Steve Mastroianni playing guitar

From the time he was young, Steve Mastroianni knew exactly what he wanted to be: a rock star. He had dreams of starting a band, writing songs, and touring the world. As passionate as he was about music, though, Steve’s entrepreneurial side meant he had no interest in being a “starving artist.” That’s why every decision he made was calculated to help him achieve his goals of fame and fortune.

Eventually, his hard work paid off. Steve signed a record deal with Gene Simmons and started touring with KISS. For almost 10 years, he lived his rock-star dream. And then, in 2013, his world was turned upside down.

“My dad was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer. At that moment, I knew I was going to have to go from rock star to caregiver.”

Becoming his dad’s primary caregiver meant Steve couldn’t tour the world with KISS anymore. But he wasn’t willing to let go of the music completely. Once again, his entrepreneurial spirit came to the forefront. This time, though, it had a different focus: coaching other people.

Along with music, Steve has always been passionate about helping people solve their problems and live their best lives. And before long, he noticed a big problem in his own beloved music community: there were thousands of people who wanted to become rock stars in their own right, but didn’t know how.

To help them, Steve started an online guitar coaching company called Rockstar Mind. He wasn’t touring with a world-famous band like KISS anymore, but being able to help other people realize their dreams was just as appealing.

Soon, he expanded the business to include coaching for people who were starting their own hobby-based businesses. He started sharing what worked for him, and reveled in his clients’ successes as much as he did his own.

Steve realized writing a book was the best way to gain credibility and authenticity.

Steve touring with KISS

After he started Rockstar Mind, Steve decided to write a book to help people master the guitar. He published Practice Less, Play More in 2019, and it was an instant hit. And yet, despite the book’s success, Steve found the whole writing and publishing process incredibly difficult and time consuming.

Despite the challenges of writing and publishing it, when Practice Less, Play More brought him his first six-figure year, he had an epiphany: a book was the perfect way to reach people who are eager for your message. It was obvious to him that writing a book was also the best way to develop brand and business credibility, lend authenticity to coaching programs, and justify charging higher rates.

After the success of Practice Less, Play More, Steve started thinking about writing another book. This one wouldn’t be about playing music, though. Instead, it would focus on the other aspect of his business: helping people with their hobby-based businesses. When the pandemic hit, Steve knew it was time to act.

“A lot of people were out of work and scrambling to find other sources of income. I wanted to help them by sharing what worked for me.”

Steve knew he couldn’t write another book without expert help.

As committed as he was to the idea of writing a second book, there was a major problem. After his experience with Practice Less, Play More, Steve knew he never wanted to take on something like that by himself again.

One of the biggest reasons? He absolutely did not have the time. Not only was he running a rapidly growing company, he and his wife had a toddler, and they were expecting twins.

On top of that, Steve just didn’t have the interest in taking on the project solo.

“I want to innovate and do new things. I want to create systems and frameworks. Dealing with the logistics of a book—the editing, the layout, the promotion—is not my thing.”

However, Steve also knew he wanted to maintain creative control. He was stuck between a rock and a hard place; he needed help with the book, but he didn’t want to relinquish his vision to a publisher that would change it.

He was stuck. If he didn’t figure out a different way, a better way, his book might never see the light of day. And if that happened, he’d never be able to reach all the people who had lost their livelihood in the face of COVID—people he desperately wanted to help.

Steve wondered if Scribe could give him the expert guidance he desperately needed.

As Steve hunted for a solution, he remembered something: when he wrote his first book, he had turned to The Scribe Method to help him. He wondered if the company that put that book out could help him again, albeit in a much more hands-on way.

When he went to Scribe’s website, he realized that many of the books they had published were ones he had read and loved. He knew if they could help his favorite authors put out such high-quality, impactful books, they could help him, too.

Steve had found his solution. Wanting to make sure he maintained control over how the book was written, he signed up for Scribe’s Guided Author package and got ready to work.

As the date of his Guided Author workshop drew nearer, though, fear started to overtake him. The Guided Author package placed him squarely in the driver’s seat when it came to writing the first draft of the book, but what would happen when an editor stepped in? Would they water his message down?

“The way I write isn’t conventional. It’s very conversational and easy to read. I had this fear that the editor would turn my book into a textbook.”

Steve was petrified that once he submitted his manuscript, he’d be locked out of the editing process. He had nightmares of getting a big, bulky book back, opening it, and not recognizing it at all.

Steve was amazed at the level of collaboration he had with his team.

Steve turned upside down

Steve soon realized that his fear was completely unfounded. After he finished his manuscript, he sent the book in for review—then was shocked and delighted with how collaborative the process was.

Yes, the editor did make some changes in the name of conventionality (for example, spelling numbers out versus writing them numerically), but she also explained how every change would make the book more readable. It all made sense, and Steve got to provide input on every decision.

By the time Steve was in editing, his twins had been born, too. Aware that he didn’t have a lot of extra time, his editor put together checklists for him so he could specifically see what changes needed to be made in each section.

“The fact that I could just go down the list and knock each item out—boom, boom, boom—was amazing. I had three kids under three at the time, so I needed that kind of specific guidance.”

Things went so well, in fact, that editing quickly became one of Steve’s favorite parts of the whole process. As wonderful as it was, though, there was one thing that was even better.

To honor his father’s memory, Steve wanted to release his book on the anniversary of his passing. When he told his team that, they listened, then worked with him to make sure that he hit his launch date goal. Experiencing such profound support and compassion from his entire Scribe team meant the world to him.

Steve’s book gave his coaching business the credibility he had been seeking.

When Hobby Boss came out, Steve couldn’t have been prouder or happier. The book was the culmination of all he had learned about how to grow and run a thriving, successful hobby-based business, and he was excited about how people would respond.

He was right to be excited. When the book launched, Steve immediately noticed how much it changed people’s perceptions of his business.

“Suddenly, people were taking my coaching programs and all my other offerings more seriously, and they were willing to pay a premium for them.”

For example, when the book came out, he pre-sold a program called From Plan to Profit. The program, which went for the premium price of $3,500, dovetailed with his book, because it focused on helping people get started with their hobby businesses. Before he knew it, it had brought in over $20,000. He also created and pre-sold a program called Guitar Coach Academy. That program quickly brought in more than $20,000, too.

The best part is that demand for those programs hasn’t waned. Because of the continuing interest in Hobby Boss, Steve knows he can successfully release those programs again and again.

That’s not all the book has done for him. In addition to making it easier than ever to sell programs (as From Plan to Profit and Guitar Coach Academy demonstrated), Hobby Boss also gave Steve the credibility he needed to justify an increase in his one-on-one coaching rates.

For Steve, it’s clear that all this success is a direct result of the book. By encapsulating all of his business strategies and philosophies into one book, he gained the leverage he needed to grow his business coaching exponentially.

Steve is empowering people to achieve the results they always dreamed of.

Steve with book and family

As happy as he was about how Hobby Boss impacted his business, for Steve, the ultimate goal was always to help people—and that’s exactly what he’s doing.

Every day, he hears from people around the world who want to thank him for changing their lives. Recently, he heard from a man who said he had tried to start a business so many times, but had failed over and over again. After following the advice in Hobby Boss, he was finally achieving the success he had always dreamed of.

Messages like that one mean the world to Steve.

“When someone comes to me and they’re overwhelmed and I can empower them to get results, I love that. I love seeing them light up and realize they have so much potential to do what they want to do.”

The messages he gets from people are proof that he’s making a difference. They’re proof that something that started as a thought in his head is having a real, tangible impact on people’s lives. It makes Steve want to keep going, to write more books, to help more people.

He may once have lived the glamorous life of a rock star, but in his eyes, the work he’s doing now—being able to touch people’s lives in such a positive way—is truly his greatest achievement.

Here are a few more people whose lives have been changed because of Hobby Boss.

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