Before I unpublished the old version of ATLAS to make room for the 47North edition, I saved a screenshot of the existing “Popular Highlights” for the sake of posterity.

Here it is:

Popular Highlights-05-26-2014.-highlights-alone

I’m always curious which lines will resonate the most with readers, and the “Popular Highlights” section of the book shows me. During the writing process, I can sometimes predict the lines that will make it, because usually it’s those phrases that evoke emotion in me personally, though I admit I’m sometimes surprised by what ends up in the list.

“When you’re used to having nothing, nothing becomes your everything, and you never really want for anything. But it’s a double-edged sword, because there’s the danger of becoming complacent, becoming too happy with that nothing, because you’ve never known anything better. Complacency is the death of dreams, and freedom.”

Rade tells this to Ace early in the book, when he’s explaining how he coped with growing up in poverty. This quote applies to everything in life, from money, to relationships, to vocations. If you’ve never known freedom, how can you even know what it is?  49 highlights. I was expecting this one!

“Don’t think beyond the moment. Therein lies the path to failure.”

A quote from MOTH training. It can apply to anything in life that seems daunting, such as running a 25K, or cramming for an exam. If you look at everything that stands in your way, you feel overwhelmed, and just want to give up. But if you look at what’s just in front of you, and only in front of you, it doesn’t seem so overwhelming, and you know you can do it. 26 highlights. I wasn’t expecting this one to appear, but apparently it resonates with a lot of people.

“Never give in—never, never, never, never. If you’re going through hell, keep going.”

A quote from Winston Churchill. For general inspirational purposes -) 18 highlights. I had a feeling this one would make it. Churchill has some inspiring stuff.

“Patriotism to your country is the furnace, and dedication to your team the hammer, that will forge your warrior spirit. “

This is something Instructor Reed tells the recruits during training. And it’s true. You have to really love this country to do what special forces people do. And you have to really love your teammates. 13 highlights. I can’t remember if I thought this one would make it or not, but I’m leaning on the yes side.

“Back a scared man into a corner, and you’ve got a fight on your hands. Back two scared men into a corner, and you’ve got yourself a war.”

Another quote from the beginning of the book. It’s what Rade tells Tahoe when he first meets him, and it’s a pretty apt metaphor on how wars start in my humble opinion.  -)  11 highlights. I definitely thought this would make it, though I was hoping for more highlights. Heh.

And that’s it for the most popular highlights of the now unpublished edition. It will be interesting to see if the same highlighted phrases become the most popular the second time round.

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