Yes, this is a book blog … with a twist (and 5 reasons to follow!)

If you’re an indie author, book reviewer, or just someone who enjoys discovering new books (uh, don’t we all?), then you are going to dig this new blog.

But something very unusual lies at the heart of it.

That’s right: this blog is an entire community built around … an Excel spreadsheet.

I know. I can see you scratching your head so hard right now, your nails are digging into your scalp trying to figure out what I’m talking about. Let me explain.

A spicier reading life awaits you when you follow our blog. (Victoria Bowers)
The spreadsheet in question is called Tim’s Discovery List, and it’s full of terrific self-published books for you to discover—along with reviews about those books.

But the most important thing is this community we are building—right here on this blog—where you can help us add books and reviews to the Discovery List (along with what I call “Love Notes,” which are small bits of praise for books you like).

So follow this blog today … and help us build the List! Brighten up your days, spice up your reading life, and enjoy a few chuckles along the way.

Here are 5 ways following this blog will improve your life:

1. Discover excellent self-published books. The 4- and 5-star reviews are already rolling in, and we’ve got some clear winners on the List. But that doesn’t mean that the others aren’t ready to soar to the top of the List, too, once they get noticed—so after you download the Discovery List, be sure to scroll down and check out some of the sleepers.

Who knows, you might even stumble upon the next Andy Weir (The Martian) or E.L. James (Fifty Shades of Grey)—two successful authors who self-published—and help launch them to fame!

(On a related note, the self-help book I wrote about getting older, Fifty: Shades of Grey, came out around the same time. It sold quite a few copies, although I’m still not 100% sure that any of those people actually meant to order it.)

“Here are your books. Been hanging out in the giveaway section of Tim’s Discovery List again?” (Artem Podrez)
2. Read to your heart’s content. As a blog follower, you’ll be the first to know about … drumroll, please … book giveaways! We’ll be having a lot of them, so you may have to pace yourself. Or not. Tell you what, just post a review or submit a Love Note after you shovel your way out from that pile of books you’re buried under.

3. Become an author yourself. When you follow this blog, I’ll let you know about the many opportunities for firing up that laptop and writing a novel of your own. Best of all, self-publishing is now much easier, more fun, and more affordable than ever, thanks to ChapterBuzz, our reading and writing platform.

And unlike in the early days of self-publishing, you won’t have to deal with that weird guy in the corner who turns that squeaky hand crank to lower the wooden platform you’re lying on down into the—wait, I may be thinking of something else here. Anyway, moving on …

4. Dazzle us with your reviews. Do you have a blog where you post book reviews? Or do you dream of starting a review blog? Or at the very least, have you wanted to try your hand at writing book reviews? What about writing book reviews on your hand? Any of this sound good?

If so, you’re in the right place! If you end up writing any reviews of self-published books (and post them on your blog), we welcome those reviews on the Discovery List. We’ll also be giving awards to our very best reviewers.

And finally, the best reason of all to follow our blog …

5. Be a part of something big. In addition to discovering books, I hope you’ll contribute by sharing a book you found recently, writing a review, or typing out a few Love Notes about some of the books on the list.

Think of it as your gift to your descendants, for here’s my humble prediction: The Discovery List will live on, and continue to delight readers for centuries to come. Future generations will look to the heavens and thank their lucky starks that you helped them find good bonks to read (300 years from now, some words will be spelled slightly differently).

But here in the present, I hope you’ll join us on this journey of discovery.

It all starts right here, right now—so follow away!

And together, we’ll make it our goal to help each other find the very best self-published bonks—er, books—that we can.


I’m Timothy Pike, copy editor and self-publishing coach, and I’ve been in the book business since 2014. I created the writing and reading community ChapterBuzz to help authors publish their books affordably, and founded Books & Buzz Magazine to showcase prominent authors, reviewers, and books. I invite you to join our private book society on Facebook!

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