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My story is a prime example of that old adage, “There’s more than one way to skin a cat.” Although I never really got the essence of that quote, it seems appropriate in my case.
Today, I’m a ghostwriter, which means I work behind the curtain with clients wanting to produce high quality written works they can’t do on their own, either for a lack of skill or time.
The majority of would-be authors I’ve met have one big goal in mind – capturing the elusive merit badge of “best selling author.” I’ll have to admit it, when I authored my first book, I had that same sparkle in my eye. Then reality set in.
Over 95% of the books written each year never earn a profit,
much less be in contention for best-seller status.
The Beginning, My First Career
Having said that, I’d like to rewind the clock back a number of decades while I was in the middle stages of my first career in Information Technology.
After I had earned my stripes as an IT professional, I found myself in the rather enviable position of IT Director of a major corporation. That sounds good, but it was not my cup of tea. The bureaucratic life of a corporate executive was draining away the creative juices that had made me successful in my climb up the corporate ladder.
Shifting gears and moving into the consulting arena seemed to be the perfect solution for me. During my career thus far, I had developed a unique skill of being able to close the communication gap that existed between IT workers and company executives. My first consulting gig involved the corporate turnaround of a medium size manufacturing firm.
………Don’t worry, we’ll get back to the writing part soon, I promise.
One Saturday morning, the CEO came into my office for a chat. “You have a rare talent,” he started, “I’ve never met anyone who can straddle both sides of the fence like you can.” Before I could thank him for the compliment, he continued, “You’re obviously an IT expert and are adept at speaking the IT lingo. Yet at the same time, you speak to us non-technical executives in terms we can comprehend, and you seem to have a solid grip on business operations and financial statements. For the first time, I really understand what’s going on in my own IT department. You get around all the techie mumbo-jumbo and tell it like it is.”
I thanked him for his supportive comments, and then added, “Actually, it’s not that tough. I simply took more courses in business subjects than in computer science and struck a balance between the two. After that, it’s simply putting profitability as the highest priority.”
On his way out the door, he turned and gave me some food for thought. “Ya know, you should really write a book about your approach. I’ll bet there are a ton of business executives who’d love to read it.” I started on the book that very weekend.
I was able to finish “Those Idiots in the Computer Room” in less than two months. All the material was already in my head and I didn’t have to do any research. I’d heard many executives and other business managers refer to their IT employees as ‘idiots’ out of frustration over the serious communication gap. Sounds like a catchy title to me.
Stealth Marketing Can Work
I self-published the book but had no idea how to market it to get widespread distribution. Needless to say, it never came close to the best seller list, nor did it even turn a profit as a book. I ended up giving over 2,000 books away for free as a marketing strategy.
I met with organizers of many business meetings and conferences and told them I wanted to establish myself as a business book author. I offered to give them books for free to be used as door prizes or gifts for attending their events. In my business travels, I also left many copies in book racks in airport business lounges and at business conferences and such.
While I never made a dime on book profits, I pulled in huge consulting revenue as a result of the book. It solidified my career as a successful IT and business consultant. I kept track of how many clients I got as a direct result of the book. Over the next several years, that revenue was about $1 million. Not bad for a relatively small investment.
Your takeaway is this:
In today’s digital economy, self-publishing a book is fairly easy and surprisingly inexpensive. Anyone with a successful experience or two and a solid story to support it can write a small book to further their career and expand their income potential.
About the Author
Dick Kuiper has been doing freelance writing, ghostwriting and copy-editing for several decades and has clients across North America and beyond. He has written hundreds of articles, blog posts, marketing collateral pieces and a great deal more. He has written over ten books both as an author and as a ghostwriter. In 2018, he authored a book called “Success Is Yours for the Taking” (Amazon $7.95) explaining the various tips and techniques that have led to his success. Visit his website at www.ghostwriterhelp.com or call (360) 670-2914 for more information.
$7.95 + S&H
Success Is Yours for the Taking is a combination memoir and "How to Succeed" Manual
In the book, I relate the many success stories
- and a few failures -
I had during my whirlwind corporate career and entrepreneurial ventures. Each story is accompanied with a Lessons Learned" synopsis.
Clicking on the button to the left is not a commitment to buy, but will take you to my Amazon book page where you can read more about the book and use the "See Inside" feature to view the first 25 or so pages.
Watch as "Mr. Ghostwriter" walks you through his various service offerings
"Kuiper understands that producing quality content is a key component of any businesses marketing and communication strategy. I have referred Dick to several close clients and they have come back with rave reviews of Dick's professionalism, performance and results. If you need any business writing done, you should let Dick put his proficient pen to your use."
- David Kline, Sales Manager, Oregonian Media Group ghostwriter copy editing memoir
"I hired Dick to help me on a couple of projects and am completely delighted with the outcome. I feel more confident that I am portraying exactly what I want my clients to see."
- Nina Cammann, Customer Appreciation Manager, Direct Cellars Wine Club
"Dick Kuiper is a walking encyclopedia! His experience as a ghostwriter is just one of his many talents. Not only is he skilled at promoting and marketing with written works, he is generous in sharing his knowledge about marketing and business.
- Melissa Taka Kershner, Gateway Mortgage
"Mr. Kuiper's attention to detail and amazing listening skills really show up in his work. I retained Mr. Kuiper to write a professional bio for me and when he delivered the finished product I was blown away. He takes his time and very patient throughout the process. I highly recommend Mr. Kuiper! Thank you for what you do!
- Kareen Mills, Business Development Expert
" It pleases me to count Dick Kuiper as a trusted business associate. He is not only a powerful writer, but also an incredibly talented expert on techniques for attracting new customers for businesses of all kinds. The articulate writing he does for me and the help he gives me on creative ways to generate more business income are equally impressive. I can honestly recommend Dick to anyone seeking to increase their visibility in the marketplace.
- Daniel Waite, Sales Manager, TekCollect
"Dick is a top-notch writer. His written material is a game-changer for business owners! I recently read a short, humorous piece that Dick wrote, which was very insightful and clever but on top of that, I'm still chuckling 2 weeks later. Excellent writing. In addition to his great writing skills, he's a great colleague and makes a solid business partner. I'm proud to know Dick.
- Cindy Eastman, Director, Small Business Division, LegalShield
Growth Management Group - Portland, OR
KING TV Channel 5 - Seattle, WA
Demand Driven Institute – Seattle, WA
Creative Copywriters – London, England
Gerson Lehrman Group – New York, NY
Natural Intelligence – Tel Aviv, Israel
LegalShield, Many locations across the U.S.
Shanghai Veritrade Sourcing -Shanghai, China
Teccelerators, Inc. – Denver, CO
Wilbur Resources, Inc. – Portland, OR
TIGERS Success Series – Bend, OR
SalesOpsAnalytics – Boston, MA
Network With Results, Inc. – Portland, OR
PINT Magazine – Los Angeles, CA
America CNG – Dallas, TX
Get Healthy With Joel – Portland, OR
Printing Expressly For You – Vancouver, WA
ServPro – Portland, OR
The Renaissance Foundation – Portland, OR
ReciProty, Inc. – Portland, OR
Gartner Group – Stamford, CT
Young Essentials Oils – Portland, OR
PINT Magazine – Los Angeles, CA
Above The Rest Marketing (AT&T) – Seattle, WA
MultiPure Water Systems – Portland, OR
Capital Digital Media – Dallas, TX
Abbott & Associates – Vancouver, WA
Capron Publishing, Portland, OR
Wedding Network USA – Portland, OR
Lawson Software – Minneapolis, MN
Forefront Magazine – Chicago, IL
Orexigen Therapeutics, San Diego, CA
SNAP Business Resources – Vancouver, WA
Intelligent Manufacturing Newsletter - Gaithersburg, MD
Interactive Information Services – San Francisco, CA
Oregon Construction Contractors Board – Salem, OR
Council of Logistics Management – Chicago, IL
American Institute of CPAs – Seattle, WA
Health Industry Distributors Association – Alexandria, VA
Carling Communications – San Diego, CA
Meridian Partners – Boston, MA
AdaQuest – Seattle, WA
Coldwell Banker – Portland, OR
Clean & Bright Enterprises – Vancouver, WA
Home Instead Senior Care – Vancouver, WA
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services – Vancouver, WA
Whitman-Hart – Chicago, IL
Penton Media – New York, NY
American Production and Inventory Control Society – Chicago, IL
Microsoft’s START Magazine – Redmond, WA
Manufacturing Systems Magazine – Chicago, IL
Propel Media – Jersey City, NJ
Cincom Systems - Cincinnati, OH
SoftWorld Conference – Philadelphia, PA
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