Archive for the ‘books’ Category.

Price drop — Point, Click, and Save

Go figure! Amazon just dropped their pre-order price on Point, Click, and Save: Mashup Mom’s Guide to Saving and Making Money Online down to $13.46! (Not that I’m obsessively looking at my pretty book cover on Amazon or anything…) I wasn’t going to mention it again already, but thought I’d note the price drop. I’m not sure if I should be pleased that maybe more people might buy it, or sad for the lost royalties. :)

Not just for librarians anymore!

And now, for something completely different! If you’re reading this, you probably know that I tend to write stuff. For librarians. Well, now I’ve written something for everyone! So I hope you’ll pardon the brief detour into self-promotion, especially those of you who are public librarians, because… your patrons need this book. ;

So what’s it about?

Point, Click, and Save: Mashup Mom’s guide to saving and making money online addresses the best way to ride out today’s turbulent economic times. It talks about everything from finding and using coupons to their best effect, to playing the grocery and drugstore games, to sorting out legitimate online work-at-home opportunities; it explains how to mash up your money-saving and money-making strategies to find the balance that works for you and your family. The book honors the reality that taking the time in to strategize, coupon, and plan is in itself a job, and the fact that many “stay-at-home moms” also bring in an income through side work. It recognizes that the internet provides our best resource for connecting with each other and finding up-to-date information, coupons, and deals. Lastly, Point, Click, and Save focuses on realistic ways to save and change our spending habits, rather than highlighting exceptional shopping trips staged for tv cameras.

I’m so excited to have the opportunity to share these strategies with others! If you’ve been following the Mashup Mom blog, Point, Click, and Save will be a good wrap-up and reference — and if you’re new, or if there are others you want to get into couponing and saving, it can help you get a good start!

Options, we like options.

Preorder Point, Click, and Save

Check it out! Or… order it for your library so others can check it out.

/end shameless self promotion

How not to promote your crappy self-published book, part II

I just received the following email:

My name is Sterling Nixon.  I recently published a book entitled The Sea Kings of Rome: Champions of the Naumachia through Black Rose Writing (ISBN 978-0-9825823-2-9).  The novel is appropriate for individuals 13 and up, and yet complex enough to thrill adult readers.  It is as historically accurate as it is exciting.
Publishing a book is a new experience for me and I am constantly searching for ways to increase my local exposure.  I know how influential library selections can be and I am hoping that The Sea Kings of Rome: Champions of the Naumachia is something that you will consider stocking in your library (It is available for sale on the Barnes and Noble website).  I am also interested in setting up a local Q&A at the library-if that is possible.
The Sea Kings of Rome chronicles the lives of two famous gladiators and their difficult choices between good and evil.  My book reflects the moral and ethical struggles we all encounter in life.  The Sea Kings of Rome is a story of redemption and culminates in the Roman Coliseum with an account of the only gladiatorial battle ever recorded.

Thank you for your time.  Please feel free to contact me with any questions..

You just can’t make this stuff up. I’m guessing that wherever my new buddy Sterling found me, it wasn’t from this blog… :) Maybe it was at “the library.” You know the one, The Library. Or maybe Benito Lombardi told him.

How not to promote your crappy self-published book

I’m getting more and more of these types of emails, and they’re really starting to irk me. So, here’s one from yesterday for your mocking pleasure:

I am a history professor and advisor to the local chapter of the Roman Historical Society. The Roman Historical Society is a society focused on preserving roman history by ways of education, living history, and research. I recently read a historical fiction that is detailed and painstakingly accurate regarding Roman genre. The book also details the only recorded gladiatorial fight in the Roman coliseum. I ask you to please make one or more copies of this book available in the library for the benefit of our members. The book is entitled “The Sea Kings of Rome – Champions of the Naumachia” – ISBN 978-0-9825823-2-9.
Thank you in advance,
Dr. Benito Lombardi

Uh huh. First of all, “Dr. Benito Lombardi,” I don’t work in “the library.” (You know — THE library.) In fact, I don’t work in any library. The fact that you can use Google and found my name associated with the word “library” somewhere doesn’t really count. I’m glad that you enjoyed reading “a historical fiction,” but here’s a current fiction: You aren’t “Dr. Benito Lombardi.” In fact, I’m pretty sure that your real name is Sterling Nixon, and that you enjoy writing repetitive 5-star reviews of your own book on Barnes & Noble. (Psst — try Amazon next; more people will see them there.)

And as for Black Rose Writing, there’s a classy vanity publisher. I can’t decide what I like better: The owner’s 5-star reviews of his own books and other Black Rose-related books on Amazon, or their fancy website full of grammatical errors and misspellings.

I’m pleased to see that no WorldCat libraries own this title yet. Here’s one for you, “Dr. Benito Lombardi” — no one buy this. This belongs in no libraries, partially because if it’s written as badly as this email (ooh! and the author’s blog!) it has no place in a library, and partially because liars shouldn’t be rewarded.

LJ Professional Media reviews


I was over on the Library Journal site today reading their “Professional Media” reviews. How many books this month? All of three. I’m disappointed in LJ, because they only review professional titles once a month or less often, and the columns have been getting shorter and shorter. Am I alone in wishing for more coverage of professional titles in the literature?

However, I was pleased to see a review of Nicole Engard’s Library Mashups today. (Yes, I edited it, but it is nonetheless fantastic.)

On authors and hissy fits

I always get a kick out of reading about authors’ overreactions to negative reviews, but it’s been a while since I’ve read some great ones. (See all the fun from last April for more along these lines!)

So, I was pleased to see some new rantiness appear. Here is just part of a mind-boggling example:

In last Sunday’s New York Times Book Review, Caleb Crain reviewed Alain de Botton’s The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work. While regular NYTBR watchers like Levi Asher welcomed the spirited dust-up, even Asher remained suspicious about Crain’s doubtful assertions and dense prose.

But on Sunday, de Botton left numerous comments at Crain’s blog, writing, “I will hate you till the day I die and wish you nothing but ill will in every career move you make. I will be watching with interest and schadenfreude.”

You don’t see a lot of schadenfreude in blog comments these days! Maybe it’s all moved to Facebook and twitter, too. :) Oh wait — something has! Check this out — Alice Hoffman (although she later apologized and deleted) got mad enough to post the private email address and phone number of one of her negative reviewers to her twitter feed. Hmm. Maybe I should finally get myself a twitter account after all, apparently I’m missing all the fun…

More ITI author signings at ALA!

The following authors will be signing at the Information Today, Inc. booth [#4525] on Saturday July 11 from 1:00 — 2:00 p.m.

Tasha Squires, author of Library Partnerships: Making Connections Between School and Public Libraries

Pop culture mavens Sophie Brookover and Elizabeth Burns, authors of Pop Goes the Library: Using Pop Culture to Connect With Your Whole Community

They. All. Rock! Come on by :) .

The Accidental Library Marketer — Check it out!


It’s been an honor and a privilege to work with a number of ITI authors, but I was never so intimidated as when editing Kathy Dempsey’s The Accidental Library Marketer — given that she edited some of my own earliest work over at Computers in Libraries magazine. Be that as it may, her due-out-any-day-now book, quite simply, rocks. Get it. Now. In tough economic times her succinct and down-to-earth advice is more important than ever.

Also, if you’re headed to ALA next weekend, be sure to stop by Kathy’s book signing at the annual Swap & Shop on Sunday July 12. Swap & Shop runs from 11-1:30 in the special events area in the exhibit hall — so you can go even if, like me, you’re only springing for the exhibits pass! :) And check out her new site at — the URL sums it up right there.

Awful library books blog FTW

This blog cracks me up. I think I weeded some of these books once upon a time…

How she really sold all those books

Seen on “Not Always Right” the other day:

Customer: “Do you happen to sell that Harry Potter book?”

Me: “Yes, sir, we do. Would you like me to show you where they are?”

Customer: “If it’s no trouble…”

Me: “No trouble at all. ”

(I lead him over to the children’s section and hand him the first book in the series.)

Me: “Here you are. Is there anything else I can help you with?”

Customer: “No, I think that’s all I need.”

(The customer shovels a dozen copies of the same book into his arms.)

Customer: “The church is having a book burning tonight and I just need to make sure I bring enough.”

Me: *laughs*

Customer: *completely serious* “I’m not joking.”

Me: “Oh. Well, you do realize that there are now four books in the series?”

(I knew there was a logical explanation!)