Resources to Help you Put Together an eBook

Putting together an eBook for the first time is not an easy process and if you don’t know what you’re doing it can be very overwhelming.  I know for sure that if I hadn’t had a guide throughout the whole process I wouldn’t have made it this far. This is what I’ve been using so far on my little secret project, that I told you about a few days ago.

I know some people that are new to the game have thought about creating their own eBook products, so today I just wanted to share with all of you some of the resources that have helped me put together a good eBook from the beginning.

My list of eBook Resources:

Pat Flynns’ eBooks the Smart Way: Pats’ eBook guide really was the first tool I used to help me get started. He really makes it easy and it takes you through the process of writing the book from the beginning to the end. The best part from this guide was how simple it was to follow and it’s a free guide. I strongly recommended to anyone thinking of writing an eBook the first time. If you just go to his site, which I’ve linked to, you can download it for free in the sidebar. Go get it!

Men with Pens’ How to Write a Good eBook: You know the one that doesn’t suck: The title says it all if you ask me. This was actually a blog post by Taylor Lindstrom from men with pens. I don’t know him that much but I know the content in this blog is awesome! The reason you should check this out is, it’s short, but it still provides excellent information for someone that doesn’t have an idea where to get started.

The Comprehensive Paint-by-numbers Guide to Writing and Publishing Your Ebook: This small guide, I found at Problogger.net. It’s been fairly useful again even though it only covers about 16 points in the post. I would say that if you wanted to read only one guide, Pats’ would be it, but this guide at least gives you a breakdown of the whole process. If you want a pretty straightforward guide to producing and writing an eBook this would be it.

You should write an eBook: Before I read this I wasn’t sure if I wanted to write an eBook, after reading this from one of my favorite authors/entrepreneurs I knew it was time to get things done. I’m not here to convince you to write an eBook, but if you’d like a reason to write one, this might convince you.

Okay as I move along the process of writing this eBook I’ll keep you posted. For now just enjoy these great guides and resources, I know they’ll help you.

If you have any question at all just ask, I’m getting a ton of experience writing my first eBook and if you need my help I will do what I can. You can email me, tweet me, whatever makes you more confortable. If anyone has any other links and ideas to share, leave them in the comments below, I’m sure someone would appreciate them when they see this page.

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Thoughts of Writing an eBook: Free or Not

So let’s begin at the beginning. I’ve noticed lately that everywhere I read people are starting to come out with an eBook. Some free, others not really. As I was writing I was also thinking about the decision of selling my eBook or just putting it out there for free. Here are some of the thoughts that have gone through my silly brain:

“If I charge something people are going to think it’s worth something, but if I don’t, they might think it’s not as valuable.”

“If I give it away for free maybe less people will download it for that same reason (it’s not worth something, since it’s free)”

All these “ifs” run through my head and the more I think about it, I start telling myself you just need to go with your gut. Ship it! So I think that’s just what I am going to do, put it out for free. I’ve realized that money is NOT the reason why I am writing this eBook anyway. What really motivates me to write this eBook are a few reasons:

  • I want to have my own product
  • Help people
  • Become an expert (eventually)

And yes, later down the road make a some income.

If you’ve been contemplating this thought of writing a free eBook I suggest you ask yourself this question:

Why write an eBook?

In most cases your first thought will be to make money, but I don’t think that will be a strong motivation because how can you possibly know if people will actually buy it?

When I say motivation, I mean what is making you want to spend hours putting ink to paper until you complete that eBook. If you can find that why, the how will become easy.

The biggest reason I did not write an eBook before?

It’s simple; because I had no idea of what I wanted to write about. Nothing really came to me naturally, and I didn’t feel confident enough to write about what I’ve been writing about. One of the biggest reasons people will read an eBook I think is because it’s something they WANT, so if I didn’t have something to give that readers WANT I knew nobody (not even my dog that I don’t have) would read it.

As you can see, picking a topic to write about is not that simple. The process can take time and you really need to know what you’re talking about, so you don’t look like a fool (Mr. T voice). You could easily just research the heck about something and synthesize the information, but would that really be an ethical thing to do? Of course not, that’s why I didn’t choose that route. I wanted to write a guide with my own words and my own experiences. I wouldn’t want to ruin my reputation online as a phony. And neither should you!

How I choose my topic

To be honest, I didn’t really have a plan. I just happened to be talking to some friends’ offline and they were hammering with a bunch of questions like…

…why do you… and how can you… where do you??? Etc…

So I came home and eventually a light bulb came up on my head like in the cartoons, (and I thought) I wonder how many other people offline are asking those questions. That’s when I dropped everything down and grabbed ink and paper and started to mind map everything and paste ideas into my little red moleskin.

The good thing is that I was familiar with the topic and I knew I was an expert to at least somebody, so why not share some of my knowledge with them. The idea of just writing something for a group of people has grown into something bigger and better obviously.

A question that can help you come up with a topic is; what do I know that my friends don’t? or how can I help someone do something they don’t?

If you begin to answer those two simple questions, you’ll come up with a basket of ideas that you can put into action, in this case into an eBook.

It has helped me and I believe it can help you get started in your first eBook if it’s something you’ve been thinking about doing too. If you have any questions or ideas about the process of putting an eBook together for the first time, I’m curious. Send me a tweet, or an email. Or just leave a comment I’ll respond when I can.

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Customer Love | Simply Awesome-ness

Some people talk, other people actually give! I know a guy like that. If you haven’t heard of him yet on the blogosphere then you’ve been hiding under a rock (that was cliché) I know. Anyway this is just a short update to let you know if you haven’t about #CustomerLove—the ebook!!

It’s by my friend David Cran-fripping-Dall and LaVonne Ellis. Hope he doesn’t hate me for changing his Last Name.

After spending an entire day looking at the amazing effort that was put into this ebook I couldn’t think of anything better than to share some love back.

You’re probably thinking since it’s free its got no value—nooooo absolutely the opposite. #customerlove blew me away. Even though I kept up with the posts on the blog every other day it was to flipping cool how it came out. It was like looking at new content.

I can sit here and tell you everything that you’ll get out of it, but I won’t. This is just some of the great information that I loved about it:

  • Make your people (customers) heroes, and they’ll love you for it
  • Remember that people like to connect with humans
  • Your goal is to develop a long term relationship with your customer

…plus much-much-and-much more.

Hey if you like it, do me a favor…

Don’t worry it doesn’t involve money. Just spread the love, share #customerlove –the ebook with someone else.

Oh BTW, here’s the link to go get it. “Make them love you”

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Book Review|He Will Teach You to be Rich

I probably don’t even have to introduce him, but I will because he likes to be introduced WELL according to what I’ve learned from him so far in his book.

Friends this is Ramit Sethi…

Who is he?

Ramit is the author of Iwillteachyoutoberich.com, and the NY Times Best Seller book too. He’s also an entrepreneur, speaker and graduate of Stanford University. I hope that was a good introduction Ramit?

I must say he’s made everything so simple, I took finance classes in college and I don’t remember finance being this easy to understand. For someone on their mid-twenties looking for a good personal-finance mentor I can recommend Ramit enough. I’ve only read a few chapters and I’ve done more in one week than I ever did before with my finances.

I’ve always wanted to start saving and investing but I never really knew where to start. I thought that I needed to hire someone to do that for me and always assumed that it would cost me too much. With Ramit’s book- IT’S FREE!

Why should I care?

Do you want to be rich? Then you should care. I’ve always understood that rich people invest and save their money. I know—I know… you need money to invest and you don’t have much, right? Well good, you don’t need much to get started. I learned that I didn’t need to have $50,000 or something crazy to get started. Just a few hundred to $1000 will do, my friends.

The reason I’m telling you about this is because if you read my blog you’re probably around my same age or close and you’ve probably not opened a savings or investment account and never have even thought about it.(No offense, I haven’t either) Well it’s time to take those small steps Ramit talks about and just START! If you’re young even BETTER, because you’ll probably make some mistakes and it’s better now that you’re young than later. Every book I’ve ever read about personal-finance always said it was better to start investing and saving as young as possible and I’m gonna repeat what has been said…Let’s do this!

Should I get this book?

Absolutely! It’s so easy to follow and understand even if you’re NOT the smartest person like me. It only takes six weeks to complete the program and become financially independent. Okay I don’t want to sound like a snake oil salesman, so read the following and decide:

Would you rather be rich or sexy?

I would say that Ramit has done an excellent job in providing useful tips that even a Colombian (me) can understand it and follow it. You’ll find some of the stuff on his site, but it looks like there’s a lot of fresh ideas here.

In the beginning of the book he makes it very clear of what should happen after you read his book, take a peek:

“After reading this book, you’ll be better prepared to manage your finances than 99 percent of other people in their twenties and early thirties. You’ll know what accounts to open up, ways not to pay your bank extra fees, how to invest, how to think about money, and how to see through a lot of the hype that you seen on TV an in magazines every day.”

What I liked the most about this book is how at the end of each chapter Ramit literally takes you through a step-by-step process of what to do. He even tells you what to say and how to say some things when you call your credit card companies to lower your interest rates really cool shit! He really knows how to negotiate a deal.

Six weeks that’s it!

Here’s how he puts this program into place by week:

  • First week optimizing credit cards and improving your credit history.
  • Second week how to find great bank accounts, and how to negotiate away fees.
  • Third week open a 401(k) and/or a Roth IRA.
  • Fourth week he helps you figure out how much you’re spending, and then helps you figure out how to make your money go where you want it to go.
  • Fifth week you basically automate everything so that it works smoothly.
  • Last week is the investing part— how to diversify your investment and learn asset allocation to meet your investment goals.

The target market for I will teach you to be rich

The main reason I’m reviewing this book is because it’s on my age bracket. With that said, you should not buy it if you’re not 35 years old or younger, because I don’t think that’s who its intended for. He even says it on the book:

“This is a great guide to money management for twentysomethings — and everybody else.”

I think it’s a great book and it offers great advice for young people like me and others who fit this market.

If you’re just getting out of college, thinking about getting married, buy a new car and get into all sorts of debt I recommend you read this before you do it. I will teach you to be rich (affiliate link) is really a great book, probably one of the best fit personal finance books I’ve read. Definitely worth reading!

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A Little Secret Project I’ve Been Working On

If I confuse you with this post—my bad. This post will have a little bit of everything. I’ve been away for a while I know, but it’s absolutely your fault guys. Why do I blame you? Well… I’ve been working on a little project for all you guys (more on that later). I think you’ll like it and forgive me for disappearing for so long…

…Before I go back to work I just wanted to keep you posted on what I’ve been up to and give you a little something-something.

So what have I been doing? I’ve been looking at what I do and what I want to do in the future. I’ve been reading a lot of my favorite blogs a lot. But mostly working on my first e-book (my little project), it’s been a really exciting experience. Due to it’s something that I’ve wanted to do, but really never put the time, effort or thought into it.

I don’t know why but I’m going to assume there’s a lot of people that have been in the same situation as me, so I figured why not give you an idea of what I’ve gone through in the process of producing the 10,000 words I’ve put on paper so far.

But before we move on…

What’s an E-Book for those who don’t know?

If you ask Wikipedia this is what you get:

“An electronic book (also e-book, ebook, digital book) is a text- and image-based publication in digital form produced on, published by, and readable on computers or other digital devices.”

But this is not just an e-book. This is my story and what I’ve done so far and a little-tiny-bit more than that. It’s my own personal way of saying and writing about a particular topic. It’s a lot of hours of work, more like days and sleepless nights. OKAY, OKAY no need to exaggerate. Sorry I get out of hand sometimes. But in all truth I have put some work into this tiny little project.

Why am I writing it?

I’m not writing it because everyone on the web says “you need to give something, to get peoples’ emails—so I can get RICH” that’s not the type of person I am. The biggest reason I did it was because I got some friends that were interested in the topic and I thought, hmmm how could I explain to all these people what they’re asking me. Oh I know, let’s write it down on a piece of paper and make copies and mail it to them. Ah NO! that would take forever. Aha! I’m going to write an e-book and that way everyone can read it on the web too. Cool that’s exactly what I am going to do. (BTW, that’s the conversation I had with ME)

Shit that happens when writing an e-book

Man, where do I start? I’ll tell you something about me, I’m restless. I don’t even know how I can sit down and write a paragraph, let alone 1,000 words per day. What’s the secret?  Having a big enough WHY, I mean big-big-big WHY. Anyone can write an e-book, the how is not a problem. You just read How to Write a Good eBook – You Know, the Kind that Doesn’t Suck and you do it. But if there’s not a big enough reason WHY you’re doing it, it’s not going to come thru.

  • You won’t feel like doing it—damn flipping lizard brain!
  • Nothing will come to you when you sit down to write
  • Your mom will call you and ask you for a favor (okay, maybe it will happen to you)
  • You’ll think, ah!!! no one will read my stuff
  • The computer will crash
  • You’ll forget to save that last 1,000 words you wrote

Moral of the story—shit will happen!

Knowing all these things gets rid of all your fears if you’re going to write one too. When it’s all set and done I know it’s my will to finish this e-book no matter what happens in between. Like someone once told me “its life” what can you do. Here’s the things I’ve done to swerve around the STUFF that happens:

  • Woke up early in the morning to work on it (5:45 a.m.)
  • Went to bed after I’ve actually written 1,000 minimum
  • Followed a schedule everyday
  • Gave myself a break on the weekend
  • The thought that I need to ship soon

Just those five things have helped me be more productive when writing it especially the last one. Don’t let “the resistance” as Seth Godin calls it stop you from doing what needs to be done. Just start something, even if it starts with “once upon a time” or at least entire paragraphs, then you’ve started.

It took me a long time to put this together, but here I am finally telling you about it. Hopefully so I can feel pressure of finishing, because if I don’t I’ll look like an ASS and nobody likes looking like that.

You’ve been talking about this e-book, but what is it about?

Basically it’s a manifesto, a guide, and a little more. I think it will help a ton of people understand this “online thing” as I call it. So many people are confused about it, and so many ASS****** are trying to get peoples’ money by promising shit that isn’t true. The point of this is to help people with no idea of how people make money on the web. I say it how it is, and I don’t hide anything. It’s basically my journey to location independence plus how to DIY.

Hope that explains why I’ve been missing for so long. I’m gonna be more active for the next few weeks that’s for sure. Mostly sharing work great people on the web are doing. Until the next time… take care and keep an eye open for what’s coming.

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