Authors

Meera Kothand – Story of An Accidental Entrepreneur

Meera Kothand is an email marketing strategist and Amazon’s bestselling author.

She considers herself as an accidental entrepreneur.

Her Journey is really inspiring from crashing her own site (and not getting a single customer) to an email marketing and blogging influencer.

She has been featured on Smart Blogger, Marketing Profs, YFS, Addicted 2 Success and several other sites.

Her specialty: simplifying marketing strategy with no-fluff, direct and actionable advice with a smattering of tough love.

Her work helped thousands of bloggers and marketers.

Let’s read the story of this accidental entrepreneur.

Who’s Meera? Read Her Own Words

I was never the kid at the lemonade stand.

I was never one of those people who said that they always knew they wanted to be an entrepreneur.

No one in my family owns a business.

You went to college and got a job. That was the norm.

I never had an entrepreneurial bone in my body.

So naturally, I had loads of self doubt when I started.

Should I bother?

Am I wasting my time? Is it worth it?

Would people think my writing’s lame.

It was and still is a process getting over my assumptions and limiting beliefs.

But there are a couple of things that I did right from the start and this has helped me to this day.

  1. Being very clear about what my brand was about
  2. Nurturing an email list from Day 1.
  3. Being budget conscious but willing to invest in education and tools appropriate for my stage of growth.
  4. Thinking of systems from the start

A focus on these things helped me grow an audience and attract new audiences via word of mouth.

At the same time it allowed me to stay focused and now fall prey to distraction and shiny object syndrome.

I gave a lot of importance to systems even before I fully comprehended what they were about. That has helped me tremendously as well.

I don’t necessarily feel like I’ve reached a certain level of success. Yes, I’ve surpassed my expectations of what I originally thought possible but I’m not moving toward a destination.

I’m fascinated by online marketing and I want to try new strategies and tools….to see how they work and if they didn’t why or why now.

So growth and success is more of a journey and this mindset makes me show up everyday.

How To Grow Your Email List

Books Written By Meera

  1. The One Hour Content Plan: The Solopreneur’s Guide to a Year’s Worth of Blog Post Ideas in 60 Minutes and Creating Content That Hooks and Sells 
  2. But I’m Not An Expert!: Go from newbie to expert and radically skyrocket your influence without feeling like a fraud 
  3. Your First 100: How to Get Your First 100 Repeat Customers (and Loyal, Raving Fans) Buying Your Digital Products Without Sleazy Marketing or Selling Your Soul
  4. CREATE Blog and Editorial Planner: Create Exceptional Content, Get More Done and Smash Through Your Blogging Goals 

What Her Readers Are Saying

“Meera’s content is one of the best in the blogging & digital marketing industry – the amount of useful information she gives is remarkable. I also love how authentic and helpful she is.” – — Raelyn Tan

“Email marketing can be so confusing for online entrepreneurs. Meera Kothand makes it easy.”- Isabelle

“The first time I came across her site I literally read EVERY post all in one sitting – and they’re all crazy in depth posts – but it didn’t matter because I was hooked! She knows marketing is about the people as much as it is the product.” – Yuri Gibson

Meera’s Email Marketing and Blogging Tips

Here are some golden tips from Meera:

  1. Start your email list immediately

When should I start my email list?

Are you still thinking it?

She strongly suggests you to start your list from the day one your blog or site goes live.

If you have already launched your blog and haven’t started building email list.

Start it IMMEDIATELY.

Email list is something you own.

It’s an asset.

Email helps you to build a pattern of trust with your readers. Once you build trust with your subscribers, they are more likely to buy from you.

  1. Republish your content

Do you think that Google will hate if you republish your content?

Republishing means duplicacy and it will hurt SEO?

There’s nothing bad to republish your content on Medium and other popular sites which have a larger audience base.

You just have to do make some changes: Tweak the title and add new images – And you’re good to go.

  1. Always send a welcome email to new subscribers

Every website owner or blogger must send welcome email or welcome series (series of 3-4 emails) when someone first joins your email list.

This is the most overlooked aspect of email marketing.

A welcome email simply means ‘roll out the red carpet’ for your subscribers when they first sign up.

  1. Your writing should make an impact

As a blogger or writer, always think what you can bring to the table.

What value you can provide to your readers and your every blog post should make an impact, Show your unique voice to the world and you can do it by writing every day.

Insider Tips from Meera’s Newsletters (You won’t find anywhere)

  1. Be clear about how you’re using content

How do I get enough content for my blog as well as email?

If you’re having this on your mind, it likely means you don’t have a proper content strategy in place.

What is each content channel for?

We’ve all come across the word funnel right?

There’s a top, middle and end of the funnel.

The reason a funnel tapers or narrows at the end is because only a fraction of your email list will become buyers at any one point in time.

Your content moves people further down the funnel. But every stage of your funnel has a goal.

The top attracts readers and entices them to become subscribers.

The middle is where you nurture subscribers to become buyers.

This is where email plays a crucial role.

  1. Squash the temptation to move on to the ‘next thing’

People shelving perfectly good products because they were disappointed with sales…or they were bored with it…or they think no one wanted it.

You’re not building a product. You’re building a marketing asset….something that’s going to be a part of your brand.

Sales is always a symptom of some other problem.

Is the message of your product confusing?

Do you need to reframe the problem?

Any product needs a few iterations before you get the messaging correct. So don’t shelve it without giving it a chance.

  1. Write your mission statement

What do you want for your readers?

What impact or change do you want to bring for their life?

Every single content and product on your website should work at fulfilling your core message.

Think of it like an assembly line in a factory.

Your content, products, messages cumulate and work their way towards bringing your customer or reader to that desired change or outcome at the end of the assembly line.

Fun Facts About Meera

  • Meera used to write fiction and actually won first prize in an international writing contest. She said that she can’t imagine to write fiction again.
  • She has always been the nerd who sits in the first row in class.
  • She love coffee with milk and milk chocolates.
  • She lives in Singapore with her husband, daughter, and parents.

Authors

Ten Phases Of Keith Johnson’s Terrific Career Journey to “Senior Technical Writer”

In 1985, Keith Johnson was asked what he was going to do at college besides just going to classes, by an upper classman.

Keith replied “I am not sure”.

The upper classman said, “Come and work on the student newspaper. We need writers.”

Keith replied “I do not know how to write.” The upperclassman said “No worries. I will teach you.” And he did.

For the next three years, Keith Johnson served his college community as regular newspaper writer and then News Editor of the Willamette Collegian.

That was Step #1 of Keith’s professional path.

In 1992, Keith, after completing an IBM-certified course of study in computing, got a job in Southern Brazil at the International School of Curitiba as computer teacher.

Step #2 in his professional journey

In this position, Keith learned to teach, train, troubleshoot, fix computer hardware and software, and more. He eventually began to develop software on his own, using the C programming language, to create programs for the Microsoft Windows platform. That was Step #2 of Keith’s professional path.

Step #3

In 1996, Keith was hired by Rene Perez and Associates in Miami, Florida, as a technical writer.

In Brazil, as both a trainer and programmer, he had to learn how to document the development and use of computer software.

RPA recognized Keith’s skill and for the next several years, Keith documented the company’s passenger revenue accounting and purchasing, maintenance, and inventory software for aviation clients.

Step #4

In 2000, Keith was hired by Star Media Corporation and became the trainer of its wireless division.

This division had created a Wireless Internet Server (WIS) and Keith traveled to Latin America to train field workers how to manage and repair this server.

Keith used his Portuguese and Spanish language skills during this professional tenure.

Step #5

In 2005, Keith completed his Master’s of Science in Education degree at Nova Southeastern University.

Both Technical Writing and Software Training, in his view, were professional “education” paths, so formal studies in this area would become most helpful.

Step #6

In 2008, Keith was hired by Qpay, located in North Miami Beach, Florida to become its Technical Writer/Trainer.

The company had created electronic payment software for emerging telecoms like MetroPCS, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Cricket Wireless.

Each client needed user guides and training videos, and this is what Keith worked on for the next six years.

Keith was well-respected by all employees at Qpay and was able to become a Subject Matter Expert (SME) for executives at times because of his thorough platform knowledge.

Step #7

In 2014, Keith wrote his first commercial technology book called “The Google Productivity Guide”, which shows users unfamiliar with the Google platform how to take advantage of the company’s many free resources – Search, Blogger, Translate, Gmail, Hangouts, and more.

The book sold very well in its first three months at Amazon.com.

Step #8

In 2016, Keith wrote his second commercial technology book called “Windows 10 for Seniors and Beginners”, which shows users unfamiliar with Microsoft Windows 10 how to navigate the Operating System.

The book sold well over a year’s time and received many positive reviews at Amazon.com.

Step #9

In 2017, Keith was hired by First Global Capital in Hallandale Beach, Florida to become its Senior Technical Writer.

Keith wrote complete user guides for regular and admin users of the company’s Investor and Sales portals.

Keith also composed training manuals for the company’s employees on how to use RingCentral for Meetings and Salesforce for Sales/Prospecting.

Hiring Chief Operations Officer and Vice President, Steve Bernardone says of Keith at LinkedIn: “Keith is a great listener who strives to understand both the project and the audience. Keith is also an expert in training users through a patient and diligent demeanor.”

Step #10

Finally, two months ago, Keith composed his latest and greatest technology book that is now live at Amazon.com in both paperback and kindle formats. Its title is “365 Technical Writing Tips.”

In this book, Keith details tools, resources, insights, strategies, observations, lessons learned, and more about the process of writing technical documents.

The book is not just for Tech Writers, he says. Rather, the book is for all writers, and especially those working with technical content.

Since writing this book, Keith has been featured on three webinars and reviews of “365 Technical Writing Tips” will be out soon by chapters of the Society for Technical Communications in India and the USA.

Keith believes his book can positively impact writers everywhere.

It took Keith twenty years to earn the professional title of Senior Technical Writer.

He started his career in the third world earning a very modest salary and learned on the side while holding numerous jobs and still taking care of his family.

Keith Johnson is a Senior Technical Writer because it gives him a chance to serve the world as an Educator.

Keith says “it is one thing just to record or document something. It is another thing to learn, write, and educate your reader(s) in your document.”

Keith believes strongly in the saying of the American Philosopher John Dewey: “Education is not preparation for life. Education is life itself.”

So, the lesson you can learn from Keith’s amazing career journey is — Hard-work and education is the key to success – both financial and personal.

Authors

James Patterson, One of the Richest Authors on the Planet

Let me introduce you to James Patterson, the richest author in the world, who is known for selling 9.5 million domestic copies in a year. His total net worth is $87 million.

Background and academics

According to James Patterson’s own website, Patterson comes from a humble background. Born to an insurance salesman, who was a school teacher as well, James was raised in Newburgh, New York. Writing came to him naturally and he started writing casually at the tender age of 19.

After graduating from Manhattan College in 1969, he went on to join the graduate program in English from Vanderbilt University, but soon dropped out. Later on, he joined an advertising agency and started working as a junior copywriter. He was quite hard working and ambitious. Soon, he was promoted as the CEO of its North American company.

James Patterson, 71, lives in Palm Beach Florida and is married with one child. He is ranked 9th in the Forbes 2017 Top 100 List of celebrities.

The richest author in the world

Patterson’s total net worth is $87 million and he is famous around the world for his earnings as an author.

Cracking the James Patterson Code – How the Highest Paid Author Writes 30 Bestsellers a Year

TV shows and films based on his work
Several of his works have been considered for screening on television and adaptation as films. Recently, as a remarkable breakthrough in his career as a novelist, he has signed an estimated seven figure agreement for co-writing his upcoming thriller novel, “The President Is Missing”, with former President Bill Clinton.  It will be the first novel co-authored by Clinton. Its television version will be developed by Showtime. The novel is expected to be unveiled on 4th June, 2018.

Record sales

By January 2016, Patterson had sold more than 350 million copies of his books globally.

He also maintains the Guinness Book of World Records, for the maximum number of New York Times best sellers.

Apart from thriller novels, he loves writing for kids, middle-aged people and youngsters.

10 Questions for James Patterson

His novels

Patterson’s first novel was published in 1976, when he was still working with J Walter Thompson. Initially, he had to struggle to get his first novel published. His novel ended up winning Edgar Award as his exemplary debut novel. In 1993, his novel Along Came a Spider that featured Alex Cross, became his first NYT bestseller in fiction.

In 2001, the movie adaptation of Along Came a Spider featured Morgan Freeman as Alex Cross.  Another movie adaptation of Patterson’s novel Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life was released in multiplexes across the US in the year 2016.

Philanthropic work

Patterson is also known for his extraordinary philanthropic work. It’s majorly focused toward encouraging young children to become avid readers.

Patterson received the following awards

Edgar Award
The International Thriller of the Year Award
Children’s Choice Award for Author of the Year
National Book Foundation’s 2015 Literarian Award for Outstanding Service to the American Literary Community
National Parenting Publications Honors Awards
International Reading Association’s Young Adults’ Choices Booklist
London Times Book Sense Children’s Pick
2011 Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Award, Nominee
Children’s Choice Book Awards
Author of the Year 2010 for Max
Nominee, 2011 Teen Choice Book of the Year (Fang) and 2012

Final thoughts

James Patterson is not just a writer, he is a man with a mission. His passion and hard work to promote reading habits has paid off. He will continue to surprise us in the years to come through his work.

Note: Information mentioned in this article is sourced from James Patterson’s official website, http://www.jamespatterson.com/biography

Authors

The journey of J K Rowling from a struggling single mom to one of the richest authors

Born on July 31st 1965, in Chipping Sodbury Near Bristol, England, Joanne Rowling, also known as JK Rowling is a famous British author, who is known worldwide for her popular Harry Potter children’s book series.

Her net worth

JK Rowling is also famous for amassing a fortune of $850 million, which makes her one of the richest persons in the world. On paper, she is considered even richer than Queen Elizabeth II. The source of her wealth is the royalty earned through her Harry Potter series of books of which she has sold more than 450 million copies and also its movie franchise that has earned her around $8 billion. She is also known for her generous charities. She has donated about $150 million to different charities.

J.K. Rowling’s Top 10 Rules For Success

Her struggle as a single mother

Just like other successful authors, Rowling also had her fair share of trials and difficulties in life. You won’t believe it but when she was writing her first book, she was struggling as a divorcee and a single mother in Scotland. Her moment of glory came, when her first novel Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone was published.

With unprecedented response and success of this fantasy novel worldwide, JK Rowling had also become a popular author, who bagged a place in the New York Times bestseller list. She is doing well both in the publication industry and in her film franchise business. In 2016, two of her movies “Where to find them” and “Fantastic Beasts” were released along with the play titled as “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child”.

Part of her success as writer is due to the fact that Rowling is able to touch readers at an emotional level.

Early Life

Joanne Rowling spent her childhood in different British cities such as Winterbourne, Gloucestershire until she was nine and then her family moved to Chepstow, Wales. JK Rowling was quite fond of reading books since her childhood. She was always surrounded by books as reading was her passion. You will be surprised to know that she wrote her first book when she was just 6 years old and the title of the story was “Rabbit”.

 Her journey as a writer

She wrote a novel about seven cursed diamonds and the people who owned them, when she was barely 11 years old. In 1990, she lost her mother. In 1991, she moved to Portugal to teach English language. Romance was in the air and she fell in love with a Portuguese journalist Jorge Arantes and got married to him. She gave birth to a beautiful daughter Jessica in 1993. The marriage didn’t last and she was divorced by her husband after a heated argument. This completely changed her life she took her little daughter and moved to live with her younger sister Dianne in Edinburgh. In Edinburgh, she used to write in café’s when her child had a nap.

JK Rowling joined University of Exeter and studied French and classics. Her knowledge of classics came in handy, when she was writing the spells in Harry Potter. She first got an idea for Harry Potter in 1990. She kept on writing for the next five years and planned to write a seven book series on the topic. Her initial work was in the form of scattered notes. In 1993, when she had already written a few chapters of the  book “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone”, she found herself struggling financially as a single mum.

She shared the manuscript of her book with various publishers and after initial rejections got some positive response. The books saw the light of the day when Bloomsbury decided to publish it in 1997. Rowling, had become an international celebrity writer in 1999, when the first three books of Harry Potter series occupied all the top 3 slots at the New York Times International bestseller list.

J.K. Rowling’s Website

JK Rowling had launched a website Pottermore in 2014, in which she publishes stories and additional information about her book series and movies related to Harry Potter.

J K Rowling calls herself a Christian, as far as her faith is concerned, but sometimes she doubts her faith. She shares a bitter sweet relationship with media. She has taken numerous actions against press and she dislikes the nature of their reporting. Currently, she lives in Scotland with her Scottish husband Neil Murray, her son David (born 2003), youngest daughter Mackenzie (born 2005) and eldest daughter Jessica (born 1993) from her former husband. By nature, she is quiet and introspective and loves her privacy.

 

Authors

Devin Thorpe, an Interesting Tryst with Destiny

“As long as we are persistent in our pursuit of our deepest destiny, we will continue to grow. We cannot choose the day or time when we will fully bloom. It happens in its own time.” Denis Waitley

A born philanthropist

It won’t be an exaggeration to say that Devin Thorpe is a born philanthropist. However, he could not choose a career in philanthropy or writing during his academics, because that was not considered a lucrative career those days. He instead chose finance as it was considered more rewarding. He did well in finance and worked for a big multinational company as a CFO.  He also founded an investment bank, which was later registered on NASDAQ. But, all that couldn’t satisfy him as a person.

He always wanted to go back to his favorite activity i.e. helping people and making this world a better place. It was probably his divine call. It took him three decades to realize his dream, but the wait was worth it.

A writer, a philanthropist and a public speaker

At present, Devin Thorpe is a columnist at Forbes magazine. He also runs a YouTube channel. He advocates and works for social welfare around the globe. Born and brought up in Salt Lake City, Utah, he first discovered his passion for social welfare, when he was just 11 years old.

Are you crazy enough to change the world

Thorpe got an opportunity to digging muck from the basements of a neighborhood near Idaho that was flooded. Initially, he was not very serious about the task, until he had a blissful feeling after performing this task. The feeling was so intense that he resolved to do it more and more. Later on, he never missed an opportunity to serve people.

Career

Devin Thorpe was passionate about writing as a career during his childhood, but it was a common understanding at the time that it will not bring decent income and so the idea was dropped. He joined the bank at the young age of 21, when he was just an undergraduate in the University of Utah pursuing a degree in finance.

Later on, he completed a government internship in banking. Later on, he completed his MBA degree from Cornell University.  He learnt a lot about finance and entrepreneurship during his stint as a CFO. His finance career was full of growth and brought him many financial rewards, but somehow he was not fully satisfied. He always wanted to achieve his childhood ambition.

Pursuing his favorite career

In 1997, Devin Thorpe decided that he should pursue his childhood dream and wrote his first book. In 2011, he was fired from the senior position of CFO at a food and beverages company, but that was the last nail in the coffin of his finance career.

People first

Devin Thorpe soon began helping people around the world as his newfound passion. He was also working on his book “Financial Planning” at the time he visited China with his wife to teach in a university. Luckily he was connected with Forbes through a publicist, which provided a boost to his ambition to become an author. He also launched his YouTube channel at the same time. Till now, he has interviewed more than 600 celebrities including billionaires and top executives.

One thing that is common among these celebrities is that they all wanted to make a difference in the world.  He is also a passionate speaker and regularly speaks at various seminars, workshops, and conferences globally. He also volunteers 20 hours a week to his Rotary district.

You can change the world:

He spends the rest of the time in writing, conducting interviews, and sharing these interviews on podcasts.  He accomplishes a flow state of mind, when he is writing what he is extremely passionate about. He says that speaking sessions consume a lot of energy and need a lot of preparation.

The ultimate objective of any speaker is to wow his audiences. It needs hours of preparation before one is ready to speak. He also spoke at UN and that became a milestone in his career.  He was quite excited that business leaders were genuinely interested in using businesses for good and give back to the people.

His regrets and advice to young people

Devin Thorpe regrets the fact that he opted for finance as a career because of peer pressure. He says that one should follow their inner call and should not listen to anyone as far as choosing their career is concerned. To succeed in any stream of career, you must be passionate about it. If you don’t feel passionate, you can never achieve ultimate success in that domain. Here is a list of some of the books they Devin Thorpe has written.

Devin Thorpe’s Books

925 Ideas to Help You save Money, Get Out of Debt and Retire a Millionaire: So You Can Leave Your Mark on the World (Dec 19, 2012)

Want to be happy with your money? This book by Thorpe is a collection of more than 150 essays on personal and family finance to help you fix your financial woes. It contains tips to be frugal and how invest smartly. 925 Ideas is an incredible book that will help you live a life of financial freedom and peace.  It contains tips on topics such as finding agreement between you and your spouse on money matters, teaching your kids about the value of money, financing your children’s college education, and living life like a millionaire.

Don’t Just Build a Network, Build a Movement  (2 August 2016)

A collections of essays from author Devin D. Thorpe that contains tons of ideas about building a sales network, especially for a social cause and turn it into a movement like force.

Crowdfunding for Social Good: Financing Your Mark on the World (Jul 27, 2013)

A Devin Thorpe’s account of practical and inspiring stories from real life about crowd funding for Social Welfare! How they successfully raised huge funds using crowd funding and actionable tips to enable you to do it.

Your Mark On The World: Stories of service that show us how to give more with a purpose without giving up what’s most important. (Jul 20, 2012)

This book will help you to become the best version of yours. Devin Thorpe has worked very hard to compile his experiences and knowledge to give you practical insights about earning the best returns on your investments without indulging into unnecessary risks. He also offers tips about saving more for your future without compromising with the quality of your life. So, the book will not only help you to live a wealthy life, but also prepare you to leave your mark on the world.

Building Wealth for Building the Kingdom: A Financial Planning Guide for Latter-day Saint Families  (Jan 10, 2012)

It’s a simple but practical book from Devin Thorpe about personal finance that will help you to achieve all your financial goals, i.e. how to retire rich and how to finance the higher education for your kids, etc. It will help you take decisions that will change your life forever by learning to save hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Adding Profit by Adding Purpose: The CFO’s CSR Handbook (May 8, 2016)

Do you want to grow a corporate social responsibility program? If you are a CEO or CFO, it can be the ultimate source of information for you. Focused towards C Suite, Devin’s compelling book has actionable tips and ideas for office workers, entrepreneurs and executives alike.

Changing the world as an author, speaker and champion of social good

Devin Porte has achieved a lot in a short span of time as an author, educator and speaker. He calls himself a champion of social good.

He is striving hard to solve some of biggest and most complex universal problems through his work, such as poverty, healthcare issues and environment. His books on personal finance, crowd funding and CSR are read by more than 1 million readers worldwide.

Apart from his keynote at the United Nations, he gets various opportunities to speak in countries like Russia, Brazil, Canada, Australia and many other nations in the world, apart from the US. He has also worked in U.S. Senate Banking Committee staff.