Consider this the beginning and such it is – the beginning of my Goodreads experience as an author. To be blunt (as you’ll soon find I often am) it also includes my experience as a reader. As I posted on my personal bio, I love to read, I love to write but I don’t much like writing about my reading.
My reading about the ins and outs of Goodreads suggests I may get docked brownie points for not being more forthcoming as a reader. I get that. I’ll try to do better but it is something I am not predisposed to do.
Come April 14th, my first book “Life Insurance “Dirty Little Secrets” for Consumers Revealed” will be released. As of now it is available for preorder. As I’d like to sell a few copies, I’m making whatever rounds I can do promote it so… Goodreads.
While I sort of get the culture part of the site and such, I’m not a naturally social person so I tend to avoid social media. It’s a quirk. So sue me. I can try to change my nature but I suspect I’ll revert back to my rabbit hole tendencies eventually.
So, I thought I’d answer a few of the pending questions on the “Ask the Author”. I’ll do it here as I’m dubious as to whether anyone ever reads that stuff. Then again, I’m not sure anyone will read this post. As such I’ll also post it on my own blog where it is sure to be ignored.
Where did I come up with the idea for this book?
The idea came about as I was working selling life insurance last year. To really get an idea, one has to better understand what it is like. To that end I’ll share a bit here.
I was selling life insurance via the telephone. To do so, I rented an office in town to access the necessary broadband. I was alone in the office. For that matter the entire building was mostly empty. I called people from a batch of “leads”. These were people who indicated an interest in final expense life insurance. “Final expense” is a niche product geared towards people from age 50 to 75. They are easy to apply for and very liberal about health issues.
Now, even though these folks already indicated their interest, very few were all that motivated to buy life insurance. Many told me, they already had life insurance, likely in an effort to get rid if me. The problem was two-fold. First they already said they were interested already and second, I paid dearly for this lead. There is a third factor here: what I and many others in this industry have found is most of those who “have life insurance” do not have what they think they have. I can relate to this in a real life experience.
My closest friend here lost his wife. He was a wreck for months afterwards. She had kept track of all the bills and other finances. He finally accepted my help in sorting out his insurance policies. He said he had tons. Well he did, sort of. The trouble is all of his insurance were cheap, accidental death policies. When it came down to brass tacks, he really had nothing, especially if he died of natural causes.
I ran across countless people like him in my adventure and those were the people I was actually able to talk to. But that wasn’t the worst of it. I also came across several other types of issues with policies. I realized most people have no idea what they have or how to avoid certain problems that can destroy even a good policy.
Once I decided to bail out of this venture, I did some soul searching to find what I might do next. Now, take it, I’m older and not all that employable anymore. Plus I live in an economically depressed area where jobs are hard to find for everyone. One day, however, I came to the sudden realization I was finally in the place in my life where I could do what I always wanted to do… write. Okay well, I’ve been writing all along but now I could write books! What a revelation.
I started and finished a novel, my second, actually. My first one, written over 20 years ago, is still collecting dust in a drawer. The fact is, I do not think the time is right to publish it. The second was an idea… well I’ll leave that for another post. While I was waiting for a critique to come back for this novel, I got to thinking about my experience. I decided there were things that needed to be said.
As with most things, it began with the seed of an idea. I wrote about some of those issues I came across. These were things that have always bothered me about policies, certain practices and such that common folks like us need to know about. Then it dawned on me how helpful it would be if readers had a simple but decent overview of what is available. Finally, I realized there was a simple solution to the most pressing issue we all face – the financial burden brought by a death in the family. By this time I had a small but, I think, significant book. But I wasn’t done there.
Early on, I knew there were things I wasn’t told about as a new agent. Granted there was an overwhelming amount of information out there, but a lot of really important stuff got lost in a mountain of knowledge. So, I wrote another book for new agents. For the most part I sidestepped a lot of the things commonly taught. What I focused on were those things that were essential but few were saying. Some of these things are also stated in the consumer edition but a lot of it deals with the nuts and bolts of the business end.
So there you have it, at least the first installment. The agent book should come out at the end of April. I still haven’t finalized the release date for that. Now you know the why and a lot of the what. As for the novel, I’m thinking six months to release, though I may change my mind on that. I’m going to be looking for beta readers for that one soon. More on that in a future post.