I’m an entrepreneur because I make games and sell them.

These sources below gave me great understanding about myself as a businessman, and how to run a business.

There are big plans for Lion Root Entertainment, so when it grows, I want to be ready.

Gold Tier

Items in this tier wowed me.

  • Mastery Book – $12 – This books goes over everything along the paths of becoming a master.  By knowing the peeks and troughs of the road to mastery, I find comfort and encouragement in the hard times.

Purple Tier

Items in this tier provided me supreme value for the cost and time invested

  • Smarter Faster Better by Charles Duhigg – $13 – Great advice on how to tweak your thinking to be more productive and be empowered.  Not only for your brain but for your team as well.
  • The One Thing Book – $15 – I wrote a blog post about this, it’s that good.  This book helps me to make priorities for myself in running my company.
  • Lean Startup Book – $20 – The books talks a lot about first getting your product to its minimal viable product.  To me, read it to understand the importance of preventing feature creep.
  • Rhinoceros Success Book – $10 – A fun, short read, on charging hard, like a Rhino, in your business.
  • The E-Myth Revisited Book – $10 – Did you know that you should try to put systems in place to make your business run like clockwork.  This book covers that..
  • The War of Art Book – $10 – Tips and techniques for overcoming the resistance.  A must read for anyone doing something that takes courage.
  • StrengthsFinder 2.0 Assessment – $15 – This taught me to work on my strengths instead of my weaknesses.  It helped me understand more about myself.
  • The Kaizen Way Book – $10 – Breaking tasks up into smaller pieces helps us to take on big projects.  This small book helps to reemphasize that.
  • Mastery Book – $10 – Becoming a master at anything takes time and concentration.  This small book was so good that I wrote a post on it.
  • So Good They Can’t Ignore You Book – $20 – Become so good at what you do, that people can’t ignore you. The path? Deliberate painful practice. I’m implementing it into Artwork, but I’m not sure how to iteratively do it for games.
  • Antifragile Book – $10 – Not really focused on making games, but it’s got good advice on making sure that you’re able to survive big catastrophic failures, and gain from small failures. I wrote about it here.
  • Mini Habits Book – $10 – I’ve tried goal setting in the past, and failed miserably.  This has helped me gain some confidence in setting goals again.
  • The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy – $10 –This book brought up that success comes from momentum and routines. Two key pieces of success mentioned routinely in Self-Help books, and something that I never really focused (but will now).

Blue Tier

Items in this tier provided me a good amount of value for the cost and time invested

  • Necessary Endings by Dr. Henry Cloud – $16 – The book explains the importance of mourning losses in relationships or careers in life.  If you need help getting over something, this is a great read.  For me, it’s getting over my burnout of the Army.
  • The Now Habit by Dr. Neil Fiore – $10 – I felt overwhelmed learning about art, and compared myself to people on Arstation.  The book gives recommendations on how to defeat that mentality.
  • Do the Work Book – $10 – More tips and encouragement about persevering through the ups and downs of doing something worthwhile in your life.
  • The Ultimate Question Book – $20 – Interesting read.  Ever been asked, “On a Scale from 0-10, how likely would you be to recommend this product/service to a friend?”  This is what the book is about.  Might be useful for indies if you can track their happiness level by logging into game.  Get’s me thinking.
  • Innovate the Pixar Way Book – $20 – I want to create a creative company.  This book takes advice from one of the most creative companies in the world.
  • Essentialism Book – $15 – Cut the fat out of what you do.  Try things, but once you know what you like, invest heavily in those.
  • Standout Assessment – $10 – The next step in StrengthFinder is StandOut.  It tells you what you uniquely bring to the team.  I bring “structure to drama.”  That gave me a boost that I’m not entirely crazy for trying to learn to make games with no formal education.
  • Legend of the Monk and the Merchant Book – $10 – Need arguments for overcoming Christians who think making money is evil or that ministry is the only way to serve Jesus?
  • The Millionaire Next Door Book – $10 – I didn’t know jack about ads in Facebook.  This course lead me where to go.  Granted, I can’t afford alot of ads, but I can learn the process for when I start to grow.  Great course, more focused towards B2B though.  I’m still trying to figure out how all these B2B courses can be applied to Indies
  • The Millionaire Mind Book – $10 – Best practices for becoming wealthy.  You don’t need to be academically gifted.  Keys to success : hard work, integrity, and focus.
  • The Warrior Ethos Book – $15 – Talks about the mentality to embrace in life, especially for those who are trying to be creative.  As a soldier, this also hit home.
  • Thou Shall Prosper Book – $15 – Overcoming American beliefs that making money is evil, or that making a lot of money is evil.
  • Turning Pro Book – $10 – Differences between the amateur and the professional.  Follow the paths of the pros, and be disciplined, your business depends on it
  • Virtual Freedom Book – $15 – It’s important for an Indie Dev to know they can’t do everything by themselves.  This book gives detailed advice on hiring Virtual Assistants.  I’ll be using this when I start generating revenue.
  • Peopleware Book – $30 – Take care of your people, and choose people that are self-motivated.  It goes against a lot of what I learned in the Military in leadership.  Gabe Newell recommended the book in a speech on Youtube, so I read it.  Good stuff to keep in my as my company grows.
  • Rework Book – $15 – Good, 1 paged thoughts on how to run your business.  Super easy read with good messages.
  • Less Doing More Living Book – $14 – A good short read on some hacks to automate your life.  Pretty helpful for a solo developer.
  • The Entrepreneur’s Blueprint to Massive Success Book – $22 – A decent book on what to do with information overload. It helped me to realize that I need to continue to narrow down what it is I want to do.
  • 9 Things Successful People do Differently Book – $8 – A list of good habits to develop to become successful.  My takeaway was “if-then” planning.

Green Tier

Items in this tier provided me some value for the cost and time invested

  • Best Year Ever Online Course – $350 – I wanted to achieve my goals this year.  I thought by purchasing this course; I’d realize them.  This book helped me to figure out what I wanted out of this year, but I bit off more than I could chew, and my desires changed throughout 2016.  So the course helped, but without the discipline and clarity of knowing where I want to go, I haven’t achieved all my goals.  He does mention how goals do change, and that even if we fall short them, we did better than not trying at all.
  • The School of Greatness by Lewis Howes – $18 – Another goal setting book.  Goals, are important, and so is your attitude on achieving them.
  • Extreme Productivity by Robert Pozen – $23 – Another goal setting book.  I’m finding them to be repetitive, but still providing me value by reinforcing how important it is.
  • Level Up Your Life by Steve Kamb – $12 – This book combines goal setting with the micro-rewards seen in Video Games.
  • Living Forward by Michael Hyatt – $13 – Goal setting and having a vision for your is one of Michael Hyatt’s strengths.  I think because I hear it so much from his blog, I’m pretty confident in this area.  Here’s a book for you if you want to learn to direct your life.
  • Start Book – $10 – Some Beats None.  So do something, even when you feel you’re not doing anything.
  • The Magic of Thinking Big Book – $10 – You’re success is contained by your ability to think big.  Whatever level of success you want your Indie Dev game / business to succeed at, think bigger.  I am.
  • The Introvert Advantage Book – $10 – Understanding what drains my energy, and areas I need to concentrate on because they don’t come naturally to me is invaluable knowledge.  Good book for understanding yourself and others who are introverts.
  • The Fascination Advantage Assessment – $20 – This helped to reemphasize to play to my strengths, and not be someone else.  My Archetype: The Veiled Strength. How the World Sees Me: 1- Realistic 2- Intentional 3 – To the-Point.
  • How the Mighty Fall Book – $15 – Good things to avoid as my Indie Dev company grows bigger.  Key thing, don’t be arrogant and keep doing what you do best, always.
  • The Go-Getter Book – $1 – Get it done, whatever way, whatever means, whatever you need to do to get it done, go get it done.
  • Bird by Bird Book – $10 – You get things done one at a time.  One at a time.  That’s what’s helping me to build my brand, my website, and my game.
  • Brain Rules Book – $10 – You are the biggest investment in your business.  Take care of yourself by working out, sleeping enough and eating right.  There’s science in this book to reinforce it.
  • Crush It Book – $15 – We need to work hard to succeed in making games, or whatever we want to succeed in.  Relentlessly pursue it.
  • DISC Profile Assessment – $30 – This helped me to understand my behavioral preference.  Knowing my personal inclinations helps me to better interact with people.  I’m a High S (Stability) and a High (Interactive) which means pretty much I like interacting with people patiently.
  • Walking on Water Book – $15 – This book spoke to me about being true to myself in my business.  Not being afraid to express who I am.
  • See You at the Top Book – $10 – Great book on having the right mentality about life to be a successful businessman.  “Winning isn’t everything, but the effort to win is” – Zig Ziglar
  • Question Behind the Question Book – $10 – Book that emphasizes the importance of not playing the blame game, and focus on how to fix problems.
  • On Managing Yourself Book – $10 – A good collection of advice from famous business people.  My key takeaway, take care of your body.
  • 21 Qualities of Leadership Book – $10 – I’m building a business, not just one game.  I don’t want to have employees, I want team members that I can excite to make games that change people.
  • 48 Days to the Work You Love Assessment – $30 – I took this near the end of my military commitment to gain guidance in what to do next.  My personal style is Contemplator.  Which means I’m detail oriented, analytical, logical and have high standards.
  • Steve Jobs Book – $20 – Great thoughts from a very creative entrepreneur and designer.  I think anyone in our industry can gain from some of his philosophies.
  • $100 Startup Book – $15 – I read this before I really started out.  It had good advice on bootstrapping your projects and designing the life that you want.
  • The Book of Five Rings – $15 – It’s a book on swordfighting that has some applications that can be used in business.  Mostly abstract theories to think about, but still a fun read.
  • The Power of Positive Deviance Book – $20 – Good thoughts on changing a culture.  I might need this if the culture of my organization needs to change.
  • Smartcuts Book – $10 – Business tips on things to keep in mind to accelerate your business.  Not really step by step instructions, but general practices to apply to your business.
  • The Power of Full Engagement Book – $10 – Manage your energy, not your time.  Eat well, sleep well, and stop doing things that drain you.
  • Masters of Doom Book – $12 – Good in-depth detail on how two big members of the industry ran their business at the start.  Good takeaways on what to do right and wrong.
  • Business Secrets of the Bible Book – $20 – I’m a Christian, so seeing what the Bible (written by a Rabbi) has to say about money helps put things into perspective as an Entrepreneur.
  • Paul Jarvis EBooks – $50 – Tips on being a creative while also being an entrepreneur.
  • Anything You Want Book – $9 – Quick tips on being an entrepreneur, and being willing to carve your own way through making your own business.
  • Managing Your Day to Day Book – $8 – It reinforced that I needed a routine, so my wife and I started to get real strict about sticking to one.

White Tier

Items in this tier provided me little to no value for the cost and time invested

  • Getting It Done Book – $1 – 8 Components of Self-Discipline.  A lot of books reinforce some foundation habits that lead to success.  Mission statement, goals, etc.
  • No More Dreaded Mondays Book – $10 – Do what you love.  I’m making video games because I love to make them.  You should do what you love too.  Mondays are awesome to me, because I get 6 days of working on what I love.
  • Different Book – $15 – A little too abstract for me to be actionable. Then again, if someone could teach you to be innovative isn’t easy.
  • How to Be Interesting – $10 – Too vague to be of practical use.

Grey Tier (None So Far)

Items in this tier felt like value was taken away from me for the cost and time invested

Continuing Education

I’m trying to build not only a video game, but also a video game company.

I’d prefer not to get an MBA, so I’ll just keep reading and learning.

Join Lion Root to stay up to date with my learning and game development!


In the interest of transparency, many of the links are affiliate links.  Some things I’ve read aren’t the strongest books out there, so I’ve left those out so you don’t have to waste your time or money on them like I did.