Tag Archive | "intrepid"

Intrepid Memories

Memories from the past can broaden our horizons to greater opportunities in the future.

Intrepid gandt

Today I am rereading the book, Intrepid by Bill White and Bob Gandt, with a forward by John McCain.

This is a great book that recollects the history of the men and women who have served our nation aboard this ship.

This is certainly a fit read for this time and for this age.  Memorial Day is the day we intensify our gratitude to those who have served and died for our nation.

Let’s remember them and their sacrifices every day… but set aside this day (or one like it if you live outside the US) as a time of special honor, emotion and thanks.

Intrepid is also a great read because the word “Intrepid” is described in the Merriam Webster Dictionary as:  characterized by resolute fearlessness, fortitude, and endurance.

Remembering the value of these qualities can help us prosper in an era of change when we need to be intrepid.  Remembering the past can help us understand change and help us enjoy the here and now in an intrepid way.

The West has enjoyed decades of extraordinary expansion due to the Veterans of our nation.  Yet the rapid change taking place globally can leave us asking, “Have our leaders let us down?”

The answer is “They have not”.  The world is (and always has been) beyond the control of any political platform.  No one…no economist…no banker nor investment manager… no bureaucrat nor politician can guarantee the future.  We cannot and should not rely on the government to look after us.  We can only rely on our ability to be intrepid in the face of change.

Change has always left the backward looking in despair.  Yet there has always been progress because those who are intrepid and forward looking, have always used troubling new ideas… new technology and new social pacts to create wave after wave of prosperity and growth.

History suggests that those who are intrepid and approach the era ahead with resolute fearlessness, fortitude, and endurance are those who will benefit from the next economic cycle.  Now is the time to become more intrepid.

Enjoy today’s holiday.  We are living in the most prosperous time known to mankind made possible through the valiant efforts of those who have sacrificed so much.  It is with great gratitude that we look forward to sharing an intrepid future with you.


You can order Intrepid at Amazon.com


Seven P Secrets of Self Publishing

When you write, you can work anywhere. 


Here I am working poolside in the winter, at our Florida farm.

gary scott

Here I am with our hound Ma, working during the summer at our North Carolina farm.

Learn how to earn everywhere, while living anywhere you choose.  I have been able to earn by writing in Hong Kong, England, the Isle of Man, Dominican Republic and Ecuador to name a few of the places I have lived.   Anywhere I am,  I am  able to work.

All I need is my laptop.

That’s all you need too… a laptop to be free!

Before computers, a pencil and pad did the job.

Freedom is just one benefit you can gain from a laptop business.

Another benefit is income.   Writing has brought me both our farms in Florida and North carolina, free and clear… plus a lot more.

Another good example of earning potential is my friend Hugh Howey.   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.com.  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.

That’s what he’s doing now.

Hugh Howey

Hugh and I playing chess (he beats me badly).

Writers like Hugh are great inspirations.

A couple of years ago Hugh  left Florida, and moved to South Africa.  He had a sailing catamaran built for him and now can sail the world while he continues to write.

Hugh explained it like this: And that’s the miracle of working as a writer: I can do it from anywhere and everywhere. The past few years, I’ve done a lot of writing from airplanes and airports while on business trips abroad.  SAND was entirely written overseas while traveling through seven different countries; I think it’s a better story because of those inspirations.  In upcoming years, I may be writing near your home port.

Hugh’s a super star writer and his success could not happen to a more deserving and talented person.  He pours enormous energy into being worthy of his readership.  But you do not have to be a million dollar a year earner or a traveler to benefit from writing.

The good news is… you do not need a huge success to have a rich and fulfilled lifestyle.  Self Publishing can bring you 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 Hugh’s rarely explain is the many hours of writing that was devoted before their self published book sales soared.   Hugh, like most writers were journeymen first.  Stardom came later.

Here are sevens secrets that can help you become a journeyman writer. 

The secrets are a writer’s armory of tools that allows almost anyone to create successful publications for income, freedom 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 and 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 will be 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. 

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 is new… except the seven secrets. 

Change in the publishing industry is disturbing many.   We love this evolution 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.

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.

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 Whiplash?”

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.

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.

Be immersed in your passion and get paid well for it. 

This is why stardom is not the main goal for most writers and self publishers.  Extra income, more freedom and fulfillment are usually more than enough enough.

The seven Ps are:

#1: Passion

#2: Problem

#3: Person

#4: Profitably Priced Product

#5: Prospecting Pathway

#6: Promise

#7: Presentation

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 on how to expand the profits of what you write called “Eventful Business” (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. 

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-cross-images tags:"2012-4-20"

David Cross

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.

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.

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 regular writing and self publishing updates 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:

  • “Self Fulfilled – How to Write to Sell” course
  • Video Workshop by our webmaster David Cross,
  • The entire weekend “Writer’s Camp” in MP3,
  • MP3 Workshop “How to Gain Added Success With Relaxed Concentration”
  • The business course “Eventful Business”
  • 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 the first three months for a full refund. 

Order “Self Fulfilled – How to Publish to Sell” and a full year of update lessons $299.  Click Here.      

See success stories from Self Publishers and a few who have attended the “Writer’s Camp” that you will receive on MP3.


The Importance of Memories

Understanding the importance of memories can help us broaden our horizons in a transformative time.

Intrepid gandt

Today I am reading  the book Intrepid by Bill White and Bob Gandt with a forward by John McCain.

This is a great book that recollects the history of the men and women who have served their nation about this ship.    This is a fit read for this time and for this age.   Today is Memorial Day as we intensify our memory for those who have died in our nation’s service, let’s remember them and their sacrifices every day… but set aside this day (or one like it if you live outside the US) as a time of special honor, emotion and gratitude.

This book is also a great read because the word Intrepid is described in the Merriam Webster Dictionary as:  characterized by resolute fearlessness, fortitude, and endurance.

History has brought us to an era of change when we need to be intrepid.

Remembering the past can help us understand change and help us be intrepid.

The West has enjoyed decades of extraordinary expansion due to the Veterans of WWII.   Yet old memories of war from the past tie us to the future we face now.

Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day which began after the American Civil War to commemorate the fallen soldiers of the Civil War.

The power of Civil War memories taught me a lesson about how strongly the threads of history bind us to today.

Growing up as an Oregonian, the Civil War was just an idea… known only through history books and the “Red Badge of Courage” which we had to read in our high school sophomore year.   An idea without emotion attached.

Then one day I conducted a seminar in Pascagoula, Mississippi and was talking about how the US economy grew after the end of the Civil War.  One delegate jumped in with “Who the hell said it was civil and who the hell said it has ended?” After the seminar I asked the MD who had sponsored this seminar if that delegate was joking.  My education was to learn that delegates really did still feel very emotional about that conflict.  The doctor went on to add that he believed the North had been beating up the South ever since.

I found that hard to believe until I looked at the poorest states in the Union.  That was over 30 years ago.  Then I married a Georgia Peach.  Merri was born and grew up in Macon, Georgia.  Spending time there taught me new names for the Civil War… such as “War Between the States” and “The War of Northern Aggression”.


Over this ridge at our North Carolina farm and down a couple of hollows is the border with Tennessee.   Some of our neighbors fly Confederate flags… very large ones… by their house… a tradition passed down from father to son in a long memory.  They would agree with those different names.

There may be a point to their side of this memory.   Today the ten poorest states in the Union based on rank by median household income are:

South Carolina
West Virginia

That’s a long memory… but not anywhere as long as some.

We can prepare for change by reflecting memories, long and short…and try to understand how those events remain woven into our lives today.

For example, let’s look at the recent JP Morgan $2 billion (or is it $3 billion) dollar loss.  Let’s refresh our short term memory  beginning with excerpts from a 2008 CNN article entitled  “Where’s the bank bailout money?”:  NEW YORK (CNN) — Banks have launched public relations campaigns to bring in customers and soothe nerves, with ads offering “peace of mind” and other promises.

Citigroup, along with JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Bank of America got the biggest chunks of the bailout.

But what’s not public is what they are doing with the billions in federal bailout money they’ve received — the money doled out through a $700 billion rescue plan so banks could start lending again.

CNN contacted the banks that were given the biggest chunks of the bailout: Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Bank of America.

The latter received $15 billion as part of the federal Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP).

Where the money went is not clear.

“We are using the TARP funds to build our capital and make every good loan that we can,” Bank of America said. The bank said it expects to release more information in its fourth quarter earning report.

Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo each received $25 billion — the largest amount given to any bank.

Then a  January 21, 2011 Time Magazine article entitled “Big Bad Bankers” brought us up to date. Here is an excerpt: Banks are back.  JPMorgan Chase recently announced that it earned $4.8 billion in the fourth quarter of 2010, nearly 50% over the previous year.

There is nothing inherently wrong with large banks making large profits. Yet the news from Wall Street is attracting the ire of Main Street, which continues to struggle.

While everyone else struggles, banks have been in a privileged position, benefiting from interest rates on short-term interbank loans (the mother’s milk of all banking transactions) of nearly zero and long-term rates above 3% plus fees.  Because a functioning banking system is as essential to modern society as power plants and water, banks have been given every advantage by government.

I was able to see something like the JP Morgan’s fiasco coming because I recall this phenomenon well.  I did not know specifically that JP Morgan would be the one… but what history suggested was that some bank who felt it would not be allowed to go out of business and was paying huge bonuses to its staff would really… really screw up.    According to the news, losses of $2 billion could grow to three and even more.  The Wall Street Journal reported that JPMorgan may lose $5 billion on its derivative business.

That recollection was of banking trends in the 1980s.  Back then, the US was coming off a recession and the Fed was increasing liquidity and lowering interest rates just as they have been these last several years.

One of my readers… a real estate developer… went bankrupt when his lender jerked his line of credit. One investor or another claimed fraud and the poor developer ended up in criminal court. His defense lawyer called me as an expert witness.

I remember that Federal prosecutor.  He did not like me at all… especially because I refused the defense attorney’s offer of pay. When he asked why… he suggested that the defense had put me up to this.

“Not true,” I replied. “I actually like to see justice”.  The big banks were making all the bucks and the small developer was going down the drain. Then the system was blaming some little guy while the fat cats laughed in their country clubs. I did not like it then when bankers were using my tax dollars and my bank deposits to enrich themselves while they let the overall economic system down. I do not like it now either.

The reason banks were not making loans then and now is simple.  The Fed is supplying the banks with reserves at a near-zero rate.  Not much of this money is loaned to business or homeowners, because the banks can buy Treasury bonds that pay 3% to 4%.  They borrow from the government at zero and invest the loan with the government for 3%. Wow, anyone could make money with that sort of deal!

Or worse.  Why should bankers who are rewarded with performance bonuses pass Federal money on to borrowers when the banks can speculate instead and pump up their profits…  and bonuses and make fortunes?

Here are short term memories we can reflect on about JP Morgan’s billions lost.  According to numerous news reports the CEO of JP Morgan Chase Jamie Dimon took home $23 million last year.

Ina Drew who was in charge of the specific risk at JP Morgan Chase that created the billions lost earned $14 million last year.

Yet it is the nature of the income that creates the problem.  For example according to numerous news reports, Drew’s base salary was a mere $750,000.  Much of the balance of the extra $13,250,000 came in the form of cash bonuses and stock options.

The trader who was in charge of the JP Morgan team which actually placed these losing bets in London, Bruno Michel Iksil, is said to be one of the highest paid bankers in London… again because of bonuses.

JP Morgan thanks in part to the 25 billion provided by US taxpayers and the global economic recovery earned well in 2010 and paid 26,000 bankers worldwide a pay and bonus pot of around 8.7 billion in 2011, or $334,000 each.

The London Independent newspaper cited an unnamed senior JPMorgan banker as saying that Iksil’s actions were “bloody annoying” and said that it is “probably quite likely” that the 2012 bonus pool will be halved.

Long term memories show us repeatedly that human nature is such that money distorts society for the benefit of a few at the expense of many.

We can blend these short term with the longer term to spot the past weaving its way into our future.  For example we can see how the banking  problems in the 1930s are connected to banking imbalances now.

The 1930s Depression led to the creation of the Federal Housing Administration. The FHA helped create fixed rate mortgages by insuring them.

Then Fannie Mae created the first liquid secondary market in these mortgages and thereby freed the loans so lenders could make more loans.

Along with the 1970s recession came Ginnie Mae,  another full faith and credit of the United States opportunity.  Plus the US federal government authorized Fannie Mae to purchase private mortgages, and added  Freddie Mac, to perform a similar role to Fannie Mae to help serialize private mortgages.

After the 1980s recession, Fannie Mae issued its first mortgage pass-through, called a mortgage-backed security and shortly after Freddie Mac issued the first collateralized mortgage obligation.

The government also passed the Secondary Mortgage Market Enhancement Act (SMMEA) to improve the marketability of private label pass-throughs so they could be legal investments equivalent to Treasury securities and other federal government bonds for federally-charted banks.

In other words, the US government has again and again thrown liquidity into every economic downturn.  Now with its huge debt… huge and growing trillion dollar deficits and other obligations added to the European crisis, one has to ask how much do we have in reserve?

Have modern leaders left the current economy in a position to recover without another major cleansing?   Will Western governments find a solution… again?

No one… no economist… no banker or investment manager…  no bureaucrat or politician can guarantee the future.  Therefore we cannot not rely on the government to look after us.

However we should not despair.  We can (and should) look after ourselves and each other through service.  Economic history since before WWI has been suggesting that we’ll see a crash in 2011 and perhaps 2012, but then will come to the light at the end of the tunnel.

This is a really important historical fact to consider.  Our challenge at this time is not to rearrange our lives for doom and gloom but to broaden our horizons so that we are ready to launch into the next even brighter future.

This is why we need to be intrepid now.

trading economic chart

This chart from Tradingeconomics.com (linked below) shows the connection between periods of zero or negative US economic growth and passage of these various government agencies and regulations to make it easier for the Fed to put money into the financial system.

In each case this did not resolve the problem.   Instead new ideas… new technology and new social pacts created wave after wave of growth.

All the memories we can view suggest this will happen again.  What will the technology be?  What countries will lead the way?

I do not know.

I do know history suggests that those who are intrepid and approach the era ahead with resolute fearlessness, fortitude, and endurance are those who will benefit from the next economic cycle up the most and now is the time to become more intrepid.

Enjoy today’s holiday.  We are living in the most prosperous time known to mankind through the valiant efforts of those who have sacrificed so much.  It is with great gratitude that we look forward to sharing an intrepid future with you.



Intrepid at Amazon.com

Where’s the bank bailout money?

Trading Economic Annual Growth Rate