A lovely new review for “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment”

How I survived my first year of full-time self-employment A new review has come in for my first business book, “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment“. I’m so glad that this reader has got the idea that the  light-hearted bits on tea and cardigans, etc., are supposed to make it more fun and approachable to read, and I love that they say that it’s inspired their own career – exactly what I wanted to do. Hooray!

I get fewer new reviews these days, but every one still counts, even on the books that already have quite a few reviews. So just a reminder that if you read and enjoy a book – especially if it’s by an indie author – it’s always useful to pop a review on Amazon or wherever else you bought it.

This reviewer said,

Insightful, informative and invaluable – a little gem! Liz gives the reader sound, invaluable advice that has served to inspire my own fledgling career. The book is also interspersed with light-hearted insights that makes the reading a pleasurable experience … ” (read the whole review here)

Read more about “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment” including how and where to buy.

Why did I write my books? Why did you write yours?

Liz Broomfield booksThe other day, I was chatting with someone who didn’t know I’d written several books. I found myself explaining why I wrote them … and now I’m wondering why people write their books. So I’m going to share first, then I hope other people will do, too, in the comments.

I wrote my first book, “How I Conquered High Cholesterol” for two reasons. The first was that I was diagnosed with high cholesterol, given a really quite unhelpful single A4 sheet by my doctor (which tried to cover the diets of all of the ethnic groups in the UK in one page) and threatened with medication. Once I’d worked everything out and got my cholesterol lower and staying lower, I wrote it all down and added some recipes. The second reason was that as an editor and proofreader, I was working with quite a few people who wanted to self-publish ebooks, and I wanted to see what that process was like from the inside (I used that same reasoning when I later put together print versions of my books).

When I went full-time self-employed, I blogged about the process for a year, and then I put those blog posts together into a book, “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment“. I did that one for two reasons, too. The first was, to be honest, that lots of people were turning blogs into books and I thought it would be easy (it’s not that easy to make it not seem like it’s just a load of blog posts shoved together into a book, by the way). I thought I could produce a side-stream of passive income which would generate itself as I worked on my full-time job, and the books have done that to a certain extent. I did also write it, again, because I couldn’t find many resources covering my specific situation, as a 40-something wanting to dip gently into self-employment rather than risking everything. I also wanted to make it approachable – a book I would want to read, and my readers have appreciated that (even the one who said there were too many cardigans in it …). The subtitle, “Going it Alone at 40” was the original title, another error!

I kept on blogging, and I realised I had more to say about running more of a mature business, once you’ve done all the start-up stuff. So I put together the ultimately not hugely successful “Running a Successful Business After the Start-up Phase: Who are you Calling Mature?” I added loads of stuff about social media, websites and how you know when your business is stable and levelling out, then how to build income, etc., and people who read it like it, but I’ve never really been able to explain it very well, I fear, and it lags in the sales department.

Then I put these two business books together into “Your Guide to Starting and Running your Business” which I offer at a discounted price compared to the two individual volumes, because I honestly feel that I want to provide this information in the most cost-effective way possible for the reader. I feel very strongly about books that promise much then try to sell you a course with the author: by putting together the omnibus, I tried to provide as much as I could for as little as possible.

My next-best selling title after the Cholesterol book, “Quick Guide to  your Career in Transcription” came about because I kept seeing lots and lots of searches coming through to my business blog around transcription. I’d blogged a bit on the topic and I wrote more for this guide – including adding a section on ergonomics when an early reader complained that topic wasn’t included! The books I found on the topic were quite pushy and get-rich-quick, so I thought there was room for a no-nonsense and friendly guide along the lines of my other business books. I included some basic information on setting up a business from those book, but tailored everything else towards transcription itself.

Showing that you can be too clever, I sprung at the idea of stuffing your title with keywords and put together “Quick Guide to Networking, Social Media and Social Capital“. Oh, they will all search for these terms and come to the book, thought I. Well, again, people who read it find the brief, no-nonsense guide to networking in person and through social media useful, but it’s not picked up the sales I hoped for.

Looking to the future, I really want to write a main and quick guide to your career in proofreading and editing. I’m including a self-mentoring guide in that – the reason for that being that a lot of people ask me for formal mentoring and that’s not something I have the resources to do. The self-mentoring guide will then be published separately in a more general version to help people with their businesses.

If I cast my mind back over all of these books, the main impetus has been to help people, and to write the book I wish I’d had when I was in that situation. What about you? Why did you write your book? I’d love to know (feel free to include a link to your book in your comment, but I’ll monitor the responses for spamminess so please share your story as well as your link).

Over to you …

Another lovely review for “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment”

How I survived my first year of full-time self-employment You know what? I really am going to have to take the bits about tea and cardigans out of the new versions of my books specifically for editors and transcribers … although then what would people have to write about in their reviews? This reviewer has also been in touch with me for further information – I, like all authors, I’d imagine, love it when that happens. It’s all been either nice comments or questions, so far, however!

Anyway, there were some lovely comments in this review, and I really appreciate all reviewers who take the time to publish their thoughts on my books!

A field of gold, full of treasures … I loved and appreciated the fact that she is so willing to share the wealth of information that has enabled her to be where she is now, this is truly worth emulating for all whether business owners or not … All in all a great, practical book and I would wholeheartedly recommend it. It is to be read over and over again. (You can read the full review here.)

If you’ve read this one, what do you think? Should I take the tea and tracksuit bottoms out of my new omnibuses or tell it how it is, fleece and all?

Read more about “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment” including how and where to buy.

All of my books for small business (and my book on beating high cholesterol) are now available in print editions

Liz Broomfield books

I’m really excited to announce that all of my books are now available in print editions, as well as the e-books which have always been available. This was in response to some market research that I did, and also people reaching out to me to ask whether and when the books would be available in print.

The new ones – the Quick Guides and How I Conquered High Cholesterol – are in a handy 5″ x 8″ format, so nice and easy to pop into your bag. They are priced as low as I can – I have never believed in charging a huge premium and making a large profit on either my print or e versions, so please be assured that they are priced to take into account the royalty that Amazon takes, the cost of production (in the case of the print books) and a small profit for me. I want to make sure they’re accessible.

The print books were produced through CreateSpace so available on a print-on-demand basis from Amazon. I know some people aren’t keen on Amazon – I’m committed to helping lobby the government on tax avoidance, but unfortunately Amazon is the main market for me. However, if you’re not keen on buying from there, you can buy my e-books from Smashwords and the very independent Selz, so hopefully that gives you enough options.

If you buy one of my print editions, please let me know and tell me what you think about it. If you take a photo of yourself or something representing your business with the book, I will post it on my photos and reviews page on this website, with a link to your business if you’d like.

Phew – it’s been hard work, but hopefully it will be worth it in terms of getting my books into the hands of people who they can help. That’s what it’s all about for me.

If you want to find out more about how any of these books can help you start and build your business, network and work with social media, take up a career in transcription or manage your cholesterol, do take a look at the individual pages for the books …

How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment | Running a Successful Business after the Start-up Phase | Quick Guide to Networking, Social Media and Social Capital | Quick Guide to your Career in Transcription | How I Conquered High Cholesterol

PS I made screen shots as I created my print versions and I’m planning to post instructions on here detailing exactly how I did that – would you find that useful? I’ve also blogged about whether this venture is proving successful.

“How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment” receives its 25th 4 or 5 star review!

How I survived my first year of full-time self-employment I was thrilled to notice I’ve had my 25th review (all 4 or 5 stars) on Amazon.co.uk (it’s got three more on Amazon.com) for “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment“. I’m really proud of this book, and I’m enjoying rejigging it for the new edition purely for proofreaders and editors – I’m glad I shared my own experiences to write the book I wished I’d been able to read when I was starting out – everything was so pushy and risk-it-all or else wishy-washy without good worked examples and detailed information.

A really useful perspective … It has given me plenty to think about, but also boosted my confidence that I, too, can build a successful business. Thanks Liz! (Read the full review on Amazon)

I’m always glad to know when I’ve boosted someone’s confidence – that’s what I set out to do and it’s gratifying to know that it’s worked!

Read more about “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment” including how and where to buy.

A lovely new long review for “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment”

How I survived my first year of full-time self-employmentAuthor and editor Steve Dunham has posted a lovely long and detailed review of “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment” over on his blog. We did a review swap – I reviewed his “Editor’s Companion” on my own book review blog but, just like doing competitions offering free books or giving physical copies to reviewers or any other of the myriad ways we try to get our books out there, you can never assume that a) you’re going to get a good review, b) you’re going to get more than a one-liner, or c) you’re going to get a review at all.

Steve really “got” what I was trying to do with the book …

Liz invites you to take a walk with her through the year, encounter the ups and downs with her, and learn the lessons as she learns them.

and has understood that I’m explaining my process as an example, not a prescription:

Liz describes her methods for scheduling work and keeping accounts, knowing that readers will need to devise their own ways of organizing pieces of a business, and simply offers her ways as an example. Her description of how she handles her bookkeeping will encourage you to do yours promptly and regularly, even if your system is different. If you’re self-employed, or thinking about it, just reading how she does things will probably give you ideas for your own business.

It’s not a puff piece – Steve makes the very valid point that I wrote this (partly unintentionally) for a UK audience, and I will address this issue in the version I’m rewriting specifically for editors and proofreaders, making sure I explain British terms and provide dollar conversions, so I’m glad he reminded me of this. It’s also true that different kinds of readers will like the different levels of detail on various topics in the book (I know some people who’ve loved the bits on tea; others have memorably criticised me for including too many cardigans!).

So it’s a very fair review, with a lot of detail and understanding – and that’s the best kind of review, in (of!) my books. Thank you to Steve, and I’m glad he found my book worthwhile.

Read more about “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment” including how and where to buy.

You’ve started your business … what (do you read) next?

Running a successful business after the start-up phaseI received a delightful email from a reader this morning – it really made my day. They told me how they’d been inspired by my first business book (How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment) and had set up their business, and were now looking forward to my upcoming book on self-mentoring for businesspeople. However, they seemed to have missed the fact that I have also written a book specifically for people who have already set up their business, but want to look at the next stages.

Running a Successful Business after the Start-up Phase covers just these issues. It drills down into using social media and blogging to support and grow your business, but also talks about getting the balance right, increasing your income by getting the right mix of clients, deciding who to work with (once you have the luxury of not having to scramble for Every. Single. Job.) and how to say no (again, once you have the luxury of doing so – although sometimes you just HAVE to say no).

I originally gave this book the title “Who are you Calling Mature?” but feedback suggested the title implied the book was about growing old disgracefully! So I swapped the main and sub-titles round, and re-issued it, but it’s never quite had the success of my other books.

I don’t know if this is because more people start businesses than continue them, or if it’s because people know there are start-up books out there but didn’t realise there are other books on growing and developing your business (I can see that there are fewer of the latter, but I was looking for that information, just like I was looking for information on starting up a business, which is why I blogged about a few of the topics, then wrote the book).

You can also pick up both books together in my Omnibus: Your Guide to Starting and Running your Business, because both of them are useful for new businesspeople, and I want to offer as good value as I can, so there’s a saving on the price of the two books separately.

And now I’m saying it loud and clear: here’s a resource for you if you’ve set up your business, got the basics going, but you want to refine your customer base, get more profitable, get your life back and learn when to say yes and when to say no!

If you have read this book, do let me know what you thought about it, how I could improve the description on Amazon and Smashwords and whether you’ve been inspired to write a review!

Find out more about Running a Successful Business after the Start-up Phase.

Great new book reviews – hooray!

My book sales have returned to normal after a dip in December – I can only put this down to people avoiding Amazon (there was a lot of talk about people boycotting the company for Christmas) and possibly some stuff around their new e-book arrangements. Then there was the fear over the VATMOSS issue – I’m happy to say that my prices have only ended up going up by about 15p for the higher-priced ones and I’ve left them there for the time being. I won’t see any of that extra money – it goes straight to the government in the form of VAT paid by Amazon (I hope!).

Anyway, I’ve been mightily cheered by two lovely reviews for my books …

How I survived my first year of full-time self-employmentThis review of How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment (was it really three years ago that I spent my January working hard once I’d got through my jury service?) was posted on 11 January …

Great break-down guide! … Liz’s tone is one you can relate to as it is approachable and warm. There are no gimmicks to this book; it delivers what it says … (see the whole review here)

It’s so lovely when someone really gets what you’re trying to do and picks up the aims of your book, so even though this review is short, it was very valuable and cheering to read. That’s my 24th four- or five-star review on Amazon UK for this book!

Find out more about this book here.

quick guide to your career in transcriptionAnd this longer review appeared over the weekend for Quick Guide to your Career in Transcription. I’m so pleased when I hear that I inspire people – it’s what I write my website and these books for. So, thank you, all of my lovely reviewers!

The most helpful book for anyone wanting to get into transcription I have just finished reading your book Liz and am completely inspired … Your tips were invaluable … Your encouragement is truly inspirational. (read the whole review here)

Find out more about this book here.

Anyone who writes books will tell you that reviews (good ones, or helpful ones, anyway) really make their day. Making that connection, knowing you’ve entertained, inspired or helped someone – priceless!

A new review for “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment”

How I survived my first year of full-time self-employmentI knew this lady was reading my book, “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment” because she posted a picture of it on her stand at a jewellery fair (see all of my readers’ pics here) but I was thrilled to see this Amazon five-star review of the paperback version:

A really easy to understand book which was enjoyable and informative

I’ve been following the authors blog for a while and when I found out that this book was now available in format other than for e-readers I just had to buy it. I started with my full time self-employment 2 months ago after working with my self employment in tandem with full time employment elsewhere and found there was a lot of information that resonated with me. A really easy to understand book which was enjoyable and informative. Excellent and to be recommended to anyone thinking of the self-employment route.

It’s always lovely to read that I’ve helped someone, and I’ll keep saying it – reviews really help all authors, especially indie ones!

Relaunch of my first two business books – new titles and covers!

Hello there! On Libro’s fifth birthday, it seemed appropriate to officially announce the relaunch of my first two business books, “How I Survived my First Year of Full-Time Self-Employment: Going it Alone at 40” and “Running a Successful Business After the Start-up Phase, or, Who are you Calling Mature?

After doing some market research, I swapped the titles and subtitles around, to clarify what the books are about and to make them easier to find. You can find more about each book by following the links above, but here are the new full print covers – and they’re available now from Amazon!

Print cover - how I survived my first year of full-time self-employment

Running a successful business after the start-up phaseI’ve also relaunched and redesigned my Omnibus e-book edition, which combines both books in one special value volume:

Your guide to starting and building your businessPop to the books’ individual pages for more information including where and how to buy.

… And here they are in person!

Liz Broomfield print books