Tag: pdf files

 
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How to Write a User-Friendly eBook

Right now, someone, somewhere will be embarking on the writing of an eBook. Why? Some do it to make some money; itís one of the easiest ways to start an online business.

Others do it to share information they may have for those in similar financial, social or medical situations; maybe you want to share how you beat cancer or how you got out of debt.
Whatever your reason, there are some basic rules to consider that will make the final product more professional and. So, let look at some of them.

Anyone that embarks on writing an eBook will undoubtedly have read many as well. You will know from this that you must write in an appealing way that maintains the readerís attention. After all, you want them to read ALL your eBook donít you? Plus, youíll want them to come back for more if you are building an online business.

There are many tricks you can use to keep your readersí attention.

Anecdotes give practical examples of what you are trying to explain. These give readers confidence that what you are saying really does work. They are also a great way of explaining complicated topics.

Images are also a powerful tool. They can make topics clearer and they will stick in a readerís mind longer than 5000 words of text. They also break the eBook up and give the reader ìmarkersî to parts that interest them.

Note-boxes or sidebars are also good for summarizing a point or providing additional information. Like images, they break the text up and make the reading experience more enjoyable.

Write in a conversational style so the reader feels that you are talking just to them. This way they feel that they are the only one benefiting from your information and that makes it more valuable to them.

Donít write long sentences or paragraphs. They become difficult to read and detract from the experience. Your eBook is more likely to be put down and not picked up again.

You should also change the length of your paragraphs and sentences so you donít send your readers to sleep. Blocks of text that are all the same length will lose the readerís attention and youíll be lucky of they are awake by Page 10!

We mentioned earlier the use of images as a way of breaking up text. It may be that you canít use images to any great extent; but there are other tricks.

A very powerful one is the use of numbered and bulleted lists. Even with the most basic of word-processing programs you can include different types of bullets and even use custom pictures as bullet icons. These make your topic easier for the reader to absorb and also to give them a mental break from blocks of text.

Finally, think about the design of your eBook. Select a font that’s easy to read, and stick to it. You may be tempted to change fonts as a way of trying to make it more interesting. Donít. All it does is confuse your readers and they will switch-off.

I recommend either one and a half or double line spacing. Spacing the lines too far apart make it difficult for the reader to track where they are. Too close makes it dull.

Also, choose a font size that is in proportion to the line spacing you are using. You can get away with a larger font (say 14 point) with 1.5 line spacing but 8 point will look weird. Experiment with different combinations to find one that suits you but remember – what looks OK on the screen may look dreadful in print. Think about how your readers are probably going to read the final eBook (most print PDF eBooks ñ the idea of the paperless world is myth!).

Lastly, add page numbers and a header to each page with the title of your eBook. Iíve lost count of the number of times I have been infuriated by the number of eBooks that donít have page numbers. Also, adding a title in the header is a good way of reminding the reader what they are reading and who wrote it. Donít overcrowd headers and footers but use them wisely to give branding to the eBook (your company name or web address if you sell online).

Most importantly, don’t forget to do a proper spelling and grammar check. You can even go to somewhere like elance.com and get someone to proof read it for you (for a fee). Itís worth it to end up with a credible eBook.

Like it or not, you and your topic will be judged by the standard of spelling and punctuation. Donít shortcut on quality for fear of some criticism. Itís better to find out before it is published.

That’s it! By following the simple steps above you have just written your eBook. All that is left for you to do is publish it online and get visitors to your website so they can read it. But those topics are a whole new ball-game and best left for another day.

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Ebooks Are Raking It In

Have you always wanted an unlimited income that you didn’t have to leave the comfort of your own home for? Have you ever thought about becoming a writer, and publishing books? Well, many people have become well-known authors, and have made quite a bit of money writing books, but it seems that even more are making a lot more money writing ebooks.

Ebooks can be a very valuable asset. Let me just list a few of the reasons why they have become so popular. First of all, paper books take what seems an eternity to get published, not to mention that it costs quite a bit of money in printing, and postage, and handling, and stuff. Ebooks do not have a publishing cost, plus ebooks are digital. They can be emailed to your client directly, or they can download the ebook from your website, giving them instant gratification, which everyone loves. They are also digitally stored, so you don’t have all kinds of books cluttering up your house.

Ebooks also stay there, on the internet, indefinately, if you will, making money for you, while you sit back, on the beach, contemplating what you will be writing your next ebook about. That’s right, you can just relax while your ebook sits on your website, making you money. Many people are just raking in the dough from ebooks today. But, you will need to use some tools (there are links on my website to access these tools) to make sure that there is enough traffic being directed to your site.

There are all sorts of ways to bring traffic to your site, like writing articles, (like the one written here), using autoresponders, and buying mailing lists. My mentors, whom I have links to on my website, offer many tools and tips for driving traffic to your site. One tip is to build the customers trust, by offering plenty of free stuff. Free PDF files are a hot item to offer for free, because people can pass them around freely, appealing to more of a mass market. And any computer with Adobe Reader, (which can be downloaded for free), can read these types of files.
PDF files are also considered valuable to search engines, thus making it easier for customers to find your site.

There are many other ways to get traffic to your site, and many other methods of making money online, but writing ebooks is one of the easiest, and most profitable ways. For more information, please go to my website, and check out my links. If you register with my site, I will send you some simply amazing reports, with tons of invaluable information, all for FREE! Go there now! Take the step, learn something new. Learn something proven to make money!

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Information at What Price? Exploring fee-based e-content

In pursuit of a paid model for content, many businesses offer newsletters for a fee or ebooks. These models offer pros and cons. Some organizations send out two newsletters: fee and free. The free version has the basic, watered-down contents found in the fee version to entice readers into wanting more and paying for it. But is it worth the time and energy to do this?

Ebooks are also a way for businesses to make money. But do they sell when it’s been proven that people prefer reading printed copy to electronic text? Read on to hear from several experts in the field about what people are willing to pay for and whether or not offering fee-based content is right for your organization.

<strong>Too much information!</strong>

Considering there are so many free newsletters and information out there, why should readers shell out the dough for these premium newsletters? Reading online is harder on the eyes because of the light emitted from the monitor. People overcome this by printing out the newsletter.

I can’t hazard a guess on how many free newsletters are out there. So why would a person pay for a fee-based newsletter? Jenna Glatzer, editor-in-chief of AbsoluteWrite.com, says, “You have to offer something different and better than what the free newsletters are doing. Personally, I wouldn’t pay for newsletters that are just for entertainment, but I do have paid subscriptions to a handful of newsletters that are specific to my line of work and appropriate for my level (not beginner). A paid newsletter that has all the same sorts of free-reprint articles that all the other sites have won’t work. You must find a corner of the market that no one has claimed yet and be the most reliable source of information on it.”

Joan Stewart, publisher of The Publicity Hound, started her subscription newsletter seven years ago, long before there was as much information on the Internet as there is today. She says, “Content must be king. If you can supply good content that can’t be found elsewhere, and it’s well-written and easy to read, and leads readers in other directions where they can find even more info than they could possibly need, you will keep your customers happy.

“If I had it to do over again, I would have never started my subscription newsletter. It started as an 8-page print newsletter, but the postage and printing costs were killing me,” she says. “About two years ago, I reverted from a print newsletter to a PDF document. It’s in the same format, but it’s now emailed to customers. My free ezine, The Publicity Hound’s Tips of the Week, is still far more profitable, several hundredfold, than the subscription newsletter.”

<strong>Charging for ebooks</strong>

Considering there are no printing and paper costs to the publisher for ebooks, how can they charge as much as they do for them? Higher prices equal higher perceived value. However, I’ve seen many ebooks cost more than a paperback, and the content isn’t always better quality than print. Yet, they sell.

What justifies the higher cost of ebooks when there are no printing costs involved with them? Christopher Knight, publisher of Ezine-Tips, says, “What justifies the higher cost of ebooks when there are no printing costs involved with them? Christopher Knight, publisher of Ezine-Tips, says, ‘That would be a fallacy in perception logic because the printing cost is not relevant to the market perception of a paperback versus an ebook. In fact, I’d be willing to bet that some people even value an ebook as higher value than a paperback because they can take their data with them on a personal notebook computer, whereas it’s hard to travel with a pile of paperback books.'”

Glatzer points out that whether a piece is written in print or ebook format, it is the same amount of work for the writer. “Of course, ebooks have a smaller market, so the problem is that if the ebook is priced very low, it won’t be worth it for the writer to spend the time writing and promoting the book.”

If it is worth it, however, ebooks provide many benefits to those who download them: The readers aren’t taxed, don’t incur shipping costs and don’t need gas money to go to the bookstore. As soon as people buy your ebook, they instantly download it and have it in their “e-hands.”

Stewart says, “The biggest justification is that the information is immediate. If a customer wants information NOW, they can get it NOW, and they’re often willing to pay the hefty price. My ebook, How to Be a Kick-Butt Publicity Hound, sells for $97. The most I could expect to get for the same book in hardcover is about $25. Another justification for the higher priced ebooks is that live links in the ebooks take visitors directly to Web sites with related content.”

<strong>E-format versus print format</strong>

Research on ebooks indicates people still prefer paper over ebooks. What’s the point of pursuing ebooks and fee-based newsletters? Glatzer shares her experience.

“I’ve written two ebooks and 14 print books, so that shows you where my bread and butter comes from. However, I had my newsletter first. It was thriving, yet I had nothing to sell my readers. I was barely breaking even with advertising costs and often paying hosting fees out of pocket. I’d received so many letters from readers asking for advice about how to do what I had done — make a living writing for magazines — and finally decided to write a book about it. I knew I had a built-in audience among my subscribers. The ebook sold well, but my goal was to take it to print. When a publisher made an offer on it, I took it out of circulation as an e-book and expanded it for the print publisher. That became Make a Real Living as a Freelance Writer, and the print book has far outsold the ebook.

“The second was a niche book for greeting card writers and artists. It contained market info for just that field, so it was such a specialized book that I didn’t go after conventional publishers for it. Plus, the time factor was crucial: contact info changes so often that I wanted to get the book out ASAP, and I wanted to be able to update it when needed. I briefly had it out as a print-on-demand book, but I took it off the market as soon as it became dated and just continued selling it as an ebook.

“Since then, I’ve stuck to conventional publishing and just a few giveaway ebooks for publicity. But I think the market for ebooks is decent if you have a specialized topic and a built-in audience.”

Based on Glatzer’s experience, when you have a free newsletter, you already have an audience … unless you try to sell a book on home makeovers to your audience that subscribes to your pets newsletter!

<strong>Timely matters</strong>

Ebooks have an advantage over print in that their content is up-to-date and piping hot. If something changes, it’s quick and easy to modify the ebook and put the new version up for sale. The publishing process for printed books can be a lengthy one.

Time can impact content depending on the topic. Some industries such as sports and history have experienced little or no change in over a decade, while others like technology are moving at megahertz speed.

By the time an author of a book related to software writes it, and the publisher prints it, a new version of the software is available, rendering the brand-new book outdated. However, many users don’t upgrade every version, as this stings the cash flow. Often, tips and steps given in books covering earlier versions of software are applicable to the newer version.

Knight suggests selling in both formats (print and ebook); that way all your bases are covered and you reach more channels for the same product.

<strong>eContent = lower quality?</strong>

M.J. Rose, Wired columnist and author of both print and electronic books, has commented that people thought she wasn’t a real author when she published her ebook. For some, ebooks are “bottom-feeders” in the world of publishing. They see such content as lower quality and without prestige.

I have a folder of all the books I’ve collected through reviewer duties and as free downloads. I haven’t read 10 percent of them. However, it could be a different story when you pay for an ebook. Knowing that you bought the book might force you to read it. But then again, I have shelves of printed books that I have yet to read.

Why would I want to buy ebooks and let them rot on my hard drive where I naturally save them after downloading them? Same reason for printed books? I don’t think so, because you can see and touch them. It’s easier to scan printed pages than to scroll electronic books.

<strong>Fee-based newsletters</strong>

Most of the fee-based newsletters I’ve seen have a free newsletter distributed by the same people. Organizations use the free newsletter to entice readers into subscribing to the fee-based newsletter. Like Glatzer says, you’re establishing credibility with your audience through the free newsletter, and when they see another offering from you, they might jump at it. Glatzer publishes Absolute Write, free Absolute Markets and Absolute Markets Premium Edition newsletters. Free Absolute Markets comes out every other week and the premium edition comes out in between those issues.

Glatzer explains the difference between the free and premium editions. The free markets contains a small sampling, about 10 markets covering mainly magazine-related work plus contest listings or an article in alternating issues. The premium edition has many jobs and lists markets for various types of writing including international markets. It also includes interviews with magazine editors and an in-depth look at a high profile magazine on a monthly basis. She also lists calls for writers from editors who know her and those calls won’t be found anywhere else online.

Glatzer decided to offer the fee-based newsletter because there wasn’t anything like the Absolute Markets Premium Edition with its 50 pages of markets. She believed that a $15 fee for a yearly subscription more than pays itself if writers land one assignment from the newsletter’s resources. Furthermore, it saves the writers’ time spent searching for job listings. In determining what to charge, Glatzer and her colleagues researched what publishers charged for similar newsletters in other fields such as casting calls for actors.

In determining how much to charge for her fee-based newsletter, Stewart asked herself, “How much would I be willing to pay?” The Publicity Hound, her eight-paged, bi-monthly, fee-based subscription newsletter costs $9 per issue or $49.95 for a one-year subscription (six issues) and has more single-copy buyers than subscribers.

<strong>Selling ebooks and fee-based newsletters</strong>

If you decide to sell ebooks and newsletters for a fee, Glatzer recommends getting lots of reviews and interviews for ebooks. For newsletters, she says, “I think you need to establish credibility by offering free samples first. Make it easy for people to subscribe by offering multiple payment options.”

Joan Stewart promotes articles in the fee-based newsletter in almost every issue of the free ezine. She also uses auto responder messages for people who buy single copies. About a week after the purchase, they receive a message thanking them for their order and asking if they would like to subscribe. Stewart shares her list of what works and what doesn’t work when selling ebooks and fee-based newsletters:

<b>What works:</b>
<ul>
<li>The product must be content-rich.</li>
<li>It must include lots of links to other resources.</li>
<li>Even if it includes hotlinks to other products, it must cover topics that readers would be interested in.</li>
<li>The product must be top-quality, which means free of typos, and it must be easy to read. (16-point type for ebooks.) </li>
</ul>

<b>What doesn’t work</b>:
<ul>
<li> Information that’s outdated. Special reports and ebooks must be updated at least once a year. I have a special report called “Fly High with Publicity in In-flight Magazines.” It includes contact info for 30 in-flight magazines. It’s a real pain to update this annually, but readers will jump down my throat if I don’t.</li>
<li> Products that are little more than sales pitches for other things the author sells (consulting services, etc.).</li>
<li>Products that don’t promise what they deliver.</li>
<li>Lousy customer service. Buyers expect a human being to reply to their email messages or answer the phone if they have problems downloading the product, or other concerns. I have bought ebooks from some well-known Internet marketers who refuse to return my phone calls when I call them for help. I no longer buy from those people. </li>
</ul>

Steer clear of joining discussion groups solely for spamming the list about your ebook or newsletters. “It irritates the heck out of people,” Glatzer says.

She promotes her fee-based newsletter through advertising in other writing-related ezines and some paid Google ads; she also advertises it in her own free newsletters, and she sponsors writing contests and conferences in exchange for newsletter mentions. Glatzer says, “We do a lot of promotion for the site and all newsletters in general; people subscribe to our free newsletters for a while, so they can determine we’re worth the bucks!”

Fee-based newsletters are out there and won’t go away soon. Authors churn out ebooks every day in spite of data supporting that people heavily prefer print over electronic versions. Ebooks prices continue to equal or surpass printed books.

Knight ends the discussion. “The best will survive and rise to the top as they always naturally do, while those who don’t step up to the plate and innovate like mad will get left in the digital dust.” Amen.

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How To Write Lightening Fast Ebooks

The quickest way the write you own eBooks is by using the expert interview process. What I mean by this is, approaching some experts in the field your writing the book on and asking them to agree to do an interview.

If you approach these experts correctly, they will provide you with expert responses to all your questions. You will find these experts by checking search engines or related niche forums.

The easiest way to contact these experts, is by email with a list of questions. Before you submit questions or contact your expert, do your research on him/her. You need to approach these experts correctly therefore you need to consider the following points.

Keep your questions short and too the point: You will turn the person off if you are asking long winded questions, long questions lead to long answers and you donít want your expert to spend too much time.

Give a good introduction of yourself at the start of the email. You will have a better chance of reply because the respondent can evaluate you.

Take care of spelling and grammar: One spelling/grammar mistake could destroy your chances of getting the interview.

Have a deadline: You must have a deadline. This will help you plan your writing better and it will force your respondent to reply quicker.

Object of the interview: You must let the respondent know what the interview is for. For example is it for an ebook to resell or a free bonus to give away.

Appreciate the respondent: Let the expert know that you are a fan of his/her business or website etc. This helps get a much more positive response.

Something in return: The responder has to get something in return. He/She is not going to give time to do the interview for nothing. An example of an offer would usually consist of offering to share the profits of the ebook.

So believe me when I say this, if you approach these experts correctly you could get a huge volume of feedback and enough material to combine a best selling eboook

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Old Reference Works Revived

Why are people so interested in outdated and outmoded reference, typically rendered obsolete by subsequent research?

There is no source of reference remotely as authoritative as the Encyclopaedia Britannica. There is no brand as venerable and as veteran as this mammoth labour of knowledge and ideas established in 1768. It numbered the likes of Einstein and Freud among its authors. Dozens of classic articles written by such luminaries are available on the Britannica’s Web Site and included in its CD-ROM and DVD editions.

This is the tip of an iceberg of revival of old reference works.

The full text of the venerable 1911 edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica is now available online and is in the public domain. Regrettably, there is no CD-ROM or DVD to be had of this opus magnum written by the best minds at the turn of the 20th century. Nor can one download the Encyclopedia as separate compressed files. Additionally, the transcription is far from perfect with many an article either truncated or mysteriously divided. Still, it is a grand and welcome undertaking.

Another sorely needed contribution is the Jewish Encyclopedia online. The only other project of this scope, the Encyclopedia Judaica on CD-ROM will be withdrawn from the market by January 2006 and is anyhow incompatible with any operating system later than Windows ME.

Exactly like the Britannica, the Jewish Encyclopedia was compiled at the turn of the previous century and, therefore, lacks any coverage of the important events that took place in the life of the Jewish people – from the Holocaust to the State of Israel. But, with 4000 years of history to go on, the Jewish Encyclopedia is still a vast, indispensable, and deeply researched resource. It is also better adapted to the technological constraints of the Web. Still, it, too, offers no way of acquiring the whole work: no CD-ROM or DVD, no downloadable compressed files.

By far the best among the three is the Catholic Encyclopedia. The 1904 edition of this magnificent work of reference is fully and freely available online. The commercial CD-ROM includes all 11,600 articles (which I found to be surprisingly objective and free of religious bias). But both the Web site and the CD contain reams of additional material: from the writings of the Church Fathers to numerous foundational texts in the history of Catholicism.

The Web site itself is rich, easy to navigate, expertly done – but not cluttered or cutesy. The CD is a faithful rendition of the Encyclopedia’s Web presence – yet not a mere mirror. It takes advantage of search and other CD-only features and is user-friendly, not resource-hogging, easy to install and to run even on the Windows 98 SE 1996 laptop I used as a worst-scenario test bench.

Why are people so interested in outdated and outmoded reference, typically rendered obsolete by subsequent research?

Nostalgia is part of the answer. These works of reference are refreshingly direct, politically incorrect, opinionated, and innocently naive. They are reminiscent of another, more promising, age. Curiosity is another reason. What did our forefathers know or thought they knew about heredity, nationalism, the atom, the Jews, and germs? It is startling to discover both how far we have progressed and how much we have forgotten.

Then there is the trivia. Mountains of little-known facts about long-forgotten people, countries, politics, arts, and crafts. It is the closest we can get to time-travel and, so it seems, equally exciting. By exploring our roots, we get to know ourselves and in this narcissistic age and civilization – who can resist such a proposition?

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Newbies Tips, Definitions, Download pages, and E-books

Here are two of the most common questions from Newbies. One is technical the other is Marketing related.

IS A….

COMPUTER: That thing thatís really clever but doesnít understand anything you tell it to do! It looks like a TV, but if you spend enough time in front of it, you will make money from it.
ISP: Internet Service Provider
SERVER: A computer that stores web page files and makes them available to the internet.
DNS: Domain Name Server, The address of the server, it looks like this ###.###.###.### or this, NS1.XXXXXXXX.COM (XXX = a word, and ### = a number)
DOMAIN:Is a unique set of characters used to identify a piece of cyberspace. These characters are called a ëDOMAIN NAMEí, NO TWO CAN BE THE SAME. They look like MMM.XXXXXX.com/net/web,etc..( MMM = www)
PARKED DOMAIN:A Domain name that has been registered but hasnít been HOSTED.
HOSTING: The service that provides a SERVER for a DOMAIN.

So we can see that a DOMAIN can be HOSTED on a SERVER and then files can be added to the ëDOMAINí and this will give you aÖ..

WEBSITE: All the files hosted on a server and are available on the internet using the unique ëDOMAIN NAMEí
WEBPAGE: Any ONE of the Files (pages) on a WEBSITE they each have an NAME that comes after the DOMAIN NAME. Like this; MMM.XXXX.com/NAME
URL: The address of any WEBPAGE
HTML: Is the base language from which web pages are made.
SOURCE CODE: Is HTML

Here are two of the most common questions from Newbies. One is technical the other is Marketing related.

How do I make my hyperlink open in a new window and why do I want that to happen?

HEREîS HOW in response to a question I received recently about creating a ëDownload pageí
It answers the above questions and gives some other valuable tips.

TIP #1
Hi, I clicked on your XXXXX link and found that it worked fine. However, it loaded the XXXXX page in the same window as yours, so I was taken away from your download page, very inconvenient for someone trying to download.

To fix it do this: Add ìtarget=_blankî into the code after the URL. Make sure you save your original page first and work on a copy, then when your copy is done upload it and test it, then save it as the original on your desk top, then upload the new original to your server. Done!

(In this example I use [ ] instead of V brackets, to make this publishable.)

Tip #2

Hereís a friendly way make prospects SAVE YOUR EBOOK full of your links on their computer.
If you don’t do this they might just look at the ebook in their browser and then close it. You will have lost them maybe for ever, but if you made them save it onto their hard drive; you will always get another chance, even if they remove themselves from your mailing list. The links are still in the E book on their computer, and who knows when they might open it again and go click!

HEREíS HOW: Just use this as a guide.

Step Two: “NAME OF THE EBOOK” ëRight Click Hereí and select ‘Save Target as’ or ‘Save Link as’ (Mozilla) option from the pop-up window to download the eBook. Then Save the eBook to a location on your hard drive where you can easily find it. Make a note of the location that you’ve saved it to so you can easily access it again in the future.

NOTE: Add the “target=_blank” code to the “right click here” link, so that if they just left click and load to their browser at least your download page (with a link back to home) is still on their desk top!

WHY HAVE LINKS OPEN IN A NEW WINDOW?

Adding “target=_blank” to all links on a home page will keep the home page on the prospects desk top for as long as possible this will increase the chances of a sign up!

WARNING!!! DONíT use the code to open a new window on links back to your home page this will just annoy people.
Below, is a complete template for a typical download page. I have used ëí to indicate the hyperlinks. You should use ìtarget=_blankî on all links except the one that takes them home.

TEMPLATE

Step One: You will need XXsoftwareXX to read the E-book. If you do not have it installed on your computer, Please ëCLICK HEREí to get the software.

Step Two: “NAME OF THE EBOOK” ëRight Click Hereí and select ‘Save Target as’ or ‘Save Link as’ (Mozilla) option from the pop-up window to download the eBook.

Step Three: Save the eBook to a location on your hard drive where you can find it easily. Make a note of the location where you saved it, so that you can easily access it again in the future.

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