“The Essence of Wine” Earns a Spot on the New York Times Best Wine Books of 2014 List

Author Alder Yarrow taps the Blurb self-publishing platform to create, publish, and distribute his best selling book

SAN FRANCISCO — (BUSINESS WIRE) — December 22, 2014Blurb, the independent book and magazine publishing platform, today announced that wine blogger and Blurb author Alder Yarrow’s first book, The Essence of Wine: Celebrating the Delights of the Palate, made the New York Times’ Best Wine Books of 2014 list which is compiled by wine writer, Eric Asimov, each year. Yarrow joins a growing list of experts and authors who have opted to use self-publishing platforms like Blurb in order to retain complete creative control over their work, bringing their books to market in record time.

Independently published projects are increasingly winning mainstream awards and recognition, and delivering strong sales via distribution capabilities historically available only to “traditional” publishing houses.

“We’re seeing a shift in who is publishing and how they are publishing; nowadays individuals and businesses are more often publishing their own projects themselves instead of hoping to secure a book deal from a publishing house,” said Eileen Gittins, founder and CEO, Blurb. “What’s happening is that people like Alder, who have valuable expertise and have cultivated a digital following, are selecting and then converting the best of their work into digital and print publications. In a world of abundance, the filter is the value – in this case, a blog reimagined – and a book becomes the ultimate in curation.”

Alder Yarrow is regarded as one of the most influential wine bloggers on the Internet today. Yarrow’s site, Vinography, features wine, sake, and restaurant reviews, editorials, wine news, event coverage, and more.

“Over the years, I’ve been approached by publishers who wanted me to do a book with them, but when I was finally ready with a proposal for a book I was excited about, every publisher I approached turned me down. They thought it was too artsy, and didn’t think they could sell it as I had conceived of it. I wasn’t willing to compromise my vision for what the book would be, and needed a publisher who felt the same way, but it just wasn’t happening,” said Yarrow. “So I decided to do it on my own using Blurb and I couldn’t be more pleased.”

In December 2013, Yarrow launched a Kickstarter campaign with an $18,000 goal. The money would cover a designer, copy editor, and publishing costs. Yarrow surpassed his goal, raising just over $24,000 from over 180 backers in fewer than 30 days.

“Self-publishing allowed me to retain creative control and produce a beautiful book that I’m incredibly proud of,” said Yarrow.


Yarrow isn’t alone in his self-publishing journey. Other well-known creative folks have published their projects via the Blurb self-publishing platform to create, promote, share, and sell their books as well.

Former Dire Straits guitarist, Jack Sonni, created his book, Gatherings: Recipes from the Rustic Soul of Healdsburg, which features recipes from local Healdsburg talent. French-born, Los Angeles-based chef and television personality, Ludo Lefebvre, created the tenth anniversary edition of his book, Crave: The Feast of the Five Senses, a cookbook that centers around engaging the five senses with each recipe, on Blurb. Serial founder and owner of Sydney’s famous Remo General Store, Remo Giuffre, created his Blurb book, General Thinker, which catalogs his own life as an entrepreneur and brand builder. All had their different reasons for using a self-publishing platform, but most involved retaining creative control, speed to market, and the ability to retain more dollars from the sale of each book.

According to the 2013 Bowker Self-Publishing Report, self-publishing is very much a growing industry. At the time of the report, there were more than 458,000 self-published titles in the United States. Since 2008 self-published titles increased by 437% with print titles alone growing by 29% in 2013. Many of these titles have made their way onto the USA Today, New York Times and Publishers Weekly best sellers lists.

“The Essence of Wine” is a stunning coffee-table book of images and essays about the many flavors and aromas of wine. Acclaimed wine writer Alder Yarrow has collaborated with award-winning food photographer Leigh Beisch to create a wine book like no other. The book highlights 47 of the essential aromas and flavors of wine, and recommends wines you can buy that smell or taste of that essence. The book makes a fantastic gift for any wine or food lover, from those just starting out on their journey to the most die-hard wine connoisseurs. It is a beautiful coffee-table book, available in print for $75 on Vinography or in eBook format for $30 on Blurb.

For more on this news, please visit www.blurb.com .

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