Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Joel Friedlander's A Self-Publisher's Companion - A Review

I recently obtained a Kindle copy of Joel Friedlander's new book A Self-Publisher's Companion. It is not your typical how-to self-publishing book. It offers a very different view of the industry and encourages authors who self-publish to think about what I will call philosophical issues. Mr. Friedlander encourages authors to define what success is for their book, why does the author want to self-publish or what is motivating the author? These are all valuable questions few authors think about.

The content of the book is based on 450 blog posts written over an extended period of time. Going through the blog archives, Joel found many articles of value about the nuts and bolts of self-publishing, how-to articles if you like. Instead of writing a how-to book, Joel sifted through his material and created as he calls it, a "why-to" book. Also covered in the book are topics such as book design, social media for authors, Ebooks, marketing and branding.

The book is well organized and easy to use. This is a valuable reference manual I will use over and over, particularly the section on design. I also found Joel's questions about why an author publishes are thought provoking and important. The answers to these questions will differ for each author but provide insights on ways to market and promote your book and ideas for design.

Joel's website and blog, The Book Designer, are great sources of information. You can access the site via the link on the right side of this blog in the listing for self-publishing blogs of interest.