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I am Mongoose, and so can you! $29.95 $23.96
Average Rating:4.3 / 5
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I am Mongoose, and so can you!
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I am Mongoose, and so can you!
Publisher: Mongoose
by Robert S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/18/2014 10:29:27
The book really needs to be updated. It's nearly a decade old now and the information of pdf vs hardcopy has to be out of date. Still it is a good read even if the second half comes off as an advertisement for Mongoose's Flaming Cobra publication partnership.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
I am Mongoose, and so can you!
Publisher: Mongoose
by John W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/23/2011 12:57:37
Simply put, if you are considering entering the gaming business, you need this book. The book is a detailed description of how you can enter the gaming business, the amount of work you will need to be willing to perform, and just how successful you can be.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but if you are entering this business and you don't buy this book, that's the first mistake you'll make in the gaming industry. This book is that good and that indispensable.

Factor it into your start-up budget. You won't regret it.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
I am Mongoose, and so can you!
Publisher: Mongoose
by Michelle V. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/27/2010 05:22:13
This ebook is pretty good, but I don't think it's as spectacular as other reviewers, and I'm finding myself disapointed that I paid $30 for it.

I found that it left many of my questions unanswered. I am interested more in having another company publish something, and while they addressed this by mentioning their indie publishing company, there was very little about the actual process, as well as that part just seemed like an advertisement for their own company more than a guide. There wasn't any information about where else you could submit books or the process of that. Is self-publishing the only way?

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
I am Mongoose, and so can you!
Publisher: Mongoose
by Justin M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/02/2009 07:29:56
To be honest, when I purchased, "I am Mongoose, and so can you!" I was highly skeptical about it’s relevance and accuracy. I read over it a few times, and was impressed with the quality of information, but still wasn't sure it was going to be of any use in starting up my new game-design company. However, as the process of getting the business up and running continued, time and time again, I was amazed to find that this book was spot on. If you are even pondering starting up your own RPG company, I highly recommend you buy this product! It's worth it’s weight in gold -- if it were to be printed out on gold embossed paper that is.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
I am Mongoose, and so can you!
Publisher: Mongoose
by Dale M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/14/2009 11:32:18
I cannot rave about this product enough! If you're serious about making a living in the RPG industry, get this. Period.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
I am Mongoose, and so can you!
Publisher: Mongoose
by Nathan C. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 03/30/2009 09:53:58
I am Mongoose and so can you is not an insult spouted by a delusional man, but the most important book released for anyone interested in becoming apart of the Role Playing Game business. Written by Matthew Sprange of Mongoose Publishing, I am Mongoose is a straightforward business guide for the RPG Entrepreneur.

The 37-page book discusses how an individual can break into the RPG business- either working for a company or themselves. Written in an elegant, simplistic style, Sprange writes the book as if he is having a frank conversation with a son before he goes into the family business. The writing feels conversational, allowing the reader to easily take in the wealth of knowledge he is receiving. There are no frills to distract the reader, instead the reader is distributed a detailed set of information on building a business plan, expectations and goals. Starting off with an synopsis of salaries, Sprange rides the natural flow of his thoughts. The book proceeds into discussing typical RPG positions, book publishing costs and marketing ideas. There is also an inspirational story of how Mongoose Publishing began.

Sprange keeps the focus on the business of RPGs. There is no wayward art or fancy layout. This works heavily in the favor of the material. Though the style seems stream of thought, the layout flows in a thorough direction with reference points to earlier material. The only thing lacking is a bookmarks page, but I have a feeling that this book was written to be read in one setting.

For the aspiring RPG Employee
Every page offers helpful advice on how to break into and start your own business. I found the entire book helpful, like a giant WIKI of what a Role-Playing company really is. One of the more surprising parts was the segment on how unviable a PDF only business really is.

The Iron Word
From a distance, the RPG world seems like a difficult one to break into. But consider I Am Mongoose your initiation to get close enough to the building and look in. Though Sprange stresses the hard work involved, the detailed statistics, definitions and plans provide a thorough blueprint that considerably takes away the overwhelming aura of the RPG industry.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
I am Mongoose, and so can you!
Publisher: Mongoose
by Shane O. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 02/19/2009 16:03:59
Be honest, you’ve thought about it. Whether you’re working a regular job, a kid still working your way through school, or have a few freelance pieces with your name on them, you’ve always wondered what it’d be like to work in the RPG industry as a full-time gig. In fact, odds are good that you’ve likely thought of not just working in the industry, but of founding the next major RPG mover-and-shaker. But eventually, you stop daydreaming, shake your head, and go back about your life with a chuckle at the mere thought. After all, what do you know about starting an RPG business? You wouldn’t even know where to start.

Now, the answer is here. You start with this book: I am Mongoose, and so can you!

Written by Matthew Sprange, co-founder and owner of Mongoose Publishing, one of the undisputable big boys on the RPG block, I am Mongoose is his book about how you start an RPG company from the ground up. He takes you point-by-point from just having the idea, up through the end of the first year, and even slightly beyond, evaluating what should and shouldn’t be done at each step to help your new company survive and thrive. Before we look at this book any closer though, it’s important to establish what this book doesn’t do; being that it’s about starting a business, that’s just as important as knowing what it does bring to the table.

To be clear, this is NOT a complete guide to founding a new business. You won’t find here information on how to properly file taxes as a business entity; you won’t find a discussion on what business laws you should be aware of in your area; and you won’t find a section dealing with good business ethics in the marketplace. Make no mistake, the purpose of this book is to serve as an outline for how you can successfully create and market your RPG materials; it’s not a gamer’s version of “Business Management for Dummies.”

That said, as far as outlines for a business plan goes, this book really knows its stuff, and walks you through things step by step. Insightfully, the very first question is poses to you is to ask what your current position is – knowing where you are and what resources and materials you have before you try and found your new business is extremely important, and the book doesn’t try to gloss over the details of how much work this will take, and what you’ll be sacrificing to make it happen.

Beyond this, I am Mongoose covers the natural progression of making a company – what your basic costs and returns will be to produce and sell a typical product, creating a cash flow plan for the year, print vs. PDF publishing, distribution, and more. The writing here is informal in its style, and often punctuated by examples from what Mongoose was just starting out. At several points, mostly when discussing managing your finances over time, example graphs are given breaking down how much money goes to what in a given period of time.

The book is frank, almost surprisingly so, about the details of some particular aspects of getting your business going. If you’ve already got a high-paying job and a family, for example, I am Mongoose doesn’t hesitate to tell you that you’re in a riskier position than a single person with less money, as you’ll be giving up the high-paying job (remember, this book is devoted to the idea of creating your own full-time company) and putting your family’s finances at risk. That same level-headed advice is given for things from whether or not you should have a business partner, to whether you should go for your own distributing service or use a fulfillment center. The book’s honesty is refreshing, as it doesn’t try to sugar-coat things.

…well, maybe one thing. When the book gets to the subject of distribution, it then begins to discuss Mongoose Publishing’s Flaming Cobra imprint, and this takes up almost the last third of the book. Now, to be fair, the way I am Mongoose describes Flaming Cobra makes it sound really great. Basically, as an imprint, you retain being your own company, letting Mongoose Publishing handle the printing (and possibly the PDF hosting) and distribution (and even a bit of the advertising) for your book, paying the distribution costs and taking a relatively small share of the profits, and passing the rest back to you. You still have to make the books yourself, but once you’ve got them completed, having a Flaming Cobra imprint means that Mongoose largely takes it over from there.

I did like reading about Mongoose’s Flaming Cobra imprint and what it offers new companies – which is truly impressive – but this particular section was slightly off-putting to me for two reasons. The first was that I always feel a bit suspicious when someone starts describing their service, and just how incredible it is. I’m not saying the book’s not being honest about anything; I certainly don’t feel that it’s misrepresenting Flaming Cobra; I just think that it’s pretty clear they’re hawking themselves, and no one ever presents themselves in a bad light. My second problem with this was that the book devotes a fairly generous amount of space to Flaming Cobra…maybe a bit too much. Again, it’s a good service, but I think more could have been said for going it alone.

One other minor nitpick I had was with the technical construction of the book itself. While it’s a relatively short book, weighing in at just over three dozen pages, the lack of any sort of easy-navigation functions were a tad frustrating. The book is laid out in section, not chapters, so there’s no table of contents or anything like that, nor are there bookmarks. If you want to find a specific part of it to look back over, you’ve just got to scroll through until you find it. I’m sorry, but PDFs should always have bookmarks in them, at the very least.

Lest any of the above turn you off to this book, let me reiterate: if you seriously want to start your own RPG company, this book is your holy scripture. It will honestly and accurately lay down what you need to do, and what it’ll likely cost you, in plain and simple terms. It’s a roadmap on your quest to make your own game company – yes it’s an expensive roadmap, but it’s worth it for the penetrating honesty, specificity, and clarity with which it presents the things you will need to know. If you want to start your own business making RPGs, I am Mongoose, and so can you! isn’t just your best bet, it’s very nearly essential.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
I am Mongoose, and so can you!
Publisher: Mongoose
by NA S. U. S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/14/2009 06:07:01
I picked this PDf up yesterday, skimmed the parts that interested me most, then took the time to go back and read it cover to cover with my highlighter handy.

I am glad I purchased it.

Skortched Urf' Studios has been planning from the beginning to start small with PDF's and "learn our craft" before moving up to print products. This product was perfect for me and anyone else looking to move into (or start with) dead-tree RPG products.

I found his take on the PDF market to be spot-on, especially with the 4E/GSL slowdown in full effect. He lays out numbers for several different types of books, and a reasonable expectation of sales. He covers various options for getting your books into print, and plugs Flaming Cobra heavily. (Rightfully so, in my opinion.)

This product is less useful if you intend to remain PDF only, but even then I would still say there is valuable information to be had. I know some might balk at the thirty dollar price point, but that is cheap for the information I took away from this product.

Money well spent for me, maybe not for everyone, but I am very happy with the purchase.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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