Well it’s not every day you get to interview a rock star… literally.
Steve Mastroianni (aka VØID) is based in Toronto, Canada and has coached hundreds of guitarists while touring the world opening for bands such as KISS, Hinder, and Finger Eleven (TBH I only know KISS from this line-up, being at Aussie)
Today we’re talking about the rapid creation and success of Steve’s new book. PRACTICE LESS, PLAY MORE! is a book that helps guitarists learn songs faster by using the same techniques Steve (aka VØID) uses to learn songs, riffs, and solos in 30 minutes or less.
TODAY Steve’s new book goes live on Kindle and Amazon after already reaching #1 Best Seller in 30 categories across 5 countries just with pre-orders alone. If that wasn’t enough of a reason to pick Steve’s brain for you, he achieved all this, after only getting the idea for the book 6 week’s before hitting #1.
Here’s what we discussed on the interview:
- Steve’s story of being the first band to be signed by Gene Simmons (yep of KISS fame)
- What’s it’s like to be a fair-dinkum rock star, touring with KISS and playing to crowds of tens of thousands.
- What happened to completely change his career (a lesson in values here)
- Steve’s why and his personal charity focus on cancer and carers of people with cancer
- How Steve’s online business started and how he now works with “Bucket Listers” who always wanted to play the guitar…..yep that’s me!
- How does a book fit in with his marketing strategy and how to know if a book is a sensible strategy for YOUR business
- The EXACT steps Steve implemented to go from concept for his book “Practice Less Play More” to bestseller on Amazon in 30 categories across five countries… all in only six weeks! Oh and by the way… that time frame included Christmas!
- How you can get Steve’s help to get your own book done and best-selling.
To help you implement, I’ve included below the exact timeline of Steve’s process from idea to best seller, plus the key steps you can use to plan out your own best selling book launch.
BUCKET LIST ALERT: Tomorrow I have a private lesson with a rock star guitarist 🙂 Yep Steve and I, different sides of the world, Zoom, guitars and a promise I’ll be playing one of my favourite songs within the hour.
You can watch the video, listen to the audio, download from the podcast directory, or read the transcript below. Never miss an episode. Click here for all the ways you can subscribe.
5 Steps To Write and Launch a Best Selling Book in Just 6 Weeks
Here’s the exact timeline of Steve’s book creation and launch, with the steps he completed at each stage. I’ve also broken each step down for you into the stages I can see you need to plan for, plus some tips from my interview with Steve, on what I see contributed to his success and lessons you can take away to apply in your own business.
1. The Idea and Preparation
December 21st – Idea for book + Title + Short Outline
December 22nd – Consumed as much info on writing books as possible
I love how Steve didn’t go straight from his short outline to writing.
He knows the fastest way to reach your goals is to find others who have achieved what you want to do and learn from them.
He looked for how to structure a book, how many words to write, what software to use to write, “hacks” to get the book written fast, how to self-publish, how to pre-launch, how to be a best-seller.
- Everything is Google-able
- Learn from others who have already had success
- Set a time frame around finding information so you don’t get Analysis Paralysis. Steve only spent one day.
- Start with a short outline
2. The First Draft
December 23rd – Wrote detailed outline
December 24th/25th– Break For Christmas
December 26th-31st – Finished First Draft Manuscript + Cover
Steve shared that he has a house full of people for Christmas so he could only write in short blocks of time. Yet he still managed to get the first draft of a 250 page book done in a week.
His approach was anti-perfection. This is what stops most people ever finishing their book.
Steve is a person who thrives under deadlines and sprints of action.
You may get your energy in a different way (for example setting a schedule of a certain number of hours per week, or day). The important thing is to work on writing while you have the excitement and buzz for the project.
- Resist perfection. A draft is just that – a draft!
- Repurpose any content you may already have, for example from blog posts etc.
- Keep momentum by working in time batches when you are motivated and excited about the project.
3. Involve Your Tribe
January 3rd-10th – Second Draft Finished (with customer feedback)
January 15th – Hired Formatter + Recruited Launch Team
January 19th – Finished Front + Back Cover
This is key to the success of Steve’s book quality and especially to the success of the launch of the book.
Steve reached out to clients, subscribers, social media and friends and invited them to be part of the Launch Team for the book.
People LOVE to be part of something. As Steve puts it “they like to have something interesting to share when people ask “what have you been up to lately?”.
So give them an opportunity!
This tribe of people reviewed the draft, gave feedback, were the first readers (which means when the book goes live they can be the first reviewers), kept him motivated and importantly, shared with everyone when he was ready to accept pre-orders.
- Invite people to be part of your Launch Team. People love to be in the inner circle.
- Ask people who know your work (so customers) to give feedback on your book content.
- Communication is essential so your launch team feel like a valued tribe
- Outsource the parts you can’t do, like formatting
4. Be Systematic When Self Publishing
January 24th – Keyword + Category Research
January 28th – Input book details in Amazon
January 31st – Final delivery of book in all formats
February 1st – Final upload to Amazon
When it comes to self-publishing on Amazon, the keywords you choose and the categories you list your book in critical.
Do your research on which categories and keywords not just fit your topic, but also have less competition. This increases your chance of hitting #1 in your categories.
- Take the time to research keyword and category selection strategies
- If you choose keywords and categories wisely, it will take you far less sales than you expect to hit #1
- Amazon has a great platform with how-to videos to show you how to self publish simply.
5. Pre-Launch and Launch Day Party
February 5th – Pre-order goes live + hit #1 Best Seller in 30 categories across 5 countries
February 26th – pre-order books are delivered and live sales open (with launch day bonuses)
When the book was available Steve didn’t just make it immediately available.
Instead he set a launch date and used the 3 weeks prior to the launch to build a buzz and take pre-orders.
This is where the Launch Team really help you get momentum.
They helped share the word and this was made even easier for them because Steve linked all sales to his charity work he is so passionate about.
All proceeds from book sales are being used to create new programs for cancer patients and their caregivers through Steve’s fundraising initiative VØID Cancer.
- Don’t go live as soon as the book is written and uploaded to Amazon publishing. Set a pre-launch period to build a buzz.
- Involve your tribe to spread the word.
- If you have a charity or cause you are passionate about, consider donating part or all sales to that cause. This inspires people to share and really, you only need to cover your costs because the money in a book is made on the sales of your programs and services, not the book – so be generous!
So is a book ideal for you?
Crazily, books hold heaps of credibility, even if you already have lots of great content out in the word in the form of programs, free ebooks, videos, blog posts etc.
It opens doors.
So yep, if you know what you will be selling in your business then a book is a brilliant way to reach more potential customers.
So if you have that book idea and just haven’t taken action, here’s my challenge to you.
Set yourself a deadline and go for it baby!
You can check out Steve and his work and also contact him. He’s keen to hear your book ideas and give you guidance.
A Special Message From Janet
Thank you so much for being here. I know there are a lot of podcasts you could choose to listen to and you chose to join me on Romance Your Tribe Radio.
I’m honoured and grateful for your support.
If you enjoyed this week’s episode, I’d love for you to take a quick minute to share your thoughts with us and leave an honest review and rating for the show over on iTunes!
Read The Transcript Here
Janet Beckers: Hello everybody. Janet Beckers here and welcome to Romance Your Tribe Radio. Really excited today because I’m feeling like I’m super cool kind of like rock chick today because I’ve got Steve Mastroianni who is about the rockstar minds, so hi Steve.
Steve Mastroianni: Hey Janet, thanks so much for having me.
Janet Beckers: It’s um, Steve and I met, we actually met in Puerto Rico, didn’t we? Did we met him?
Steve Mastroianni: We met in Austin, in Travaasa
Janet Beckers: Yeah, like very briefly, quite a about a year or so ago with Steve reminded me because we just recently connected through a forum through a mutual friend, James Franco and um, and Steve was sharing this fantastic wind that he had done. And I’ll tell you what, it wasn’t a minute cause I just thought, you know what, Steve, I have got to get you come and share this with everybody that is listening. So, um, can you just briefly say like what the share was, what the wind was, and then before we go into the details, I’m just going to introduce you a little bit in the font, a bit more of a back story.
Steve Mastroianni: No problem. Yeah, the win that I shared was that my new book practice less play more, um, hit bestseller on Amazon in 30 categories across five countries. And I did it all from idea to bestseller in only six weeks.
Janet Beckers: Wow. That is just from somebody who has written, I’ve written quite a few books and also taken books to Amazon. Yeah.
Top number one. And I can tell you there’s a lot of moving parts. There’s a lot of moving parts involved in that. So when I heard that it’s just like, this is pretty astronomical what you had done. Steve’s so thank you. So we’re going to dive into that today where I’ve asked Steve if he can share with us how did he do that and some really, you know, what things were important and what things didn’t you worry about doing to be able to achieve something like that. So we’re going to go over and what you to get ready to take notes, everybody, because you know you’re going to get some great ideas on things that you can be doing in your business. Now before we do that, because there’s one thing to say, yeah, a book, but that’s kind of just something that is a message that is getting out there.
I mean, the message comes from that. You know, there’s the person behind it who has the message to share and why they are actually wanting to share that message. And so that’s what I really wanted to dive into a little bit first with you, Steve. So people get to know you. And as everybody’s listening here, I want you to also think about the way that Steve is sharing his message. He’s why the reason he has his business and why he’s doing it. I want you to think yourself. What about with me? How do as, as much as I’m loving this interesting story, how would I tell it if I was Steve and how that would relate to the future book that I might write? So there’s my challenge. So I it to used Steve, first of all, who is it that you help and how do you do that?
Steve Mastroianni: Yeah, so my, my audience is primarily guitar players. Um, I would say a beginner guitar players, um, adult beginners typically ranging from about 40 years old to even, I just, I’m beyond, I mean, um, I I mainly focus on bucket list goals and helping people make, you know, those big rocks are dreams come true. Um, uh, really love it when someone says, oh, but you know, my hands are best, or I wasn’t a music in a musical family or whatever. And then just proving them wrong by, you know, blowing their mind. Um, I love helping guitar players, um, guitars. One of the only things, one of the only activities that activates pretty much every part of the brain. So I also know there’s so many other benefits to learning the car. And so a guitar has been something that’s been a big part of my life for, for many, many years.
And, um, basically I started playing guitar because I kind of reverse engineered a whole plan, even as he, as a teenager where I wanted to travel the world in order to travel the world. I knew that it would be more likely if I was with other people. And, um, and so to do that I thought, you know, it’d be fun maybe putting together a band in order to put together a band, I should write songs. So in order to write songs, I should probably learn how to play guitar. I was a drummer back then, but I thought, you know, let me pick up guitar and um, and learn how to do that, how to write songs. And so one thing led to another and eventually, you know, band after band, I ended up getting, um, s I started a band in 2009 called the envy and we were the first signing to gene Simmons, his record label called Simmons records. Um, he was coming up to Canada to a scout new bands and we were the first signing.
Janet Beckers: Wow. That is huge. And for anybody that doesn’t know Jean signs like shame on you. I mean this is it. This kiss I was sharing with Steve just before we came on that they’re very, I remember the very first time that I got up on the shoulders of them. I have a boyfriend at a music festival and did the whole, it was at a kiss festival.
Steve Mastroianni: That’s awesome. Where did you, where you wearing the makeup?
Janet Beckers: No, I was at that age where you know what the makeup would be cool. But you know, it was more important than I locked hot. Yeah,
Steve Mastroianni: exactly. That’s awesome.
Janet Beckers: Yes, that is, yeah, that’s a pretty big claim to fame. And so first of all, just congratulations on excellence because you know, you don’t just get picked up by somebody like that because you, you know, you’ve shown potential, you know, you get picked up because you’ve already demonstrated excellence. So, and I just love this. Um, and this, this is something that I just picked up the, from what Steve said, he didn’t start from, I love music. I played the guitar a lot and then I just thought I would go further. I love the whole idea that you had a vision for how you want your lifestyle to be and that vision was I k I want to travel and I want to do it with people. So let me reverse engineer. That’s the, I love that whole idea because really that’s what I’m, what I’m passionate about in business and we were talking about before Steve is as well that, you know, creating a business, doing stuff you love and creating the lifestyle. So I just love it. You did it right from the beginning. That’s pretty actually,
Steve Mastroianni: that reminded me of something, um, that, so there was the reverse engineering, which is kind of insane that I understood that back when I was like, you know, 12 years old that I just thought like that. But um, one, one very important thing, a few years later when I was out of high school was that I want it to be a professional musician obviously because that whole plan and I thought there’s no way that I’m going to be able to do that. If I’m flipping burgers at Mcdonald’s was like, you know, a kid, my, my two out of high school and I thought I have to have a guitar in my hand all day. Um, and in order to do that, in order to technically be paid to play guitar first, I started by teaching guitar. So back when I was, you know, 17 I started a guitar teaching business, going House to house. And um, and so I had a guitar in my hand all day and that was the plan because if I was, you know, smelling like cheese burgers when I came home and tired from all that playing guitar and writing songs wasn’t going to be as effective. So I kind of hacked away into being, coming, becoming a professional so that all I was doing all day was guitar and writing songs and getting better at coaching.
And you know what, this reminds me of the Beatles with, you know, the 10,000 hours that’s in, um, Malcolm Gladwell’s books is that the Beatles got to be so fantastic because they went to, I think it was Germany where they had like, you know, 24 hour clubs where what he was was playing and they went there and played and played like for hours every single day. And they went there because they wanted to be the experts. They wanted excellence and it was getting those thousand hours in. So that’s, um, that was pretty wise. It’s actually, so that’s a really great thing to bring into your business that if you’re aiming to create a lifestyle business and you have to have excellence doing what Ivar, well, make you find a way of actually developing your expertise.
Steve Mastroianni: So many ways. I mean, there are so many different ways to make money out there and, um, and it might not be a straight line and might not be obvious. Um, you know, you’d think a little bit outside the box, um, and, and you could find something for sure. I’ve always able to make, you know, I would, I’d have different pairs of jeans that I remember because I was living at my dad’s place that I would kind of forget. Like I go into the closet and I grow a pair of jeans and I put my hand in my pocket. I have like a wad of cash and as a 17 year old, like I was rich, like 400 bucks in my pocket. I didn’t know that. I forget about this is like free money, right? And there are ways to make money for sure and that better in line with your, uh, your goal.
Janet Beckers: I love it. That is, I mean, even even if you don’t remember anything that we’ve done it day to day because of course it’s not going to happen. That’s really, really good point is, you know what if they’re, if you’re aiming for here, what can you be doing that’s going to, you can be making money that’s going to give you that expertise at the same time. Like knock it over. That is, that is brilliant. So now let’s move on because we’re moving over to the business that you’ve created and book. So we’re leaning towards the book. So one thing that I found really interesting is your book, um, and you’ve also taught it really closely with your business is also has a link with cancer. So yeah. Would you mind sharing with us how you’ve linked cancer with your book and why?
Steve Mastroianni: Yeah, so I, and I know for anybody listening to that, it’s like, you know, the story kind of jumps from some those unexpected twists and turns and you know, um, this, this, um, this specific one is actually, um, this was the definitive moment in my life. Um, you know, obviously getting signed by Gene Simmons. We, um, my band, we, we open for kiss a cross, you know, um, North America and Mexico. We played 34 shows with them. And, um, there was this, it was a crazy, crazy time in my, uh, my twenties. And what happened was in 2013 when we were making plans for, you know, what to do for the rest of the year, um, I got a phone call from my father telling me that he was just diagnosed with stage four colon cancer. And you know, I, there was one of those moments where you just every like everything stops, right?
Everything is like in the movie. Everything just, just sort of stops. And in that one moment I knew that my music career, like pause, there’s nothing like, there’s no way I calculated in that moment that if I were to continue it would be unfair to my father and fair to, um, to me unfair to the band and fair to offense. There’d be cancellations like crazy. I just understood that in that one moment and as, as hard as it was, um, to, to make that sort of the, the decision, um, to sort of, to put that on pause because we were, you know, we were on the way up. Um, I had to be there for my father. My father is the why I was mentioning before I played drums. Um, he’s the reason why I play, he bought me the drum kit. He’s always my number one fan.
And, um, and so this was my turn to give back and to take care of him and be there for him. And, um, and so yeah, cause I mean stage four colon cancer, it’s a pretty grim diagnosis and we didn’t know what to expect to see the closest thing that like, I’ve just never experienced that before. Um, so naturally I’m a problem solver and a coach and so I wanted to make sure that I was there from, I’m inspiring them and I’m just finding any solution that I possibly can. And that’s when I started my business rock star mine because I couldn’t sit around. I want, you got to remember I went from, so my stage name wasn’t Steve. Like, I mean, people know me in the music industry has void. And so, um, that was very hard going from sort of the, the, the alter ego traveling the world, you know, hanging out with fans, signing autographs, playing big stages in front of tens, thousands of people every night and then going to, you know, just some Italian kid it at home every the same place all the time being Steve, you know, um, it, it was just, you know, it was a bit of an identity crisis in a sense.
Yeah. So I had to be creative, I had to do something. And so, um, you know, years of coaching on and off tour started this business, a rockstar mine were really, I was just learning marketing concepts and um, and just getting, you know, helping as many people as possible. And um, and my dad was about to turn 60 and I just had this moment where I just saw everything happen. I had this guitar training and I was like, I’m going to teach people how to feel like a rock star. And at the same time I had this sort of Cathartic experience where I created this fundraising initiative called void cancer, which was, um, is a tribute to my father was this, is this, there’s this video, a documentary I made, um, that I, it was my father’s 60th birthday gift and um, and basically the idea is that proceeds from everything that I make with the guitar training proceeds will go to help new, I’m pretty new programs for patients and caregivers, uh, because that was the position that I was in and I felt like if I can help other people, then, um, you know, it’s just going to create a really, really, um, I just, I didn’t know exactly what it would treat, but I knew that it would be awesome.
It would be helpful. It would educate people and um, both guitars and people who have been affected by cancer. Um, I just knew that it was, it was what I needed to do. It was just one of those things that just something clicked and I knew that that’s what I needed to do.
Janet Beckers: And the thing that I love from that and this is, you know, there will be times when you know the people who are listening where there is something that happens in life that is going to be one of those boom. You know, you know sometimes may just be gradual awakening where you come to realize, and I love what you’ve done there, Steve, allow, you talked about the alter ego and then you’ve got like real Steve, you know, it’s like the clock yet type thing. Um, that you know, you can, you can treat that as a reason why all well it was never meant to be or I’m not going to succeed. It’s a reason to give up and change what you do. But I love what you’ve done. There is sometimes those things that are, they can be seen. What the other thing that’s going to stop you that huge is obstacle can really drive your wine business and draw the creativity in business.
And that can be as simple as I was on the career path and I’ve had children that can be the wife for you. It’s, I’m on the career path. And you know what, I have responsibilities to somebody. I love to be there. And so that can really drive your reason why in your business. So, um, we’ll, we’ll flick over now and talk about the book, but before we do, if you can share it, cause I’ve, I’ve watched that documentary this morning and I was just like, I was applauding at the end just there with me and the dog because you know, it’s, it is really, it’s short but incredibly moving and s and it falls away. People can go to get some information. So can you just share that URL for people?
Steve Mastroianni: Yeah. So it’s void. cancer.com v O I d cancer.com. And on the page, it’s just a very simple site. Basically. It’s just the documentary. It’s about five minutes. Um, I think it autoplays um, depending on your browser click that it pretty much learn everything about me. You’ll learn why I named void, why that, how that came about. It’s actually, um, it was pretty interesting and sort of this cosmic thing that, that happened. I was just like, interesting. Like I’m very grateful. I’m especially being a coach, that I can help other people based on some of the, the victories and the losses in my life. Um, and um, and basically the video, it’ll, it’ll, um, kind of tell you the whole story. Um, and then, uh, you know, under there there’s a button that you click and then there’ll be a few different ways that either you can contribute or you can, um, you can contact me. Um, the book, um, and the album that I recorded, so the book that I wrote recently that we’ll discuss and also the album that I recorded, um, I believe it was wow. Three, four years ago at this point. Now I’m all proceeds from, from those, 100% of the proceeds will be used for a new programs. So it’s, I’m very, very happy about that.
Janet Beckers: Yeah, that’s fantastic. And um, and I level so that, um, and we’ll talk a little bit moment yeah. About, um, yeah, about that contact button. So we’ll talk about that at the end is as well. Yeah. So don’t have a look at that cause I just love that video and I loved all the stories behind the tattoos and how that, yeah, we’re not going to give it away. Everybody can go and have a look. Um, so now let’s look over, I love that we’ve got the whole story here about, you know, just your entrepreneurial mind and then your reasons why and I just love how you saw this as your way of giving back. It was your turn to give to you that I just love that. Um, you know what integrity that shows truly and priorities now if when you’ve got your business, so for you, you know, you’ve got this business where you’ve got programs that can help people, you know, I’m your total demographic by the way. Yeah.
Steve Mastroianni: Playing Guitar. I heard about this guitar, a little Birdie told me that there’s a guitar that’s been sitting in, in your, in your room there for 25 years or something like that. That’s just unacceptable that it’s dusty or that it’s just there for show. That’s a sidebar off camera. We’re going to take care of that.
Janet Beckers: Yeah, I’ll have to stop. Totally, totally. Your market, your book. So let’s look at first of all, why a book. So this is if we’re, we’ll approach this in your coaching, in your coaching sort of hat is, okay, so we’ve got six weeks to create a book so we can all look at what had to take place in order to make that happen. But it’s supposed to, we’ll take the step of, there are so many ways that you can get your message out there. There so many different strategies that you can be putting your time into it. You can only do so much. So why a book and why would other people be looking at using a book as part of their marketing mix?
It’s a great question. Um, and, and I think to really capture the sort of six weeks, the, the understanding kind of why that all happened the way that it did. And, um, just quick, little aside is that my life is just about as chaotic as you can imagine. This is where I teach and this is where I run the business. I’m inside my house right now and my wife and my daughter who is now 13 months old, um, they were home for a full year, so 2018 they were home every single day. And I’m trying to run a business over here. I do, you know, songwriting and production as well. And I do have a studio downtown that’s sometimes I go to, but it’s just me and my wife here and we’re taking care of our daughter. And so I made a conscious decision that in 2018 that I’m going to be here during, you know, the most pivotal time in a child’s life and also bond with my daughter.
Um, I have no idea what I’m doing as a father, even though, you know, I had some audio books and stuff that I listened to him, but it was absolute chaos here. Anything business related was going to be a bonus. Like anything that was created, any asset that was created is going to be a bonus. And Trust me, I’ve tried everything, webinars and every method of delivery. Okay. And, um, and so what happened on December 21st of 2018, you know, just as we’re getting into Christmas, lightening in a bottle happened like something just, I just got inspired to write a book. It was actually James Schramko had a podcast that I listened to and there’s another cosmic sort of situation where certain things aligned. I just thought, oh my God, I’m going to write a book. And in that moment I understood that books are still so powerful.
It’s where I get a lot of my information, whether it’s an audio book or um, or written book. But the, basically the book, I just knew this was the method of delivery because I know my audience as well, that they, um, they’ve asked me in the past if I’d have a book, they have ’em because they’re an older demographic. I know that they want to get away from the screen because a lot of times it’s, that creates anxiety. So holding a book in their hands is something that they have and it’s very intimate that they could read at their own pace. They can mark up. It’s a very interactive medium. Whether it’s a ebook or paperback. And, um, and in that moment I just understood all of that. So I almost like blacked out. And next thing I knew 20 minutes later I have a little outline or it sort of just a sort of Cathartic and um, and so, and there was, this is a reason why I’m telling you all this is because number one, there’s no right time to start a book.
Like when you’re, when you’re inspired, um, you have to take hold of that. I’ve realized in my life because I’ve gone through these two weeks spurts of learning something or, or being obsessed with something. And what I’ve noticed for myself is that after two weeks it dies down. Like, um, and this was the worst possible time Christmas was about to get started, holidays, madness, new years, all the madness, right? And so I could have easily said, oh, I’m inspired to write a book. You know what, let’s put it off till the new year. You know what? Yeah, the new year. And when, I mean, when everything calms down, I’m going to get to the book. Is that inspiration? Does not work that way. Being obsessed with something you have to dive in and, and it doesn’t mean that you have to like, you know, hibernate or anything like that, but dive in and make sure that every day and as much as you possibly can, that you hold onto that inspiration and that fire inside you because it will go away.
You might not think it will, but it’s not going to feel the same. I’m so grateful that I wrote the book, um, last year, um, in that time, in that short time, because if I didn’t, I know right now there’s no way that like I can’t, I’m not going to write a book from scratch, my first book, the pressure of all this stuff. It’s just not going to happen. So you have to hold onto that inspiration, ride the wave of inspiration and be obsessed with it during that time, especially in the first two weeks. It’s crucial in the first two weeks. So what I did was I outlined to just whatever, just got whatever, like, you know, um, put books, experts are very, um, in some ways it’s much easier than if it was, let’s say it was fiction because there’s things that you talk about with clients that you just get it on paper, like get it on the screen or getting it on paper just as much as you can.
Don’t judge just right. Just get it out. You’re just in sort of purging mode. And, um, and then, um, what I did was I, um, so I did a detailed outline. There are, sorry, I outlined it just the first one and then I bought a book on how to write a book. I also want to leverage experts. I don’t want to like love it. I want it to make sure that I got this book done before the New Year. Like, which is absolutely crazy. The December 21st I’m inspired and like December 22nd, um, all I have is like sort of a short little outline and I read, I’m reading this book, um, what was it? It was book in a box. I was not called describe method by Tucker Max and it just, I wanted to get as many ideas as possible to, to write. And um, and so December 22nd that happened in December 23rd, I write a detailed outline, some 24th and 25th is Christmas boxing day.
I started writing the book and by this time I had a, a detailed outline and all that means is just basically, you know, first I kind of cure are some sections that the main sections that I want to talk about not thinking about this is for sure just staying in dreamer mode, stay injury remote, get it out there. You’re still holding onto that, that inspiration and you’re, I’m still just, you’re not judging, you could always edit later, but you have to get stuff out there. I’m onto paper or on the screen. And um, so yeah, Christmas happened December 26th. I had a crazy thought in my head that, okay, I’m going to start the book. Anything is going to be good because it’s going to be tangible. And I designed the cover as well. I designed to cover and I made again, it doesn’t have to be perfect.
I just had to get on there because if I had a cover then now the book is real. I even made the most three d l line or three d mock ups. So I saw the book, it’s like a little mind hack and clearly my company’s called rockstar minds. Like I study a lot about like how the mind works in everything. You have to make it tangible, it has to be real. And you went, you did enough work where there’s an outline and you write a little bit as much as you can in the, the first, um, you know, crucial little area, um, period there. But the more real you can make it, then you’re hooked in, then you actually start feeding the fire of it so that two weeks it doesn’t dip anymore. Now what’s happening is you get a little boost because, oh yeah, I’ve got enough, I’ve got an outline or I’ve got a cover or you know, you’re giving a little, a little boot suits momentum going.
Right? And then I literally, I actually, I know how I did it, but I also don’t know how it happened where I finished the book in five days. I wanted to make sure that by the 31st uh, New Year’s Eve, this book was finished because I did not want to go into 2019 having to write this book. My mother in law was moving in from Italy. Um, my wife was getting ready to go back to work. My daughter going to daycare January was an insane month, so I wanted to make sure that the book was done. So deadlines, obviously very important. It’s like all the things that I’ve ever learned about success, all kind of converged and five days I had, I had a book of an the 11 chapters, 256 pages done.
Janet Beckers: I was going to ask you that. How many pages, the thing that’s come from here, that there’s a couple of really good lessons for everybody here that I really want you to take away from this because you might be listening to this and go, yeah, I can imagine for a lot of people it’s going to be this little voice in the back of your head going, yeah, that’s him, but not me. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I couldn’t do that. I couldn’t have Christmas. I’ve got these responsibilities or whatever. So number one is I want to say to use that little voice that you can hear in your head. Tell it shut up. Okay,
Steve Mastroianni: Awesome. That’s great. That’s a great point. By the way, the voice doesn’t, is not actually, it doesn’t mean anything. The voices is the prompt. You could say yes, you could see no. All it is is just your business checking in. That’s it. And by the way, it could be five days, it’d be 50 days. Like for me, I was just what I did. Right. And I’m also competitive, so I wanted to kind of like I got into it after a while we get a telephone or something like that with the thermometer going up, whatever. Like I was getting competitive. Right. That was a bit insane. You don’t have to write it in five days. I just did that because things are nuts around here with the baby. Yeah. I just, I wanted to do it so I could inspire other people to do it in, in chaos.
Janet Beckers: Why don’t we go and you know what? This for me, there are three lessons that I’d really like to point out from people on this. So number one of them is that, first of all we talked about strategy and that you had used all different things as a format for getting your voice out there, but you, and you had the Aha on the book that you already know your demographic will really appeal to a book. And for me a book works really well because it gets it into the audience of people who might not actively be searching online. It’s another way to reach them. So this was not a bright shiny object. So your first thing you’ve got to ask yourself is, I’ve got this inspiration. Do a double check to make sure is this a bright shiny object? I shouldn’t be immersing myself, you know, should I put it in my book of great ideas, um, or um, or I call it my book of squirrels cause it’s sort of like Whoa, this is real.
So should it go into the book or squirrels or show it action is now. So that’s number one. The next thing then was I absolutely love batching. So like I create all of my content in batches because you get a certain energy and you can get on a flight. So I love what you’ve just demonstrated there is batching, totally intense. Now the other one that I really love how you said for you, you’re very competitive and so you kept on going, you wanted to do it in the short time. That was really important. Another good thing to know here is know your personality. So any kind of work that you had done on knowing your strengths, where you work well is have a look at that because there’s some people that would stop them. Still that whole to your idea of, but I’ve got a plan this if your, if you know that the way that you work, well, there’s, I am the person that I am going to focus and make the most of dispatching energy, but I am a person who if I don’t have my laid out plan in my calendar where this fits in, I’m going to be so stressed out by the whole thing.
I can’t do it. No that, but take action to get yourself organized and make it happen and batch it and do it quick. Making at least a year to do a book.
Steve Mastroianni: Your perfectionist voice will just keep coming in. You’ll just want to make that part better and you have to, you have to just keep moving forward. And one very important thing that worked for me is I made it easy for myself to create. Look, I didn’t, I didn’t hibernate for five days straight. It was Christmas visits. It was the holidays. And so what I actually did was I used a program called scrivener, which is a pretty popular, a writing program, but I had it on this computer out on my laptop. I had it on my phone and they’re all singing basically. And that, that works for me. Like if you write on a piece of paper, like whatever works for you, the most important thing in the first stage, because remember it’s just the first draft, right? As you’re getting it out there and making it easy for yourself. If you write with pen and paper, I have a pen and a piece of paper on every single floor of your hosts, like have, have it everywhere because ideas would come to me. Um, I’m frying up an egg. Oh, you know, oh my God, that’s great idea for a chapter. So I started writing, writing, writing, writing. And that’s sinked up in all of my areas here.
Janet Beckers: Do you have any tips? I love that. That is really, really good because that’s, yeah, cause I know I’m just checking my tongue to make sure I could honestly, I could talk about it. Yeah, I know when I write my, my solid, it wasn’t collaborative. Um, I wa I liked batching, so like you’ve described it and we’ll say very organized, systemized. So I found for me, I had to have a spreadsheet but I also had a fold up cause I’m very, all in all, I like paper and I liked pins, but it was all very racist, systemized. But I had that, I carry both of those things absolutely every way. Cause I love how you said, you know, you’re going to get your ideas, get it down, otherwise it’s going to lock up your head. That is brilliant. Okay. So we’ve talked about, I love the idea of get your brilliance focused on it. Now in that batching for that too, we can keep that energy. That’s knowing yourself super well. So the next step then, so if you’ve got your proud and good page number, by the way, from somebody who made their books slightly too big and it costs a fortune to post it, um, yeah, that’s a good, that’s a good size number is what was the next thing? So you’ve got your book here, you’ve gone from draft, what was the next steps to be able to get it so that you could actually get it to bestselling?
Steve Mastroianni: Yeah. Um, so in a nutshell, once the draft was done, um, it was basically I’m going to cheat, I’m going to find two people who, um, so my customers who know my stuff, who either they’ve had to hear me yapping away, they basically had to see this, all of these like crazy hands and hear me talking about the same stuff over and over for years. And, um, I asked both of them to, uh, to read the book, give me feedback. And um, so what I wanted to make sure because I knew that I would take the feedback with a grain of salt. I knew I wasn’t going to incorporate everything blindly. Um, I wanted to just make sure that it sounded like me because I don’t, I didn’t want the book to be stuffy. I want it to be funny. I told you I tell tour stories in there.
Um, you know, I talk about Gene Simmons, there’s some funny stuff in there anyway, but I wanted to talk, I feel like a conversation with me. Um, and so I wanted to make sure that it felt like me. So it was my voice and also that the communicated the same system that I’ve been telling these guys or for you. So that was the main thing. I want to make sure I made some edits to. Um, to the book. I also went through, I used, um, pro writing aid instead of Grammarly pro writing aid. I just did a sweep of, you know, look, I understood it. This is not going to be a perfect book. I just want to make sure that I did due diligence. I went through, um, and, and I, I got these guys to check it in. And then after that, you know, um, or you know, I would just, I got a format or have hired, um, cause I don’t know how to do that for, for kindle.
And we’re, um, for, uh, for paperback. I just, I don’t know how to do that. And if I learn, which I’m happy to learn, it just takes too much time. I really wanted to make sure this thing could happen in the short period of time. So I hired a format or on upwork and um, and then I also, I designed the cover. I just haven’t had an idea for the cover. We’ll show the book. Basically this is the, one of the proof copies. But I designed basically, this is three rule of three is so important in my life that there’s three sections in the book. There’s three sort of things, um, you know, three core sort of elements to the system and um, you know, it’s, it’s sort of the rule three. So I did this and um, all the while boosting that obsession because at any point you can sort of like, you can crash.
I mean, you have to have a good support system in place and you have to have good wins, quick, quick little wins, right? So, um, I get as the guys are reading the book and I’m giving the feedback or they’re giving me the feedback, then I’m also constructing and recruiting a launch team from my subscriber list and my customer list and putting together a launch team of people who want to get behind the scenes, look at a launch, um, be part of something cool because also the fact that I’m using all proceeds for avoid cancer, be part of something that’s actually going to change people’s lives. Um, and uh, you know, I’m in exchange, you know, treat them like gold. I’m, I’m giving them the book for free, giving them goodies and just taking care of them and they’re going to, they’re going to share the book and um, and, and spread the word and connect me with whoever they can connect me with. All of that is happening at this at the same time. That’s what January was all about this period of time.
Janet Beckers: I just want to just briefly say something on that strategy because this is something most people don’t do. A lot of times you can get focused on the product and get focused on getting it out there. Where is the realities? I mean this podcast is called romance. You’re trying, so a tribe and people want to be gathered around things. They want to be gathered around ideas. They will get attracted to a leader and the leader is a person who has the message and so invite the mean
Steve Mastroianni: black. I’ve never seen, I’ve never seen anything so crazy in my life. People, as soon as I announced that I was writing this book and like now I’m an author, everyone thinks that they want him to be part of it then and I’m getting all proceeds to to cancer. They want to be part of that. Everyone wants to be part of something special because I’m not seeing that, you know, I’m not saying life is boring or anything like that, but a lot of times we can get into a mundane routine and being part of something that’s that’s important and special. These are the things that people will say when they go visit their friends house. Oh, you know, what do you, what you been up to? I’m part of this awesome thing. This launched. People want, want, important things to talk about. They want that and they need that. And it gives them, it gives them, makes them, makes them feel like what they’re doing is, you know, it’s purposeful.
Janet Beckers: Yeah. I love that. That is that he’s a, that’s the whole thing of building tribe, building community. And then you’ve got that groundswell that allows it that, you know what, the book hasn’t even been released yet. I’ve got it on preorder and you’ve got it to number one. So how so was that launch team essential to that happening?
Steve Mastroianni: 100%. Yeah. Um, so, so everybody, they want to help out in any way they can. So, I mean, they’re preordering there or they’re getting all their friends, the preorder, they’re sharing it on their wall. There are some people are connected to some influencers and they preorder the message out to their list. It’s just, you know, when you do good work and you treat people well, they just want to help out. And so it doesn’t even have to be, I wanted to, I wanted to get the best seller because, um, it was just a bucket list goal of mine that I remembered since I was eight years old. I completely forgot. I was like, yeah, I wanted to be an author when I was a kid and I’ve read ignited this, um, this spark and um, and basically, so I have, um, if there’s a best seller was something that, yeah, I, there’s a little strategy that I just want to share with that, but basically getting a bunch of people together, this person knows this person and this person knows this person.
It’s just, it’s a network. So you can’t, I’ve heard, I can’t remember who said this, but they’re saying that if you want to do something, if you want to solve a problem, what is it is it’s, um, if you do it yourself, it’s like two, two times effective or something like that. And if you want to, um, solve a 10 x the problem, um, or Tenex to this solution, I’m totally butchering this, but you need to have, you need to have other people. It’s basically it’s saying that you can either go go it on your own and try to do everything yourself, but as soon as you add other people, it makes it exponentially more effective. And, um, and I truly understood this with this book, this experience because, um, we hit bestseller it, I announced it at 9:00 AM and we were bestseller in the UK by noon. Um, and we were, we were also then in the u s at 2:00 PM and then in Canada it just took forever for Canada to, it took for the numbers come in. That was like by 4:00 PM, something like that. Um,
Janet Beckers: Google, Amazon, kindle or Amazon.
Steve Mastroianni: So this was, so Amazon kindle, um, that’s the only thing that you can preorder of, at least for new authors. You can preorder that book, the book, basically, it’s going to be coming out in all formats. Um, yeah, so that’s very excited about that. Um, with bestseller one, one thing that I made sure of is that you have to do good keyword research. You have to do good category research. And what that means is just look at the categories that are relevant to your niche and, um, and look at what you’re up against basically. And you can make, you can kind of make your plan based on what’s out there. It’s don’t be product focused as much. See what’s out there, get out there and see what’s going on in the outside world and, and start playing off of that. What are those titles? What are they saying, what’s on their page, you know, things like that. Um, and so making sure that, um, you, yeah, you, the keyword research and I’m, and category research was definitely huge.
Janet Beckers: That is brilliant. And you know, that’s one thing I found with, um, it with when I’d done campaigns to get, you know, to, to number one and done that with clients as well, is it’s very much like Seo, like search engine optimization. You’re going to get a much better chance of getting seen if you take the time to do your keyword or keyword research and look to make sure you get those categories in the words that I’m not as competitive, but they’re also ones that people are looking for. Um, yeah, so I love it.
Steve Mastroianni: Not as hard. It’s not as hard as it seems. Yeah. You just have to get out there. Like I’ll, I’ll be, you know, honest, there’s, there’s, there’s a little fear of like getting out in the, in the, the, the real world where you search something and like sometimes, I don’t know if anyone else has this, but I’m kind of a little bit scared to like type in my idea and see that other people have that idea. And then I’m like, aw, I’m shut down right now. But it’s so important to put yourself out there. I’m like, get your search, you know, in practice less, play more. Or are there any other books called practice less, play more and it’s important to see what’s related to that. The different books that are going to be coming up and put yourself in the sort of shoes of the person who’s searching for this thing and yeah.
Anyway, I mean getting to bestseller on and the books not even out. It was just, I mean a dream dream come true. I was completely bedridden by the way, just as a, as this little tidbit we were, by the time we got to UK I was going to Keel over, I’ve got whatever, my daughter, she went to daycare and I got whatever bug she brought home on Facebook. We’ve got like the airbrushed Sorta lifework everything’s amazing and all that. But little does anyone know that I was actually like in fetal position on my phone and stuff. I’m just, I’m hoping that launch day goes much better health wise then a then preorder dated.
Janet Beckers: Yeah. And just to answering that, you know, the, the questions that people have got when you said, you know, you’ll do a search on your feet, somebody else has done this, you know, I won’t be able to, you know, I always have this love, this reframe that I use and it’s so perfect talking to a musician about this is, you know what, if you have a look at all of the number one here, you know, they usually a love song and the top tens are usually a love song and that has been for decades and decades and decades. There is always room for another love song and that can be your book. So, um, yeah, it’s just keep that as your, as your reframe, if you’ve got yourself in your mind. And the other other thing I just, sorry, I might do a little bit of a wrap up now.
Some key points. One of the things that we’ve got here is like number one, when you’ve got that concept doublecheck, not bright, shiny object. Yup. This is absolutely a great idea. Is My energy like totally focused on this. Now, if I try to do something else, is my mind going to be consumed by it anyway? Let’s just get it done as much as we can and just stop perfection, get, get, get it done. So there was that. Then there’s the next side of, okay, I’m going to be systematically putting it all out so that you know, it will be writing and I’ve got, you know, so you’ve got that systematic side of you, you’re looking at keywords, but then the magic comes when you actually involve the community. When you bring a tribe in. And one of the things, and that was what you were saying was absolutely essential to the success of this launch. Now one thing that I know, whenever I’ve talked to people about this around involving a community around something about watching your book, very often people will go, but I can’t ask people to do that for me. Like it’s selfish and it stops them from moving forward. I loved how you said how this was such a gift to the people who were involved because the story, yeah,
Steve Mastroianni: they want to tell the story. We forget. We forget that w w what are the cool things like for them to tell at a dinner party and I’m, and to share on their wall. I mean it’s, it’s super cool to be part of a project like that, especially that we all get to celebrate together. That we hit bestseller. We did it, you know, if we could all have the champagne, you know, going, it’s, it’s, it’s such a special thing. I couldn’t have done it without, without people. And one very, very important thing of why you need a launch team is because those people on the launch team, they will give you your first reviews, four or five star reviews on Amazon and between bestseller and Amazon having the reviews, basically it’s going to start kicking the sort of, the mechanism for Amazon to now put that up there. And it’s just, it’s need to have reviews because when other people come in there, you have the keywords and um, you know, the categories that you’ve, you’ve ranked for it. You have to have those reviews because that’s what gets people to pay attention. I buy on Amazon every single day. And of course I looked at the reviews.
Janet Beckers: Yes. Yeah, before you decided to, I love it. I think we could keep on going forever, but we’d better wrap up. This has been a little bit longer, but we’ve just honestly, you have given so many gems. I’m so grateful to you Steve, and I know everybody that’s listening. You know, if we look at the big themes that Steve shared with us today, you know, we had shared about, you know, just that whole idea of reverse engineering from your lifestyle to what am I going to do? And then also how do I begin excellence? So what can I be doing that’s going to help me to become excellent at what I’m doing? Then we’ve gone to, you know what? Sometimes, you know, sometimes alive, just, you know, the classic thing of give you lemons. So you know, you don’t have to make lemonade. You can just make, make a Margarita type stuff, you know, because you know, you know, Steve’s given me a great example of that’s what’s in that started him with this new bill with the business that he’s doing so that you know, the problems can become the wise.
And then the whole process of making the book when we’ve talked about that, you know, that more emotional side of the here’s my energy, he’s my inspiration. I’ve just got to grab it. You know, using what you do well, bringing in a whole community to support you to do that. And then also tying that in with the things that really matter for you, which is a round the music which is around, you know, helping other people who are, are they suffering from cancer and the care is like you’ve been in the, I like that whole thing. Just like what people have got so many facets to their personality. Like when you were saying Steve, while we could go everywhere, people have got so many facets to their personality. The same with your business. You know, you build a tribe and that’s not just something linear.
It’s got this whole beautiful facet and all these different parts that are in it. And you know, it’s great to involve, involve people in that whole process. So I’m so grateful that you’ve been able to take us and show us how all of that looks when you actually allow yourself to just bring all of that into get us. So my challenge to everybody here is, you know, look at those things that we’ve done the day and look at your own business, your own wise, your own passions, what works for you, what and, and what lessons can you take from this. So moving forward, one of the best fade things that you can do for Steve and for [inaudible] is to give some feedback. So that could be where ever you’re listening to this, you know, you know, we’d be very grateful for any reviews of course, but also just context eve, you know, go over to Boyd cancer.com and he’s got that contact, they’re contacting them, telling him, you know, what you loved about today. Um, and what things that you’ve taken action on what our house, cause that’s one of the most rewarding things you can do. Um, and Steve, we were talking beforehand about um, why is it that you can help people from here on in? So would you mind sharing with that? So if people want to contact you more and be part of these as well.
Steve Mastroianni: For sure. Yes. Um, so when you go to avoid cancer.com I’m underneath the video. There’s a button that you can click and I’m, there’ll be three options that pop up. There’s a by the book there is buy the album and then there’s also contact me directly. And what writing the book has a has done is actually inspired me to help experts to create a book of their own. And I just had such a blast doing it. You could see how I just light up.
Janet Beckers: Yes.
Steve Mastroianni: Want to help to, to light up and help other people achieve their bucket list goal. Because really, you know what this does, this is your legacy. I mean my life is in this book and um, and this is going to outlive me and this is something that I realized during the process and I just, those lessons, those tidbits how I feel, I want to just help other people do that. So, um, so I am, I’m currently offering a free strategy session that if you are thinking about writing a book or if you’re in the middle of writing a book, you got stuck in a Rut and you just need to be reinspired um, you know, just contact me and we’ll have a chat about it and not see what, you know, we’re where to go from there.
Janet Beckers: Yeah, that’s incredibly generous of you. So thank you so much Steve. I really, really enjoyed today and yeah, we’re going to talk a tar when we get over here. So maybe we’ll have another one with Steven. We might do like a duet jam session, zoom jam session. I love it. That would be super cool. Well, thank you so much for your time, Steve and everybody. I’m really looking forward to hearing the lessons that you came from today and share this around to anybody that you know that would really benefit from it. Hey, bye everybody.