Dan Goggin's began with a nun's habit -- a rather bizarre gift from a friend who thought Mr. Goggin, then a little-known composer and actor, might use it theatrically someday. Then, coincidentally, another pal offered up a Saks Fifth Avenue mannequin, which Mr. Goggin dressed in the habit and posed around his New York apartment (washing dishes was a favorite). Visitors laughed, and inspiration struck.
What follows is a true tale of how dead nuns, deadpan actors and an investor's $25,000 gamble turned into a small fortune. Twenty years after receiving his habit, the cherubic 60-year-old Mr. Goggin now heads an empire of musicals based on the premise that anything amusing is more amusing when a nun does it. His original 1980s off-Broadway production, "Nunsense," follows five sisters as they raise funds to bury convent members poisoned by bad vichyssoise -- cooked by none other than Sister Julia, Child of God. The production unfolds like a Carol Burnett variety show, with the sisters crooning through various skits, jousting with audiences and unleashing an unapologetic liturgy of tame ecumenical one-liners: "How do you make holy water? ... You boil the hell out of it!"
You know, I could go on about belief systems all day long. (At least, I believe I could.) At certain points of evolution, these systems actually helped hold a community together.
Everyone “knew” there were fairies and elves in the woods at night, bathing could kill you, and you couldn’t get pregnant the first time you “did it”. This, of course, was before the Age of Enlightenment.
Now, however, I think we’re definitely sliding backwards. And the media owns a big chunk of the responsibility for this, for their “if it bleeds, it leads” system of selecting news stories. They honestly feel their job is to continually scare the bejesus out of everyone, and facts be damned.
The term “bootcamp” has been in vogue for the last few years. It is a term that is generally used for a multi-day event that has more than one speaker and that provides in-depth information about a given topic.
They are best promoted by joint e-mail marketing. Let’s say you know of a group of 20 information gurus that each had a list of 5,000 customers on their e-mail list. And let’s say that all 5,000 of those customers were interested in becoming a self-published author. If I was going to do a self-publishing bootcamp out in Las Vegas, I’d go to each of the gurus and say “Hey, folks, here’s the deal. This seminar’s going to cost $777. I’m willing to make the following deal with you. If you send this out to your list, I will set you up as an affiliate for this particular seminar, and you’ll get 50% of the registration dollars.”
Credit score is a niche I’m not all the wild about, but it’s still worth mentioning. The reason I don’t like this niche very much is that it has MFA written all over it. It’s really pretty bad. Still with some filtering and tweaking, you can make OK money with the credit score niche.
So what is credit score (also known as FICO score)? Basically it’s a number that supposedly indicates your credit worthiness – how likely you are to pay off your debts. It’s all based on statistical analysis and is surprisingly accurate, or so they say.
Recently, the government made a decision that once a year credit rating agencies (like Experian, Equifax or TransUnion) give you a free report (if you request it).
Inside a dreary warehouse in an industrial section of San Francisco, the floor was littered with bodies. Some lay in piles while others had been dismembered, their legs, heads, and arms carelessly strewn about. Judi Henderson-Townsend had come to buy a mannequin to use as a backyard sculpture after seeing one advertised online. The seller, it turned out, was a former window designer who collected and rented old mannequins. He was moving East and closing up shop, so Henderson-Townsend impulsively bought all 50 mannequins for $2,500. She stood them in her basement, then named her new business Mannequin Madness. That was four years ago. Today her mannequin inventory fills a basement, a two-car garage, and a separate storage facility.
As Bill Bonner of Agora Publishing is fond of pointing out, nobody wakes up in the morning, taps his or her significant other on the shoulder, and says, “Honey, let’s go out and buy some newsletters today.”
Indeed, the glut of free and low priced information competing for our subscriber’s limited time and attention today means we have to work harder than ever in our promotional copy to prove that our newsletter delivers tangible value far in excess of the subscription price.
Yet most newsletter promotions fail to convince most of the potential subscribers reading them of the value of what we are selling. Here are 5 common errors that, if avoided, will help you convince more of the people on the mailing lists you rent to try your publication.
Lawyer Pete Cardillo can still remember the horror of lying in bed one night while termites gnawed his house out from under him. "They were eating into the floorboards and eating toward me," he says. Thankfully, that was just a nightmare. But such scenarios have now entered Cardillo's daily life.
Sixteen months ago Cardillo, 48, left his post as a managing partner in the Tampa office of Pittsburgh-based Buchanan Ingersoll, one of the country's largest law firms, and opened his own practice exclusively dedicated to termite litigation. In 2005, Tampa-based Cardillo Law brought in revenues of about $550,000, with profits of an estimated $400,000. Cardillo goes after large extermination companies that he believes fail to detect or remove termites, and insurers that refuse to pay for damage.
Invoice factoring is a niche that I heard about. Literally. I first learned about factoring from Guy Kingston’s podcast called Mind Your Own Business.
So what is invoice factoring. Actually I don’t know exactly. This is how I understand factoring. Say, your business needs money. And it manufactures something. So it has accounts receivable and so on (meaning that somebody purchased your products and promised to pay or to be mor exact, it’s money which is owed to a company by a customer for products and services provided on credit).
Invoice factoring is a financial operation when a bank of a factoring company gives you money and takes your invoices and makes sure that folks who own money pay up.
In 1981, John Zogby, a 33-year-old history professor and founder of the Utica Citizen's Lobby, decided to add another credential to his resume: mayor of Utica, N.Y. Then a curious thing happened: He lost, but he knew beforehand how much he would lose by. He and his students had conducted a preelection poll that showed him getting 14% to 15% of the vote. And that, says Zogby, is exactly what he got.
Kim Akhtar was a typical new yorker with a typical problem--too little closet space for all her clothing. "I've lived in New York for 20 years," she says. "You're always complaining about space." She knew her predicament was not unique--plenty of professionals and fashionistas have more designer clothes than closet space. Tired of the massive effort it took each year to switch her closet from spring to winter and store her off-season clothes with the local dry cleaner, Akhtar wanted a readily accessible place where she could store her things and keep them in good condition.