More on Entrepreneurship/Creators
4 months ago
One of the biggest publishers in the world offered me a book deal, but I don't feel deserving of it.
My ego is so huge it won't fit through the door.
I don't know how I feel about it. I should be excited. Many of you have this exact dream to publish a book with a well-known book publisher and get a juicy advance.
Let me dissect how I'm thinking about it to help you.
How it happened
An email comes in. A generic "can we put a backlink on your website and get a freebie" email.
Almost deleted it.
Then I noticed the logo. It seemed shady. I found the URL. Check. I searched the employee's LinkedIn. Legit. I avoided middlemen. Check.
Mixed feelings. LinkedIn hasn't valued my writing for years. I'm just a guy in an unironed t-shirt whose content they sell advertising against.
They get big dollars. I get $0 and a few likes, plus some email subscribers.
Still, I felt adrenaline for hours.
I texted a few friends to see how they felt. I wrapped them.
Messages like "No shocker. You're entertaining online." I didn't like praises, so I blushed.
The thrill faded after hours. Who knows?
Most authors desire this chance.
"You entitled piece of crap, Denning!"
You may think so. Okay. My job is to stand on the internet and get bananas thrown at me.
I approached writing backwards. More important than a book deal was a social media audience converted to an email list.
Romantic authors think backward. They hope a fantastic book will land them a deal and an audience.
Rarely occurs. So I never pursued it. It's like permission-seeking or the lottery.
Not being a professional writer, I've never written a good book. I post online for fun and to express my opinions.
Writing is therapeutic. I overcome mental illness and rebuilt my life this way. Without blogging, I'd be dead.
I've always dreamed of staying alive and doing something I love, not getting a book contract. Writing is my passion. I'm a winner without a book deal.
Why I was given a book deal
You may assume I received a book contract because of my views or follows. Nope.
They gave me a deal because they like my writing style. I've heard this for eight years.
Several authors agree. One asked me to improve their writer's voice.
Takeaway: highlight your writer's voice.
What if they discover I'm writing incompetently?
An edited book is published. It's edited.
I need to master writing mechanics, thus this concerns me. I need help with commas and sentence construction.
I must learn verb, noun, and adjective. Seriously.
Writing a book may reveal my imposter status to a famous publisher. Imagine the email
"It happened again. He doesn't even know how to spell. He thinks 'less' is the correct word, not 'fewer.' Are you sure we should publish his book?"
I'm capable of blogging. Even listicles. So what?
Writing for a major publisher feels advanced.
I only blog. I'm good at listicles. Digital media executives have criticized me for this.
It is allegedly clickbait.
Or it is following trends.
Alternately, growth hacking.
Never. I learned copywriting to improve my writing.
Apple, Amazon, and Tesla utilize copywriting to woo customers. Whoever thinks otherwise is the wisest person in the room.
Old-schoolers loathe copywriters.
Their novels sell nothing.
They assume their elitist version of writing is better and that the TikTok generation will invest time in random writing with no subheadings and massive walls of text they can't read on their phones.
I'm terrified of book proposals.
My friend's book proposal suggestion was contradictory and made no sense.
They told him to compose another genre. This book got three Amazon reviews. Is that a good model?
The process disappointed him. I've heard other book proposal horror stories. Tim Ferriss' book "The 4-Hour Workweek" was criticized.
Because he has thick skin, his book came out. He wouldn't be known without that.
I hate book proposals.
An ongoing commitment
Writing a book is time-consuming.
I appreciate time most. I want to focus on my daughter for the next few years. I can't recreate her childhood because of a book.
No idea how parents balance kids' goals.
My silly face in a bookstore. Really?
I don't want my face in bookstores. I fear fame. I prefer anonymity.
I want to purchase a property in a bad Australian area, then piss off and play drums. Is bookselling worth it?
Are there even bookstores anymore?
(Except for Ryan Holiday's legendary Painted Porch Bookshop in Texas.)
What's most important about books
Many were duped.
Tweets and TikTok hopscotch vids are their future. Short-form content creates devoted audiences that buy newsletter subscriptions.
Depth wins (if you can get people to buy your book). Creating a book will strengthen my reader relationships.
It's cheaper than my classes, so more people can benefit from my life lessons.
A deeper justification for writing a book
If I write this book, my daughter will follow it. "Look what you can do, love, when you ignore critics."
That's my favorite.
I'll be her best leader and teacher. If her dad can accomplish this, she can too.
My kid can read my book when I'm gone to remember her loving father.
Last paragraph made me cry.
This book thing might make me sound like Karen.
The upside is... Building in public, like I have with online writing, attracts the right people.
Proof-of-work over proposals, beautiful words, or huge aspirations. If you want a book deal, try writing online instead of the old manner.
I'm a rural Aussie. Writing a book in the big city is intimidating. Will I do it? Lots to think about. Right now, some level of reflection and gratitude feels most appropriate.
Sometimes when you don't feel worthy, it gives you the greatest lessons. That's how I feel about getting offered this book deal.
Perhaps you can relate.
9 months ago
The three-year business plan is obsolete for startups.
If asked, run.
An entrepreneur asked me about her pitch deck. A Platform as a Service (PaaS).
She told me she hadn't done her 5-year forecasts but would soon.
I said, Don't bother. I added "time-wasting."
“I've been asked”, she said.
“Get another VC. If he asks, it's because he doesn't understand your solution or to waste your time.”
Some VCs are lagging. They're still using steam engines.
10-years ago, 5-year forecasts were requested.
Since then, we've adopted a 3-year plan.
But It's outdated.
Max one year.
What has happened?
Revolutionary technology. NO-CODE.
Product viability tests are shorter. Hugely. SaaS and PaaS.
Let me explain:
Building a minimum viable product (MVP) that works only takes a few months.
1 to 2 months for practical testing.
Your company plan can be validated or rejected in 4 months as a consequence.
After validation, you can ask for VC money. Even while a prototype can generate revenue, you may not require any.
Good VCs won't ask for a 3-year business plan in that instance.
If you want, establish a three-year plan, but realize that the second year will be different.
You may have changed your business model by then.
A VC isn't interested in a three-year business plan because your solution may change.
Your ability to create revenue will be key.
But also, to pivot.
They will be interested in your value proposition.
They will want to know what differentiates you from other competitors and why people will buy your product over another.
What will interest them is your resilience, your ability to bounce back.
Not to mention your mindset. The fact that you won’t get discouraged at the slightest setback.
The grit you have when facing adversity, as challenges will surely mark your journey.
The authenticity of your approach. They’ll want to know that you’re not just in it for the money, let alone to show off.
The fact that you put your guts into it and that you are passionate about it. Because entrepreneurship is a leap of faith, a leap into the void.
They’ll want to make sure you are prepared for it because it’s not going to be a walk in the park.
They’ll want to know your background and why you got into it.
They’ll also want to know your family history.
And what you’re like in real life.
So a 5-year plan…. You can bet they won’t give a damn. Like their first pair of shoes.
6 months ago
How To Launch A Business Without Any Risk
> Say Hello To The Lean-Hedge Model
People think starting a business requires significant debt and investment. Like Shark Tank, you need a world-changing idea. I'm not saying to avoid investors or brilliant ideas.
Investing is essential to build a genuinely profitable company. Think Apple or Starbucks.
Entrepreneurship is risky because many people go bankrupt from debt. As starters, we shouldn't do it. Instead, use lean-hedge.
Simply defined, you construct a cash-flow business to hedge against long-term investment-heavy business expenses.
What the “fx!$rench-toast” is the lean-hedge model?
When you start a business, your money should move down, down, down, then up when it becomes profitable.
Many people don't survive the business's initial losses and debt. What if, we created a cash-flow business BEFORE we started our Starbucks to hedge against its initial expenses?
Lean-hedge has two sections. Start a cash-flow business. A cash-flow business takes minimal investment and usually involves sweat and time.
Let’s take a look at some examples:
A Translation company
Personal portfolio website (you make a site then you do cold e-mail marketing)
FREELANCE (UpWork, Fiverr).
Infomarketing. (You design a knowledge-based product. You sell the info).
Online fitness/diet/health coaching ($50-$300/month, calls, training plan)
Amazon e-book publishing. (Medium writers do this)
YouTube, cash-flow channel
A web development agency (I'm a dev, but if you're not, a graphic design agency, etc.) (Sell your time.)
Online paralegal (A million lawyers work in the U.S).
Some dropshipping (Organic Tik Tok dropshipping, where you create content to drive traffic to your shopify store instead of spend money on ads).
(Disclaimer: My first two cash-flow enterprises, which were language teaching, failed terribly. My translation firm is now booming because B2B e-mail marketing is easy.)
Crossover occurs. Your long-term business starts earning more money than your cash flow business.
My cash-flow business (freelancing, translation) makes $7k+/month.
I’ve decided to start a slightly more investment-heavy digital marketing agency
Here are the anticipated business's time- and money-intensive investments:
($$$) Top Front-End designer's Figma/UI-UX design (in negotiation)
(Time): A little copywriting (I will do this myself)
($$) Creating an animated webpage with HTML (in negotiation)
Backend Development (Duration) (I'll carry out this myself using Laravel.)
Logo Design ($$)
Logo Intro Video for $
Video Intro (I’ll edit this myself with Premiere Pro)
Then evaluate product, place, price, and promotion. Consider promotion and pricing.
The lean-hedge model's point is:
Don't gamble. Avoid debt. First create a cash-flow project, then grow it steadily.
Check read my previous posts on “Nightmare Mode” (which teaches you how to make work as interesting as video games) and Why most people can't escape a 9-5 to learn how to develop a cash-flow business.
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2 months ago
The stunning new free AI image tool is called Leonardo AI.
Leonardo—The New Midjourney?
Users are comparing the new cowboy to Midjourney.
Leonardo.AI creates great photographs and has several unique capabilities I haven't seen in other AI image systems.
Midjourney's quality photographs are evident in the community feed.
Create Pictures Using Models
You can make graphics using platform models when you first enter the app (website):
Luma, Leonardo creative, Deliberate 1.1.
Clicking a model displays its description and samples:
Click Generate With This Model.
Then you can add your prompt, alter models, photos, sizes, and guide scale in a sleek UI.
Leonardo's Canvas editor lets you change created images by hovering over them:
The editor opens with masking, erasing, and picture download.
Develop Your Own Models
I've never seen anything like Leonardo's model training feature.
Upload a handful of similar photographs and save them as a model for future images. Share your model with the community.
You can make photos using your own model and a community-shared set of fine-tuned models:
Obtain Leonardo access
Leonardo is currently free.
Visit Leonardo.ai and click "Get Early Access" to receive access.
Add your email to receive a link to join the discord channel. Simply describe yourself and fill out a form to join the discord channel.
Please go to 👑│introductions to make an introduction and ✨│priority-early-access will be unlocked, you must fill out a form and in 24 hours or a little more (due to demand), the invitation will be sent to you by email.
I got access in two hours, so hopefully you can too.
I know there are many AI generative platforms, some free and some expensive, but Midjourney produces the most artistically stunning images and art.
Leonardo is the closest I've seen to Midjourney, but Midjourney is still the leader.
It's free now.
Leonardo's fine-tuned model selections, model creation, image manipulation, and output speed and quality make it a great AI image toolbox addition.
1 year ago
2 NFT-based blockchain games that could soar in 2022
NFTs look ready to rule 2022, and the recent pivot toward NFT utility in P2E gaming could make blockchain gaming this year’s sector darling.
After the popularity of decentralized finance (DeFi) came the rise of nonfungible tokens (NFTs), and to the surprise of many, NFTs took the spotlight and now remain front and center with the highest volume in sales occurring at the start of January 2022.
Nearly 50% of active cryptocurrency wallets connected to decentralized applications in November were for playing games. The percentage of wallets linked to decentralized finance, or DeFi, dapps fell to 45% during the same period, after months of being the leading dapp use case.
Blockchain play-to-earn (P2E) game Axie infinity skyrocketed and kicked off a gaming craze that is expected to continue all throughout 2022. Crypto pundits and gaming advocates have high expectations for P2E blockchain-based games and there’s bound to be a few sleeping giants that will dominate the sector.
Let’s take a look at five blockchain games that could make waves in 2022.
The inspiration for DeFi Kingdoms came from simple beginnings — a passion for investing that lured the developers to blockchain technology. DeFi Kingdoms was born as a visualization of liquidity pool investing where in-game ‘gardens’ represent literal and figurative token pairings and liquidity pool mining.
As shown in the game, investors have a portion of their LP share within a plot filled with blooming plants. By attaching the concept of growth to DeFi protocols within a play-and-earn model, DeFi Kingdoms puts a twist on “playing” a game.
Built on the Harmony Network, DeFi Kingdoms became the first project on the network to ever top the DappRadar charts. This could be attributed to an influx of individuals interested in both DeFi and blockchain games or it could be attributed to its recent in-game utility token JEWEL surging.
JEWEL is a utility token that allows users to purchase NFTs in-game buffs to increase a base-level stat. It is also used for liquidity mining to grant users the opportunity to make more JEWEL through staking.
JEWEL is also a governance token that gives holders a vote in the growth and evolution of the project. In the past four months, the token price surged from $1.23 to an all-time high of $22.52. At the time of writing, JEWEL is down by nearly 16%, trading at $19.51.
Surging approximately 1,487% from its humble start of $1.23 four months ago in September, JEWEL token price has increased roughly 165% this last month alone, according to data from CoinGecko.
Guild of Guardians
Guild of Guardians is one of the more anticipated blockchain games in 2022 and it is built on ImmutableX, the first layer-two solution built on Ethereum that focuses on NFTs. Aiming to provide more access, it will operate as a free-to-play mobile role-playing game, modeling the P2E mechanics.
Similar to blockchain games like Axie Infinity, Guild of Guardians in-game assets can be exchanged. The project seems to be of interest to many gamers and investors with its NFT founder sale and token launch generating nearly $10 million in volume.
Launching its in-game token in October of 2021, the Guild of Guardians (GOG) tokens are ERC-20 tokens known as ‘gems’ inside the game. Gems are what power key features in the game such as minting in-game NFTs and interacting with the marketplace, and are available to earn while playing.
For the last month, the Guild of Guardians token has performed rather steadily after spiking to its all-time high of $2.81 after its launch. Despite the token being down over 50% from its all-time high, at the time of writing, some members of the community are looking forward to the possibility of staking and liquidity pools, which are features that tend to help stabilize token prices.
1 year ago
Which Metaverse Is Better, Decentraland or Sandbox?
The metaverse is the most commonly used term in current technology discussions. While the entire tech ecosystem awaits the metaverse's full arrival, defining it is difficult. Imagine the internet in the '80s! The metaverse is a three-dimensional virtual world where users can interact with digital solutions and each other as digital avatars.
The metaverse is a three-dimensional virtual world where users can interact with digital solutions and each other as digital avatars.
Among the metaverse hype, the Decentraland vs Sandbox debate has gained traction. Both are decentralized metaverse platforms with no central authority. So, what's the difference and which is better? Let us examine the distinctions between Decentraland and Sandbox.
2 Popular Metaverse Platforms Explained
The first step in comparing sandbox and Decentraland is to outline the definitions. Anyone keeping up with the metaverse news has heard of the two current leaders. Both have many similarities, but also many differences. Let us start with defining both platforms to see if there is a winner.
Decentraland, a fully immersive and engaging 3D metaverse, launched in 2017. It allows players to buy land while exploring the vast virtual universe. Decentraland offers a wide range of activities for its visitors, including games, casinos, galleries, and concerts. It is currently the longest-running metaverse project.
Decentraland began with a $24 million ICO and went public in 2020. The platform's virtual real estate parcels allow users to create a variety of experiences. MANA and LAND are two distinct tokens associated with Decentraland. MANA is the platform's native ERC-20 token, and users can burn MANA to get LAND, which is ERC-721 compliant. The MANA coin can be used to buy avatars, wearables, products, and names on Decentraland.
Sandbox, the next major player, began as a blockchain-based virtual world in 2011 and migrated to a 3D gaming platform in 2017. The virtual world allows users to create, play, own, and monetize their virtual experiences. Sandbox aims to empower artists, creators, and players in the blockchain community to customize the platform. Sandbox gives the ideal means for unleashing creativity in the development of the modern gaming ecosystem.
The project combines NFTs and DAOs to empower a growing community of gamers. A new play-to-earn model helps users grow as gamers and creators. The platform offers a utility token, SAND, which is required for all transactions.
What are the key points from both metaverse definitions to compare Decentraland vs sandbox?
It is ideal for individuals, businesses, and creators seeking new artistic, entertainment, and business opportunities. It is one of the rapidly growing Decentralized Autonomous Organization projects. Holders of MANA tokens also control the Decentraland domain.
Sandbox, on the other hand, is a blockchain-based virtual world that runs on the native token SAND. On the platform, users can create, sell, and buy digital assets and experiences, enabling blockchain-based gaming. Sandbox focuses on user-generated content and building an ecosystem of developers.
Sandbox vs. Decentraland
If you try to find what is better Sandbox or Decentraland, then you might struggle with only the basic definitions. Both are metaverse platforms offering immersive 3D experiences. Users can freely create, buy, sell, and trade digital assets. However, both have significant differences, especially in MANA vs SAND.
For starters, MANA has a market cap of $5,736,097,349 versus $4,528,715,461, giving Decentraland an advantage.
The MANA vs SAND pricing comparison is also noteworthy. A SAND is currently worth $3664, while a MANA is worth $2452.
The value of the native tokens and the market capitalization of the two metaverse platforms are not enough to make a choice. Let us compare Sandbox vs Decentraland based on the following factors.
The way Decentraland and Sandbox work is one of the main comparisons. From a distance, they both appear to work the same way. But there's a lot more to learn about both platforms' workings. Decentraland has 90,601 digital parcels of land.
Individual parcels of virtual real estate or estates with multiple parcels of land are assembled. It also has districts with similar themes and plazas, which are non-tradeable parcels owned by the community. It has three token types: MANA, LAND, and WEAR.
Sandbox has 166,464 plots of virtual land that can be grouped into estates. Estates are owned by one person, while districts are owned by two or more people. The Sandbox metaverse has four token types: SAND, GAMES, LAND, and ASSETS.
The maturity of metaverse projects is also a factor in the debate. Decentraland is clearly the winner in terms of maturity. It was the first solution to create a 3D blockchain metaverse. Decentraland made the first working proof of concept public. However, Sandbox has only made an Alpha version available to the public.
The MANA vs SAND comparison would also include support for both platforms. Digital Currency Group, FBG Capital, and CoinFund are all supporters of Decentraland. It has also partnered with Polygon, the South Korean government, Cyberpunk, and Samsung.
SoftBank, a Japanese multinational conglomerate focused on investment management, is another major backer. Sandbox has the backing of one of the world's largest investment firms, as well as Slack and Uber.
Wallet compatibility is an important factor in comparing the two metaverse platforms. Decentraland currently has a competitive advantage. How? Both projects' marketplaces accept ERC-20 wallets. However, Decentraland has recently improved by bridging with Walletconnect. So it can let Polygon users join Decentraland.
Because Sandbox and Decentraland use the Ethereum blockchain, scalability is an issue. Both platforms' scalability is constrained by volatile tokens and high gas fees. So, scalability issues can hinder large-scale adoption of both metaverse platforms.
Decentraland vs Sandbox comparisons often include virtual real estate. However, the ability to buy virtual land on both platforms defines the user experience and differentiates them. In this case, Sandbox offers better options for users to buy virtual land by combining OpenSea and Sandbox. In fact, Decentraland users can only buy from the MANA marketplace.
The rate of development distinguishes Sandbox and Decentraland. Both platforms have been developing rapidly new features. However, Sandbox wins by adopting Polygon NFT layer 2 solutions, which consume almost 100 times less energy than Ethereum.
The platforms' collaborations are the key to determining "which is better Sandbox or Decentraland." Adoption of metaverse platforms like the two in question can be boosted by association with reputable brands. Among the partners are Atari, Cyberpunk, and Polygon. Rather, Sandbox has partnered with well-known brands like OpenSea, CryptoKitties, The Walking Dead, Snoop Dogg, and others.
Another key feature that distinguishes Sandbox and Decentraland is the ease of use. Sandbox clearly wins in terms of platform access. It allows easy access via social media, email, or a Metamask wallet. However, Decentraland requires a wallet connection.
The future development plans also play a big role in defining Sandbox vs Decentraland. Sandbox's future development plans include bringing the platform to mobile devices. This includes consoles like PlayStation and Xbox. By the end of 2023, the platform expects to have around 5000 games.
Decentraland, on the other hand, has no set plan. In fact, the team defines the decisions that appear to have value. They plan to add celebrities, creators, and brands soon, along with NFT ads and drops.
The comparison of Decentraland vs Sandbox provides a balanced view of both platforms. You can see how difficult it is to determine which decentralized metaverse is better now. Sandbox is still in Alpha, whereas Decentraland has a working proof of concept.
Sandbox, on the other hand, has better graphics and is backed by some big names. But both have a long way to go in the larger decentralized metaverse.