What’s Your Story? Make it Count!

What’s Your Story? Make it Count!

Today I want to shift gears and share an exercise to help you share your story in a new, authentic and congruent way.

Last weekend at the Legacy Leaders retreat I helped lead with Laura Gisborne at her beautiful palace in Sedona, AZ we all took 15 minutes to write “our story”. That is 15 minutes max to tell your life story, with the twist that you do so in an entirely new way.

The purpose of this is to break free from the looping and autopilot we all too easily run on and focus on telling your story the way that it is most real and true for you right now.

So, here is “My Story” told in an entirely different way than I’ve ever shared it before and I encourage you to comment and share your new story and/or how this exercise was for you!

My Story – Circa August 28 in Sedona, AZ

I fell in love with music and electric guitar from age 13. I played this forward to starting a record label at age 21 and touring America twice by age 23.

This showed me the creative side of business and I became a consultant, investment banker and eventually entrepreneur and CEO at age 27.

Simultaneously my love of traveling, learning languages & cultures and exploring relationships from many perspectives has provided myriad experiences that far exceed those which someone of a more traditional life path experiences.

By being comfortable, or willing, or thriving in uncertainty and seeming chaos, I have developed a large capacity to hold space for others and this has become huge for my work with authors.

Now, at age 34 I am confident in my career path and do work I love with people I admire. Others look to me for leadership and I always o my best to rise to the challenge.

My priorities in life have been to collect experiences and relationships, now I see the value in also accumulating assets and growing my capacity to earn as I learn, such that I may become financially free, debt free and ultimately wealthy.

Wealthy in the sense that I am secure in living the lifestyle I enjoy, able to invest in opportunities & experiences that are attractive and be able to support my family, as well as start one of my own.

Most recently I realize that my tendency in life has been to try and bend the world to my will, but that is an arrogant posture with which to approach life.

Now I see the value in releasing my attachment to the outcome, surrendering to the experience at hand, and in so doing being willing to play full out to the best of my abilities, in a spirit of self-love, gratitude, and contribution.

Now it’s your turn…What’s Your Story?

Dream Training by Colin Gilmartin – Book Launch!

Dream Training by Colin Gilmartin – Book Launch!

Happy Launch Day!

It’s always an exciting Tuesday when we’re launching a new book, and today that is twice as true.

Since early on in the publishing process, I knew Dream Training had the potential to be special. Very special. 

Colin Gilmartin, the author transcended difficult circumstances in his own upbringing and had become a nationally-ranked soccer coach. But it wasn’t just his soccer skills that the kids loved.

During soccer practices, Colin would integrate some of the teachings and lessons from such personal development pioneers as Napoleon Hill and Dale Carnegie…and the kids would keep doing better and better.

Which obviously made him look great to their parents!

From the cover design to the content, Dream Training: A Practical Guide for Today’s Youth to Achieve Their Dreams delivers.

Now you can get a FREE copy of Dream Training today only – because that’s what we do for the Lifestyle Entrepreneurs Press community: Hook you up!

Get a Free Copy of Dream Training by Colin Gilmartin <= Today only

By downloading a copy and starting to read Dream Training, you’re helping Colin’s author dreams come true. Please share this with anyone who has children that could use some inspiration.

Colin’s personal mission, which we’re working on now, is to distribute a copy of Dream Training to every inner-city child in New Orleans, and even help them understand how to read and use the book.

To that extent we are talking with sponsors and local businesses in New Orleans to help improve the literacy rate and life outcomes of their at-risk youth.

That is the deeper mission of Dream Training and I hope you’ll support in your own way by grabbing your free copy today

Get a Free Copy of Dream Training by Colin Gilmartin <= Today only

And if you would like to be the next LE Press author, check out: www.LifestyleEntrepreneursPress.com

To your success,



Jesse Krieger

Building a Book Launch – Behind the Scenes View, Part 1

Hey Lifestyle Entrepreneurs,

Hope you’re having a productive, exciting day so far…and if you’re not, why not start now?

I want to share a few behind-the-scenes views into the ever-unfolding Lifestyle Entrepreneur book launch. I say ever-unfolding because, even though the majority of people who will ever see Lifestyle Entrepreneur will see this version that’s coming out now, I think of it as v3.0 of the book that I started writing nearly four years ago in Shanghai.

Lifestyle Entrepreneur Across The Years

Even though the first book was called The Entrepreneurs Guidebook, it did include a number of the core concepts that made it all the way to today’s version (like a Vision-MAP and The Operations Model). Plus that eBook is what got me an introduction to my Asian publishers Kanyin Books.

Working with my editor at Kanyin (Carol Lin) was a huge learning experience, as she got me thinking about eye-catching chapter titles and re-writing parts of the book to include stories from my own business history. The re-writes took about 5-6 months, but it wasn’t just “re-writing” the book as much as it was morphing it from a China-USA trade focused book to a more overarching theme of being a “lifestyle entrepreneur”.

But the effort was worth it, and the partnership with Kanyin was exciting as it unfolded over 4 trips to Malaysia and Singapore, filming the book launch video and ultimately seeing it rise up the charts to #2 business bestseller!

Bringing It Back Home – From Asia to USA

In a sweet twist of irony, the first book that became Lifestyle Entrepreneur was focused on China-USA trade, but by the time the book actually came out in USA the journey was reversed from Asia >> USA.

All along it was my goal to have some success with the Asia book launch and use that to leverage into getting a great publishing deal with a US publisher. And not just any publisher, I had one particular publisher in mind; Morgan James Publishing who had released Brendon Burchard’s book The Millionaire Messenger.

So I showed up at a conference that the Morgan James team puts on called Author 101 University with a stack of books and proceeded to approach, pitch and get a preliminary “thumbs up” from their president, publisher and senior acquisitions editor

Admittedly, it was easier to pitch myself as a potential Morgan James author with a book in-hand that already had a proven sales history. But that was exactly the point of putting in the work beforehand with the Asia launch…to not have it be the first time I’m dealing with publishers when releasing the book in US and beyond.

Signing Two Publishing Deals in Two Years.

My strategy to work with Morgan James was to talk to their main decision makers 1-on-1 and get them excited about Lifestyle Entrepreneur. After talking with them at Author 101, and each of them saying “that seems like just the kind of books we like to publish,” I brought them together and said “Please do!” 🙂

I’ve heard countless stories from authors saying “Oh, I was rejected 23 times in a row by publishers” – but my experience has been really pitching two publishers…and signing two publishing deals.

Why is that?

Well, I’d say for one, in both cases I had a finished book ready-to-go; I had already done the heavy lifting and proved that I was going to bring my message out to the world one way or another. Many of the rejection stories I heard center around submitting book proposals (as, in not a complete manuscript with a sales track record).

Takeaway for Aspiring Authors: If you’re passionate about an idea for a book – WRITE ONE! You don’t need a publishers approval or anyone else’s permission to put pen to paper. These days, you have an outlet for your book through programs like Kindle Direct Publishing, eBooks, selling informational/training books on ClickBank and more. So it’s no longer the case that a publisher is gatekeeper to the distribution channels where readers buy books.

The Benefits of Working With a Publisher vs. Self Publishing

Even though it is entirely possible to self-publish a book nowadays, I still prefer working with a publisher because I enjoy being part of a team. Ultimately, signing with a publisher means joining a roster of authors, some in your genre writing similar things as you, and others in different varied fields. These are all potential allies and friends for book reviews, cross-promotions, and future book projects.

Plus, I like the fact that my publishers take care of just about all the details not directly related to writing and promoting a book. Sure, it’s possible to learn about all the publishing platforms out there, join their service, format your book for each platforms tech specs, and integrate sales stats from a variety of sources – BUT – I’m much happier to spend all that time on getting the word out about my book.

So from that perspective, I enjoy partnering with a publisher, and have no illusion about the fact that publisher or not, the author always has the ultimate responsibility to promote his or her book.

Re-Writing and Editing Lifestyle Entrepreneur for US.

After signing with Morgan James, I decided to re-write and improve Lifestyle Entrepreneur again and get it *just right* for the release I always envisioned back when I started writing my eBook in Shanghai years before.

The main change was shifting it from a semi-autobiographical book, featuring my life and business experiences as the majority of case studies, to looking at “being a lifestyle entrepreneur” as an identity that anyone can assume and make their own.

To that extent, I interviewed seven other inspirational entrepreneurs who have kick-ass lifestyles and 6-or-7 figure businesses that they run amidst extensive international travel.

Then I worked those interviews in throughout the book as features, or “Lifestyle Entrepreneurs In-Focus” as it’s titled in the book. This is to give readers a number of examples of what’s possible and let them self-select which ones resonate most with their goals, dreams and life experience.

Then I included a new Discover Your Identity exercise and framework, and re-wrote the Prologue to be current and representative of the most recent year of travel and business adventures.

With the content up-to-date, I turned my attention to the overall look and feel; The cover design and interior layout.

Crowdsourcing Design Work for Authors

In my experience, the writing of a book is my primary creative contribution. I think a lot of first-time authors shoot themselves in the foot by thinking they have to do everything in the process, including the most important thing – designing the book cover.

I had a vision for how the cover could look – with a crest, sort of like you’d see on a prestigious university, but with images representative of being a lifestyle entrepreneur; an airplane, a globe. So I sketched out a rough image with pencil and paper and launched a contest on 99designs!

You can check out the progression of designs on the completed contest here, and you should be able to click on “design brief” and see the original instructions I gave to the designers.

99designs is great for projects like this where you want to actually see the design ideas of many designers up front, instead of like on Elance where you review bids, award a job and then start to see actual designs. Each has their place, but 99designs is cool because you also have a historical record of progress (*and can share it in blog posts!)

Coming Up in Part 2 

At this point we’ve followed the progress of Lifestyle Entrepreneur from it’s humble beginnings being written on an iPad in coffee shops and skyrises in Shanghai, through to an initial launch in Asia and now being reborn for a full US and global release.

In the next post, I’ll write about finalizing the book as a “finished product”, and then building a book launch strategy (actual multiple strategies) and shifting gears from “writing and creating” mode, to marketing and selling the book and being the face and voice for it’s message.

Let me know your experience of writing and publishing (or wanting to write and publish) below!

Lifestyle Entrepreneur Reader Makes $12,000 in 6 Weeks

A few weeks ago I got a very cool, and quite unexpected email from my friend in Canada linking to this article: Montrealer Sells $12k in Six Weeks After Creating Shopify Page. 

So I read the lead paragraph and it made my day:

“Montrealer Anna Van Tuinen had always designed and created paper jewelry figures since she was in high school, but any thought of making a business of it would have to come after retirement from her job as a speech pathologist.

After a bit of encouragement from a business mentor as well as reading the book “Lifestyle Entrepreneur” by Jesse Krieger, the 25-year-old “took the plunge”. In one day she created a simple online shop on Canadian ecommerce software platform Shopify. Six weeks later she had sold over $12,000 worth of her “Paper Anniversary” paper jewelry.”

Considering that Lifestyle Entrepreneur hasn’t come out in Canada yet, I was immediately intrigued as to how Anna found my book, and very interested to hear her story of how it inspired her to start a custom paper jewelry business in a weekend. So I invited her onto a Google Hangout to share her story and showcase some of her jewelry!

How Anna Built Paper Anniversary In a Weekend

Check out this video where I interview Anna Van Tuinen, founder of www.Paper-Anniversary.com (*Anna is on camera starting at [6:40], slight tech glitch with Google Hangout)

What Anna Learned From Launching Quickly

The BIG Idea of Paper Anniversary: It is customary for husbands to give their wives 1st anniversary gifts made of paper. People are searching online for them every day of the year. Anna realized she could serve this active niche market with her paper jewelry.

On Whether and When to Quit Your Job: “I talked to a lot of local jewelry makers in Montreal, and across the board their advice was ‘just don’t quit your day job’, but after launching and making the first couple sales that’s exactly what I did…and it’s paid off to have all that extra time to grow the business”

On the Value of Moving Fast: “Don’t wait until everything is perfectly in place before starting to get your business going. If you keep waiting for everything to fall into place, it’s never going to happen.” – Just get started and tweak things as you go.

On Lifestyle and Business: “You’ve got to build your business around the way you want to live, I decided to change things in my life to support running the business full-time as soon as I could. It’s easier than expected, but you’ve got to take action”

On Being Passionate and Proactive: “I really think that everybody has the potential to build a business based on the skills they have and what they’re passionate about. It’s too common that we don’t use our full potential. Take the time to get clear on how you would prefer to be living and doing business and go for it!” – Anna completed the Identity exercise in Lifestyle Entrepreneur, you can do it too here: Discover and Design Your True Identity

On Becoming a Lifestyle Entrepreneur: “After reading your book I was inspired to travel more, and I’m excited to say I just booked a ticket to Thailand! I’m going to meet with some of the paper makers who I’ve ordered from to make jewelry and also sell my jewelry around the country”

Next Steps for Anna and Paper Anniversary: Given the fast growth of the business, Anna is now bringing on more people to help with marketing and reaching out to new, unique paper suppliers (some of whom she’ll be paying a personal visit in SE Asia).

 The Inspiration and Impact of Lifestyle Entrepreneur

Stories like these inspire and uplift me. As an author, it is perhaps one of the most rewarding aspects of writing and publishing a book. Seeing first-hand results from people like Anna who were inspired to turn their passions into products and build a business they love – THAT is so rewarding and fun!

So consider this an open casting call: If you’ve read Lifestyle Entrepreneur, been inspired and taken action to build a business that reflects your interests and passions, please get in touch with me so I can learn from you and share your story just like we’re doing here with Anna (just reach out on the Let’s Talk page)

Ready to Build Your Business In a Weekend?

If you’re as inspired as I am by Anna’s story, isn’t it time you took action to build a business of your own? A business you love and look forward to working on that supports a lifestyle of travel, freedom and opportunity.

Click here to learn more about my signature training program Business In a Weekend and grab the first 3 chapters of the new and improved Lifestyle Entrepreneur here.

Learn More About Anna’s Story and Paper Anniversary

Show some love to Anna and check out all her beautiful jewelry pieces here: www.Paper-Anniversary.com

Read the article from BetaKit on Paper Anniversary

Follow her on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/PaperAnniversary

Congratulations Anna and keep us informed as you do bigger and better things with your business. Excited to hear about what’s next for you and Paper Anniversary.

To your success,

Jesse Krieger