Ascot Media Group Blog
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Counting Down Bob Dylan: His 100 Finest Songs

Latest Testimonial For Ascot Media Group

“I wrote a book called Counting Down Bob Dylan: His 100 Finest Songs. I was very proud of it and thought, with a successful blog, a platform as the writer for a national magazine, and some persistence, I’d be able to market it well on my own. Yet even though the people who got their hands on the book really enjoyed it, I just couldn’t seem to get any traction on a national or local level in terms of directing people toward the book.
 
In preparation for release of the second book in the series, Counting Down Bruce Springsteen: His 100 Finest Songs, I contacted Ascot Media Group. First of all, having checked out a few other book publicists, they were by far the most affordable. But they also delivered incredible results. Within weeks I did seven interviews, fielded inquiries for about 40 review copies from all over the country, and am scheduled, once the book comes out, to do more interviews, including several opportunities with Sirius/XM and possible coverage in The New York Times.
 
That’s all thanks to Ascot Media Group, who put together an outstanding press release, got that press release in just the right hands, and guided me every step of the way through the process. I even used the press release they sent me, targeted some local media myself, and got several more bites that way.
 
I cannot recommend Trish Stevens and her outstanding staff enough. I even received a free e-mail blast for referring another author to Ascot. And, without hesitation, I will definitely be employing them for future releases. If you need top-notch publicity for your project and don’t want to clobber your bank account to do it, there is really only once choice: Ascot.”
 
Jim Beviglia
Blog: countdownkid.wordpress.com
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Lowcountry Punch: Just The Ticket For Armchair Travelers Hankering For The Sultry South

If you’re sick of winter weather, take a trip to Charleston, SC, rated #1 city in the US for three years running by the Condé Nast Traveler Reader’s Choice Awards. You won’t even need to leave home. Boo Walker’s Lowcountry Punch (Sandy Run Press) evokes Charleston’s gritty side and its charm so vividly the city itself is essential to the cast of characters.

In Lowcountry Punch, DEA Agent T.A. Reddick leaves Miami for Charleston, SC after one of the worst nights of his life. He’s hoping a return to his roots will heal a wounded heart and the guilt of killing a friend. The sleepy and sultry city of Charleston is filled with echoes of the Old South: genteel playboys, society debutantes, and quiet cobblestone streets. 

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Reflections on Fundamental Matters: Challenging Society to T H I N K

Stopping to smell the roses has taken a back seat for typical on-the-go students, moms, executives, entrepreneurs and the like.  In short, societal norms dictate that our days consist of multitasking gymnastics – hardly the setting to foster reflection of any kind.  John H.T. Francis, author of Reflections on Fundamental Matters: Not for the Satisfied Mind challenges his readers to do more than simply taking a break from their fast-paced lives.  He wants them to think … truly think about what matters and he provides a stimulating starting point for these discussions in his book.

“Throughout my life, I’ve had a keen interest in asking important questions and looking for answers,” explains John. “While I’ve always had a great desire for knowledge, I could hardly ignore the disparity in the evolution of knowledge versus the way our society stands complacent. This book sets to bridge this gap and serves as an introduction to discovering new and perhaps different perspectives.” 

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How To End Negative Self-Talk And Take Life To A Whole New Level

New York/Pennsylvania, – Meet the dynamic duo! Politics might make for strange bedfellows, but the literary world is also capable of pairing some unusual bunkmates to produce powerful results. Noted author, and rabbinical leader Dr. Abraham Twerski, an Orthodox Jew; and, Tom Gagliano, whose roots are Italian Catholic and who is a high profile leader and successful entrepreneur in the field of addiction and self-help therapy, have joined forces to create this book, “The Problem was Me”(Gentle Path Press –July 2011). Tom Gagliano and Abraham Twerksi inspire readers to silence their inner voice of self-doubt and fear and begin living proactive, satisfying lives.

Tom Gagliano has developed unique methods and procedures that have been embraced by doctors, institutions and patients to help individuals deal with their childhood wounds. Besides his valuable psychological insight from his life experiences, Tom holds a Master’s degree in social work from Rutgers University.

Besides helping those with destructive behaviors, this book will also bring an understanding to many of us with loved ones who act in ways where they sabotage their own happiness when it comes their way. Also this book will provide some with a blueprint, a blueprint to give our children the healthy messages that may have been denied to many of us. 

To learn more about Tom Gagliano’s book, visit:  http://thomasgagliano.com or to find out more about the book and/or to book an interview with the author or discuss a review, please contact me at: kimmerie@mac.com

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TIP SHEET:

Publishers Weekly Review: “Gagliano …presents a method of stopping the negative thoughts and self-destructive behaviors that might appeal to sufferers of substance abuse and poor impulse control…Gagliano calls his negative voice ‘the warden’ and shares how it impacted his adult life. He presents the idea, backed by a quote from Twerski, that these voices stem from negative messages received during childhood…and illustrates his theories with traumatic childhood anecdotes, some from people identified as his clients. The section on how to conduct a written inventory gives readers a tangible tool to move toward recovery. The book provides a hopeful message on how parents can help their children avoid these pitfalls and how readers can include forgiveness and a spiritual power in their lives.”

Counselor Magazine: “…This book is certainly very suitable for those who are battling addictions since, as the author points out, ‘some addicts who have been sober for a long time may continue to lead tormented, angry lives.’ …However, it should not be written off as a book simply for those who are suffering addiction as it has a much broader application …and could be helpful to anyone who wants to break the cycle of self-defeating thoughts and self-destructive behaviors.”

 

 

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A Creation That Could Be Our Salvation

St. Charles, MO,  – Over the last two decades a new artificial intelligence paradigm has enabled vast brain-like neural assemblies to build themselves. In turn, these synthetic minds have generated both ideas and strategies that have exceeded both their direct experience and the talents of those who have enlisted their help. Detailed analysis of how these synthetic brains originate such brilliant concepts and strategies reveals what may be the grandest notion of all: how ideas themselves are formed within the biological neural networks of the brain. Widespread use of this ultimate idea could have an astounding effect upon the world.

While hordes of futurists are predicting such a form of contemplative artificial intelligence, one man already has it. It is The Creativity Machine® Paradigm by Stephen L. Thaler, Ph.D., and it brings new hope through the most advanced form of artificial intelligence in the world. 

The benefits are staggering. Economically alone, there are myriad new industries this technology can either originate or accelerate, creating endless new projects for “techies,” while indirectly spawning non-technical careers in support of each commercial effort. At the macro-economic level, machine intelligence based upon this paradigm could generate a model of national or even global financial contentedness and subsequently optimize the planet’s overall fiscal and sociological health. 

This momentous accomplishment has such an immense impact on all aspects of our lives that it deserves headline status; making it difficult to understand why there are forces at work in government, academia and industry, attempting to hijack this technology – slowing its deployment in a world starving for its capabilities. There are always those willing to take credit for what someone else has already succeeded in doing, namely the creation of free-thinking, contemplative, creative, and even conscious artificial intelligence.

In terms of answering the really big questions that have perplexed humanity for millennia, the Creativity Machine Paradigm excels. Simulate its death and it spells out our inevitable fate in no uncertain terms. Drive it to protect itself and it develops all the attributes we commonly attach to human consciousness. Carefully study how this neural architecture attains such self-awareness and we suddenly understand how a cosmic consciousness can arise from inanimate matter, space, and energy. Most importantly, in the wake of these amazing revelations we see an enormous opportunity for the preservation of human consciousness beyond death through our union with this highly advanced form of sentient machine intelligence.

Dr. Thaler is President and CEO of Imagination Engines, Inc., a company founded upon key scientific and engineering breakthroughs in the area of artificial neural networks, and In Its Image, a non-profit corporation that is dedicated to extending lives and philosophical exploration of The Creativity Machine® Paradigm. Dr. Thaler graduated Westminster College and obtained a Ph.D. in Physics at the University of Missouri-Columbia.

Thaler is in the process of writing a book on The Creativity Machine® Paradigm, at the heart of which will be his invited talk at the World Future Society meeting in Boston, along with his article “Thalamocortical Algorithms in Space! The Building of Conscious Machines and the Lessons Thereof.” He is also inviting technically-oriented business thinkers to join him in the bootstrapping of new prosperity-generating industries based upon this bleeding-edge AI paradigm. To this end he is currently completing work on an informative and thought provoking web site at http://imagination-engines.com and its philosophically-driven sister site http://initsimage.org. He will also be holding a series of open houses at his St. Charles Missouri Headquarters. Watch the imagination-engines.com web site for details.

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TIP SHEET:

Dennis Bushnell, Chief Scientist & Visionary, NASA Langley: “AI’s best bet” at creating human to trans-human level machine intelligence.”

Mark Reiners: “Very simply, having now been familiar with Steve’s CM/STANNO AI technology for about seven years, I would judge it to be arguably the most important and powerful AI technology extant. We at MetaTrieval Software already have plans for leveraging some of its amazingly wide range of capabilities for important future enhancements of our own core product.”

Karl Simpson: “Imagination-Engines Inc., based in St. Louis, USA, is the future of artificial intelligence and neural networks. Stephen Thaler’s genius and insight may define the future of computation and networking. Sentient computers could be a result of this initiative.”

General media resources are available at http://imagination-engines.com/media/iei_media.htm

For answers to the really big questions, see:  http://imagination-engines.com/InItsImage/TCAIS%20Flash/Thalamocortical%20Algorithms%20in%20Space!.html

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Entrepreneur Offers Winning Strategies For Business, Sports And The Business Of Sports

Boca Raton, FL, – Steve Tebon wants to know if you’ve “got your game on.” It’s easy — just read the book. Game On: The Power of the Sports Marketing Deal (Tebon Publishing), is for entrepreneurs, business executives, athletes and those who practice or study the business of sports.

As Tebon points out, the first step for anyone is to find your target market and be creative. For example, ask somebody about sports marketing and they’ll tell you it’s all about the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, and major college sports. But not Tebon. He quickly realized there was a niche out there that offered big opportunities for a young entrepreneur.

“Recreational sports, lifestyle sports. The grassroots, participant market is the fastest growing and potentially biggest market out there,” he says. At some point, virtually everybody will shoot hoops, spike a volleyball, hop on a bike or lace up a pair of running shoes. Tebon shows his clients how to pursue this virtually untapped revenue stream, and now he’s sharing it with his readers.

You may not have given it much thought, but just how did that race to benefit a local charity happen? Who’s behind last month’s hugely popular beach volleyball tournament? There’s a good chance it’s Exclusive Sports Marketing or a company like it. It takes a specific skill set to create, promote and run successful events, and Tebon knows those skills inside and out.

A diehard recreational athlete, and 7-time Ironman finisher, Tebon has studied the industry intensely.  Like many other experts, he’s bullish on the growth of grassroots sports. “The U.S. is experiencing a serious health crisis, and events like running, biking, and competing in triathlons are playing a huge role in helping people get back into shape, and focusing on a healthy lifestyle for them and their families.”

The keys to making sporting events and business in general profitable are easily understood through the informal and helpful pages of Game On. One of these is strategic alliances. Before Tebon sold his multi-million dollar business, Exclusive Sports Marketing developed long standing sponsor partnerships with industry giants such as Anheuser-Busch, Nike, Coca-Cola, Pepsico, Gatorade, Nestle’s Brands, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and Club Med.

Tebon’s strategies for closing the deal are clearly laid out in Game On: The Power of the Sports Marketing Deal. Creating and maintaining relationships is one important aspect. Providing “5-Star” Customer Service is another. Using these techniques and more, Tebon connected influential businesses with the audiences they targeted at more than thirty events every year, such as The Publix Family Fitness Weekend/Sprint Triathlon Series, The Bud Light Beach Volleyball Series, The Toyota Tundra Adventure Racing Series, and the Ft. Lauderdale A1A Marathon and ½ Marathon, just to name a few.

After selling Exclusive Sports Marketing in 2006, Tebon has been working as a consultant to the growing business of recreational sports marketing. His consulting services also include event/ athlete management, development of strategic programming and the creation of print and electronic marketing strategies. He will also be teaching a Sports Management course using Game On as the text, at Lynn University, (Boca Raton, FL), beginning with the Spring 2012 semester.

Please check out Steve Tebon’s website at: www.gameonsportsmarketing.com

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TIP SHEET:

Kevin Sreenan, General Manager, Mercedes-Benz U.S.A: “With Steve, you knew his best interest was your best interest. In the face of adversity or a challenge, he proved himself to be a winner, and in this business, you always want to go with a winner.”

Mark Wilson, Senior Sports Marketing Manager, Anheuser-Busch: “Steve took the time to find out what we wanted, and then wasn’t afraid to get his hands dirty and go above and beyond the branding partnership. That earned our trust and longstanding sponsorships.”

Chon Searfoss, Senior VP Nestles Waters: “A huge reason you want to associate with Steve is that he genuinely wants you to succeed and believes that if his friends and associates succeed, he will too.”

Steve Scott, Nike Senior Sales Executive: “What separated Steve from his peers was his ability to establish relationships. He developed them to the point where each party obtained successes because of the other. He redefined the art of networking.”

Steve Meckfessel, Chief Operating Officer, Ironman: “Steve’s vision helped ESM [Exclusive Sports Marketing] write the race director’s handbook with respect to packaging the sport of triathlons. During the 1990’s, ESM was the gold standard among Florida promoters.”

Richard Gonzmart, President/CEO, The Columbia Restaurant Group: “People like to be around winners, and that’s what Steve and ESM are! It was a true honor for my family’s business to be associated with the Publix Family Fitness Weekend for as long as we were.”

 

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How One Man’s Lifelong Dream And Perseverance Got Him On Letterman

New York, NY, – “Knowing what you’re dying to do tells you what you are living for.” – Steve Mazan

Background for dying to do Letterman: turning someday into today (HCI Books– $14.95). A very special book which grew out of his award-winning documentary film by the same name, here is everything you need to know about Steve, the book, and the film:

Steve Mazan was a funny kid with a big dream. From the time he was 12 years old, he wanted to become a comedian for one reason, and one reason only: to perform stand-up comedy on David Letterman’s show. Like all eager comics, he hustled for work in small clubs across the country, taking any gig he could earn. The pay was crummy, the progress miniscule, and some of the jobs ridiculous (like performing comedy at a minor league baseball game without a working microphone!) But Steve continued hoping that “someday” his dream might come true.

Then he received news that would change his life forever. Steve was diagnosed with incurable liver cancer, and learned he might only have five years to live. That was in 2005. Fighting through the fear and refusing to let depression swallow him whole, Steve chose to make the most out of his remaining time…he would dedicate what was left of his life to living his dream: performing on The Late Show for his idol, David Letterman.

This life-affirming, funny documentary chronicles Steve’s moving five year journey. Verite footage mixed with intimate diary cam and home movies shot by Steve gives dying to do Letterman a raw, incredibly real edge as it looks at cancer and comedy in a brand new light.

Beginning with Steve’s decision to “live his dream or die trying,” friends and family members pull together to launch a grass-roots campaign called “Dying to do Letterman.” They hope to grab Dave’s attention. Steve entertains audiences everywhere and enlists their help in reaching out to Letterman. Thousands of Steve’s comedy fans email The Late Show with the request, “book Mazan!” It looks like everything is going great…until Steve gets an email himself.

Letterman’s executive producer informs Steve that the show ‘gets these requests’ all the time, and while they’re sorry he’s sick, it would be ‘impossible’ to make this dream happen. He’s at a devastating crossroads. But, ever the fighter, he decides he’ll just have to ‘live longer’ and get on the show the old fashioned way: being funny in as many clubs as possible. Keeping audiences laughing in clubs everywhere, Steve works hard to become the best comedian he can, all the while using humor to help him deal with his disease. He even creates his own top ten list: The Top Ten Benefits of Catching Cancer.

Over the next four years, Steve battles his health, self-doubt, and bankruptcy as he chases his “impossible” dream.

Through it all, Steve’s new age wife, Denise, struggles to support the quest as best she can, all the while subjecting him to a slew of alternative healing treatments in the hopes he’ll live just a little longer. More than simply ensuring he survives to appear on Letterman, she aims to keep Steve healthy enough to father children—a life experience he’s just not ready to undertake.

Along the way, Steve obtains hysterically honest advice from comics who have appeared on Letterman like Kevin Nealon, Ray Romano, Brian Regan, and many others. In a surprising, action-packed sequence, Steve takes his new comedy material to Iraq where, while performing for the troops, the base is bombed and he has a close call with death. Steve exclaims, “Being so close to that explosion showed me…it’s not just cancer that can kill you!” Steve even manages to forge a shaky relationship with the comedy booker at Letterman’s show, but as the years roll by he begins to wonder if he’s wasted his precious time on a silly childhood fantasy.

Just when all seems lost, Steve gets a big call: The Late Show may be interested in booking him. But when a horrible misunderstanding strikes, has Steve blown his one and only shot at his dream? As the film comes to a close, Steve finds himself alone in a hotel room in New York City, waiting for a phone call from the show: will his dream finally come true?

Hilarious and heart-breaking, Steve risks everything to prove dreams matter.

dying to do Letterman is a roller-coaster ride of laugher, tears, and reversals of fortune that boldly says, “If you stop chasing your dreams, you’re already dead.” And, now, it’s a book!

Steve Mazan. Man? Myth? Legend? Some people say he’s none of these. Steve is, however, one of the hottest comedians and speakers in the country and a veteran of the US Navy. Critics have described his act as ‘brilliant,’ ‘goofy,’ and ‘exceptionally clever.’ That reputation has landed him on the most coveted stages and numerous television shows, including The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson. Steve’s journey to try and get on the Letterman show has been made into an award-winning documentary that’s been called ‘inspiring’ and ‘side-splittingly funny.’ A former writer for Ellen Degeneres, Steve has also appeared on Last Comic Standing, Byron Allen, and The Bob & Tom Show. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Denise, and his dogs, Wrigley and Kuma, and currently travels the country to film festivals where his documentary is racking up critic awards and audience acclaim. For more information on the movie Dying to Do Letterman, and about Steve and his latest book, visit www.stevemazan.com and www.dyingtodoletterman.com.

Available online or at bookstores or to order directly from the publisher, contact:
www.hcibooks.com or (800) 441-5569.
dying to do Letterman: turning someday into today
Steve Mazan
ISBN: 978-0-7573-1627-2
$14.95 – October/November 2011

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