world involves lots of person-to-person contact with people each and every day.

If you could have three wishes, what would they be?

My three wishes are that through my life and work, more people will be helped to find peace, kindness and hope in their lives.

What’s the one thing you’ve always wanted but still don’t have?

To start with a team in the NBA.

What’s in store next for you as a person and writer?

Already, I’m crisscrossing the United States, in person, to speak to groups about the messages of hope and resiliency in my book. I plan to continue as a speaker, consultant, workshop leader and will continue to write both online and in a future book.

And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you (this could be absolutely anything!)? Could you please provide us with a picture of you with them / it or just a picture of it!

We have a pet dog named - Cody, a Cavachon, who actually appears in the book. He helped to make friends with neighbors because Cody made a friend with their little boy.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Howard Brown is an author, Silicon Valley entrepreneur, interfaith peacemaker, two-time stage IV cancer survivor and healthcare advocate. For more than three decades, Howard’s business innovations, leadership principles, mentoring and his resilience in beating cancer against long odds have made him a sought-after speaker and consultant for businesses, nonprofits, congregations, and community groups. In his business career, Howard was a pioneer in helping to launch a series of technology startups before he co-founded two social networks that were the first to connect religious communities around the world. He served his alma matter—Babson College, ranked by US News as the nation’s top college for entrepreneurship—as a trustee and president of Babson’s worldwide alumni network. His hard-earned wisdom about resilience after beating cancer twice has led him to become a nationally known patient advocate and “cancer whisperer” to many families. Visit Howard at to learn more about his ongoing work and contact him. Through that website, you also will find resources to help you shine brightly in your own corner of the world. Howard, his wife Lisa and daughter Emily currently reside in Michigan.

Connect with Howard Brown




$25 Amazon/BN GC

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Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thanks for hosting!

Stormy Vixen said...

Congratulations on tomorrow's release of Shining Brightly, Howard! I enjoyed reading the interview and getting to know a little about you and I enjoyed reading the excerpt, your book sounds like fascinating read! Good luck with your book and the tour!

Thanks for sharing it with me and have a fabulous week!

Marcy Meyer said...

I like the cover. This sounds like a great memoir.

Anonymous said...

Today, I can really use that "resiliency" theme! Thanks for sharing this.

Daniel M said...

sounds like a fun one

Jolanda said...

Congratulations on your release