Showing posts from 2008

Merry Christmas from the Ashley's! 2008

Seth Godin is worth your time

Many of you already read his blog and his books, but for those of you who have never heard of Seth Godin here's my pitch: Seth Godin has been leading the development of marketing on the internet for over 12 years. He has great businesses, like Squidoo , and writes entertaining and informative books. I read his blog almost every day... because he actually posts something new and interesting almost every day. If you have a business, or work in a business, and you care... about anything really, you will benefit from reading Seth Godin . I sure have.


That's National Novel Writing Month for those of you who have never heard of it before. Basically, you start writing on November 1st and stop writing on November 30th. Your goal is to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. I'm writing my 30-day novel in FastPencil of course. If you're a NANOWRIMO let me know and I can set you up with an account, too. Good luck writers!

FastPencil is a Revolution

One of the most important freedoms we have in the United States is the right to free speech. But sometimes it feels like our little voice is barely a whisper, especially when we have to compete with mass media voices like Oprah Winfrey or Bill O'Reilly. Couple that with the traditional publishing industry and their built-in barriers to entry, and your whisper becomes less than a hush. But things are changing. People are finding their voice. There is a revolution happening. Those voices are coming out of the shadows, out of the homes, out of the cubicles and competing with mass media. You can see it with the rise of Blogging, the fall of Newspapers and Magazines, and the emergence of self-publishing on a global scale. The publishing industry is in chaos. The walls of elite authorship are coming down. The power of publishing, mass communication on an international level, is going back to the people. Today you can be heard across the globe with a click of a button. You can join the di

What's your brand?

Do you have a personal brand? What does it communicate about you? Does your brand communicate integrity, honesty, service? Or does your brand communicate cheap, easy, unstable? Just like a business, you should go through the process of identifying your core values, your vision and strategy on a personal level, and jot down a few key points for your brand. Then make an effort to align your brand with your core values. Today your picture is going to show up on Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, your blog, your web site... you may even be in some YouTube videos. When people see you and read your story, watch your video, read what's written on your wall—what are you telling them about your brand?

Ever tried writing a book?

I estimate 9 out of 10 people I talk to want to write a book. Most have started one at least once. Many have started several times. Even Barack Obama's mother started a book about her life story. After she died her daughter found the book, she had written only 3 pages. I believe she hit the same wall we all do when we start writing a book. And she did what most of us do when we hit that wall, she put the papers into a drawer and forgot about them. But her son, Barack Obama , managed to become a best-selling author. Millions of people write books every year, so it's not impossible. But what does it take to pull it off? It's not as mysterious as you might think. Writing a book takes four key ingredients: 1. Discipline 2. Organization 3. Cause 4. Workflow Discipline is necessary because you will face times when you just don't want to write. You don't feel like writing, you don't have the energy, you don't know what to write. But discipline is the art of doing w

Courage and Hope and Reason in Politics?

Yes We Can

Who are you to believe you are too small to make a difference, too weak to fight for change, too battered to hope for a brighter future? Is there anyone out there who is ready to make a difference, ready to voice the truth, ready to take a stand? You are not too small, you are not too weak, you are not too defeated. There is only one way to make a difference. You cannot do it in your head, you cannot do it in your heart, you cannot make a change without leaving the safety of your own thoughts. The only way we can make a change is to voice it to the world, to bring it down to our own feet, to make ripples in our own life. Step outside and tell everyone, "We can... Yes, we can!"

Ruby on Rails Programmer Wanted

I'm looking for someone here in Santa Cruz to help out with a Ruby on Rails project. If anyone out there wants to help, or knows a Ruby coder, email me asap. The web site is, check it out and let me know what you think.

Working on a new business:

It seems like everyone I talk to wants to write a book. So I came up with a new business called to help my family and friends write the books they always talk about. It's really a fast, easy, organized way to write. If you want to write a book, try it out: . Let me know what you think!