Online Business Rebooted

Hi – remember me? 

I started this blog in April 2008  on blogspot-  it moved to WordPress and this url in November 2008. I’d had the odd month-long break over the years but the 3 months  since I last posted here is a  personal record, and not in a good way! 

Well to be honest I never intended to blog in November as I was away in Burma for the entire month, and I was a bit busy before I went away – but the whole of December and half of January is a bit unacceptable. 

So, to all of you, and particularly those who got in contact to say variations of  “are you dead/got a job/decided to start a pyramid scheme” – sorry. 

I’m still working out the future for this site – but it does have a future – don’t worry!  I feel like I’m straddling two worlds at the moment: 

  • SEO 
  • writing 

Which is not to say I’m an expert in either: but I think I probably better in both than most i.e. I write better than the average SEO and I know more SEO than the average author. 

There may be a niche between the two – I’m going to find out. 

Cultural Highlights of Myanmar
Cultural Highlights of Myanmar

What Have I Been Doing 


I still struggle with writing, there is still far too much time-wasting. But I did get the third book out for my Non-Boring Travel Guides  series live before I went to Myanmar. It’s  not selling well  yet, but to be fair I’ve done little promotion, except for a few free days recently, which has given me a few sales. 

I also put together a picture book of some of my best Myanmar photos – to encourage people to signup for my mailing list on – pictures don’t look so good in black and white – so  I went with pdf for this one. 

I have a number of 1/2 finished projects including how-to guides for travel in Myanmar (parts of which will be posted on ) and a travel memoir from an earlier trip around Australia. I’m starting to get quite angry at how the success of Eat, Pray, Love now means that no trad published travel book  has much  travel content on the places visited, rather just a little window-dressing before we get to the internal angst, and insecurities of the author/friend/partner/dog  plus their love-life (or lack thereof).  I’d like to put the travel back in Travel Memoir … 


I’m getting a consistent stream of formatting jobs, from a mix of people I know and people who found me either from my formatting book or via random searches they’ve found this site. 

The biggest change in the last year or so is – that, finally, as of 31 December, Smashwords is accepted ePubs direct, so you no longer have to go via the awful Word formatting step. I’m still playing with this – so I will be writing more about it shortly. 

I’m also beginning to wonder about the continuum of eBooks to web apps. I don’t actually see much difference, apart from the technology, and I see a way to get more mileage from my content. As Windows 8 rolls out I see apps stopping being just a toy for iPad users, and  are on the way to  becoming  mainstream. EBook formats aren’t great for a lot of travel content, better than paper, but not great, it could be that the app space is where I should be. Anyone doing this already? 


Yup I’m still making less money than this time last year, and lot’s less than the previous year, but onwards and upwards.  I’m not about to get a JOB or anything defeatist like that, and frankly, I’m enjoying doing more client work. It’s good to hear about other people’s ways of working and ideas, and I have a several of my own. 

Frankly when I started on-line I really didn’t see why anyone would ever buy anything that I created. I’ve changed my ideas on that, the more I look at what’s available in the travel niche, the more I think I can add value! Plus, and this is a surprise, my Kindle Formatting guide sells steadily, predominantly by world-of-mouth, so  I will be considering writing some more books that help out the technically terrified author. 

And This Blog?

I made my “reputation” here for calling it as I saw it and bad language and grammar. I’m working on the grammar and the proof-reading – the rest of it probably won’t change much. I know the “A-listers” still say you shouldn’t rock the boat – and I still disagree. There are plenty of scams in publishing, just as in Internet Marketing. Buyer beware – but I’m happy to help 🙂 

I see a niche of where writers meet marketers ,  I’ve seen absolutely awful books do well because they are well promoted, and I’ve seen great books die because no one can find them. I’d like to get the two sides talking to each other. 

I’ve seen plenty of people start blogs talking about their often multi-year journey to publish (self or trad) a fiction book. This is my journey to publish and make money from a range of non-fiction books. 

Plus I’m not American – so there are some quirks about doing the ebook thing – starting with getting an ITIN (coming soon). 

So yes I will be posting more often,  stick around 2013 is going to be an awesome year, both for me and for anyone else who is willing to put the work in to being a successful entrepreneur online (that’s shorthand for a writer who markets, or a marketer who who writes). 

17 replies on “ Rebooted”

Still posting a lot more frequently than me Lis 😉

Good to have you back, seems everyone else has basically gone that used to blog around these here parts!

That was one of the reasons I decided to keep on going with it Dave – my broken link checker tells a sad story of dead blogs!

Hi Lis,
I don’t remember when I published the last decent blog post on my site 😉 I am still fascinated with SEO, just moving further and further from the IM main stream and a bit tired to either preach to the choir or to those that just listen and do nothing. Time to move on I guess 😉

Yeah I still like writing the blog – well the idea of it anyway – and I have heaps of stuff to write about – it’s just getting my butt in gear!

Interesting Debi- I notice that they are only doing iPad and iPhone not Andriod or Win8 – I think that’s one of the opportunities …

Hi Lis, nice to see you posting again!

Did you know that this post isn’t visible on the main page of your site? I only stumbled over it via your comment on Ruth’s vlog! Might need to shake up your homepage categories a bit 🙂

Hi Lis!

I’ve not checked in here for a long time now. I’ve not been blogging much myself either. I don’t get to travel much anymore (money and new commitments like being married), and for someone running a travel blog, that’s not the best strategy unfortunately, so I know what you may be thinking right now, in not living up to what you feel you should do. But everyone needs a break occasionally.

Here’s to 2013, cheers!

Actually I find running a travel blog MUCH easier when I’m not travelling! I tend to blog in spurts on the travel sites anyway, rarely consistently

Hi Lis,

Was wondering what happened to you. Didn’t realise you had spent some time in Burma, hence you being quiet here on the blog. Im in the midst of writing my first ever eBook, so I may have to send it to you across the ditch for proper Kindle formatting as I not liking the aspect of doing that myself.

Cheers and looking forward to your posts for 2013.

Jason aka Kangaroojase

Cool I’ve done a bit of work for Aussies – the Interwebs seem to work Trans-Tasman! Get that book finished!

Hey Lis,

I was glad to get your email and see that you’re going to jump back in. And thanks again for inviting me into your Google+ circle on publishing. I like that you are about publishing now – whether on site or in a book. I do think it’s the future. Eventually, G won’t even count links, it will be all about content and relevance.



I got your newsletter and I emailed you on Google Plus. But I understand now as I came across this site while searching for a way around those darn keywords. That may not be a correct sentence, but I contacted you a month ago after reading one of your posts at Squidoo. I thought there was something so candid and almost alarming about your response. Now a month later, I’m looking for you daily to pop up on the internet. I have never heard so many scam pitches until I started this blog. Enough of that.

So, are you helping people write books or just publishing them? I hadn’t thought of an ebook until last week when I read something–I don’t remember. It wasn’t very good. But reading is a hobby and I’m determined to make this writing thing work. If you don’t want to coach others in writing an ebook(possibly a good niche-lol), point me in the right direction. I’ve got the determination and skill. I just don’t know what I’m doing. I want to write a nonfiction ebook. I’m tired of chasing these keywords after just a month of blogging. It kills the writing art/skill.

Hi Jennifer- I saw your message and then it disappeared and I couldn’t find it again – weird! And it’s definitely not me on Squidoo – but it might have been Hubpages,

I’m not really alarming – well only if you are trying to sell a Get Rich Quick Scheme 🙂 The thing is what does a book coach do? I’m not sure to be honest, but first I think you need to write a book. If you have keywords then that’s a good start- find a group that are related and make them between 3 and 7 chapter headings. Then answer the questions the keywords pose. Put an Introduction at the start which summarises why you wrote the book ie what the reader will learn from the book, and a conclusion summarising what you said and an advert for your next book or your website.

I guess I could charge people for that advice – but there are already a gazillion books on “how to write a non-fiction book” – which basically come down to the above paragraph. There is however no secret, really. Once the book is written, then leave for a few weeeks, re-read and edit, and then find an editor and pay for a second set of eyes.

Once you have a book then it’s about whether you do print or ebook, though I can’t see any reason why not to do both, and formatting, cover, blurb, and promotion. But focus on the book first

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