Now here’s a deal! Anyone who wants a free e-book of the new US edition of Findependence Day — or three books by other authors — can do so at a “Digital Book Signing” next Thursday. Just click here to register, then join us Thursday, July 18th at 3:30 pm EST. I’ll be one of four authors featured. Everyone who signs in will be emailed a BookStub [see illustration] signed by me (or other authors), immediately following the event.
For those for whom the concept of a digital book signing may be novel — it was to me as well! — click here for a short introduction to the concept or this 2011 New York Times article, Would you sign my Kindle?
In the case of the US edition of Findependence Day, readers who have already bought the hard-copy Canadian edition can now get the e-book at no extra cost. The story is much the same as the original but it’s all set in the United States, the financial terms are all American, there’s a new glossary and it includes end-of-chapter summaries of the key financial concepts learned. Apart from the Kindle, you can get the book on the Nook, iPad and most other popular e-book formats, or indeed in a format readable on laptop or desktop computers.
Of course, you don’t need to have previously bought the book to take advantage of this short window: those who have happened on this web site and were curious can now satisfy their curiosity without spending one thin dime: Canadian or American! Guerrilla frugality at its finest — hoist by my own petard!
The other three authors and their featured books are:
L.D. Nascimento; The Curse of The Golden City and The Path to the Fallen Stars
Andrew Bernstein; California Slim
Daryl Edwards, The Guardian Corps and Book One—The Argent
Obviously, we all hope to create a bit of word-of-mouth for our respective books and ultimately to stimulate actual sales. In the case of Findependence Day I’d encourage anyone who does download the book and enjoys it to post a short review at Amazon.com, which is one of the main ways the book can be purchased (whether Kindle, paperback or hardcover). Here is a sample of half a dozen recent mini-reviews of the new edition at Amazon (click on Newest reviews first).
Recent Reviews of US edition of Findependence Day
Here is a link to several other recent reviews that appeared in and around the American Independence Day. This is a link to the Reviews tab elsewhere on this site: they appear four lines down and are grouped together to distinguish them from older reviews of the first edition.
Finally, below is the summary of key concepts covered in Chapter 4 (see earlier blog posts for the first three; others will be posted over the coming weeks):
Chapter 4: Baby You’re a Rich Man
The concept of Human Capital
• A “Frooger” is a Frugality Guerrilla.
• Froogers make frugality a lifetime habit: first to eliminate debt; later to build wealth.
• Part of being frugal entails tracking expenses and making a budget.
• If your employer has a pension plan, you’d be wise not to pass up the “free money.”
• Teachers and government workers like Sheena enjoy “Cadillac” Defined Benefit (DB) pension plans where you know exactly how much you’ll receive in retirement.
• Younger tech firms like Jamie’s employer are more likely to offer 401(k) retirement plans that go up or down with the stock and bond markets.
• Once you’re free of all consumer debt, employees should start an IRA or Individual Retirement Account. Uncle Sam gives you a generous tax break as an incentive – as long as you’re not also covered by an employer-sponsored retirement plan like a 401(k) or 403(b).
• You can save $5,500 a year in an IRA, or $6,500 if you’re over 50.
• You’re richer than you think means young people are rich in “human capital” – millions in future earning potential.
• To get diversified long-term growth in the stock market, consider exchange-traded funds (ETFs) or index mutual funds.
• ETFs and index funds are cheaper than most mutual funds because they track broad stock market indexes like the S&P500.
If you already happen to own the original print edition of Findependence Day (now called the Canadian edition), is there any reason to also buy the new e-book edition of the just-published US edition? Perhaps there is, considering that at $3.99 or less for all but the Kindle edition, the e-books are only a quarter of the price of print editions.
The two main features in the e-book that are new are the glossary at the end, and the end-of-chapter summaries of what Jamie and Sheena learned. The latter may be useful for those who have already read the story and now just want to be reminded of the basic principles of financial literacy covered.
For example, you can view the summary after Chapter 1 by clicking the sneak preview of the Amazon Kindle version here. (Amazon charges US$7.63 for it). For convenience, I’ve reposted that page below. Most of the bullet points apply to either edition, although some are focused on US-specific financial content like IRAs or Roth plans. This isn’t the case for the excerpt below, though. At some point, I will likely do an all-Canadian ebook edition but until then, readers of the original book may still find the US ebook useful.
There are also some subtle differences most wouldn’t notice unless you compared the editions side by each. The original was finished just as the financial crisis was hitting, while the new edition benefits from the insights investors have gained since 2008. There are minor changes in the technology devices: in the original, Jamie has a cell phone, in the new one, it’s an iPhone and there are more references to social media in the subplot about Jamie’s troubles with his business partner. Some names and places have been changed but the story itself and the financial lessons imparted remain pretty much the same.
Kindle, Nook, iPad & other formats
If you want the Kindle version, access the Amazon.com link shown under the Buy American edition button. For the Nook e-book, access the Barnes & Noble link under the same button or click here. For most other e-book formats, go to the Trafford.com site here, select the e-book edition and you’ll get a list of formats from which to choose.
What Jamie & Sheena learned this chapter (Chapter 1):
• You can’t start building wealth until you’ve eliminated debt.
• To save, you must stop spending.
• To stop spending, you must embrace “guerrilla frugality” and be willing to make small sacrifices.
• The foundation of Financial Independence is a paid-for home.
• Findependence Day is simply a contraction of Financial Independence Day.
• The key to manifesting your Findependence Day is to pick an actual date in the future and visualize it happening.
• To reinforce the idea that saving is more important than spending, take to heart the motto “Freedom, Not Stuff!”
The official news release announcing the new US edition of Findependence Day has just gone up on PR Web. Click here to view. Since the publisher does not as a matter of course send out review copies to the media, any member of the press interested in reviewing the book needs to contact the publisher to formally request a copy.
The contact for this is at the top right hand of the release linked above: Marketing Services, Trafford Publishing, 888-232-4444. There’s also an email request form there. If you tried and found the process unwieldy, drop me an email at email@example.com and I’ll try to expedite the request.
Initially, you can get the new book in paperback or hardcover form from the three sources listed in the link below:
These include Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble and the publisher, Trafford.com. The e-book is not yet out but will cost just under $4 when ready, hopefully a week or two from now.
Here are the key differences from the first (2008) edition, which was originally a North American edition but which I now call the Canadian edition:
1.) Brand new cover and back cover, actually closer to the original concept I had to illustrate Findependence Day.
2.) Completely Americanized, with all Canadian financial content removed and plenty of new material on American IRAs, Roth plans, Social Security and so on.
3.) Reset entirely in the United States: primarily Chicago, Boston, New York and Florida
4.) The technology subplot now features a Twitter-like fictional “Chirper” rather than the discussion forum in the original (Twitter had only just launched when the first edition came out)
5.) End-of-chapter summaries of what Jamie and Sheena learned. This does break the “fictive dream,” but is more useful for those more interested in the financial literacy content than the story, and helpful in recapping the lessons learned.
6.) New glossary of terms.
While this site was only launched in early September, this week we’ve made several changes, hopefully all for the better.
At the bottom right corner you can now see rolling feeds from my Twitter and Facebook accounts. This is in addition to the latest columns I write at the Financial Post and current entries at the Wealthy Boomer blog, which is housed at FinancialPost.com.
While we’ve not yet added feeds from the other two social media I participate in, you can also find me at Linked In and Google Plus (which I described here).
Cosmetically, we’ve added a bigger more visible button for those who want to order the book via PayPal. We’ve added some links under the Reviews & Media tab, including a fabulous new endorsement from none other than the Wealthy Barber himself: David Chilton.
We’ve also revised and expanded the entry describing the book: never easy in this hybrid category of financial primer/ fictional novel. (yes, the “financial novel” genre pioneered by the same David Chilton but see this entry for how Findependence Day has pushed the envelope on this genre.)
For those who have enjoyed the book but have trouble summarizing it to friends you think may be interested, my shorthand description is “a financial love story.” That’s how it’s described in one set of targeted Facebook ads that are currently running.
Findependence Day and Financial Literacy
With Financial Literacy Month coming up and then Christmas, I’d hope those who have enjoyed the book will spread the word. Tell friends, neighbours and even local libraries about this unique book that helps raise the financial literacy of young people who are just entering the workforce and starting to form their own families.
Cartons of 36 are available at greatly reduced prices and you’d be surprised at who are buying entire cases: NOT the giants of the financial industry but everyday working people and parents. One dentist bought a case for his patients in British Columbia. Real estate agents are buying them, credit counselling groups, even business people from church.
Of course, the full-carton deal is also popular with individual fee-only and fee-based financial advisors: those I naturally consider the “good guys.” (and gals: the first to buy a case was a top-knotch Oakville advisor I first “met” on Twitter!) With Christmas coming, I’d remind financial professionals that if purchased in quantity, the book makes a less-costly client gift than a box of chocolates but will be timelier and longer-lasting.
U.S. e-book edition coming
One exciting development is that Findependence Day will soon be available as an e-book or tablet edition in a brand new U.S. edition. For now, the existing North American edition will be available only in the “dead-tree” edition sold on this site. As those who have read it know, the original edition provides both U.S. and Canadian financial content and is set in both countries. The new e-book is set only in the U.S. and provides a lot more information about IRAs, Roth plans, Social Security and other topics.
In response to reader feedback, the new edition will also feature a glossary and an end-of-chapter summary of what Jamie and Sheena learned. I have mixed feelings about this. I didn’t go that route initially because I didn’t want to break the “fictive dream.” On the other hand, since this book IS primarily a tool for raising financial literacy, once you’ve read it it’s useful to have a chapter summary at the end in straight prose.
There will be a few other surprises, so stay tuned. Remember, while I may only update this particular blog twice a week or so, the site as a whole is constantly changing because of the continual new content from my day job and social media activity.
As they say on 680 News radio, “the news is constantly changing, so check back three, four, five times a day.” Just kidding but hopefully there’s enough here to merit a bookmark and a look once or twice a week.
See you next time!
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