Thursday, 16 March 2017

A Fine Self Publishing Example - Free Download (16-17 March only)

I'm often asked how I'm able to make a full time living publishing books on Amazon. The answer in itself isn't rocket science, but there's a lot of work involved to get to the point I'm at right now. 

It's simple, but not easy!

Those that have worked with me will know that I'm a stickler for quality. I encourage people to create unique, personal and meaning books in order to grow a loyal readership. To some, that might sound difficult, but it's not nearly as tough as it sounds. 

It's simple, but not easy!

During previous FIRE Escapes I've had the pleasure of chatting about publishing to some of the attendees. I get the sense that some people want to know how I do it so they can follow a similar path, while others are just fascinated to know how it all works. 

Two attendees, M (from There's Value) and her close friend Martina, decided to take the bull by the horns and write their own book after discussing some of the finer details. Being full time mothers, the process has taken them longer than expected. They've battled through writers block and negotiated with editors but they're finally there. 

They told some of the attendees at the recent FIRE Escape that they planned on launching it soon. Some of you asked to be notified of it's release. So, here you go!

As of today and tomorrow (16-17th March) they're running their first Free Promotion on Amazon. If you want to support M and Martina, please download their book for free over the next 2 days, and share it with a friend. 

Click here to download a free copy*

I think they've done a sterling job and I wanted to share their work with you to show what's possible. As far as first attempts go, this is one of the best I've seen. 

If you're interested in trying Self Publishing, I think you could do far worse than checking out what these ladies have produced and use it as a benchmark.

I wish you both the best of luck with the promotion, and please let us know how you get on! 

*Amazon Affiliate Link from M

Thursday, 9 March 2017

FIRE Escape 6: The Aftermath

Do you know the square root of 4096?

...It's 64, which is roughly the same as the number of visits I've made to the toilet in the last 48 hours. 

You see, the FIRE Escape not only surprises its attendees with valuable information on all things related to money. You can make friends with like-minded people, and for some of us, the bathroom.

I had a fabulous weekend away in Thurlstone, which will go down as one of my favourite FIRE Escapes, but I've also walked away with a not-so-friendly stomach bug, which has had me sidelined until yesterday morning. 

It's not much fun having the world fall out of your arse over the space of 48 hours. An impending fart filled me with same amount of dread as my first self assessment tax return. Thankfully these bugs are fleeting things, and I'm pleased to announce that all is back to normal.

"Hello Friend, we meet again"

I tend to take a lot away from these weekends and I find it hard to summarise in a Blog post. It feels like I'm not doing it full service. Whether that's to do with my writing ability or the power of experiencing it in person, I'm not sure....

I just want to take this opportunity to thank everyone that came along. I enjoyed interacting with each and every one of you. I took something from all of my interactions, and here some of my key takeaways.  

If you joined us for the weekend, please leave your takeaways in the comments below. I'd love to know what you picked up too!

First Timers and Regulars

One thing I like about the FIRE Escape meetings is having a nice blend of First Timers and Regulars. Each year we have a 50:50 split of newbies and regulars and I hope it continues to stay that way. In fact this weekend had slightly more newbies. 

The First Timers offer new ideas and perspectives to earning or saving money, which always excites me. I love to find out why people decided to join us for the weekend, what people do for a living, or what they specialise in. It's also nice to meet another person that's interested in the same stuff as me. I'm so used to having no-one give a shit about investing, budgeting or making money online that it makes a nice surprise to have someone proactively discuss these very topics. 

The substantial ratio of First Timers also make it easier for fellow First Timers. It's a bit weird arriving at a house full of strangers, wondering what the hell is in store for the next couple of days. 

"Will it be safe?" 
"Will they make me do anything strange?"

Well, we're not at liberty to tell to - due to our oath - so you'll have to join us to find out won't you.... Muuuhaaahaaa (attempted evil laugh)

The regulars are of course pivotal to the experience. They're the gel that help connect the group together. It's great to see old friends, and hear what they've been up to since the last meet up. You bring up old jokes, catch up, and generally take relationships on to new levels. 

I'm not sure what other regulars think, but I find it motivating to talk about the progress I've made since the last meet up (as people inevitably ask) and I leave with an underlying desire to do x, y, and z before the next one and stand by my commitments. 

Moving forward I'd like to encourage and preserve this blend if possible. I know it's largely out of my hands, but I think it's important to encourage both First Timers and Regulars to keep coming as the group get so much from it.

Frugal People Appreciate Quality

The accommodation was by far the highest standard we've had for a FIRE Escape before. The feedback was unanimous, the cottage was in near-perfect condition and it was a pleasure to stay in. I'm not sure I'm going to be able to match this quality every time, but if I can find a similar location for a reasonable price, I will.

The games room (with ping pong and pool table) went down well on first sight. As well as the separate break out room, but I'm not sure how much value these extras added to the weekend. I know Ed had a particularly hard time on the pool table on Saturday afternoon, but that was more down to my superiority than than the facility ;-) (I couldn't help myself Ed!) 

Is there anything you'd like to have at the accommodation in future FIRE Escapes? 

Get More Rooms

I thought I'd preempt a couple of points that came up prior to the weekend. This particular one was raised by several people. 

In future FIRE Escapes I'll try to book a location that has around 8-12 rooms. A lot of people didn't end up coming, or spent more than they would have liked due to me not doing so. 

I just want to apologise to everyone for that!

I was simply going off the response I had in January. I was concerned that it might only be me and Lou in the end. 

It's clear that over the years we've been doing them that although we've had some people come and go, the interest has increased overall. I think with enough notice of the date and location we could fill 8+ rooms without too much trouble, based on FE 6. 

I'll do my best to find a central England location with a higher number of rooms to accommodate this growing desire. 

One thing that's previously delayed or hindered the process is my next point....

The Ever-Changing Price

I pay for the accommodation out of my own pocket, and seek to get my return back to zero from all of the attendees. The weekend isn't about making money for me. In fact I actually lose out from each weekend, but I don't mind. 

I've want to make it as cost effective as possible for the people committing to stopping in the accommodation by giving donations back to them - after they've initially paid me - to incentivise people to commit to stopping over, and making the weekend viable. 

The downside to this method reared it's head this weekend as multiple people - who wanted to stop over - couldn't because the rooms were already taken. So, they not only had to pay for single accommodation nearby. They also 'voluntarily contributed' some money to me, which I then passed back to the guests stopping in the house. This meant that some people were paying over £100 for 2 nights whilst having to sort out transport too and from the location each day, whilst the house guests were paying just less than £60 for the same duration, and not having to leave the house. This wasn't right, and it was my fault!

Once again, I'm sorry for the way this turned out. By trying to help, I ended up pissing some people off. 

In future, I've decided to simplify this process and make it fairer for everyone. 

Once I've selected the location, I'll notify everyone of the price and date. I'll break down the price for stopping 1 and 2 nights (on location), and a separate rate for day guests. If there's an oversupply of money donated by people not stopping over, I'm not going to divide it all down and give it back to house guests. I'm going to add that money to my charitable fund instead. 

The way I see it, by giving money back to the people stopping in the house, it creates the possibility of conflict. By keeping the money myself, it could put people off coming for fear of "he's only doing it to make money", but by giving the excess money to charity at least an external good cause is benefitting from it, which I think is less of a grind than it going to other attendees. 

I won't be adjusting the rate after it goes live - unless there's a dramatic fall in numbers. Instead, I'll stick to the proposed rate and pass the excess cash onto charity. 

What do you think?

Good idea?

Am I missing anything?

Finding a Mentor

This isn't a ground breaking message, but I think it gets largely overlooked by many. 'A' from Scotland was a big advocate to this approach when it comes to learning anything from scratch. She implemented it with her eBay business, Dividend Investing and even Whisky Investing (more on that later...).

Why not save time, money and effort and find out what successful people do and how you can do the same. Modelling success is such a basic concept that most people are familiar with but so many of us forget about it's impact.

I'm guilty of working things out myself, and I've missed this important step as a result. Now that I'm working with a coach to help me get my course out there I'm seeing the benefits of this approach first hand. I wish I'd taken the step earlier. 

Thank you for the useful reminder 'A'. 

Success on Youtube

Cora & Helen from 'The Mini Millionaire' have a successful Youtube channel, which you can find HERE. In fact I introduced one of the First Time attendees (Ed) to Cora who replied not with the standard "Hello" or "I'm Ed", but pointed at her and said "You've got a Youtube channel". Cora said that during their Reselling tour of the North, she also had someone call her name from across the street, so their channel is clearly having an impact. 

When I asked her what her secret to success was she said that it was largely down to doing daily Vlogs. Rather than mince around with irregular videos like me, Cora & Helen have committed to putting out a video everyday, which is some undertaking. 

They've also invested in a nice camera and even a drone to help improve the quality of their footage. I plan on buying a decent camera and develop my editing skills to improve the viewing experience for my subscribers. 

I'm not sure where I'm going to take Youtube for now, but I'm enjoying the journey. As long as I continue to make videos, I want to be progressing what I produce. 

Are there any videos you'd like me to film?

Do any advice from what you've seen so far?

(don't say find a mentor!)

Whisky Investing

This topic was probably the biggest surprise I took from the weekend. 'A' was quizzed about it on numerous occasions over the course of her stay. I think I might have been the first. When asked about what she invests in, she replied almost nonchalantly with "dividend growth stocks, eBay, whisky.....".
"Whisky. What to drink or to make money?"
As an avid whisky drinking fan, I was hoping for a bit of both, but 'A' is teetotal so it was solely the latter. 
'A' went on to explain how she got into it and how it all works. Like any type of investing, it's not fool-proof and the returns aren't guaranteed but the topic certainly interested me. 

In fact 'A' hadn't technically made any money from this strategy because she hasn't sold any stock. But she can see that the sale prices for her 'Whiskfolio' that there's good money in. 

Some whiskys are released with a limited number - let's say 5,000 bottles. Therefore, there's never going to be more than 5,000 bottles, only less. Some of the buyers will be investors, like 'A'. While others will be drinkers, like me. Each successive bottle that's drunk makes that particular brand more rare. When an item is scarce, the demand 'usually' increases for fear of missing out. That's why Lou would be lost without me.... I'm just too darn rare! ;-)

'A' explained that in some cases, distilleries that have closed down - like Port Ellen or Macallan - yield massive ROI's because of their solid reputation and ever decreasing numbers. It's a classic case of supply and demand. 

Off the back of the weekend, I've been in touch with 'A' and I've decided to dabble in a bit of Whisky Investing myself. Lou and I purchased 2 x bottles each off the back of her suggestions.  

I just want to add, I know the risks I'm taking on and can afford the loses. 'A' was very cautious about offering advice in fear we would hold her accountable, but I reassured her I would take full responsibility for the increase in price, and would only blame her if it didn't work out. 

Joking aside, I see Whisky Investing as a bit of fun as a whisky drinker, and if it turns out to make us a bit of money on the side then great, but if not, I'll drown my sorrows in the Whiskfolio! (Do you think the term will catch on?)

If you guys are interested in the details, drop me a note in the comments below and I'll do a separate post/video on it. 

We received our first two bottles in the post today. The Whiskfolio begins....

The Game of Investing

Before I explain this point, I just want to clarify that I do take investing seriously. It's enabled me to become Financially Independent and I plan on continuing to invest wisely in the future. 

I personally choose to invest in individual stocks over funds, when many people advocate sticking to index investing, including the great Warren Buffett. This decision is due to the higher income I receive (5+% yield, rather than 1-3%), the one off cost for life rather than an ongoing annual charge, and the potential to beat the performance of index trackers by selecting specific, higher performing stocks. But there's another reason, and one that I don't hear from many people....

I enjoy it!

I know that Vanguard's Life Strategy 80% Equity fund is a solid investment. It just doesn't interest me as much as shares do. 

I'm not judging anyone for buying it. In fact, I have that very fund in my ISA and SIPP. I've recommended it as the sole investment option for 4 members of my family and at least 3 friends and countless people I don't care about. I just enjoy the process of selecting stocks and testing myself against the market, which leads me onto my main point....

A couple of the attendees no longer need to invest money into shares or funds, yet they continue to grow and develop their portfolio. Why? 

Over the weekend I could see that they did it for the same reason I've just explained.... They enjoy the process

We had one First Timer, John, who I'm sure won't mind me saying, was 87 years old. That officially makes him the eldest attendee to date. Congratulations John!

He told me that he still ponders over where to distribute his capital. I somewhat rudely asked him "John, seeing you've been retired for many, many years now, what's your motivation or goal to continue making future investments and growth?"

He took a few moments to contemplate the question and replied "It's become a habit and I enjoy it".

Although I don't know for sure, I think I'm going to be the same as John. For example, I could just not work another day in my life today and start living on my investment income, but (a) That might leave me a little short if the stock market tanks (b) I'd like to live a lifestyle with more disposable income, thus increases my options and (c) It wouldn't be much fun! 

When I start taking money from my portfolio, I'll do so in an incremental way. So if I were getting £1,000 per month for example. I don't see myself taking the full allocation. Instead, I might take out 50-75%, and put the rest back in to future growth. 

I've formed a habit of living on less than I earn, and I don't see that being easy to break, nor would I want to. 

I'm interested to get your thoughts on this topic. 

  • What are your plans when your investments meet your living expenses? 
  • Do you plan on taking it all out?
  • Will you withdraw it as soon as you hit FI?
  • Or do you want it to reach a higher threshold? 

The Release of Innovative Self Publishing

Possibly the second biggest surprise I took from the weekend was the anticipation people had for me releasing my course - Innovative Self Publishing

I've received emails from people saying they're looking forward to it, but it felt different having people tell you in person. 

It wasn't anything dramatic like someone putting their life on hold solely for the course, but I got a sense that a lot of people were excited about its release. And some were very eager to start Self Publishing and wanted to know specifically when it would be out. 

Now, they might have been 'blowing smoke up my ass', which might explain the following 48 hours, but I got a sense that people were genuinely keen. 

This sense of responsibility struck a cord with me. This is why I've chosen to create the damn thing in the first place. The easy thing to do would be to keep my knowledge, experience and tactics to myself and grow my wealth. And I would be lying if I said it hadn't crossed my mind! 

Increasing my income from £6,000 to £12,000 per month would be cool, but I don't see it improving my happiness or lifestyle in any dramatic way. But having someone say to me "Your course changed my life forever. I'm now FI because of you" would literally make my world. I would happily make friends with the toilet for a month to have that experience! I don't think money could rival that feeling of satisfaction for me. 

I will continue to work on my course each day and do my best to get Module 2 out to the Founding Members as soon as I can. I hope I can achieve my goal of helping other people quit their jobs and be a part in solving their 'money problem'. 

I struggle with allowing the demands (or simple requests) from others prioritise my development. For example, I'm aware it's Thursday, which is 4 whole days after the FIRE Escape, and I haven't completed my summary. It feels like I'm late. I have emails which I haven't responded to, which need more than a couple of sentences, perhaps even 15 minutes or so of my time. It feels like I'm late. It's the 9th March and I haven't filmed my Feb Goal update video for Youtube. I feel late. I eat some toast and 20 minutes later my stomach grumbles. "I need the toilet" but it's too late! 

You get the picture.

The problem I encounter is that the course has 'never been', so it doesn't ever feel late, which I'm aware might not make any sense. This weekend however made me realise that every day that passes is late for someone. I could see it in their eyes. 

Thank you to everyone that helped put that pressure on me during the weekend. I got a boost of confidence that my course matters and energy from hearing it in person. 

And I'd like to thank everyone in general for coming along and making the weekend so great. I got the sense that a lot of people enjoyed themselves and if they didn't, Lou and I certainly did!

Until next time....

PS. Please leave any comments you had from the weekend, or suggestions on how to improve it for future!

PPS. Weenie correctly pointed out that the spelling for Scotch Whisky is without the 'e'. I've edited the post above accordingly. 

Monday, 27 February 2017

FIRE Escape 6: Weavers Cottage - What's next?

FIRE Escape 6: Weaver's Cottage

We're now just 4 sleeps away from the 6th FIRE Escape at Weaver's Cottage. The excitement is building.... The anticipation is palpable.... and Thurlstone's Financial IQ is about to go through the roof! 

Finding FIRE

The address is Weaver's Cottage, Leapings Lane, Thurlstone, Sheffield, South Yorkshire, S36 9QP - BUT don't use this postcode!

The owner suggested using S36 9RB instead, which is for Rock Side Road. There are two Leapings Lane in Thurlstone, and the addresses postcode will take you to the wrong one. 

Once on Rock Side Road, which is south of the River Don, go to the top of the hill. You'll come to a fork in the road. Take the right option (has a sign for a dead end) which is the Leapings Lane we're looking for. Weavers Cottage is the 2nd house on the left. This spot is represented by a star in the map below. 

The red cross is the incorrect location you get if you search for it on google.

Contact Details

If you don't have it already, please email me and request my mobile number. If you have any problems, I'll hopefully be able to direct you back on course. 

The cottage has wifi, so if the phone reception is poor, you can contact me via email. 


Arrival is from 3.00pm on Friday. 

I'll be arriving at this time (traffic permitting) so please don't come too much earlier or you'll be sat outside waiting. 

Departure is 10.00am on Sunday.

If you're not stopping at the cottage, you probably won't be missing much on the Sunday morning. People tend to get up, have breakfast and make their way home. 


It's a self catered accommodation, so we just need to bring our own food. There will be sugar, tea, coffee, salt pepper and oils, but that's about it. Lou and I will bring extras just in case. We'll also buy a 4 pint of milk, loaf of bread and butter to cover some of the basics. 

Please bring with you any food that you need for the weekend. 

Lou and I will be cooking a Chicken Pie on Friday night (well, more Lou and less me in reality). It contains chicken, mushroom, leek, cream and filo pastry. Everyone is welcome to it. We understand that not everyone will want or be able to eat it due to dietary reasons. Don't worry, zero offense taken. 

If your also interested in cooking a meal for everyone or if you plan on bringing anything in bulk, please leave a comment below. 

There's a Tesco Supermarket within minutes of the cottage - Market Lane, Penistone, Sheffield S36 6TS. So, we can plan meals or chip in towards anything we're short of. 

How much does it cost?

The accommodation cost me £548 for the 2 nights. It's a non-profit weekend, so I pass back any donations onto the people that are stopping at the location. 

Currently, that's £68.50 for the 8 x people stopping at the Cottage. Fortunately, it'll end up being slightly less than that due to people using alternative accommodation or attending as day guests, but I'm not sure what it is yet....

If you're not stopping at the Cottage, but plan on joining us for part or all of the weekend, could you please email me with the following information?

1) What day & time are you arriving? 
2) What day & time are your departing?
3) Who's attending with you?
4) Your suggested donation amount. 

We've previously accepted £20-£30 donations for day guests. Again, if you're paying for 2 nights accommodation elsewhere, which happens to be more than £68.50, let me know. We'll come to a reasonable agreement. 

The aim is to find the right balance between having more people attend & not having the 'Cottage-Stoppers' feel short changed (as they make the weekend possible!). 

If you're stopping at the cottage, I'll confirm the amount and request payment once I've received donations from 'non-stopper-overs'. I would prefer to receive the payment prior to the weekend, and via Bank Transfer (if possible). 

Anything else?

If I've missed anything, or you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below. 

See you all very soon!

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

HDTV 004: Dog Poo | Injuries | Course Testing

In this video, I share some of my ups and downs over the last couple of days. 

I present a behind-the-scenes look at one of my course lessons, and update you on some upcoming testing for my course. 

My Vlogging is still in its infancy, so please let me know what you think. Are they entertaining? Interesting? Pointless? 

Saturday, 4 February 2017

Monthly Goal Update: January 2017

I've committed to tracking the progress of my goals on a monthly basis. These posts have been inconsistent in previous years, so I plan on recording 12 of these for 2017. 

I record these videos to keep myself accountable and show others how I've gone from A to B. I hope in time, I can help to inspire people to become accountable for their goals too.

Dr. Gail Matthews conducted a study that found you're 39.5% more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down. She also found that if you send progress reports to others - friends, mentors, coaches, accountability partners etc. you were 76.7% more likely to achieve those goals. 

Writing them down significantly weighs the odds of success in your favour, but providing regular updates almost doubles the chances of success. 

I have 9 Goals for 2017. They're spread across different areas of my life. Each month I record an update video charting my progress. 

Let's get to it!

1. I will easily create and launch an online course by 31st December 2017.

This is my priority goal for the year. If I fail all others and achieve this, I'll be delighted!
I'm continuing to make progress on a daily basis on this one. At the moment I'm writing up lesson objectives and making sure the whole thing flows. Hopefully in the net 10-14 days, I'll finish that job. I plan on recording and uploading Module 1 onto the website to see how it all works. 

I asked for testers, and they came! I've agreed to offer lifetime membership to 20 people who put their names forward. Now I just need to make the course. Having people wait for it is reassuring and helps to put a bit of the right type of pressure on me to keep going. 

So far so good on this goal!

2. I will easily set up a charitable fund, promote it on my Blog, and donate 10% of my course profits to ‘Building Schools For Africa’ by 31st December 2017.

I wouldn't say I have a fund as such. I have a savings account where I'm storing the money. At the end of this month the total stands at £1,069. Just the £19,000 to go! :-)

I've had two people reach out and offer donations which is awesome. I'm currently working on setting up a more official receipt / donation slip to provide to people who wish to donate. Currently, it's just a case of sending me money. I'd like it to be a little more formal, as it involves people's money. 

I've set up a page on this very blog, I've written a post about the fund, and I just need to release the course in order to fund it. 

I'll continue to put my contribution allocation into this fund each month, so we've achieve this target by people buying my course, and by funding it myself. 

Another positive start for this goal. 

3. My Investment portfolio will easily pay me £6,000 (£500 per month) in income in 2017.

I want to earn enough passive income from investments (that require no work), that cover my living expenses. Now that we're mortgage free, Lou and I live on around £300-£400 per month. I would like to earn over £500 per month by the end of the year to more than cover the basic living expenses. 

This income does not include money I make from Kindle - which is also mostly passive. 

For Jan I earned £166.26 in Dividends and £184 from Saving Stream and MoneyThing, producing a combined total of £350.26. This is a solid start. By looking ahead, I should expect this to be one of my lower months for the year. 

I don't use any of this income currently. It goes right back into buying more assets, and I continue to put more money into investments each month. 

Ultimately, I would like to create a large passive income source of around £2,000 to £4,000 per month for just sitting on my arse. This total would cover a more than comfortable living expense with fun thrown in. 

I plan on living on my kindle income (and other ventures) for as long as possible to allow my passive income stream to grow to a considerable level. 

Summary - Although I'm behind on target, it's forecast as a lower paying month, so I still remain confident that I can achieve this goal by December. 

4. I will easily create and launch my new Blog with 500 email subscribers by 31st December 2017.

I'm eager to get cracking with this one, but I'm purposely holding myself back until I complete my course. I've bought the URL and I hope to get it up and running in 3-4 months. 

5. I will easily read or listen to 16 books by 31st December 2017.

I'm on track with this one so far. I've read one book. Listened to another. I'm about to finish reading a third in the next few days. 

I've thoroughly enjoyed every book I've read in 2017, and I'm enjoying my current reads. I'd happily recommend all of them. 

Completed Books:
1. ‘Screw it, let’s do it’ by Richard Branson. 
2. 'Influence' by Robert Cialdini

Currently Reading/Listening to:
3. 'The Checklist Manifesto' by Atul Gawande
4. 'Tools of Titans' by Timothy Ferriss
5. 'The Power of Habit' by Charles Duhigg

Ahead of schedule on this one. 

6. Lou and I will easily have at least one ‘date night’ a month for the whole of 2017. (12 ‘date nights' in total) 1. Jan – The Golden Ball. 

One month, one date. We went to 'The Golden Ball' a couple of weeks ago. It's a nice country pub. We've passed it a couple of times and we both decided we'd like to check it out. So we did!

This is an easy goal to achieve, whilst being an easy one to overlook. It's important for Lou and I to take time out for each other. We think this is the least we can do for each other. 

So far so good on this goal.

7. I will easily attend 3 x different clubs/classes in Cambridge area by 31st March 2017.

I set this goal, with a limited timeframe, to make me get out there and meet people. I have limited friends in the area, and I hope by putting myself out there I'll meet like-minded people. 

I've been attending Improv lessons in Cambridge, which are highly entertaining. I'd love to film them, but I can't for confidentiality reasons. 

I've booked and paid for an acrobatics and juggling course in March (with Lou). I haven't attended it yet, but I just need to turn up. I'm excited about this one!

Lou and I signed up to a gym, which I haven't done in years. We've committed to attending every morning to keep fit, spend more time together, and hopefully meet people. 

I've almost achieved this one, but I'd like to push the boat out and join more clubs to continue meeting people. Once my rib is back to rights I'll start training in MMA / BJJ which I've always wanted to try. 

8. I will easily record 52 new Youtube videos and have 2,000 Youtube subscribers by 31st December 2017. 

You've probably noticed a lot more activity than normal on this platform. I'm really enjoying Youtube, and I plan on growing my channel and developing skills along the way. 

For this actual video I started doing some editing, adding images/text and even music (which I'm not too sure about!). I had fun putting it together, and I look forward to experimenting more with my Youtube production. In order to get 2,000 subscribers, I need to put out fresh content that interests and entertains people. Please keep providing feedback on what you'd like me to film and what you think. It means a lot!

I released 5 videos in January, and 2 in February so far. This puts me slightly ahead of schedule. I'm not getting too carried away as my record would show that I lack consistency in this area. 

My subscribers are now up to 281. So I have a LOOOONNNGGG way to go yet. 

I will say once again that I'm enjoying the production of videos far more than I ever had. I'm actually looking forward to creating more content. 

9. I will easily complete 26 x bi-weekly reviews to track my progress in 2017. Jan - 2

I set myself 26 instead of 52 to allow myself chance to make up for missed sessions. If I have early starts on Saturday or I stop away for the weekend I tend to forget about them. Giving myself a week to 'catch-up' so-to-speak is helping to keep me motivated. 

So far, I've done 5 in January, so my plan is working out. 


I'm encouraged by my start to the year, but there's a long way to go yet, so I'm not getting too excited. As I mentioned above, I have a track record of going through these phases. I just hope that my phases increase in length, and the work I do when I'm in 'the zone' is enough to get me there. Only time will tell. 

A quick tap on the back for me, and that'll do. Time to get back to work and prove that I can produce positive results on a consistent basis. 

How about you?

Now we're 5 weeks into the year, how's it gone for you so far. 

Are you on track?

Are you already losing motivation?

Or, are you smashing it out of the park?

Either way, let me know how things are going for you in the comments below. 

Have a fabulous Feb!

Music for Youtube video:
Moments by Sappheiros
Creative Commons — Attribution 3.0 Unported— CC BY 3.0
Music provided by Music for Creators

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

FIRE Escape 6: Upgrading to bigger location??

In HDTV 002, I said that I was checking with the owner of Weaver Cottage to see if she would allow more people to stop over (above the listed 8) on sofa's etc. She wasn't sure if it was allowed, but she said she would check. 

She said she owns another property that is fairly close that can sleep 15 people if I was interested. It wasn't scheduled to be sold on 3-5th March, so she was going to see how much it would cost for the weekend. 

Anyways, I spoke to her this morning and she said that by having anyone stop overnight - above the 8 people - it would invalidate her insurance policy, so unfortunately that's not an option.

She also confirmed that despite her enthusiasm for the second property, she forgot that the stairs won't be fitted into it in time for the weekend, so that's no longer an option either. 

Who's been allocated rooms at Weaver Cottage?

Room 1: Huw and Lou
Room 2: Cora and Helen
Room 3: Eva and Valerie
Room 4: M & Martina 

What about the rest of us?

I take full responsibility for not renting a bigger location. It's quite difficult to know in advance how many people would be interested. In hindsight, I should have gone for 6-10 rooms, and I will do in future. 

I'm sorry to everyone else that has asked to stop over, but there's no room at the inn. 

Hopefully, there's enough time for you to book alternative accommodation near to the cottage. 

RE DONATION: If you book alternative accommodation, let me know how much your accommodation is and we'll review the donation amount. I don't want anyone paying more than they have to, and I'd like everyone to attend. 

If you're stopping in the cottage, it's going to be around £65 each for the 2 nights. I'm not going to ask for the money yet, as we're likely to have people stopping by and donating. Once I have a better idea of how many people will be attending, I'll let you know the amount. 

One again, I'm SO SORRY to everyone that had hopes of stopping over. I commit to renting more rooms next time around, I promise!

Any questions?

If I've missed anything, please leave a comment below and I'll answer it as soon as I can. 

Have a great day!

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

HDTV 002: New Morning Routine | FIRE Escape upgrade | Chocolate Protein Porridge

In this 'day in the life' video I talk about my new morning routine, how my course is developing, possibilities for a FIRE Escape upgrade and my chocolate protein porridge recipe. 

This is my second attempt at Vlogging. I'm keen to do more of these, so please let me know what you think of it. 

Are there are things in particular that you would like to see me do?

Are there are things you're bored / not interested in?

Please Subscribe to the channel if you haven't already. The more people that subscribe and 'like' my videos, the more Youtube will 'suggest' my videos to others. 

Have a great day!