Naked Conversations Is a Cracking Read

    October 23, 2005

Earlier in the week, I received a copy of the galley proofs of Naked Conversations, the business blogging book by Shel Israel and Robert Scoble, due to hit the bookstore shelves next January.

I’d actually imaged ‘galley proofs’ to be a set of individual pages or printouts complete with a guide on the symbols and text to use for making any corrections. That’s how I remember galleys from way back! But that’s not what the publisher, Wiley, is expecting.

What I got was a paperback book with a light blue cover with the phrase ‘advance uncorrected proofs’ at the top. What Wiley would like is comments. They’ve sent the proofs to a number of other bloggers, too, as well as to mainstream media and others.

So I’ve been reading the proof this weekend – about a third of the way through so far – and have to say that it’s a cracking read. The combination of Shel‘s and Robert‘s story-telling plus a pretty good editor at Wiley make for a well-presented story.

I find it interesting to read the texts I’ve been reading on the Naked Conversations blog now in their final presentation as a book. It’s funny, but strong advocate though I am for blogs and online media, there’s something about reading a physical book that gives you an experience that reading the same texts on a blog just doesn’t (or maybe that’s more to do with sitting up in bed early on a Sunday morning with the book and nice cup of tea rather than sitting at my desk staring at a PC screen!)

The only comment I want to make right now concerns two events that have happened since the two authors delivered the completed manuscript to Wiley and which are not in the text – IBM’s global employee blogging initiative and eBay’s acquisition of Skype (unless they’re mentioned later on in the book, although I have looked hard and don’t see any mention). These three companies are mentioned in various ways but these milestone events aren’t. As I believe they are very much milestones and highly relevant to the overall story the book is telling, it would be very good indeed if somehow these events can be included in the text.

I’m not yet going to comment more on the book as Shel Holtz and I will be doing a podcast review as part of the book review series in our For Immediate Release podcast.

Suffice to say for now, though, that I think Naked Conversations will be a big hit and certainly will be required reading for organizations. You can pre-order your copy now from Amazon (curiously, the Amazon UK site still has the book title as “Blog or Die,” one of the title ideas before “Naked Conversations” was decided on).

Also, Shel and Robert want your input on the proposed cover design. Author/reader engagement via the book blog continues.

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Neville Hobson is the author of the popular blog which focuses on business communication and technology.

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