Bike to Work Book free chapters

Happy Friday, everybody! Carlton Reid has posted a sampler of free chapters from the Bike To Work Book for your online viewing pleasure. Carlton is doing this in collaboration with Commute By Bike. Let us know what you think of the book.

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0 thoughts on “Bike to Work Book free chapters”

  1. david p. says:

    is that what the book will look like? looks more like a collection of advertisements with some narrative.

  2. Robert S. says:

    I don’t need a book of advertisements. All the work put into it could have been put to better use. If the book is more condensed without all the ads it may be more appealing.

  3. Carlton Reid says:

    I’m sorry you feel that way.

    1. The ad/content ratio in the PDF is stacked very heavily in favor of editorial content.

    2. The ads will be more diluted in the 250 page book.

    3. We gotta eat.

    4. I subscribe to Onion News Network videos. This is advertising supported. I’m very happy to watch the ads because the content is worth it. The same goes for lots of content on TV, on the web, in magazines.

    5. If ads are tailored to the content, they can be extremely useful.

  4. Franky says:

    I think the advertisement is a supporting element of this book. I assume that the target group is people who are interested in becoming bike commuter. Therefore it is ok to give these people immediate suggestions on where to look for bikes and equipment through the ads. Good job 🙂

  5. dW says:

    it’s great! I really like the mindset, very open about all the different ways people use bikes for transportation. Letting people tell their stories in their own words is wonderful. I don’t mind the ads at all; it’s how I’m getting to read it for “free” after all, and I’m interested in the products in the ads anyway. Thanks for posting the link.

  6. Scott R says:

    The ads make sense if you think of the magazine model. Magazines are for sale, but the price point is lower than a book because of all of the ads.

    Franky made a good point in that the beginner or casual reader of the book will get an eyefull of the products and brands available in the same place they learn the basics of bike commuting.

    Will the book be available only as an E-book? Is it free? Will it be print-on-demand, or available in any stores?

    Nice job so far.

    The only thing I don’t like are photos of people wearing expensive business suits while cycling. I’m sure it can be done in some places under certain conditions for short rides, but those kinds of photos seem so staged to be as to be funny. 🙂

  7. Carlton Reid says:

    I agree, newbies will actually seek out ads, because they won’t know which brands are out there. I do this when I get into a new pastime – I did it for podcasting. I bought beginner mags (and books) and looked at the ads just as much as the editorial.

    Regarding the suits, this might not be common in the UK or US but it’s totally normal in the Netherlands, Germany or Denmark.

    Dunno which shots you think were staged but the shot of the businessman in glasses with the fawn-colored suit was a grab shot taken on the street in Croatia.

    The book will be available as a print book via Amazon etc, it will also be available as a rich media e-book, with videos and stuff.

    The business model is very much a magazine one. That’s my background (BikeBiz, On Your Bike mags in the UK). I’ve also published books which contained adverts. I did the first English-language guidebook to Lebanon since the end of the Lebanese civil war and this had ads. I thought they added to the book, giving information and pix that the book couldn’t do for everybody.

    Thanks for all your feedback. It’ll help me improve the Bike to Work Book.

  8. kathleen says:

    If I had never made coffee for myself before and was reading an article on all the ways to brew coffee I would appreciate ads showing me the kind of appliances available. I think the ads are fine as a starting place to get one acquainted with cycling-specific products.

  9. tyler says:

    looks great. the ads are a necessary evil. Great BikesRubbish?! photo in there as well of the extracycle!

  10. hokan says:

    I couldn’t view/download without registering. I’m not the registering kind.

  11. Carlton Reid says:

    Docstoc doesn’t require registration. However, it’s a Flash-based site. Is your computer able to view Flash normally?

    If the doc doesn’t load to view, how about the ‘download PDF’ button?

    Alternatively, PDF is also available as a download via my iTunes site at

    Over the next few days it will be available on other sites.

  12. John says:

    Nice. Thanks. Good photos. Catchy format. Interesting content. Good to see answers to some of those niggling questions and doubts people have. I hope the final product will go deeper and have chapters useful beyond the beginning stage. Bike maintenance, for example. A chapter about holidays would be good too. Maybe we commute 11 months of the year, but when it’s holiday time… where shall me and my bike go, how to get there, what to pack… ?

  13. Carlton Reid says:

    Hi John.

    Glad you like it. The final product expands on all of the themes in the PDF and contains lots more stuff, too.

    Yes, there’s a bike maintenance chapter but it can’t hope to compete with full books on the subject. It covers the basics only, but also has links to lots of video tutorials.

    I can’t say I’d thought about including anything about holidays, or using the bike for things other than work. I don’t think it would warrant a whole chapter – after all there are libraries of these sort of books already – but it’s a good idea to mention the concepts.

  14. Carlton Reid says:

    For those not fond of the docstoc viewer, here’s a slide version via Scribd.

    Use the magnifying glass.

    I’m also working on an version, which will be an online page turner.

  15. SurlyBee says:

    I enjoyed the free chapters. I liked the ads even though my two bikes (one being a Big Dummy) are quite enough for me at the moment (the Dahon is quite tempting though).

    I look forward to showing this book to my sister who is new to bike commuting and to anyone else I run into who have the issues you address (scared of traffic, offended by sweat, etc.)

    Please keep up the good work!

  16. Carlton Reid says:

    Thanks, SB.

    Here’s the Issuu version, as promised:

    Also, the full 250+ page e-book will also be free, not just the sampler. There will still be a pay-for print edition.

    A folding bike is essential, IMHO.

    Sisters are always offended by sweat, I find.

    Thanks for your kind words.

  17. CHRehn says:

    I like the “look” and content of the free chapters. The “advertising” is well done and also helps show what products are out there in the big bicycling world. I am looking forward to the finished product. I checked on this morning (12.3.08) and didn’t find it listed. Good Luck.
    Walla Walla, Washington

  18. Carlton Reid says:

    It’s not yet finished!

    Working on it.

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