Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The Dark Before The Dawn

A quick word of warning... this is a pretty raw post. I'm feeling the frustration right now and I need to express it.

Starting your own business can be one HELL of a roller coaster ride. In the course of a day you can go from excitement to despair to hope to excitement to exhilaration back to despair.

Anything and everything is possible. And one thing is for SURE: it is HARD... AS... HELL.

Not that I'm complaining. I chose to do this. I'm committed to making it happen. It's been 7 months, and although things are looking up, I have yet to get caught up on the mountain of bills, which keep growing.

I feel I'm always just behind on everything critical and WAY behind on everything else.

This is one of the most difficult things I've ever done.

Alba and I constantly fight about money. There's always bills coming in. It seems like I'm always waiting for a check to arrive. I'm constantly paying overdraft charges on my bank account.

Frankly, the money situation sucks. Certainly not what I'd hoped for by now.

But again... I'm not complaining. I chose to do this. I'm committed to making it happen.

I know I will be successful. I feel it. I have the knowledge. I'm taking the actions. I'm (slowly) changing my mindset.

It's just that sometimes success seems like it's just beyond my reach. It's like I can see it. I can feel it. I know it's right there. I can even taste it. But I just can't quite reach it.

You can imagine the frustration I feel sometimes.

I've been pursuing success for the last two and a half years... although I suppose it's only been since I took the plunge and started my own business that I can really count that as progress.

Before then, I was just learning and wishing. Now I'm actually taking action.

But it's not a linear progress. It's like taking two steps forward, then two steps back, then a full step forward and a half step back. You get the idea.

Progress... but at a snail's pace.

But God knows I will never give up until I reach my goal of $50,000 per month in income.

That's almost 50 times what I made last month. But I know it's possible. Others are doing it. And that's all the encouragement I need.

I will persevere... I will continue plowing ahead... I will do whatever it takes... to break through this invisible wall.

Because just beyond is the fulfillment of all my dreams. And how can I give up when I'm so damn close?

They say it's always darkest just before the dawn.

And I can see the day breaking already...

The Stan

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Caught Red-Handed

Once when I was a kid, I meandered into the living room where my Dad was sitting in his favorite recliner watching TV.

Something immediately caught my eye. I noticed Dad had white powder sprinkled all over the front of his shirt. I recognized it immediately. And I wanted some.

"Oh! I want some powdered donuts!"

"We don't have any powdered donuts," he replied dismissively. Apparently, he was oblivious to the half kilo of evidence clinging to his chest.

"But you have powdered sugar all over your shirt!" His brows furrowed and he frowned as he looked down at the incriminating dust.

He quickly brushed it off, leaving faint white streaks in the cotton fibers of his T-shirt. "We don't have any powdered donuts," he repeated.

I continued my protest as he tried to go back to watching television. But I wouldn't have it. I wanted some powdered donuts, and the evidence of their existence was right there in front of me.

Finally, he relented. "I ate all of them. There ain't none left."

Disappointed, I went back to my room.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Fun While It Lasted...

I slammed my face into a tree today.

There I was, sitting on the ground wondering where my glasses went to, when I noticed my bike broken clean in two.

I found my glasses. They must have taken the brunt of the blow, because they were bent all out of shape.

And my face hurt.

I checked my nose. A little blood, but not too painful. I felt a dull, numb ache across my brow, on the bridge of my nose, and around my eyes. But everything was still in place.

I was lucky. All my body parts were intact. Couldn't say that about my bike.

I stood up and looked back up the steep hill I had been enjoying just moments earlier.

It sure was fun while it lasted. Unfortunately, I was going the wrong way down a one-way street when a minivan turned onto the street just ahead of me.

That's when I decided I should take the sidewalk.

But I was going way too fast. I lost control, and ended up getting up close and personal with a tree trunk. At least it had soft bark.

I'll be alright. I just may look like a raccoon for a few days.

My bike faired a lot worse than I did. I had to partially carry it, partially wheel it as best I can the mile and a half back home. I don't know if it will survive.

Take a look:

The Stan

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

An Age Old Question Answered

About a month ago, my life completely changed.

I made a monumental decision that will affect me for the rest of my life.

And it’s the sort of life-changing event that rarely happens in the life of men. Most men pretty much have their mind made up in this area long before casting their first vote... or even drinking their first beer.

In fact, most men go their entire lives without even giving such a change the fair consideration it deserves.

I’m talking about the age-old question of boxers vs. briefs.

Up until about a month ago, I was a brief man. I was firmly in the brief camp, and for good reason: the “package” stays all in one place. You always know where it is. No “adjustment” necessary.

It also makes it easier to hide erections. It’s much harder to “pitch a tent” when things are tucked away nice and tight.

But now I’m living the free and easy life. And I finally understand why so many men find it necessary to constantly “adjust” themselves.

Yes... I’ve decided to let the guys hang loose for a change.

Now, at first you may wonder why in the world I’d make such bold move at the ripe old age of 33.

Well, let me tell you.

Turns out that wearing briefs not only reduces your sperm count (something I’ve known a long time and never worried one iota about), but it reduces your testosterone level, too.

And low testosterone can be a root cause of weight gain, reduced libido, penile shrinkage, muscle atrophy... and man boobs.


So now that I know all this (and knowing is half the battle), I decided it was time to hang loose and easy for while.

No more testosterone-squelching briefs for me!

I’m liberating the guys and embracing my manhood.

Hello, world!

The Stan

Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Stan's "Before" Picture

Well... since my last post was all about my quest to lose those parts of me that jiggle, I figured I should publish my "before" picture so there will be something to compare with later on.

You know... when I'm showing off my bulging, rippling muscles with my shirt off in the classic body-builder pose.

There has to be the obligatory before and after picture to prove that my amazing new exercise plan I call "The Stan's Sand Dune Hustle" actually works!

Without the proof element, who is going to buy my exciting new exercise program?

So here it is. You can see how shockingly inflated I had become. Fortunately, I'm a bit slimmer than that at the moment. But this photo was taken before I started my exciting, revolutionary, fast-acting exercise program. (See previous post for details. Videos and workbook to be released soon.)

As you can see below, Alba has become quite inflated, too!

Until next time...

The Stan

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Stan's Sand Dune Hustle

A little over two months ago, I decided enough was enough.

I was no longer going to allow myself to balloon out of control. I mean, when little kids start saying "daaaaaamn!" as I'm walking by, then I know it's time to get my weight back under control.

I don't know what I got up to because my bathroom scale is broken. (Because the batteries are dead. Just thought I would clarify that.) But I'm betting I was brushing up against 300 lbs.

So I decided to cut all sugar from my diet, cut back on most high-glycemic foods, and focus on eating more quality protein. In addition, I would start getting my fat, jiggly ass outside and moving it around as fast as I could.

That's when I discovered a wonderful, nearly heart-attack provoking exercise regimen perfect for shedding off the pounds like yesterday's underwear.

I like to call it "The Stan's Sand Dune Hustle."

Here's the simple two step plan to implementing this amazing new exercise program...

Step One: Go to Sand Dune Park in Manhattan Beach, CA.
Step Two: Hustle your fat, lazy ass up that 45 degree slope as fast as you can.

If it takes you 30 minutes to get to the top the first time out, and you nearly have a heart-attack, just be patient. You'll soon be breezing your way up in just 10 minutes flat. Don't worry about those well-oiled shirtless slabs of meat rushing all the way to the top in less than two minutes.

This is a competition with yourself.

And believe it or not it works! I've finally worked my way up to going all the way up and down two whole times! And I've lost a solid three inches off my spare tire in the process.

I'll keep you updated on my quest to become a hunk once again. I'm tired of jiggling all over the place, and pouring myself into my desk chair. I prefer being thin and sexy.

Until next time.

The Stan

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Story of How I Got Turned On To Copywriting

Yes... I'm the worst blogger ever. I know.

So I'll make it up to you by posting my personal story about how I got into marketing and copywriting....

In 2005, I was flat-broke and punching time as a bookkeeper. I was sick of it. All I knew was I wanted to get out of this stinkin’ rat race... and for good.

Then, one day as I was surfing the net, I came across a promotion for an investment newsletter. It told me I could rake in a fortune from the oil boom... that these were halcyon days for the oil industry and I could catch a piece of the action if I just responded before it was too late!

As I read the promotion, I kept edging closer and closer to the computer screen. My eyes dilated as adrenaline surged through my veins.

I read faster... and faster... and faster... until I clicked on the “order now” button to stake my claim to my share of all those oil profits!

And that proved to be a life-changing moment for me. Not because I got rich in oil profits—I didn’t even make a dime—but because I was on “the list” to receive promotions from every financial newsletter known to man.

They came in my inbox... and through the mail. I was a prime prospect—except for not having any money!

But I read most of them, anyway. And after a while I started wising up to their methods. I remember thinking to myself...

“Damn, these guys are good!”

They know exactly what emotional hot buttons to press to get me drooling all over myself, convinced I’m about to get rich tomorrow!

Then somehow, AWAI, the American Writers & Artists Institute, decided I was a prime prospect for their Six Figure Copywriting Course. To this day, I have no idea what made them decide I was a prospect.

But their promotion worked. They knew what emotional hot buttons to press, too!

That’s when it all clicked for me. That’s when I realized I wanted to learn how to be a direct response copywriter... and have the almost magical skill of persuading through the written word.

So for the next two years, I gobbled up everything I could get my hands on related to copywriting. I spent every last dime I had on books and information products. I studied successful promotions and practiced my skills in secret...

Until it was time to test them in the real world. My first sales letter—a customer acquisition letter for my girlfriend’s makeup business—generated a 2.25% response to a cold, compiled list.

Not bad, huh? Especially when many mailers report precisely a 0.00% response rate!

Later, I wrote a sales letter for an ebook that boosted conversion rates by 812%... and through testing it exploded to 1,526%!

Now, we’re talkin’!

These and other successes—plus some failures along the way—have encouraged me to continue to study, practice, and hone my skills to keep them razor-sharp. Because I’m absolutely committed to becoming a top-notch, A-level copywriter.

One day, I want my name to be uttered in the same sentence with legends such as John Carlton, Clayton Makepeace, and Gary Bencivenga.

But in the meantime, I’m helping info-marketers, seminar promoters, and brick-and-mortar businesses get more out of their marketing dollars.

[Check out my website at]

The Stan

P.S. There's my story. This is a personal blog--not a business blog--so I'll be back to reporting juicy details of my life soon!