Our Amazon Problem

FeuerbachAmazonenSchlacht copy

For years now this blog has earned a small income from Amazon sales–not much, just enough to cover our hosting fees and pay our webmaster.

Meanwhile, Amazon has grown to proportions that would make a 19th century robber baron blush. The New York Times reported this month on Amazon’s poor treatment of white collar employees while BBC’s Panorama showed the hellish conditions at the bottom of the Amazon pyramid. For years Amazon avoided paying local sales taxes, gaining a discounting advantage that put small local bookstores, unable to compete, out of business. I could go on. If you’d like to know more read this roundup of Amazon’s sins in Salon.

And yet, I suspect, few of us (including myself) have had the moral courage to delete our Amazon accounts like Rob Hoskins, founder of the Transition movement, did and blogged about it recently (Thanks FR for tipping me off to Hoskins’ post). Those Amazon discounts are just too tempting and their comprehensive selection of goods too convenient to bypass. And for bloggers, such as ourselves, those associate referral fees provide one of the few viable sources of funding for our efforts. Even less appealing than loss of income is clean-up work: our site is now riddled with links to Amazon which, if we want to divest from Amazon, we will have to remove one by one, by combing through more than 2000 posts.

We’ve considered using other advertising models, but found those to be even more potentially offensive. Face it, most of consumer culture is offensive.  Should we push factory-made clothing? Toxic electronics? Cars? Credit? Click bait? We’d like to have small businesses as sponsors, but finding them, negotiating with them and wrangling their ads is a part-time job that neither of us wanted to take on.

Regarding alternatives to the Amazon model, there was a period when Amazon dumped all associates in California after the state went after them for not paying sales taxes. During this time, I tried using Portland-based bookstore Powell’s associate program, but it proved unpopular with our readers. There were maybe one or two orders total in the six months I went with Powell’s.

I believe it to be unethical to write for free. It’s not fair to our fellow authors and I don’t want to be part of the race to the bottom that’s destroyed the music business and is currently destroying publishing and journalism. That’s why I feel morally compelled to find a funding model that keeps Root Simple free while providing us with a modest income.

I’ve long been an admirer of the folks at the Idler in the UK. Like us, they teach classes. But they also self-publish beautiful books. What if we were to do the same and sell them through our website rather than through Amazon? Marshall McCluhan noted that when a new technology takes over, what it replaces becomes an art form. I have a sense that, with so much time devoted to staring at screens, people will increasingly want the peace and focus that comes with holding a beautiful book in one’s hands.

This is where you can help by answering, in the comments, a few questions I have:

If we were to start self-publishing short how-to books would you want them in an inexpensive ebook format or would you be willing to pay more for a physical book?

Do you think we should cut all ties with Amazon?

How many of you have gone as far as Hopkins and have deleted your personal Amazon account?

Would you be willing to support us through donations?

How about online classes? What subjects would you want us to tackle?

Leave a comment


  1. Thank you for the post. I find myself in similar situations often, and am similarly torn. Right now it’s the computer that needs expensive repairs, and a dominant computer company that is making the warranty such a headache that buying a new one is clearly the easy option. It’s making me think Linux, and about what power we do have in the face of the oligarchs.

    I’m also a small business owner and would love to help sponsor you guys. Get in touch!

  2. Personally, I’m always willing to pay a bit more for a physical book. I really don’t like having to fire up a gizmo to read, nor do I like having light always glowing up at my face when doing so. There is definitely more peace in physical books for a lot of reasons, and there are studies showing that information from IRL books etc sticks better 😉

    As far as Amazon. Ugh, yes, ’tis a very tough beast to wrangle. DH is now back in school, and their textbook rentals are extremely helpful. I’ve also noticed the explosion of thrift stores etc. that are now able to earn money from selling their used books on Amazon. IIRC, Goodwill had pretty much stopped taking many books for a long while, but now that they have a means to sell them more readily, they take them all, and even have those “bookshop” donation spots. If I do buy books from Amazon, I try to buy used and from as local a source as possible. Used books may save trees, but shipping them all over the planet is also eco-pricey. Le Sigh.

    • If I’m on Amazon in the first place (more often than I’d like to admit) and if it’s a book I can buy used (almost always), I look to see if a Goodwill or similarly-focused entity has a copy for sale, up to a certain percentage over the cheapest price I can find on that site.

  3. I want to defend both Amazon and ebooks (but not Amazon ebooks). I think the mom-and-pop local store model for retail just doesn’t work as well for consumers as an internet retailer with giant warehouses. I once wanted to buy a window fan in August, and went to local stores which were all sold out. I ordered from Amazon and got one the next day.

    For the ebooks, I do put some effort into using the night mode on my reader when I’m reading in bed, but I just find being able to adjust the size of the print for my aging eyes is so much easier than putting on reading glasses, and adjusting the screen brightness is easier than using a reading lamp.

    I sympathize with the problems of getting paid for a website; I haven’t found either Google or Amazon works for me, but selling books from lulu.com does. I’m thinking of cutting them out as a middleman and doing my own printing and shipping. I wish you luck in your efforts.

    • Boy, I’m with you on the fan issue.

      It used to be – way back when I was small – that retailers sold seasonal goods during the appropriate season. No longer. The day after New Year’s they trot out the barbeque grills and bathing suits and summer stuff’s been gone from the shelves for a long time now. For these things, I reluctantly go online; if I can get what I need in the store for cash, that’s always my first choice.

  4. I can’t tell you what to do, and will respect you guys and read the blog either way in regards to Amazon, but I am one who, if I want to purchase a book, will happily pay more for a physical book. I’m just not a huge fan of ebooks. I appreciate having internet references, but I want physical books for my general go-to reference materials (and definitely for fiction reading, but that’s off-topic). Good for you guys for trying to find a better solution than Amazon though, even if it doesn’t work out!

  5. I am a huge fan of this blog and your podcast and regularly reference your two books. For me, the physical book is crucial. I’m willing to buy it from a non-Amazon source–I too was disheartened by the recent news about working conditions at Amazon–but I hope you do continue to publish print versions.

  6. I would pay for print books and/or donate. I love your blog (and would sign up for classes, you bet!). I won’t sniff at you if you stay with Amazon, but I do think I will close my account. Late Capitalism & Dying Empire is a mighty depressing epoch in which to find oneself, but as I tell my hand-wringing friends who say, “But what can we DO?”, if we have come to mean nothing but “consumer”, better leverage it. Trace every dime you can and if you don’t like the world it’s building, put it back in your pocket.

  7. I like hard copy books and online classes. I think classes in urban gardening and living simply would be great classes to take.

  8. I’m in Quebec, Canada; Amazon.ca sucks and Amazon.com has always given me shitty service, when it even can/does. I’ve given them another chance recently and they failed me for the last time (and that was before the fecal matter hit the media fan about how they treat their employees!). My account has not yet been deleted but it will remain forever unused. (FYI for books I used Chapters Indigo.)

    I would pay for your paper books; I spend my days in front of a screen and when I want to actually read and learn, I print or buy in print.

    I’m in a tight spot right now for donations and I prefer reading a book to taking a class, online or not.

    I want to thank you for the way you put things when you say it’s “unethical to write for free”. I’m in the midst of reflection upon my own online writing and its free nature is a major part of my recent discontent/loss of mojo. I like how you put it: it will fuel the next step in my reflexion.

    Clearly, we need a better model. Not just for writers – as consumers/readers too.

  9. Couple of things. First, I think you meant Amazon’s practice against white “collar” employees and not white color employees. Nitpicky, yes, but before you know it you’ll have the media at your door asking you to prove Amazon is racist.

    Second, publishing is a great idea. I’d recommend visiting Lost Art Press. Chris Schwarz has done that with woodworking. Check them out.

    • Ouch! Holy auto-correction! That’s embarrassing. We’ll fix that right away. Thanks for pointing it out.

      And thanks for the ref to Lost Art.

  10. Regardless of what you do with Amazon, I’ll remain a loyal blog reader. I’m keeping my Amazon account, mainly because we’re low income, and my local bookstore, while awesome, is so expensive. I actually rarely buy books anyway as we have a great library a couple of blocks away.

  11. I much prefer books on paper; I gave up on the Kindle long ago. Besides, I may not have a wireless connection when the zombie apocalypse happens.

  12. I’ve been supporting some folks on Patreon and Gum Road for a little while and really enjoying it, would be happy to do so for Root Simple as well.

  13. I think you should pick your battles.

    Yes, Amazon is bad, but there are ten thousand more pressing and urgent issues, from famine to slavery, you are also not engaging with.

    The fact is, we can only do so much—and you two are already doing a lot.

    It takes a great deal of courage and strength to stand outside our culture, to critique it, and to behave in ways that are unusual, unsupported or discouraged. You do that every day, and you do it in ways that most people are not doing.

    So let some famous authors battle with Amazon. You are breaking a trail of greater local subsistence. That will be critical for all of us in not too long a time. And yes, you deserve to get paid for your work. Let others battle Amazon.

  14. I’d look into Gum Road too. I follow Tee Morris and Pip Ballantine and their Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences books. They also talk a lot about writing for a living, and how people were always asking them which e-book site gave them the most money.

    Now they use Gum Road, and I LOVE being able to give them more of my money. (They are also evil, evil people that spotlight other authors/artists in ways that make you want to run to Kickstarter and give those people money too…)

  15. I would be happy to purchase physical books, not e books from your site. I was not aware of the sins of Amazon, but will definitely consider it now. The idea of cancelling my membership does cause me a bit of panic. Online classes would be cool although I can’t currently think of a topic. I would rather pay for things on an “as needed” basis vs donation. My budget is stretched & if I need to find new sources for all the things I get cheaply on Amazon it’s going to be even thinner! Let your conscience guide you as you decide your stance as it relates to Amazon, that’s what I intend to do as well.

  16. I don’t pay for ebooks. I don’t really read them, I don’t want to have to buy a device for them and I like the physicality of the book.

    I do donate to another site, a very modest amount, so modest that I couldn’t refuse. Though he’s been MIA for a few weeks and I am now considering ending that donation. I’d happily make you the beneficiary.

  17. I love your posts, and your podcast, but I haven’t bought your books, probably mostly because I have so many DIY and gardening books already. And the library has thousands more. I use Amazon as a way to find obscure things that are not available at the library, or once I’ve read it at the library, and can’t find it in a regular bookstore, to get out-of-print things. I definitely also use Amazon to buy mass-produced things (after reading their reviews) that I could only buy locally from a large chain. Buying an OXO food mill from the local Bed, Bath, & Beyond is not really supporting local businesses in any significant way, and is probably just a waste of gas and time. I also use Amazon to keep track of my personal wish lists, which are huge. I mostly don’t buy those things, but I want to keep track of them, and the data on Amazon is really helpful.
    That said, I prefer real books. I have sometimes bought the ebook if I just really had to read it right now (helloooo Game of Thrones!) or if I’ve given a particular book away so many times that I don’t trust myself to hang on to a copy for myself.
    In your case, I would probably be most interested chapbooks, small books that develop something not done somewhere else in my local library.
    Thanks so much for all you do!

  18. I’m not sure you need to worry so much about how Amazon is treating its white collar workers. My impression is, they’re mostly middle and upper management, so it’s not like they are single moms working for Walmart, who don’t have any options — they self-selected. As James Poulos pointed out over on The Week, these guys are all Type A personalities, and if they weren’t being Type A’s at Amazon, they’d be doing it somewhere else.

  19. I’m not opposed to buying physical or e-books, but I’m not sure what the topics could be that you haven’t already written about and for which I need a book’s worth of additional information. I tend to buy e-magazines more than e-books, and usually do that when I love the photography or for patterns or recipes. I like the Craftsy platform for classes because you can view them again and again. You can also ask questions of the instructors. I would definitely consider a bread class though a platform like that if you did one because I’m never sure what my sourdough starter should look like and just end up throwing it out. Honestly, there aren’t that many blogs that I would just donate to.

  20. I would vastly prefer an ebook. I never buy paper books anymore unless it’s an art book.

    Please do not sever ties with Amazon. You’re getting extremely wrong information. There is a war against Amazon right now, led by the huge publishing companies who want to continue being the only publishing game in town, so they can keep on mistreating and underpaying their authors. Amazon is changing all that…finally authors have a chance at a real living in writing. If you drop Amazon…well, quite frankly, I’ll be forced to drop you. I can’t support anyone who promotes such rubbish.

    • I cannot speak to the recent charges leveled against Amazon for its treatment of its white-collar workers, but the way it treats warehouse employees has been really dreadful and well investigated. There is a series of articles in the Allentown, PA ‘Morning Call’ based on the paper’s own investigations at the Amazon warehouse near Allentown.

      At the time of the articles, we lived about 45 minutes north of Allentown and knew people who worked at the fulfillment center; according to them, the Morning Call was right on the money. It is not O.K. to hire an ambulance company to wait in your parking lot for employees who pass out from the heat instead of providing proper ventilation on hot days; it is also not O.K. to force employees to stand outside on bitterly cold days for extended periods of time. The list goes on.

      You can read the articles for yourself:

  21. *I’d pay for either format of book. although the e-book, could that be a pdf too? i don’t have a kindle or anything like that…

    *Amazon: i can’t make that call. it’d be easy for me to say to drop amazon and be 100% righteous but it aint me losing that income! as i think Ruben above commented, you two are doing tons as it is and very, very few of us are perfect…

    *definitely would support with donations. what about a PBS style model with gifts for pledges at different levels?

    *would consider taking an on-line course too. how about bread baking?

  22. I’ll be honest. If I can’t read it on my Kindle or Kindle App for my phone or is a serious reference book in my field, I won’t buy it. I live in a small space and my e-book collection would clutter up a serious amount of my square-footage, no matter how pretty the books. I currently have 171 e-books (mostly non-fiction) and 27 pages of audiobooks (hundreds of works of fiction).

    The biggest reason, though, that I use e-books is that I actively use the books on my phone as a reference while out and about. When I put in my dripline system, I wandered around the hardware store looking at the diagram from Making It on the phone. I purchase smaller e-books as well. For example, before I tried making my first country wine, I bought the Storey’s Guide on Amazon for $3. The book was first published when I was born in 1981. Now, I can reference it on my phone. I think that is pretty great. The various Kindle Apps and e-book publications are far from perfect, but they simply get used more than my hardcover books.

    The *only* thing that is going to make Amazon changes its ways is a federal anti-trust lawsuit by The Man. Hurting yourself by cutting off your income isn’t going to make a difference other than in your heart. So, you can do good, spread the word, and get paid for your good work and continue to influence people, or you can fight the behemoth to no effective end.

    I know a lot of people say they would pay for content, but they don’t. I actually do. When I follow a blog like this regularly, I make sure to pay for whatever content is available. I would definitely pay for small-batch e-books.

  23. I like eBooks for narratives, but much prefer paper books for reference purposes. I’m also hesitant to pay for electronic content as I’ve had my e library wiped out a few times by computer crashes, moving to another country and finding that the licenses are no good, etc. What I really like is a free eBook version included with hard copy!

    No judgment either way on whether or not you work with Amazon. No one else is really offering the service they provide for you, and as a reader, I’d rather have you writing more than spending half your time chasing ad revenue.

  24. Your post made me think of Amanda Palmer’s TED talk entitled “The Art of Asking” (www.ted.com/talks/amanda_palmer_the_art_of_asking?language=en). Thank you for asking.

    I usually prefer physical books over ebooks, and usually borrow from the public library rather than buying–unless it’s a book like “The Urban Homestead” that I’ll want to refer to often.

    I don’t know if you should cut all ties with Amazon, but what about finding five to ten good local bookstores across the country that could set up some sort of reciprocal relationship?

    I don’t have an Amazon account. When I must order online, I use Chapters Indigo, being a Canadian.

    “Would you be willing to support us through donations?” YES! I don’t have tons of cash, but I could take you out for a virtual coffee once in a while. Unfortunately I would miss out on the tax benefits of donating, since I’m not in the States, but you provide so much stimulating and fun content, I wouldn’t mind paying for it.

    “How about online classes?” Hmm, perhaps. Via Skype? Or video with text discussion? I’d have to think more about subjects that I’d like you to tackle.

  25. I’m in favor of buying local but–since you publish online–your audience is global. If your sponsors were local to you, they might not be local to your readers. (As an extreme example, I live in Portugal!)

    Also, I think Amazon does provide some valuable services, many of which have been mentioned above, even if they do have areas where they need to improve.

    On the other hand, I think online classes might be a viable idea. There’s plenty of good written information online, and even video tutorials, but something more interactive might really fill a niche. If you could then make the classes available as videos as well, that might be an additional source of income…

    Just my two (euro) cents 🙂

  26. The book market is changing so it won’t matter how Amazon and publishers threaten each other. A printed book will always have a place, but it won’t be what we carry around and use every day. As far as reference material or learning a new skill, I find I go straight to youtube because I learn better if I see how to do something, rather than simply read instructions.
    I’ve learned quite a bit reading your blog and I would certainly buy subject-specific ebooks from you, even things in PDF. I would also subscribe to your podcast.

  27. I vastly prefer eBooks. I have about four THOUSAND eBooks (when I got my first reader, I browsed Project Gutenberg for two weeks…) I buy lots of eBooks from small authors who don’t have physical copies of books. Beyond that, I can find eBooks of Victorian/WWI-era knitting patterns, how cool is that?

    Beyond space issues, I have issues with my hands and cannot hold a paperback book open. My reader doesn’t require me to hold it open. Also, it’s good to jack the font up to the “OMG! I’m blind” setting.

    It would be cool if you could do something like digital “pamphlets” of information on certain topics. Those would be perfect to buy to have lots of info in one spot.

  28. Right now I prefer ebooks because I live in my van. I would be Glad to subscribe to Root Simple at a rate of $10 per month. I do this for another blogger and really like the direct support model.

  29. I agree with a lot of the issues about Amazon, but at the same time, they are obviously providing a service that resonates with a lot of people. If we use our social-media armaments, perhaps we can shame Amazon into improving conditions, instead of bailing on it and leaving its employees at the mercy of other customers who simply don’t , or can’t, care. For many, getting necessary items at the lowest price possible, and delivered, is a necessity, not a choice.

    Since the Homegrowns are trying hard to make a living with this blog, I for one have no problem with their presence on Amazon. If it opens them up to a wider market, and exposes them to people who are not yet fans, then the site is doing its job. If you only market to the already-enlightened, who are you really helping?

    I use Amazon for things that local retailers refuse to stock on a regular basis; I will shop locally for anything that is available. If I have to resort to the Amazon, I use the “Smile” version of it, and my favorite charity gets a cut.

    I do buy ebooks, (or rent them) because I don’t want to burden my home with more and more paper. I use Amazon to search for used versions of books I feel the need to handle. My hope is that the authors are getting a cut of the e-versions, and by buying used, I’m fulfilling my desire to reduce/reuse/recycle as opposed to enjoying that new book smell.

    However, when the next Homegrown publication comes out, I will buy a new copy of that!

    • p.s. we need to remember that Amazon is far more than books. They sell goods of all sorts, many of which are shipped directly from independent, small businesses. They have created a marketing device that unifies many independent retailers. There may be problems with the execution in some cases, but their overall business model obviously works, or they wouldn’t be where they are today.

      We should focus our efforts on encouraging them to improve where they are failing, not simply refute their entire operation.

    • Hear Hear! Well said. I don’t think ‘dumping’ Amazon is going to do any good. Retail is a bitch no matter who you work for. It is all about profit and customer satisfaction, not worker satisfaction or concern. In retail, if you don’t want to do the work they will find another more desperate sucker to do it. Sorry to throw cold water on it all. I think we can only make our changes in our own immediate world before we try and take on the Bigger Guys. Work local and voice globally. And yes, do some online classes and local workshops to make money. When the student is ready the teacher appears. As a teacher, stay available. Your blog reaches the world. Thank you.

  30. I usually use my reader for fiction/narratives and physical books for nonfiction/reference (anything that I need to flip through). I would support either format for you guys, though I would prefer physical books since I assume you won’t be publishing any suspenseful narratives about the chickens (which I totally would read). Another commenter mentioned lulu.com and I’ve looked into them before. They seem like a good option for self-publishing.

    Patreon, as commented above, would be a great site for you guys to look into for funding.

    Online classes would be awesome! Have you guys also considered getting back into the YouTube game? Your Sourdough Starter video was so well produced and it would be great to see more content like that. There is so much great content on YouTube right now (especially educational videos: SciShow, CrashCourse, The Art Assignment, thebrainscoop, PBS Idea Channel, MikeandLauren, MTV Braless, The Good Stuff, just to name a few) and I would definitely watch whatever you guys produce. Unfortunately with YouTube’s model you do have to be in it for the long haul to see any monetary gain, though there are plenty of YouTubers going the Patreon route to get around that.

    I don’t know that I fully support you guys getting off of Amazon. There are plenty of people that, if they can’t source a book from Amazon, probably won’t buy it. I would hate it if people couldn’t be exposed to your ideas and projects because the book wasn’t as accessible. I don’t know, its a tricky subject.

  31. It depends on the type of book. I like stories, novels etc in ebook form but photo books and reference books I like in print because you can flick through and have a quality picture. The speed and ease of Amazon is appealing but ethics behind it is offputting.

  32. My husband is working on a project about independent bookstores, and though the eyes of the booksellers I have definitely gotten a new perspective on the dark side of Amazon. One of their points is that if there are only one or two big players deciding what gets seen, what is on the front page, etc., then those players are in effect controlling what ideas most people are exposed to.

    Personally, I’ve stopped all buying from Amazon. Although there’s not an indie bookstore in my town, I picked one I love in a nearby town, and if I need to order a book, I do it through them. It’s just as fast and the service is better. I don’t get the deep discounts, but I believe wholeheartedly in what another commenter said, that every dollar you spend is a vote for the kind of world you want to live in. I’d much rather buy less overall, and save for quality things that matter. I’ve also concluded that any time a corporation is big enough to have shareholders, they’re probably looking out for their profits more than what larger impacts their practices may have on society, the environment, etc. I’d rather buy your book from you, or from a small bookstore I also feel good about supporting. I think IndieBound also has an affiliate program where buyers can choose a store to order from?

  33. Patreon. I get immense value from the content you provide, and would love to be able to remunerate you for every podcast/blogpost. They keep track of your content and my pledge and make it easy for us both, without the alternative incentives from Amazon.

  34. I have already bought each of your physical books. In fact, I’ve bought multiple copies of each since I gave them as gifts. I will continue to buy your physical books.

    For the record I bought some at a “real” book store and others at the pop up book store at the Heirloom Seed Festival – and got signed copies. Happy.

    If I lived in LA I’d pay to attend classes. That would be great.

    As for the Amazon controversy… Meh. People become temporarily obsessed with the consumer culture minutiae du jour. “Should I boycott Curves, Chick-Fil-A, and British Petroleum all at the same time or just put them on a rotation? Does anyone really believe this stuff makes any difference? Big picture people. Big picture.

  35. Thank you both so much for the inspiring blog! I have been a great fan for a few years now but this is the first time I am leaving a comment.

    I prefer physical books to ebooks. The public library in my hometown has both of your books, and I recently borrowed them to see what I had been missing. I am very selective about what I buy – especially after Kondo-ing my bookshelves this past winter – and like to find out what is inside before taking the plunge. Am still mulling over buying one of them in the future – the content is definitely bookshelf-worthy.

    Amazon seems to be a necessary evil and is definitely symptomatic of a structural problem. I don’t have an account, but I’m still a part of the system because on the rare occasions that I want a book I can only find that way, a family member orders it for me via her account. You have to choose your battles wisely. I would not think less of you for staying with Amazon to ensure the blog generates money. However, if you make the break, that would just be one more reason to admire what both of you do. I wish you luck in making this decision!

    I rarely make donations, but I enjoy what I read here so much that I would be willing to make one.

    As for online classes, I would consider taking one on basic sewing skills/sewing without a sewing machine/sewing simple adult clothing.

  36. I like ebooks for reference when I’m in the field because it’s easier than carrying six bird, plant, whatever ID books. For regular reading, I want the book in hand.

    You might be surprised at how much you could make with sponsorships. I’m using Passionfruit software. It’s simple on both ends. I follow a blogger who makes a full time living this way.

  37. Hi! I own both of your books and love them! I think you should keep your Amazon links and let people choose where they want to buy. I use Amazon a lot for their search features and use their Wish list to keep track of books I want to take out of the library or buy. I am not a fan of eBooks and only buy a book if it’s a good reference book (like both of yours are). Why not look into how-to videos or interviews? I love learning things by seeing them done. Is there a way to make money from YouTube? BTW, love your site!

  38. I use Amazon as a last resort, and that’s pretty seldom since I live in a major city. I’d be more inclined to buy a physical book, and I own both The Urban Homestead and Making It. I appreciate the cogent and clear how-to guides in each. The aesthetic of these books also appeal to me. I would be more inclined to buy another how-to type of book (maybe related to hardscaping projects or ways to get off grid in a city) than something more thoughtstyle-y. I would also join some kind of subscription/sustaining member type thing if it were modestly priced. I hear good things about Patreon but haven’t used it myself.

  39. If it is a one time read, I am ok with ebooks or audio books. Audiobooks in particular, as I listen to them while I work, and a friend of mine oplistens to them on her two hour commutes from arcadia to long beach on the metro. But if it is a book I would refer to constantly, I much prefer a paperback. I can’t imagine having any of my cookbooks or gardening books in eformat. I also recommend patreon and gumroad, or just having your own shop say qith square. This would require a lot of self promotion though.

    • Oh also, have you considered publishing or selling through chelsea green? Their books and audience are right up your alley!

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