making progress

I’m always excited when I have three to review, I don’t know why but it makes me feel like I’ve done something with the past week. I’ve modified my schedule so that during my lunch on the train home I have some additional reading time. I remembered that it’s easier to eat/read than it is to eat/knit. Sure it cuts a bit into the knitting, but I miss reading as much as I used to before-house.

The Wall Street Journal. Complete Small Business Guidebook The Wall Street Journal. Complete Small Business Guidebook
by Colleen DeBaise
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Is this slender 240 page book indeed complete as the title would leave you to believe? Within the covers it offers a range of educational and informative parcels for the small business and the small business owner from Startup (planning, funding, financial statements) to Running (management, legal, marketing, hiring) to the essential quest of Work-Life Balance.

I believe DeBaise provides a great general overview and the layout and formatting will guide the reader to areas they would like to learn more about through other publications and resources.

However, while many of the stories to give a personal edge to the book are timeless and ones I found quite useful, I’m concerned that in time some of these examples will feel overdone and deter future readers from paying attention to the important lesson. I hope I am wrong, but I find even today I’m likely to tune out Katrina based disaster planning lessons and more likely to listen if it’s a water leak on the 42nd floor threatening boxes of important documents.

As a small business owner (LLC sole proprietorship, technology consulting) for the past four and a half years I found this a useful book as I look to improve upon my weak-points. In the next few months I plan to finally launch another small enterprise (structure yet unknown, handmade goods) and I found this a nice guidebook to help me through these final planning stages. I think this book is best used in conjunction with other references, such as those specified by DeBaise or others, such as the NOLO guides I am most familiar with.

(note: this review is for an uncorrected proof I purchased at Strand for $1.99. Follow at your own risk until I can review a proper copy after the 20091229 release)

Elizabeth and Her German Garden (Virago Modern Classics) Elizabeth and Her German Garden
by Elizabeth von Arnim
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I discovered this short book while reading the first volume of LMM’s journals. She wrote something to the effect of … A yummy read I can curl up with, how I long to be among the trees. (That is NOT a direct quote, I returned LMM’s journals to the library months ago). By that description I was intrigued and also quite curious if there was any chance a book she read then was still in print. Imagine my surprise and delight when I discovered a copy in circulation at my local public library (go on and donate to your public library. I’ll wait).

While a work of fiction, Elizabeth uses a style of long rambling journal entries of her trials and triumphs with her gardens and that which keeps her from fully enjoying them — be it her husband, the babies, her position in society…

What a fun, charming, delightful read to curl up with!

Forerunner Forerunner
by Andre Norton
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I picked this up at Book-off for $1 and am now looking for the rest of the series. It’s interesting.