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Advice from NYT bestselling author Guy Kawasaki

Posted by Maria Murnane | April 2, 2013

I recently had the pleasure of meeting the delightful Guy Kawasaki, a popular speaker and author of 10 books, including Reality Check, The Art of the Start, and most recently APE, his new book on self-publishing. I told him about this blog and asked if he had any words of wisdom for my readers. With a sly chuckle, yet also speaking seriously, he said the following:

“Don’t be paranoid.”

Take a page from Guy's book

I asked what he meant, and he said that authors, both traditionally and self-published, are often afraid to try anything unconventional. They think someone is going to come along, tap them on the shoulder, and say, “Hey now, you shouldn’t do that.”

His attitude is, “Why shouldn’t I?”

An example he gave was one of his recent books, Enchantment. When he finished the first draft, he sent out a Google+ message to his hordes of followers and asked for volunteer beta readers willing to provide feedback. Several hundred people replied, and you know what Guy did? He emailed them the entire manuscript.

Yes, he emailed his entire unpublished manuscript to hundreds of strangers. For “security,” all he did was ask them to check a box saying they promised not to forward it to anyone else. A simple promise, nothing more.

What happened? He got a lot of thoughtful feedback that helped him improve his book, and those who provided that feedback became emotionally invested evangelists, eager to see the book succeed. In fact, dozens of them posted positive Amazon.com reviews the very day the book came out.

Guy’s idea worked out pretty well, don’t you think? I may have to try it myself.

To learn more about Guy Kawasaki and his books, you can visit www.guykawasaki.com.

This blog post originally appeared on CreateSpace.com. Reprinted with permission. © 2013 CreateSpace, a DBA of On-Demand Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved.

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One Response to “Advice from NYT bestselling author Guy Kawasaki”

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  • Dear Maria Murnane,
    thank you for this useful information.Glad to hear from you and Gay Kawasaki. :) My congrats to you on the publication of your new book.I’m a writer and translator. I’d like to read any of Kawasaki’s bestsellers and to initiate translating it into Armenian. I’ve translated W. Faulkner’s “Sartoris” and Kurt Vonnegut’s “Bluebeard” and several other works from English into Armenian. I’m an author of five fiction books, on the whole I’ve got twelve gooks published. I’d like to see a collection of my stories published abroad.
    Thank you!
    With best regards, Diana Hambardzumyan

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