A Bit About My Book

I don’t have a photo of my upcoming book I approved it conceptually after designing a rough look and feel and then letting creative graphic artists do there job, so that’s why they’re no picture accompanying  this post.  I’ve been getting a lot of questions about the book so I thought I would address them now.

Why a book?  That’s a great question, about 15 years I had so many people telling me that I should write a book that I decided to write a book proposal and see what kind of response I would get.  I never even finished the proposal.  I did finish a rough draft and ran it by some published author friends of mine and they gave me notes on what I had to include; it seemed like way too much work so I scrapped the idea. (I never really wanted to do a book anyway, but when so many people tell you to do something you really need to listen.)  Fast forward 15 years and one of my author friends (who now has two best selling books and is working on his third) asked me whatever happened to my book, I made some lame excuse and he said he would talk to his publisher, who later told me that he insisted that she read at least three of my blog articles.  She did and called me soon afterwards.

What’s it about? It’s about a boy how finds a magical television set…NO! It’s about safety what the hell did you think it was going to be about?  Initially the book was going to just be 20 or 30 of my blog posts.  But after polling my subscribers and getting a great response I realized I needed to reach out to my old magazine publishers and get permission to use some of those articles, then I thought, “why not include some obscure, hard-to-find guest blogs, and magazine articles from around the world.” Even then I wasn’t satisfied, I figured, who wants to read that when you can get it all on line, so for every  third existing piece I tried to write a new piece. I say “tried” because after my editing process I don’t know the ratio of new material to republished but I am happy with it.

What’s it called? The first step in the process, believe it or not, was to get a title and a cover. I initially called it  I Know My Shoes Are Untied, Mind Your Own Damned Business: An Iconoclast’s View Of Safety but was persuaded to drop the word “Damned” because many store won’t carry it with a course word in the title

Is it Self-Published? No, and with all due respect to all the people who self publish, most self-published books I have read are crap.  They ramble, they repeat themselves, they…well just plain suck.  I read a self-published book on nudging in safety and in the hole book the author only made two good points and the rest was poorly written dreck.  Most authors need a professional editor, a professional publisher, and a professional agent.  I got all of them.

So if it’s professionally edited how much of your voice will be lost? None.  My publisher made it clear that only I was to touch the book.  She said that she feared that a professional editor would compromise my unique voice and writing style.  I worked hard to remove all the incomplete sentences and punctuation errors that so many people hate, and they will clean up the typos when they typeset it but the rest of it is all me.  I should note that I didn’t change a thing in the reprints of my published materials, they have already been published and edited so changing them now violates my agreement with them.

How does it cost? Well my preliminary draft came in at about 500 pages and would have cost $22.95, I decided to cut it down to around 200 pages and forgot the hardcover to bring the price down to $14.95 (plus shipping), and while that number is close, we won’t know for sure (give or take 50 cents) until the ink dries. Anyway, you can always expense it or insist that one of your vendors buy it for you.  That’s what I would do, come to think of it I might do that anyway.

Where can I get a copy? A copy, don’t you mean copies for all my friends?  Just kidding.  Pre-orders will be available July 8th and I will have links from this page and others, but pre-orders will only accept PayPal, which I don’t like, but it has something to do with the printer we’re using.  Soon after that it will be available from Amazon and Barns & Nobel, and wherever new books are sold.

Can I get an autographed copy? Yes, I DO get asked this a lot.  I’ll be glad to autograph as many copies as you want, and there are several ways to do that:

  1. Come to a book signing, but since I don’t know when or where (outside of Detroit) these events will take place that may take a while.
  2. Indicate that you would like me to autograph it during the pre-order period.
  3. Buy the book and bring it with you to one of the professional speeches I make at conferences.  I don’t plan to have any books with me at the conferences for two reasons: 1) because I don’t want to lug a bunch of heavy books around with me, and 2) Conferences frown on people marketing materials at professional conferences.
  4. Stalk me and risk having your autograph written in blood.

Will you be touring to promote the book? Well I still have a full time job so any lengthy tour is not likely, but I will be promoting the book through speaking engagements.

Does this mean you will be quitting ERM? No. I intend to work at ERM for as long as they will have me.  It’s a fantastic company that allows me to refuse work that the customer doesn’t really need, it affords me to work with top safety, environmental, and sustainability experts from all over the world, I get to work on really cool projects, and mostly because it has remained hands off when it comes to my writing.

If you have any other questions please feel free to post them under the comments section.