Category: News

Ruth Livingstone Shortlisted for Rubery Book Award

Our wonderful author, Ruth Livingstone, has just been shortlisted for the non-fiction category of the most prestigious indie award in the UK: The International Rubery Book Award. The Rubery is the longest established book award in the UK for indie/self-published books. The judges have a keen eye for quality, and this is not the first time one of our authors has been selected.

Ruth Livingstone’s book, Walking The English Coast: A Beginner’s Guide, was praised by the judges for its “deceptively straightforward style” and “practical advice that you feel you ought to know, but actually don’t, from what shoes to wear to how to deal with cows”.

ruth livingstone

About Ruth Livingstone

Ruth Livingstone is a GP and realised in her mid-fifties that although she gave people a lot of advice about living a healthy lifestyle, she herself had become a bit of a couch potato. Not one to do things by halves, she set herself a challenge: to walk the entire English coast. Of course, this was a huge undertaking. A steep learning curve followed. She wrote down everything she wished someone had told her before she started (from map-reading to dealing with blisters), and tracked her progress on her fantastic blog:

The blog became so popular that she decided to take it one step further and produce a beautiful full colour, large format book to help and inspire people on their walking journeys, whether they are just dipping their toes in or setting themselves big challenges. She covers everything, from how to map out and plan, what you need to buy (and what is not worth carrying with you), how to keep yourself safe, as well as sharing her own personal anecdotes, so you can learn from her experiences. If you plan to get outdoors this summer, this will have you reaching for your walking boots in no time.

“I wanted my book to read well and to look wonderful too. The editors at I_AM Self-Publishing helped me improve the text and created a great layout for the book – with photographs, highlighted boxes and a series of Top Tips. It was great to bounce ideas around and to have their professional help with the project.” Ruth Livingstone

Walking the english coast spread

Walking the English Coast is available now on Amazon and at other good retailers.


We Made the Smith & Williamson Power 100

Smith & Williamson Power 100

Just a couple of millionaire entrepreneurs sharing their wisdom!

This week, we were invited to a celebration of the most powerful 100 entrepreneurs that give back to the UK’s entrepreneurial community. We were delighted to be included in the Smith & Williamson Power 100, amongst a diverse array of CEOs, MBEs and campaigners.

The event kicked off with a lively panel debate. Steven Bartlett, founder of Social Chain (right in photo), spoke passionately about the power of self-belief, having dropped out of school to become a social media millionaire.  Simon Woodroffe, founder of YO! Sushi (left in photo), advised us to, “Say yes to as much as possible”. Neeta Patel, CEO of New Entrepreneurs Foundation, recognised how much hard work goes into being an entrepreneur. Sarah Luxford, founder of Women in Tech, spoke about the need to encourage women into entrepreneurship as well as tech and, Carl Reader, The Start Up Coach, encouraged everyone to focus on the bottom line.  We were pretty star-struck as we took on board the advice and wisdom from some of the biggest movers and shakers on the UK entrepreneurship scene. We met some incredible people at the event, with great ideas in all sectors from all over the UK. It was really inspirational, talking to entrepreneurs about how they found a gap in the market and what they did about it.

Why We Made the Smith & Williamson Power 100

Smith & Williamson Power 100

We were chosen because of the work we do, helping entrepreneurs, small businesses and consultants write, publish and sell books that can take their business to the next level. Over the past few years, we have worked with lots of authors who realise the power of having a book and how it can grow their brand. Sometimes we work with established entrepreneurs such as Paul Fiske, author of Flatsnout Fitness, who runs a boxing coaching company. These entrepreneurs use their book to expand their reach and get media coverage. However, we also work with authors who are undergoing a career change and just starting out on the first steps of the entrepreneurial path, like Rohini Rathour. She wrote Leading Ladies:Inspiring stories of women who found their purpose with passion , which she used to set her stall out and get noticed. We work with entrepreneurs in all sectors, from music to fashion to business, and everything in between. If you look at the most successful entrepreneurs in the world, they all have bestselling books that promote their brand and share their story; now those operating at a much smaller scale can use the same tool to the same end.

As entrepreneurs ourselves, it’s really rewarding to help others grow their businesses. It’s great to be able to use our expertise and experience to help others in the entrepreneurial community to self-publish books that establish their authority, raise their profile and ultimately get them more clients. If you are interested in finding out what a book could do to grow your business, please get in touch.

4 Amazon Alternatives for Christmas Book Shopping

amazon alternatives

If you are anything like me, you want to do as much of your shopping online as possible. With Christmas fast approaching and lots of gifts to buy, shopping online and comparing prices seems like part of my everyday life.

Most people’s go-to site when looking to buy a book online is Amazon. Fair enough, they’re a juggernaut of a retailer and sell an awful lot of different products. This does give the added yule time advantage of being able to buy a cosy crime novel for Auntie Sue, a slow cooker for Nana and a PlayStation game for little Toby all in one order.


If it is JUST books you are after then you should broaden your horizons, my book-loving friends. There are some fantastic online booksellers out there that are often cheaper than Amazon and some even throw in FREE WORLDWIDE DELIVERY. This is brilliant for people like me who have friends and relatives to send gifts to in LA, New York, Bali, Hong Kong, Australia and Sweden.

(Note to self-published authors, if you are distributing your paperback/hardback through IngramSpark then your title should be available at all of the below Amazon alternatives.)



I have purchased books from here in the past because they were available for next day delivery where Amazon’s fastest option was 5-7 days. I needed the book next day! If you have left things to the last minute or need something for a tight deadline, it is always worth shopping around. They also offer free worldwide delivery!


Abe Books

Abe is an online hub for some fantastic new and used offerings from independent sellers across the globe. They stock all of the new titles you would expect, but also have some really quirky items that would make a fantastic gift such as first editions, signed copies and rarer collectibles.


This is the ideal way to support your local bookshop whilst also having access to almost any book that is currently in print. You order online, chose delivery or local bookshop collection and then nominate the local bookshop you would like to support! It’s easy and it gives you that nice, warm Christmassy feeling inside that you are helping out your local high street.


In a similar vein to Hive and Abe, Alibris is an online marketplace for independent sellers worldwide, with the addition of music and movies making it slightly more of a one-stop-shop for all your entertainment pressies this festive season. It is easy to browse by category and they have a great blog, which highlights some lesser-know titles.

Happy book shopping! If you know of any other great places to buy books online, please share in the comments box below.