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Joining the IBPA board

By Blog

I have some news to share: I have been named to the board of the Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA) for a two-year term, beginning July 1, 2015. The IBPA press release has more details.

I first learned about IBPA after submitting a book to the Ben Franklin Awards program operated by IBPA. The book did not win an award, but I gained something even more important: membership in an organization that is truly aligned with the needs of the independent publishing ecosystem.

While I have worked in various media ventures for decades, I am relatively new to the world of books and ebooks, and still have a lot to learn. Thanks to IBPA’s excellent Independent magazine and the IBPA LinkedIn group, I was able to get up to speed on so many aspects of this industry, especially those related to the business of publishing. The authors of the articles and the IBPA members I have interacted with are true professionals, and the information and advice they shared was invaluable.

I also began to take advantage of the many member benefits offered by IBPA, such as:

  • The cooperative display for IBPA members at the Frankfurt Book Fair. This was a low-cost way to showcase In 30 Minutes titles to prospective foreign licensees without having to travel to Germany. It resulted in a foreign rights deal being signed late last year, based on the boilerplate licensing documentation that IBPA provides to its members for free.
  • Various marketing programs aimed at libraries and booksellers. This was a chance to get titles in front of librarians and independent retailers in the United States.
  • Discounts for Ingram/Lightning Source International, one of the largest print-on-demand services in the world.
  • Discounted membership in IPNE, a regional affiliate of IBPA. Joining IPNE helped me connect with other publishers in New England and take part in IPNE activities.

Through these and other activities such as Publishing University I began to understand that IBPA’s motto, “to help each other achieve and succeed,” is not just a well-meaning phrase. It manifests itself in the many ways the organization conducts its affairs and serves its constituents.

Serving on the board is a way to give back to IBPA and its members, through assisting with IBPA programs, reviewing strategic plans and the organization’s financial health, contributing to the setting of future priorities, outreach, and other activities. It is an honor to be named to the board, and I look forward to serving as a director.

In 30 Minutes: Looking back at 2013, looking forward to 2014

By Blog, Industry

As the founder of i30 Media Corporation, which publishes In 30 Minutes guides, I wanted to write a quick post outlining some of our accomplishments in 2013, and look ahead to 2014.

Although In 30 Minutes guides were launched in the summer of 2012, the company wasn’t launched until the beginning of this year. I started out with a bang in the first few weeks of January 2013, incorporating the company, applying for a trademark, and setting up the other systems that would help get In 30 Minutes guides off the ground. At the time, there were only three titles (Dropbox In 30 Minutes, Google Drive & Docs In 30 Minutes, and Excel Basics In 30 Minutes) but over the next 12 months the family of guides expanded to nearly 10 titles, including LinkedIn In 30 Minutes, Twitter In 30 Minutes, and C Diff In 30 Minutes.

Readers were impressed. You can see the reviews on Amazon and in Goodreads, but I also received emails from people who really liked the In 30 Minutes concept of easy-to-understand guides to mildly complex topics. The tone, the humor, the screenshots, the low price — all of these elements made for a great package that resonated with people all over the world. When I started getting messages from readers who had spontaneously purchased multiple titles, I knew that I was on the right track.

There were other developments. Importantly, the guides expanded from just one author (me) to a total of four. The new authors incude Melanie Pinola, Derek Slater, and Dr. J. Thomas Lamont. I would like to thank all of them for their hard work in getting their manuscripts ready for publication, and helping with various promotional efforts. They proved themselves to be true professionals, not only in their ability to work within the In 30 Minutes format, but also in the creation of high-quality content that helped readers understand mildly complex topics in a relatively short period of time. Melanie even won an award for her efforts (see LinkedIn In 30 Minutes Honored In The 2013 USA Best Book Awards).

Sales of certain titles have been steady. A few of the guides have gotten into the “Top 100” lists in various categories in Amazon, and the company has been profitable since the beginning. Authors are rewarded for their hard work with a generous royalty rate (if you’re interested in learning more, read this post for prospective authors), and the proceeds have helped i30 Media expand into new topic areas (more on that below).

I have to admit not every title has sold well. I’ve written about the struggles with Excel Basics In 30 Minutes elsewhere (see “Using metrics to turn around a failing title” in my PBS MediaShift post How to Boost E-Book Sales by Tracking Marketing Tactics). I have also taken one title out of circulation (iPod Touch In 30 Minutes) and relaunched Online Content Marketing In 30 Minutes. I won’t analyze what happened with those guides here, but I am happy to say that in the case of the latter title, author Derek Slater and I have repurposed some of the content into a new short-read format, titled Content Marketing: Recycling & Reuse – How your best online content can attract and engage new customers. These types of experiments speaks to the Lean Media philosophy I have imbued into this venture, which involves constant iteration, close communication with authors and other stakeholders, and learning from both successes and failures.

Easy Chinese Recipes cookbookWhat does 2014 hold? January will see a slew of new releases, including Easy Chinese Recipes In 30 Minutes and the short chapter about content marketing recycling mentioned earlier. Windows 8 Basics In 30 Minutes is currently being written by a new author, and may come out by the end of the month.

I will also continue the Lean Media spirit of innovation and constant experimentation in everything we do. In the publishing front, I am preparing the first In 30 Minutes title with embedded video (Easy Chinese Recipes In 30 Minutes) as well as expansion into new topic areas. I have some interesting things lined up in the sales & marketing arena, including expansion of educational licensing and an interesting partnership in the works for one title (sorry, I can’t reveal details yet!). I am also reaching out to new retail partners, who I think will appreciate In 30 Minutes concept for their customers. I have also started writing a personal-finance focused title, scheduled for release in the spring.

As always, I appreciate the feedback from readers and observers alike. Post comments below, or email ian -at- in30minutes dot com to share your thoughts.

Educational License for LinkedIn In 30 Minutes

By Blog

We recently began offering educational licenses to In 30 Minutes guides. Here are the terms for the Educational License for LinkedIn In 30 Minutes:

Educational License Terms

  • LinkedIn In 30 Minutes is provided to the purchasing educational institution under the terms of a non-transferable, one-year educational license.
  • This Educational License applies to the PDF, .epub, and .mobi versions of LinkedIn In 30 Minutes.
  • The Educational License is valid for one year from the date of purchase or the start of the subscription.
  • The purchasing institution warrants that copies of the files shall only be distributed to students, faculty, and staff of the school.
  • The purchasing institution may not rent, sell, or redistribute copies of the digital content to any other people, or make the files publicly available on any network, device, storage service, or Internet-connected computer.
  • The purchasing institution may not create derivative works from the contents of the guide, or encourage others to do so.
  • The digital content is provided “AS IS” and neither the author nor publisher i30 Media Corporation shall have any obligation to provide maintenance, support, enhancements or modifications thereto. i30 Media Corporation specifically disclaim all express and implied warranties of any kind including, but not limited to, any warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose and non-infringement. In no event shall i30 Media Corporation or the author be liable to any party for direct, indirect, special, incidental, exemplary or consequential damages however caused and on any theory of liability arising in any way related to the digital content, even if i30 Media Corporation or the author has been advised of the possibility of such damages. To the maximum extent not prohibited by law or regulation, the purchasing institution and affiliates further assume all liability for their use, reproduction, display, or distribution of the digital content and agree to indemnify and hold harmless i30 Media Corporation and the author from and against any and all claims, suits, actions, demands and judgments arising therefrom.
  • Any use, reproduction or distribution of the digital content which is not in accordance with this Educational License shall automatically revoke all rights granted to the purchasing institution.
  • This Educational License does not grant any rights in or to any intellectual property owned by i30 Media Corporation except those rights expressly granted hereunder.

New paperback edition of PATRICK released in the U.S.

By Blog

New paperback edition of PATRICK released in the U.S.


PATRICK: A novel by Kevin G. McGuireNewton, Mass., October 21 – Publisher i30 Media has just released a new paperback edition of PATRICK by author Kevin G. McGuire. The novel, set in New York in the 1980s, relates to a story of a young man using a wheelchair who has several coming-of-age experiences during a visit to a New York City hospital. The author’s statement about the book and how it relates to his own experience growing up is published below.

The i30 Media edition of PATRICK (ISBN 978-1939924094) can be purchased online via patricknovel.com or in bookstores around the country. International editions will be available in November.


In 1968, at the age of seven, I was struck by an intoxicated driver while playing baseball. This accident left me paralyzed from the waist down and has since forced me to use a wheelchair. Every summer following the accident, I was required to check into a New York City hospital for one week of physical evaluations and tests.

At this hospital, I was treated by the same physical therapists, nurses, and doctors; I was also assigned the same room. This room was invariably occupied with individuals who were from different ethnic, social, and economic backgrounds. They were admitted to the hospital for various reasons.

I quickly realized that no matter how different my roommates were, the bonding that took place during these short visits was incredible. It was amazing both in celerity, as well as intensity. Our injuries, sicknesses, and the hospital room seemed to insulate us from the prejudices and hatred of the outside world.

I also discovered that as quickly as this bonding took hold in the hospital room, it left just as quickly as we returned to our natural environments. All the promises about visiting and keeping in touch vanished as soon as we were discharged. More importantly, the prejudices that dissipated within our hospital boundaries reappeared as we left our cocoon.

At the age of seventeen, I shared the most intense seven days of my life with three roommates at this New York City hospital. I will always love but will never see or talk with my roommates again.

I entered the hospital that week not yet an adult, but left no longer a child.

PATRICK is inspired by those seven days.


For more information about PATRICK, please visit the official PATRICK website located at patricknovel.com. For other inquiries, please contact Ian Lamont at i30 Media at ian@i30media.com or 617 213-0811.