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Fight Club by Chuck Palahnuik

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Writers Weekly

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Publishing Law Center

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An Interview with Geoff Shackelford

Speed isn’t generally an important aspect of golf, but speed is exactly why golf writer Geoff Shackelford choose to publish his latest book, The Future of Golf in America, with iUniverse.

Shackelford, the author of eight previous books including The Golden Age of Golf Design and Grounds for Golf, was looking to get The Future of Golf in America out quickly to address pressing issues facing the sport. The traditional publishing process wouldn’t have the book available until the winter of 2004 at the earliest. iUniverse received Shackelford’s book in late December 2003 and had it available to order in January of 2004.

IU: How did you come to iUniverse?
GS: I have a couple of books that had just gone out-of-print, so I’d always been watching to see how print-on-demand developed. I just did a lot of research and emailed a few authors. Everybody had good things to say about their experience. It accomplished what I had hoped which was to get a book out quickly and then, of course, to get a (traditional) publisher to notice it as well. I think as time goes on more and more people will get excited about the concept of (POD).

It’s sort of an eye-opening experience for someone who has done books with other publishers. How organized you all are, how smooth the whole thing went, and how quickly. That was really great because it was really key to get it out to try to take advantage of things that are going on in the world of golf that are kind of snowballing. It kind of makes me look at main-stream publishing and kind of wonder, hmm, why aren’t they this efficient and using this technology to get books out? Most of these books you turn in and if you’re lucky it comes out a year later. What do they do with it for a year? You look at that and you scratch your head.

IU: What are your impressions of the entire publishing process with iUniverse?
GS: The whole process has just been incredible. This has been my ninth book. The whole process was just incredibly great. It was just perfect in every sense. You guys have the whole process so refined. It’s just a delight to deal with iUniverse.

IU: What are your impressions of the end product?
GS: Everybody who looks at it doesn’t know that it’s print-on-demand. They think it’s a traditional trade paperback. That, in and of itself, is wonderful. The process allowed me to have a friend design a cover. In my case, we were doing a sort of homage to a famous old golf book. We were able to do something really different that maybe a traditional publisher would have thought was a little odd. It ended up working out real well. That was just another neat thing about iUniverse. I was able to do that and give the book a little bit of a special feel.

IU: What kind of things are you doing to market the book?
GS: I’m lucky in that I know a lot of people who write about golf. Basically, I just send books. I’ve hand-delivered some of them to guys and gals who are writers at tournaments. I put together a press release, and I had some endorsement quotes for the book which really helped, including one from Ben Crenshaw. You just kind of hope that they review it. Some reviews have just kind of quietly kept popping up. That’s kind of what got it started.

For more from Geoff, check out his website at

The PubGuy recommends the following iUniverse titles:

Finding True Center by Michael Gordon

A novel for those who love golf lore, America's famous courses, true friends, and the occasional wager.

Lifelong friends Nick and Easy love both golf and a serious wager. Their shared passion moves beyond the extreme when a drunken bar bet results in a far-fetched scheme: playing head-to-head in every state across America as the ultimate measure to determine the better golfer. Only their self-styled, cross-country championship quickly takes a series of unexpected turns.

Rated F by Todd Noker

In this satire about censorship gone too far, Rated F examines the insanity of attempting to make everything non-offensive for everyone.

When the resourceful owner of a struggling video rental business gives his customers what they want—R-rated movies that are edited for the family—the profits start to roll in. His life quickly spirals out of control when media attention about his successful business leads to a parade of fanatics that either want to kill him, or have him alter their personal video collections.

Devil in the House by Paul Theis

This gripping insider story of duplicity on Capitol Hill illuminates the workings of a congressional office without a congressman and a campaign without a candidate.

“This novel about the inner workings of the U.S. Congress is as timely as today’s news and as unsettling as tomorrow’s headlines—and just as intriguing.”
Robert H. Michel, former Minority Leader, U.S. House of Representatives