Is Anything Really Free?

We’ve all heard, “There’s no free lunch!” To a large extent that true, but not always. For example, there’s some great software applications that are free with no catches. A great example of that is Open Office, an excellent office productivity software and GIMP, a great graphic software to name just two that don’t attempt to sell you anything. And, I’ve attended some valuable webinars and tutorials that were free even though they did try to sell me something at the end. I made good use of the information and purchased nothing. I’m sharing this because I’m encountering something interesting.

For the past two weeks I have been placing posts on Facebook, Linkin, Twitter, and my blogs for a free self publishing workshop that’s coming up on January 28th in Austin. I placed one on this blog also. The workshop is in a small room so I can only accommodate ten attendees. At first, I thought because it was free my problem would be selecting ten from many. Well, here we are on the 20th, eight days before the event, and I have three.

I’m trying to figure out what’s happening. Perhaps no one believes it’s free because there’s a catch to everything. That’s often true but the only catch with this workshop is that I can only take ten. The workshop is free, short (three hours), and includes two books that cover everything in case you forget something. You can check them out at http://booksfor.publishingsimplified.com/

Maybe they can’t believe that I would do this for free and I must have some motive that will come as a surprise at the workshop. Well, I do have a motive but it’s no surprise. I’m an independent publisher and my business depends on authors accepting and trusting my expertise, reliability, and honesty. By conducting this workshop I get to know the attendees and share my expertise with them and they may tell their author friends about me perhaps bring me some future business. It’s even possible that an attendee may contact me for help in the future but there is nothing to purchase at the workshop nor any sales pitch. It’s the same as this blog and my other blogs and websites, just an opportunity to share my expertise so others get to know and trust me.

I guess it’s also possible that the response has been poor because I don’t promise that publishing a book will make you rich or even increase your income. I definitely want attendees but not enough to make those statements. No one knows what your book or any book will do once it’s published.

I hope to have ten to make it worthwhile but the workshop will go on regardless of the final number. If you interested or know anyone who may be please check it out at http://workshop.publishingsimplified.com/ or email me at bill@positive-imaging.com. Thanks.

Reasons For Writing A Book?

Why do you want to write a book? There are probably as many answers as there are writers. For me there are three reasons and the main one is that I enjoy writing about the things I do. The second reason is because I enjoy teaching others how to do the things I have learned to do well. It feels good to pass along valuable knowledge to others. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, I do it for the money. I enjoy selling my books and when people are willing to pay for the information I write about it seems to add value.

Would I continue to write even if my books didn’t sell? I have no doubt that I would. Perhaps it wouldn’t be as much fun but that wouldn’t stop me. Sitting at a computer and putting down your thoughts and ideas for others to read is too much fun to stop just because the money doesn’t come. Anyway, that’s just me.

What about you? Why do you write? Is it about profit or do you just write for the enjoyment. Or, are you like me and both are important to you. I believe that just wanting to write is reason enough. There is no need to justify writing a book or anything else if it is what you want to do.

Backing Up All Your Work

As an IT professional I deal with computer problems everyday but it still surprises me when individuals lose years of work because of a serious computer crash. In many of these cases backup methods are readily available but simply not used. While most large businesses realize the consequences of lost data and have extensive backup methods that even include multiple location replication, individuals still seem to believe that computers, laptops, and tablets are invincible and don’t require backup. After losing hundreds of pages of your inspired writing you will certainly realize the folly of that belief. Hopefully you won’t wait until that happens to start backing up your work. More on backup in my next post.

Welcome To Self Publishing Simplified

Independent (self) publishing is here to stay but some still believe that only traditional publishers put out good books. This has never been true but there was a time when only traditional publishers had pockets deep enough to absorb the cost of publishing books.

Print on demand, Kindle and the Internet changed all that. Now anyone with an interesting idea or topic, the necessary knowledge and skills, plus a small budget can publish and sell a book worldwide.

Over the years many great writers started their careers by self publishing. Today independent publishing is popular because it’s affordable and fewer traditional publishers than ever are willing to consider books by unknown authors.

When they do publish an unknown, he or she is expected to take on the lion’s share of the marketing for a tiny share of the profit. As with a self published book, the marketing, which can be difficult and costly, falls squarely on the author’s shoulders.

Another issue with traditional publishers is their direct line to retail bookstores. This can be a good thing for books that get off to a quick start. However, these books are returnable for a refund which can be problematic for author advances.

Since authors do the writing and the marketing anyway, why give a publisher such a large share of the income. Don’t you think authors should be getting the lion’s share of the profit? I can tell you first hand that self published authors can make 40 to 70 percent and more on each sale and using POD and KDP methods their investment is limited mostly to marketing.

The goal of this blog is to support authors in self publishing their books and ebooks. I will be posting often and I encourage you to comment regularly and don’t hesitate to ask questions. Send them to bill@positive-imaging.com. Thanks.