Self-Published Book Review: “Rise of the Gig Leaders”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this month’s featured book review:
rise of the gig leaders neil grant

Rise of the Gig Leaders:
Why Interim Leaders Are Vital In Today’s Organizations

by Neil Grant

ISBN: 9781977200662



Interim leaders are becoming essential change agents for organizations in today’s gig economy. To propel their companies forward, human resource professionals, change management specialists, project managers, and all business executives must understand and make use of this changing talent economy. Neil Grant’s Rise of the Gig Leaders: Why Interim Leaders Are Vital in Today’s Organizations provides this understanding.

Grant, himself an interim leader for almost two decades, provides a detailed analysis of the DNA of interim leaders–what defines them and how they add value. Rise of the Gig Leaders is rich in case studies, testimonials, and examples of how interim leadership has made a difference in many organizations. With this knowledge, business leaders and prospective interim leaders will have confidence choosing this as a viable leadership strategy.

 * courtesy of


An expert examines the role of interim leaders as an important part of business strategy.

In this debut book, Grant draws on both research and case studies based on his own professional experience working with a variety of companies to make the case for the value of interim executives, or “gig leaders.” The author distinguishes between these interims and acting or consultant executives, seeing the former as high-level workers with specific skills who are hired under short-term contracts to accomplish certain corporate goals, a highly paid professional tier of the broader gig economy. The volume guides readers through evaluating the need for interims using Grant’s copyrighted SCILL model, which describes the five “attributes” of these executives (Savvy, Critical, Impact, Leadership, Legacy). And the author shows how to assess those leaders through GREAT (Gravitas, Resilience, Engagement, Attitude, Transformational) competencies. While the book largely discusses these roles in general terms (“An interim makes the most impact, however, when intentionally hired to deliver specific results that require a leader with experience and dynamism”), case studies offer more concrete examples of the positive use of interims, from refreshing a company’s technology infrastructure to implementing turnaround plans without the complications of long-term employee politics. Grant is clearly experienced and knowledgeable and makes a compelling argument in favor of employing this short-term workforce to execute clearly defined goals. The title’s intended audience is corporate decision-makers who will hire interim leaders. Although readers looking to follow this career path will read glowing descriptions of interims (“An interim has battle scars from crisis management and like a first-responder in a disaster zone, is objective, decisive, and has emotional stability shaped from years of being in the front line”), they will not find guidance on pursuing this road. But for its target audience, the volume is a useful tool for appraising the need for interims and establishing a framework for their success. Although recent research suggests that gig employment is less widespread than previously thought, the author presents a context in which it can be fruitful for both employers and employees.

A thorough and coherent discussion of how companies can make effective use of interim executives as part of the broader gig economy.

Book Trailer



tuesday book review

Thanks for reading!  Keep up with the latest in the world of indie and self-published books by watching this space!

Self Publishing Advisor


From the Archives: “Espresso Book Machine”

Welcome back to our Tuesday segment, where we’ll be revisiting some of our most popular posts from the last few years.  What’s stayed the same?  And what’s changed?  We’ll be updating you on the facts, and taking a new (and hopefully refreshing) angle on a few timeless classics of Self Publishing Advisor.


[ Originally posted: January 31st, 2012 ]

The Espresso Book Machine® (the “EBM”), which Time Magazine named an “Invention of the Year,” provides a revolutionary direct-to-consumer distribution model for books. Put simply, the EBM is an automated book-making machine. The operator selects a title to print, and within a few minutes a book emerges, with a full-color cover, trimmed to an exact size, and indistinguishable from the publisher’s version. As we say, “Hot off the press!”

Currently, Espresso Book Machines have been set-up in select universities and libraries including:

  • New York Public Library
  • University of Michigan Library
  • World Bank InfoShop, Washington
  • New Orleans Public Library
  • San Francisco Internet Archive
  • Manchester Center Northshire Bookstore
  • University of Alberta
  • McMaster University Bookstore
  • London Newsstand UK
  • Library of Alexandria, Egypt
  • Melbourne, Australia Angus & Robertson Bookstore

New locations are constantly being added. The EBM is a great opportunity for self-published authors. Some self-publishing companies, such as Outskirts Press, offer this marketing option. By purchasing this option, your book will be available to be ordered, printed, and sold at every current and future Espresso Book Machine location. To learn more about this option, contact your self-publishing company.

– by Cheri Breeding

It’s been rather a long time since we’ve touched on the subject of the Espresso Book Machine here at Self Publishing Advisor, despite the fact that the above post from 2012 remains one of our most popular posts of all time.  What is it about this machine––what’s the big deal?  And more importantly, is it delivering upon its promise as a revolution for the self-publishing print-on-demand (POD) business?

espresso book machine
photo by Chuck Zovko of Columbia College Today

There’s a long and a short answer to both of these questions, of course.  The EBM is not just a pretty gadget that happens to churn out new books as quickly as the average human takes to brew an espresso; it’s a gadget that has the potential to close the last leg of the loop and put full creative (and financial) rights into the hands of those who have historically been excluded from the publishing process.  I’m speaking of the author.  While its many bells and whistles are nice features––like the database of rare or out-of-print books you can resurrect in all their original glory––the real appeal of the EBM is that it literally as well as physically puts a high-quality printed book in your hand in around seven minutes.  For the average self-publishing author, the experience of holding and experiencing the weight of all those sleepless nights and odd hours writing is simply unattainable––that is, without a service like the EBM making a limited run financially manageable.  Holding a clean and professional copy of your baby is a reward in and of itself, and the expediency for which the EBM is renowned makes it easy to share the joy of your book.  That’s the magic of the Espresso Book Machine!

espresso book machine
photo by the University of Arizona

As for the EBM’s outlook and longevity, the news seems to be good.  The machines aren’t available “just anywhere” yet, but they’re becoming less of a trial to find.  I recently had the pleasure of witnessing an EBM at work in the University of Arizona’s library, where undergraduates printed out copies of research-related texts, graduates printed out beautiful bound editions of their thesis projects, and professors printed out volumes of their own masterworks-in-progress.

Members of the public, too, have made the UofA’s EBM a popular destination––and it’s not just an Arizonan phenomenon!  According to Canada’s The Windsor Starthe Windsor Public Library’s EBM alone produced “10,699 books” between 2012 and July 2015, when the article was published.  Says librarian Sue Perry, the EBM’s installation “led to the birth of a writer’s group and gave people a way to publish their work even if they only want one book.” Now that’s quite a testimonial.

According to WorldCrunch, the EBM and its competitors are on track to “save” the print publishing industry.  At the Paris Book Fair, the CEO of the EBM’s main shareholder (reinsurance company SCOR) went on the record to say that the Espresso Book Machine and those who use it “will be the invisible hand that will adjust the market,” eliminating what he called “economies of scale” by making it possible to print either 1 copy of a book or 1000 without the gymnastics of traditional publishing arrangements.  WordCrunch goes on to note that, a decade after stealing the limelight of both tech and print-on-demand industries, the Espresso Book Machine is still “experimental but game-changing.”  And that’s about as good of news as one might hope for!

We look forward to seeing what 2016 holds for the Espresso Book Machine.

If you have any other ideas, I’d love to hear them.  Drop me a line in the comments section below and I’ll respond as quickly as I can.  ♠

KellyABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog,

Self-Publishing Week in Review: 01/06/15

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry. This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Tuesday to find out the hottest news.

 How Self-Publishing Services Blossomed in 2014

This article talks about how hybrid authors have become the new norm and how many authors are rejecting traditional publishing all together. It also shares insight on what to expect from self-publishing in 2015 and recaps some of the highlights of 2014.

Amazon Offers All-You-Can-Eat Books. Authors Turn Up Noses.

This New York Times author discusses why authors are angry about Amazon’s new subscription service and how all-you-can-eat type services are devaluing artists. This is a fascinating read for all writers  and readers.

H.M. Ward’s Publishing Predictions For 2015

Successful self-published author H.M. Ward shares predictions for 2015 in this Media Bistro article. Topics discussed include branding, technology, and interactivity. This is an interesting read for all writers.

If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog at

Self-Publishing and Technology

Technology plays a huge part in the self-publishing process. Years ago, authors would hand carry their manuscripts to a printer for typesetting. Today, almost everything is done via the internet and computers. At Outskirts Press, 90% of all manuscripts we receive are submitted in a Microsoft Word document. Hardcopies, manuscripts printed on paper, are becoming a thing of the past. Occasionally, we will receive a hardcopy. In these cases, we have to rekey the document so we have a digital file that can be manipulated during formatting. This requires the publishing company to do extra work and increases the chance of errors. 

Below are a few basic guidelines to make the self-publishing process as stress-free as possible for the author:

    1. Own a current personal computer with internet access. A high speed connection is preferable.
    2. Have the ability to navigate the internet and the self-publishing company’s website.
    3. Use a current version of a common word processing program such a Microsoft Word and have a reasonable proficiency with the program.
    4. Have the ability to send and receive emails with attachments.

If you have difficult working with technology, find someone who can help you. You may also consider taking a course on computers to help you improve your skills.

ABOUT WENDY STETINA: Wendy Stetina is a sales and marketing professional with over 30 years experience in the printing and publishing industry. Wendy works as the Director of Author Services for Outskirts Press. The Author Services Department is composed of knowledgeable customer service reps and publishing consultants; and together, they all focus on educating authors on the self-publishing process in order to help them publish the book of their dreams. Whether you are a professional looking to take your career to the next level with platform-driven non-fiction, or a novelist seeking fame, fortune, and/or personal fulfillment, Wendy Stetina can put you on the right path.