Sam LaCrosse is the author of Value Economics: The Study of Identity.
Born in a working-class suburb of Cleveland, Ohio, LaCrosse has always been literary-minded, even while he was learning to walk.
“My parents said I started reading when I was eighteen months old,” LaCrosse contextualizes.
It then should come as no surprise that throughout his adolescence, LaCrosse frequently participated in writing competitions, and he also was enrolled in advanced classes in middle and high school.
“I don’t mean to brag about my lackluster academic achievements, but I loved reading, writing, and that kind of material,” adds LaCrosse, who despite possessing an arsenal of literary talents ultimately decided to major in finance when he entered university.
Yet, LaCrosse is not one of those repressed intellectuals who wishes he would have pursued an art degree instead of a more practical discipline, like finance.
In fact, he credits his finance degree for helping him land gainful employment post-graduation.
“And now I sell cloud infrastructure to entrepreneurs in middle market sectors, in addition to running my own business on the side,” says LaCrosse, who self-deprecatingly asserts that he is no financial wizard.
“As it turns out, I’m actually very financially illiterate.”
LaCrosse may claim to be fiscally analphabetic, but The Forest City native is actually quite calculated, otherwise he would not have invested serious capital into publishing Value Economics, a book he wrote in order to lead readers, and perhaps himself, to genuine self-discovery.
“The book actually stems from a conversation I had with my mother in the summer of 2019, when we were having a discussion about beliefs,” LaCrosse recalls.
During that pivotal exchange, LaCrosse’s mother opined that the overwhelming majority of the Gen Z population weren’t united on anything.
In essence, they had no shared values.
“Initially I thought that assessment was harsh, but then I started to wonder if it had validity to it,” LaCrosse says, noting that growing up his father routinely urged his children to abide by values that would benefit both them, and society at large.
“Values were so ingrained into my family’s core beliefs, but even with that being said, it was always hard to define what exactly those values were.”
Hoping to find answers to some of these puzzling trains of thoughts, LaCrosse started a blog, and his first post attempted to tackle this same issue.
The piece achieved modest success, so LaCrosse continued to hammer out weekly blogs, and during one Facetime call with his parents, inklings of grandiosity crept into his mind.
“I told them that I think I might have something here, in terms of a book,” he says.
LaCrosse then began forming a manuscript that consisted of past articles he published, but he synthesized his overall narrative with personal anecdotes and historical analysis aimed at unifying the purposeless peers of his generation.
Later, after a litany of rewrites and the inevitable self-doubt that followed, LaCrosse began shopping his completed work to publishers.
That’s when he got in touch with the brass at Scribe Media, a book publisher in Austin, Texas that LaCrosse says offers a hybrid between traditional and self-publishing.
“I got a book deal on the spot, and eight months later it was on bookshelves in June 2022,” LaCrosse explains.
It’s only been a few months since the book’s release, but already in that short span of time LaCrosse has learned invaluable lessons, most notably just how difficult it is to “blow up” as an aspiring author.
For context, Scribe Media copyedited the finished manuscript of Value Economics.
The publishing house also designed the book’s cover, configured page layouts, developed a marketing plan, and is currently in the process of producing an audiobook.
In that sense, Scribe Media has been a critical component of LaCrosse’s authorial pursuits, but their assistance came at a price.
“I shelled out a bunch of money to pay for all of the services because I am a nobody,” deadpans LaCrosse, who makes mention to his perceived irrelevance on the back cover of his book.
At present, Scribe Media’s marketing efforts have not yet yielded the results LaCrosse was hoping for when he handed them his credit card, but that isn’t to say that their efforts were for naught.
“In all honesty, I could’ve taken that money and reinvested it in social media, and that probably would’ve done better, but at the time I didn’t know better,” LaCrosse admits.
“But the thing that is going to come out of this is that I have a definitive product that looks bad ass, and so if I were to go to a more traditional publishing house that would pay me for my book, I have a really good proof of concept that would indicate that I’m not just fucking around.”
As for what’s next in the young career of Sam LaCrosse, he will still be working his day job in sales while simultaneously continuing to promote Value Economics.
Beyond that, he has begun penning his second book, which will also deal with more philosophically based concepts.
The time commitment required to undertake these endeavors is massive, but there is an intended destination with all this.
“As you know, Quentin, writing a book is really hard, especially when you’re working off of more abstract concepts like values.”
“But what’s driving me is that I know this part of my life is going to end, because I know what my desired end state is, which is to have a wife and 4-6 kids, and then go off and spend a lot of time with them.”
That tenacity and persistency will be crucial in the coming months as Value Economics enters its fourth month on the market.
As for what specifically LaCrosse will be doing to elevate his art and his brand, he mentions that much of his efforts will be focused around gaining traction on social media, a strategy that he says he wishes he would have adopted sooner.
“If I could go back and redo my entire marketing strategy, I would have given all my money to the people who run social media and tell them to blow me up, and I would pay whatever it costs,” he shares.
“Getting eyeballs only matters if the right people are putting their own eyeballs on your stuff.”
Case in point, about a month ago LaCrosse was featured in Forbes magazine, an accomplishment that in the past would have reaped tremendous awards, but in recent years Forbes’ features have lost their significance among the general populous.
Consequently, LaCrosse’s presence in the magazine had a negligible effect on progressing his career forward.
“Being in Forbes doesn’t mean what it used to mean. I would have been much better off being in a well-viewed TikTok video or Instagram reel,” says LaCrosse.
“Going through that was my red-pill moment, in the sense that I was in Forbes magazine, and no one gave a fuck.”
But LaCrosse is still here, and he isn’t going away anytime soon.
“I know the value that I bring to the marketplace,” he says.
“And I know getting to where I want to go won’t be easy, but I’ve done too much to stop now, and I’m too excited about the possibilities that are out there.” QS
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