Spark Joy by Marie Kondo

Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying UpSpark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up by Marie Kondō

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I love this book as a companion to the first. First of all the practical knowledge here is just outstanding. She’s right, no one really teaches you how to fold clothes, no one really teaches you how to tidy or store items away properly. Marie Kondo does in this terrific book.

The attention to detail and simple diagrams she uses to explain her processes make everything easy to understand, and after a few false starts, even I picked them up fairly quickly. I must admit it is taking some time to implement some of these techniques but (maybe TMI?) my underwear drawer has never looked better!

I do recommend reading Marie Kondo’s books back to back. It will make more sense, flesh out some questions you may be having, and give you some tips and tricks to carry on tidying.

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The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and OrganizingThe Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondō

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’ve never been obsessed with tidying up or decluttering, but became interested when I found Marie Kondo’s book in the library and decided I was interested enough to read through them at least once.

It’s possible that this book will be going on the “books that changed my life” list. As a potential caveat, nothing in this book is really “new” and mostly just a rendition of common sense that no one put together quite like Marie did.

Case in point: if you have less stuff you have less stuff it clean, less stuff to tidy, and less stuff to store.

I do quite enjoy her idea of sparking joy with your possessions, keeping the things you love, and enjoying those things more often. I recommend this book whole-heartedly to everyone as I think it would change the way anyone would look at their possessions.

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Next Steps for Authors to Maintain and Grow Success by Tyler Wagner

Next Steps For Authors To Maintain And Grow Success: A Guide For Authors To Maintain And Grow Success (Authors Unite Book 7)Next Steps For Authors To Maintain And Grow Success: A Guide For Authors To Maintain And Grow Success by Tyler Wagner

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

So what next? You’ve written, edited, designed, published and marketed your book, now what?

Well….Tyler gives us some ideas. The obvious one is: do it again! Write another book! There are other suggestions, mostly for the non-fiction folks. Use your book to promote your consulting/coaching/speaking/whatever business is the big idea here besides writing more books.

He continues talking about the value of the book and how it can make you more verifiable when talking on any given subject. It drives home the idea that this series was written mostly with non-fiction writers in mind, with a few (very few) crumbs tossed to those who only do fiction.

It is nice that this book was included in the series and didn’t just stop with “you did it!”, and carried on with more ideas to keep going.

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Marketing Tips for Authors by Tyler Wagner

Marketing Tips For Authors: A Marketing Guide For Authors To Become Profitable Authors (Authors Unite Book 6)Marketing Tips For Authors: A Marketing Guide For Authors To Become Profitable Authors by Tyler Wagner

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I liked this book, there is some good information here, and he breaks it down well. First, we talk about book launches, what they are, and why you should have one. This actually took some of the awe and confusion out of a book launch for me, so even with just that, I felt this book was useful.

In the next chapters he divides up the social media platforms, and outlines some simple strategies for marketing on those platforms. He even leaves a chapter open for other platforms and room to grow. I will say though that he focuses heavily on Facebook.

I felt that this was one of the better books in the series as the information here can apply to all books.

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Self Publishing Tips for Writers by Tyler Wagner

Self Publishing Tips For Writers: A Self Publishing Guide For Writers To Become Successful Authors (Authors Unite Book 5)Self Publishing Tips For Writers: A Self Publishing Guide For Writers To Become Successful Authors by Tyler Wagner

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This ebook in the series covers the process of uploading your work of art to Amazon, pricing the book, setting up keywords, book descriptions, setting up the book page and your author page. I am also going to point out that Amazon recently combined their ebook publishing with their paperback publishing so it’s now all on their KDP site.

I told you that so that you know that because of the restructuring on Amazon this book is now slightly out of date with it’s step by step process and some of the references to Createspace (which no longer exists).

Apart from that, I did enjoy the advice on book pricing, keywords, and book descriptions.

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Design Tips for Writers by Tyler Wagner

Design Tips For Writers: A Design Guide For Writers To Get Better At Designing (Authors Unite Book 4)Design Tips For Writers: A Design Guide For Writers To Get Better At Designing by Tyler Wagner

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This is the shortest book in Tyler Wagner’s Authors Unite series, he even admits it himself. There is one reason for this that I can see: he simply tells you to hire a designer (or several). Oh, he does go through how to find one, what you should pay for it (editor James comes back to add his 2 cents), and what a designer should do for you.

There’s a little joke about “judging a book by its cover”, but for the most part that’s all this book is. If you had to skip a book in his series, this would be the one.

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Editing Tips for Writers by Tyler Wagner

Editing Tips For Writers: An Editing Guide For Writers To Get Better At Editing (Authors Unite Book 3)Editing Tips For Writers: An Editing Guide For Writers To Get Better At Editing by Tyler Wagner

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This ebook is where the author shines! He brings in his own editor to add to the information presented here on editing. While there is heavy evidence on getting a professional editor, there is some good information here for editing your own work.

This is where the series deviates from a focus on non-fiction, as editing is something every book needs. James, the editor, gives us detail information on the editing process from his point of view, and then gives us information on how to prepare a rough draft for the editing process.

This ebook is most likely the best book in the series because of the information from the editor and the de-emphasis on genres.

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