Archive for Personal Finance

Stanley Riiks Interview Part 3

Posted in Life..., Personal Finance, Uncategorized, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 23, 2020 by stanleyriiks

What other writers have influenced you?

The usual suspects: King, Barker, Koontz, Gaiman, J. K. Rowling, no surprises there. But, these guys, for me are surpasses by:

Garth Ennis who writes the best comics, brutal, violent, fun. Preacheris my favourite of his.

Gary McMahon whose Dead Bad Thingsis one of the darkest, nastiest, and filthiest novels I’ve ever read. It’s sublime. I read it years ago, and it’s still one of my favourites.

Andy Remic creates the best fantasy worlds, and inhabits them with amazing characters. And then he kills and tortures them. The blend of horror and fantasy is pure genius. He’s the only writer ever to make me physically wince while reading.

Neal Asher creates worlds I want to visit (Spatterjay), and A.I. I want to meet. SF at its best, complex plotting and great story-telling.

James A. Moore is another fantasy/horror writer who really punches you in the face with his novels. You don’t so much read them as experience them.

The only other author who deserves a special mention is Richard Kadrey and his Sandman Slim books. This series is a serious blast of adrenaline, full-octane, furiousness.

In terms of non-fiction it’s less about the writers and more about the topics, biographies on Ian Fleming, Warren Buffett, Hitler, Jenna Jameson. I read quite a range! I’m interested in how people work, and I like to know how companies and businesses work, like Apple, Amazon, WordPress.

 

What are your other influences?

I love films, I used to go to the cinema every week. I watch everything, romantic comedies, horror films and everything in between. Recently I’ve gotten bored with modern films that are just too long. I find myself bored halfway through a two-and-a-half-hour film, so we’ve started watching classics from the 90s and 2000s, like The Matrix,The Transporter, Leon.

I enjoy manga and anima, and US comic books. Particularly the darker ones like Batman, Preacher, The Sandmanand Vertigo comics.

 

Do you have any rituals or routines when you write?

I used to have a candle that I would burn, but my desk is now filled with mortgage statements and searches, so that would be a fire hazard. I just sit and type on my iMac. For non-fiction I usually need to concentrate more, but I will come back to something and add bits and pieces, expand areas in a very organic way, because I have the structure laid down. For fiction I flow more easily into the story, so it’s organic in a very different way.

 

If you could go back in time to when you started writing and give yourself one piece of advice what would it be?

Keep going. There have been times when I’ve given up, but it’s a very cathartic experience, and creating is a beautiful thing. More people should do it, not necessarily for publishing, but just for the joy of creating something from nothing but their imagination.

Also, I believe that nearly everybody has an area of expertise, and they can share that knowledge.

 

What book are you reading now?

The Soldier by Neal Asher. I’ve read a few of his, the covers are amazing. They say you can’t judge a book by its cover, but that’s how I pick them usually, and Asher had never let me down.

 

What is your proudest moment as a writer?

Seeing the cover of Think Rich, Get Rich.

 

Are you disappointed with any of your work when you look back on it?

When I edit I’m disappointed by every other word. Editing is actually something I feel quite good at, but it makes me cringe when reading my work back. Like when you record your voice and then listen to it. It doesn’t sound like that in your head. Words can’t capture the perfect of your imagination.

 

What’s next?

I’m editing the first two books in a series of erotic novels for a friend (just a slight change of direction there!). At the moment I’m happy to consume words rather than writing them for a little while longer.

 

 

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B089SB6KRM

 

Stanley Riiks Interview Part 2

Posted in Life..., Personal Finance, Reviews, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 20, 2020 by stanleyriiks

What does rich mean to you?

I think being rich is being financially independent. Not many people are. Financial independence means not being dependent on anyone, not a company for your wages, not your boss for a job. Having your own income outside of work, having a passive income, having time and money, and not having to choose between one or the other. Be able to live the life you want, to me that’s rich.

 

Is this a get rich quick scheme?

It’s not a get rich quick scheme. Nor it is a network marketing scheme, and it’s not an advert for a game or a course. A lot of the financial books I’ve read are just sales tools. I’m not upselling anything, I’ve just sharing hard-won knowledge.

 

Why do you feel now is the right time to launch a book like Think Rich, Get Rich: 5 Steps to Financial Independence?

The likelihood is we are going into one of the worse recessions on record. Now is the best time for people to be gaining knowledge about finance. This isn’t a book for rich people, they already know the secrets to wealth, this is a book for anyone who wants to know some of those secrets and set themselves up to be wealthy.

 

You’ve been writing for a while now. What inspired you to start writing?

I loved reading when I was young. And then I just kind of lost interest for a few years, but as a teenager I rediscovered books when I bought one of the Conan novels on my way home from school. I took it home, read the first chapter, then went straight out and bought a couple more books. It was my first fantasy novel and I was hooked. After that I borrowed my dad’s Stephen King novels and read those, and then SF, and everything else. I joined multiple book clubs, I visited the school and local libraries, and loved being in worlds not my own.

I started writing in my mid-teens, and enjoyed the feeling of being god, being in total and utter control of my characters’ lives and the worlds they lived in.

 

Why the switch to non-fiction after many years of writing fiction?

I started writing fiction, but I also had a diary, so my connection with non-fiction is long. I’ve written book reviews for as long as I can remember, and I don’t restrict myself to any one genre. I just write. Sometimes that’s stories, sometimes those stories are real and sometimes they aren’t. I don’t pick categories to write in, it just depends what I’m interested in at the time.

Stanley Riiks Interview Part 1

Posted in Life..., Personal Finance, Uncategorized, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 16, 2020 by stanleyriiks

Stanley Riiks Interview Part 1

Your latest book is Think Rich, Get Rich: 5 Steps to Financial Independence, is out now. Tell us about the book.

Think Rich, Get Richis a simple, step by step guide to money: saving it, investing it, and building your wealth so that you can live your best life. It’s concise and easy to follow. There are only 5 steps, which are broken down into easy bite-sized chunks. This is basically a financial bible.

 

You usually write horror, fantasy and SF. Why write a book about finance?

I’ve always been interested in finance, since about the age of 8 when I had to sell my Star Wars figures to buy Transformers (big mistake!). That’s when I realised I needed to save money, so I could buy the toys I wanted to. I started selling toys at school. I got my first job, a paper round, at 13. I bought my first shares when I was 15, too young to own them so they were in my mum’s name. I got a job as a cleaner at age 25, started my first business as 17. I feel like I’ve been preparing to write this book most of my life. During the last recession, after the housing market crashed in 2008, I wrote a series of blogs about finance. Now I know a lot more, so I decided to write a book.

 

What’s the one financial regret you have?

I’m only allowed one? Not buying enough shares during the 2008 recession. I did buy some Disney, but I wish I’ve bought Amazon, Nike, and Apple too. I also probably should have bought my first property sooner. Regrets aren’t helpful though, learn from your mistakes and move forward. I did get Apple shares a few years later, and I bought Nike shares during lockdown this year. If I had more money I’d buy Amazon too, but I’ve bought four property in the last year instead.

 

Biggest financial success?

My flat in Charlton, south east London. I bought it in 2013 and rented it for two years. It’s now worth nearly double what I paid for it. I think that’s pretty good!

 

Biggest financial mistakes?

Actually, it was one I narrowly escaped. We had been searching for properties for a few months and we found this perfect 3-bedroom house in Canterbury, ideal for a student let. We put in an offer and it was accepted, everything was going through fine, and then we get the survey back. The house had previously been bought at auctioned and had basically been bodged together to look good, but the ceiling was barely held up (the wrong nails had been used), the windows were dodgy and the roof was in serious danger of collapsing. There was nearly £30,000 of work that needed doing before it was even safe. We tried to negotiate the price down sufficiently to cover the costs, but the seller wouldn’t budge so we pulled out. That’s why I’ll never buy a house without a survey.

 

5 Steps doesn’t sound like much. Is wealth really achievable in just 5 steps?

The 5 steps in the book are not particularly difficult, but it does take discipline, it does take sacrifice. And it’s not going to happen overnight. If it was that easy, everyone would do it. Having said that, this is not rocket science, you don’t need to be super intelligent, you don’t need anything other than determination. And is it achievable? Yes, it most definitely is. I’ll be retiring next year at the age of 45, so it is perfectly achievable.

Think Rich, Get Rich: 5 Steps to Financial Independence

Posted in Life..., Personal Finance, Uncategorized, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 12, 2020 by stanleyriiks

Do you want to be rich? Then you need to start thinking about money in a different way…

5 steps to changing your life… 5 steps to financial independence… 5 steps to becoming rich…

This is a simple and easy to follow guide to becoming financially independent. What does that mean? That means not working for your money, but your money working for you. That means not being a wage-slave. Independence means freedom. In 5 steps you too can be financially independent.

5 steps. That’s all.

You need to be disciplined, you need to set yourself some targets and you need to ensure you meet your goals. You need to think rich. Everything in this book is achievable.

How do I know it works? How do I know you can do it? Because I’ve done it, and I’m doing it right now. In the last three years I’ve bought six investment properties, double the size of my share portfolio and have more in the bank than ever before.
This is not a get rich quick scheme. This is a financial self-help book.

Financial freedom is 5 steps away. Are you prepared to invest the time and money to get what you want, or are you happy being a wage-slave until you die? 5 steps is all it takes for you to get financial freedom. Are you ready to take the first step?

Available on Amazon uk

And Amazon.com

Soon coming to other good book sellers.

I’ve been away for a while

Posted in Life..., Morpheus Tales Magazine, Personal Finance, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 8, 2020 by stanleyriiks

It’s been almost a year since my last blog post. (I feel like I’m writing a confession!).

Life has unfortunately gotten in the way of writing. I didn’t write anything at all during the whole of 2019. I posted some reviews, but that’s it.

I also stopped working on the small press that I helped found, Morpheus Tales, to concentrate on my writing, would you believe!

Morpheus Tales is unfortunately on pause at the moment.

But now, during lockdown, I’ve started to write again (it only takes a pandemic!). Not the horror, fantasy or SF I usually write to escape the horrors of the real world, but a book about life. And how to win at it.

It’s called (third title change):

Think Rich, Get Rich: 5 Steps To Financial Independence

Or How The Rich Get Richer And The Poor Get Poorer

And is now available on Amazon UK and Amazon.com

DEVIL RED By Joe R. Lansdale – Reviewed

Posted in Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 1, 2015 by stanleyriiks

Although the Hap and Leonard series contains pretty much stand-alone novels, I came to this one having missed at least one book. The book I missed was Vanilla Ride, and unfortunately that book is quite heavily referenced in this one. It gives the backstory of Hap and Leonard’s meeting with the assassin Vanilla, who appears in this book. That was a little annoying, but reading a series out of sequence that kind of thing is bound to happen.

So, if you’re coming to this book never having read a Hap and Leonard story stop right now. Go back to the bookshop, or amazon, or wherever you got the book and buy The Bottoms, that’s Hap and Leonards first adventure and it’s one of Lansdale’s best novels. Which, for a writer of Lansdale’s immense talent, says a lot.

Hap and Leonard, a couple of middle-aged men who work for a local private detective, find themselves looking into a murder from some years ago. As they question and follow the clues more murders start to appear, and a mysterious red devil symbol is drawn at the crime scenes.

But as they get closer to this serial killer their own lives become endangered…

Landsale writes with a unique style, and the short, sharp dialogue moves the story along as a nice fast pace. The atmosphere and characters are rich and powerful, his action set-pieces roll along swiftly, and you don’t even have time to pause for breathe.

This is East Texas crime action as its very best. Lansdale is on form, and the Hap and Leonard novels never fail to entertain or impress.

Morpheus Tales Supplement July – Coming Soon!

Posted in Morpheus Tales Magazine, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 21, 2013 by stanleyriiks

Want to know what’s coming up in the July issue of the Morpheus Tales Supplement? There might be a little bit more coming, and this is not the final order, but this will give you a good idea of what’s coming!

Author and artist interviews, regular columns and loads of reviews! And it’s all free!

Coming in July!

THE DEPARTURE By Neal Asher

ZERO POINT By Neal Asher

GREAT NORTH ROAD By Peter F. Hamilton

CREAKERS By Paul Kane

THE FICTIONAL MAN By Al Ewing

Interview with David Lear of Firestone Books

MISSPENT YOUTH By Peter F. Hamilton

RAILSEA By China Mieville

VURT and POLLEN By Jeff Noon

BETWEEN TWO THORNS By Emma Newman

BEAUTIFUL CREATURES

REVIVER By Seth Patrick

THE SERENE INVASION By Eric Brown

THE BLOODLINE FEUD By Charles Stross

Juliet E. McKenna Interview

Duane Myers Interview

GENERATION LOSS By Elizabeth Hand

Ramblings of a Tattooed Head By Simon Marshall-Jones

GRIMM AND GRIMMER: VOLUME TWO Edited By Theresa Derwin

STARING INTO THE ABYSS By Richard Thomas

MONSTERS ANONYMOUS By Theresa Derwin

UNCLEAN SPIRITS By Chuck Wendig

Jack Skillingstead Interview

AGE OF SATAN by James Lovegrove

TELLING TALES OF HORROR

11/22/63 By Stephen King

BLACK RAIN By Joshua Caine

RISE OF THE ZOMBIES

THE BARRENS

REC 3: GENESIS

THE BAY

Karen DiStasio Interview

Morpheus Tales 18 Supplement OUT NOW! FREE MAGAZINE!

Posted in Morpheus Tales Magazine, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 9, 2012 by stanleyriiks

80 pages of hard work! Blood, sweat and tears! I can’t even tell you how hard I worked on this issue! Ok, yes, I can. It was immense, it almost killed me, but now it’s released! Onto you, the unsuspecting public! Do you know what you’re in for? Horror, SF and Fantasy; reviews, interviews, columns, and articles! Film, book and comic reviews! There’s so much in here, but we even added a massive exclusive preview of the stunning The Function Room: The Kollection by Matt Leyshon, which include the whole of the short story that set it all off, the original “The Function Room”.

How much are we charging for a marvelous 80 pages of entertainment?

Nothing, zilch, nada! It’s free. FREE I tell you. FREEEEEEEEEE!!!

http://issuu.com/morpheustales/docs/18reviews
Or download it in pdf format from the Morpheus Tales website: www.morpheustales.com/reviews.htm

MILLION DOLLAR PORTFOLIO By David and Tom Gardner – Reviewed

Posted in Life..., Personal Finance, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 28, 2012 by stanleyriiks

I’ve long been a fan of the Fool.com website and it’s UK equivalent. The fools practice no-sense, common-sense driven, long-term investing. This book is more of the same. Although you could find very similar articles to each chapter on the website, and I have read very similar to most of them, the book sums things up nicely. The style is the same, so if you enjoy the website you’ll enjoy the sensible with a touch of humour narrative.

The book will not make you rich. The sub-title is a much better description of what you get in this book: How to build and grow a panic-proof investment portfolio.

As I said before, fans of the website are not likely to find much new here, the book takes you through the steps of creating a diversified portfolio, helps you to maximise your investment returns and if you follow the instructions and use their methods it would be possible to create a million dollar portfolio if you started off with enough money and invested for long enough. In one scenario the brothers provide it take about 30 years.

Not the most exciting book on investing, this is a good guide for beginners but will hold little interest for experienced investors or those regularly uses of the Motley Fool.

ONE CLICK: Jeff Bezos and the rise of amazon.com By Richard L. Brandt – Reviewed

Posted in Reviews, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 30, 2012 by stanleyriiks

I buy 99.9% of my books through amazon, and have done for many years. Most of my friends and family use amazon for most of their book purchases. It’s amazing to think that such a huge and pervasive company is less than twenty years old.

This short book charts the history of amazon and its founded Jeff Bezos, from his work for a hedge-fund in New York to his starting the company with two programmers in a house in Seattle, and his determination and optimism that his company would be the biggest in the world by doing one simple thing: giving the customers a good service.

At two hundred pages the book doesn’t have room to go into a mass of detail, it charts the company’s rapid rise amid the dot-com bubble, its brief profit to appease investors and its massive investments in future growth and expansion which see profits shrink every year, despite vast sales. Investors in amazon have had a rough time, despite it being the biggest online retailer in the world.

Brandt doesn’t offer much insight, and a Bloomberg Game Changers Special gives you almost as much information, but the book is interesting. Brandt’s crisp journalistic style makes for easy reading, but as the Kindle and ebooks begin to revolutionise the publishing industry, amazon’s major competitor’s in books fall by the wayside, and as the company continues to plough new fields, you can’t help but think the story is far from over.

An interesting book, but without the personal insight into Bezos or the financial and business management insight into the company.