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10 QUESTIONS FOR…Praveen Puri, author of “Stock Trading Riches”


Author interview with Praveen PuriStock Trading Riches CoverPraveen Puri

Growing up in the Chicago area, Praveen Puri was interested in both the humanities/writing and math/science.  This continued into college, where he majored in computer science, while getting a minor in history.

After college, he neglected the writer inside, and focused on his career as a programmer.  As the years went by, Praveen started to get restless and started to explore a variety of subjects.  He rediscovered his love of writing, while developing a passion for business, trading, simplicity, minimalism, and Eastern philosophy.

While on the surface this might appear to be a very eclectic mix of subjects, Praveen feels that the key principles that underline all his interests are simplicity and minimalism.  Programming, trading, and writing are the disciplines he uses to express these qualities.

Today, Praveen writes and trades part time, while working full time as a vice president at a major bank.  He has written Stock Trading Riches, as well as two Sudoku books.  Praveen lives in the Chicago area with his wife (Rasika), son (Anshul), and 2 cockatiels (Mickey and Donnie).

1. Tell us about your latest book.

Stock Trading Riches teaches my trading system, which I am very passionate and proud of.  It reflects principles from Taoism, jazz improvisation, simplicity, and minimalism.  It allows anyone, no matter what their level of financial experience, to take charge of their investments.  Not only does it make me money, but it feels like a form of meditation.

2. How did you get started as a writer?

I enjoyed writing in school, especially in junior high school and high school.  I especially enjoyed writing essays in history class.  I also loved computers, and I feel that programming is a marriage of writing and math/logic.

3. What does a typical day look like for you?

I wake up and work 9-6 for a major bank.  I rarely go to the office downtown – instead I work from my home/office.  After work, I spend the evening with my wife and son.  After they go to bed, I write for a few hours before turning in.

4. Describe your desk/workspace.

It’s a large desk with my Dell laptop and a speaker phone.  Behind me, I have a hutch and shelves.  My Macbook and printer are there.

5. Favorite books (especially for writers)

“How to Sell Your Book on Amazon” by Brent Sampson, Peter Shankman’s PR book, and any book by Joe Vitale.

6. Tell us 3 interesting/crazy things about you

I’ve been to both a summer and winter Olympics, and to an NBA Finals game.  I once saw Tony Bennett perform at the re-opening of a major Chicago area mall.  I later saw him at an art store, and he was signing autographs.  He asked me how to spell my name, and I was nervous, blanked out, and gave him my driver’s license!  He looked at me a little weirdly, and copied my name off my driver’s license.  I lived my whole life (42 years) in the Chicago area – which seems strange when most people around me seem to have lived in many different places.

7. Favorite quote

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication” by Leonardo da Vinci

8. Best and worst part of being a writer

Best: The feeling I get while reading a sentence that I have reworked and crafted to my satisfaction.

Worst: When I re-read something that I have previously written and then feel like rewriting a sentence or paragraph.  This then leads to wanting to rewrite something else, and so on… With writing, programs, and trading systems, you have to learn to accept them at a certain point, resist the urge to tinker, and move on.

9. Advice for other writers

Just write! Fight writer’s block by writing the middle of your story first.  Then, go back and craft/polish your work by adding the beginning and end.  On my blog “Tao of Simplicity”, I also have articles on Hemingway’s tips for minimalist writing.  This includes using action words and vigorous English.

10. Tell us a story about your writing experience. 

After Stock Trading Riches was published, I re-read it, and kept seeing things I wanted to rewrite!  As I said above, you have to discipline yourself to reach a feeling of satisfaction with your work, and just learn to accept it as is – without anymore tinkering.  So I actually destroyed the original Word version of the book!  I only kept the PDF version.  So, if I really want to “rewrite” it, I would have to write a whole new book.

Where can people buy the book and learn more about you?

My book is available at Amazon.com and Target.com

My Book’s Website: http://www.stocktradingriches.com

My “Simple Trading System” Blog: http://simple-trading-system.blogspot.com/

My “Tao of Simplicity” Blog: http://tao-simple.blogspot.com/

10 QUESTIONS FOR…Lee Martinson


Author interview with Lee Martinsonbookcoverrealweb33lee

1.    Tell us about your latest book.

“A Heavenly College Education on an Earthly Budget” is a door that opens into to a new world of what real learning and real education is, and how a student can get it on his own terms, and for less money. It teaches such things as how important having a vision is—in fact it shows how having a vision is even more important than a college degree and more important than goals.


It shows how to disaster proof an education so the student can be assured of getting a job. It shows how to fall in love with, and become good learning all over again. It has 10 proven financial aid planning steps, and how to get admitted and win scholarships. It provides tools, techniques, and shortcuts for finding a college that will set the student’s brain on fire.


2. How did you get started as a writer?

I love words. I collect words. I play with words. One night I had a dream about a song, and that turned into a string of 40 + songs that I wrote lyrics for. Then one day I started writing instructional material for clients and it slowly got bigger and bigger and more creative. It then turned into a vision, which became a book, and a mission.

3. What does a typical day look like for you?

Get up; read the scriptures, newspaper etc. Have a leisurely breakfast with my family, and read something inspirational together. Perhaps play with my kids for a few minutes. Drive to the office.

At the office my day consists of writing, talking with clients, working on projects etc.

4. Describe your desk/workspace.

Desk? I have 7 desks. One is reasonably neat and that is where I meet with clients. The others are behind a divider and are cluttered with all the different projects and things I am working on. Two of them are higher desks that I stand at. I cannot bear to sit all day—it puts me to sleep.

I do some of my best thinking and working while on my feet. I think that there is an additional reason besides that of helping me stay awake. It is also because since I don’t have time to shower every day, when I stand, my nose is further away from my feet and it appreciates the distance, allowing my brain to concentrate on the task at hand.

5. Favorite books (especially for writers)

A Tale of Two Cities. A pillar of Iron. The History of the Peloponnesian Wars. The Agony and the Ecstasy.

6. Tell us 3 interesting/crazy things about you

·       I’m still married to the same woman I started with 22 years ago.

·       I once had a water balloon fight at Roseanne Barr’s house. She was my cousin’s best friend while they were growing up.

·       I don’t always follow the crowd—in many ways. For instance, did you know that if you sit on the bed, grab your pants in both hands and then roll back on the bed, sticking your feet in the air, you actually can put your pants on both legs at once? Sometimes I do that, just to start the day creative and different.

7. Favorite quote

 “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.

8. Best and worst part of being a writer

The best: The thrill of living out your passion on paper and having people appreciate it.

The worst: Taking all the risk and working so hard and then realizing it isn’t going anywhere unless you get better at marketing.


9. Advice for other writers

Ahead of time, know how and where and to whom you will market the book, and then keep that in mind as you write the book. This forces you to write better and more cohesively, so it will be tailored for the right audience. 

10. Tell us a story about your writing experience. 

One thing that made my writing so enjoyable was that I concurrently read classic books that inspired me and gave me ideas—and even epiphanies at times. It really lit up my brain and made it so that words would just flow out at times.

Where can people buy your book?

If they go to www.LeeMartinson.com , there are links to Amazon, and Barnes and Noble, or a link to buy direct. The thing about going there first is that they can also get a free report about Financial Aid and Admission Tips. 


10 QUESTIONS FOR…Kenny Golde, Hollywood filmmaker and author


Author interview with Kenny Goldecoverkgheadshot

Kenny Golde is a filmmaker and author.  In 2008, he directed and produced “Uncross the Stars,” a comedic drama starring Academy Award nominee Barbara Hershey and “Hellboy” star Ron Perlman.  Prior to that, Kenny directed and wrote the screenplay for “The Job,” a thriller starring Daryl Hannah, distributed by Lions Gate Entertainment, and he co-wrote “The Smokers,” starring Dominique Swain and Busy Phillips, distributed by MGM/UA.

Kenny has written two fiction novels, the Sci-Fi adventure “Apollo Main,” currently available on Amazon, and the soon to be released historical drama, “A Full Measure of Happiness.”

His latest book is “The Do-It-Yourself Bailout: How I reduced my credit card debt from $212,000 to $30,000 in six months and saved over $100,000,” a true story of Kenny’s experiences negotiating settlements with major U.S. banks to reduce his debt by 85%.  He is currently giving lectures and interviews to teach others the process of Do-It-Yourself debt reduction.  He lives in Los Angeles, CA..

1. Tell us about your latest book.

In 2007, while I was shooting “Uncross the Stars,” my good friend and financier became ill and, sadly, passed away, leaving me to cover nearly a quarter of a million dollars in expenses to finish the film.  I had to put most of it on credit cards with the anticipation that we would finish the film, sell it and pay-off the balances. 

Unfortunately, just as we were finishing the film the housing market collapsed, then the credit markets collapsed, and with them the market for independent films collapsed.  I was servicing the debt, paying nearly $4000 a month in interest. I was overwhelmed, losing sleep, losing hair, I even lost a girlfriend because I couldn’t focus on life or fun or relationships. The debt was consuming me.  I was scared for my future and quickly sliding toward bankruptcy and destitution.  

“The Do-It-Yourself Bailout” is not just the story of my experiences negotiating my debt, it is the story of my personal journey through the fear, shame and pain, eventually coming to a place of acceptance that allowed me to treat the negotiations as business, without hindering myself through doubt and self-recrimination.

Now, I hope that my experienccs might help others in my situation to overcome the emotion and self-judgment that comes with their debt, negotiate settlements on their own debt, and start living their life with freedom and joy again.

2. How did you get started as a writer?

I’d always wanted to be a writer.  I was the kid in 3rd grade who would take a one-page class project home for the weekend and come back with twenty.  I wrote my first novel in the 9th grade. It was horrible, but I felt a great sense of accomplishment the night I typed the last sentence.

Professional writing started for me when I graduated from Berkeley, returned to Los Angeles and started working in the film business.  I started as a producer to learn filmmaking, then put my production skills to use to get my own scripts made. I co-wrote “The Smokers,” then wrote and directed a half-hour short film called “Food for Thought,” which aired on HBO.  The first full length screenplay that I wrote and directed was “The Job.” 

After making a couple of films I decided that I missed the prose writing of my youth and turned back to novel writing. Now I am a full-time screewriter and part-time novelist.

3. What does a typical day look like for you?

Every morning I wake up and have to “create a day.”  I’ve been a freelance writer and filmmaker for ten years. I can hardly remember the last time I had to go to an office.  I really am thankful and fortunate to have a life that allows me to write everyday, but it is a challenge to turn creative freedom into business on a regular basis.

Creating a day could be working all day on a script, or making phone calls all day to set meetings with producers or financiers on the road to getting a film made.  Sometimes I’ll spend whole morning re-cutting my director’s reel or a trailer for one of my films, or working on my website.  It’s amazing how three hours can go by just burning a couple of DVD’s and getting them to the post office.  I wish I had an assistant, but oh well, not yet.

These days, with “The Do-It-Yourself Bailout,” I spend a lot of time blogging, submitting articles on various websites, social networking, and trying to generate opportunities for interviews and appearances to promote the book.

I also try to go jogging with my dog at least several times a week, find an hour a day to read, and keep up on recent film releases.

4. Describe your desk/workspace.

I’m not ritualistic about my writing space.  I can write almost anywhere.  I once wrote most of a screenplay by hand sitting in a bar in SoHo, drinking beers while the place filled in and got louder and I didn’t even notice. When I write by hand I tend to have my left elbow on the table and my forehead leaning in my left palm while I scribble on the page.  I also spend a lot of time with my laptop at cafes and coffee shops.  I have three criteria to a good café to write at: 1) all day free parking 2) food as well as a good selection of hot tea 3) lots of power plugs and free internet access.  There are a good half dozen cafes in Los Angeles that I write in as often as I write at home.

As far as home goes, I used to have my desk in a separate bedroom that I sued as an office, but a few months ago I moved the desk back into my bedroom and work in there. I don’t know why.  Maybe the office was too big. 

I have a light colored, wooded desk.  My laptop and an external monitor.  A lot of hard drives and plugs and cables.  Two printers, a laser printer and a color ink jet. Nothing fancy.

5. Favorite books (especially for writers)

“How to Make a Good Script Great” by Linda Segar

“The Art of Dramatic Writing” by Lajos Egri

Herman Wouk’s “The Winds of War”

Vladimir Nabakov’s “Lolita”

Ayn Rand’s “The Fountainhead”

J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings”

Charles Dickens’s “A Tale of Two Cities”

6. Tell us 3 interesting/crazy things about you

My favorite snack is peanut butter and apples.

I’m amazed at how much a person can love a dog. My dog’s name is C.J., she’s a chocolate brown, 3 ½ year old Staffordshire Terrier.

I’ve been scuba diving with Manta Rays.

7. Favorite quote

I have two:

“Success is the ability to move from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” Winston Churchill

“Nobody every went broke underestimating the taste of the American People.” P.T. Barnum (I think)

8. Best and worst part of being a writer

The best part of being a writer is the escapism. No matter what’s going on in the world, no matter how bad the news is, or the economy, no matter the weather, I can always spend a few hours, days, weeks, in complete happiness, escaping to the lives of characters, the intricacies of plotting, the challenge of language, and my life feels full and complete.

The worst part of being a writer is the escapism.  When trying to get a film made is taking too long, or when the rejection slips on the novels come in, when there’s bad news about the war, the world, the economy or the weather, writing is always there as a way to not pay attention to it all, to let is slip by.  Months of life can slip by while writing, often leaving me afterward wondering whether they were used well or wasted.

9. Advice for other writers

My advice to writers is not to take advice.  I’ve taken some really bad advice in my life. When I was 18 and just starting out as a wanna-be screenwriter I went to a seminar on film production and met a man in his 60’s who’d written something like 200 TV scripts in his career.  I told him I’d written my first TV script at 14 and he said, “no one buys scripts from 14-year-olds.” And I believed him. I spent 15 years as a producer thinking I had to be “older,” (undefined, just “older”) before anyone would take me seriously as a writer.  Of course, in that time, I past the prime age for being hired as a TV writer, the 20’s, and then watched the movie “Thirteen” come out, written by a 13-year-old.  And if “don’t take advice” is too strong, then at the very least recognize that all advice is tinged by the giver’s interpretation of their own experiences and may have very little, if anything to do with you.  Learn, sure.  Study. Experience. Read. Write. Interpret. Idealize. But do it all from your own perspective, not someone else’s. 

10. Tell us a story about your writing experience. 

I really enjoyed an onset re-write I had do to while shooting “The Job.”  It was a rare rainy day in Los Angeles. A real RAINY day, not just drizzle but a down pour.  The river of water in the street was so bad it was carrying equipment away.  We blew two big lights and the sun was going down.  We’d been shooting inside most of the day and had another exterior scene to do and I knew there was no way we were going to finish the scene inside, move outside, get the big lights back up and get an exterior scene before we ran out of time.

So I rewrote about two and a half pages of script into one shot, a single camera move that began looking over a balcony at one character walking across a lobby, getting into an elevator, then following the elevator as it came up, he exited in one direction and the camera dollied the other way to reveal the other character watching him.

It wound up being one of my favorite shots in the film. We even used it in the trailer. A dozen people have asked me, “How did you come up with that shot?” and my answer is always the same: “Out of necessity.”

It was a big lesson, too.  For all the hours that I can labor over a single paragraph, sometimes the right thing just comes to you and you’ve got to go with it.

Where can people buy your books?

Yes, please, buy “The Do-It-Yourself Bailout.” Recommend it to friends. Buy it and give it to everyone you know. Please!  So many people are suffering and struggling in horrible debt right now.  I really hope that “The Do-It-Yourself Bailout” can save lives.  It’s available on my website, http://www.SettleYourCreditCards.com, and on Amazon.  I also have a blog on the website and would love to hear your thoughts on the book, as well as a link listing my upcoming media appearances and speaking engagements.

10 QUESTIONS FOR…David Hooper, radio host & “alternative” financial author


Author #15:david-bookdavid-hooper-head1

David Hooper, radio host, marketing guru and author 

David Hooper is a marketing expert and talk radio host based in Nashville, TN.  He is the author is several books, the latest of which is “10-Day Money Makeover – Simple Steps to Create More Money and Financial Prosperity Using Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT).”

1. Tell us about your latest book.

My latest book is called “10-Day Money Makeover – Simple Steps to Create More Money and Financial Prosperity Using Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT).”  I was inspired to write this book after working with some very successful people and noticing how they approached earning money. 

Working primarily in the music industry, I’ve seen a lot of “starving artist” types.  The difference between them and the people who are making a lot of money (or otherwise having success) is always much bigger than just the music they create.  Seeing that again and again took me down a path of writing about “wealth mindset” and this book is the fifth one I’ve done  on the subject.

2. How did you get started as a writer?

I started my company in 1995 and the writing I did at that time was primarily “business communication” such as press releases, promotions, advertising, and sales copy. 

Nashville has a huge publishing industry, mostly Bibles and religious material.  My uncle is a graphic designer and was doing a lot of art for books.  He invested in a short-run printing company can told me, “You should think about doing a book.”  So I did.  That was 2000 and the book was marketing advice for musicians.  It did well, so I kept at it.

3. What does a typical day look like for you?

There isn’t a typical day, but there are activities that I do on a consistent basis.  One of them is promotion and marketing.  Without those, you could have the best book in the world and it would never be read, because nobody would know about it.

I have a number of business ventures other than books, including hosting a weekly syndicated radio show.  To get everything done, you have to be organized, so I spend a lot of time doing that.  Not all my time, but more than most people.  Without a plan, there is no telling where you’ll end up.  So we plan out everything and have a “system” for tasks which happen with every project.

For example, each book we release needs certain things—editing, layout, cover design, etc.  I have a staff in place to help me with these things.  Same for the radio show—booking guests, production, editing, etc.  It would be impossible for me to do it all within the limited time we have.

Outsourcing tasks as well as great planning enable me to have plenty of free time, which I feel is an essential part of the business.  What I do requires creativity, so I do what I can to make sure I’m able to be creative when needed.  That means taking plenty of “downtime” for myself., often during the middle of the day. For example, I spent two hours at the gym today, between work projects.  Things like this help me to keep from getting burnt out.

4. Describe your desk/workspace.

I have two rooms in my home that are 100% dedicated to work.  One is a typical office room with a big desk, computer, phone, etc.  The other is a “planning room” with no electronics..  This is where I go to read information on new marketing strategies, plan my schedule, develop new products, and learn about how to create a better business.

5. Favorite books (especially for writers)

“1001 Ways to Market Your Books” by John Kremer

“Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill

I also suggest looking at any junk mail (email or postal) to get a feel for what gets people to take action.  This will help you to write in a way that gets people to take action.

6. Tell us 3 interesting/crazy things about you

My first recording session was when I was in elementary school. I sang on an album for kids.

I put out a comedy album in 1998.  I got a job as a phone psychic for Miss Cleo and pranked people who called me, pulling jokes and getting them to chant pop songs with me.  Strangely enough, that was my introduction to all the  “new age” stuff that I write serious books about now.

I subscribe to Cosmo, Glamour, Esquire, and Maxim because they help me write to average people.

7. Favorite quote

“Talk doesn’t cook rice.”  – Chinese Proverb

8. Best and worst part of being a writer

The coolest part is having a voice.

Not sure there is a “worst” part.  A lot of people I’ve talked to say marketing, but I’m a marketing guy, so I love that!

9. Advice for other writers

Get out and connect with people.  Ask questions and find out about how they live.  The more you know about people, the better you’ll write to them.

10. Tell us a story about your writing experience. 

I think this is the first time I’ve ever had writer’s block. 

Where can people buy your books?

You can get any of my books at Amazon. http://www.musicmarketing.com/ is my blog and has recordings of my radio show.