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Before you take on any challenge - whether you are planning a trip to someplace exotic, or contemplating a career change, or whatever - there is always a step you will do first if it is available to you: You'll ask other people how they did it. You probably won't follow the same playbook as those who went before, but knowing how others approached the same challenge, and how it turned out, will narrow your choices. And that can help a lot.

After Dilbert became a big deal, people started asking how I was able to beat such long odds. Was it simply a case of hard work plus extraordinary luck, or did I have some sort of secret method?

The interesting answer is that my career unfolded according to a written strategy that I created after I graduated from college. I still have it. And on top of the strategy I have several systems designed to make it easier for luck to find me.

Last year I realized that my personal story has just the right amount of twists and setbacks to make good reading. So I turned it into a book that will come out in October on the topic of success. The title is How to Fail Almost Every Time and Still Win Big: Kind of the Story of My Life. It's a non-Dilbert book that includes humor in some chapters, but it's mostly a very different approach to the topic of success. I wouldn't expect anyone to follow my systems and get the same results, but I think it is helpful to know which methods other people have tried and how it turned out for them.

Anyway, my publisher asked me about getting blurbs for the back cover. In publishing lingo, a blurb is a recommendation or positive review of the book that appears on the back cover, as in "A fantastic read. I couldn't put it down. - Joe Blow."

My problem with collecting blurbs in the usual way is that it feels like assigning homework to strangers. A typical blurb process might involve picking some famous authors in the success field and asking my publisher to ask their publishers to ask the famous authors to 1) Read my book, and 2) Write glowing reviews. The whole process feels wrong.

This is where you come in.

My publisher has agreed to print blurbs from you, my blog readers, knowing that none of you have read the actual book. What's in it for you is that you might see your name on the back cover of the book.

The trick is to write your review in a way that addresses my general writing/thinking qualities as seen on this blog. You won't be reviewing the book so much as reviewing me as a writer. Keep your reviews to a few sentences at most, and don't be so overboard that it looks disingenuous. The trick is to say something positive that isn't over the top. And don't pretend you actually read the book.

I'll select several winners from what I see in the comments and stick them on the book.

Who's in?

 
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Jun 5, 2013
If learning how to be successful is a byproduct of failing then taking life advice from a cartoonist is what every moist squishy robot should be doing.
-Christopher DeCleene
 
 
-2 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
Adams is a master at conveying complex psychological concepts with an approachable ease.
-John Cope
 
 
0 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
What a great way to fish for compliments. Ego boost 100.

Scott Adam writes one of the few blogs I check every day. Good writing, humor, and radically unexpected ideas are a potent combination. Even when he is dead wrong he is quite interesting. What more could you ask for?
 
 
Jun 5, 2013
Rest assured that when you delve into Scott Adams' writings you will have your horizons expanded. You will be challenged, angered, or dazzled by ways of looking at the world that had never before occurred to you. You will leave thinking of him as a (minor) god or as a twisted misogynist (or worse)- depending on how healthy your sense of humor and wonder are.
 
 
Jun 5, 2013
Not one of Scott's best works but he lays the foundation for the much anticipated sequel - <insert name of sequel - possibly co-authored by your's truly>. A must read for anyone wanting to be the next Seth Rogen character.
 
 
-1 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
I've never read this book, but I read a lot of his cartoons. Both probably apply equally.
-Dave Freeman
 
 
-1 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
You know Scott Adams as the Dilbert cartoonist. I also know Scott Adams as a Blog writer extraordinaire whose posts are thought provoking, funny, self-deprecating, and logical -- and almost always in the same post! Read this book and see for yourself!
-Dan Bergeron
 
 
Jun 5, 2013
Scott Adams has a unique way of looking at things. He's not afraid to put crazy ideas out there, but there's usually enough of a kernel of a good idea there, or at least defining the problem in a new yet accurate way, that he's well worth listening to.
- Ray Kremer
 
 
+10 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
I love Scott's ability to blend insightful concepts with outrageous humor.
That is my completely unbiased opinion.

--Dave Adams
 
 
Jun 5, 2013
"This blurb compels you to read this book; A little mind trick I learned from Scott Adams."
 
 
-2 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
I read Adams' blog almost every day and I almost always get my money's worth. At least the blog is free.

I visit Adams' blog often and almost always leave completely satisfied.

A fan of Dilbert, a fan of Adams' thought-provoking blog, and a fan of torrenting ebooks, I can't wait to read about Adams' strategic yet meandering path to success.

Scott Adams' blog entries have entertained and intrigued for years, and I expect the story of how he achieved success with Dilbert to be a fascinating look inside his journey. According to Adams, free will doesn't exist so he had no choice but to write the book, so I'll look for how he handles that in the prologue.
 
 
-1 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
Blurb:
Scott Adams is not a self-help guru, but he generously shares his stories to encourage others to step up.
 
 
Jun 5, 2013
If you were looking for a writer with a brilliant and bulletproof path to success you're looking at the wrong book. But if you want to figure out how to succeed despite writing about office tomfoolery, moist robots, and delusions of a mechanized future, then this writer is for you! Scott Adams' unconventional methods have led to unlikely achievement. Discover how failure leads to success from one of the most compelling and interesting writers of our age.

-Jeff Eganhouse
 
 
Jun 5, 2013
Adams eloquent delivery is very refreshing. Who else can deliver serious topics resulting in giggle fits and yet retain valuable information?
-Joe Mamma
 
 
+26 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
I once emailed Scott Adams for advice on opening a restaurant, his reply paraphrased, "don't do it, it's a stupid idea." I followed that advice and couldn't be happier. I can only assume that this book is filled with similarly intelligent and thoughtful advice. Thanks Scott.
 
 
+8 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
The ideas in this book almost certainly won't work. But they will probably get you to think up your own better ideas that will. If you like coming up with your own path to success, you should read this book and then do something totally different.

Ned Keitt-Pride
 
 
-1 Rank Up Rank Down
Jun 5, 2013
Adams' unique blend of hypnotism and humor guarantees that this book will suck way less than every other book on the subject.
 
 
Jun 5, 2013
Humor:

"You will never be a big success story, but at least you can read about what you should have done if you wanted it badly enough."

Serious:

"A few people become the best in their field, and a few of those best seem to transcend that field and make their minds present and felt in other disciplines and spheres of thought. I think David Letterman described this strain as the sort with "no off switch." Scott Adams, for better or worse, doesn't turn off. And I, for one, am thankful."
 
 
Jun 5, 2013
From the moment I picked up your book until I laid it down, I was convulsed with laughter. Some day I intend reading it - Groucho Marx
 
 
Jun 5, 2013
If a million monkeys on typewriters wrote the works of Shakespeare, Scott Adams must have at least half a million working for him.
 
 
 
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