This is a useful book for people who know nothing about pdf publishing, and can't be bothered searching out the info themselves. But overall, it's disappointing.
I found this guide had many useful aspects, but it was limited in some respects. Firstly, I was disappointed that it had a proofreading mistake as obvious as Monte Cook's "Forward." I think they meant "Foreword." They've also not updated the information. I downloaded this after rpgnow had raised its rates, but the guide, and the associated documents with it, still talk about them taking a 20% commission. It's now 25 or 30%. That is simply poor copy editing.
Secondly, it was overly-oriented towards the USA. Of course it was written there, so we have to expect this. Sure, half the customers of the joint are from there, too. But e-commerce is supposed to be global - and half the customers, and vendors, aren't American. The sections on US copyright and business law were completely useless to me, except of course that it made me think, "yes, I have to check that." A guide which ignores half your customers and vendors is not the best. I wouldn't like my business to halve overnight.
the "Prepress and Planning" section was good, offering food for thought. The sales data wasn't useful, since it didn't tell us about the content of the market. If 77% of the sales is d20 stuff, is that, 1% of products with 77% of the market (ie, there's not much but everyone wants it), or is that 99% of products are d20, with 77% of the market (ie, people buy it because there's not much else to buy).
"Budgets and Staff" was excellent, and should be read by any would-be rpg producer, so they know what they're getting into financially.
"Legal" and "Licensing" were, as I noted, useful mainly to US people. There was too much blabbing about d20 stuff. This should have been kept to the other published separate guide, especially for the purpose. This should have been more general. It was not enough info for those who do want to do d20 stuff, and too much info for those who don't want to do it. Better to keep it in the separate guide.
"Design and Layout" was a decent section. "Marketing" and "Sales" were quite respectable. The sales figures in particular should be considered by every would-be publisher.
The "Internet Resources" and "Survey" sections were useful, too.
In essence, the entire guide is useful to Americans who want to produce d20 products, and half of it is useful to non-Americans who don't want to produce d20 products.
The e-publisher guide I've rated as "Disappointing" because it's largely just a collation of information which is already out there. When you're thinking about publishing pdf games, it's important to research. For my part, I spent some time talking to current publishers, and thinking about the market and so on. So, most of the stuff in this guide I knew already. However, if you can't be bothered doing that research, they've put it together in this guide for you.
And that is why I say it's a useful book for people who know nothing about pdf publishing, and can't be bothered searching out the info themselves. But overall, it's disappointing.<br><br><b>QUALITY</b>: Disappointing<br><br><b>VALUE</b>: Disappointed<br>