Summer/Fall 2014 Book Festival: Countdown to Preparedness

Today I am thrilled to welcome back Jim Cobb for another interview and giveaway in the Summer/Fall 2014 Backdoor Survival Book Festival.  This week we are featuring Jim’s popular book, Countdown to Preparedness: The Prepper’s 52 Week Course to Total Disaster Readiness.

So what is it that I like so much about this book?  In classic, Backdoor Survival style, Jim guides you through the steps to becoming a full-fledged prepper in just 52 weeks. Each chapter represents a single week with a summary page of assignments at the end of each week.  Not to worry, the tasks are are not daunting and can be accomplished without a lot of stress and without a humongous budget.

Countdown to Preparedness Book Festival

Enjoy the interview and be sure to check out the details of this week’s giveaway below.

An Encore Interview with Jim Cobb

One question on everyone’s mind is what they would do if a disaster or even a collapse occurred in their own back yard. If that happened to you, would you bug-in or bug-out and why.

I strongly believe bugging out is a last resort, not a primary plan, for most disasters. For most of us, our homes are where we have the bulk of our supplies and it makes little sense to abandon all of it unless we truly need to do so.

If you did decide to hunker down and bug-in, what items would you include for comfort? Or would you?

Comfort items and boredom relievers are very important to psychological well being. They can occupy the mind and reduce stress. For myself, I have a ton of books to read as well as several board games to play with the family. We also typically have a fair amount of comfort foods (chips, popcorn, candy, etc) on hand, which is great for both kids and adults.

These days, it seems as though a new book about survival or preparedness is released daily. How is your book different from the others and why should we read it?

COUNTDOWN TO PREPAREDNESS is a very task-oriented book. Rather than just giving information, it is designed to get one moving and actively preparing, rather than just letting it all be a mental exercise.

The book is structured like a class, where each week there is a reading assignment, specific items to purchase, and other tasks to be completed. The plan is that if someone goes through each of the 52 weeks in the book and completes all of the assigned work, they will be fully prepared for just about any disaster that could last upwards of three months.

What is your favorite survival, disaster, or post-apocalyptic film or TV show?

I loved the first season of Jericho and feel it was very realistic in how it portrayed the human element of disaster recovery.

It is said that everyone has a book inside them. What advice do you have for the budding author?

To paraphrase the best piece of advice I ever received myself, “butt in chair, fingers on keyboard.”

Thinking about writing a book won’t get it done. Endless research won’t get it done. Talking about writing a book won’t get it done. If you’re serious about writing, the only way to do it is to put words on the page. Even if you can only carve out 15 minutes a day, sit down and get writing.

The Book Giveaway

A copy of COUNTDOWN TO PREPAREDNESS  has been reserved for one lucky reader.

To enter the giveaway, you need to utilize the Rafflecopter form below.  There are two ways to enter including a “free for everyone” option that requires just a single click. Easy peasy!

The deadline is 6:00 PM Pacific next Thursday with the winner notified by email and announced in the Sunday Survival Buzz.  Please note that the winner must claim their book within 48 hours or an alternate will be selected.

The “Rafflecopter”

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Final Word

Jim Cobb is the well-grounded author of a number of preparedness books.  You would think there would be a lot of overlap in his books but I have found each to be unique in its approach and content. Going through the chapters of COUNTDOWN TO PREPAREDNESS reminded me that a prepper’s job is never done and that sometimes, it is the smallest of things that are most easily overlooked.

I hope you will enter the giveaway to win your own copy of this book for your survival library!

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!

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Spotlight Item:  Countdown to Preparedness: The Prepper’s 52 Week Course to Total Disaster Readiness

Every year, rivers flood, hurricanes strike, and earthquakes shake buildings to the ground. Catastrophic disasters can hit anywhere at any time. There’s simply no escaping them. The only reasonable thing you can do is get prepared.

This beginner’s guide to prepping shows how to create a self-sustainable home for surviving anything from a power outage to societal collapse. In just a few hundred carefully thought-out pages, Countdown to Preparedness takes you and your family from clueless to completely ready.

The life-saving program includes information on gathering food and water rations, stockpiling emergency supplies like batteries and first-aid materials, creating a bug-out plan, and even choosing firearms and other weapons for home defense.

Accompanied with detailed illustrations and charts, Countdown to Preparedness offers a six-week course that takes you by the hand as it leads you from unprepared to expertly armed in every way. By the end of this book, you learn the survival skills, emergency stocks, and intuitive know-how to save your own life and the lives of your families in the worst of situations.

Bargain Bin:  Today is all about books.  Listed below are all of the books in the current Backdoor Survival Book Festival. There are both fiction and non-fiction titles and a bit of something for everyone.

Note:  If you covet an e-Book reader, consider the Kindle.  Prices start at $119 although a basic kindle is only $69.  And if not, at the very least pick up the free Kindle app so that you can read Kindle books on your PC or favorite electronic device.

Summer 2014 Book Festival #6 – Fiction

Day After Disaster
Jingling Our Change (Liberty Dying Series Book 1)
Nanny State Nightmare (Liberty Dying Book 2)
The Shadow Patriots
Survivor Max: Too Smart to Die
Collective Retribution
Event Horizon (The Perseid Collapse Post Apocalyptic Series Book 2)
Forsaking Home
Sanctuary: A Postapocalyptic Novel
299 Days: The War
Bishop’s Song (Holding Their Own Book 6)

Summer 2014 Book Festival #6 – Non-Fiction

The Knowledge: How to Rebuild Our World from Scratch
Food Storage for Self-Sufficiency and Survival: The Essential Guide for Family Preparedness
The Provident Prepper: A Common-Sense Guide to Preparing for Emergencies
Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide: Food, Shelter, Security, Off-the-Grid Power and More Life-Saving Strategies for Self-Sufficient Living
Duct Tape 911: The Many Amazing Medical Things You Can Do to Tape Yourself Together
The Prepper’s Blueprint: The Step-By-Step Guide To Help You Through Any Disaster
Countdown to Preparedness: The Prepper’s 52 Week Course to Total Disaster Readiness


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A Practical Guide to Storing Food For the Long Term
99 cents for the eBook – also available in print!

When most people start thinking about family preparedness, they focus on food. Not shelter, gear, sanitation, power, self-defense or the myriad of other concerns that need to be addressed following an emergency or disaster situation. Quite simply, food is the number one concern people have second only to their concern for having an adequate supply of water.

The Prepper’s Guide to Food Storage is a book about food: What to store, how to store it and best practices. It is a roadmap for showing ordinary citizens that long-term food storage is not something that will overwhelm or burden the family budget.

This book is based upon my own tried and true personal experience as someone who has learned to live the preparedness lifestyle by approaching emergency preparedness and planning in a systematic, step-by-step manner. Nothing scary and nothing overwhelming - you really can do this!

  1. The deciding factor to bug out or bug in would depend on the safety factor of the home. ( can I keep the family safe from all predators..human or animal, is the home structurally/environmentally safe to stay in)

  2. I would bug out instead of hunkering down at home if there was any civil unrest I think. Choosing when to go is probably one of the most critical things to do.

  3. I would only bug out as a last resort, and not sure what that would be. Would hate to leave preps behind and really not sure it would be safer, if we could get there, in an unfamiliar area.

  4. Bugging out will be the last resort. When the bad guys coming to my neighborhood have weapons that are overpowering. Armored vehicles, grenades, any weapons of 50 cal or above. Then I’m out of here.

  5. the only thing i can think of that would prompt me to bug out would be an ambush that set my house on fire or something like that.
    on a different note…Gaye I hope that you and your stuff make it safely through this hurricane that I heard is heading your way.

  6. If there was any threat to my family’s safety we would bug out. A secondary factor would be long-term power outage. We would bug out to a nearby location where the majority of my family lives so we could all be together. Jim Cobb’s book looks like the best I’ve seen for being prepared. I’ve done most of my prepping from reading information on websites and I do whatever I’m reading at the moment that applies to my family. I am a list maker and I like to be organized and check things off so having a task-oriented book where I can have all the information I need in one place and check it off as done would be perfect!

  7. I would bug out if my home was about to be destroyed, fire, flood, etc. Or otherwise rendered unlivable, like a gas or chemical spill nearby.

  8. I would want to stay in my home as long as possible. But if some danger threatened or destroyed the house itself, such as fire, flood, or destroyed by a tornado or if the house was uninhabitable due to chemicals or radiation, then we would be forced to leave. But beyond that, we would stay put and try to defend what we have here.

    I can’t afford to maintain a second place to bug out to, plus there would be no guarantee that if we had one it wouldn’t have already been taken over by someone else by the time we got there. How bad would that be, to bug out to your back up location, only to find it claimed and defended by someone else or destroyed and looted. And now you have nothing, because in your absence from your initial home, that too was claimed by a quick thinking opportunist. And somehow I don’t think they will just hand it all back over to you just because you have a piece of paper saying you own it.

    I think I would prefer to stay put and defend what I know I have for as long as I can.

  9. At the point that the safety of my family is more jeopardized by staying at home than by leaving, we would bug out. For example, being flooded or burned out or overrun by intruders (beyond our ability to fend them off).

  10. I’m the prepper in the family. My husband ‘humors’ me. I have an 18 year old son whom I share all of my knowledge and location of supplies with. He understands when to stay put and when to go. I rely on him mainly since my other three sons are Autistic. My brother in law is military and lives fairly close. I would watch what he does with my sister and their kids. He knows more than most as he’s been promoted several times in the last four years. We are of Native American descent so the reservation would be self sufficient if we need to bug out. I would prefer to stay home. We live in a good area and my other three sons would already have a hard enough time. Civil unrest would most definitely have us bugging out.

  11. At the point where I would need to bugout I would probably kill myself and my cats. That’s because I would be moments away from being killed and the cats would have to survive on their own or become food for a human predator. Everything in my life is about the cats. And I already live in a bugout location so if my house and community are overrun then things are very bad indeed.

  12. I like the comforts of my own home & all the survival items. Civil unrest (maurauders) and police to escort you to a FEMA camp, would be the signal to bug out. Having caches to Point B location helps for the travel to and come back to pick up the rest of the caches. Having caches close to the bug out place also helps. Being ready physically and mentally is the key.

  13. We would bug out if we were no longer able to defend our home or if a medical situation arose where we felt we would be safer elsewhere.

  14. Bugging out would only occur when the house/neighborhood is no longer physically safe (flooding, wildfire, hurricane–depending on strength). We’ve built a great enclave of neighbors with various skills, and a “we’re-in-this-together” attitude. I believe we’d do better as a group here, than as smaller units elsewhere.

  15. The principal reason to bug out from my house would be that it has become unsafe to stay, whether due to physical damage or external threat to the safety of my family.

  16. Bugging out would only be a last resort for us. We may not be in the safest area, but all of our preps are here, family is close, and we have our protective plans. Anywhere else we would go would be a crap shoot anyway. Hopefully we can hunker down in most situations.

  17. A disaster in my immediate area would probably be the deciding factor in bugging out, or if my mobile home park became unsafe such due to fires or gangs.

  18. Civil unrest in my neighborhood or looking like my neighborhood would be nxt that my neighbors & I were unable to defend. Or a tsunami. I would only leave if unsafe for me & my family.

  19. Living in an apartment I don’t have alot of storage so my supply levels running low would be the deciding factor to bug out

  20. Chose my locale carefully and plan on staying put! Sounds like the book provides a step by step guide to getting it together – would be very useful to me – cheers

  21. bugging out would be the last resort. I have no where to bug out “TO”. I hope to change that in the next few years. hope nothing happens before that!

  22. I think we would only bug out if the house became un-livable. As of right now we don’t have a location to bug out to, so we would stay home for as long as possible.

  23. For me it would have to be either too much civil unrest in my area, depleted resources or environmental concerns that would cause me to uproot.

  24. So much great information on the blog. It makes me think if I am really ready if something should happen. I am always ready for a snow storm but I really need to get more prepared in canning foods and water supply.

  25. The deciding factor for me to bug out rather than hunker down would be the dangerousness of the situation, ie: weather too extreme for our 180 year old home, or marshal law in our area.

  26. I don’t want to leave my home but we live in the city so leaving is probably going to happen. I have an urban garden going and don’t want to start over but I know leaving it is the safest thing to do.

  27. I live in the PNW but am working in MT for the next year.a lot of my coworkers live in my area so we would convoy home and I would stay as long as possible. I would only bug out if there were no other option.

  28. We would stay put as We ARE the bug out location for the family still living here.SO if living here becomes unsafe or untenable. We’d be heading to one of the other family members(Sibling or cousin in another state) that have been preparing with as much as we all could carry safely and “bug-out”

  29. Being in a rural area, for now the only time we would bug out is if the home we live in was going to be destroyed in some manner.

  30. It would take a lot to make me bug out, we already live in an isolated area. I would only bug out of my family were in jeopardy.

  31. We live within 10 miles of a nuclear power plant. I would not hesitate to drop everything and leave at the first hint of trouble. Unfortunately traffic would be ridiculous and I don’t really have much hope that we would be able to get out. But, until we can move away from here, that is one event that would have me trying to bug out!

  32. The main deciding factor in me choosing to bug out is the safety of my home. If I am in danger in my home and feel like I need to seek help other places I will. Hopefully I am able to get to a second location I already have planned.

  33. The main factor in me choosing to bug out would be safety. If my home becomes unsafe for me to stay in then I will have no choice. Safety is the most important thing for me and my family.

  34. It’s been said already, but I have to agree. The only situation that I’d consider bugging out would be if our home was in direct danger. Otherwise, we are staying put.

  35. I tried to reply to the question but it wouldn’t allow me to type. I plan to bug out to my grandmothers house at this point because I worry about getting a reliable source of heat into my apartment. She has a good wood stove and I personally stacked the multiple cords by the back door. I’ve got about a weeks worth of preps in my place just in case, but since she’s only a mile away and would need us to help her too, the vast majority of my stash is around her place. To bug out away from there to my alternate location, there would have to be a complete societal meltdown or the place would need to be destroyed.

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