Showing posts with label Business. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Business. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

4 Best Self-Publishing Companies


4 Best Self-Publishing Companies

If you are like me, then as an author, you want to find the best self-publishing companies.

Don’t worry, some are out there.

I have been self-publishing paperbacks and eBooks since 2010. Let’s just say, there was a huge learning curve and I am still learning.

The internet is a vast ocean that seems to be expanding every day. Not to mention, there are some unscrupulous agents out there that are just waiting to rob you of your money.

Where to Self Publish Books

First, you don’t have to pay to self-publish your book.

You do have to pay to ship copies to yourself, at a reduced cost. The best self-publishing companies allow you to publish for free.

  • To access expanded distribution, free.
  • To design your own book cover, free.
  • To upload your manuscript and convert it to any format, free.

1. Lulu.com

This is easily accessible and my first self-publishing website,

Unlike Amazon, Lulu allows you to order proof copies before the book is approved for distribution to other third-party bookstores and catalogs. The distribution option is a prime example of the good service that the best self-publishing companies offer.

The disadvantage is that you must order the copy before you get distribution.

Another advantage, of these self-publishing companies, is that you can decide where your earnings go before a book is sold and you don’t have to wait for a particular limit; Lulu.com offers this.

My option is PayPal and I love being surprised when I get an email advising me of the transfer of funds.

2. Amazon Kindle

That brings me to why I jumped over to the Amazon Kindle Publishing self-publishing website.

Here you will find no delay in getting your self-published eBook to market.

Amazon Kindle’s process is user-friendly and simple. If you are looking for a lot of frills, don’t look here. What I like though, is that I can edit my details, book cover or the inside of the book with no hassle.

Unlike Lulu.com, this portal has an immediate upload to Amazon’s bookstore.

In terms of payment, the limit is different and I am yet to figure out how to get PayPal payments or credit card payments and not check payments which are highly likely to take months in the mail; if they reach at all.

3. Amazon Createspace

I also use Amazon Createspace.

This process is different from both Lulu.com and Kindle Publishing.

Your self-published book must go through an approval process before it goes live on the Amazon bookstore. Whereas Kindle is for the self-publishing of eBooks, Createspace allows you to self-publish paperbacks for the Amazon bookstore.

I dislike the payment options associated with Amazon Createspace, you must reach a threshold of $100 in either the US, UK or CAD currencies. Nothing is mixed. 

Suh dag nyam yuh supper if each fills up likkle likkle.’

4. Smashwords

Smashwords sucked my self-publishing paperback and eBook mojo.

They are tedious and have a discouraging process. I have never been frustrated so much in my life unless you count my beginner's days in learning programming code C or C++.

This website is recommended for the patient and tech-savvy.

The best thing about the Smashwords self-publishing website is its distribution stream; this goes to quite a few other online bookstores.

As you can see I mainly self publish through:

  1. Kindle self-publishing website
  2. Lulu.com self-publishing website
  3. Createspace self-publishing website
  4. Smashwords self-publishing website

My books can be found at a number of online websites, including Smashwords, Barnes and Noble, Lulu.com, and Amazon.

*****

Check out her book How to Keep Writing

This book shares key practical strategies on how to become an author and a working writer. It helps you to get over the everyday nuisances that hinder the writing process. You can follow each strategy, at your own pace until you are writing often. It is geared towards both aspiring fiction and nonfiction authors and working writers who produce content, on a daily basis.

Available at all online book retailers and Amazon.com.

 

Follow her on:

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Copyright © 2021, Denise N. Fyffe



Tuesday, June 1, 2021

How To Plan For the Future Financially


In a world where the price of nothing decreases, and you sometimes find yourselves in difficult positions and struggle to get through the month with one paycheck, it is, unfortunately, a reality for many individuals.

Planning finances and managing funds effectively can help with these types of problems.

How To Plan For the Future Financially

If the management of funds isn’t the issue, maybe obtain a second source of income to secure your lifestyle and assure you never lose what you need the most – like your property or vehicles or anything contributing to your needs.

Have a look at some alternatives for when finances are tight and how we can manage it better. 

Finances and planning 

Without a doubt, anyone should be able to fairly and accurately predict your future expenses as well as income. This should be done every three months and should be checked monthly to ensure that your predictions are correct.

Some areas of your budget might need some fine-tuning at first, so ensure you keep your slips and calculate what you spend on a monthly basis. This should include groceries, electricity, fuel, and everything you pay monthly. Unexpected expenses will arise, so don’t be afraid of them – just plan for them!

Make sure you save some money, preferably in an alternative account, for when disaster strikes. This will be covered by your unencumbered cash and won’t affect your budget. This isn’t the only thing you need to save for – maybe open an investment that can hold money for your retirement if your employer hasn’t already done this. Treat these savings payments as an expense and not an option because you will need them. 

Find a Second income 

If the above is just not possible, as in many cases all over the world, you need to start with finding a second income.

It can be anything from a second job to starting something of your own. Also, a useful way of obtaining a second income is by Trading Forex, which refers to the buying, selling, and exchanging of foreign currencies at a specific rate. Some investors regularly get returns of more than 10% of their initial investment.

This can go a long way, especially if your Forex Trading income is solely used for saving, and only using it once you’re no longer able to work for a salary. You might think that it’s too little too late, but in a few years with knowledgeable trading, a small amount could accumulate to become a hefty payout.

Practice self-discipline 

So in many cases, individuals start saving until the savings amount becomes slightly higher than they’re normally used to. At any cost, don’t use your retirement savings for any other purpose other than retirement.

Everyone believes they’re still young, and they will start saving for this later in life, but unfortunately, it doesn’t always pan out this way.

Many individuals realize too late in life that all the work they’ve done now suddenly doesn’t mean much. Not having savings to back you up, and, in some instances where there is no one to support you, you will not get very far, and the peaceful world you desired comes tumbling down on you. 

Preparing for our old age is of the utmost importance as this is what most of us work for our entire life. Not having anything to fall back on should not be an option for anyone. So, always save and discipline yourself with your savings, as it could maybe save you a lot of trouble one day. 

*****

Poetess Denise N. Fyffe is a published author of over 30 books and a publisher for Jamaica Pen Publishers.

She is a freelance writer for online publications such as Revealing the Christian LifeJamaica Rose, Entertainment Trail, My Trending Stories among others.

Check out her book How to Keep Writing

This book shares key practical strategies on how to become an author and a working writer. It helps you to get over the everyday nuisances that hinder the writing process. You can follow each strategy, at your own pace until you are writing frequently. It is geared towards both aspiring fiction and nonfiction authors and working writers who produce content, on a daily basis.

Available at all online book retailers and Amazon.com.

 

 

 

 

Follow her on: 

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Copyright © 2021, Denise N. Fyffe

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Did You Know You Might Be Overpaying For Your Instacart Order?



Have you checked the paper receipt collected by your shopper and compared it to the online receipt sent by Instacart? I did, when I finally got a receipt and I was annoyed.

I started to wonder about all those other receipts I never received from my shoppers and how much I was possibly overcharged.

Did you know that you might be overpaying for your Instacart order? 

When I compared the receipt I found in my grocery bag to my online receipt, I was shocked because I realized that there was an overcharge of $22.74, on Instacart. I did not like overpaying for my Instacart order; especially during the pandemic when we are all watching every dime.

My local Giant store offered me savings on my groceries, of over $5, which were not passed on to me. Plus 90 flexible points.

Additionally, I had to pay other fees to Instacart, including:

  • Delivery Fee - $3.99
  • Sales Tax  - $1.38
  • Service Fee - $7.97

I also tipped by shopper over $10. So, it makes me think, who gets these points and card savings.

I decided to send a report to Instacart that I was overpaying for your Instacart order. They responded in under 2 hours.

When I contacted Instacart, they advised in their response that:

"I do understand you concern about the difference you see between the Instacart digital receipt and the retailer’s paper receipt.

Retailers set the prices of items available for delivery on the Instacart platform. Whenever possible, retailers aim to offer the same prices as in stores, but retailers consider many factors when setting prices on Instacart. Further, the paper receipt doesn’t accurately show what you were charged on your order, which includes factors such as the delivery fee, tip, or adjustments made to your order."

How does the paper receipt not accurately show what I am charged? 

Would it not be an issue between the Giant store and Instacart? 

Are consumers being saddled with whatever fees Giant should be paying to Instacart for using their platform? 

Instacart's second response stated:

"Thanks for asking about our pricing policies.

We work with retailers to bring you the same prices that are in the store, but it’s ultimately up to the retailer to set their Instacart prices. That’s why some retailers are more expensive on Instacart.

We don’t honor in-store discounts, but we do offer hundreds of exclusive coupons." 

Does this still not mean that someone is benefitting from the $22.74 that I was overcharged?

How do I make sense of the discrepancies on Instacart?

When my shopper used the Instacart credit card for my goods totaling $91.07 on a paper receipt, but actually showing me $113.81 online; should the savings not be passed down to the customer?

Also, I directly see the adjustments, which I approve in real-time, on both Instacart's online portal and the paper receipt. I take care to track my orders in real-time on Instacart because my first Instacart shopper chose more expensive items and jacked up the cost and tip. Another shopper, purposely left off items, which I knew to be in the store because he did not want to shop those items.

Instacart vs. Amazon Prime

Instacart is an American company that operates a grocery delivery and pick-up service in the United States and Canada. 

Now, I have recently started to shop with Instacart, instead of Amazon Prime / Fresh, because of how quickly my order should be delivered. Instacart promises to deliver within one or two hours, but I waited over 3 hours.

My shopper was great; however, Instacart's policies are highly suspect in this matter.

With Amazon Prime, at least my orders are charged based on what I see directly on the website. Also, some prices are cheaper. For example, a case of Deerpark water was $1, less than what was stated on Instacart - Giant store portal.

Furthermore, my Amazon Prime fee is tied with Movies, TV, Music, Alexa, Kindle books, and other benefits, so my delivery is free over $35. 

Unlike with Instacart, where I have to pay $3.99 even though I purchased over $100.

Hiking of Prices by Delivery Services

Because of the global Covid-19 pandemic, many people are opting to stay home and use online delivery services to buy their groceries and shop for food. However, over the last six months, I have noticed a significant increase in fees by those such as Doordash.

It now costs twice the amount for the meal to order with Doordash.

I am not the only one noticing this trend, millions of people have too and legislatures in some States are even passing laws to mitigate this; but it is not working.

We can understand that these are businesses that need to turn a profit. However, it makes you think how much of a profit they are making when you look at owners and CEOs like Jeff Bezos earning in the billions of dollars and becoming the richest men in the world.

The Decision

I decided that I won't use Instacart again; canceling my account. 

Also, I have significantly cut down my Doordash orders and will only use delivery services if absolutely necessary. My Amazon orders are down by 100% each month.

For the sake of transparency, in every transaction, I will take the risk of going out and purchasing my own groceries. At least, my local Giant store will pass on the savings and gas benefits directly to me.

*****

Check out her book How to Keep Writing

This book shares key practical strategies on how to become an author and a working writer. It helps you to get over the everyday nuisances that hinder the writing process. You can follow each strategy, at your own pace until you are writing often. It is geared towards both aspiring fiction and nonfiction authors and working writers who produce content, on a daily basis.

Available at all online book retailers and Amazon.com.







Copyright © 2021, Denise N. Fyffe

Saturday, May 29, 2021

How To Get Your Side Hustle Started With Some Helpful Beginner’s Advice



It seems like everyone needs a side hustle these days if they want to stay afloat. Whether you’re struggling to make ends meet with your lowered paycheck or if you’re bouncing between jobs due to the pandemic, there are many reasons to get out there and start looking for more income.

But where do you get started?

Even if you wanted to work two jobs, it’s unlikely that anyone is hiring due to the circumstances in the world now.

In fact, many people have lost their jobs due to the pandemic and are struggling to find any kind of employment regardless of their qualifications or what’s available locally. Thankfully, there are solutions available to us, especially if we make use of the internet.

How To Get Your Side Hustle Started With Some Helpful Beginner’s Advice

Enter the side hustle; a brilliant way to build up extra income as you work and to potentially start a fully-fledged business. If you’ve got an entrepreneurial spirit or are interested in building up your own business to secure your financial situation, then here’s some helpful advice to get you started.

Take advantage of any opportunity to build up your credentials and experience

You should try to take advantage of any opportunity that is given to you. For example, if you’re planning on making use of your existing experience as a driver, then you may want to have a side hustle doing deliveries on platforms such as Uber and Lyft. Additionally, there are opportunities open to you if you have more experience with specialist driving services. For example, if you’ve driven a large vehicle or even own a van, then you may be eligible to take up jobs on platforms such as https://www.shiply.com/us/load-board. These are excellent opportunities to help you build a bit of extra income and also gain experience. It can pay well and it’s a great way to network and find new jobs in the future.

Use the internet to find remote working opportunities

There are lots of ways to use the internet to find work, such as becoming a mystery shopper or working for a content creation agency that hires internationally. There are lots of opportunities, but many of these businesses simply don’t have the reach to market their services and employment positions. As such, looking at a job board isn’t the way to go. Instead, you’ll want to try and search for positions by looking at company websites themselves. Most companies usually have a careers page that is filled with useful information and might even be recruiting despite not posting on job listing websites.

Turn your skills into a freelance gig

If you have lots of marketable skills then you may want to consider a freelance gig. For example, you could try and use your design skills to become a freelance designer, or you can even use your knowledge of networking systems to become a remote consultant for small companies around the world. There are lots of different ways to convert your existing knowledge and skills into something that works in a freelance business model.

*****

Check out her book How to Keep Writing

This book shares key practical strategies on how to become an author and a working writer. It helps you to get over the everyday nuisances that hinder the writing process. You can follow each strategy, at your own pace until you are writing frequently. It is geared towards both aspiring fiction and nonfiction authors and working writers who produce content, on a daily basis.

Available at all online book retailers and Amazon.com.

 

 

Follow her on: 

social-media2

Copyright © 2021, Denise N. Fyffe

Monday, May 24, 2021

Living the Multi-Potential Life: Why Some of Us Don’t Have One True Calling

I have always had many interests – knowledge, skills, and abilities.

Teaching, training, counseling, writing, designing, traveling, conceptualizing/ideator, serving, and meeting the needs of others.

I get bored easily and often move from one creative interest to the other, as needed.

Living the Multi-Potential Life

The thing is, many of the interests that I have gives me great joy; especially when it comes to publishing, training, writing, counseling, and community involvement.

If I am designing a magazine, banner, or book cover – it’s like the purest rain of peace is flowing within me.

When I am crafting an article, the words spirit from my fingertips like baby Usain Bolts.

When I am giving back, through feeding, clothing, etc, initiatives it feels like the purest of heavenly sensations.

So, why should I settle? Why should I give up these experiences and focus on only one pursuit in life for anyone?

The Struggles of Living the Multi-Potential Life

The downside is, I live in a world that tries to pigeonhole me and put me in a box. Worse yet, those who identify the potentials, seem to always want to take advantage of it.

Can you identify with this kind of life?

Recently, I came across a TED Talk by Emilie Wapnick. She too shared this dilemma and her Talk, truly resonated with me. She encourages people like her to embrace their skills. For others to embrace and have people with multipotential in their groups because they bring a wealth of knowledge and skills to the table and can work adeptly to solve complex problems.

Why do I have to shape my life to a box that everyone else tries to put me in?

Why do you?

Well, no more. Let’s venture to create our own reality. People with multiple potential are like rare treasures, which should be allowed to flourish and contribute to the wider society without being penalized by others – especially employers.

Employers and recruiters often look at the resumes of people with multiple potential and think they are less valuable and cannot contribute. Truly, this couldn’t be any farther from the truth.

Having someone with multi-potential working at your company, allows you to tap into a bottomless reserve of knowledge, skills, and abilities. They will always have fresh ideas when you are posed with unique problems.

I have had managers who always say to me, “Where do you always get these ideas?”

I love problem-solving. I love a challenge.

If you are struggling with being a multi-potentialite. Then STOP struggling and embrace the many gifts and abilities, which you were born with.

Know that you naturally have three top skills:

  1. Idea Synthesis
  2. Rapid Learning
  3. Adaptability

If you love working with people, leading teams, solving budget accounts issues, meeting people’s needs, and building beautiful structures – you are well on your way to having the necessary skills of running your own construction, architecture or landscaping business.

Be positive.

Identify your skills.

List your dreams.

Write down your life goals.

Take the first step.

Love yourself and live the life that you want.

Follow your curiosity down the rabbit holes! Live a more authentic life by being true to yourself.

*****

About the writer:
Poetess Denise N. Fyffe is a published author of over 30 books, for more than ten years and enjoys Training and Counseling. She is a freelance writer for online publications such as Revealing the Christian Life, Jamaica Rose, Entertainment Trail, My Trending Stories among others.

Check out her book The Expert Teacher’s Guide on How to Motivate


This handbook highlights the most efficient teaching techniques to motivate students. The Expert Teacher’s Guide on How to Motivate Students initially examines who is an expert teacher and how to become one. Then it will delve into how to get students to learn any subject by implementing effective motivation strategies.

Available at all online book retailers and Amazon.com.


Follow her on: 

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Copyright © 2021, Denise N. Fyffe

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