About KnowWare Publishing
- inexpensive, small and simple computer booklets
My name is Michael Maardt, born 1952 in Denmark. I live in Denmark. I studied sociology and psychology 10 years at universities in Denmark and Germany - I speak german and my main business Sept. 2002 is selling computer booklets in german in the german speaking part of Europe - www.knowware.de
1993 I wanted to show, that it was possible to make and sell litterature much cheaper than it was done at that time in Denmark. I started my own publishing house and wrote the first booklet myself.
It all started in 1992. I realized that the people, I worked with, did not really appreciate my work and I was not happy with this job. I decided, that I had to start my own company in order to be truly satisfied with my work. I did not have a clue what I wanted to do, I just knew one thing: it should satisfy my deeper Self more than an 8 to 5 job could do. Well, it's a long story ...
At that time of DOS 6 and 286-based computers I helped some friends by setting up their PC. All of my friends seemed to have the same problems, so I wrote some information up for them.
The "softbook" was invented
Later I thought "There must be more people, who need this information". I had a lot of help from my psychic friend, who could 'see' some options in the future. She gave me a lot of selfconfidence - she is now my best friend! - so I risked all the money I could collect and started my own publishing company.P>I worked day and night for 6 months, booting my PC maybe 2000 times. I got an idea: I wanted to write myself 5 years younger the book, that I wanted and needed 5 years ago! That was the secret of the text! I had learned meditation, listening and other mental and spiritual techniques - and I used them!
I published a small PC booklet (Get the most out of your PC) to help other computer users. I "invented" this softbook-format (19 x 26 cm or 7,5" x 10"). At that time computer books were heavy, thick, expensive, impersonal and hard to understand. A softbook of 64 pages weighs 130 grams. The good thing is, that it has no back (like a newspaper) and therefore you can bend it and have it lying next to your computer.
"Just what I need!"
Though this first edition was only 48 pages long, it contained everything a user needed to get a PC working as effectively as possible. The price was very low (US $ 5,-) compared to other computer books at that time. I was the only person, who believed that this economic risk would work - but as you can see, it did.
Why it became such a success in Denmark
The booklet was a success from the very beginning. I wrote it like a letter to a good friend. The text contained only the necessary information and no technical jargon. Later other authors came to me and said: I have an idea for another booklet, and then things started to roll. The small booklets sold by the thousands. The traditional computer book publishers did not know, what to do, so they made smaller books, trying to compete, but they soon gave up. People wanted the softbooks. As I said, other authors contacted me in 1994 and 1995 and other booklets on DOS, Windows 3.11, Word, Excel, the Internet etc. were published. KnowWare softbooks are light, inexpensive, personal and easy to understand.
How the press reacted
All major Danish newspapers wrote about the booklets, I was on the TV News and the booklets sold in large numbers. The first booklet was actually the best selling Danish "book" for several months, but the newspapers were afraid to write about it, because it was embarrassing for the whole book business. The message was clear: "a small revolution has happened in the computer book market in Denmark. Now people understand computer literature."