Thursday, January 25, 2018

Two must have resume books job seekers need

Looking for a new job this new year and need some tips on writing a good resume?

Changing or getting a job in the high-tech world we live in now involves more than just who and what you know. With so many companies placing their employment opportunities online and asking applicants to apply online, those who haven’t ever or haven’t in a very long time created a resume, need a bit of help.

The software that so many employers are using these days to accept resumes and applications is called Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). Resumes still needed to grab the attention of those reading and analyzing them, but now, resumes also need to get the attention of the ATS software before they even get to the human level in the hiring process. 

Two books offering help developing a resume and a cover letter (cover letters are still recommended to accompany resumes) include Stand Out Cover Letters by Mark Baker and The Resume Writing Guide by Lisa McGrimmon. Short reviews of each follow.

Stand Out Cover Letters, How to Write Winning Cover Letters That Get You Hired by Mark Baker  gets to the point quickly.  It includes chapters on getting into the right mindset before writing a cover letter, a step-by-step proven method of writing a cover letter, and tips and strategies on how to make a cover letter ATS compliant. It’s a quick read but I highly recommend it for job seekers. 

The author wants the reader to think of the cover letter as a sales letter. He believes job seekers “have to learn how to actively and deliberately sell yourself when you apply for a job.” Baker illustrates to the readers how to redefine and repurpose the cover letter as a sales letter. 

The book carries the reader forward in finding “what makes you stand out as a product and service so you can communicate this to your advantage when you write your letter.”

The Resume Writing Guide, A step-by-step workbook for creating a winning resume by Lisa McGrimmon is a great guide that’s easy to read and even easier to follow. It will help you get your resume up to today’s standards.

The author tells readers she has worked on over 2,000 resumes in her career. Readers will learn the difference between the different kinds of resumes (chronological, functional, or combination), and how to research jobs then develop a resume to target those jobs. 

The author has two chapters dedicated to defining ATS software. She details how it is used by employers, and how to write an ATS compliant resume. The ATS software is used by more and more employers these days and if the software doesn’t like the way a resume for any number of reasons, it is filtered out and denied.

From the way it is formatted or the keywords included on it or if dates, or other items are missing, the resume gets denied and the employer will never see it.There are sections with sample resumes including some in the ATS format. There’s also a section with lists of verbs to use on resumes to make them more effective and standout from the others. It’s a great book for those new to the job market or those looking for a new job or considering a career change. 

Both of these books are helpful and include the information needed to get your resume and cover letter into the 21st. century.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Wishes for you this holiday season...
Be at peace. 
Happy Reading. 
Take lots of photos and make lots of memories. See you next year. 

Monday, July 10, 2017

Book Lists and the Purpose They Serve

I'm a list person. I like to make lists, cross out the items on the list I've completed and make a new list of items still to do or new things that need done. My affinity for lists is why I post many lists of best books on this blog.

I like lists and the book lists are highly useful for the person who is working hard at working hard and may not have the time to walk through a bookstore on a regular basis. Lots of people must find the best books lists helpful because almost very magazine you buy or look through will have a list of new books or must have books for success.

A short list of the magazines with lists of best business books for 2017 included Forbes, Fortune, Inc. and Business Insider. The New York Times also provides a list of top selling business books and you can do a google search to find some of the top selling and best reviewed books.

Below is a list of links that will lead you to lists of recommendations for reading and some reviews:

Inc. Magazine
Standford Business
New York Times
Books for Entrepreneurs
Business Insider

While 2017 is flying by, there's still plenty of time to pick up a few of the books on the list either at your local library or at your local bookstore. Just like I don't apologize for liking lists, I won't apologize for thinking that business books make great beach readers.

As always, keep reading!

P.S. The photo is from

Monday, November 14, 2016

List of best fiction books of 2016

Kirkus Reviews has released a list of the best fiction for 2016. The link is below. Give it a look.

Kirkus is a great site for readers, authors, and book reviews. If you haven't visited their site in the past, the link below will give you a reason to check them out now.

It's also a good time to see if there are any books you'd like to invest your time and money in before we head into 2017. Happy reading.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Late Summer Reading List

Oprah Winfrey has been publishing book lists for many years as part of her book club.  The lists always offer an array of books that should satisfy the most casual to the most dedicated reader. The link below leads to books recommended on her August list.

Topics range from fictional novels to memoirs to a collection of short stories. The list also contains a recommendation for the 50th anniversary edition of "The Valley of the Dolls" by Jacqueline Susann.  I'm in shock that book was published 50 years ago.

I don't know how many if any of the books on her lists that Oprah reads. Nonetheless, the list does help sell books. I've purchased and read many of the books she has recommended over the years. I'm considering ordering the book of short stories on the August list.

Books with short stories are the best reading. And, often times are the best way to highlight the talent of writers. Imagine having to develop a story, a plot and an ending that captures the attention of the reader in just a few short pages. Amazing.

Check out the link below and give us your opinion on any of the books you may have read or are planning to read. Also let us know if you think Oprah's book lists make a difference in your reading life.

Happy Reading

Sunday, March 27, 2016

A Bestseller's List from Success Magazine

The April 2016 issue of "Success" magazine has an interesting bestseller's list  in the back. The list has 10 bestselling business books. The magazine notes "Success analyzes a combination of sales data acquired from Nielsen BookScan-which gathers point-of-sale data from more than 16,000 locations across the U.S.-and from a variety of independently verified sources within the personal development industry."

The list is compiled from sales from Jan. 4 to Jan. 31, 2016. What's interesting is that there are at least two books on the list that where first published decades ago. See if you know which ones. Here's the the 10 books with author names that were listed.

1. StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Tom Rath (Gallup Press)

2. The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts by Gary Chapman (Northfield Publishing)

3. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie (Pocket Books)

4. Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges by Amy Cuddy (Little, Brown and Company)

5. Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol S. Dweck (Ballantine Books)

6. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change by Stephen R. Covey (Simon and Schuster)

 7. Daring Greatly: How the Courage to be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead by Brene Brown, Ph.D. (Avery)

8. The Power of Broke: How Empty Pockets, a Tight Budget, and a Hunger for Success Can Become Your Greatest Competitive Advantage by Daymond John (Crown Business)

9. The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg (Random House)

10. The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown, Ph.D. (Hazelden Publishing & Educational Services)

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year - Welcome 2016

Starting a new year means starting the year with a blank page. How will you write this year's story? Filled with fun and happiness or filled with mystery or intrigue?

This is a great time to set goals for the upcoming year. Some might call them resolutions. I prefer to think of them as goals for the year. Some of my standard new year goals include making more money, reading more books, writing more book reviews and writing more stories.

You might stop at your local bookstore on Jan.1 to find the perfect books to help you get the new year started off right. A few of the books I'm working on as we go from 2015 to 2016 include:

  • M Train by Patti Smith

  • Over the Top by Tom Jones

  • Dream House by Catherine Armsden
  • If I Run by Terri Blackstock

I'm looking forward to meeting more great books this year. Happy New Year!

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

List of recent book reviews

Below is a list of recent book reviews I've posted on Blogcritics. Once again, the list contains some great books by great authors. There is a mix of business and other books on the list. Enjoy.

The Business of Family How to Stay Rich for Generations

Shadow Work

30 Lessons for Loving - {This is such a great book}

Home for Dinner Mixing Food, fun and Conversation for a Happier Family and Healthier Kids


The Greening of Asia

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

The Summer is Going to be Filled with Great Reading

I stopped at my local bookstore today and found a wonderland filled with many new books by some of my favorite authors. I had a great time looking through the new titles. I had to purchase a few including "Early Warning" by Jane Smiley, "The Stranger" by Harlan Coben and "God is Always Hiring" by my all time favorite local author, Regina Brett.

When all of you are making plans for summer travel and trips, make sure and include a stop at your local bookstore. I can't wait to start reading while sitting in the sun on my patio, while sitting on the beach or while sitting at a table at an outdoor table at my favorite coffee shop. It's going to be a great reading summer.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Marketing Fifty Shades of Gray a Success

It started out as a three book series. Then social media took over and turned the series into a must read, bestselling story. Next, came the movie. Then social media took over again. Now there's a bestselling soundtrack according to Twitter,

I can't image there is someone who hasn't at least heard about the books, the movie or the soundtrack, but in case you haven't, here's a link to the books on,

I did read the first two books of the series and gave up on the last one. Don't know why exactly just got a bit tired of the storyline. I bought all three books at one time so it may have been better to purchase them and read them one at a time. The movie has gotten mixed reviews so I think I'll wait for the release on blue ray to watch.

It's making history in more ways than one. The marketing machine on Fifty Shades of Gray has made it a phenomenon. The author may never have to write another word.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Holiday Book Lists

Got some links to some really great holiday book lists for everyone. The lists offer a wide range of books for almost every taste. Here are the links:

Business Books:

List with a variety of books:

Don't forget books for the kids:

A great list of the best holiday books of all time:

Have a great holiday season and take time for some great reading!

Monday, September 15, 2014

A list of recent book reviews

This has been a very busy summer for writing assignments. Unfortunately I’ve made very few blog entries over the past several months. I vow to get better and start posting more regularly. For now, here are a few links that will take you to a few recent book reviews on Blogcritics.

Monday, March 31, 2014

A New ebook on Amazon

I am once again using the blog to blatantly  do some self promotion. I have a new ebook available on Here is a cover photo and the link is below it. 

If you want to take a look or purchase it for your Kindle, here is the link.