Tag Archives: money

10 QUESTIONS FOR…”Three Cups” author Mark St. Germain


Author interview with Mark St. Germain

I’m Mark St. Germain; I wrote THREE CUPS and April Willy did the beautiful illustrations in it.. This is my first book. I’m a professional writer for films, television and theater. Films include co-writing Caroll Ballard’s DUMA, TV includes THE COSBY SHOW and my plays include CAMPING WITH HENRY AND TOM and FREUD’S LAST SESSION.  In May, a documentary film I conceived and directed, MY DOG, An Unconditional Love Story, will be released by New Video. It is a look at the special relationships between celebrities and their dogs and features Richard Gere, Glenn Close, Isaac Mizrahi, Lynn Redgrave and Billy Collins among many others.

1. Tell us about your latest book. This is the first

2. How did you get started as a writer?

Late. Directing a poetry review when I was in my late twenties I wrote some lyrics for a comedic song. When I heard the audience laugh I was hooked.

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

As close as 9-5 as possible, unless in rehearsals. In the morning I work on one project, in the afternoon another.

4. Describe your workspace.

A former den in our house in Pound Ridge, NY.

5. Favorite books (especially for writers)

There are so many good books for writers from THREE USES OF THE KNIFE by David Mamet to Stephen King’s ON WRITING.

6. Tell us 3 interesting/crazy things about you.

Small menagerie of Sarge, a rescued Lab mix, Charlie, an African Grey Parrot, Mimi, a Meyer Parrot, Connie, a Cockatiel, a pond of Goldfish and a coop of a dozen Chickens.

My son, Daniel, is a stand up comedian who I think is hilarious – especially jokes about me. On the other hand, my daughter, Kate, thinks my own jokes are the worst in the world and I consider it a triumph when she laughs despite herself.

7. Favorite quote:

“Laugh. Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful though you have considered all the facts.” Wendell Berry

8. Best and worst part of being a writer.

The solitary nature of it. And the solitary nature of it.

9. Advice for other writers.

Listen to your own voice, not the voices of praise or criticism that will always surround you.

10. Tell us a story about your writing experience.

I once did a rewrite on a tv film about Abraham Lincoln. When one of the Execs mused that the ending was too sad I asked whether he wanted it to stop pre-Fords Theater. He said, no, he wanted Lincoln to live.

Where can people buy your book?

3 CUPS  can be bought on our website, 3CUPSBOOK.COM or on Amazon.

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…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.