Today's Kindle Book Deals

Sign up for BuckBooks email notices. Their 99-cent and free selections are excellent.

Today's Free Kindle Books on Amazon:

Here are's free e-books for today. If you're a KDP author, you can get your books listed on thousands of websites who promote Amazon's Kindle freebies... like this. You'll find more Kindle Publishing help on this page.




Keyboard Symbols for Wingding and Dingbat Fonts

Wingding Symbol Examples



Wingdings usually come free with Word and Publisher. Here are common symbols you might find useful. 

Don't forget to change your text font to "Wingdings."

!  Pencil is Alt, 0, 3, 3

"  Scissors is Alt, 0, 3, 4

,  Mailbox is Alt, 0, 4, 4

?  Hand writing is Alt, 0, 6, 3

J  Smiley face is Alt, 0, 7, 4

[  Yin-Yang is Alt, 0, 9, 1

k  Ampersand is Alt, 0, 1, 0, 7

o  Check box is Alt, 0, 1, 1, 1

v  Bullet is Alt, 0, 1, 1, 8

w  Small bullet is Alt, 0, 1, 1, 9

¹  Clock is Alt, 0, 1, 8, 5

Ï  Divider is Alt, 0, 2, 0, 7

§  Bullet is Alt, 0, 1, 6, 7


Zapf Dingbats Font Examples

You might have to buy the Dingbats font, if you don't have it already.

Here are some great characters for flyers and print ads using the Dingbats font. Dingbats come with some software programs, so check your fonts drop-down box before you buy more Dingbats.

Don't forget to change the font you're working in to "Dingbats" first. Sorry, the Dingbat graphics aren't available for viewing on this blog.

Heart is Alt 0, 1, 6, 4

Heart is Alt 0, 1, 7, 0

Divider heart is Alt, 0, 1, 6, 6

Divider heart is Alt, 0, 1, 6, 7

Scissors is Alt, 0, 3, 4 (for coupon cutting)

Checkmark is Alt, 0, 5, 2

X Checkmark is Alt, 0, 0, 5, 6

Star is Alt, 0, 7, 2

Check Box is Alt, 0, 1, 1, 1

Arrow is Alt, 0, 2, 2, 0

Diamond Bullet is Alt, 0, 1, 1, 7





How to Make Music Notes with Text Fonts

Musical notes and characters you can make with common text fonts: Courier, Arial, Times New Roman.



Musical Note: Eighth

Alt, 1, 3 for Print

U+266A (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9834 followed by ; for HTML

Musical Note: Two Eighth Notes

Alt, 1, 4 for Print

U+266B (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9835 followed by ; for HTML

Musical Note: Quarter

Alt, 9, 8, 3, 3 for Print

U+2669 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9833 followed by ; for HTML

Musical Note: Two Sixteenth Notes

Alt, 9, 8, 3, 6 for Print

U+266C (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9836 followed by ; for HTML

Flat Sign

Alt, 9, 8, 3, 7 for Print

U+266D (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9837 followed by ; for HTML


Alt, 9, 8, 3, 8 for Print

U+266E (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9838 followed by ; for HTML


Alt, 9, 8, 3, 9 for Print

U+266F (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9839 followed by ; for HTML




How to Make Dingbats and Arrows Using Common Text Fonts

Create Fun Graphics with Arial and Times New Roman



If you need some cool bullets, arrows and other Dingbat style graphics, but you don't have the Wingding or Zapf Dingbat fonts installed on your computer, here's how you can make them using Times New Roman, Arial and other common text fonts.

They don't however usually work with Verdana and other fonts designed for web use.

Alt Key symbols work best in print materials and often on your website, but not in emails. HTML codes will generally show up on web pages.

(1) For Alt Key symbols, hold the Alt Key, then press the numbers in succession, while still holding down the Alt key.

(2) For Unicode symbols, type capital letter U, then the plus sign (+) and next the numbers and letters shown in succession. Then hold down the Alt Key and press lower case letter x. Let up the Alt Key.

(3) For HTML codes, type the Ampersand symbol followed by the Number sign - - and then type the numbers in order - followed by a semi-colon.

White Smiley Face

Alt, 1 for Print

U+263A (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9786 followed by ; for HTML

Black Smiley Face

Alt, 2 for Print

U+263B (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9787 followed by ; for HTML

This graphic is the "black smiley face" with blue fill and orange outline - Arial Font, Alt, 2



Alt, 1, 5 for Print

U+263C (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9788 followed by ; for HTML

Female Symbol

Alt, 1, 2 for Print

U+2640 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9792 followed by ; for HTML

Male Symbol

Alt, 1, 1 for Print

U+2642 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9794 followed by ; for HTML


Alt, 6 for Print

U+2660 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9824 followed by ; for HTML


Alt, 5 for Print

U+2663 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9827 followed by ; for HTML


Alt, 3 for Print

U+2665 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9829 followed by ; for HTML


Alt, 4 for Print

U+2666 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9830 followed by ; for HTML

Black Triangle/Pyramid

Alt, 3, 0 for Print

U+25B2 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9650 followed by ; for HTML

Black Triangle Pointing Down

Alt, 3, 1 for Print

U+25BC (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9660 followed by ; for HTML

Black Square White Circle

Alt, 8 for Print

U+25D8 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9688 followed by ; for HTML

Inverse White Circle

Alt, 1, 0 for Print

U+25D9 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9689 followed by ; for HTML

Black Square

Alt, 9, 6, 3, 2 for Print

U+25A0 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9632 followed by ; for HTML

White Square □

Alt, 9, 6, 3, 3 for Print

U+25A1 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#9633 followed by ; for HTML

Up Arrow ↑

Alt, 2, 4 for Print

U+2191 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#8593 followed by ; for HTML

Down Arrow ↓

Alt, 2, 5 for Print

U+2193 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#8595 followed by ; for HTML

Right-Pointing Arrow →

Alt, 2, 6 for Print

U+2192 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#8594 by followed ; for HTML

Left-Pointing Arrow ←

Alt, 2, 7 for Print

U+2190 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#8592 followed by ; for HTML

Left-Right Arrow ↔

Alt, 2, 9 for Print

U+2194 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#8596 followed by ; for HTML

Up-Down Arrow ↕

Alt, 1, 8 for Print

U+2195 (Alt, x) for Unicode

&#8597 followed by ; for HTML




How to Make French, German and Spanish Accents - Using the Alt Key

List and Instructions for Making French, German and Spanish Accented Letters on Your Computer Keyboard

Hold down the Alt key, then type in 0 (zero), followed by the last three numbers - using the numeric keypad on the right of your keyboard. Then you can let up the Alt key.


¡ - 0161
¿ - 0191
À - 0192
Á - 0193
 - 0194
à - 0195
Ä - 0196
Å - 0197
Æ - 0198
Ç - 0199
È - 0200
É - 0201
Ê - 0202
Ë - 0203
Ì - 0204
Í - 0205
Î - 0206
Ï - 0207
Ð - 0208
Ñ - 0209
Ò - 0210
Ó - 0211
Ô - 0212
Õ - 0213
Ö - 0214
Ø - 0216
Ù - 0217
Ú - 0218
Û - 0219
Ü - 0220
Ý - 0221
Þ - 0222
ß - 0223
à - 0224
á - 0225
â - 0226
ã - 0227
ä - 0228
å - 0229
æ - 0230
ç - 0231
è - 0232
é - 0233
ê - 0234
ë - 0235
ì - 0236
í - 0237
î - 0238
ï - 0239
ð - 0240
ñ - 0241
ò - 0242
ó - 0243
ô - 0244
õ - 0245
ö - 0246
ù - 0249
ú - 0250
û - 0251
ü - 0252
ý - 0253
þ - 0254
ÿ - 0255



Practice your Alt Key symbols on popular French sayings

Place your curser where you want the accented letter and use the Alt Key + numbers as indicated.

  • bête noir – a person or thing strongly detested or avoided; literally “black beast” (ê – 0234)
  • chacun à son goût – everyone to his own taste (à – 0224; û – 0251)
  • coup de grâce – a stroke of mercy, a decisive finishing blow (â – 0226)
  • coup d’état – a sudden, decisive exercise of force in politics (é – 0233)
  • pièce de résistance – a showpiece; the chief dish of a meal (è – 0232; é – 0233)
  • raison d’être – reason for being (ê – 0234)
  • tête-à-tête – a private conversation between two people (ê – 0234; à – 0224)





How Did Barbara Casey Become The Tutorial Lady?

I Became The Tutorial Lady Kind Of By Accident


I did not set out to have a career as The Tutorial Lady. My tutorial writing started because of a need I noticed and so I just took it upon myself to fill it... with a how-to tutorial.

It all started back in 1994, when I bought a rather early version of CorelDraw to make graphics for a holistic directory I was publishing. Included with the software was a sheet of Alt Key shortcuts.

Whoa! Here was a way to make the copyright symbol, which I absolutely needed for book publishing. And there was the shortcut for bullets! And French accents! I felt like I had entered a secret room which not many people knew about... back in 1994.

I had a whole page of keyboard symbols that made life so much easier and, meanwhile, everyone else was using asterisks for bullets and apostrophes for acute accents.

Here's what happened next...

I started making e-book tutorials to sell

I went on to edit and publish 5 editions of the Directory between 1995 and 2002, when the internet took over as the go-to reference resource for metaphysical and holistic practitioners.

But I hung on to the sheet of keyboard symbols that whole time.

Between the shortcuts on the CorelDraw list and more I discovered on my own, I had enough material to make a 2-page PDF list containing 300 Alt Key symbols, which I sold for 99 cents on my website. I also made a web page which included the most frequently requested Alt Key symbols. This was back in in 2006.

Then I added two more tutorials: Word Flyer Design and Curing Spelling Amnesia.


Curing Spelling Amnesia

More PDFs and website tutorials... and a new brand is born

In the meantime, I had acquired many clients for whom I designed flyers for their classes and workshops. I typically created the flyers in CorelDraw or Microsoft Publisher, which are pretty good desktop design tools.

But most folks wanted to save money and update their own workshop information by changing dates, times and places themselves. In other words, they wanted their flyers created in Microsoft Word.

So I went through every step of creating a flyer in Word 2003 and posted the instructions in great detail on my website in 2007. I eventually put this tutorial on Squidoo (now HubPages) and added Word versions 2007 and 2010, as each new one came along. I made a PDF report for that tutorial, too.

And don't even get me started on spelling bloopers. I got so frustrated reading it's when its was called for. Ditto for the confusion people were experiencing with your and you're. Another tutorial was the result. See a need and fill it... that's all I did.


It dawned on me that I should really "brand" myself, based on what I was doing and so I became "The Tutorial Lady." I now have numerous tutorials on my blogs and HubPages.

I have since returned all three tutorials (which had been at various times on my website, this blog, Squidoo and HubPages) back "home" to this blog

Fast forward a few years...

3 of my tutorials are available for Kindle at!

In November 2011, I uploaded my first Kindle e-book to Amazon and, in January, two more tutorials followed. Even though you can see most of the same information for free on my Tutorial Lady blog tutorials, a lot of people like to have their how-to lessons handy. If you need a quick look to see if its or it's is correct, all you have to do is grab your Kindle.

So I now have Kindle e-books for: Keyboard SymbolsWord Flyer Design, and Curing Spelling Amnesia.



Keyboard Symbols List and Instructions Tutorial

AltKeyCoverBorder235How to Make Keyboard Symbols Using Alt Key, HTML and Unicode Characters

Here is a handy list of Alt Key, HTML and Unicode symbols you can make with standard text fonts on your computer keyboard with how-to instructions to make it easy.

It helps if you have a numeric keypad, but if you don't there are two other methods you can use for making French, Spanish and German accents, copyright symbols, m-dashes, real bullets and oodles more.

Years ago, I started collecting shortcut codes for characters that don't appear on my computer keyboard. I was publishing print books at the time and really needed to know how to make the copyright sign, a proper ellipsis, bullets, and "n" and "m" dashes.

When I created the first tutorial on my website in 2006, my symbols all used the Alt Key and numeric keypad. I didn't know much about HTML codes back then.

Over the years, I added to my list of useful shortcuts and eventually had enough to create an extensive tutorial. My tutorial has been on, Squidoo, HubPages, and is now back on the Tutorial Lady blog. 

In this tutorial, you'll learn how to make cool and useful characters and non-English letters using: (1) the Insert function in Microsoft Word and Publisher, (2) The Character Map for copying and pasting symbols into your document, (3) the original Alt Key shortcuts and (4) HTML and Unicode signs for the most requested symbols.




Three ways for creating keyboard symbols


Microsoft Word includes an "insert" function that makes it very easy to add text characters such as copyright, French accents - you name it.

If you're working in Word 2003, look first at the top of the screen. You'll see these headings: File, Edit, View, Insert, Format, etc. Click on "Insert" and on the drop-down list, click on "Symbol." When the box pops up, click on the symbol you want to insert into your text, then click on the insert button and close the box.

In Word 2007 and 2010, click on the Insert tab, then click on the symbol icon (at the far right). A small box pops up which shows a few characters and the words "More Symbols." Click on that and then a bigger box pops up with all kinds of cool characters, depending on which font you have open.


You can also copy and paste the required symbols using the Character Map, which can be found by clicking on the Windows Start Menu, then All Programs, then Accessories, System Tools and Character Map. The Character Map box pops up.

Choose the font you wish to use from the drop-down menu at the top. Place your cursor where you'd like to insert the symbol, click on the one you wish to insert, click on the Select Button, then the Copy Button and then paste the character onto your page (using Edit, Paste or the "Control v" shortcut). You'll also see the Alt Key shortcut at the bottom of the Character Map, for future reference.


Turn on NumLock if it isn't already selected.

Using the numeric keypad, press the Alt key, and then the numbers (in succession) shown below for the symbol you want to use. For example for © Copyright, hold down Alt, press the number 0, then press the numbers 1, 6, 9. Now you can let up the Alt key.


 If you don't have a numeric keypad, you'll need to use either the insert function or Character Map method... or try the Unicode characters or HTML numeric codes. A number of these are shown below so you can see what works best for you.




The most frequently requested keyboard symbols

Alt Key shortcuts work best with common text fonts: Arial, Courier New and Times New Roman

(1) Creating Alt Key symbols in Windows
Using the numeric keypad on the right side of your keyboard - with NumLock on - press the Alt Key and the numbers shown in succession. After that, let up the Alt Key.

(2) How to insert Unicode characters
First type the capital letter U, then the plus sign (+) and next the numbers and letters shown - in succession. Then you hold down the Alt Key and press lower case letter x. Then let up the Alt Key.

(3) Using HTML Numeric Codes
Type the Ampersand symbol first, followed by the Number sign - - and then type the numbers in order - followed by a semi-colon.

Copyright ©
Alt, 0, 1, 6, 9 for Print
U+00A9 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#169 followed by ; for HTML

Trademark ™
Alt, 0, 1, 5, 3 for Print
U+2122 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#8482 followed by ; for HTML

Bullet •
Alt, 0, 1, 4, 9 for Print
U+2022 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#8226 followed by ; for HTML

Ellipsis …
Alt, 0, 1, 3, 3 for Print
U+2026 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#8230 followed by ; for HTML

EM Dash —
Alt, 0, 1, 5, 1 for Print
U+2014 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#8212 followed by ; for HTML

Paragraph (Pilcrow) ¶
Alt, 0, 1, 8, 2 for Print
U+00B6 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#182 followed by ; for HTML

Pound Sign £
Alt 0, 1, 6, 3 for Print
U+00A3 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#163 followed by ; for HTML

Cent Sign ¢
Alt, 0, 1, 6, 2 for Print
U+00A2 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#162 followed by ; for HTML

One-half ½
Alt, 0, 1, 8, 9 for Print
U+00BD (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#189 followed by ; for HTML

French accent a grave – à
Alt, 0, 2, 2, 4 for Print
U+00E0 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#224 followed by ; for HTML

French accent e grave – è
Alt, 0, 2, 3, 2 for Print
U+00E8 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#232 followed by ; for HTML

French accent e acute – é
Alt, 0, 2, 3, 3 for Print
U+00E9 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#233 followed by ; for HTML

Spanish accent n tilde – ñ
Alt, 0, 2, 4, 1 for Print
U+00F1 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#241 followed by ; for HTML

Alt, 3 for Print
U+2665 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#9829 followed by ; for HTML

Degree Sign °
Alt, 0, 1, 7, 6 for Print
U+00B0 (Alt, x) for Unicode
&#176 followed by ; for HTML


Click here for a printable list of keyboard symbols useful for writers.


My tutorial with 150 Alt Key, HTML and Unicode Symbols is available for Kindle. Here's the Amazon link.



© 2006-2015 Barbara Casey

Recession-Proof Your Business Tutorial

How Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs can help you design a stronger business niche

Are you a small or home-based business owner? Then you have a definite edge over the corporate giants when the economy falters. In this tutorial, you'll learn ways to re-focus your business quickly so you are offering what people want, need - and are willing to pay for - during recessionary times. Prompt action of this type could save your business, in other words.

The idea for a tutorial called Recession-Proofing Your Business grew out of an article I wrote for my newsletter a couple of months after 9/11/01. You'll remember the financial backlash that happened in the months following September 11, when fear was gripping the country and people canceled vacation plans and cut down on all kinds of non-essential spending. Big businesses cut thousands of jobs and the economic talk was generally negative.

It occurred to me that as small and home-based business owners, we could turn our own businesses around more quickly than the multi-nationals could. After all, a committee of one doesn't get much argument.


Enter Abraham Maslow... and his Hierarchy of Needs

You've probably heard of Abraham Maslow. He was a psychologist who suggested that we each have what he called a "needs hierarchy" which essentially tracks our life cycle from birth to maturity.

In my article, I used the example of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs as a way to find ways we could re-position our home business in order to fill needs people were having RIGHT THEN. When fear and money were big issues. When people stopped spending on discretionary items and stuck with the essentials.

General, philosophic, feel-good topics were not speaking to people's desperation. Survival and a sense of belonging were more to the point. You remember seeing Congress singing "God Bless America" on the steps of the Capitol? THAT's the kind of belonging we're talking about. And a back-to-basics, meat and potatoes kind of economy.

When people are struggling with fear and wondering how they're going to feed their family next month, they're not in a mindset to be learning new things, especially when what they really want is help with a specific problem they have right now - like the price of gas.

In times of economic uncertainty, such as now, and after 9/11, it makes sense to focus on essentials, rather than on the esoteric. On the other hand, people who are not bothered by the economy and do have the luxury of time and cash - may be the ideal clients for what you are offering.

It's all in how you present your offer.

So here are a few ideas to try on - and see how they could be re-worked for your own business.

In the next section, you'll find a graphic for the ladder analogy I'll be using throughout this tutorial. It helps us picture this hierarchy more easily. Also, it's important to remember that we're not motivated by the "higher" needs until the basic ones at the bottom of the ladder have been filled. On the other hand, all of the needs keep recurring, so we're up and down the needs ladder quite a bit.

Survival (Food, Clothing, Shelter, Water)

Here's How to Kick a "Survival" Business Up a Notch

The first need Maslow identified, which I'm calling the "bottom rung" are Survival needs... food, water, clothing and shelter. Things you absolutely have to have to function.

So here's my question:

How could you reposition your business to represent a survival need that people have right now? Without pandering to their fears, I mean.

If you're in a health-related business, one way is to become an expert on toxin-free, organic foods or clothing. I'm also pretty sure people would come to your workshops and teleclasses on organic gardening, now that the price of food is going through the roof. (Do-it-ourselves food production.) Or you could get on your soapbox about green buildings and building materials. We're still talking about survival needs, but just kicking them up a notch.

Have you ever seen those community garden plots here and there, where people stake out their little section of vegetables? If you have enough space and parking, you could charge a fee and teach people how to grow their own organic stuff, right on the spot. Or start a local vegan or vegetarian cooking club. Teach what you know, make it easy to learn and sell the videos afterward... or upload them to YouTube to promote your vegetarian recipes e-book.

What about water? There are many opportunities in the water business - selling filtration systems, energized water, ionized water and such.

If you have these on a website, you can join's associate program (it's free) and offer Dr. Emoto's books at the same time. It's kind of a neat tie-in. We need water to survive..... again, we're kicking it up a notch.

The Hidden Messages in Water by Masaru Emoto

This is how a need gets kicked up a notch. We need water to drink, but here's a lesson on how to give your water a higher vibration.

If you saw the movie "What the Bleep," you'll know how our thoughts and words can influence the molecules in water... both positively and negatively.

Can you teach people to infuse their water with positive energy? How could you improve the water we use to sprinkle on our gardens? Lots of potential here for a very interesting business.


Homesteading... The Ultimate Rung 1 Survival Method

Homesteading has become the new way to live... especially if you want to survive in comfort, with fresh fruits and veggies... not to mention your own eggs and milk. And it doesn't matter whether you live in city or country anymore, either.

What can you teach folks about organic gardening, selling eggs, making clothes from alpaca yarn?

I bought a book called The Weekend Homesteader for myself because I'm in my late 60s now and not quite up to planting acres of food. But I can learn to implement a project a week and become relatively self-sufficient within a year. (I hope!) I haven't had the book very long and I'll need to adapt some of the lessons to the hot, semi-tropical climate of Florida. Not sure how well drying food on the front seat of my car will work when the inside temperature is probably 120 degrees and the air is muggy. I'll write a review on this book when I get further into it.

Comfort and Security

Okay, let's take a look at Rung Two on Maslow's ladder - the need for Comfort and Security.

If you're a coach who currently offers the more general "life coaching," you might now want to specialize in something people are more desperate for - and also willing to pay for. Career coaching comes to mind. I know a coach, Sue Koch, who specializes in helping clients get out of the rat race and into their own business. She calls it designing exit strategies for corporate rats ( She's helping her clients stay secure financially with a plan that doesn't let them run out of money before their business is established.

Healers are in the comfort and security business.

Reiki Masters can teach ways for parents to keep their kids secure health-wise. Massage therapists are definitely in the comfort business, but to my way of thinking, they're also in the security business, because they help people maintain good health at a reasonable price, saving potentially thousands of dollars in medical bills. A relaxed body heals faster than a tense body. Massage therapists can also sell themselves as the key health professionals for people with no health insurance... for this same reason. Relaxation is great preventive medicine.

Let's look at prosperity coaches, and prosperity teachers and authors. After our basic needs are met, most of us don't want to be scrambling paycheck to paycheck to replace our food, shelter, water and clothing. So learning money multiplication skills is a necessity for our security - whether it's done through savings plans, investing groups, visualization courses, or Law of Attraction lessons. If you want to see how securing finances can be done with high vibration tools, check out Carole Dore's The Emergency Handbook for Getting Money Fast. Carole is the best I've come across in this field.

Now what about spiritual teachers? They don't just talk about Universal laws or personal development or some technique or other that they've learned. They are teaching people to be secure within themselves so they don't give way to fear or even to mental enslavement to the status quo, to other people's ideas, to jobs they hate, or to whatever else isn't working in their life.

The language you use to market this service at this 2nd rung level of need must speak of "security" and not self-realization, which is a different need altogether. It depends where the person is on the ladder of needs at the particular point in their life.

Giving and Receiving Love, Community, Making Friends, A Sense of Belonging


Now we're at the third rung of our needs ladder - giving and receiving love, making friends, community, a sense of belonging.

You know all the social networking sites - Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Squidoo, MySpace and so on... these are all catering to third rung needs. You can see how urgent a need this is right now, too, from the immense popularity of these sites.

My understanding is that a fellow named Tim O'Reilly coined the phrase Web 2.0 to describe - and lump - all of these interactive, joining-type internet media into a category. And the rate at which new ones keep popping up tells a pretty powerful story about our need to belong, our need to be seen, to be heard and to feel a part of something. Look at YouTube. Anyone, absolutely anyone, can be visible on YouTube. All you need is a video camera and a computer. And a little knowledge of uploading.

But, how do you turn this into a repositioned business for yourself? If you have the ways and means of helping people figure out how to belong in these networking places... or how to make themselves "presentable" on these sites, you have a business in the making. Maybe you can figure out how to make and upload YouTube videos with an iPhone or with one of the easy and cheap video cameras readily available. Then you teach this in language that people can understand, with lots of visual clues.

If you're a speaker and workshop presenter, you could also be teaching presentation skills in your class on making YouTube videos. If you're an energy worker, you could be teaching people how to project their energy in these videos... which chakras to clear and which ones to energize. If you're a writer, you can help people write their scripts. The whole idea is helping people not feel like a fish out of water - out of their element - insecure - while they're learning the ropes of these new media. You don't want them to drop down to rung two while you're teaching them something related to rung three, in other words.

Before the advent of Facebook, Yahoo Groups offered another type of belonging. They still do, but with Facebook groups now more prevalent, you'll find most of what you are looking for there. If you have a following... or want to attract a larger following for your business, nowadays you have to have a Facebook fan page or group.




Respect, Reputation, Status in the Community

We're now at the 4th rung where we want respect, and where we're concerned about our reputation and status in the community.

One of the ways you could help people with this need is to help them create a social networking profile that doesn't look like your adolescent kid's.

Here's another 4th rung idea. If you teach folks how to be confident speaking in public, you'll find people who need your service. And by confident, I mean, so they don't look and feel stupid or unprepared. One of the best courses I've taken is one called "platform decorum." It's all about how to project your ideas in front of a group of people. I'm essentially an introvert, a writer, not a speaker. Had I not taken that class, I probably wouldn't have started teaching teleclasses.

So, if you have those types of skills that you can teach, then you'll want to speak to the needs for status and reputation. Again, for business people who want to gain publicity through YouTube, you could be a valuable resource, to help them with poise and naturalness.

Are you a writer? Can you edit other people's writing? Article writing is a major way to get known on the internet. But a lot of people balk, because their level of writing may detract somewhat from the expertise of their "real" work. So here's where a talented editor can make a good living... polishing the articles of a business owner who wants to build his or her stature as an expert in their field.

Can you teach Neurolinguistic Programming? It seems to me this is an underused tool for helping people to polish their language and communication skills - and gain more respect in their field.

Self Actualization, Inner Meaning, Self Fulfillment



We've finally reached the top rung of Maslow's ladder of needs. Again, the other needs have to be more or less filled before you can tackle this 5th rung. But if you choose a target audience that is financially stable, that has solved their belonging needs and that is pretty secure in their reputation and standing in their field, then you can help them with the bigger picture.

Self-actualization, inner meaning and self-fulfillment.

One caveat... if you try to teach or facilitate this stuff before they're ready, they'll say it doesn't work... or that you're a lousy teacher - in which case YOUR reputation and standing will be lowered. So use this language and speak to these needs only to an audience that is primed for it.

But when you find that group of people, you help elevate them to the stars.

For example, can you help people picture their soul mission? People who have a need for inner meaning have probably had a good life materially, but may now be at that empty nest stage when they are ready to explore their inner self. They may have had an inkling about it earlier in life, but with jobs, kids, aging parents - what have you - their own self fulfillment always took a back seat. If you teach something they're looking for and can find these folks in enough numbers, what a glorious business you can make for yourself.

Do you teach self-empowerment that goes farther than survival, security, a sense of belonging and being respected by others? This is spiritual power, a tricky concept, but the ultimate one. Do you help people connect with their Higher Self? At this level, you'll find not only people who know what you're talking about, you'll also come across others who have reached the 5th rung... but don't have the metaphysical or spiritual education to understand what a higher self is, never mind connect with it. They may have just got there naturally. Again, you need to know your audience. Who do you want to work with? These are not people desperate for money. They've got that figured out. But they are desperate to feel that their life has meaning.

We all know (maybe we all are) people who "get" the concepts of inner meaning and self-realization, but we haven't secured our money rung yet. What do you do then, if you want to teach about self-fulfillment? It's not going to be internalized if we're worried about putting food on the table or buying gas. Fear, anxiety, and other emotions that lower vibration are going to inhibit that clear sense of God-consciousness that we're aiming for. So this is one instance where you might have to work on two levels - or rungs - at the same time. I know some teachers - and students - in this situation. Struggling with rung two - security - while trying to live at number 5 - inner meaning. What could you do to solve this dilemma? If you can figure it out... you've got a humdinger business solution for recessionary times.

Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs "Ladder" - On which rung does your business best fit?


Summing Up

Now, to really capitalize on these ideas I've mentioned, I feel it's important to pick one area - or rung - of the needs ladder and get well known for solving a problem or issue associated with it. This can get you word-of-mouth buzz and it will be easier to create a more solid-feeling presence because you're not all over the map. People will know what you stand for and they can order your products and services when they're ready for them.

The other thing to remember is that people with desperate needs are the people who are ready to buy your products and services. Until you're pushed to the wall, especially when finances are tight, you tend to not open your wallet.

Philosophically and practically speaking, getting from rung one to two leads you past rung one and a half, which is where you can establish higher-level food/clothing/shelter and water businesses - such as the vegetarian cooking classes I mentioned. We're still dealing with survival issues, but on a higher level. Here survival is not so much about finding food, but about staying alive longer by keeping toxins and fats out of our bodies, rather than scrambling for our next meal.

At the other end of the spectrum, people don't usually begin an intensive search for meaning - or God - until some crisis strikes or they feel so out of sorts - one of my teachers called it divine discontent - that they feel they have no choice but to venture inward for their answers. You probably know tons of people like this. Again, it's the need that spurred them to take classes, devour books, watch "The Secret" and so on.

People have built successful businesses helping others move from crisis to inner peace. And it's not to say anyone is being taken advantage of in a bad - or needy - situation. It's just that at a certain point in our lives, we have these needs and we look for answers. If you're Johnny-on-the-spot with an answer for their need, you're hired!

A Few More Spelling and Grammar Tips

Her Style Was Most Unique... NOT!

A common usage mistake in English is to use the word "unique" in a way that makes the noun it modifies seem not unique.

When we say "most unique" or "very unique" about something, what we're really saying is the thing isn't unique at all. The word "unique" means something is without equal or there is nothing else like it. So there is no "uniquer" option. A thing is either unique or it isn't. There is no continuum for uniqueness.

We wouldn't say, "Joey wore the most unique Halloween costume," implying it was just a tad "more unique" than someone else's. We'd say, "Joey wore a unique Halloween costume." It's giving credit where credit is due, so to speak.


Dangling Modifiers - Ack!

If you're a writer, and not getting Bob Bly's newsletter, it's worth checking out at

Here's a tip from Bob's ezine about dangling modifiers - you know, when you start a sentence talking about one person and slide in a reference that refers to someone else altogether... and then end the sentence referring back to the first individual.

For example:

WRONG: "As a policyholder, I want you to know that you can reduce your premiums by 50% this year."

CORRECT: "As a policyholder, you can reduce your premiums by 50% this year."


"Try To" versus "Try And"

The correct usage is "I will try to fix it" rather than "I will try and fix it."

While the latter usage now has its foot in the door in more relaxed writing, when you're writing in a more formal situation, "try to" is the right version to use.


To "E" or Not to "E"

Judging or Judgeing? - Desirable or Desireable? - Argument or Arguement?

A word that ends with a silent "e" can present a challenge when you try to make a new word by adding a suffix after it (letters added to the end of a word).

For example, when you want a noun to become an adjective and vice versa, do you keep the "e" or drop the "e"? It's easy to make a spelling mistake with these words because they look funny either way.

Does desire become "desireable" or "desirable?" One that catches me up sometimes is "saleable" versus "salable." Neither looks logical... so I usually have to look it up in my Collegiate Dictionary.

But now I have the rules... and here they are:

(1) When adding a suffix that starts with a vowel - such as ism, ing, able or ible - you drop the "e" as a general rule.

So judge becomes judging (not judgeing); come turns into coming (not comeing), the aforementioned sale is now salable (and not saleable); true becomes truism; desire turns into desirable; mistake is now mistaking... and so on.

(2) There's always an exception to spelling rules in English:

When the word ending with a silent "e" has a soft "ce" or "ge" ending and you want to add the suffix "able" or "ous" - then you get to keep the "e."

Examples are:

advantage > advantageous

change > changeable

enforce > enforceable

courage > courageous

notice > noticeable.

(3) If, however, you are adding "ing" to the present participle of verbs like "singe," "tinge," or "dye," you keep the final (silent) "e." Hence we have "singeing," "tingeing," "dyeing," and "eyeing." (This dyeing has to do with changing the color of something; when spelled "dying," it's a loss of life.)

(4) Then again, if your suffix begins with a consonant, you keep the silent "e." It works this way for endings such as "ment," "ful," "ly," and "ty." So you have encouragement, extremely, lonely, ninety and useful.

(5) EXCEPT for... acknowledgment, argument, duly, judgment and truly, where you drop the "e."

One rule - with at least 4 exceptions. I wonder who can remember them all?