Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Virtual Tour Stop for Carol Denbow

We're here today to talk to author and publisher Carol Denbow. Carol is the author of three non-fiction books. Her books are sold around the world.

Carol, how can an international writer get noticed in the American market?

Carol Denbow: The good news is, now more than ever before, an international writer has many more international opportunities for exposure thanks to the World Wide Web. It has been predicted that eighty percent of book purchasing will take place through the Internet by the year 2020. Personally, from the trend I’ve noticed recently, I feel it will be even sooner yet. Amazon.com is one of the best book-selling sites on the Internet and has expanded to include Joya Amazon.cn (Chinese), Amazon.fr (French), Amazon.de (German), and Amazon.co.jp (Japanese). Barnes & Noble booksellers online have followed suit with international sales. Their brick and mortar book stores now stock foreign publications as well, including Vogue Magazine in four different languages.

International writers need to use the resources available to them the same way American writers do in countries foreign to them. When I Google my books, I find them advertized in languages I can’t even begin to identify. Building and maintaining a good Website to promote your work, in any language, and then following up with submissions to the major search engines will get you noticed. It takes time, but will be well worth the effort, especially once the time arrives when cyber space book sales override our traditional sales methods here in the U.S. and the world.

Do you recommend self-publishing a book?

Carol Denbow: Well, I've been asked this before, but it's worth covering again. There are advantages that go along with traditional publishing, primarily, the cost—there really isn’t much when compared to self-publishing. But you do give up a considerable amount of control in exchange. For instance, I genuinely dislike the cover that was designed for my book, Stress Relief for the Working Stiff. I don’t feel it represents the contents of the book as well as the title being difficult to read from any reasonable distance. To me, this breaks the first rules of a good book cover design. But regardless of my efforts to change it, I have a contract with the publisher, and that is concrete. So even though it’s my book, I lose the power and control I would have had I self-published the book. Because of these things, I prefer to self-publish.

When you self-publish a book, and here I’m excluding print-on-demand publishing, you maintain complete control, but, in turn all expenses and a lot of work falls on your plate. Self-publishing requires an enormous commitment to what can equal years of preparation. After spending what may seem like endless hours writing your manuscript, there will be many more devoted to editing, layout, cover design, finding a reliable printer, marketing, and promotion. But of course, when you do-it-yourself, all profits are yours to keep.

Print-on-demand publishing is when you pay a publishing house to do a considerable amount of the work for you and make your book available to most buyers. But with POD publishing you still have to pay for copies of your own book. Also, your book is rarely “returnable” by retailers such as Barnes & Noble, so they are reluctant to order it, limiting your sales market.

Publishing options are something each individual author must choose according to their personal needs and expectations. For me, yes, I prefer to go all the way and self-publish on my own.

Is a marketing plan necessary?

Carol Denbow: If I said no, I’d be shot dead! Writing is a business and as with any business, you need to have a plan. There is no point in writing and publishing a book unless it will sell. Since more than seventy-five percent of books are self-published, I would like to direct this answer to those. On average, a self-published book sells only 120 copies. Are these statistics from published authors who lacked a good marketing plan? Absolutely!

I’d like to point out as well that book marketing is an ongoing effort. A new release can take up to three years to show signs of success. Some authors give up long before their book has the opportunity to really “get out there.” My first book, Are You Ready to Be Your Own Boss? was released back in September of 2006, but didn’t evolve into what I would consider a “successful” book until early this year. It takes a good and ongoing plan with aggressive and unique ideas to properly market a book.

If a writer invests $100 in promotion, will it be possible to earn that amount back in profit? (If not, is there a point where sales might equal the investment?)

Carol Denbow: It’s pretty well known that paid advertizing doesn’t typically sell books. Potential customers prefer to touch and feel, or at the very least, get a good glimpse of what’s inside the book.

First let me say this; when you submit your manuscript to one of the bigger name traditional publishing houses, they expect you to have a promotional budget of at least $5,000. But when they accept your script, they also expect to sell at least 5,000 copies of your book. If you self-publish, you can spend the same $5,000 but not have the resources available to you that the traditional publisher has.

Now after all that, $100 doesn’t seem like much to invest. But do the math. If you write a book, publish it, and order or buy 200 copies, what do you have invested in each copy? If each copy costs you $6.00, and your cover price is $18, your distributor or retailer gives you 50 percent of that, you profit is $3.00 before shipping costs. So you’ll need to sell at least 33 books to make up that $100 investment.

The best ways to promote your book are free. As a self-promoter, a little time spent can save your small profits for something better (maybe your next book). There are thousands of ways to get your book noticed and sold without the expenses on traditional paid advertizing. Be creative and try to think outside the box.

You have a very special deal for our viewers today. Can you tell us about it?

Carol Denbow: Sure, happy to. For each of my books ordered today, I am donating one copy to rebuild or re-stock a library affected by natural disaster, including the libraries in New Orleans, Cedar Rapids area, and Houston. Also, 10 percent of the books proceeds will go towards Breast Cancer Research.

Where can viewers find your books?

Carol Denbow: All three of my books, A Book Inside, How to Write, Publish, and Sell Your Story, Are You Ready to Be Your Own Boss?, and Stress Relief for the Working Stiff, are all available at my Websites (http://www.booksbydenbow.weebly.com), or Authors Box, and through Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble.com, or wherever books are sold (just ask for them).

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Stress Relief for the Working Stiff!

Do you sometimes feel completely burned out with nothing left to give? Do you suffer from stress due to work, health, family, school, or some other seemingly endless challenge in your life? The accumulation of each of our little daily stressors over our lifetime can negatively affect our long-term mental and physical health. It is estimated that as many as 80 percent of physician visits may be stress-related. Without knowing how to reduce stress, we leave ourselves susceptible to life-threatening illness, disease, and just plain unhappiness.

Technology is here to make our lives simpler, yet many of the new technological breakthroughs have actually added tremendous amounts of stress to our lives. The eight-hour day has become obsolete, and with cell phones, PDAs, and computers we are continually connected to our jobs. Our free time to relax has been squeezed out. Without the necessary free time to recuperate from our busy days, we become stressed.

Stress Relief for the Working Stiff, Reversing the Embalming Effect (2008)

by author Carol Denbow

With time contributing to our stress levels, quick relief needs to be a priority. This book will help you learn many of the “instant” relief techniques used for all types of people in a number of different situations. You will learn how to adjust your schedule, lifestyle, and attitude to better cope with stressful situations.

Stress Relief for the Working Stiff will help you understand why you are susceptible to stress, what the stress does to you physically and mentally, how to repair issues which cause you stress, and how to get relief now and for the long term.

I wish you peace, serenity, and a stress-free life.

Are you stressed out with nothing left to give?

It is estimated that as many as 80 percent of physician visits may be stress-related. Without knowing how to reduce stress, we leave ourselves susceptible to life-threatening illness, disease, and just plain unhappiness.
In this book you will discover:
· Why you are susceptible to stress.
· How to apply “quick fixes” and ultimately achieve long term relief.
· How to adjust your lifestyle to permanently take control and live a more stress-free life.


“Stress, like death and taxes, is an unavoidable fact of life. This very readable book addresses and explores the common causes of stress and its serious consequences to our health and happiness. Carol is absolutely right when she asserts that many of our health problems are directly related to stress or our unhealthy ways of dealing with it. She covers healthy ways that have been proven to manage and alleviate stress (even due to death and taxes!). I highly recommend this book to my patients and anyone else who is looking for positive ways to improve their health and life satisfaction.”
Dallas A. Carter, M.D.
Family Practice and Palliative Care Medicine
Medical Director South Coast Hospice

''This is the only book you will ever need to find the reasons behind your ‘STRESS,’ and easy - but practical solutions to throw it out of your life permanently.”
Gurdip Hari
Author, Mental, Physical & Spiritual Health

Carol Denbow - About Stress
After scoring an incredibly high 662 on the Holmes-Rahe scale for determining stress levels, Carol had an 80 percent probability of developing a stress-related illness, and she did. With the sudden death of her step son, and several friends and other family members all within a years time, a failing marriage, moving to a new city, and the continual stress of running a business alone, she fell ill with her body temperature rising above the norm continually for over a year. Receiving multiple testing over that period, her illness was vaguely diagnosed as an “auto-immune disorder.” What it was, was stress. Yes, stress really can make us ill.
After surviving a stress-related and life-threatening auto-immune disorder, author Carol Denbow realized the need for public knowledge on the importance of understanding and relieving stress was great, thus setting the path for this book, “Stress Relief for the Working Stiff.” Through extensive research, Carol has regained her good health and now lives a completely stress-free life in Oregon.
“Stress Relief for the Working Stiff” is set to be released in 2008 through Publish America.

Sneak Peek!!!

Page 17
The ability to adjust to life and its challenges is more often a learned behavior than a natural response. Our stress response system begins programming into us from the day of our birth. It could be learned from many things, such as parental imprint, our sibling’s influence, or even a childhood illness or trauma.
Stress is created by the way we view things in our lives. The way we view things and express our emotions start at a young age. Some of these things we don’t have the ability to change as we age, but the way we cope and adjust to them can help each of us lead a healthier emotional life.
Page 44
Chronic stress causes you to be out of balance. Studies show that placing people in stressful situations may jeopardize their ability to think clearly and make correct decisions. One study of elementary school children showed that when confronted with a stressful situation, each child’s IQ was lower than it was before the stressor was introduced.
It has also been shown that our ability to learn and retain knowledge is weakened when we are stressed. Some medical experts feel that chronic long-term stress may even lead to Alzheimer’s disease.
Page 82
Today’s technology affords us the ability to communicate with each other from anywhere, at any time, through cell phones and computers — in a matter of seconds. Yet if we live in a crowded city environment, we wait endlessly for many other simple necessities. Just to eat a meal out, we wait a half hour for an open table at a restaurant, and to reach a destination only ten miles away, we spend a full hour in heavy traffic. Even though we have made an appointment time, scheduled a week in advance, a visit to the doctor’s office can leave us in a waiting room full of germs for hours. If we weren’t stressed before, we will be after all the waiting and frustration. The accumulation of these little annoyances may be the biggest stressors in our lives.
Those little, persistent, common stress issues related to living in a crowded city environment negatively affect our physical and mental health. For those of us who are not so stress resilient, they can change our personalities and make us impatient, selfish, and hard. A stressful city lifestyle may even contribute to sickness and disease.
It’s not always an option to move to a quieter environment. We have careers and family that may keep us in our existing surroundings indefinitely. Many are not financially able to escape. But taking a break from our busy lifestyles, for a moment, and hour, a day, or a week, is absolutely necessary to reduce our stress levels. The best relief comes from simply getting out of the city. Find a place far away from the crowds, pollution, traffic, and noise of the city where you can unwind and relax your mind and body. If that’s not possible for you, find a quiet place away from your daily stressors and practice some of the meditation and breathing exercises provided in Chapter 7. Try visiting a gym or spa, taking a walk in the park, or spending quiet time with your pet. Put on earphones and listen to soothing music. Make a commitment to yourself to have time alone each day. For more tips on ways to temporarily escape, or change your lifestyle to reduce stress, see Chapter 10.

Write a book!

Is there a book inside you? 81 percent of Americans say yes.[1] With so many people having the desire to see their story in print, why does only a small percentage pick up the pen and write? Maybe it’s because writing and publishing a book seems like such an immeasurable task. But with proper direction, all writers have the ability to see their story in book form. "A Book Inside, Writing, publishing, and selling your story" is a new book to be released in 2008 by author Carol Denbow. The book will guide you through the process of writing and formatting your story, explain the pros and cons of all types of publishing and show you how to go about the process, then show you the best and most unique ways to sell your book.
You’re not alone in this venture, there are about 195,000 new titles published in the U.S. each year-is yours next?
[1] Jerrold Jenkin, Jenkins Group, (May 15, 1999).

Watch http://www.plainandsimplebooks.com/ for the release of this valuable tool

Are You Ready to Start a Business and Be Your Own Boss?

Everyone has dreamed about starting a business and being their own boss. Most who pursue that dream find only frustration and failure.
Since 1986, as many as nine out of ten new businesses have closed in their first year. According to a recent survey of failed business owners, “lack of planning” was the number one reason listed for new business failure. Other reasons included were: lack of experience, money, and low sales.

Carol Denbow is a retired business owner and author of the book “Are You Ready to Be Your Own Boss?”
“I think most people just get tired of feeling used and unappreciated at their jobs. They get their inspiration for entrepreneurship out of frustration. They see a company that they feel could be operated better, and they make the decision to go out and try it themselves. They are sometimes shocked at the overwhelming task of operating and growing a successful business. From lack of planning, and out of total frustration, they close their business and return to their employee status.

It’s really a shame; there are a lot of talented people out there who could possibly build a better company. But their lack of planning from the start closes the door on their odds of success, sometimes before they even open the doors of their new business.”

One of the most important calculations when planning a new business, which most new entrepreneurs grossly underestimate, is their personal cost of living. They list all the expenses their new business will have, but they neglect to recognize the total of their everyday personal expenses. The household bills still show up in the mail box, even though the chance of showing a profit in new business might take up to three years.

According to Denbow, the number one reason people listed for wanting to be self-employed was, “I want to work my own hours.” The time needed to get a new business up and running is a main planning issue also underestimated. New business owners most often need to invest many more hours than they did while working for someone else. Most new entrepreneurs quickly come to realize they have committed to more than the normal forty-hour work schedule. Business owners work an average of sixty hours a week.

Studies show that businesses who do survive longer had more cash up front to invest. Other survival factors included higher education and ten years or more previous experience in their field. Age is also a factor for success. According to a 2002 United States Census Bureau report, most successful business owners are over the age of thirty-five.

Ms. Denbow suggests if you are considering starting up a business of your own, do the proper planning. Research the industry you’re interested in, and see where the closest competition is. Get yourself educated about your new business. Avoid taking large loans to fund your new venture. Instead, keep your business idea in proportion to the amount of money you have to invest. There’s always a way to work out your idea without exceeding your means.

With as many as nine out of ten new businesses closing in their first year, knowing the reasons for those statistics is crucial to starting a successful business. Being self-employed can be gratifying and rewarding. With the right planning, success is achievable.

To seach inside Denbow's book click here!