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Random Thoughts by Ivan Rico

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Publishing your novel or nonfiction book may sound like a dream come true. You can get your novel or book published at any time you choose through self publishing companies and services like CreateSpace.com and Lulu. But if you want to make money with your books, establish a reputation, and live the writer’s dream, then you need to do more than just shove your manuscript into an eBook converter.
Preparing for self publication takes just as much work, if not more, than preparing for traditional publication. It’s an incredible process that allows you a great deal of creativity and control. Before you get started though, you need to know some of the things that you should never ever do if you want to be a successful author.

Never Reuse an ISBN Code


“One ISBN number can be used on 1 book”

Reusing an ISBN code is one of those mistakes that even a lot of supposedly professional authors make when they decide to self publish. When you self publish, it’s best to pick up your own ISBN codes even though you can buy them through services from sites like CreateSpace.com. It allows you the maximum flexibility to move between self publishing companies. Because it’s cheaper to purchase ISBN codes in bulk, many authors choose the package option, but it can still cost hundreds of dollars.
The temptation that some self published authors run into is when they publish an eBook and it does not do as well as they wanted it to. Instead of retargeting their marketing or revising the eBook, they decide it would be better to reuse the ISBN code. Unfortunately, this makes the ISBN code worthless, and it can cause buyer confusion. It is a unique identifier. Once you add it to your book, consider it done.

Never Use Other People’s Work Without Permission


“Copying other’s content can land you in trouble”

Authors sometimes assume that it’s all right to use song lyrics, artwork, and photos in their eBooks without getting permission from the creator. It’s ironic because it’s a violation of copyright laws that protect the author’s work from similar usage. Many authors assume that fair use will cover their incorporation of the other artist’s creative expression. Never assume this. Even if you are able to assure yourself that it is fair use, make sure that you take the time to ask permission from the artist. If the artist refuses, honor his wishes. If he grants permission, then you can use them. The Book Designer recommends asking permission to not only avoid risk of copyright infringement claims but also to develop and maintain positive relationships with other artists. You don’t want to harm your brand or your author’s platform by fending off claims of copyright infringement and theft.
Remember that the self publishing company you use will not generally check for that information. Even publishing service packages that you can purchase from sites like CreateSpace.com and Author House do not generally check to see whether you are infringing on someone else’s copyright. The terms and agreements in your operating agreement will specifically detail whether this is the case.

Never Use Artistic Fonts Without Checking Whether They Can Be Embedded


“Artistic fonts may be hard to read for some audiences”

It’s tempting to download artistic fonts or choose from a selection you find on your word processor. You should avoid that temptation. True fonts typically work best for eBook and regular book publishing. In general, your text should be in Arial Narrow, Arial, Times New Roman, or Courier New. These fonts typically work best on the eyes. You don’t want to make it harder on your readers. When it comes to book covers though, you may not want to use a font at all. A good creative designer can create an artistic font in a graphic image that has all of the content embedded. Otherwise, opt for true fonts that can be embedded and avoid corrupting your eBook file on various mobile devices.

Never Put Odd Numbered Pages on the Left or Even Numbered Pages on the Right


“Improper page numbering may also confuse your audience”

It may seem like a little thing, but your pages should always follow standard publishing protocols. Many self published authors don’t realize it even though they have seen it countless times. Books open on the right page with that page being number one. All following odd numbered pages must be on the right side. All even numbered pages must be on the left. Follow this standard even when preparing for your eBook. Some eBook readers include features that allow you to see the book like a regular book with two pages. Following pagination protocols makes it feel more organic.

Never Forget to Justify Your Paragraphs


“Work on formatting your content before publishing your eBook”

In “Book Design to Sell: 5 Book Interior Page Layout Mistakes to Avoid,” Joel Friedlander warns that one of the worst mistakes a self published author can make is to forget to justify his paragraphs. It comes in right beneath putting odd numbered pages on the left.
Again, it might seem like a very little thing, but justifying your paragraphs in your eBook and regular book makes the book easier to read. Your readers expect it. The little details make a tremendous difference in the success of your eBook and in making it look as professional as a best seller. Using left justified paragraphs makes you look like an amateur.

Never Assume the Readers Will Just Come


“You’ll have to market your books yourself”

There’s a reason that most self publishing companies like CreateSpace.com don’t offer full marketing services: marketing is one of the hardest parts about self publishing. If you plan to choose create space for publishing then you must read its reviews here: http://ebookselfpublishingsecrets.net/review/createspace/. A site like createspace.com doesn’t provide marketing services because it is impossible to market a book from a writer’s perspective. It takes tremendous effort, and no one will be more invested in it than you are. Many self published authors assume that if they create the content, then their readers will naturally come. It’s a common mistake, and it’s part of the reason that many self published authors never exceed 100 sales.
Before you even release your eBook, you should be creating hype and a marketing plan to promote the book. You don’t want to wait until it has sunk to the bottom of the ratings and you have lost the momentum of the initial release. While you can always work to regain that momentum, it’s easiest if you start out with a plan. Work to develop your author’s platform. Develop your ideas and find ways to connect with your audience. This way when you release your eBook or book, you can release it to an excited audience, an audience who wants more of what your work.

Never Assume Your Work Is Done

When you self publish, you enter into a constant work cycle. It’s an incredible one, and many authors can find it to be quite fulfilling. Whether you are creating new eBooks or working on promotions, your work is never really done. A common saying in the writing world is that the best way to market a book is to write another one. Take this to heart. As soon as you release one eBook, start working on the next one. So long as you write a well developed eBook, whether fiction or nonfiction, you will find your audience growing. In time, you can create an authoritative brand with an audience that clamors for your work. But you won’t get there by assuming that the work is done after you release your first eBook. That first eBook is just the beginning.

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Many people have given cleaning an attention because of the many sicknesses and ailments that they discover. They find they are getting fat, they go for a cleansing. What works, what does not? What works and stays working as a lifestyle? What works for a while and gets worse after?

Cleansing Concept

The concept of cleansing is the ability of the body to detoxify. After certain eating habits, usually bad, toxins accumulate. Cleansing, as the term used to mean doing something purposely to detoxify, has been popularly accepted because people realize that something is wrong with them.

Where Toxin Comes From

Geographically, the Western people seem to have more toxin problems than the Eastern people. Between Americans and the traditional Chinese or Japanese, where can you find obese people? Obesity is toxins crying out loud to be released. What is it that the Americans have a lot of that the Chinese or Japanese have a very few of? Fastfood chains. Between the two geographical areas, where are there more smokers? What people drink alcohol to addiction? Who drinks more soda? There is a documentary where a healthy man undergone an experiment. For 30 days he ate only from the particular fastfood. He was not allowed to eat any other from breakfast to dinner. He almost did not make it to the end. He went very sick. It was concluded that something considered food can kill.

Popular Fast Cleansing Method

One of the most popular methods of cleansing is the Master Cleanse. It is claimed to make one lose 20 pounds in 10 days. The concept is to drink the lemonade diet for at least 10 days and not take in any solid food. The diet includes 4 cups of salt water every morning, herbal laxative every night and around 10 glasses of the lemonade concoction throughout the day which includes maple syrup and cayenne pepper.

try the master cleanse.

try the master cleanse.

For sure this will drain you of your toxins but since there is not enough nutrition to keep you normal through the day, once you finish the diet and start eating what you usually eat, you will get back what you lost faster plus more. There are other health risks. Before plunging into it you have to check with your doctor first.

What You Need Daily

There are basically two classifications of food: macronutrients and micronutrients. Micronutrients are calorie-free vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals which can be gotten from raw vegetables, fruits and raw nuts. Macronutrients are all the rest, which are carbohydrates, meat protein and fat. Give yourself an “overdose” of micronutrients in chewing form and juice form to maximize the nutrients and fiber at the same time. Toxins will be pushed out as the nutrients heal your body. Remember to drink lots of water throughout the day also; at least 8 glasses.

Although macronutrients and

Although macronutrients and

Cleansing is good. It is a way to remove what really harms your body. It should be the right way, though. You just cannot push out toxins without replacing them with real food, that with micronutrients. You will not only get cleansed of the toxin, you will also be healed of other health problems. You will only get better. You do not have to starve, you just have to choose the kind of food you have to eat.

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There are thousands of iPhone applications now out on the market. Kids particularly enjoy playing apps on iPhone. Which brings the question: Are these apps good for the kids? Well, that actually depends on how you would define “good apps for kids”. Childhood is the best time to teach children, they are like sponge that will absorb nearly all information provided. They are in the stage of curiosity and eagerness to learn. And since kids enjoy apps, you better take advantage of that opportunity. Let them learn while enjoying at the same time.

Here are 10 best iPhone apps for your kids, in no particular order:

Jacob’s Shapes

It is a cute app that allows the child to learn about different shapes and names of objects. It has puzzles, wherein the kids are instructed to fit a particular object on the corresponding silhouette, if correctly placed, the name of the object is pronounced.

  • Price: $1.99

  • 3-6 years old

I'm creating "Jacob's Shapes"

I’m creating “Jacob’s Shapes”

Peekaboo Barn

It helps the child learn the names and sounds of different animals. Kids get to guess the name of the animal by hearing the sound that it makes.

  • Price: $1.99

  • 2-4 years old

Park Math

It helps the child learn basic math skills such as addition and subtraction. Kids can also learn how to count up to 50.

  • Price: $1.99

  • 4-6 years old

Preschool Adventure

It a cute and interactive game where the child can learn counting up to 10, learn the basic shapes, matching of colors, and matching of animals to their sounds.

  • Price: $0.99

  • 3-5 years old

Letter Writer Oceans

This cute app allows the child to learn the alphabets in a fun and adorable way. The kids can learn how to write the letters through a guided animation. The child also learns to match alphabets to words. Stories are unlocked once a letter is completed.

  • Price: $0.99

  • 2-5 years old

Weather and Clock for Kids

It is an interactive game where child is taught how to read time from an analogue and digital clock. It is very colorful, making it more appealing to the kid.

  • Price: $0.99

  • 4 years old and above

Math Bingo

It is like the basic bingo game but to get the number, the child must first answer the equation. The child can choose from addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, or a combination of all.

  • Price: $0.99

  • 4 years old and above

Barefoot World Atlas

This app allows the child to explore different regions of the world. The graphics are amazingly good.

  • Price: $4.99

  • 4 years old and above



Cut the Rope

This app will surely get the attention of your kid. It’s has a simple yet very cute graphics. With this app, your child gets to work on his problem solving skills. The child just needs to get the candy into the frog’s mouth by cutting the rope.

  • Price: $0.99

  • 4 years old and above

Super Why

In this app, your child can learn his language skills like rhyming, spelling, writing and reading. It features characters from a famous TV series, which includes Super Why. The child is rewarded with virtual stickers that can be kept in a collection book.

  • Price. $2.99

  • 4 years old and above

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Approaching a woman in a bar or club is tricky but only to those who aren’t use to it. If you are this kind of person, then the following tips will help you greatly:

1. Don’t buy women drinks out right. This is because women these days are kind of tricky as well. They will let you buy drink and leave you a few dollars poorer. So don’t buy them drinks unless you have spent some time with them or just finished dancing with them.

2. The best way to approach a woman at bars is to just show your smile and strike up casual conversation. Just is your open and easygoing personality. Have your conversation but don’t monopolize her time. Let her enjoy her friends and the club too. If you have strike a connection with her, you can ask her for a dance and/or her number and follow up later. The main goal is to make her feel relax with the conversation; relax enough to want to consider time to talk to you more.

3. Cheesy lines might not work on women these days. Some women get annoyed on being hit in bars that your cheesy lines might send out a warning signal. Again, just be casual about your opening. It can be a question or a gesture that will get her attention and an opening to strike out a conversation. One trick some men do is to converse loudly with a friend and then ask a nearby woman’s opinion on that subject. It is casual enough to trick the woman into the conversation. But again, sway away from thinking too much on tricking women. You can do this for starters as you get used to approaching them.

4. Observe before you do your move. You need to look at how the female who caught your eyes interact with other people in the bar. If she frowns a lot and walks away when someone approaches her, then she is not interested at all so you better shy away and not try to strike up a conversation – unless you are super confident on your prowess to disarm her wall.

5 Steps to Getting the Girl of

5 Steps to Getting the Girl of

5. Be confident and take things maturely. Every female that you encounter in a bar – especially in a bar as men approaching them in bars bear some negative stigma – has always something they don’t like on men who approach them. So be prepared for a setback all the time. But don’t let this affect you. if you are being turned down, go to the next. Just don’t do it right away that it becomes obvious you are hitting girls. But the thing is that don’t let a turn down scared you witless to interact with females who interest you. Don’t take it personally.

5 Ways to Approach a Girl in

5 Ways to Approach a Girl in

The thing is that if you are confident with yourself, you can easily strike up a casual conversation. And another truth is that any open lines can work, even the cheesy ones as long as you are confident with yourself. And if you want the woman you approach to get comfortable talking with, you have to be relaxed as well. As they always say, practice can make it perfect.

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You may not notice this, but you are producing large bills more than you actually use. Then there comes a time when a financial crisis strikes your home, and you are forced to alleviate this crisis as soon as possible. The most effective way to do this is to cut or reduce your bills and budget properly your expenses. It is very crucial that you manage your money wisely by budgeting carefully to pay-off any debt in the future. But the question now is how can you cut your bills in half?

There are a lot of ways to cut your bills in half; people just need to be more creative with a lot of things. If you happen to have no time thinking about creative ways to reduce your bills, here are a few effective suggestions that have been proven by millions of homeowners over the past decade.

1. Dealing with Groceries and Food

The bills for your groceries are one of the most highest, especially if you don’t restrict unnecessary grocery products and if you have kids in your household. You can start lowering your bills by planning your food meals. If you make meal plans ahead of time, you can budget your money whenever for your trips to the grocery stores. Another tip is to not waste food. Also buy produce within the season, because produce in season are generally cheaper. Also, substitute chocolates and other junk foods for kids with nutritious snacks like fruits and vegetables that are in season. This alone can dramatically cut your bills.

Whole Foods deal Reuters

Whole Foods deal Reuters

2. Manage Your Electricity Bills

Managing your electric bill can also dramatically reduce your bills in half if done properly. First thing to do is to hire a professional auditor to find alternatives for you to save energy at home. If you cannot afford one, then here are some helpful tips: If you have plenty of windows, use this to your advantage during the day and turn off your lights. If the weather is cold, open your windows so that there will be no need for air-conditioning. Also, be aware of the watts of all your bulbs in the house, and replace the larger ones with energy –efficient ones. Also, unplug all your electrical items when not in use, and never forget to turn off all your appliances when not needed.

3. Determine Your Miscellaneous Expenses and Eradicate Them

Yes, there is what you call miscellaneous expenses, and almost everyone has them. This can include your credit card bills, your night trips with friends. These miscellaneous expenses are sometimes not important, and a way to know this is to determine if you can still survive without these things. The key here is moderation and discipline. If you have gym memberships and don’t use them often, why not do your exercise at home? If you have cable TV and you never even have the time to watch them all, why not resort to DVDs for entertainment? All these can be done only, and with sheer determination, one can easily cut their bills in half.

 calculate their expenses

calculate their expenses

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Job applicants used to scout for possible employers the traditional way: buy a Sunday broadsheet, type the resume, get dressed properly, go to several targeted companies to drop off a resume and wait for the call from any of the companies. Sometimes, if job seekers are lucky, there might be some people they know who can recommend them to certain companies. Still, they get dressed and go to the company either to submit the resume or if the appointment is already set, a possible interview is being looked forward to already.

Today, however, the task has become a lot easier, faster and broader. It is easier because you no longer have to get dressed and do the legwork before you can submit a resume. It is faster because all you need is an internet connection. It is broader because you can scout several companies at the same time within the confines of your computer space.

Even for the online world, application became easier with the rising of social media like Facebook, Twiter, LinkedIn, BranchOut, SkillPages, etc. All harness the power of networking (the people you know could be the link to the job you are looking for) but the last 3 give you the chance to fill up your own profile as if filling up a resume. How can you find a job using these social media avenues?

How to Find a Job Using Social

How to Find a Job Using Social

Protect Your Reputation

Most of the people you know are probably already on Facebook and Twitter. While posting statuses that encourages and uplifts whoever gets to read them, rants are common. Some people treat their own walls as their right to just post about anything within the bounds of of the social networking sites. While this is true, it does not prevent others to read between the lines. What image are you projecting? One of your FB friends could be in need of your skills or services but if that person sees a hint of a character that will be damaging to his/her company then you just lost a possible employer.

Build on Your Reputation

It may take time before you can land on a job. While you are on the lookout, work on building your reputation online. Create your own personal blog which can highlight your abilities and strengths. Creating a blog at wordpress.com or blogspot.com is easy as following simple instructions. If writing is not your strength, you can ask someone to do the writing for you.

Be in the Habit of Helping

Just as bad reputation spreads fast, helping others in your network makes it easier to be found and known. Word of mouth goes further away from your very own network, which can reach potential employers. If you do digital services, you can showcase your work by helping others (eg. logo-making, writing, web page designing, etc.)

For additional tips on finding

For additional tips on finding

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