Category Archives: Nonfiction

Book Review 145: Perennial Seller by Ryan Holiday

It has always fascinated me on what makes art sells over the long term.  Whether Star Wars from Film, Harry Potter from Books, Michael Jackson’s Thriller from Music, or Seinfeld from TV, it’s been interesting to see what makes the public connect with certain artistic works over the years. I have read plenty of internet articles about this topic, but it was great to read a full book about it.

Perennial Seller by Ryan Holiday argues for timeless principles that have made creative works like Seinfeld and Star Wars last for several generations, a rock band like Iron Maiden have a sustainable music career and legacy despite not having their records played on the radio or top 40 hits, or an author like Stefan Zweig who cultivated a loyal support of readers throughout his career.

The book is divided into four sections: The Creative Process, Positioning, Marketing, and Platform.  Holiday provides examples in each section of the book revealing that long-term artistic success is not a matter of luck or being picked by the artistic gods as deemed worthy for perennial seller status.  Principles like “I’m meant to do this” or “This is my life’s work” during the creative process, getting proper feedback and finding the right genre in the positioning stage, understanding that you have to get out and sell it in the marketing stage, or finding the right audience and connecting with them on an ongoing basis in the platform stage.  These things combined give any work of art a chance at becoming a perennial seller.

Perennial Seller is an excellent book covering a topic that has long needed examination.  I have learned quite a bit from reading it and when you start highlighting a book after the first pages, you know that book is a keeper on your bookshelf.  I recommend Perennial Seller for all creative types who want to know more about how a work of art lasts in pop culture. It will be one of my favorite reads of 2018.


Book Review 133: Permission Marketing by Seth Godin

“The marketer is not in control, the consumer is. And the consumer is selfish. Consumers care very little about you, your company, your products, your career, or your family. They’re not likely to spend time trying to discover how you can help them solve their problems. The heart of Permission Marketing is giving the stranger… Continue Reading

Book Review 110: Make Art Make Money by Elizabeth Hyde Stevens

Is it possible to succeed as an artist and entrepreneur? Elizabeth Hyde Stevens examines this question in her book, Make Art Make Money, about how Jim Henson navigated the parallel worlds of art and business to become one of the greatest American artist-entrepreneurs. Make Art Make Money explores how this gentle man had an innate… Continue Reading

Book Review 95: The Successful Author Mindset by Joanna Penn

Digital Publishing has spawned the rise of the indie author movement over the past several years.  As a result, there is a lot of books these days about how to become a successful indie author and how to make a living with your writing. However, there are only a few of those books dealing with… Continue Reading

Book Review 94: Deep Work by Cal Newport

“Great creative minds think like artists but work like accountants.” (David Brooks) “When you work, work hard. When you’re done, be done.” Those two quotes from Deep Work by Cal Newport summarizes my feelings toward this excellent book. Newport introduces deep work as to counteract the distracted world we live with in the social media… Continue Reading

Book Review 82: The Introvert Entrepreneur by Beth Buelow

Introvert Entrepreneur seems like an oxymoronic term.  Can an introvert really be an entrepreneur?  Well, Beth Buelow makes an excellent case for it in her book titled with the same term. I heard about Beth Buelow from one of my favorite podcasts, The Creative Penn, when she was interviewed by Author-Entrepreneur Joanna Penn. That interview… Continue Reading

Book Review 70: For Love or Money by Susan Kaye Quinn

“Writing challenges me to discover who I am. Publishing challenges me to remember it.” “You have to work like crazy, be smart, somehow invest every particle of emotion into the book itself, but then fling it out in the world and be ruthlessly pragmatic about how to sell it.” Those two quotes (of many that… Continue Reading

Book Review 58: Discoverability by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

The Indie Publishing movement of the past half-dozen years has changed the course of the publishing industry. Publishing books have become a lot easier thanks to eBooks, Amazon, and other Print-on-Demand (POD) publishers.  Would-be-novelists (like myself) that have tried to break into Traditional publishing have finally found an avenue to get their works out to… Continue Reading