The Apprentice

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Clancy and Jeff Benedict

Last week I took a business trip to Salt Lake City. Mark Willes, the CEO of Deseret Management Corporation, asked me to conduct a writing seminar on the elements of storytelling for the folks at KSL TV and KSL Radio.

I brought along my apprentice, my 11-year-old son Clancy. He's a promising photo journalist and a whiz when it comes to gadgets and technology. So I put him to work taking pictures (see some of the photo credits for this blog) and helping with music.

What's music got to do with writing? In my case, a lot.

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Falling In Love... Again and Again

I'm always on the hunt for ways to strengthen my marriage. Not that there is anything wrong with it. But the point is that marriage relationships can take unintended wrong turns when left on auto pilot. So last summer I tried something different. I took my children on vacation for a week and left my wife Lydia at home. It was the best vacation Lydia has ever had. And when I returned, our relationship was suddenly fresh and new. It was like falling in love all over again.

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AN AMERICAN BOOKKEEPER

What’s your life story?

I mean if you died tomorrow, what would people say your life was about?

I’m thinking about this because last week I paid a visit to a man who is facing
death. Ray Brown is 86 years old and was just diagnosed with cancer. He’s
down to 112 pounds. That’s about 100 pounds below his normal weight. He’s in
a nursing home, where I found him alone, dozing in a wheelchair and wearing a
red-checked flannel bathrobe on a muggy 85-degree day in East Lyme,
Connecticut.

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The Accidental CEO

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Two years ago I wrote a book called How to Build a Business Warren Buffett Would Buy: The R.C. Willey Story. Tonight a television documentary based on the book will air on BYUtv, a worldwide cable/satellite television channel that reaches 60 million U.S. homes via DirecTV, Dish Network and over 500 cable systems.

When BYUtv called last year and asked if I'd make the film, I couldn't pass up the opportunity. Neither could the superb film director, writer, editor and associate producer that worked with me. All of us were drawn to this rags-to-riches story where the good guys finish first.

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When You're Feeling Sad

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Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens,

Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens,

Brown paper packages tied up with strings –

These are a few of my favorite things.

When the dog bites,

When the bee stings,

When I'm feeling sad,

I simply remember my favorite things

And then I don't feel so bad!

Julie Andrews sung these classic lyrics from Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein in The Sound of Music. The song is a great anecdote to circumstances of life that can get you down.

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Jeff Benedict is the bestselling author of sixteen non-fiction books, as well as a television and film producer. His latest book, The Dynasty, is the definitive inside story of the New England Patriots under Robert Kraft, Bill Belichick and Tom Brady, each of whom cooperated for the book. Published in 2020, it was an instant New York Times bestseller. The book is being developed into a 10-part documentary series, which Jeff is executive producing. In 2018, Jeff co-wrote the #1 bestseller Tiger Woods and he was an executive producer on the HBO documentary “Tiger” that was based on the book and aired in 2021. The book is currently being developed into a scripted series, which Jeff is executive producing. Jeff is also the executive producer on a documentary based on his book Poisoned that will air on Netflix. In 2017, he co-produced “Little Pink House,” a feature film starring Catherine Keener and Jeanne Tripplehorn that was based on Jeff’s book of the same title. And in 2016, Jeff co-wrote with Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young his bestselling autobiography QB, which was the basis of an NFL Films documentary. Jeff has been a special-features writer for Sports Illustrated, the Los Angeles Times, and the Hartford Courant, and his essays have appeared in the New York Times. His stories have been the basis of segments on 60 Minutes, CBS Sunday Morning, HBO Real Sports, Discovery Channel, Good Morning America, 20/20, 48 Hours, NFL Network, and NPR.

TIGER WOODS 200w  TheDynasty cover 200w