First of all, why should we need to retire? If we are not tired in the first place, why re-tire? There is so much we can do beyond 60.
The more important question is – “Why are we so tired that we would want to be retired?”
Photo from an Arizona retirement center. Is this really worthy of a dream?
Generally we are tired because we are working too much at something that does not sufficiently fulfill rather than having fun, doing what we love AND earning in the process. This site focuses on ways to create micro businesses that earn but more importantly are gratifying, fun and serving the mission you feel needs to be filled.
This is the first time in recorded history when the value of life’s experience at retirement age is more valuable than the cost of obtaining it. Our best, most profitable, most enjoyable and helpful career should be after age 50, 60 or even 70.
There are numerous economic scenarios that could ruin retirement for many. Inflation, a falling greenback, another market crash or recession. Any of these could doom traditional retirement plans. The timing of these events are beyond our control.
That’s okay because diversification into a business that fulfills and serves can be better than stocks and bonds, cash and gold… all put together.
Right now…cash pays nothing. Bonds are quite sure to lose purchasing power. Gold could rise or fall. Shares are at an all time high which creates a problem of timing. They could fall.
A reader sent a note that highlighted the importance of invest timing for retirement.
“Gary, is there not one period in each person’s life when market timing is very relevant? —- when they are leaving the 40-hour work force (and predictable if limited paycheck) and have to begin 401K and IRA withdrawals and pay taxes. Is a different strategy required for distribution than is required for accumulation?
On Market Timing
My reply was: “We can never tell what markets will do in the short term. No matter what the market has done, it may do more of the same…or it may not. Looking for value is better than trying to predict tops and bottoms. In the long run…only the long run is reliable.”
When we reach the distribution stage in our investments, we cannot always afford to wait years for our investment to bring a profit.
If we have $500,000 in a 401K and need $20,000 per annum to retire this requires a 4% withdrawal. If the market (and our shares) drop 30%, our $500,000 shrinks to $350,000. Then we have to draw almost 6% to gain our $20,000 a year. If a market stays weak for three years, the $350,000 has been depleted so there is less capital to make up the loss when the market recovers.
In addition, because of inflation each year, the $20,000 is likely to buy less. Even more demand may be placed on a diminished portfolio.
What we do not know exactly is when markets will rise or fall. What we do know about market timing is that periods of high performance are generally followed by periods of low performance.
This is especially true in today’s highly leveraged world. Today, currency markets can be leveraged 100/1. Stock markets can be leveraged 10/1. When panic strikes, markets can go down fast. Even the safest investments can drop very quickly.
This means that periods of high performance may be followed by periods of sudden, dramatic low performance.
Can our retirement depend entirely on the stock market? If there is retirement danger in equity markets, cash, bonds and gold, what can we do?
Having a micro business is a great approach. A Sunday Times article “Over 50, and Under No Illusions” by Diego Ibarra Sanchez helps us see why. Here is an excerpt: It’s a baby boomer’s nightmare. One moment you’re 40-ish and moving up, the next you’re 50-plus and suddenly, shockingly, moving out — jobless in a tough economy.
Too young to retire, too old to start over. Or at least that’s the line. Comfortable jobs with comfortable salaries are scarce, after all. Almost overnight, skills honed over a lifetime seem tired, passé. Twenty- and thirty-somethings will gladly do the work you used to do, and probably for less money. Yes, businesses are hiring again, but not nearly fast enough. Many people are so disheartened that they’ve simply stopped looking for work. Though there is no single path, there are success stories that offer hope.
The article shares success stories about boomers without jobs who became a franchisee, a real estate renovator and a networker.
Plus the article tells of this inventor.
Photo from New York Times Magazine (1)
The article says: Jeffrey Nash, shown with Donna Sanchez, invented the Juppy, a sling that helps children learn to walk.
After 15 years selling men’s clothing for a national retailer, Jeffrey Nash, 58, was earning $90,000 a year and was often the top salesman in his company. But as the recession deepened, he began referring his customers to struggling co-workers. His sales commissions took a hit.
“I kind of softened up,” he says. “My sales went down because I was sharing them.”
His income fell to $65,000. And as shoppers became more cautious during the recession, he knew that it would soon fall even further.
“I was doomed,” he says. “I knew I had to come up with an idea.”
Mr. Nash, who lives in Las Vegas, had invented a device he called the Juppy, a sling that helps toddlers learn to walk more safely and confidently.
“I had already touched base with a patent attorney and had started the ball rolling,” he says. He took three weeks of vacation to see if he could make a go of his invention, telling only a few people about his plans. Their opinions were “really negative,” he recalls.
Undaunted, he drove to Los Angeles and San Diego, selling the Juppy from his trunk and on a televised sales show, and earning $12,000 in three weeks.
“I never went back to work,” he says.
Investing $35,000 of his savings and an additional $9,000 from his father and a friend, Mr. Nash had the device manufactured in China.
“The transition was simple,” he says. “If I’d stayed in my old job, I was going to lose in the end. I was done. I needed a massive change. I needed income of several hundred thousand dollars. I knew I had to take a risk, a massive risk.”
That included selling his home — for $200,000 less than he had paid for it, because of the downturn — and renting a house instead.
“I used to drive a Lexus,” he says. “I let that go. I don’t need it anymore.”
Mr. Nash has since sold $500,000 worth of his product, netting $200,000 in two and a half years, an annual average of $80,000. He is relieved, and proud of having successfully leapt from the familiar into the unknown.
“It’s unbelievable to me that at my age I recognized a need and filled it,” he says.
“We’re having a hard time filling orders right now, we have so much demand.”
Here are three benefits of a micro business.
First, from a timing point of view, we can start any time and work through the ups and downs. Our own business can adapt more quickly to our circumstances because it is under our control, not the whims of a market.
Secondly, a business integrates our energy with an investment which provides maximum income as well as the best tax benefits.
Third, because this is OUR business, we can do what we love…serving, satisfying, earning and having fun all in one package. We can find and achieve your destiny with a pinnacle career.
In my mind our own business is not an encore…but the real performance. Our past careers were just the warm up act. What many call an encore is not the end at all. This is the beginning of a pinnacle career.
Improve retirement economics through writing.
The careers we create in our 50s, 60s, 70s and even 80s use our greatest experience and the growth of wisdom. These can be our pinnacle careers. The careers can earn more, be truly fulfilling and provide a greater service to mankind.
I prefer to think of careers for those aged 50 and beyond as pinnacle careers. These careers are what we are here for. We could call them our destiny careers.
Merri and I share two passions…. writing and fixing up old things. We love seeing through the grime and neglect in old places that have a grace and solid reputation shrouded in time. There is a tasteful architecture from a passed by style that used to require individual care, pride and effort… artisans and laborers working side by side carving, painting and polishing masterpieces atop solid engineering.
Our latest fixer-upper venture…a cottage 101 years old…and still handsome in her stately charm.
Writing is fixing up as well. There is plenty of grime and neglect in society that requires washing away with words. Books, reports, articles, courses and magazines that share ideas or sell products and service are architecture in words, art and English. They are carving in syntax and polishing in function and form.
The foundations of all writing are ideas. They support a framework of love, hate and desire and all the emotions throbbing through the heartbeat of humanity.
Writing builds shelters against the storms of stagnation and creates progressive energy that artistically leads us from the tyrannical grasp of existing thought into new dimensions and ideas.
Marco Polo photo from Wikipedia.com
Marco Polo changed the thought process of the Western World through words.
Marco Polo was a merchant and an explorer. He saw wonders when he ventured into the Eastern World. When he shared these wonders, it altered the entire way that mankind in Europe lived from the introduction of gun powder to paper money. Marco was able to share these innovations due to his writing!
Biography.com says of Marco Polo’s exploits (bolds are mine): Just a few years after his return to Venice, Marco commanded a ship in a war against the rival city of Genoa. He was eventually captured and sentenced to a Genoese prison, where he met a fellow prisoner and writer named Rustichello. As the two men became friends, Marco told Rustichello about his time in Asia, what he’d seen, where he’d traveled and what he’d accomplished. His stories were soon committed to paper and eventually published as a book called The Description of the World.
The book made Marco, who was released from prison in 1299, a celebrity. It was printed in French, Italian and Latin, becoming the most popular read in Europe. But few readers allowed themselves to believe Marco’s tale. They took it to be fiction, the construct of a man with a wild imagination. The work eventually earned another title: Il Milione (“The Million Lies”). Marco, however, stood behind his book. He also moved on with his life. After his release from prison, he returned to Venice, where he married, raised three daughters and, for some 25 years, carried on the family business. Marco died at his home in Venice on January 8, 1324. As he lay dying, friends and fans of his book paid him visits, urging him to admit that his book was fiction. Marco wouldn’t relent. “I have not told half of what I saw,” he said.
Marco’s desire to earn more money, his travels and adventures were the foundation of his destiny, but his writing was his legacy. Here is one more excerpt from Biography.com.
In the centuries since his death, Marco Polo has received the recognition that failed to come his way during his lifetime. So much of what he claimed to have seen has been verified by researchers, academics and other explorers. Even if his accounts came from other travelers he met along the way, Marco’s story has inspired countless other adventurers to set off and see the world. Two centuries after Marco’s passing, Christopher Columbus set off across the Atlantic in hopes of finding a new route to the Orient. With him was a copy of Marco Polo’s book.
Writing to sell is one of the most powerful forms of marketing. Marketing is what we do in every aspect of life… every day.
The heart of all events requires marketing. We market ourselves, our business, our thoughts, ideas and beliefs all the time. In business, marketing covers strategic planning, product design, packaging, distribution, advertising, public relations, promotions and sales. Marketing is the process by which anything and everything – product, service, idea, person, is introduced and promoted. Without marketing, we may be or have something great, but no one knows it.
All marketing begins with writing, whether, a speech, picture, video, movie, advertisement, announcement, banner, jingle, song.
The birth place is in the written word.
Consider writing as one part of your pinnacle career.
Merri and I urge you to unlock your creativity so that it can lead you toward your destiny that is fulfilled in your pinnacle career.
How We Can Help
We offer an online course. Self Fulfilled – How to Write to Sell.
Seven Secrets of Self PublishingHere are seven secrets that can help you earn as a writer and self publisher.
Join me as a wirter and self publisher.
These secrets are important because growing numbers of unknown writers have become famous writers and rich by self publishing over the internet.
Take for example Amanda Hocking. After self publishing her first book at Amazon.com in the spring of 2010 she became one of the the best-selling e-authors. In the next year her book sales grossed approximately $2 million.
In 2011, St. Martin’s press paid Hocking more than $2 million for the world English rights of a four book series. In 2013 she sold another series to St. Martin’s Press.
E.L. James is another such story. She sold 250,000 copies of “50 Shades” via Createspace and Amazon.com before publishers noticed her and published the erotic romance trilogy Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, and Fifty Shades Freed which sold over 70 million copies worldwide, setting the record as the fastest selling paperback of all time.
Hugh Howey is a third example. He was working for $10 an hour in a book store when he self published his novel Wool, typing in a storage room during his lunch breaks. Soon he was earning over $100,000 a month on Amazon. This helped secure a six-figure book deal from Simon & Schuster, and an option for film by Ridley Scott, director of Blade Runner and Alien.
These are great inspirations.
I know Hugh. This type of success could not happen to a more deserving and talented person. He deserves every accolade he receives and he does not take a bit of this success for granted. Hugh is pouring enormous energy into be worthy of his readership. We’ll share some of Hugh’s secrets in a moment.
Neither you or I are likely to have this type of success. That’s not bad. The good news is… we do not need this type of success to have a rich and fulfilled lifestyle. Self Publishing offers so many opportunities that one can have a life that most people only dream of as a journeyman writer, instead of a super star.
May I hastily add that the path to stardom begins as a journeyman… so the journeyman’s path brings success without stardom… but can also lead to stardom.
What most success stories like those of Hugh Howey or E.L James or Amanda Hocking rarely share is the many hours of writing they devoted before their self published book sales soared. They were journeymen first… stars second.
The sevens secrets are the journeyman secrets… call them a writer’s armory of tools that allows almost anyone to create successful publications for income and fulfillment.
Take Merri’s and my publishing business as an example.
Merri and I are not writing stars. We are journeymen who have for 40 years, year in a year out, earned solid income writing and self publishing dozens of publications about multiple subjects.
Some years that income has been more than solid… over a million dollars. Yet in terms of stardom, we are hardly known.
In a moment you’ll see why that’s fine for us and probably for you too. First some history.
Merri became involved in self publishing over 40 years ago… first helping a veterinarian publish a book on a very specific market… animal acupuncture. Then she showed a needle point artist how to sell more books to an even more specific audience… “needle point enthusiasts” about her needle point work to an audience larger than the population of the city she lived in. This led Merri to eventually become Executive Editor of an award winning magazine in Florida.
My story allowed me to work and live from Hong Kong to London to Europe to Eastern Europe, then the Caribbean and then Ecuador… making millions in the process of following my adventures… having fun… while helping a large readership adapt to a rapidly changing world.
Self Publishing has created exactly the lifestyle we desire allowing us to span the world, have homes in Hong Kong, England, a farm in North Carolina, orange groves and home in Florida… hotel and condos in Ecuador and work that we love and feel has meaning and purpose.
Self Publishing has become a new business art form and the seven secrets can help you start your own self publishing business now.
Everything in publishing is new and exciting and changing. Publishing is being recreated by the wonderful power of destructive technology. Everything seems new… except the seven secrets. Change in the publishing industry is disturbing many. We love it due to these seven secrets we call the 7Ps. The 7 Ps are so fundamental to writing and publishing that new technology enhances rather than reduces their power.
The First P is Passion.
Whatever your passion, you can immerse yourself in it AND create income with self publishing. This can be your direct ticket to the kind of fulfillment you’ve always wanted in life. Whether you want to travel the world or live as a recluse, work 12 hours a day or not work much at all, you can set your schedule to succeed, if you’re willing to learn these seven secrets on writing to sell.
You can start part-time with any dream, passion, and budget. Once you’ve created a product, you’ll enjoy the “multiple effect” of producing profits over and over again.
So the question is… What do you love to do?
What’s Your Passion: An example is that thirty years ago, a client of Merri’s had a passion to help people who were in pain? He published a series of pamphlets explaining various chiropractic disorders in very simple terms. For example: “What Is Whip Lash?”
The pamphlets contained solid information, but were simple 5″ x 7″ brochures with drawings and explanations. He sold them with a rack to chiropractors, who put them in their offices for patients to read. These little self-published items sold year in and year out for decades.
There are thousands of ideas of this sort that can lead to big business. It’s just a matter of defining and then acting on your passion.
Although I can work when I please and go where I wish, for me the most important reason for being a publisher is the satisfaction it brings. I love the projects I take on, so work doesn’t feel like, well… work.
I’m passionate about investing, so I write and self publish ideas about investing. Merri and I love Ecuador… so we wrote about Ecuador.
What do you love? If you love golf, then you can write and sell publications about golf. Love travel, fishing, dogs, dolls, or art? Write and sell publications in these fields.
Are you concerned about crime, war, poverty or environmental issues? You can publish information products that help reduce these concerns.
Would you like to help the world be a more spiritual place? Publish a newsletter, write a book (or hire someone to write it for you), record a tape… publish something that enlightens people.
Whatever your passion, you can immerse yourself in it and earn income by publishing for ereaders, print on demand, CDs, lists, bound books, or any format you choose.
This is why stardom is not the main goal for most writers and self publishers. To be immersed in our passion and get paid well for it. That usually enough.
The seven Ps are:
#4: Profitably Priced Product
#5: Prospecting Pathway
In 1974, I had a business that never got ahead. I was almost penniless, in debt and living from hand to mouth. Then I discovered these seven secrets. They helped me write and sell book after book and report after report. Since then, our self publishing business has brought in millions.
How to build a solid business.
The key to building a successful self publishing business is to use the Golden Rule of Simplicity and the 7Ps to create your publication. The premise behind the Golden Rule is that if you have a passion… you have a problem. Your problem is a desire to fill.
The Golden rule of writing uses a writer’s desire as a compass to direct the creation and sale of the publication.
Here is the Golden Rule of Simplicity: Your Desires Are in Others. Your Desires ID Markets. Your Habits Reveals Pathways. Your Emotions Create Stories. Your Demands Create Publications.
This creative pathway works whether your publication is written by hand and sold on the street corner or published for Kindle at Amazon.com. These simple but basic fundamentals guide the creation of your works whether you use the most sophisticated equipment and algorithms or are totally low tech.
The first time I exposed others to the secrets in Self Publishing was in a weekend seminar. We offered the course for $1,500 and were surprised when 80 delegates enrolled. People from all walks of life attended—chiropractors, businessmen, investors, doctors, realtors, inventors, airline pilots, engineers, and housewives.
Merri and I were so overwhelmed by the response, we decided to make it available to a larger audience. We created a course based on our current self publishing activity.
That was more than 20 years ago and thousands have used the course as it has evolved over the decades. You can see a few current success stories at the links at the bottom of this note.
This course is not theoretical. It describes step-by-step how Merri and I built a million-dollar international business and how we are running this self publishing business right now. We use the 7Ps today just as we did four decades ago to create a strong six figure annual income.
Another thing that is unique is that Merri and I do this entire business by ourselves with the help of David Cross, our son-in-law and webmaster. You will not have to build an organization to self publish. Though we have over 35,000 readers who have subscribed to our ezine and though we have have made millions we still work from home. You’ll be able to do the same—if you wish—because the course includes everything we did and do—explained in vivid detail.
To this end, I have created a special offer. When you enroll in a Writer’s Camp, I’ll immediately send you an online course “Self Fulfilled – How to be a Self Publisher,” which is normally $299. I’ll also send our online course on how to use the internet and a website in your business and three additional bonuses.
Bonus #1: Get the 50 minute Video Workshop worth $99 “How to Start Your Own Internet Business” presented by our webmaster David Cross,
Bonus #2: Get FREE, the $299 online course “The Tangled Webs We Weave – How to Have an Internet Business”. To read more about this course click here.
Bonus #3: Our Super Thinking Workshop in an MP3 file so you can listen on your computer, burn a disk or listen on you Ipod or in your car. This recorded course sells for $199.
Bonus #4: A special report only available to those who enroll in “Self Fulfilled” entitled “Three Secrets for Creating Publishing Ideas”.
Bonus #5: Self Fulfilled 202 and 203. Self Publishing is changing so fast that the course continues to evolve. We added Self Fulfilled 202 in 2012 and 2o13. Now we are adding Self Fulfilled 303 in 2-14. You’ll get all new lessons we add for a year.
In all, you get $896 of bonuses FREE.
Whether you are an engineer, doctor, housewife, business owner, or retiree… self-publishing offers a way to turn your passion into profit.
Don’t miss this special opportunity. Order Self Fulfilled How to be a Self Publisher today.
Self Publisher and Author
(1) New York Sunday Times Over 50, and Under No Illusions by Diego Ibarra Sanchez