Monthly Archives: February 2014

The Book Kahuna Interview on CNTV!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

Did you ever want to use your talents for something greater?

Did you ever think: What if I could start a business that would help people to create their dream books without getting fleeced?

Having worked in the publishing industry for the past 30 years and gone from assistant to manager and beyond, is it possible I might have something to offer young people in the publishing industry?

I am convinced that I have something to offer. I am convinced that there is a market for what I’m doing and that people are looking for voices to come out of the din and give them directions on the paths they are choosing.

I know there a lot of naysayers out there who look at what I’m doing as something frivolous, insignificant and lacking in any real ability for successful conclusion. To them I say, “Stand back and watch this take off!”

Anyone who wants to review my academic and work histories can do so by accessing my LinkedIn profile.

www.linkedin.com/in/donaldschmidt/

I currently have a Go-Fund-Me  campaign where you can contribute and actually receive products that I have put together. The one product is my lecture at the Denver Publishing Institute that was turned into a self-narrated video with the corresponding PowerPoint presentation, the other is the e-book that I wrote for my Master’s thesis with an added chapter on “How to load your e-book for an Amazon Kindle download”.

http://www.gofundme.com/5qk2mo

I hope you will take the time to review the attached video and see exactly what I am building and why I am building it. There have been people throughout history who have been laughed at and ridiculed (Edison, The Wright Brothers, Marconi) while building something integral and special to their particular niche in the corporate world. I know that I am on the right path because of the social media interactions and views that I am generating with my blog-posts, tweets and videos. Come along for the ride and see where this journey takes us!  If you sign up for my email list you will receive the DPI lecture as my gift to you.

CLICK IT!!—> http://tiny.cc/bookkahuna1<——- CLICK IT!!

Follow me on Twitter:        @thebookkahuna

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel:     http://www.youtube.com/user/TheSkootdad

CLICK HERE ——->     http://badasscontent.com/The-Book-Kahuna-Pages      <—- CLICK HERE!

No one said anything worth having is easy, and I am prepared to fight for every scrap that comes my way along this challenging test. I will succeed and prosper in the end!

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Blog on with Team Have-It-All!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

I started blogging about three years ago. I’ve always loved to write and I thought that this would be a new creative outlet for me to get my words out into the public spotlight. I’m not one who writes for other people’s praise, I write because I love to write. There is freedom in putting together sentences, paragraphs and chapters in a coherent order. Why not look into a blogging system that can actually help to build a following in a business while you are doing something that you love?

I started The Book Kahuna because I wanted to be in a position to help authors and young professionals new to the publishing industry be successful in their chosen professional arenas. Authors need a hand because the publishing industry is not one that can be easily picked up without a very large learning curve taking place. People young to publishing are always put in a position where they have a passion to be part of an industry that for the most part does not pay all that well. This pay scale differential is what puts young publishing professionals in a position to look at moving up the ladder as quickly as possible. I know how this works because I have seen it firsthand having started in the publishing industry at $13,000 a year in 1984. Even by 1984 standards, this amount of yearly wage was pretty pitiful. The trick is to pick up what you can at publishing stops along the way, meet people and network, and continue looking so that you can get to the corner office.

Click— http://tinyurl.com/lama53t– Click

The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing:  History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle

I Meet my Sponsor

At a CIPA (Colorado Independent Publishers Association) meeting in September, I happened to befriend my current sponsor in the Empower Network, Leslie Lane Peabody. She started to tell me that the Empower Network could actually be a good supplemental way to help me get my words out and also help to grow a thriving side business if I so desired. I resisted joining for a few months, and finally relented and joined in on one of the teleconference calls to hear what the Empower Network was all about through the team that Leslie was affiliated with “Team Have-It-All”. I was immediately struck by the camaraderie of the individuals in the group. There was a feeling that no one was going to be left behind and we were all focused on building a reliable and productive interdependent team. It was this family overview that pushed me to join and become part of this team and network.

CLICK HERE ——->    http://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret?id=The-Book-Kahuna   <—- CLICK HERE!

I have always been gifted with being able to put words to paper. When I was in college one of my English professors kept urging me to go into creative writing. In my mind I currently look at it as the times have finally caught up to me with the Internet and blogging structures. I am now able to write and be creative on my terms. This is an extremely exhilarating feeling and since I am doing this anyway, being part of the Empower Network is a side benefit to help me grow multiple streams of income. I urge you all to read the disclaimer on my blog post about any future finances and revenue streams through the Empower Network. If I can get paid to build a structure and also to help people whether in my group or outside than the Empower Network is everything I need and can be the same for you.

CLICK IT!!—> http://tiny.cc/bookkahuna1<——- CLICK IT!!

Follow me on Twitter:        @thebookkahuna

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel:     http://www.youtube.com/user/TheSkootdad

Check out the Disclaimer…

I urge you to click on the link and check out all that the Empower Network has to offer. It may not be something for you, or it may not be something that you can avail yourself of at this point in time, but just take a look and see for yourself what is transpiring with this viral blogging system.

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Amazon and Publishers: Numerology Roulette!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffbercovici/2014/02/10/amazon-vs-book-publishers-by-the-numbers/

Whenever there is a new way to do things, people and companies in the status quo begin to get upset. This is not a new development and has been going on since the covered wagon manufacturers were confronted with Henry Ford’s new transportation vehicle. I’m sure there was a spate of gnashing teeth and hand wringing as the model A’s and model T’s came off the production line. The buggy whip manufacturers were probably not very happy as well. Such is corporate life when a new model rolls around and upsets the status quo. Amazon is the new Ford Motor Company.

Amazon Corporate Model

I recently read the article in Forbes magazine by Jeff Bercovici:  Amazon Versus Book Publishers By the Numbers, and was struck by the lack of historical perspective that people have towards this love/hate relationship. To fundamentally understand the relationship between publishers and Amazon you must first realize that Amazon is not trying to be a book publisher or distributor based on the normal models. Amazon is building a business whereby books are almost a marketing device to grab customer share for purchases of everything else that Amazon sells on their website. Keeping this in mind is a difficult part of the overall Amazon/Publisher picture. There was a time a few years ago when Amazon was actually contemplating giving Kindles away to ensure market capture even though they would suffer a loss on their ROI. Any company that will give away a new electronic reading device to ensure consumer capture does not really consider themselves a book-selling company.

Some of the comments that were under this article on the Forbes website were instrumental in giving a bird’s eye-view of how the public views this spat. Most people believe that publishing companies have been in control of the situation in dealing with authors for far too long. Now with the dual realities of distribution points like Amazon being able to call the shots, and also being pushed to provide more and more bestsellers while competing with a vibrant and upstart self-publishing/independent publishing author base, the publishers are back on their heels. This may be the change in the publishing atmosphere that is necessary to even the playing field to a more author-friendly environment.

Click— http://tinyurl.com/lama53t– Click

The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing:  History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle

The Numbers

Some of the numbers from the article were very surprising to me and here are a few examples:

$5.25 billion: Amazon’s current annual revenue from book sales, according to one of Packer’s sources. That means books account for 7% of the company’s $75 billion in total yearly revenue.

19.5%: The proportion of all books sold in the U.S. that are Kindle titles. E-books now make up around 30% of all book sales, and Amazon has a 65% share within that category, with Apple AAPL -1.11% and Barnes & Noble NE -0.38% accounting for most of the balance.*

14: The number of workers Amazon employs for every $10 million in revenue it generates. For brick-and-mortar retailers, the average is 47 employees per $10 million of revenue.

1 million: The total number of copies — print, e-book and audio — sold by author Helen Bryan, whose two historical novels, “War Brides” and “The Sisterhood,” were put out by Amazon Publishing. Amazon announced this morning that Bryan is its second author, following Oliver Pötzsch, to reach the million-copy mark.

CLICK IT!!—> http://tiny.cc/bookkahuna1<——- CLICK IT!!

Follow me on Twitter:        @thebookkahuna

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel:     http://www.youtube.com/user/TheSkootdad

Some may find these numbers droll and uninteresting, but I think they tell the story of a complete change in the publishing/bookselling mindset. Amazon will not be going away anytime soon, and with any uncomfortable situation the basis for the irritation will become the norm as time moves on. This is all new and could easily be instrumental in changing the publishing landscape over the next 5 to 10 years.

And in the Future?

Whether Amazon being a major player in the book distribution model will adversely impact the publishing community, as a whole, remains to be seen. Rather than lament the fact that Amazon is in the race, publishers should be looking for new and innovative ways to sell and market their products.  Only through continued innovations and new processes can the publishing community survive and thrive in the era of Amazon.

CLICK HERE ——->     http://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret?id=The-Book-Kahuna     <—- CLICK HERE!

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Self-Publishing? You Need a 5-Tool Coach!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

The era of self-publishing and independent publishing is burgeoning around us. More people have the ability to get their stories out into public view than ever before. There are aspects of this independent publishing Mecca that need to be kept in mind for anyone who decides that their tome is worthy of public consumption.

Making a List, Checking it Twice

I’ve made a list of what I consider the five most important points to look for in a coach for anyone who is trying to self- publish or independently publish a title. Some may think that it’s easy to get a book published, but this is far from the truth. Here is my list of the five aspects necessary for a successful working relationship with a publishing coach:

  1. Editorial- The person that you deal with must have a background in checking manuscripts for clarity of writing, level of writing style and also grammatical and structure evaluation with an eagle-eye. Failure to have someone with the necessary background can be a costly mistake further on down the line. A wordsmith who has a background in English or English literature is someone who can skillfully guide your manuscript through editorial pitfalls that can make the handoff through the production cycle that much more difficult.
  2. Production- The coach that you choose should know layout and design and be able to visualize the finished product before the composition begins. Any design elements such as pull quotes, boxed text, charts, graphs, halftones, or any other element that the author is bringing into the final development phase should be addressed and analyzed prior to layout in quark or in design.
  3. Financials- A big part of what you are looking for in a publishing coach would be someone who can keep control over the spending spigot. Given the nature of the consultant /client relationship, the coach should be the point person on keeping costs streamlined and foremost in importance for the duration of the project. Without someone on your side to keep the dollar spending under control, there is very little ability to avoid a money-pit situation if your coach is not prepared for various problems that can arise. Financial analysis should be completed before the project is begun.
  4. Manufacturing- The final formats of the project will determine what happens with the manufacturing. If the title will be printed, a manufacturing professional who knows the print industry and all of the companies that can get you the best pricing should be involved. If you’re publishing coach or shepherd is not giving you all of the information on all of the printers then the possibility exists that you are not getting the best pricing for the finalization of your title. There are certain printers who excel at given trim sizes and print runs.  A digital-content specialist is also needed if your title will be loaded as an e-book.  The trick is to find these 2 experts in one person, ala The Book Kahuna!
  5. Branding -The book shepherd that you enlist to finalize your book project should also be someone who knows something about social media, branding, and marketing. The marketing of the book should be put through all Social Media channels so that there is a Facebook page to be liked, there are tweets on twitter going out through Tweet adder, there are updates pinned on Pinterest and there is a blog and a website that are continually updated with new information about the book project. Building a viral response in the social media marketplace is a must. Enlisting customers who have voiced good reviews on the title should be utilized and put in the forefront of this marketing operation.
  6. Accreditation- The person that works on your book project should have some type of training that sets them apart from others in the field. Having a Bachelors Degree in English Literature and a Masters Degree in Publishing Science would put me in a situation where I can actively look at your project from start to finish and get it completely through the process from manuscript to and through bound book/electronic book.

CLICK HERE ——->     http://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret?id=The-Book-Kahuna    <—- CLICK HERE!

 I mentioned there were five bullet points, but I added the sixth as a bonus.

Go with The Book Kahuna!

No matter whom you choose to work with to finalize your book project, make sure that you educate yourself before you decide to enlist the aid of any publishing coach. Your wallet may thank you sometime in the future.

Click— http://tinyurl.com/lama53t– Click

The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing:  History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle

CLICK IT!!—> http://tiny.cc/bookkahuna1<——- CLICK IT!!

Follow me on Twitter:        @thebookkahuna

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel:     http://www.youtube.com/user/TheSkootdad

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The Sun Will Rise!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

Many people go through life staying in relationships and work environments that are detrimental to physical and mental well-being. Why do that? The amount of time that each individual is given on the face of this planet would indicate to most that being in situations that are distressful for more periods of time is not a prescription for success.

Ask These QUESTIONS:

What if you could write your own script?

What if every day you got out of bed and blogged on a topic that you love?

What if you had the ability to reach more people with a single blog post than all the speeches ever given in the history of the modern world?

It’s all within your reach. Social media platforms have given us the ability to reach out to multitudes in far-flung areas of the globe. Your customer base and reading public does not have to be one street away, but can now be 15,000 miles away and partnering to help build your earnings Empire.

Imagine and Innovate

Imagination is what builds bridges to the future. I’ve just recently gotten involved with the Empower Network, and I am completely blown away by the team approach and good feelings that are generated by everyone who is working together towards a single goal. There are various people at different levels in this endeavor, but there are always people to lend a hand and help out and give support whenever there is a potential for combined success.

For a guy who loves to write anyway, this is a natural for me. I was always writing, deciphering, rewriting, and constructing different articles and papers in my mind even as a kid. When I went off to SUNY Potsdam one of my English professors, Professor Kelsie Harder, was always telling me that I should go into creative writing. Now being a 22 or 23-year-old kid, I had no idea about Kelsie’s credentials and where he stood within the academic community. It always strikes me now as I look back on his Wikipedia article of what a renowned and prestigious professor I had who wanted me to write. I don’t look at it as if I missed out, I look at it as technology has finally caught up with my writing abilities and now I can create for a global audience much easier, faster and with better results than I could ever have hoped for in 1984.

The Empower Network!

http://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret?id=The-Book-Kahuna

The Empower Network is not just a blogging structure, it’s a readjustment in your thinking to focus and streamline your thought patterns. You supply the content, and the EN will supply the ability to reach even more readers and consumers then would’ve been possible if you built your media platform alone. Basically you are multiplying your overall reach by a factor of 10.

http://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret?id=The-Book-Kahuna

Blog on,  Brothers and Sisters

I will be writing both blogposts for the EN network, and continuing to write blogposts for my publishing blog because the more you write the more proficient you become and the better you are at getting your words across to the people who are yearning to read them.

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Go Fund Me!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

Authors and New Publishing Professionals Need A Hero

About two months ago I decided to take the plunge and started a Go Fund Me campaign. You might be asking yourself:  “Why does a guy who’s been working in publishing for the last 30 years need to get funding?”   The answers to this question are long and varied. Let me give you the reasons in five bullet points below:

Click here to donate——–>http://www.gofundme.com/5qk2mo <——Click here to donate

1.   The basis for all transactions in a business setting are through individuals that are known, liked, and trusted. I’ve looked around at the many people who are out giving advice to new authors and I decided that the playing field needed to be put more in order so that authors can deal with someone who represents the first three tenets in this point. Everyone has a story, and everyone should not be fleeced when trying to tell their story. I believe that I have products and services that could actually help authors come to a successful conclusion in a publishing realm.  As Sy Syms always said:  An Educated Consumer is Our Best Customer!

2. Having recently completed a Masters program in Publishing Science where most of my classmates were half my age, I know that there is a shortage of mentors in the publishing field. There is a shortage of people who can give direction and help with troubleshooting projects when younger staff do not have direction and focus from upper management. The economic climate has seen publishing shed many of its middle management positions to cut costs both health and salary-wise. This brain drain has resulted in a much smaller pool of older, sage mentors in the publishing workplace. I think through my experience, writings, and Digital Products I can help young and inexperienced publishing professionals make their way to “The Corner Office.”

3. I’ve given you the nuts and bolts of what my Digital Products are all about, but now I must explain why I’ve started this campaign. It takes a good amount of money to fund a startup, especially one that is consulting-based and one that is in the publishing field. The funds that I receive will be used to build a web portal that will be the transmission point of newsletters, videos, podcasts, webinars, and a full variety of informative products that will be helpful to the two audiences listed above.

4. Having worked in the publishing industry for the past 30 years I’ve seen many varied and extensive changes that have resulted in a completely different landscape then the one that I encountered when I first stepped foot in a publishing concern in 1984. With this mass amount of changes in technology and process there is a huge part of me that yearns to give back. I’ve had my ups and downs in this industry, and right now I am in a down, but there is a new day and a new dawn and I look forward to helping people excel at those things that are dreams for them, as helping them is a dream for me!

5. With your help I can build the digital infrastructure transmission portal and get my word and products out to those who could benefit from them. I’m not asking you to take a blind leap of faith on a business proposal that could be a complete boondoggle.   I want you to be in possession of some of my products so that you will be able to see the quality of what I am putting together to help authors and new publishing professionals.

Therefore, I am proposing the following:

A.  For every donation of $100, the donor will receive my PowerPoint video presentation on the digital/electronic process for manuscript through bound book that I presented at the Denver Publishing Institute at Denver University.  This video  is a 71 minute lecture.

B.  For every donation of $50, the donor will receive a PDF of my e-book:

The Digital Electronic Revolution in Book Publishing:  History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle.

Click here to donate——–>http://www.gofundme.com/5qk2mo <——Click here to donate

Please help if you can, even small donations will make a difference.  If you cannot donate, please feel free to pass this to your friends and contacts.

Independent Publishing is the fastest growing form of content dissemination.  I can help authors educate themselves before they jump into the fray!

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Sochi Olympics: Russian Reflections!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

Street Scene in Tallinn, Estonia

Street Scene in Tallinn, Estonia

Tallinn 10004

Street Scene Tallinn, Estonia 2

Tallinn 10002

Street Scene Tallinn, Estonia 3

Tallinn 10003

Street Scene Tallinn, Estonia 4

Now that the winter Olympics has just begun in Sochi, Russia, I’ve been thinking back with nostalgia to a time when I was a freshman at SUNY Potsdam in WAY upstate New York living in Draime Extension on the fourth floor, watching the Olympics unfold before me on a black-and-white Zenith that had seen better days. None of the people living on my floor were Music Majors, they were mostly Comp Sci. with me the only History/English student, but we took great pride in the fact that our classmates and fellow students who were getting their education from the Crane School of Music were at the Olympics providing all of the music for the entire event.

St. Basil's0001

The Kremlin0001

The Kremlin

US 4- Soviet Union 3

As the Olympics started the drama was solely centered on whether Eric Heiden could win gold in all of his events. As the Olympics moved forward, the US Men’s Hockey Team started to become the focal point of the entire 1980 Lake Placid Olympics. Once the US team had made the medal round my Draime-mates and I (inclusive of Glenn, Tim, Randy, Dave, Jim, Dave M., Jim O., And Todd) all sat around watching the US Hockey Team’s meteoric rise to greatness. For the US/Soviet game, there was a huge throng of people who filled our lounge to watch. The rest of the story is history; the US beat the Soviets 4-3 and went on to beat Finland in the gold-medal game.  In 1980 I was also set to travel to Russia but the State Department alerted our Trip Leader, Dr. Steven Carol, that due to the Iranian Hostage Crisis and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, they did not recommend the travel itinerary that was proposed.  We were cancelled from our trip to Russia.

Peter and Paul Fortress0003

Peter and Paul Fortress

Dr. Carol, West Islip’s James Bond Gets Us In!

Seven years after the Olympics at Lake Placid, and three years after I left Potsdam to start my career in publishing, I had the opportunity that had eluded me in 1980 and traveled to the Soviet Union for 15 days. I was 25 years old and this was the biggest event in my life to that point. For a guy who had never been outside the United States, this was a pretty gutsy first trip. We spent five days in Tallinn, Estonia, we also spent five days in Leningrad(now reverted to St. Petersburg), and we spent five days in Moscow. Tallinn was a beautiful city that reminded me of what Germanic cities in central Europe looked like from pictures I had seen. The cultural difference between Estonia and Russia could not have been starker than in the contrast of the architecture. Also the features of the people were more central European than Eastern European, many with blonde hair and blue eyes which is not the norm in Leningrad or Moscow.

Hermitage0001

Hermitage/Winter Palace

Ah, ha ha ha ha ha… Wipe Out!

Czar's Cannon

Czar’s Cannon

The toilet paper situation was one where we had advance knowledge that we should bring rolls of toilet paper with us. We had been informed that the Soviet toilet paper was akin to sandpaper. American toilet paper must have been in high demand as one of the cleaning staff stole all of my toilet paper from my bag when I was out touring Tallinn. Luckily, a fellow trip member was nice enough to let me have an extra roll. I can commiserate with what’s going on in Sochi with the toilet restrictions. People are supposed to put the used toilet paper in a waste-bin rather than flushing it down.  We were also told to bring our own drinking water to avoid the “Trotsky Trots”.  We were told to bring mouthwash to use for brushing our teeth without putting any water on the brush.  Since Chernobyl had occurred the previous year, we refrained from drinking any Vodka as well.

Gravesite of Nikita Khruschev

Gravesite of Nikita Khruschev

Lenin In His Tomb:  Photos NO!

The people who I met on my trip were all warm and embracing. The Russian people themselves have nothing but respect and admiration for Americans. The people of Estonia were incredibly friendly and liked Americans. I was in the Soviet Union during late June and early July 1987. Mikhail Gorbachev had announced “Glasnost” in May 1987. The people were just beginning to warm up to the idea that they were allowed to have more freedoms. The KGB was still in existence and also still monitoring foreigners closely. One nighttime incident in Red Square was indicative of this fact. We were standing in the center of Red Square chatting, when a Russian national walked over and stood in the middle of our conversation smiling at us the whole time. This is a little unnerving, but not as unnerving as the incident that occurred when we went through Lenin’s tomb. I always wanted to be prepared and would keep folded toilet paper in my pocket as a precaution. The militia that guarded Lenin’s tomb was explicitly looking for people who had cameras that were not allowed to go into the tomb. These militiamen were armed with submachine guns and as my part of the line started to snake towards the entrance a militiamen came up to me and with the butt end of his submachine gun hit me on the pocket while exclaiming, “Photo-Camera?” Now one thing I can tell you without reservation is that when you get hit on the pocket with the butt end of a submachine gun you will wake up PDQ! My quick thinking response was, “No, No… Toilet paper!” as I pulled it out of my pocket.

Gravesite of Vyacheslav Molotov- No cocktail!

Gravesite of Vyacheslav Molotov- No cocktail!

Josef Stalin0001

Gravesite of Mass Murderer number 2 in the 20th Century: Josef Stalin

Back in the USSR

I love the memory of my trip to Russia and Estonia. I wish the Russian people nothing but good luck in their drive towards an evolutionary change in their government. They are good people, they are friendly people and the people themselves are not our enemy. I went to Russia because I wanted to see for myself the difference between the systems. I saw exactly what they wanted me to see, but luckily, as an American, I could read between the lines.

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Man Does Not Live By Bread Alone: A Publishing Mind and Book are Needed As Well!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

Hardship builds CHARACTER

There are times in your life when you go through hardships and you look back and say “This made me a better person by building my character.” One of those times occurred back in 2003. I’ve always wanted to be an entrepreneur and start my own business and after I was laid-off in 2001 I struck out on my own and did just that. The .com bust had occurred, many were unemployed but I was undeterred by this and thought that someone with my publishing credentials at that time could make a go of it helping small to mid-sized publishers with their manufacturing needs.

Entrepreneurship: Phase 1

Go Fund Me Campaign               Click here—– > http://www.gofundme.com/5qk2mo  <——— Click Here

This first foray into a consulting role had its pitfalls. Consulting on a one-to-one basis always meant that your return on investment needed to be high and spread out among a few different publishing concerns. Rather than building a web-portal for digital reference materials, as I am doing now, the thought never entered my mind that reaching more people would be a touchstone toward building a lucrative and informative publishing corporate structure. As it turned out, one company in particular began to take up more and more of my time. After about eight months they made the decision that the functions I was providing should be brought in-house under their corporate umbrella instead of using me in a contract position. The playing field had changed and I was caught without a backup. One of the takeaways I learned  is that you always market yourself. You continually get the word out about who you are through writing articles, blog posts, tweets, and YouTube videos. All of these are essential at this point time, but were not in existence back in 2003 for me to use.

Click— http://tinyurl.com/lama53t– Click

The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing:  History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle

Mentor-A-No-Go

One of my former supervisors had always told me that if I ever decided to move back to New York from Colorado there would be a job ready for me. With this information in mind and family ill-health as a background, I packed up my apartment and moved back to New York. When I got back to New York I was wined and dined and not given the job. Another learning experience, people are friends and mentors but when personal gain conflicts with the relationship the relationship will take a hit. Now I was back in New York, publishing capital of the world, but living in a situation where I could not commute to Manhattan because I was 100 miles out on the end of Long Island. This is where the Wenner family and their bakery in Bellport, Long Island come into the story (The Wenner Family have just recently sold the plant).

Wenner  to the Rescue

My sister had always been friends with the Wenners and I knew them as well from High School.  When I needed a position just to make ends meet they gave me a hand- UP. They knew that I would not be there as a long-term employee and they still took me on and gave me the opportunity to get back on my feet. For this help I will always be grateful to them. Now the Wenner Bread factory in Bellport Long Island employed 600 people at that time and was busy on a 24-hour basis turning out bread, rolls, and specialty breads. I worked in the tool-crib for roughly a little over a year getting parts, tools and all types of equipment that the on-site mechanics needed to keep the conveyors moving.  I was a fix-it go-fer for the company.  It was a time in my life that I will never forget and it gave me the impetus to move forward and know that “this too shall pass.”

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Follow me on Twitter:        @thebookkahuna

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Survival is the Yeast That Ensures A New Rise

It wasn’t beneath me to work in the factory.  It was not the worst experience of my life.  It was an experience that tempered me and forged a resolve to never quit, and never give up.  I do not believe in handouts from the government, but when needed it is necessary to survive. I believe in hard work, I believe in doing what you have to do to make ends meet, and I believe that everything in your life happens for a reason.

I am drinking in all that is surrounding me at this point in time because I know this will not last and a new day is rising.  Giving-Back is a huge part of what I am all about and I will be helping as many people as I can with book projects and corporate ladder-climbing through my digital materials.

Be an Experience “SPONGE”

Drink in the moment whether good or bad; there is always something to be learned from the bread you are given.

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The Modern Workplace: Talent Trumps All

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

When I founded The Book Kahuna about two years ago, I knew that I could bring a treasure-trove to the table in terms of business savvy in addition to an expert publishing mind. If I only dealt primarily with publishing issues I would be doing my readers and viewers a disservice in terms of how corporate America is incorporating talent into the publishing structure. I’ve worked at many different companies, some good some bad, but even the bad experiences had good points. There was always a learning experience to take away from any environment. Once you’ve seen the various machinations that you do not want to be a part of, you look out for those in any future position or business endeavor.

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The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing:  History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle

Driving the Talent

It was with this background in mind that I just read the article on the Forbes website by Liz Ryan: Ten Ways Companies Drive Away Talent. A thought occurred to me as I was reading this article that in many of the situations where I was employed, Ms. Ryan could’ve been looking over my shoulder, or sitting in on one of our meetings, or listening to another company meeting where only a select few got mentioned;  meeting after meeting after meeting. I want to laud Ms. Ryan’s efforts in writing this article because a few of these I have lived through and seen firsthand. I would never go into detail about which companies in my past had these traits, but even the good companies that I’ve worked at in the past had some of these traits as well. It’s very difficult when you’re dealing with people who have various skill levels and personality traits to keep an open, honest, and respectful workplace in any given corporate situation.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/lizryan/2014/02/01/ten-ways-companies-drive-away-talent/

The individual 10 items that Ms. Ryan has enumerated are:

1. Zombie-Fied Job Ads

2. Blackhole Recruiting Portals

3. Robotic Communication

4. Inflexible Time-Off Policies

5. Hear No Evil Feedback Systems

6. ScroogeTastic Compensation Plans

7. Hey, You Stole My Idea

8. Godzilla Processes

9. Constructive Sniping

10. Triumph of the Best and Brown-Nosiest

HR Ingest, Then Digest

Having been in the publishing trenches for 30 years plus, this list is pretty comprehensive and can give many HR Departments a good amount to ingest. In my personal experience, the most common of these ten occurring in the field are those from five through ten. I don’t think businesses inherently start out to try and alienate the best talent but sometimes corporate enterprises that are only marginally successful are pushing the envelope of desperation. Once upper management has hit that panic button and no new ideas or innovations are flowing into the corporate mindset, the battle will be one of an intellectual attrition as the company convulses to regain past revenue successes. As Ms. Ryan has pointed out companies that exhibit these ten negative tendencies (or some of these) are those that the best talent should avoid. There is always the possibility that an internal shift could occur and the current leadership team could be replaced with one that would address these issues, but don’t hold your breath.

Eyes Open at All Times

Depending upon your industry, it may not matter whether a company exhibits any of these tendencies when you are in job-search mode. With the sluggish economy, it’s better to have a paycheck coming in, know the score with your employment situation, and have a resume ready to go at all times. Another aspect that may preclude you from personal experience with these companies entails becoming a professional networker. Keeping in touch with industry professionals at other companies is always the best way to have a barometer of what companies are good and what companies to stay away from.

I think Ms. Ryan has really hit the nail on the head with this article and I recommend that everyone take a look. It’s always nice to know the telltale signs before you walk into a bad situation.

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Speech-To-Text Recognition Software: Writing Made Simple!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

Now as I may have mentioned in a blog post before, I am definitely a gadget guy. I think technology is here to help us in any way, shape or form and to make various actions in our lives much easier than in days past. I am not the greatest typist in the world, and when it comes to writing blog posts it could take me roughly 2 hours to put down a couple of hundred words and get them up on my blog. I’ve been thinking about using some of the speech to text recognition software that is out on the market to speed the process.

I Speak, Therefore I Am

I’m not here to endorse any products but I just wanted to go through some of the occurrences as I have been using various software products to get to a finished blog post. Now in going through the Laptop Millionaire’s methodology, Mark Anastasi suggested that the speech-to-text software to use is the free Audacity software that you can download very easily. Unfortunately I was unable to get the Audacity software to download and extract on my laptop. So much for using Audacity as my speech-to-text software of choice.

My best friend advised me that if I had Microsoft Office 2007 there was built-in speech-to-text recognition software within the office utilities. I was overjoyed to hear this and thought that all of my problems would be solved by using this tool in the Microsoft Office Suite of utilities. I went into control panel, found the ease of access tab, then found the speech-to-text recognition and started to set up my microphone for immediate use. There might be an issue with this particular office tool being from the 2007 Microsoft Office Suite instead of the 2010 Microsoft Office Suite. The tool itself in the software may have been advanced to be more receptive to understanding particular words and phrases  in the 2010 version than in the 2007 version. I found myself continuously dictating and proofing lines, which was a drag on the time it takes to get a 500 to 700 word blog post completed. I knew that if I got to the point where I could just speak and my words would be written I could greatly increase the speed with which I completed blog posts and I could get them out for public viewing in half the time.

Rhymes with “Wagon”

A few months ago I started to see commercials on cable television about a new speech-to-text dictating software called Dragon. The speech to text recognition in the commercials gave me the impression that this software was highly skilled at picking up all the nuances of any and all dictated speech patterns. There are many products where the commercials are not truly reflective of the product in use, but after 2 to 3 months of watching and struggling with the Microsoft speech-to-text software I decided to take the plunge and pick up the Dragon software. Since I am in the process of doing 40 blog posts in 40 days, I thought the time was right to kickstart my dictation process and get my blog posts completed in a much quicker fashion. I could not have made a better decision.

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The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing:  History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle

After initial installation from a downloaded file, the Dragon software had me read through a couple of passages of text at varying degrees of difficulty.  The first one was John F. Kennedy’s Inaugural Speech, and the other being an excerpt from a Dilbert spin-off book about Dogbert’s management style. After completing these two and training my dictation software I can honestly say I’ve found the way to knock off blog posts in a very quick and succinct fashion. I now have the ability to spend a weekend to write the better part of an e-book that I can now place for sale on Amazon. I can knock off 10 articles very quickly. I can use my dictation software to write articles and copy for outside individuals.

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The Future is NOW

Dictation software like Dragon is not an option in this day and age for anyone who is going to be writing and authoring content for mass dissemination. It is not an option because it is a necessity.  I am extremely happy with the software.

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