Got a Book in You? Go APE.

APE: How to Publish a BookGot a book in you, pounding its chest to be written? Get Guy Kawasaki’s latest book, coauthored with Shawn Welch: APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur—How to Publish a Book.

As an author on the verge of publishing my own first book, I found myself nodding in agreement with APE page after page. Kawasaki and Welch know what they’re talking about, and they share this knowledge in a clear, friendly, inspiring way.

APE comprises three parts, reflecting the three main terms in the title: Author, Publish, Entrepreneur. All three parts give excellent advice and examples. I got the most from the third part, Entrepreneur, because I know next to nothing about marketing a book, and because I’m motivated. I’ve devoted two years to creating a book that I love, a book that I believe in, a book that I can’t wait to share with those readers who will love and believe in it too. I want to do everything I can to help this book (Word Up!—perhaps you’ve heard of it?) finds those readers. APE has given me idea after idea.

Even if you already know a lot about writing, publishing, and marketing books, APE has things to teach you. Did you know that “one of the advantages of self-publishing is that you can alter your pricing to see how it affects sales”? Did you know that on Google+, Facebook, and Twitter, “the life of a post and its comments is two to four hours”? Did you know that some authors now forego the traditional book tour in favor of a blog tour, allowing them to make “appearances” without leaving home?

Kawasaki and Welch know.

Want proof that these guys know what they’re talking about when it comes to authoring, publishing, and entrepreneurship? APE releases on January 7—one week away as I write, as in one week in the future, as in the book isn’t even officially out yet—and already they have 185 customer reviews on Amazon (4.9 out of 5 stars at that).

I have one quibble with APE. (Who’d trust a book review without a quibble?) The King Kong–like cover image almost kept me from making the purchase. The gargantuan gorilla making off with a hunk of skyscraper didn’t grab me. Sure, the big, hairy mammal got my attention. But I wondered, for whom does the beast roar? It didn’t roar for me. When I asked Kawasaki about this image in a TweetChat yesterday, he explained that the ape is “tearing up NY publishers.”* Okay. In retrospect, I buy the symbolism. But my first glance at the cover (and a first glance is all most authors can hope for) didn’t make me want to buy the book.

Now that I’ve read it, I’m itching to get going on my new, monstrously long to-do list.

Got a giant itch to create an “artisanal” book of your own? Go APE. Warning: Don’t read this book in bed. You’ll keep hopping up to take actions.

January 27 Update: #1 Amazon Bestseller in 20 Days

Want proof that these authors know what they’re talking about? At this moment, just 20 days after APE launched, the Kindle Edition has nailed #1 spots in at least two Amazon categories for nonfiction reference books: “Publishing & Books” and “Authorship.” In fact, it’s #1 for its highest-level category: “Education & Reference.” And it has been in the top 100 for 19 of its 20 days on the market. Try aping that performance.

APE the book

About the Authors

Guy Kawasaki Guy Kawasaki is the author of APE, What the Plus!, Enchantment, and nine other books. He is also the co-founder of, an “online magazine rack” of popular topics on the web. Previously, he was the chief evangelist of Apple. Kawasaki has a BA from Stanford University and an MBA from UCLA as well as an honorary doctorate from Babson College.
Shawn Welch Shawn Welch is the author of From Idea to App, iOS 5 Core Frameworks, and iOS 6 for Developers as well as the developer of several iOS apps. Previously he worked as a senior media-editor for Pearson Education. He also helped pioneer many of Pearson’s earliest efforts in iPad solutions. Welch has a BS from Kansas State University.

* See the entire TweetChat here: Tweet Me Anything with Guy Kawasaki and Shawn Welch 12/31/12