MIND LIKE WATER MONTHLY
Dedicated to helping the ebook community.
Issue #16: July 24, 2003
Publisher: Mind Like Water, Inc.
Thanks Diane, Bryan, Jeff and Greg for taking care of
things while I was gone on
vacation. What a great time we had! We drove from
KC to Colorado, Utah, Vegas, Death Valley, LA/Hollywood and back
-- all by car. Our trip could be the greatest contrast in vacations
ever. One day we were in a national park camped at the top
of a mountain and worried about growling sounds near our campsite,
while on another day we were lounging at the Treasure Island pool in Las Vegas.
Here in the U.S., our two-week vacation was considered
extraordinary. Meanwhile, my good friend J.P.
in France is starting a
month-long vacation. It's interesting that not too many
years ago, both Europe and the U.S. had roughly the same amount
of vacation days: 2 weeks. In the 60s, 70s and 80s, Europeans (especially labor
unions) pushed for more vacation, while
Americans pushed for higher salaries and less vacation. I believe
the average vacation in America now is somewhere between a
week and a long weekend. Maybe we need to quit taking ourselves so
seriously and join our European friends in a little fun.
Have you noticed the new look on our home page? If you
haven't, go ahead and take a
quick peak: http://www.mindlikewater.com.
You also may have noticed that we've begun promoting
several directories on our web
site. We call them directories, but others call
them niche, theme or topic web sites. In this issue's feature
article, I'll tell you why we're doing this.
Until next month,
Table of Contents
1. Feature Article: Building Niche Web Sites
2. eBook Author/Publisher Interview: Jennie S. Bev
3. Library Initiative Update
4. eBook Author Profile: Patricia Crossley
Feature Article: Building Niche Web Sites
Perhaps I've said this before, but I believe that many ebook authors,
publishers and Internet businesses still don't get it. I say
that because it took me a few years to really get it.
Niche content is King!
The entire Internet was built on the principle of sharing
information. Nothing has changed. Society
increasingly relies on the
Internet as the information source for the world. Internet customers
continue to need and demand highly current information that
they can't easily get anywhere else and that helps them in some
Opening up one's Internet browser and typing a keyword in
a search engine is the modern
day equivalent of the encyclopedia, dictionary
and friend who knows everything, all wrapped into one.
What is hard to remember is that most Web
surfers are looking for information.
Even a jewelry shopper wants information before he or
Last Friday, Mind Like Water was invited to give a
discussion on Internet
marketing for musicians at the International Guitar Music
Festival in St. Joseph, Missouri. Bryan rose to the occasion
and gave a great presentation. I mention this because musicians
are like ebook authors in many ways. They are extraordinarily
talented, motivated and intelligent, and they should
be making a decent living -- but most are not.
Our advice to the guitar musicians is the
same as our advice to you: Find
your niche online or don't even bother trying.
Stop right now and write down what makes your ebooks or
small business unique.
Once you know that, then it's time to determine what
people want within your given
niche. Next month I'll discuss how you can use a
few inexpensive tools to find what people are searching for, what
is in demand, and the type of content you need to provide.
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eBook Author/Publisher Interview: Jennie S. Bev
Diane: Accomplished author, columnist, instructional designer and business consultant are some of the terms
I've seen to describe what you
do. You were named 2003 EPPIE Award finalist for excellence
in electronic publishing under the Non-Fiction How-To category,
for your book FABJOB.COM GUIDE TO BECOME A MANAGEMENT CONSULTANT
Tell us a little about the EPPIE Award, and
its significance in the ebook
industry. What has receipt of this award meant to you personally?
Jennie: EPPIE is the highest award -- "the
Oscar" -- given in the electronic
publishing industry for non-subsidy and non self-published e-books. This means
all entries must be published by industry
publishers (mostly royalty-paying), which must be proven by
an agreement between the author and the publisher.
EPPIEs are awarded by an organization called EPIC
Internet Connection), a professional organization for authors
who have published electronically. Authors who have at least
one book published electronically may join. Their web site is
Being named a finalist in this highly prestigious event
is very humbling and provided
me with the boost I need to move forward in my
Diane: You are the Managing Editor of
What sets this web site apart from
others that provide book reviews, in terms of readers looking
for books and writers wanting their books reviewed?
Jennie: We review all books received and chosen to
be reviewed (including e-books)
professionally. We'll tell you like it is. This
might sound a bit harsh, but that's why book reviewers are badly
needed: to honestly tell the world about what we think about
your book so the readers can decide whether they want to read
it or not. We, of course, cannot guarantee a good book to become
Another thing that sets our services apart from other
reviewers is our "Three
Paths to Get Reviewed." While it is basically a free
service, we give two other paid options to guarantee the book
to be reviewed. These two options are the Expedited Review, in
which a title will be reviewed within ten working days, and the
Guaranteed Review, in which a title is guaranteed to be reviewed.
Too many reviewers accept unsolicited review copies only
to have them placed in the slush pile.
Our professional "Three Paths to Get
Reviewed" guarantees unbiased
review. This means regardless of whichever path you choose,
we will tell you like it is. No sugar coating. Our web site
Diane: More recently, you became the Publisher and
Editor-in-Chief of StyleCareer.com (http://www.stylecareer.com),
an epublisher specializing in
ebooks that help fashion job seekers break
into their dream careers. Tell us about your interest in this
niche ebook market, and how this publishing business came into
being. What is your long-term vision for StyleCareer.com?
Jennie: I see a huge demand in niche publishing
and this is something I'll be
focusing on in the long-term. StyleCareer.com is
my first manifestation as there are a few more coming, which will
focus on different topics.
As a writer and journalist, I have published numerous
articles about the apparel
industry and have interviewed dozens of fashion professionals.
Therefore I have this vast amount of knowledge about
the insider information, which is pretty difficult to gather
for an outsider. This sparked an idea to write books that actually
prepare fashion, image and beauty job seekers break into and
succeed in this highly lucrative and competitive field.
All titles published by StyleCareer.com thus contain the
insider tips not available
elsewhere that actually prepare job seekers for
the job or to start a business. For only a tiny fraction of most
professional workshops, readers of our eGuidebooks will learn
everything they need to know to get started and eventually succeed
in their chosen career.
Diane: Several new titles are scheduled to be
released by StyleCareer.com (http://www.stylecareer.com)
between now and October,
including eguides on becoming an image consultant, fashion
photographer, and model. Besides the fashion career eguides,
are there other writing projects you are currently involved
in or planning? If you had unlimited time and wanted to challenge
yourself, what book would you write?
Jennie: StyleCareer.com forthcoming titles include
image consultant, interior
decorator, fashion photographer, stylist, model,
hair salon owner and nail salon owner. A few more titles are
now being considered, so I am pretty occupied in the next few months.
For 2004, I will focus on more business-oriented and educational
My biggest goal is to eventually write a self-empowerment
book. I have had a column on
this topic and enjoyed it very much. I think everyone
must be able to empower him or herself to survive in this
highly competitive and, oftentimes, stressful world. To be able
to help people to help themselves is my simple wish. Hopefully,
after all 2004 goals are accomplished, I will be able to
find some quality time with my innermost to produce a good self-empowerment
Diane: What are the biggest challenges you face as
an epublisher, and what are
your strategies for meeting them?
Jennie: Promotion. Half of my working day is spent
on promoting StyleCareer.com
eGuides. This takes a lot of time, money and patience.
Only with well-planned marketing strategies can a new epublisher
survive in this harsh dot-com environment. Both online and
offline promotional methods must be executed smartly to ensure
the expected result. I'm still honing my skills on this as this
kind of stuff takes some time to master.
Bottom line is if you have an excellent product to sell
online, there must be a way to
get the words out. Without a good product, you've
got nothing at all.
-- Jennie S. Bev
Author, Columnist, Instructional Designer and Business Consultant
Managing Editor, BookReviewClub.com
Library Initiative Update
I'm still keeping track of what's going on at the Open eBook Forum
(http://www.openebook.org). For those of
you who are not aware of it, in
May 2003 the OeBF set up a Library Special Interest
Group. According to a press release, the group was formed
to enable publishers, ebook resellers, DRM, software and hardware
companies to communicate directly with librarians to better
appreciate the opportunities and challenges of service for libraries
and their patrons.
Librarians are beginning to respond to posts on the list
and we are hopeful that
authors, vendors and librarians can be brought together.
Meanwhile, Mind Like Water continues to promote its
library catalog through
Internet marketing and search engine optimization efforts.
I am happy to say that I just checked Google for the keyword
phrase "ebook catalog" and we are ranked number 3 and 4 -- right below netLibrary and Microsoft. Not
For those authors who have signed up, your small
investment is paying off in
targeted traffic coming to your site or your publisher's
For more information and to get your ebooks in our
catalog, visit https://www.mind-like-water.com/library_offer.html
or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
More next month,
eBook Author Profile: Patricia Crossley
Patricia Crossley is a multi-published author who lives with her own
romance hero in Victoria on Canada's Pacific Coast. An educator
and transplanted Brit, she has lived and worked in six different
countries. Patricia and her husband recently spent six months
working in rural Kenya and plan to return later in 2003. With
a foot on both sides of the Atlantic, Patricia feels she can draw
what she needs from either well of information. In nearly all
the places she has lived she has been a "stranger" either by birth or language. This creates a new mindset
and way of observing life. It
gives her a wealth of experience to draw on, enriching
her own life as well as her writing.
All of Patricia's books are about two lovers
"finding" each other:
across time, after betrayal, through history. Love allows them
to triumph over past mistakes and open their hearts and minds.
There is nothing as emotionally satisfying as a story of two
people making room in their lives for a committed, loving relationship
against all the odds.
Visit Patricia's web site for excerpts and reviews at http://www.patriciacrossley.com.
Title: DANCING WITH THE DEVIL
genre: Romance: romantic suspense
In this romantic suspense novel, Jazz Hargrove has a brilliant career
as a globe trotting news reporter. She believes the secrets
in her past are well hidden, until she's called home for her
father's funeral. Together with a man she does not wish to trust,
she must face her worst fears to save a child drawn into the
web of danger. An EPPIE awards finalist for 2003. "Dancing With
the Devil word-weaves suspense and romance into an intricate tapestry
of terror and desire...a three-dimensional tale of love, conflict
and blood-chilling suspense. Highly recommended."
Four and a half daggers: Howard Hopkins for "All
ISBN: 1-931761-50-7 (electronic)
Title: BELOVED STRANGER
genre: Romance: paranormal romance
An old house in the Ontario woods, a mysterious stranger who seems
eerily familiar, an ancient murder that must be solved in this
paranormal romance novel....
Disappointed and disillusioned, Sarah gives her life new
direction, renovating an old house, intending
to build a new business and
make a home for her brother. When she rents a cabin in
the woods to Pierre, a business man from Toronto, she finds herself
overwhelmed by the immediate and sizzling sexual tension that
leaps between them. In addition, mysterious forces gather strength,
bringing nightmares of cold and death. What messages is the
past sending her? Why does Pierre seem to be connected with her dreams?
ISBN: 1-59105-023-3 (electronic)
Title: JOURNEY'S END
genre: Romance: time travel romance -- Tudor England
A time-travel romance novel with a difference....
As she makes ready to leave London at the end of the
twentieth century in order to fulfill her dream of practicing medicine in the
third world, Dr. Kari Lunne and her dog are catapulted four hundred
years into the past....
Can a doctor from the twentieth century find love and
happiness with a maverick
historian from the future when they meet in Tudor England?
"Four Stars!... Romantic Times Magazine
ISBN 1-58608-166-7 (electronic)
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