Monday, December 22, 2008

Getting off the Pot: Let's look at the e-Book Business

One very useful aspect of blogging is the ability to put something out into the universe so that the universe - that is to say, friends, family, random strangers - can later say, "and how's that going, Bob?"

I absolutely do not regret having ripped up stakes to move to British Colombia. Greenwood is awesomely beautiful, as I've written in my wife's "Omygod, Omygod, what have we done" blog; "Canadian Communique".

What the heck, here's another image.

From Greenwood, BC, Canada

It's called "My Udder Store" because the the owner's first store is a hardware store. But you don't sell milk at a hardware store. That's why he had to oppen "anudder one." Small town humor. You gotta love it. That's where we have to walk to get necessities, because I ain't driving to Midway or Grand Forks. I have "all weather tires" and by that, they don't mean this.

No Holiday Whining T-Shirt shirtIt's beautiful; like living in God's own snow globe, but it's bloody cold! We are getting our chunk of what appears to be a record setting winter across North America and cabin fever is setting in - despite the blessings of cable TV and The Internet. And, as I've stated elsewhere, finances are strained for the moment.
We have been trying to think of ways to keep our minds and fingers productive and busy, and in order to do that, we both need motivation. Money is one of the better motivations I know for getting up and moving. Well, completely by accident, I stumbled across this: A woman named Melanie Mendelson who makes her living on the internet, writing e-Books. You see, it addresses all the issues both of us have with getting up and doing things. Both my wife and I have Asperger's Syndrome; one of the most notable features of this condition is that we are not natural networkers; we are not energized by social occasions or interactions.

I've even found this to be true in my explorations in Second Life; it's such a good illusion that it successfully replicates the stresses I feel when interacting with people face to face!

Well, Melanie Mendelson has an approach to working around this "neurodiversity issue" and wants to help (for a small, reasonable fee) . I'm inclined to take a chance. Because, well, information is what I do.

Let's talk about the business concept of infoproducts
(a.k.a. e-books). Basically, you sell information. You put
your info in an electronic document, and people pay you so
they can download it to their computer.

Infoproduct business is extremely profitable. An extra copy
of the e-book costs you NOTHING... There is no printing cost
and no shipping cost. You write the e-book once and sell it
over and over, and pocket all the money!

You can write your own e-book in just 24 hours of work -
even if you hate writing! Break down the time slots however
you like, and in 24 total hours your e-book will be ready to

If you spend 2 hours per day, you'll finish your e-book in
12 days. If you spend 4 hours per day, you'll be done in 6

Even a measly 30 minutes per day will get you a finished
e-book in less then 2 months! And after that, you can sell
it over and over, and profit for years and years to come...

The "24 Hour E-Book Writing System" tells you EXACTLY what to do.
You simply follow it, and at the end of the 24 hours you will have
a ready-to-sell infoproduct - period.

To learn more, click here

It's a concept that's crossed my mind from time to time; both my wife and I have things we know that are well worth writing down and the sales copy speaks directly to my concerns about trying to "make it" as a writer in more conventional ways.

We have been looking for an opportunity to turn what we know into a business and a life on a budget of ... well, not much at all.

This is the paragraph that got me to "yes."

Why Am I In The E-Book Business?

Because I am lazy and always seek shortcuts :) Seriously, I just don’t want to deal with having employees, inventory, phone calls, face-to-face sales, etc. Yes, I admit I like to hide behind a computer screen :)

I resemble that remark!

I love creating things. I absolutely HATE having to do the things that would lead toward people buying the things I create. That's the "stopper." I've already had some success with my graphics on t-shirts, even with my inability to market them myself, so maybe she has something I need to know.

I'm hoping that what I already know about making t-shirts will translate into a book, or her approach will apply to my existing t-shirt designs. Most importantly for me; I want to succeed honestly.

All she wants for this information is ... well, the price of a good t-shirt. Hey, Melanie; wanna swap?

The things I need to know about writing e-books are simple; what topics to write on, putting it in a salable format, finding where to sell and knowing how to spread the word.

You could spend years figuring this all out - as Melanie Mendelson herself mentions: it took her five years to get from the idea to the execution, and then there was a lot of brutal hard work between the starting and the creation of a system to take what she knows and turn it into a simple formula.

I don't find writing difficult. What I DO find difficult is organizing my thoughts into a coherent piece. That's what this product promises me. I haven't yet plunked down the money, but I did take the step of setting myself up as an affiliate - sort of a skeptics leap of faith. I will be ordering the system and then following it, but money is tight and I am always looking for a great blog thread.

I thought it would be interesting to write an e-book about something I know well without this system, then order it and write the next one.

In parallel, I'm going to be goading my wife into putting her 20 years of classroom experience with special needs students in general and autism/Aspergers's students in particular to use. And heck, I may have a few insights into that myself. It seems likely that a "users manual" for employers might just come in handy.

I don't need to make a hundred K a year for this to be a successful venture for me; a third of that would do just fine. But in all humility on behalf of my wife, there are people who know far less about what she knows making that sort of money giving bad advice to parents about autism and aspergers. So, what's good advice that works worth?

That, by the way, is about the only thing about sales and marketing my father taught me that was worth remembering. Find a product you don't have to sell. Find one that you can simply plunk down on the table and open the order pad. That's your dream ticket.

That's why I signed up as an affiliate. One of the most conspicuous things about Melanie's presentation is the lack of presentation. As sales copy, it's barely ok. It makes very little effort to "sell" me. But then, if what she is saying is true - it doesn't have to.

So, that's what I'm going to establish here, in a series of posts. Does this system work as promised? If so, well, I'll be happy to attach my name to it. Plunk it down. Open the sales pad. Hand them a pen. The ideal product for the people who need it.

And no, I'm not going to tell you how it works - that would be stupid! But I'll tell you exactly how well it worked for me, and I'll tell you how well it worked for my wife.

And along the way, I'll probably try and sell you a T-Shirt.

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