“You’re gonna go anyway, might as well get an education on the way.” ~Zig Ziglar on Automobile University
Since becoming a writer I have been spending my time in coffee shops writing instead of reading but I have still managed to “read” plenty of books thanks to audiobooks. Now that I am living out of the Primitive Van, I do have some extra time to read but I try to reserve most of that time for nonfiction. In order to motivate, educate, and sometimes although unintentional, entertain me, I listen to audio books while I drive. Below is the list of my most highly recommended audiobooks that I’ve accumulated after several years of listening.
Endurance by Alfred Lansing
Ernest Shackleton published a book himself of his own account of the trip but Alfred Lansing used the very journals of the men who were on the trip to write this book. Listening to this book was painful. Not because it was bad but quite the opposite. It was such a good account of what those men went through that you kind of felt their pain. The narrator was great and even did different voices and accents for the men when there was dialogue. You can read more about it here.
Natural Born Heroes by Christopher McDougall
Christopher finds a way to tell a story about incredible events while incorporating different perspectives on training and nutrition in his books. He did it in Born To Run and again in Natural Born Heroes. Like Endurance, this is not my typical nonfiction book where I am directly learning how to do something. But as a McDougall fan, I had to get this one as soon as it came out. Also like Endurance, the narrator does different voices and accents for different individuals in the book.
Writing /Publishing Books
On Writing by Stephan King
I kept hearing about this book on the Self Publishing Podcast hosted by the authors of Write, Publish, Repeat. I finally got around to downloading it and I was not disappointed. This is possibly the most entertaining audiobook I ever listened to. The first half of this book is an autobiography and I was amazed at how the narrator seemed to capture the voice inflection and emotions different people he was talking about. It was as if he was there. Turns out, he was. Stephen King himself narrates this book Even when he got down to the nuts and bolts of book writing, I still found myself laughing out loud. This is definitely one I will listen to again. I highly recommend this book even if you aren’t and aspiring author.
Write, Publish, Repeat by Sean Platt and Johnny B. Truant
This is another one that I have listened to more than once. This book is about the business of being a writer. They don’t talk about commas and adverbs here. You will learn first hand how these guys make a living as writers. This book was so effective that I went from having two published books to six after reading it. As an added bonus, you get to enjoy Simon Whistler, the narrator’s, dreamy posh British accent.
Kindle Publishing Made Stupidly Easy by Michael Rogan
This audio book is pretty much responsible for me publishing my first book, The Complete Guide to Primitive Eating. Then, afterward, responsible for it getting the exposure it has and being ranked number one on google when “primitive eating” is searched. I can’t tell you how many times I have listened to it.
The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollen
While writing my book, MIRA!, I got into a conversation with a barista about some of the research I was doing. In response, she told me I should read this book. There happened to be a copy of it there in the coffee shop and I thumbed through it. I bought the audio version immediately. No matter what your diet preference is, this book is eye-opening about the food you eat.
I owe Michael Pollen a lot for educating me enough to write a book on the subject matter myself.
Surviving Off Off-Grid by Michael Bunker
As the “Primitive” guy I thought I was pretty capable of living off-grid. I learned to and successfully harvest game over that last couple years. If the shit hits the fan, that’s a pretty useful skill, no? Well, Michael Bunker makes an eye opening point, what am I going to do with all that meat in my freezer if the power goes out. Being able to live off-grid would be cool but living off off-grid is hardcore.
One of the best things about this book was that the author wrote a book about a lifestyle he hadn’t quite adopted. He is very open about the fact that he is not quite off off-grid. This taught me that it was ok to not be the perfect example of the lifestyle you encourage. We are all works in progress.
Book Yourself Solid by Michael Port
If your service business is not completely booked or not making you the money you would like to be making, this book will get you there. I got this book for my father and he just put it on his bookshelf and hasn’t touched it. I honestly feel that sitting on that bookshelf is several hundred thousand dollars. The techniques in this book would double his revenue. It could do the same for you too and since you never had to wipe my butt, I trust you will find it easier to take advice from me.
The 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris
This book made two things very clear to me. One, I was not crazy for wanting to travel and live abroad for months at a time. Two, I needed to automate my contracting business as much as possible so I could travel. I feel like some of the material has got to be a little outdated but I know of someone who recently read it and was still impressed. He was actually disappointed that he had read it years ago. If you read this book I can promise you that there will be at least one thing in it that will change your life.
Cashflow Quadrant by Robert Kiyosaki
This one is going way back. Before the iPod, iPhone, and audiobook.com, you had to buy audiobooks on CD (and before that tapes). I owned this CD. After years without it, I downloaded the electronic version to my iPhone. This should be mandatory reading for every working human. This book talks about earning money and the four ways to do it. The biggest eye opener and take away for me was learning the being self-employed doesn’t mean you own a business. It means you own a job. This is Robert Kiyosaki’s best book! If you even intend in the slightest to “own your own business”, you need to listen to this book.
I had four more audiobooks to recommend but I see that I am over 1000 words. I’ll have to save them for another post. If any of these books interest you, you can get two of them for free by signing up for a free 30 day trial at audiobook.com. Personally, I am a silver member and get two credits a month. I’ve been doing it for years now. The best part about audiobook.com is if you don’t like your audiobook, you can get your credit back. When I learned this, I got credit for all the audiobooks I could finish like, Sex At Dawn. ZZZzzzzzzz!