Sunday, June 24, 2012

Cashing In On Your Expertise & Ideas

The world does not always reward those who are the smartest, the nicest, or the most charitable. In fact, it is more inclined to give attention, money, and favor to those who have fallen from grace, who may be good at marketing but lack substance who are beautiful on the outside but not the inside. This column is not about what is fair or what is right. It is about how to get paid for whatever skills, knowledge, abilities, or ideas that you claim to have and believe to be of value.

What is the best way to cash out and make some money? Let’s list some possibilities:

·        Get a book published
·        Sell the movie rights to your story
·        Blackmail a rich entity or person
·        Be a high-powered consultant/lobbyist
·        Sue someone of wealth
·        Launch a new business
·        Sell your idea to an existing business (file a patent)
·        Get private investors to buy into your project

What you won’t find on the list is: work for someone, get lucky with investments, hope to win the lottery, or other unlikely or less predictable sources of income.

Truth is, few of us have the information, connections, or ideas that would truly be of great value to others but that does not stop any of us from trying to somehow cash-in. It nags at me, however, the answer to this question: How can one exploit their worth when they truly have something of value and merit to offer?

How does anyone put a price tag on their value? Someone who risks their life, you’d think, would be wealthy, but we don’t pay a lot to firemen, policemen, soldiers, etc. How about our brightest people who educate our next generation of leaders, shouldn’t they make big bucks? Many teachers and professors struggle financially. It seems to me, in our capitalistic society there is no formula for the rewarding of money to people based on the merits.

Dumb people make lots of money every day. People who break the law are rich. Those with special, but short-lived skills, such as models or athletes, can make huge sums of money. Those who speculate with other people’s money on Wall Street can win big even when their bets leads to huge losses for others.

What kind of world is this?

It is the world we live in and until it changes, you need to operate under its rules. That doesn’t mean you should also steal, cheat, and live unethically, but it means you cannot expect the world to reward you just because you are genius writer. You will need to put a value on your worth and then find a way to justify it. To realize your potential you will need to do more than write a great book – you will have to do a great job promoting it.

Cash in on your ideas and expertise by executing a book marketing campaign that launches you into notoriety. If you can’t do this, hire someone who can. Otherwise, you will be going over the list above of ways to make money and things like “blackmail” will start to look a little more appealing.

Interview With Author and Illustrator Veronica J. Brockett

1.      What is your new book about? Synopsis of GESSO SQUAD The Graphic Novel Volume One: 1,000 Star Demons and a Rain God: Lyra Newton is your typical perky high student with your average fears and anxieties. She's just worried about the next demon she has to slay before 5th period Biology class. But when a solar eclipse cause ancient demons to fall from the sky, it sets off a chain of events the world just wasn't prepared for. Meanwhile, Marshall Conte escapes an alien pirate ship with a gold box stuffed inside his pocket. Will Lyra and friends be able to stop a sinister three eyed fish from flooding the entire planet?

2.      What inspired you to write it? While I was in graduate school at The College of New Rochelle, I wanted to create something where students ages 9-12 could learn about art history.

3.      What are the rewards/challenges to the writing process? It's fun seeing my characters come of life on paper. Developing the story and finding a way to integrate an educational component to it was definitely a challenge.

4.      Any advice for a struggling writer? Take breaks from writing every once in a while. Sometimes stepping away from your project for a few days gives you time to look at your work with a fresh pair of eyes.

5.      Where do you see book publishing heading? I see the lines blurring between self-published and mainstream publishing. It seems that both self-published and mainstream authors have found success.

For more information, please consult:

Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels more important when discussed in the third-person.

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