Monday, April 30, 2007

Why Write An E-Book?

I love settling down to a really good book. Actually, I love the whole process, from going to the bookshop or library, browsing the books on the shelves to choosing one with a catchy title and bringing the book home to read at my own leisure. So why recommend writing an e-book? Regular paper books have so many advantages. I can pick it up anytime I want to. I don't have to wait for the computer to be free, hope for a good internet connection, get a neckache trying to read it on-line... I can put a bookmark where I've stopped reading in a regular book, instead of scrolling up and down on the computer screen. I can't read an e-book wherever I want. Unless of course, I kill a few trees printing the entire book out in a larger font than it would otherwise have been in a regular book.
E-books mainly have words. Pictures take a long time to download and take up a lot of space. I like books with pictures. As they say, a good picture is worth a thousand words.

Back to my question. So what's so great about an e-book? Let's look at it from the author's point of view first.

I have a friend who has been thinking about writing a story book for months now. She's got the whole plot worked out. She's even thought about some illustrations. She went as far as entering her book into a competition, hoping that if she won, it would get her some prize money to fund the initial start-up, and provide free publicity. So what happened ? Well, the whole long-drawn process of finding a good illustrator, trying to get her some funding, being really busy with her usual life, and probably sheer inertia got in the way.

That's when I suggested she consider an writing an e-book instead. Here's why.

1. Writing a regular book and getting it published needs money. Not everyone has enough money to start the process going. It becomes worse when you consider the lag time between the publishing of your book and the time you see any money from the sale of your book. E-books need very minimal capital. There are programmes that help you get started at the fraction of the cost.

2. Finding a publisher that will publish your book. You could try to publish it yourself, but you'd have to pay for your own printing. Writing an e-book eliminates that problem. The internet will allow you an easy, cheap and quick way to get your book out.

3. You can publish the book the way you want to. Nobody edits bits out.

Sometimes people get so thrilled with the idea of writing that great story, they forget that great story can only be sold if people want to buy it and read it. It has nothing to do with how well you write. Great book but no traffic equals no sales. The key word here is MARKETING. As Robert Kiyosaki, the author of the best-selling book Rich Dad, Poor Dad pointed out, he wasn't the best WRITING author. Many people, he felt, could write better than him. He failed English in school. But their books weren't being snapped off the shelves like his were.

So why get round to writing an e-book, or any book at all ? There's the attraction of having financial independence and a passive income stream. You get the satisfaction and prestige of being an author.

Writing a book, e-book or not, is not just about having a great idea and putting it down on paper. It takes a lot more to turn it into a best-seller quickly and profitably.

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Friday, April 27, 2007

This Is What You Need To Be An Outstanding Writer

In order to attain success as a writer of special feature articles, you must possess at least four qualifications:

(1) ability to find subjects that will interest the average man and woman, and to see the picturesque, romantic, and significant phases of these subjects;

(2) a sympathetic understanding of the lives and interests of the persons about whom and for whom he writes;

(3) thoroughness and accuracy in gathering material;

(4) skill to portray and to explain clearly, accurately, and attractively.

The much vaunted sense of news values commonly called a "nose for news," whether innate or acquired, is a prime requisite. Like the newspaper reporter, the writer of special articles must be able to recognize what at a given moment will interest the average reader. Like the reporter, also, you must know how much it will interest him. An alert, responsive attitude of mind toward everything that is going on in the world, and especially in that part of the world immediately around you, will reveal a host of subjects. By reading newspapers, magazines, and books, as well as by intercourse with persons of various classes, a writer keeps in contact with what people are thinking and talking about, in the world at large and in his own community. In this way you find subjects and also learn how to connect you subjects with events and movements of interest the country over.

Not only should you be quick to recognize a good subject; you must be able to see the attractive and significant aspects of it. You must understand which of its phases touch most closely the life and the interests of the average person for whom he is writing. He must look at things from "the other fellow's" point of view. A sympathetic insight into the lives of your readers is necessary for every writer who hopes to quicken his subject with vital interest.

The alert mental attitude that constantly focuses the writer's attention on the men and women around him has been called "human curiosity," which Arnold Bennett says "counts among the highest social virtues (as indifference counts among the basest defects), because it leads to the disclosure of the causes of character and temperament and thereby to a better understanding of the springs of human conduct". The importance of curiosity and of a keen sense of wonder has been emphasized as follows by Mr. John M. Siddall, editor of the American Magazine, who directed his advice to college students interested in the opportunities afforded by writing as a profession:

A journalist or writer must have consuming curiosity about other human beings - the most intense interest in their doings and motives and thoughts. It comes pretty near being the truth to say that a great journalist is a super-gossip - not about trivial things but about important things. Unless you have a ceaseless desire to learn what is going on in the heads of others, you won't be much of a journalist - for how can you write about others unless you know about others?

In journalism, men are needed who have a natural sense of wonder. . . . You must wonder at man's achievements, at man's stupidity, at his honesty, crookedness, courage, cowardice - at everything that is remarkable about him wherever and whenever it appears. If you haven't this sense of wonder, you will never write a novel or become a great reporter, because you simply won't see anything to write about. Men will be doing amazing things under your very eyes - and you won't even know it.

Ability to investigate a subject thoroughly, and to gather material accurately, is absolutely necessary for any writer who aims to do acceptable work. Careless, inaccurate writers are the bane of the magazine editor's life. Whenever mistakes appear in an article, readers are sure to write to the editor calling his attention to them. Moreover, the discovery of incorrect statements impairs the confidence of readers in the magazine. If there is reason to doubt the correctness of any data in an article, the editor takes pains to check over the facts carefully before publication. He is not inclined to accept work a second time from a writer who has once proved unreliable.

To interpret correctly the essential significance of data is as important as to record them accurately. Readers want to know the meaning of facts and figures, and it is the writer's mission to bring out this meaning. A sympathetic understanding of the persons who figure in your article is essential, not only to portray them accurately, but to give his story the necessary "human interest". To observe accurately, to feel keenly, and to interpret sympathetically and correctly whatever you undertake to write about, should be your constant aim as a writer.

Ability to write well enough to make the average person see as clearly, feel as keenly, and understand as well as he does himself the persons and things that he is portraying and explaining, is obviously the sine qua non of success. Ease, fluency, and originality of diction, either natural or acquired, the writer must possess if his work is to have distinction.

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Thursday, April 26, 2007

The Rape of Alma Mater - Book Review

It isn't often that a work of fiction can make me sit up and take notice. In the case of Wells Earl Draughon's "The Rape of Alma Mater" I have sat up and I feel like I have been sleeping throughout my entire life. The book is a must read for anyone who has concern for society's education, freedoms of speech and press and the ability to think for oneself. Of course this is a work of fiction, but it is written on the experience of the author as a graduate student during the timeframe of the book, as a demonstrator, and as a college faculty member.

In 1967 male students feared for their lives and enrolled in college to avoid the draft. The Vietnam War deeply affected the entire populace as students became increasingly concerned over how much say they had in their own futures. So they began to protest. They tasted power. This was democracy, wasn't it? The people have spoken. However, when the war ended and there no longer was a major cause for banding together and making change, they invented reasons to stand and protest. What resulted was a complete rape of the education system and eventually the press that covered it, the government that allowed it to happen for fear of not getting re-elected, and society as a whole.

Draughon's characters are so real that I feel as if I know them. Their inner turmoil is deep and torturous. Their maturation is obvious and satisfying as we follow 35 years of their lives. Through this time period we watch as things get so out of hand that even the original protestors are hoodwinked by their own propaganda. The plot flows so swiftly and surely as the reader becomes caught up in its waves and is quickly carried to the end of the book where one will sit thoughtfully for hopefully a good long while.

This book is highly recommended for those who ever wondered how things came to be in today's society, but even more so for those who never thought about it.

The Rape of Alma Mater

By Wells Earl Draughon

ISBN-10: 0595332498

Review by Heather Froeschl

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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The Manas Epos - A Review

The Manas Epos: Across the Millennium by Sindhu J., Chennai: Emerald Publishers, 2005. pp. 86, HB. Price not given. ISBN 81-7966-147-4.

The resolution of the General Assembly of the UNO concerning celebration of anniversaries in 1994-1995 recognizes the Kyrgyz Manas epos as a "vitally important connecting link that supports and unites the peoples of the Middle Asia region all along their centuries old history." It also recognizes that this epos is "not only the source of Kyrgyz language and literature but also the basis of cultural, moral, historical, social and religious traditions of the Kyrgyz people" just as it favours "the dissemination of humane ideals and values of the humanity."

Sindhu J.'s book celebrates the millennium of the heroic epos, Manas, which is rightly called "a poetic history and encyclopedia of Kyrgyz people" (p.25). It seeks to contribute to international collaboration and mutual understanding (cf. p.79) besides elucidating more than a thousand years of Kyrgyz history, culture, humanism, spiritual values, and care for others (cf. pp.80-81).

She justifies writing The Mamas Epos: Across The Millennium on the ground that not much is known about the epic tradition of our Central Asia neighbours despite India's trade and cultural relations with them since antiquity. It is, therefore, culturally enhancing and academically rewarding to explore the Central Asia's riches "both independently and with reference to our own literatures". (pp.4-5).

Sindhu's book highlights various features, notions, ideas, customs and traditions of different epochs and centuries from ninth to eighteenth, including the wars against the Chinese and Uighur tribe, the advent of Islam and conversion of heathen communities to Islamic faith, the wars in Turkestan, the politics of Central Asia in the 17th century, the rise and control of Communism, and the life in Soviet era. It draws on the epos for a lot of historical data about different regions around Kyrgystan, its rivers and lakes, towns, ethnic life, local customs, rural economy, mineral resources, horses and camels etc. just as it points to the values which are most common for all people: social justice, honesty, humanism; love for homeland, national traditions, and customs; respect for human rights, national unity and tolerance; peaceful coexistence with neighbouring states; and people's aspirations and hopes for the better future. She celebrates Manas not only for the various aspects of Kyrgyz life in the past and now but also for the national pride of the Kyrgyz people after seventy years of Soviet rule (p.4).

Since Manas is essentially episodic and oral, with emphasis on immediacy of effect before a visible audience, its singers, called Manasci, (traditionally, jomokchu), have preserved in about two million verses (p11) the conventions of recitations just as they have kept alive over a thousand years old Kyrgyz mythological tales and traditions, woven round the feats and courage of Manas and his battle-friends in their struggle for national independence. The bards have also preserved the life and deeds of Semetey, son of Manas. Now, as the epic of human survival with props for "proper mental growth, balance and psychic health" (pp.3-4), its approximately sixty versions preserved in the manuscript form in the National Academy of Sciences in Kyrgystan, help to establish the Kyrgyz national identity. Sindhu's study, however, derives from over 250,000 verses of Manas as translated into English by Walter May (1995).

In ch.2, she reviews the Turkish epic tradition with a view to contextualizing the oral/written text of Manas and examining it geographically, historically and culturally to underscore the Kyrgyz search for identity.

The Kyrgyz epic is born out of the heroic efforts of Kyrgyz tribal lords who, in AD 840, successfully fought the Uigurs and destroyed their capital of Bei-tin. Praises of this victory form the core songs out of which the monumental epic finally emerges. It is a trilogy, a biographical cycle of three generations of heroes, i.e. Manas, his son Semetey, and grandson Seitek, in over 25,000 lines. The main episodes (i) in Manas (11170 lines) relate to: birth of Manas and his childhood, his first heroic deeds; his marriage to Kanikei; his military campaign against Beijing; and death of Manas, and destruction of his achievements. In Semetey, the second part (15017 lines), the main episodes deal with: Kanikei taking Semetey and fleeing to Bukhara; Semetey's childhood and his heroic deeds, his return to Talas; his marriage to Aichurok; his fight against Kongurbai; and his death (or mysterious disappearance). The episodes in the third part (9488 lines) relate to: destruction of Semetey's family, and capture of Aichuerok and Kulchoro; Seitek growing up; fighting against the internal enemies; Seitek's marriage: and his defeat of the external enemies and death.

The epic, a mixture of prose and poetry, appeals as an epic of Return, like the Odyssey or Aeneid, just as its oral performance (p.37) reveals a society which values poetry and music, and feasting and singing (p.35 and p.39), be it someone's birth, marriage, or death (p.50).

In ch.3, the Manas epos reflects a traditional patriarchy which values kinship and family. To be important and acceptable in a family, a woman must be skilled and resourceful. She must be a faithful wife, bear male children, be affectionate mother, look after the domestic chores and be a fighter in absence of her husband. Otherwise, her position would be lower than a slave's (pp.40-42). She would be beaten, disfigured, turned out into the street, or driven back to her relatives. The epos also reveals the importance of loyal horses and cattle, rather than money, in the rural economy of the nomadic tribes.

In ch.4, Sindhu describes the influence of Manas on various aspects of present day Kyrgyzstan. "Yurta-style of life" is still prevalent in art, architecture, and daily life (p.71). Older traditions still prevail in both rural and urban communities. "Krut" and "Kumyss" are still served at home and in hotels. "Hunting" as in the epic time is still in vogue with the same old tools. The best known Kyrgyz writers evince the same old lyrical quality (as in Manas) in their modern prose (p.75). Sindhu refers to several works of fiction published in 1960s and 1970s to point our the deeper influences of Manas.

She also finds several points of comparison between the Manas and the Indian classical epics such as the Mahabharata and Ramayana (p.83). She notes that the poems about Ilios and Odysseus have ceased to inspire heroic values among the Western people and lost their original dimensions as oral tales (pp.81-82) but the Kyrgyz and the Indian epics are still moulding the lives of their people (p.83).

The Manas Epos: Across the Millennium testifies to T.S. Eliot's statement about the pastness of the present and the timeliness of the past. The Manas epic is the first piece of Kyrgyz oral literature to be recorded and translated into other languages and is rightly viewed as an epitome of oral creativity. It continues to be sung with acting which is an ample proof of the Kyrgyz attachment to its past just as the millennium celebrations of Manas have received world-wide interest in Central Asia. Sindu J. deserves praise for familiarizing the Indian audience with the Kyrgyz epic.

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

"Can I Exercise Sitting Down?" by Renee Wiggins: Book Review

Can I Exercise Sitting Down?

by Renee Wiggins

iUniverse (2006)

ISBN 059538647

Reviewed by Irene Watson for Reader Views (9/06)

There is no excuse now for having to "get up" to exercise! Renee Wiggins provides a simple solution to those of us that are bound to a chair in front of a computer, or for those that are not able to stand to do exercise. Furthermore, the exercises may be done on a plane, bus, or train. Renee proves that calories can be burned and muscles toned while sitting. What a wonderful concept!

Not much equipment is needed - only dumbbell weights, an exercise band, a mat, and a bottle of water. Renee provides an exercise calendar for a full month, e.g. Day 1: walk, treadmill, or bike; Day 2: stretching; Day 3: Biceps, Triceps; Day 4: Walk or bike and stretch. Each day is a variety so boredom of the repetition doesn't set in. Illustrations, photographs, and instructions are included. The best part of the photographs I liked was the fact they were of real women, slightly overweight, and not wearing cutzy exercise apparel.

Day 1 starts with making a commitment. The exercise for the day is walking for 30 minutes or 10,000 steps for the day. This is approximately 5 miles. The snack for the day is an apple. Day 2 is titled "Conversations with Self." Renee provides thoughts for contemplating, focus for the day being stretching and ending with a small banana for a snack. Her recommendation is to stretch after an aerobic workout or a hot bath. Renee tells us that warm muscles are more flexible. Each day Renee provides effective exercises, simple and encouraging, for better health and well being.

Although a small book, "Can I Exercise Sitting Down" is full of positive and effective ways those of us that prefer to sit during exercise could maintain our body. As with any exercise program healthy eating is a must. Renee provides a simple plan and tips to go along with the exercise regime.

Renee Wiggins is a certified personal trainer, licensed certified massage therapist, and a licensed dietitian. She shares her knowledge well with those that want to exercise their way to better health. This concise book is a must for anyone that is still on the "thinking" about an exercising routine, or promising oneself they "will start to exercise on Monday." Renee makes the whole ordeal simple and fun.

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Baby Boomers - You Have All the Information You need to Write Your Ebooks

Baby boomers, are you ready to write your eBook? Maybe you don't know what topic to use. Well, don't think too hard, you already have as much information as you need to get your first eBook written. It's all in your head because it's your personal stories.

Baby boomers have lived through some of the most exciting times in history. Born between the years of 1946 to 1964, Boomers have witnessed the Vietnam War, Civil Rights Movement, Assassinations of President Kennedy, his brother Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. The world was affected by the events of these years. Boomers lived them.

Why not take your experiences turn them into an eBook? If you are starting or have an online business, you want to show your expertise in your field. You might struggle to come up with ideas to write about. But using your personal experiences and memories can be the framework of your first eBook. You can give this information away on your site or sell it for an appropriate price. Take a look at how easy it would be to put your personal experiences or memoirs in an ebook.

Writing an eBook has great benefits for online business professionals. Becoming an author gives you credibility and respect in your field. Your eBook also lets you give current and potential clients an example of your expertise. Since writing an eBook is actually not very difficult, why not take advantage of this media to promote your online business? You could have your first eBook outlined and ready to write in a very short time when you follow these suggestions.

1. List Your Favorite Memories

Sit down and recall a series of at least 10 of your favorite memories over the years. You will probably find that you have a book full of topics to write about. Don't let that overwhelm you. It's not necessary to write every detail or every line from your life. You are not doing an autobiography, you just want to create a few memoirs and make them real to others.

2. Expand on the Memoirs You Select

Think of at least 5 to 10 things about each of the memories you wrote that were significant to you. Turn those into another list. Now look at this list. As you review the list, think about what lessons you learned from each situation. Write notes about the lessons, insights, benefits of that experience. Now, begin to consider how what you wrote could become a lesson of value for others.

3. Fill in the Details

It's time to fill in the information. You don't have to get too personal or intense with this writing. You can put it in any form that you like; poetry, essay, lists, anything. Continue to write like this using all 10 memories ideas creating detailed information for each of the 10 memories.

4. Complete Your First Draft

When you finish this list writing you should have at least 10 pages. Add a title page, table of contents, dedication and introduction and you have created at least a 14 to 15 page mini-eBook.

5. Do the Editing

Put your writing aside for a few days. When you come back to it, read through it and do some editing. You will think of additional information to add and some to delete. Find a trusted friend to read through your ebook to see if your writing is clear to another person.

6. Learn to Convert Into an Ebook

Get online to find support for how to convert your writing into a PDF format. Then you can distribute your book through your own website, blog, or through other Internet ebook outlets.

As you can see, you don't have to think too hard to create an eBook. Just remember your life experiences. Learn to focus your writing so it speaks to others and you can write one, two or a dozen eBooks fast and easy.

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Review of The Little Blue Book of Leadership - John C. Maxwell's Leadership 101

Brief lesson from the Godfather of Leadership

If you are an entrepreneur, you need this book.

Coming into any business, you have to know how to lead your team and yourself. John C. Maxwell emphasizes the importance of developing the personal qualities that create influential and successful leaders. He explains the best way to use your vision and how to make it a compelling factor towards success.

Leadership 101 is a great start for the entrepreneur who is just dipping his or her hands into personal development. At 108 pages, the information is much easier to retain and makes for a great warm up to the other books he has written.

The very language he uses makes lessons in leadership so approachable that one feels comfortable imagining the influential position he or she may acquire in an organization.

Knowing what you can offer your team, your family, your classroom, or your small business helps direct you in a manner that others will want to follow. Maxwell strives to teach you not just what works, but what will not. He supports these principles by sharing stories of well known leaders such as Ray Kroc, Jimmy Carter, Theodore Roosevelt, and Jerry Rice.

If Maxwell's own words won't move you, the stories of these successful people will definitely shake you up. Maxwell uses them as highly effective examples for the various forms of leadership that many people just cannot wait to follow.

The bottom line is, if you are a fan of John Maxwell (and who isn't?) you should definitely pick up a copy of Leadership 101. Implement the lessons taught in the book and watch your organization blossom and your business take off.

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Cheap and Effective Ways to Promote Your Books

I thought it might be an idea to share here what I do to promote my books.

I like writing articles, so that's an easy way for me to promote. For example, I have a romantic comedy coming out shortly, so I've written an article entitled, 'Crafting the Romantic Comedy' and started circulating it at various article banks.

One article I wrote last year, just before the release of a romantic suspense novel, was entitled, "Seven Ways to Inject Suspense Into Your Novel". A couple of weeks later, I was amazed to see it as the lead article in The World Wide Freelance newsletter, which has a circulation of 20,000. As a knock on effect,
people contacted me after seeing the article via that newsletter and asked me to take part in live chats and interviews at their websites. They also asked my permission to publish the article as well.

I try to gear the promotional article up to suit the particular book coming out at that time and include a link to it in the bio.

If you are interested in trying this, here are some article bank links:

You can probably find many more article banks by use of a search engine. Of course, if you can go the extra step and get your article published in a relevant magazine, so much the better. Last year, I managed to get my article, "Five Reasons I Chose to E-publish My Novel", printed in The Romantic Novelists Association magazine.

Another idea I've had is to have my book covers printed on postcards. A friend gave me the link to a reasonably priced online printer, who also supplies 250 free business cards, so I'll get some of them printed the same time. Here's the link:

Or how about putting out a press release, either in the local newspaper and/or online? See here:

I've also started including leaflets to my books that are due for release in other books I sell, so the reader, if he or she likes my style, may consider purchasing the new book when it comes out.

I also involve family and friends who are marvelous promoters. My mother, for instance, likes nothing better than telling her friends at The Salvation Army and Age Concern about her daughter, the author! Several have bought not just one book but the follow up as well!

My husband has promoted my books both at the bowls club and at work and I've had several orders that way.

These are just a few ideas I use to promote my books, low cost ideas that cost little more than your time to write an article or issue a press release!

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Monday, April 16, 2007

The Startup Garden- a WorkSavvy Startup Book Review

Do you want a no-nonsense, jargon-free, helper to guide you on starting and running your new business? Then look no further than Tom Ehrenfeld's The Startup Garden (ISBN 0071368248, McGraw Hill, 2002, and still as vital as the day it was published).

The book is written by a widely experienced small business journalist. It is a pleasure to read and for someone wary of business semantics, Tom's book will keep them at ease. Its format makes the information readily assimilable; there are plenty of breaks; short case-studies and practical descriptions of where you can get further help.

The Startup Garden treats entrepreneuring like gardening, so it's about cultivating your business and caring for it as the living thing that it is. Tom is as much concerned with your own learning and development, as with the commercial development of the enterprise.

The book begins with an examination of why you might be wanting to start a business and what you want to get out of it. It shows how you can approach planning the business and make sure that you learn from the feedback that flows from operations. Tom's approach to business numbers and finance helps you get clear on the big picture and what aspects of money matter to the business. He is of the school that considers raising large sums of external finance may not be the most effective way to go.

He favors the bootstrapping approach to business, where you generate the maximum volume of sales and are parsimonious with expenditure, leveraging all you resources until your business is performing successfully. Right through the Startup Garden you will be able to see how to draw on your own strengths rather than having recourse to expensive outside expertise. I know from my own business experience that it is all too easy to assume that there are people out there who know better than you do. Such notions tripped me up more than once, and at considerable cost.

What is clear, Tom points out, is that your best consultant is your own learning. At the beginning, the new entrepreneur tends to identify very closely with the business creation and detachment is difficult. The first lesson is to rejoice in the mistakes you make. They can be priceless teachers. He points out the importance of revisiting your original mission and testing its current validity, checking that your early role remains appropriate, especially in the light of the world outside your own company.

I share with Tom the last thoughts he expresses: "get started". Reading books―even his―will only teach you so much. Doing it will teach you more. I have met far too many people who say things such as, "my prototype's not right yet", "inflation's running too high", "the trade cycle hasn't bottomed out yet", "my bank's turned me down", and many other invalid reasons for not launching. The right time is now. Reading the Startup Garden should not take more than an hour. That is a piece of procrastination I recommend! The quickest way to get a copy is to write an email direct to Tom Ehrenfeld:

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Saturday, April 14, 2007

Hot Tips For Marketing Books For Self Publishers

With careful planning you can market, promote, and get (free) publicity (publicity is always free) on a limited budget; you can take the cheap and easy way. Whether you've just published a book or have a book that isn't selling, now is the time to get to it; start marketing today! This article will provide you with easy, free, and cheap book marketing, promotion and publicity tips to get you headed in the right direction fast.

Send out the same press release to the editor of your local daily newspaper every week until you are called for an interview or are written up. Your book press release should not be written as you would a sales letter or flier, it should be written for the editor and tell about your book in a factual way, no opinion or glowing remarks. Make sure your press release spells out the 'who, what, where, when, and why.'

Make sure you have at least one good press release, written in AP style that you can send out for the lifetime of your book. Mail a press release to all the trade journals in your field over and over again; you can use the same release. When picked up by wire services, a press release can easily end up generating hundreds of mentions for your book.

Press releases can generate thousands of dollars in sales when picked up by national trade or print media. Don't underestimate the value of a good press release for making book sales.

Find a non-exclusive distributor with a good reputation to carry your book for the book store trade, as well as for other retailers. Contact any companies, corporations or organizations that might use your book for promotions; offer significant discounts for volume orders or for thousands of copies offer a specified amount above book production costs. Place free ads periodically for your book's website on Craigslist in different categories to drive even more traffic to your website.

Contact non-bookstore booksellers and offer to leave books on consignment. Be your own publicist and send a press release along with a review copy of your book to publications in your book's genre and to book review magazines. Offer to trade writing a monthly column in a trade publication in your books' genre, in trade for display ads on the same page.

Your sales letter or flier should include an eye-grabbing headline, the benefits to the buyer, the book features, book sales information and testimonials. Remember to make sure your book is listed in Books-in-Print; don't assume it's already listed. Every day it's important to focus on a variety of marketing approaches.

Make sure not to overlook the Internet; get yourself interviewed or profiled for sites both about writing, publishing and about the topics covered in your book. Market your book to your number one market first, and then go after the secondary markets. Try giving away one of your books in a raffle at a local function to get more book recognition.

Get as many testimonials about your book, as possible, from experts in the field relating to your title, not customers; use on your fliers and back of books. I've seen publishers lose a lot of money paying for expensive display ads, so beware if you do this; I don't advise it in the beginning -- get your feet wet first so you know what you're doing.

Make sure to promote and market your book each and every day, both online and offline. Create an online contest and list it in online contest directories to drive traffic to your website.

Use your book promotion and book marketing dollars wisely; go after the free and cheap resources daily. Make sure to test, test, and test some more before you lay out large sums of money. The success of any book marketing effort depends on a good book and just plain hard work; its been done many times before and you can do it too.

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Tips For Writing An Article

It's no secret that writing articles for the Internet is becoming a rather profitable activity, whether it be submitting to directories to bring traffic to your site or submitting to sites for direct payment. Unfortunately, not everybody knows how to go about writing articles for either avenue. This article will give you some article writing basics that will get you on your way to writing articles for whatever reason you choose.

The first thing you want to do when writing an article is try to pick a subject that you know something about. This is going to make things a lot easier. For one thing, you won't have to do as much research in order to write the article, if any at all. For another, writing about something you are familiar with will help the article sound more natural and conversational, which makes for more interesting reading.

The next thing you want to do when writing an article is decide on how you are going to approach the subject. A common mistake that people make is that they pick a topic like baseball, start talking about how the game started, then move into the rules and end up talking about their favorite players. They go from one sub topic to another with no real direction. These types of articles, for the most part, are not only maddening to try to read, but are rarely accepted by sites for either payment or even posting to their free directory. So pick a central theme, such as rules of the game, and stick with it throughout the article. It will make writing it a lot easier because it is more structure.

The next thing you want to do when writing an article is make sure that you do a spell and grammar check. You would be surprised how many people will write an article and not even put it through a spell checker. It only takes about five seconds to do. If you write your article in a decent program like Microsoft Word, you should also have a decent grammar checker as well. Poorly constructed articles with bad spelling and bad grammar are also not going to be accepted.

Finally, at the end of your article, you want to make sure that you tie everything together and wrap it up so that the reader feels like they have had a complete reading experience. You don't want people walking away thinking to themselves, "that was a waste of time." Now, this doesn't mean you have to give them EVERY piece of information on a topic. In many cases, this isn't possible to do in one article. This is where you then direct them to other resources where they can learn more.

So, if you want to get a complete article writing education, check out my signature.

See, that's the way to write a good article.

To YOUR Writing Success,

Steven Wagenheim

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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Poems That Propel the Planet - Book Review

Prolific and Prophetic Poems to Revolutionize Your World

The love of people must surpass our love of power. We must remember we are all interrelated and interconnected as one. None of us are as strong as all of us. Together we all accomplish more. Divided we fall apart and destroy ourselves.

There is nothing new under the sun. Wars have been fought throughout time. Peacemakers however who transcended the killing instinct and unified people have proven to be timeless. Their words still speak to us today providing wisdom and guidance.

Love for humanity moved great liberators, reformers, and pioneers throughout history. Much can be learned from them. In a world where competition and negativity thrive, we need fresh inspiration to empower us. Where consumerism, consumption, and corporation nation have captivated us, we need truth to cut us free.

Geopolitically the self-willed foreign policy of nations has caused much evil. The American way has led to unnecessary deaths throughout the globe. It is time politicians seek the global good rather than plundering the planet for petrodollars and arms contracts.

The power of disagreement provides enlightenment, while challenging our ideological orbit. When ultimatums replace options and alternatives, the power of diplomacy is severed along with our international influence. Constructive dialogue however paves the way for reconciliation and peaceable conflict resolution.

Military invasion and occupation creates rather than eliminates terrorism. Militaristic campaigns never win the battle for the hearts and minds of humanity, neither do they provide for posterity a meaningful legacy. Love, liberation, and reconciliation is what the world needs.

Paul Davis is a worldwide minister and peacemaker. Paul's compassion for people & passion to travel has taken him to over 50 countries of the world where he has had a tremendous impact. Paul builds dreams, breaks limitations, and reconciles nations.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

7 Article Reviews From The Musings Of a Mad Prophet


This article is filled with a miraculous but humble story about how God is
faithful to those who love and serve Him. Matthew gives the one dollar he
needed for transport to a homeless man and the Lord uses a total stranger to
pay him back the money. The circumstances of how the dollar was paid back to
him have the hallmarks of the hand of God being involved. Though a humble
amount of money is involved in this story, the story still strikes a cord in
your spirit because it demonstrates how our Great and Mighty God still
reaches out and affects the lives of the little people. No matter how big
you are or how much money you have, God is with you and he is involved in
your life. This story is an inspiration to new believers especially, because
it shows them although they are only new members of God's family and may
feel insignificant, it doesn't matter because God will still answer their
prayers and perform miracles for them if they do His will.

I've been a Christian for two years now and this story inspired me because
it shows that God will perform miracles for me, regardless of how long I've
been a Christian for. God doesn't care how long someone has been a Christian
for or how much money they have to sow into the gospel, Gods looks upon a
mans heart, and if your heart is in the right place God will perform a
miracle for you just like he did with Matthew. Matthew may not be a rich man
but he gives what he can and God does miracles to make sure he is

"No good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly" (Psalm 84:11)

This particular verse relates to the article because Matthews testimony of
how the dollar was paid back to him, illustrates how Gods word is fulfilled.
Matthew walked uprightly in the righteousness of Christ and didn't deny a
Homeless man a drink, Jesus said to give to them in need and when Matthew
did Gods will and walked uprightly, God didn't withhold the money he needed.
This article showed me that God is the master of the universe and He gives
and He takes away.


This article paints the picture of a man's amazing journey through life on
earth and life in the spirit realm. God often lets Satan attack us and makes
us suffer so we will draw nearer to Him. In the Bible Job lost his family,
his house, his money and he even developed an illness that made painful
boils appear on his skin, yet he kept trusting and praising God. This story
shows me how Matthew is like a modern day Job and it really puts the book of
Job into perspective. Matthew has lost his family, his family home, his
former life and he has developed a serious mental illness, but he still
keeps praising God and trusting Him just like Job did!

Psalm 119:71
"It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy

Matthew has certainly been harshly afflicted through the loss of his family,
and the pangs of emotional pain have tormented him for a longtime. Although
from a shallow perspective it seems like a hopeless situation for him and
that he lost the fight, if you look through the eyes of Christ you can see
that it is a hopeful situation and that his life bears all the hallmarks of
a Prophet. Although it seems like he has lost the fight, he has not lost the
war, he may have lost a battle but he certainly hasn't lost the war. The war
is against Satan who attacks Gods children but God uses evil for good.
Although God let Satan afflict Matthew it was a blessing in disguise because
it made Matthew learn thy statutes, and it drew him closer to God than
anyone could ever imagine.

A diamond is deep underground for many years while covered in dirt and
darkness. The diamond sits underground buried in a seemingly infinite amount
of dirt in absolute darkness. Many years later a miner begins mining for
that diamond, and he dig's underground and searches for that valuable
diamond through all the dirt, mud and darkness. Finally when the miner
discovers the diamond he cleans off the mud and dirt and polishes it so it
shines like the treasure it is. Matthew is like a diamond, although he has
been in darkness and feels dirty from his prostitute addiction, God still
loves him and values him as the diamond he truly is. God is like that miner
and no matter how dirty Matthew gets he will still be that shining diamond
to God, if he ever gets dirty again, God will just give him another polish
and clean. You cannot change what you are.

Matthew was below the ground and in the darkness for a long time, but an
ordinary rock cannot form into a diamond unless it's deep underground for a
long period of time. Matthew has been underground for a long time after his
wife left him, but while he has been underground he has turned into a
diamond and is no longer an ordinary rock. No ordinary rock can ever
transform into a diamond unless it's buried in dirt for many years.

Matthew has been buried in dirt for many years just as this article
illustrates, but it has turned him into a diamond that shines and reflects
Gods light, just as a diamond reflects the blinding light of the sun.

Any Christian or Non-Christian who has experienced a harsh divorce that
broke their heart, or feels God hates them and is ruining there life should
read this article. This article will show you there is light at the end of
the tunnel.

MARK 5:1-20

This article paints a clear picture of what happened when Jesus healed the
demon possessed man and the circumstances around this story in the bible. I
felt although I had been taken back in time when reading this article, and I
could see Jesus bring comfort to a man who was possessed by demons and
hearing their nasty voices. The apostles wrote the gospels many years after
Jesus died, and it was the Holy Spirit that revealed to them what Jesus did
and said during his ministry. I feel this dramatized story of "my name is
legion" was also inspired by the Holy Spirit and Matthew wrote this story as
the Holy Spirit revealed all the details to him.

The story gives us an expanded version of what happened when Jesus healed
the possessed man, it also gives us some details about who the possessed man
was and how Jesus changed his life. This article also showed me that many
mentally ill people who roam the streets talking to voices and yelling at
the sky are actually demon possessed, and do not have problems with their
brain, but they have spiritual problems with demons. This story shows us
that Jesus Christ is the answer to mental illness and that Jesus can heal
this virus of Satan affecting so many people's minds today.

This article is like a time machine that takes you back in time so you can
see the pain the demon possessed man was going through, and how his pain was
healed by The Prince of Peace. When reading this article I saw Jesus come to
the possessed man like the loving Saviour that he is and heal him with his
love and powerful spirit. This article will bring you closer to Jesus and it
will give you compassion on people with mental illness. Jesus loves all
people, including mentally ill people and we must pray for these people just
like Jesus did.


This article shows us that to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven and following
Jesus requires us to be born again of the spirit and to bear fruit. In
Matthew 7, Jesus tells us to build our house upon the rock so we do not fall
when the wind and rain comes, because if we build on the sand we will
collapse and be taken away by the flood. Following Jesus requires us to obey
Him by giving to those that are in need, feeding those who are hungry and
not showing partiality because someone is a drug addict or drunk. We are to
treat everyone equally, because one day a heroin addict who spent all his
money on drugs but is starving might approach you for some money to buy
food, if you deny him come judgment day Jesus will cast you to His left hand
side and label you a goat as it says in Matthew 25. When you ask Jesus why
He says you're a goat he will answer you, "I was that heroin addict, who
begged you for food, and I was hungry but you called me swine and you would
not feed me."

Jesus said to enter the Kingdom of Heaven we must be born again of the
spirit. In 2 Corinthians 5:17 it says "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he
is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold all things are become
new." If we are born again we should be new creatures in Christ, who love
and help all those in need without showing partiality. Being a Christian is
about living those words Jesus spoke and not just listening to them in
church, we need to be doers of the word and not just hearers deceiving our
own selves. We can worship Jesus all we like in church with our lips and
mouths, but if we are not doing what Jesus said by giving to all those in
need, our hearts are far from Him. Our hearts need to be close to Jesus,
because if our hearts are far from Him while we vainly worship Him with our
mouths and lips in church we are in danger of being cast aside as goats, and
we will never be the sheep who will have the honour of becoming apart of His
heavenly flock. Sheep will make it into Heaven but the goats will not make
it in.

A goat is someone who worships Jesus with their mouth and lips but whose
heart is far from Him. A goat will worship Jesus with his mouth in church
but will not obey Jesus. A sheep will not only worship Jesus with his mouth,
but will mean it in his heart but doing all that Jesus commanded, and giving
to all those in need without showing partiality.


Jesus clearly said that many would say to Him on judgment day "Lord, Lord
didn't we cast out demons and do many wonders in your name." And then Jesus
would say to them, "Depart from me I never knew you." In this controversial
yet revealing article, Matthew shows that calling Jesus Lord and attending a
church service once a week is not enough to make it to Heaven. This article
is controversial and thought provoking, but one cannot underestimate the
potency of Jesus words when he said, in that day He would say "Depart from
me I never knew you!"

Many people are going to tell Jesus they know Him on judgment day, and he's
going to say that He never knew them. If you want to find out about how to
make it to heaven and how to be truly born again, this article covers these
issues and it covers the truth of what is exactly in the bible. This article
will give you the instructions on how to put enough oil in your lamp so you
can make it to the wedding feast.


Matthew does suffer from mental illness and in this article he describes
this illness from a personal perspective, probably better than any medical
professional ever could. Matthew exposes how mental illness is a spiritual
issue, and mental illness is a spiritual deformity or spiritual issue the
patient has and not something carnal or biological. Bipolar is a complex
thing to have, it causes people to have high's and lows at extreme levels
and Matthew explains here, how sometimes the highs of Bipolar can sometimes
exceed the pleasure of any drug. Its clear the man writing this article has
a deep spiritual problem that the mental health professionals cannot
address, Matthew does hear from God, but he also hears from demons and this
is a spiritual issue that medical professionals have been conditioned to

The Prophets in the Old and New Testament heard voices regularly, in the New
Testament Paul saw a bright light and heard the voice of Jesus talking to
him after he fell off the horse, if you told this story to a Psychiatrist
they'd probably say that Paul is schizophrenic and hears voices (auditory
hallucinations). There is more to mental health patients than meets the eye.
Matthew is an exceptional case and he understands his mental illness is a
spiritual problem at its roots, it does have some negative aspects to it,
but it also has some major advantages, because Matthew can hear very clear
in the spirit and he often gets monumental and amazing prophecies off God,
which confounds any learned theology professor or pastor.


This article shows us how to worship God and walk in His spirit, going to
church once a week is not worshipping and living for God. Buying more
expensive worldly items for vanities sake while neglecting to sow into the
Kingdom of God, is a spit in Gods face. It's also spitting in Gods face when
you don't use your money to be a good Samaritan and help the poor. It's a
disgrace to God when so much money is wasted on flash cars and extravagant
houses, which are only purchased in vanity to satisfy a rich mans ego; this
money should be used to get a homeless person somewhere to stay, or to buy
bibles that can be sent to China as there are 60 million Christians in China
with no bible.

This article shockingly shows us that most people going to church once a
week in the west are not serving God with their heart. People in the West
seem to worship God with their mouths and lips, but their hearts are far
from Him. Most Christians in the West seem to be hearers of the word only
and not doers, deceiving their own selves. Jesus said to love the Lord your
God with all your heart, mind and soul and He said to love your neighbour as
yourself. In this article it displays how many Christians are breaking the
law of loving their neighbour as themselves on a regular basis; because they
are too busy indulging in the lust of the world as they satisfy the appetite
of their vanity.


Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Fiction - Easing Exposition into a Story

Exposition is the descriptive material that sets a tone to a piece of writing and introduces the background, the characters, and other facts. Exposition is better used in non-fiction, but the need for it can be crucial to the success of a story also.

Exposition in fiction contains necessary elements like time, setting, and background for the story. More than the exposition alone, what is inside it or the information in it is what helps the plot to take off.

A century ago, many novels included long expository pages. Authors like Henry James used long expository passages and narratives without dialogue. In contrast, what is expected from fiction writers of today is continuous energy. Readers expect their interests held on every sentence and section of a story.

In a recent book review, an experienced reviewer said, "Too much exposition mars first half of an otherwise engaging read." In the stage play Urine Town a girl is stopped from telling too much, since "Nothing can kill a show like too much exposition."
Expositions are sometimes calls info dumps, especially if they are offered in extended mind-numbing paragraphs. Most readers skip them and read the story's action and dialogue, or they drop reading the story altogether.

Still, some narration and exposition can still be very important to the modern-day story, as in Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code. Could Dan Brown have entered his narrative passages in an easier-to-swallow form? Possibly, but then he would have to write three or four books instead of one, and his readers would not be able to grasp the significance of the backstory in The Da Vinci Code.

On the other hand, what is written as exposition can be incorporated into the story's action and dialogue, most of the time. When exposition becomes awkward by delaying the action in the present and it doesn't advance the plot and yet the information in it is important to introduce a scene or paint a picture, it is better if it is kept confined to a few sentences.

Let's say a sunset is important to explain a certain mood. A writer may write as exposition: As the sun set, the pale blue sky turned into a grey threatening smoke. The fire of the sun, raging against departure, left the entire horizon in its reddish hue while the rest of the world was getting immersed in shadows. The birds flew back to their nests and all was quiet.
Or the writer might incorporate the same exposition into the action of the story as: Simone hurried inside the house when the sun set, turning the pale blue sky into a grey threatening smoke.
"Hi, Peter," she called as she rushed through the living room to close an open window. The world was getting immersed in shadows while the sun raged against retreat and left a reddish hue on the horizon. "Where did you disappear, Peter?" Simone called out loud. The birds had flown back to their nests and all was quiet, but where was Peter?

Interior monologue is another way to blend the exposition into the story. Using the same exposition, the writer may use the interior monologue as: Simone made a tent with her fingertips and gazed at the setting sun that had already turned the sky into a grey threatening smoke. Did Peter need to disappear, too? On the horizon the sun was raging against retreat leaving the entire horizon in its reddish hue. Peter had shown no rage whatsoever. Soon the birds would flow back to their nests and all would be quiet, but she would continue missing Peter.

Another method of putting exposition into a story is by way of one character lecturing another one, as Sherlock Holmes did when he explained his mode of crime solving, starting with, "Elementary, my dear Watson…" In some brusquely written work, villains make speeches about their actions and plans to helpless victims. Maybe because of that, these speeches are called idiot lectures.

Whether exposition is blended into the action of the story or is used alone, the trick is to incorporate it wisely inside the story and not bore the reader with long tedious passages.

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Wednesday, April 04, 2007

The Secret Of Life

Searching for the secret of life can be an illusive task. At one point, we all ask ourselves: "What is life all about? Why am I here and what is my purpose?" Tough questions to be sure but the answers may be more simple than you think. One mistake people often make is thinking that life is somehow about them. It is not. Life is not about you but rather everything around you. When you begin to learn how to tap into the infinite energy that is all around us; you will then be well on your way to truly understanding what life is really about. It's not you... it's about others around you and how you effect their lives.

Later on in this article I am going to recommend that you read a book that will change your life and change the way you look at yourself and the people around you. You may think that I am going to tell you to read the bible but that's not the book I am referring to.

The first secret to living a happy life is to stop chasing money. You've heard the expression: "money is root of all evil" but that may be over simplifying things. Money is important because it obviously enables us to survive and support our families. The real question about money is how much is enough? You may be surprised to know that there are millions of people living in this country that make a fraction of the money you earn but they are infinitely more happy than you. These people understand the secret of life. It's no secret to them, but it may be to you.

My first suggestion to you is to stop spending money on things that you don't need. It sounds simple but very few people practice this common sense principle. Secondly, slowly pay off your credit cards and once they are all paid off, STOP charging to them. Before you use your credit card in the future ask yourself this simple question: "Can I afford to pay this item off in full at the end of the month when my credit card bill comes in the mail?" If the answer is no, then don't buy it. Practice this simple rule and you will be well on your way to financial peace and security. Remember, credit card companies rely on you to purchase things that you cannot afford! They make billion of dollars profit each year by charging you outlandish interest on the items you have chosen to purchase using credit.

There is a DVD called: "The Secret" which has been in the news for months. "The Secret" talks about the power of attraction which simply stated tells you that if you think negative thoughts then you will attract negative things into you life. If you think about positive things then you will attract positive things into your life. Although there are some interesting concepts put forth in this DVD, the one thing that I disagree with is the notion that once again, the secret of life is somehow about you and the things you would like to get out of life.

Well my friend... one of the true secrets of life is learning that things/possessions are not the secret to happiness at all. In fact - pursuing money, wealth and the notion that these things will in some way make you happy can be a life draining waste of time. Money and financial success comes easily to some people and almost impossible to attain for other people. Don't make the mistake of thinking that you have to compete with your neighbors for the almighty dollar.

At 46 years old I have read hundreds of books on countless topics - but the one book I would recommend to anyone that I love (and you're included) is the book "How To Win Friends and Influence People". Go to the book store tomorrow and purchase this easy to read paperback book. I guarantee that it will suck you in like a vacuum! I guarantee that this book will change the way you think about what is important and change the way you think and treat the people around you.

"How to Win Friends and Influence People" is the kind of book that you cannot put down once you start to read it - and that is the mark of a truly exceptional book. Even if you haven't read a book in 20 years and the thought of reading one sounds like the most boring thing you could do with your time... buy this book anyway and read it! You will thank me for it later.

Maybe you disagree with me and say to yourself: "I want to make as much money as I can and I want the finer things in life for myself and my family." "How to Win Friends and Influence People" will teach you how to do these things if that is what is truly important to you. But more importantly, this book will teach you how to understand what OTHER people want and that is the real secret to life. Written almost 100 years ago, "How To Win Friends And Influence People" is as valid today as it was when it was first published. The modern version of this classic book has been revised to reflect modern times, but the principles and many of the stories remain the same.

There are almost 6 billion people living in this world and only a few million have read the book "How To Win Friends And Influence People". Buy this book tomorrow and read it from cover to cover! If you are sad - it will make you understand happiness. If you are poor - it will make you understand success. How to win friends and influence people will help you truly understand the Secret of Life!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Tiffany Dow's "Social Networking On Squidoo" - Review

A Soup To Nuts Approach To Socializing On Squidoo -- From Setting Up A Free Account To Maximizing The Amount Of Laser Targeted Traffic Your Modules Will Bring.

In her ebook Tiffany Dow makes simple and easy work for anyone that is looking to set up a new lens on Squidoo. A quick and easy read.

I was impressed with her no hype, no filler approach to what one needs to do and will have the reader setting up their new lens in record time without any details that could confuse or frustrate the new lensmaster.

In this book you will learn:

* How to speak the Squidoo language.

* How to launch a new lens that's meant to attract attention.

* How to aim your lens at your target audience.

* How to get a Top 100 LensRank and bump up in the SERPS.

* How to nail down your niche within Squidoo.

* Everything new about Sqidoo -- Changes that will impact your socialization strategy.

It's a quick and clear read that spans six chapters and just forty seven pages. When finished you'll know exactly what to do and how to do it.

In addition, for those that may be learning challenged, she has thrown in a step by step video that is sure to remove any mystery or confusion.

She also throws in The Multi-Layered Mindset Of Web 2.0 as a bonus. She says, "It's not a buzzword or mysterious new advertising tactic - It's about raising your strategic planning to a level that matches the evolution of the World Wide Web".

Web 2.0 is another evolution of the Internet and it's all about the people. A must read!

All in all I found Tiffany's Ebook "Social Networking On Squidoo" to be an informative and useful approach for anyone that wants to broaden their marketing strategies, making common sense use of the Social Networking site known as "Squidoo"

Monday, April 02, 2007

Downloadable Audio Books - How They Changed My Life

I love books!

I have read a lot of different titles in my life. I started with a series of books about "The Famous Five" by Enid Blyton. As I grew up I got more interested in personal development, psychology, cognitive science and the human mind.

For several years my goal was to read at least one personal development book every week. These were both business and personal growth titles.

One day about six months ago I suddenly realized that my reading had decreased dramatically. I didn't read anything at all!


Well, the simple answer was that I didn't have the time or to be more accurate; I didn't prioritize the reading. On my bedside table was "Pilgrimage" by Paulo Coelho, still unfinished after several weeks.

Then a friend of mine mentioned downloadable audio books.

I wasn't that excited. I wanted to hold the book in my hands, keep the finished book in my bookcase, check for interesting chapters later and...

Ok, "I understand," said my friend, "but you just told me you didn't have the time to read."

So, I downloaded my first audio book. It felt safe to choose Paolo Coelho and now I chose one of my favorites: "The Alchemist." As I had read this book it was interesting to compare the audio book with the original.

I was totally blown away! This was exactly what I wanted. I suddenly realized that I could resume my old reading habits, or maybe I should say book consumption habits of one book a week. Maybe I even could increase this habit.

After a while I developed my own routines of how to listen to audio books most effectively. I listened while exercising and both my mind and body got trained. I listened while commuting and also when I was traveling. These were situations that didn't demand any big thinking from me. But there was another really interesting discovery I made, read on.

I could use audio books in situations that really required my total focus; Audio books that helped me in problem solving and with my creativity. This is a technique that uses sound to stimulate the creative mind pattern in your own brainwaves. This might sound a bit strange but I tried and found that somehow these audio books really helped me. I always use them when I write articles, news releases and web content. I also use them in situations when I try to think out of the box.

One other great thing about downloadable audio books is that I can get my book instantly and 24/7. It's almost like having your own library at home.

To summarize my experience with audio books so far, I have to say that I am grateful for these new technologies. I got back one of my main interests, books. I found tools that help me in my daily life, "Creative Mind System." I also found a way to be more effective as I could listen to audio books while doing other less productive tasks.

I love audio books!