Saturday, July 30, 2011

Free Entree at Famous Dave's Barbecue.

This is one of my occasional information posts not related to making money online but to saving money in the real world..

If you enjoy BBQ and are named David or Dave, look to eat at Famous Dave's Barbecue on August 14, 2011.

That is Dave's birthday and as a present anyone named Dave or David get to eat a free entree If your middle name is David or Dave you get an entree for half price.

For those who have never eaten at Famous Dave's read my review CLICK HERE

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Make Money at Your Local Library

In this article published on Yahoo Contributor Network, I tell you how you can make money from your local city library.

Click the link to read How to Make Money at Your Local Library

Limerick: This Five Line Verse

As a hobby I enjoy writing Limericks. The simple five line poem is not easy to write, but in writing for Yahoo Contributor Network it has provided me with some higher volume of traffic in my first few weeks.

Fast to write and publish it has allowed me to build a quick portfolio of twenty posts for viewers to see, My plan now is to work on producing less Limericks for YCN and add more solid content.

The Limericks are my pot boilers, they provide me with a little income, keep my name to the fore, allow some traffic to build from SEO and hopefully will allow my better more serious work to be recognized more quickly.

It's an old tactic, successfully used throughout his career by Steven Spielberg for one. He used to direct one or two family movies and then one movie with a message. E.T. The Extraterrestrial , Amistead. etc.

To Read My Hub on Limericks, their history and a few examples, follow this link Limerick: This Five Line Verse

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Patience was Once a Virtue

It is a noticable fact that we writers are a pretty impatient bunch. Maybe we always have been, waiting for our manuscripts to be read in the past, hanging on the postman's knock, ripping open letters of acceptance or rejection.

Today, well, we send a post to our favorite platform, in seconds there it is and we then start looking at the AdSense clock to see how many clicks we have, how much each click was worth and God forbid there is a hiccup in the system.

Then we are on the techies like a pack of ravenous wolves. Why are we not getting feedback? Why is my click rate not being measured? I need to know how many views I had in the last five minutes.

OK people. Relax, so we have technical problems. We are not in a life and death situation right at this minute, unless the stress is giving us a heart attack. Call 911 someone. Writer down!

The speed of our world as online writers has meant that we have become used to almost instant gratification. Gone are the long waits as a letter moved from place to place. Please, every letter today seems to have a tracking number included. I can see the instant it arrives at my local post office and almost tell if Charlie the mail man stopped at Starbucks for his frappacino, iced, low fat mocha latte.

We need patience back in our lives. Take a deep breath when things stall, think nice thoughts about the view outside your window.

You know having not checked your stats for the last ten minutes might be good. You might have a movement in your views instead of a single viewer, who bounces out of your article on the invention of vulcanized rubber because it was not the kind of rubber item he had in mind.

Yes folks I am in a contemplative and somewhat flippant mood today. It's summer, the sun is burning down and I just want to rest easy, by a cool lake and enjoy good company over dinner. Not stress myself into the emergency room.

Patirnce should be a virtue again.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Writer's Block

You know those days?

You sit by the computer, you go to the grocery store, to the post office, the library. You come back and stare and stare at the computer again. There is nothing. You don't have a single idea.

You long to post a new hub, a lens, a post to Yahoo Contributor Network. You sit until sweat pours from your brain and drips onto those still fingers placed upon your keyboard.

You know this is terminal. A terminal case of writer's block.

The more you try to think, the more coffee you drink, the more the cursor winks. 

Ah! The muse has struck.  :)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Creating Your HubPages Subdomain: A More Individual URL on HubPages.

Recently HubPages introduced a two click method to create a more personalized URL for your hubs.
In the past a URL might have been

Such URL's were found to penalize publishers after the Google PANDA update and so many hubbers found their traffic falling after the April Google update.

Now a hubber may go to their My Account page and click  Profile on the drop down menu. Then click on subdomain tab and you will be offered your own sub domain URL link.

My account is under the name Bretsuki so my URL's now read

When you click on your chosen subdomain the process takes a second and all your hubs and links are updated to take advantage of the new  URL.

This is hoped to increase traffic as now individual hubs will be seen as independent units, rather than a part of the whole HubPages network.

Sunday, July 17, 2011


What is Technorati?

Technorati is a blog catalogue and index.

How Can it HELP Me?

If you register an account with Technorati you can then register your blogs and webpages with the index site. Whenever you update your blog Technorati receives a ping of new content via your Atom or RSS feed and then updates its files and index to allow people searching for items of interest and direct them to your blog.

If you also link your blogs to your hubPages you can direct people from all direction to your desired pages.

Because Technorati uses RSS or Atom feeds you do not have to do any work other than register the blog with the index site. All further updates are automatic after that.

Technorati also receives search engine requests and so if a search engine misses you on its own search your updates are passed on by ?Technorati.

The indexing site is free to join, registering blogs takes a few minutes, you need to provide URL's for the main page and also the feed, add tags and select areas where you see your viewers coming from.

You then submit a claim and receive a claim token, a series of numbers and letters which you place on the blog for technorati to crawl. When they find the token they then check the claim manually and in a few days or weeks the claim is processed and your position in the index is updated.

For you as a publisher it is a win, win situation. You gain SEO visibility, increased traffic and hopefully increased revenue for little work other than the original set up, plus updating your blogs.

Try it and see.

To Create a Technorati account CLICK HERE!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Use RSS Feeds to increase traffic across websites and pages.

As you increase your numbers of pages, with HubPages, Squidoo and your blog posts you should consider Really Simple Syndication(RSS).
For a while now I have used RSS feeds from my HubPages account to feed to this blog. It initially increased my traffic to my HubPages account by 10%. That is a good return for two minutes work setting up an RSS feed. Of course without a twin site with no RSS feed I cannot tell the effect on subsequent viewing figures.

Today I entered a new phase, linking some of my blogs to relevent hubs. Those hubs will now receive an updated through my RSS feeds as I add to my blogs.

Blog traffic on some blogs has increased ten fold in a few short hours. This blog hasn't seen that increase but it has doubled its viewers.

These views may also not be human views, they may be a rush of "Spiders" checking for relevence But spiders are good because they mean the Search Engines are following the links. Increasing SEO.

We will need to see if the spike of views today mean an increase of voews in the long term.

I will keep you posted on this technique.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

First Improved Squidoo Lens

My first Lens, publication, on Squidoo was a bit of a rushed affair. It was ok as a first attempt but after three weeks I felt I knew enough to go back and improve on the original.

Luckily this was easy to do. The modular design rather like HubPages does allow you to quickly adapt your articles.

You can also as you gain points add modules and widgets to your article so it is to your benefit to consider increasing the user value by adding some of the items you have access too.

My latest widget was an Amazon widget. OK so does that work if I am in California?
To be honest I don't know but I added a couple anyway. I want to create a page for the reader, Amazon have a product, so in my view I may as well learn how to use a widget and give readers the choice, even though I now personally cannot benefit. Maybe you might see that as hypocritical of me? I would be interested to know what you think?

Playing with new lens capsules also adds photograph elements and increased discussion areas.

I like the point system that Squidoo use. Basic programs and capsules are available to the beginner. As you visit you gain points, as you comment you gain points and as you add tools you gain points. Points add levels and levels give you a higher level of interface options.

In short as you use and learn, you gain more options so increasing your ability to produce high quality articles. This prevents the initial shock of too many tools being used too quickly in a jumble of unco-ordinated capsules spoiling your work. Or the shock of too many options too soon scaring you into writers paralysis. as you wonder. How do I use this program?

To see my newly edited Squidoo lens on Gadgets for the visually impaired CLICK HERE!

Monday, July 11, 2011

History Files: "Peterloo" Manchester August 1819.

As the days of summer proceed towards August, I generally ask myself.

"What would it have been like to have been in Market Street, Manchester on the afternoon of August 16, 1819?

That date and time are perhaps synonamous with one of the most infamous and despicable events of English political history. The crowd of 60,000 mill workers from Cheshire and Lancashire mill towns had made their way to Market Street and St. Peter's Field by the Manchester Quaker Meeting House to here Henry "Orator" Hunt speak against taxes on food including the "Corn Laws" and call for universal male suffrage.

The charge of the Manchester & Salford Yeomanry, sabres drawn hacking, slashing and dripping blood into the crowd is told on this page.

Read the story of "Peterloo"

History Files: "Peterloo" Manchester August 1819.

Will there be a Tax Referendum in California? Amazon latest today, backed a referendum call for California voters to remove the tax legislation from the books over the next year.
It was widely reported from Sacremento today that California legislators may face their recent online tax legislation being disapproved in a popular referendum. Amazon at the end of last week filed a paper proposing removal of the law by popular ballot sometime next year.

The proposal was accepted by the State government last week and now faces a preliminary vote where nearly 450,000 Californians need to support the proposal or proposition. If this number of supporters is raised the proposal will or should be written up for application on the November 2012 ballot.

Given the current situation, this proposal will, even if it passes, mean many California affilliates will have been without Amazon for over one year, there is little possibility of a stay of execution in anticipation of the proposal succeeding. With over a year of lost business many California affilliates will possibly not survive.

This is a good step for to have taken. I will look forward to supporting the proposal during the next few months.

Given that many Californians already feel they are oppressed I think the proposal could succede. Though many proposals for extended sales tax finance proposals are also on the books for re proposition. In my own county, Fresno, we have a Measure B proposal which supports the public library system up for a continuation proposal. Even though the Public Library system is a popular system to support, continued support of Measure B is unlikely. This will turn a very small percentage of sales tax back to county coffers for other items.

The proposal could face one problem.

In its original tax legislation, sales tax in California was to be reduced by 1% with the decrease being filled with the online taxes.
State legislators could demand an increase in overall sales tax to levels above  the June 2010 level in part to compensate the state for lost revenue and in part to punish or disuade the voters from accepting the abolision proposition.

Financial Times Report

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Creativity Acknowledged

Sometimes, we writers not only need to receive validation from our peers. Sometimes we need to have our work supported by the validity of cold hard cash.
A few days ago I created a poem for Yahoo Contributor Network. Called "The Moon's a Piece of Cheese" it is a nonsense poem but it was the first poem I have had accepted by another for payment.

This is the story:

Creativity Acknowledged

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Amazon Affilliates: A Conspiracy Theory

In a world full of conspiracy theories, admit it there everywhere on the internet and in the media.

How about a new one involving the Amazon affilliates, California government and Amazon's bottom line.

The conspiracy goes.

Amazon is rapidly moving away from its affilliates. The company has found it valuable to move into electronic media, MP3 downloads and the massively successful Kindle e-book market and now video on demand. These items have massive profit potential and Amazon likes that. Up until now they have been out of reach of affilliates, the affilliate may link to such media but receive no commission payment for the sale.

Well the company sees the backlash of future payments when affilliates realise the matter and amid falling revenues from traditional items, books, hardware etc they demand payment for the new media. Well Amazon's margins are tight on those items anyway, but as they announced a few weeks ago, Kindle book sales now exceed traditional book sales.
The affilliates are losing their incomes anyway.

So along comes the California legislature, broke, unpopular with many, a shambles at best, but with a nugget of gold in their budget law. Not a nugget of gold for the affilliates.

The legislature agree to enforce sales tax legislation. Put the Bill to be enacted and Amazon see the nugget fall into their lap.

Now Amazon scream foul. The out of state big box companies want to destroy us, this is an unconstitutional move. By the way all you CA affilliates are dumped.

Amazon look good they stand up for the over taxed American consumer, they get a dig at WalMart and Best Buy, they also look slyly at their bottom line. All that affilliate pressure that they would have had to deal with over the electronic media sales has just disappeared from California. 100,000 lots of 4% possible claims for commission has just disappeared from the bottom line.
Profits rise with no affilliate payments.

So who gains? Not the California affilliates, not the California legislature but no-one really cares about those two groups anyway.

But Amazon comes out winning on both sides of the equation!

Either someone at Amazon did think of this already or I bet they wish they had.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Dark T-Shirt Men's Shirts Tweet Me Bretsuki

One of my most popular pages on HubPages was "Gettysburg Ghost Photograph"

I have also created a collection of tee-shirts and items using the photograph.

This is a link to the best selling item of the collection please feel free to come by and browse.

Dark T-Shirt Men's Shirts Tweet Me Bretsuki