20% of the Trend

by | Jan 16, 2013 | Archives

20% of a trend… if you get in early… brings a lot of success so about every 15 years, Merri and I make a huge shift in our main focus… like we have in the past three years.

However when you get 80%… wow!

At first,  we found it odd that our Smalltown USA focus had become such a dominant part of our business.   For over 40 years our business had focused on teaching readers how to be global and for 15 years our Ecuador Living site had taken up most of our time.

We were really settled in Ecuador… had been there off and on for 15+ years… had this 962 acre hacienda… a hotel… over a dozen rentals, penthouse on the beach….


Front yard at Hacienda Rosaspamba.

Then three years ago events led us onto an entirely new path…. back in the USA.

“What’s up now?” I thought… “this is illogical”.   However we did not stop heading a new direction.   We have made small fortunes again and again by ignoring logic and following our hearts instead.

Once we bought Jyske bank shares based on this hunch.  We quadrupled our money in a short time.

We bought our Ecuador hotel on a hunch.  We bought a block of Ecuador condos after exchanging a 15 second glance.  Again and again we have earned hundreds of thousands of dollars based on “illogical” feelings rather than linear thoughts.

How typical!  Our Ecuador business was absolutely booming.  Our hotel was fully booked again and again. We were swamped with Ecuador business… lucky in an otherwise slow economy.  Our Ecuador real estate  investments had appreciated a lot… while property prices in the US had tumbled.

Ecuador business was pouring in and yet we received a message to expand our attention on Smalltown USA.

Let me outline the crazy illogical reason why.

First, we were in Florida visiting our daughter and grandson for a Christmas celebration.   I saw that Florida real estate prices were outstanding bargains…maybe even better than in Ecuador.  We were so impressed with the Florida real estate value that we hired our daughter, Cheri, part time to take a look.

But that would not have been enough.   We are early in – early out people but Ecuador’s cost of living was still so much lower… life so much simpler… business was so good and there is still so much growth potential in Ecuador.

Then came the chain of illogical events that we followed.  We know!  If you ignore the winds of change… when you are supposed to accept a mission… they will turn into a hurricane.

We had always continued to spend summers at our North Carolina farm.


Merrily Farms.  In other words Smalltown USA was already in our blood and we had maintained a small Smalltown USA focus at our www.garyascott.com site but Ecuador dominated most of our time.

Then Susan Rotman, our business psychic consultant, sent an electronic card… all about US patriotic songs and sights.  See the card here.

This card is very patriotic… very not Merri and me.  Susan knew this.

Okay what’s this about?” I emailed her.

She replied:  “Interesting–I woke up yesterday morning from having a dream about you and Merri.  As delightful as you both are, I have never dreamed about you before!  And it was from that I was moved to send you the card“.

We called and asked for a consultation.  During our talk, she said although she disliked Florida but still saw us spending time there.

Then I realized that we were in our 14th year in Ecuador…7 years spiritual. 7 years business and in looking back… our business and lifestyles change every 7 years.

This is why the first property we purchased in Ecuador was our 962 hacienda, a former sugar cane plantation with a bold trout river. This is also why this is the only of our Ecuador properThis is why we purchased our 252 acre farm in North Carolina where we introduced the idea of Sustainable Draftwood.

Enough. Enough.  I got the point and we headed to Smalltown USA to look around and ended up with a new home in a small town (3,456 population) and in the orange grove business.


Our home and orange grove in Florida.

This was long before I could distinguish between a Ponkan… Navel and Dweet (three types of citrus!)

For totally illogical non linear reasons we saw that it was time to make changes following hunches and clues.

We saw this as an adventure and were waiting to see how interesting this new lifestyle would be.

Some great things happened.  Our orange grove business really blossomed.  I have been able to spend more time with my mom (now 89).

We have four new grandchildren in Oregon and England and another on the way so it’s been easier to be with them.

Readers really gained from the advice we shared about buying good value Florida real estate.  Our writer’s camps in Florida and North Carolina began to bloom.

I kept waiting.  All these changes were good… but we had left left a really important social economic shift of Americans ready to move and retire in Ecuador.

I expected something new that was even bigger than this.

It has arrived…  Positive Community Publishing.   The potential for creating a groundswell of positive information at the grass roots level in Ecuador, the USA and everywhere is exciting.

This is the best opportunity we have seen in our 44 year career.

We realized that the driving force between our Ecuador and Smalltown USA services are the same… the public’s loss of faith in just about everything… the government…. the educational system… agriculture… the police… the church… the medical and legal community… the insurance industry… in short the establishment.

Almost two decades ago Merri and I noticed that 20% of Americans were thinking about leaving the USA.

How Big Is the Problem?

We can get a feel of this problem by viewing the wave of  Canadians and Americans leaving their homeland.  A survey done by Zogby International of adult Americans on the subject of relocation outside the U.S. covered more than 115,000 respondents.

Zogby wrote:  A total of 103,645 adult Americans were surveyed in six polls conducted from September of 2005 through December of 2006. The margins of error range from roughly six-tenths of one percent to one percent.

This report suggests that about 13 million American households planned to leave the US full or part time or at least own property abroad.  Our Ecuador Living service was created to help the percentage of that group who planned to become Ecuador expats.

Fortunately we have something even better than research like the Zogby study.  We have experience.   Research shows what people say they are going to do.

We developed  a business around this trend we saw and created EcuadorLiving.com… today one of the most read websites about Ecuador.

We see that this shift helps serve the other 80% who have lost confidence in the establishment but are not leaving!

Other studies show that a big percentage of this population will move to Smalltown USA.

Plus we have discovered that this service can help readers in Ecuador or anywhere globally as well.

Two readers, one in Ecuador and one in the UK recently asked if we could help them publish a positive community magazine at a distance.

Dave and Sherry Johnson who publish the two model magazines replied: The great thing about our model is you can start small (part time) and scale it to your particular time constraints.  We work this full time because it is our only income.  If I had a job and my wife wasn’t working, we certainly wouldn’t be putting out two magazines.

That said, depending on how much of the magazine you decide to do yourself and how much you decide to have us or someone do for you, will ultimately determine how much time is needed.

Of course the other factor that will determine how much time you commit is your revenue desires/needs.

This model has worked in a community with as few as 300 homes and could work well up to 50,000 population.  The sweet spot is 15,000 to 30,000 population here in the US, but I am certain it is similar in Ecuador.  A community could also be a niche group.  We had a youth soccer (football) league approach us to do a monthly magazine, nine months out of the year.  You are really only limited by your imagination.

The sales system we have developed is very unique with non-seasoned salespeople in mind.  It is more about getting involved with the community (chamber of commerce, networking groups, merchant associations, events, etc.) than actually knocking on doors and cold calling.  Once business owners discover what you are doing, they’ll get behind it especially if you are genuine, which it appears as though you are.

In a nutshell, we’ve developed a system that is as flexible as you need it to be where you can do as much or as little as you’d like in the process.  And, as far as competition is concerned, because our system is so cutting-edge, it would be hard for someone publishing using the traditional model to have a better overall offering.  Our program focuses on the three things that makes advertising work, having the right message, in front of the right people at the right time.  If the advertisers are happy, and they will be, the rest of the publication will almost take care of itself.

Sherry Johnson who does the ad sales for their magazines wrote“Do you know I have sold four ads in the past four days over the phone &
email.  Haven’t met the company, they called me – I didn’t even have to work at it.  That’s why I love this business, you do it for the right reasons and
the advertising just flows!  One was a full page ad for a year which is worth $5,340 to my bottom line in 2013!”

David Cross who handles all the website part of the business wrote: There’s a lot of different types of communities in Ecuador that this could scale well to and a person we train and give more time to virtually may be one way to provide support in that area.

In short we are all willing to give this a go.  We’ll meet with you when it works out but train and support via the internet until then.

If you can get the editorial and the ads… then we can do the design… the ad layout… the internet work, etc. and do our best with the printer.

That is our goal in fact.  The initial training teaches you how to do all on your own but our real earnings come from providing you with these services.

Yes you can start with 32 pages instead of 64 and go bi monthly or quarterly. PCM can do most of the work for you.

In the end the success depends on rates and effectiveness for advertisers.  The Johnson’s strategy of positive… hyper community and ridiculously low overheads make their combination hard to beat.

Please let me know.  As mentioned this is the beta stage so the cost will never be lower… but I can also send that refund instead.



We can help you serve the world and your future better in the new positive community wave in three ways.

#1: Merri and I share our 45 years of writing and  publishing experience to help you learn how to write to earn at our Writer’s Camps.   Learn more about our Writer’s Camps

#2: Learn how to publish a small positive community magazine. See a sample of the first model magazine in our Positive Community Magazine venture,  Asheboro Magazine, here.

See why we believe in small positive community magazines. Order a FREE report here.

#3: Our online course,  “Self Fulfilled” can help you learn how to write and self publish.

Seven P Secrets of Self Publishing

When you write, you can work anywhere. 


Here I am working poolside in the winter, at our Florida farm.

gary scott

Here I am with our hound Ma, working during the summer at our North Carolina farm.

Learn how to earn everywhere, while living anywhere you choose.  I have been able to earn by writing in Hong Kong, England, the Isle of Man, Dominican Republic and Ecuador to name a few of the places I have lived.   Anywhere I am,  I am  able to work.

All I need is my laptop.

That’s all you need too… a laptop to be free!

Before computers, a pencil and pad did the job.

Freedom is just one benefit you can gain from a laptop business.

Another benefit is income.   Writing has brought me both our farms in Florida and North carolina, free and clear… plus a lot more.

Another good example of earning potential is my friend Hugh Howey.   He was working for $10 an hour in a book store when he self published his novel Wool, typing in a storage room during his lunch breaks.

Soon he was earning over $100,000 a month on Amazon.com.  This helped secure a six-figure book deal from Simon & Schuster, and an option for film by Ridley Scott, director of Blade Runner and Alien.

That’s what he’s doing now.

Hugh Howey

Hugh and I playing chess (he beats me badly).

Writers like Hugh are great inspirations.

A couple of years ago Hugh  left Florida, and moved to South Africa.  He had a sailing catamaran built for him and now can sail the world while he continues to write.

Hugh explained it like this: And that’s the miracle of working as a writer: I can do it from anywhere and everywhere. The past few years, I’ve done a lot of writing from airplanes and airports while on business trips abroad.  SAND was entirely written overseas while traveling through seven different countries; I think it’s a better story because of those inspirations.  In upcoming years, I may be writing near your home port.

Hugh’s a super star writer and his success could not happen to a more deserving and talented person.  He pours enormous energy into being worthy of his readership.  But you do not have to be a million dollar a year earner or a traveler to benefit from writing.

The good news is… you do not need a huge success to have a rich and fulfilled lifestyle.  Self Publishing can bring you a life that most people only dream of, as a journeyman writer, instead of a super star.

May I hastily add that the path to stardom begins as a journeyman… so the journeyman’s path brings success without stardom… but can also lead to stardom.

What most success stories like Hugh’s rarely explain is the many hours of writing that was devoted before their self published book sales soared.   Hugh, like most writers were journeymen first.  Stardom came later.

Here are sevens secrets that can help you become a journeyman writer. 

The secrets are a writer’s armory of tools that allows almost anyone to create successful publications for income, freedom and fulfillment.

Take Merri’s and my publishing business as an example.  

Merri and I are not writing stars.  We are journeymen who have for more than 40 years, year in and year out, earned solid income writing and self publishing dozens of publications about multiple subjects.

Some years that income has been more than solid… over a million dollars.  Yet in terms of stardom, we are hardly known.

In a moment you’ll see why that’s fine for us and probably will be for you too.

First some history.

Merri became involved in self publishing over 40 years ago… first helping a veterinarian publish a book on a very specific market… animal acupuncture. Then she showed a needle point artist how to sell more books to an even more specific audience… “needle point enthusiasts”  about her needle point work to an audience larger than the population of the city she lived in.  This led Merri to eventually become Executive Editor of an award winning magazine in Florida.

My story allowed Merri and me to work and live from Hong Kong to London to Europe to Eastern Europe, then the Caribbean and then Ecuador… making millions in the process of following our adventures… having fun… while helping a large readership adapt to a rapidly changing world.

That’s what self publishing can bring, profit, adventure and fulfillment, a great feeling of worth and wonder.

Self Publishing has created exactly the lifestyle we desire allowing us to span the world and work with meaning and purpose.

Self Publishing has become a new business art form. 

The seven secrets can help you start your own self publishing business now.

Everything in publishing is new and exciting and changing.  Publishing is being recreated by the wonderful power of destructive technology.

Everything is new… except the seven secrets. 

Change in the publishing industry is disturbing many.   We love this evolution due to these seven secrets we call the 7Ps.  The 7 Ps are so fundamental to writing and publishing that new technology enhances rather than reduces their power.

The First P is Passion.

Whatever your passion, you can immerse yourself in it AND create income with self publishing.  This can be your direct ticket to the kind of fulfillment you’ve always wanted.

Whether you want to travel the world or live as a recluse, work 12 hours a day or not work much at all,  you can set your schedule to succeed, if you’re willing to learn these seven secrets.

You can start part-time with any dream, passion, and budget.  Once you’ve created a product, you’ll enjoy the “multiple effect” of producing profits over and over again.

So the question is… What do you love to do?

What’s Your Passion:  An example is that thirty years ago, a client of Merri’s had a passion to help people who were in pain?  He published a series of pamphlets explaining various chiropractic disorders in very simple terms.  For example: “What Is Whiplash?”

The pamphlets contained solid information, but were simple 5″ x 7″ brochures with drawings and explanations. He sold them with a rack to chiropractors, who put them in their offices for patients to read.  These little self-published items sold year in and year out for decades.

There are thousands of ideas of this sort that can lead to big business.  It’s just a matter of defining and then acting on your passion.

Although I can work when I please and go where I wish, for me the most important reason for being a publisher is the satisfaction it brings. 

I love the projects I take on, so work doesn’t feel like, well… work.

What do you love?  If you love golf, then you can write and sell publications about golf.  Love travel, fishing, dogs, dolls, or art?  Write and sell publications in these fields.

Are you concerned about crime, war, poverty or environmental issues?  You can publish information products that help reduce these concerns.

Would you like to help the world be a more spiritual place?  Publish a newsletter, write a book (or hire someone to write it for you), record a tape… publish something that enlightens people.

Whatever your passion, you can immerse yourself in it and earn income by publishing for ereaders, print on demand, CDs, lists, bound books, or any format you choose.

Be immersed in your passion and get paid well for it. 

This is why stardom is not the main goal for most writers and self publishers.  Extra income, more freedom and fulfillment are usually more than enough enough.

The seven Ps are:

#1: Passion

#2: Problem

#3: Person

#4: Profitably Priced Product

#5: Prospecting Pathway

#6: Promise

#7: Presentation

The first time I exposed others to the secrets in Self Publishing was in a weekend “Writer’s Camp” seminar.  We offered the camp for $1,500. 80 delegates enrolled.  People from all walks of life attended—chiropractors, businessmen, investors, doctors, realtors, inventors, airline pilots, engineers, and housewives.

Merri and I were so overwhelmed by the response, we decided to make it available to a larger audience.  We created a written course based on our current self publishing activity called “Self Fulfilled – How to be a Self Publisher.”  Then we recorded the weekend “Writer’s Camp” seminar.

Thousands have used the course as it has evolved over the decades.

You can receive both the written course and the recorded weekend seminar, in an MP3 file, in a special “Live Well and Free Anywhere” program I am making available to you.  The normal fee is $299 for the written course and $299 for the recorded workshop.   I’ll send you both the course and the recorded workshop and my course on how to expand the profits of what you write called “Eventful Business” (also $299) all for $299.  You save $598.

We are so confident that you’ll gain from this offer that if you are not fully satisfied, simply email us within 60 days for a full refund .

These courses are not theoretical.  They describe, step-by-step, how Merri and I built a million-dollar international business and how we are running this self publishing business right now.   We use the 7Ps today just as we did four decades ago to create a strong annual income.

This correspondence course is for those who would like their own international self publishing micro business for fun and profit. If you want fun, freedom, extra income and fulfillment with your own full or part time writing or want to build your existing business, by writing to sell you can profit from this course.  The course can help who want their own business or who want to have a business together or a family business.  This is the perfect course for those who can no longer find employment, who are looking for ways to earn abroad and who wish to retire and supplement their income.

Whether you are retired, an investor, chiropractor, doctor, dentist, professional or already own your own business, this offers another way to make money, to turn your passion into profit. We guarantee that we have shared all we know to help you start and run your own international business.  Enjoy and live a life of following your Passion to Profit… through writing.

Here is a special offer. 

Whatever your passion, however you do business, chances are you’ll be writing either to create a product or to sell a product. 

You save more than $598 because you also receive a recorded webinar conducted by our webmaster David Cross (at no extra cost).

David-cross-images tags:"2012-4-20"

David Cross

David has been our webmaster since our website began in the 1990s.  He is Merri’s and my business partner. We could not run our business as we do without him.

Learn the tactics we use in our web business that condenses 27 years of practical experience about search engine optimization, and writing for search engines.

For the last 27 years David has worked with companies large and small – IBM, Agora Publishing, AstraZeneca and many small business owners.  He has worked in 22 countries, and lived in six of them.

David’s clients span the globe and represent companies and charities both large and small.  From corporate giants to small, one-woman businesses and everything from finance, healthcare, publishing, technology, real estate, veterinarians, alternative health centers and everything in between.

David is an essential part of our web based business.

Myles Norin, CEO of Agora, Inc.  wrote:  “I have found David’s knowledge and experience unmatched in the industry.  Without David’s expertise and guidance for the past 7 years, we would not be nearly as successful as we are.”

As Senior Internet Consultant to Agora Inc. in Baltimore, MD, he worked closely with Agora’s publishers and marketers and – over a 7-year period – helped to propel Agora’s online revenues from around $20 million to well over $300 million.

David’s webinar will help you gain benefits in your micro business that large internet marketing companies use.  In this practical recorded workshop you will learn valuable skills to help your micro business.

There has never been a time when the opportunity for small businesses abroad has been so outstanding.  Expand your borders now!  Increase your economic security freedom, independence and success.

If you are not fully satisfied that this offers you enormous value simply email us for a full refund within 60 days.  You can keep all three courses as our thanks for giving our courses a try.

You also receive a report  “How to use Relaxed Concentration to Brainstorm Business Ideas” and a recorded workshop “How to Become and Remain Rich With Relaxed Concentration” at no additional cost.

Plus you get more in the program.

You receive regular writing and self publishing updates for a year.  Businesses usually need to evolve.  Merri and I continue to publish and have our independent businesses.  Some basics have remained for decades, but new strategies occur all the time throughout the year.  We’ll be sending along updates that share our most recent experiences as we learn and continue to grow our international micro business from Smalltown USA.

My special offer to you in this “Live Well and Free Anywhere Program”, is that you receive:

  • “Self Fulfilled – How to Write to Sell” course
  • Video Workshop by our webmaster David Cross,
  • The entire weekend “Writer’s Camp” in MP3,
  • MP3 Workshop “How to Gain Added Success With Relaxed Concentration”
  • The business course “Eventful Business”
  • Any updates to any of the courses, workshops, reports or recordings for a year

We are so confident that you’ll gain from this offer that if you are not fully satisfied, simply email us within the first three months for a full refund. 

Order “Self Fulfilled – How to Publish to Sell” and a full year of update lessons $299.  Click Here.      

See success stories from Self Publishers and a few who have attended the “Writer’s Camp” that you will receive on MP3.