Merrily Farms – Little Horse Creek
We bought an abandoned Ecuador 900 + acre hacienda and, during the winter, lived in a tin roof shack with no electricity or hot water.
Rosaspamba – Andes
We started our www.garyascott.com website.
This site passed a milestone in early 2o16, when our 5,000th free article appeared. This is the 5,037th. Every once in awhile I look back to see if the thoughts we have shared in the past were headed in the right direction and to find out if ideas that applied decades ago, still applies now.
Here is an excerpt from one of the first messages posted at this site almost 20 years ago. See if you feel that these ideas can still help make your life better.
Inspired Investing-More PIEC.
This year I have written often about the incredible financial power of having your own business in this era. This advice is based on the principles outlined by Austrian economist, Joseph Schumpeter, on how innovation creates industrial revolutions that alter the way we live, work and earn and keep money. We reviewed five great economic eras that began in the late 1700s:
ERA #1: 1785-1845-fueled by water power-60 years. Textiles and iron works were the backbone of growth industries.
ERA #2: 1845-1900-fueled by steam-55 years. Railways and steel provided the main growth in this era.
ERA #3: 1900-1950-fueled by the internal engine-50 years. Electricity and chemicals provided the major growth.
ERA #4: 1950-1990-fueled by electronics-40 years. Petrochemicals and aviation were the innovations which became mainstream in this period.
ERA #5: 1990-current-fueled by digital networks- 30 years+ ? Software and new media create the growth elements in this era.
The innovation that has led us to this current era allows us to increase our wealth and fulfillment in life at the same time by developing a Primary Income Earning Capacity, (PIEC). PIECS allow us to make money and feel better by looking within to find ways of turning our passions into wealth.
All of this innovation means we are in a continual state of turmoil and change. We have to work harder and look deeper to keep up, but the world is open to anyone who wishes to have riches beyond belief. The wealthiest billionaires of today were unknown just a decade or two ago. They have made incredible wealth in industries that have only existed for a few years.
This innovation empowers the individual! Today we have faster and faster computers, the Internet, the information access. All this allows you, me, anyone to be incredibly efficient, anywhere in the world! All this allows us to identify and reach markets very easily.
Everything is about to change yet again. The billionaires of today are likely to be the has beens of tomorrow and this is happening sooner than anyone can imagine. Never before has an old boys’ network been overturned so fast. The railway and oil magnates of the first and second era dominated the world’s wealth for centuries. Electronics, car and airline multimillionaires lasted perhaps 50 years. The Internet and communications wealth will be overshadowed in as little as a decade.
Add this all up. Change. Access to markets and information. Ability to plan, organize and sell. Anyone can take advantage of these opportunities and use them in small or large ways.
The beautiful thing is we can take advantage of this era to make money and avoid great dangers at the same time!
Opportunity Equals Danger. Avoiding the danger is important because each era of change not only brings new benefits but brings new dangers as well.
Today, speed of light information technology creates a huge threat to our wealth.
Not keeping up today is a big risk. Innovation builds new ways of life and in the process is destructive to the old. T raditionally accepted ways of working, investing and saving are not working as well as they did if at all. The Internet is making many, many businesses obsolete.
For example, take my business of publishing. The old ways of just printing a monthly newsletter no longer makes sense. Too much data is too readily available over the Internet. The timing of a monthly publication becomes too slow. There is still a market for newsletters to be sure, but enough of the market has gone or is going electronic that the printed newsletter market is a diminishing one.
Remember whatever you do, try not to have a business that grabs an ever increasing share of an ever diminishing market. (Think about the remaining buggy-whip manufacturer, if you don’t understand what this means). Jack Welsh, the president of General Electric (a well managed organization that grew out of Era #3 summed this up when he explained the following: When the internal rate of change in a business is slower than the outside rate of change, the end of the business is in sight.
The answer of course is to embrace the change and let your business evolve. This is true whether your business is one that you personally manage or is one in which your participation is as an investor.
I continue to hammer away on the idea of following your passions because I have been so lucky doing so. Over the years I always seem to be in exactly the right place at the right time, again and again. Without ever recognizing what I was doing I was stumbling through the process of keeping up without giving it any thought. I have always accomplished this by following areas that interested me personally. This allowed me to take advantage of what I call the Golden Rule of Simplicity which is to do what we love by learning to market from the heart. This puts us in touch with millions of others just like us! If we get in touch with our hearts, we are looking into the hearts of an entire market who feel and desire as we do. This is so simple yet it allows us to have the most finely tuned market research in existence.
Dream Solution I recently discovered a line of thought that can help us better focus or define how to use the rule of simplicity. I was speaking at a conference with the head of a think tank in Denmark, who gave a speech entitled the “Dream Society-How to Spot Upcoming Trends”. This gentlemen gave seven points that will affect markets in the current era.
* Trend #1: The rate of change will increase. This is self evident.
* Trend #2: The rate of private consumption will grow. From 1884 to 1995 private consumption just about doubled, but increased 25% in the past ten years. This means that the amount of money spent per person will continue to grow. This also means that the amount of discretionary income per person is growing. This also means by the way that society will have to continue to embrace technology. The only way to increase private consumption is through the generation of more output with less input. In other words, productivity has to grow before private consumption can grow. Improved productivity is normally gained through the use of new technology.
There is a second part to this second trend. Though private consumption will grow, less material goods will be purchased.
The growing trend is for the purchase of immaterial goods, such as sports, entertainment, health, communication and spirituality .
He pointed out Maslow’s Need Hierarchy which is: Physical – Security – Social Needs – Acknowledgement – Self-Realization.
In western society we now pretty much take the perfection of physical and security needs for granted. If we buy a new car. we expect it to run and to run pretty much perfectly. This is true of most consumer products, so we don’t choose one car over another for that material quality. We instead buy cars which fill social needs (for example, a mini van for our large family) or for acknowledgement such as an expensive sports car which has very little utility or a large sports utility vehicle with more utility than most of us need.
The key to understanding these facts is that the higher people move up the hierarchy, the more they will pay for the satisfaction of their needs. Pound for pound, a Chevy Caprice is a lot more car for the dollar than a top line Porsche (the owner of the Porsche has to risk life and driver’s license to even use the performance feature). It is the implied power, the acknowledgement that the Porsche owner is paying all the extra thousands for.
* Trend #3: There will be more automation. In the process of automation, mankind works through another type of hierarchy to supplement muscles first, brains second and feelings third. This fits Maslov’s Law of Needs explaining why tractors and forklifts were invented long before computers.
This knowledge can help us see why the future for mood altering equipment, machines and drugs will grow. As automation takes over all of the physical jobs we have to do, then we’ll start looking for ways to automate our emotions as well. This speaks well for the entertainment industry and explains why people get so caught up in sports for example.
Here humanity throws in another interesting twist because the more we perfect automation in an area, the more retro we become. Once we perfected central heating there was an explosion in demand for fireplaces. This explains why, in the United States which has perfected its road systems and has such large urban areas that almost no one needs to venture into the country, the fastest growing segment in the auto industry is the four wheel drive sports-utility vehicle.
* Trend #4: Age, sex and wealth are becoming increasingly irrelevant. Society is going through a great convergence which explains the end of segregation and the advancement of basic human rights. This is why U.S. armies (or NATO’s armies acting at America’s bequest) are now allowed to invade so many places. It has always been politically okay to invade the space of another nation if it is in the name of a “good cause”. The end of discrimination is causing the description of “good causes” to dramatically narrow. This also dramatically alters markets. Look at the ads for the vitamins called Centrum Silver which show a mature couple in some form of physical activity. The slogan of the manufacturer is “It’s a good time to be silver”. Look at how adults buy items that used to be for the kids, such as bicycles. The subject of bicycles leads us to the next trend:
* Trend #5: There will be a shift of attitude from our brain to heart. Once mankind has taken care of its basic physical needs, it will revolt against the tyranny of reason. Function (such as the well running car) is taken for granted. Now there is a m arket for stories not products. One example,used was that in Denmark the highest point of land in the country was not over a few hundred feet. Yet guess what the best selling bicycles in the country are? Mountain bikes, of course. Look at the strong markets: for belonging, love, togetherness, identity, adventure, anchored values, conviction and caring, not products. Housing was another example he used. More and more people demand having huge family style dining rooms while eating out grows enormously. This fact has very much to do with the next trend.
* Trend #6: Families will turn more and more of their responsibilities to the market place. Cooking and eating out were one of the first signs of this trend. Then came the giving up of entertainment (how often do you stay home and play games with the kids). Look at the growth in businesses for child upbringing and care of the elderly. See how our health and financial care are become given over, more and more, to the insurance companies, HMOs and other such businesses. Even the emotions of our kids, (including the huge growth in sales of prescription drugs) are being serviced by business now. Parents are more likely than ever before to call in a party entertainer for the birthday of the kids. Weddings are more and more organized by wedding planners than ever before. Where we live up here on the farm in the mountains when someone passes, their loved ones go out to the family cemetery, dig the grave and bury their own. This used to happen all over the country. When was the last time you attended such a funeral? Now all of these ceremonies are dealt with by business.
* Trend #7: The growth in markets will be for stories, not products. One example given was for selling eggs. He explained how the typical, not tuned in farmer can sell an egg for 10 cents in Denmark. The product has become commoditized. This is an important clue. You do not want to be in a market where the product becomes commoditized. The only way to compete in such markets is through lowering price. This usually requires a reduction of profits or a huge infusion of cash.
Then he went on to explain how some smart farmers had caught on and started offering free range eggs. Now they were not selling eggs. They were selling a story of health. This is still just an egg but now it can sell for twenty cents!
But the really smart farmers have taken it a step further. They allow families to come to the farm, enjoy the fresh outdoors and work as a family collecting the free range eggs. Still the same egg but the story is different, health, togetherness, anchored values. These eggs sell for thirty cents! The
Power of the Heart
The egg example was inspiring to me because I was wondering why we had just set up a flock of Cornish hens (for the eggs) high in the Andes mountains where Merri and I had purchased a plantation. This is the power behind the Golden Rule of Simplicity.
But how do we get in touch with ourselves to use this enormously powerful law?
Understanding and being able to follow our intuition can be enormously difficult, but an anonymous 14th century Samurai warrior gives us a clue how to do this. This Warrior’s Creed explains what to do better than I could, so I’d like to share it here with you.
A WARRIOR’S CREED I have no parents: I make the heavens and earth my parents.
I have no home: I make awareness my home.
I have no life or death: I make the tides of breathing my life and death.
I have no divine power: I make honesty my divine power.
I have no means: I make understanding my means.
I have no magic secrets: I make character my magic secret.
I have no body: I make endurance my body. I have no eyes: I make the flash of lightning my eyes. I have no ears: I make sensibility my ears. I have no limbs: I make promptness my limbs.
I have no strategy: I make unshadowed by thought my strategy.
I have no designs: I make seizing opportunity by the forelock my design.
I have no miracles: I make right action my miracles.
I have no principles: I make adaptability to all circumstances my principles.
I have no tactics: I make emptiness and fullness my tactics.
I have no talents: I make readiness my talent.
I have no friends: I make my mind my friend.
I have no enemy: I make carelessness my enemy.
I have no armor: I make benevolence and righteousness my armor.
I have no castle: I make immovable mind my castle.
I have no sword: I make absence of self my sword.
Whether we are investors or business people, we are commercial warriors. Despite industrial eras, technology, innovation and all the miracles of our modern world, the true nature of life, commerce and business has not altered one bit. Run your business or invest with this wisdom and you will not be able to fail.
Seven P Secrets of Self PublishingHere are seven secrets that can help you earn as a writer and self publisher.
When you write, you can work anywhere. Here I am working in my greenhouse.
Gain the freedom to earn everywhere, while living anywhere you choose.
These seven 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.
I know Hugh. Sometimes we get together at my farm and play chess (he beats me badly).
These writers are great inspirations.
Hugh’s success could not happen to a more deserving and talented person. He pours enormous energy into being worthy of his readership.
Neither you or I are likely to have this type of success. 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 explain how many hours of writing each 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 more than 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 Merri and 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 our adventures… having fun… while helping a large readership adapt to a rapidly changing world.
That’s what self publishing can bring, profit, adventure and fulfillment, a great feeling of worth and wonder.
Self Publishing has created exactly the lifestyle we desire allowing us to span the world and work with 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.
One 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 “Writer’s Camp” seminar. We offered the camp for $1,500. 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 written course based on our current self publishing activity called “Self Fulfilled – How to be a Self Publisher.” Then we recorded the weekend “Writer’s Camp” seminar.
Thousands have used the course as it has evolved over the decades.
You can receive both the written course and the recorded weekend seminar, in an MP3 file, in a special “Live Well and Free Anywhere” program I am making available to you. The normal fee is $299 for the written course and $299 for the recorded workshop. I’ll send you both the course and the recorded workshop and my course “International Business Made EZ (also $299) all for $299. You save $598.
We are so confident that you’ll gain from this offer that if you are not fully satisfied, simply email us within 60 days for a full refund .
These courses are not theoretical. They describe, 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 annual income.
This correspondence course is for those who would like their own international self publishing micro business for fun and profit. If you want fun, freedom, extra income and fulfillment with your own full or part time writing or want to build your existing business, by writing to sell you can profit from this course. The course can help who want their own business or who want to have a business together or a family business. This is the perfect course for those who can no longer find employment, who are looking for ways to earn abroad and who wish to retire and supplement their income.
Whether you are retired, an investor, chiropractor, doctor, dentist, professional or already own your own business, this offers another way to make money, to turn your passion into profit. We guarantee that we have shared all we know to help you start and run your own international business. Enjoy and live a life of following your Passion to Profit… through writing.
Here is a special offer. We provide two emailed courses “Self Fulfilled – How to Write to Sell and be a Self Publisher” and “International Business Made EZ”.
We include the “Self Fulfilled Writing and Self Publishing Course” because there are two reasons to write, when you have something to say or when you have something to sell. In this day and age many of us want to do both, make a statement that makes the world a better place and earn something extra in the process.
Whatever your passion, however you do business, chances are you’ll be writing either to create a product or to sell a product.
You save more than $598 because you also receive a recorded webinar conducted by our webmaster David Cross (at no extra cost).
David has been our webmaster since our website began in the 1990s. He is Merri’s and my business partner. We could not run our business as we do without him.
You can learn the tactics we use in our web business that condenses 27 years of practical experience about search engine optimization, and writing for search engines.
For the last 27 years David has worked with companies large and small – IBM, Agora Publishing, AstraZeneca and many small business owners. He has worked in 22 countries, and lived in six of them.
David’s clients span the globe and represent companies and charities both large and small. From corporate giants to small, one-woman businesses and everything from finance, healthcare, publishing, technology, real estate, veterinarians, alternative health centers and everything in between.
David is an essential part of our web based business and Myles Norin, CEO of Agora, Inc. wrote: “I have found David’s knowledge and experience unmatched in the industry. Without David’s expertise and guidance for the past 7 years, we would not be nearly as successful as we are.”
As Senior Internet Consultant to Agora Inc. in Baltimore, MD, he worked closely with Agora’s publishers and marketers and – over a 7-year period – helped to propel Agora’s online revenues from around $20 million to well over $300 million.
David’s webinar will help you gain benefits in your micro business that large internet marketing companies use. In this practical recorded workshop you will learn valuable skills to help your micro business.
There has never been a time when the opportunity for small businesses abroad has been so outstanding. Expand your borders now! Increase your economic security freedom, independence and success.
If you are not fully satisfied that this offers you enormous value simply email us for a full refund within 60 days. You can keep all three courses as our thanks for giving our courses a try.
You also receive a report “How to use Relaxed Concentration to Brainstorm Business Ideas” and a recorded workshop “How to Become and Remain Rich With Relaxed Concentration” at no additional cost.
Plus you get more in the program.
You receive the Report, “How to Finance a Small Business Overseas” (no extra fee).
Merri and I have always preferred to start our micro businesses through cash flow. However in the early the days of our business I found myself raising extra capital several times. I have also helped numerous businesses raise money to get started. This report shares several experiences to give a thumbnail sketch of how to raise money abroad.
In addition you receive any updates we make on any of these courses reports or recordings, free for a year. Businesses usually need to evolve. Merri and I continue to publish and have our independent businesses. Some basics have remained for decades, but new strategies occur all the time throughout the year. We’ll be sending along updates that share our most recent experiences as we learn and continue to grow our international micro business from Smalltown USA.
My special offer to you in this “Live Well and Free Anywhere Program”, is that you receive:
- “International Business Made EZ” course
- “Self Fulfilled – How to Write to Sell” course
- Video Workshop by our webmaster David Cross,
- The entire weekend “Writer’s Camp” in MP3,
- The report “How to Raise Money Abroad”
- Report and MP3 Workshop “How to Gain Added Success With Relaxed Concentration”
- Any updates to any of the courses, workshops, reports or recordings for a year.
We are so confident that you’ll gain from this offer that if you are not fully satisfied, simply email us within 60 days for a full refund .
To order International Business Made EZ and the entire “Live Well and Free Anywhere” program for $299. Click Here.