Summer 2014 Book Festival: Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide

Gaye Levy Gaye Levy  |  Updated: November 24, 2020
Summer 2014 Book Festival: Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide

Today I share the next author interview and giveaway in the Summer 2014 Backdoor Survival Book Festival.  Jim Cobb, the author of the Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide, is back again for another interview with all new questions plus, of course, a book giveaway.

I would like to start by saying a few words about the book itself.  This is not a re-hash of the FEMA handbook recommending a 3-day kit and some water.  Rather, this a true handbook for what I will call the “gentleman survivalist”.  By that I mean a mainstream man or woman that wants to prepare for the long term, incorporating survivalist strategies in a practical manner without resorting to living in a tree-house in the woods.

Preppers Long Term Survival Guide

This is good stuff; I have read the book myself and discovered some new and less conventional ways of viewing my own preps.  As Jim says in the introduction:

“Let’s go for a walk to the far end of the preparedness trail.  Don’t worry, I’ll be right beside you.  I’ll do my best to make sure you don’t get lost along the way.”

Enjoy the interview and be sure to check out the details of the giveaway below.

An Encore Interview with Jim Cobb

Given your background, knowledge, and experience, what do you feel are the three most important survival or prepping skills?

A. Being able to think outside the box and get creative with problem solving.
B. Interpersonal communication, also known as “people skills.”
C. Situational awareness.

Well, that depends on where I’m starting, of course. I mean, the answer is different if I’m just starting out with prepping vs. having been at it a while and just have a few holes to fill, so to speak.

To what extent does your family participate in your personal preparedness efforts?

I am very fortunate in that my spouse fully supports being prepared for disasters. She is actively involved by handling the gardening and working side by side with me on various projects and such. Our children are being taught various survival skills, including bushcraft and self-defense.

What is your favorite survival or pepping book? (It can be fiction or non-fiction.)

There is absolutely no way I could choose just one single book as my ultimate favorite. That said, I can heartily recommend the following:

The Survival Group Handbook by Charley Hogwood
Stay Alive! By John D. McCann
The Ashfall Trilogy by Mike Mullin

Do you have anything else that you would like to share with the readers on Backdoor Survival?

My newest book, Countdown to Preparedness, was just released at the beginning of January. It is a full 52 week course in disaster readiness. Each week, the reader is given concrete, practical information relating to a specific topic, assignments to complete, a small shopping list, and an amount of water to store.

If the reader faithfully completes each and every step along the way, at the end he or she will be fully prepared to last a minimum of three full months completely on their own with no outside assistance.

The Book Giveaway

A copy of  Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide has been reserved for one lucky reader.

To enter the giveaway, you need to utilize the Rafflecopter form below.  There are a couple of options 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

Something I failed to mention is that Jim Cobb has been a survivalist for years, long before the term “Prepper” was coined and long before being prepared became a mainstream avocation.  He is a prolific writer who is well-regarded by his peers.  When it comes to preparedness, when Jim speaks, I listen.

I hope you will enter the giveaway to win your own copy of Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide!

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!

If you enjoyed this article, consider voting for me daily at Top Prepper Websites!  In addition, SUBSCRIBE to email updates and receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-book The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Spotlight Item:  Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide: Food, Shelter, Security, Off-the-Grid Power and More Life-Saving Strategies for Self-Sufficient Living


The preparation you make for a hurricane, earthquake or other short-term disaster will not keep you alive in the event of widespread social collapse caused by pandemic, failure of the grid or other long-term crises.

Government pamphlets and other prepping books tell you how to hold out through an emergency until services are restored. This book teaches you how to survive when nothing returns to normal for weeks, months or even years, including:

•Practical water collection for drinking and hygiene
•Storing, growing, hunting and foraging for food
•First aid and medical treatments when there’s no doctor
•Techniques and tactics for fortifying and defending your home
•Community-building strategies for creating a new society

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.    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 Practical 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



Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!


Now Available in Print!  Plus, the eBook is only 99 cents!

No list of books would be complete without my own book, The Prepper’s Guide to Food Storage.


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.   It is based on my own tried and true experience as someone who has learned to live the preparedness lifestyle by approaching emergency preparedness and planning in a systematic, step-by-step manner.

Whether you simply want to prepare for natural disasters or whether you believe the world is headed toward a major food crisis, this book is for you. It covers basic tips and techniques you can use to stock your food storage pantry so that you can be assured that your family will have food to eat, no matter what.

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113 Responses to “Summer 2014 Book Festival: Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide”

  1. I have lots of coffee and sugar to barter…among other things. But coffee is going to be quiet important at some point…

    • I thought about going into a world where coffee would be bad to not available and I had to wean myself off three years ago, it was hard after being a three cups a day person. The headaches were bad, and you will get over it–slowly.

  2. Top items I see are #1- fresh clean potable water #2 – fresh healthy food
    With either you can trade for almost anything else.

  3. Both these books sound worthwhile to buy. I like the idea of the countdown book, think it would give me a guideline to follow.

    • I wish you would forget facebook! I can’t register for facebook, which is fine, I don’t like them anyway…anything you put on there, they throw it right in the street for the whole world to see! I was on it, they sent me an email saying if I didn’t give them my phone number, I would be banned….they didn’t NEED my phone number and I told them so…they banned me….they are crooks in my humble opinion….there…and no…I don’t feel better 😉

    • I am sorry you have a bad experience with Facebook. For a blogger, though, FB represents an important medium for building traffic, increasing SEO, and proving to advertisers we are worthy. And in truth, it is the advertisers that allow bloggers to maintain free access to their websites. By that I mean sites that do not require a subscription.

      As you have hopefully seen, FB is not a requirement to entire Backdoor Survival giveaways.

  4. I’m storing 22 shells and shotgun shells presently and am looking forward to reading what others are storing for ideas! Thanks and happy Labor Day

  5. I have Mr. Cobb’s latest book, “Countdown to Preparedness.” Very well written and well worth the read. For those that have the more furry family members, he does not leave them out or skim quickly over the topic. There are so many good items to use for barter, its hard to narrow down to just one. We don’t drink and we don’t smoke, so we would probably stock up on extra alcohol – vodka and whiskey. With no way to rotate out the cigarettes, they would go stale on the shelf. Alcohol has other uses besides drinking so that would be the item we would pick. A second would be all the leftover disposable diapers and pull ups, providing I can ever get our youngest to stop being stubborn and potty train!

  6. I agree with Amanda D on the alcohol. I have plenty because you can trade it for anything, and it has so many uses. I have tobacco seeds to be able to grow “fresh”. The important things I have stored to barter with are plenty of beans and rice. I am my brother’s keeper, but I don’t have to keep him with the most tasty food.

  7. My choice for a #1 barter item would be veggie seeds/starter plants. I think most people would want some way to grow their own food if they needed to.

  8. I think it really depends on the particular shtf scenario. Obviously, water – food – ammo, are the go to items. Seeds for planting would be good!

  9. I started storing extra alcohol and ammo but after thinking about it I decided that those were not safe barter items, especially in combination. Now I store extra rice (because of it’s price and shelf life) and coffee. I would, however, prefer to barter my skills, they take only time and practice, with no worries how to store them.

  10. Main barter items so far are: small bottles of alcohol, hotel soaps and shampoos, toothbrushes and paste, toilet paper, flashlights, lighters and most recently fish antibiotics. It’s a never ending job preparing!

  11. I store what I feel are very important and going to be very sought after. I have lots and lots of fishing line and hooks. I believe in the saying “Give a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he eats forever.” I think hooks and lines for fishing will be extremely valuable as barter items.

  12. I have extra water purification devices, that would be top barter item I think, probably need to buy more, water is first. I also have quite a bit of TP, cheap and good barter item. I starting to store seeds from things I eat, cheap way to replenish and good barter item as well. Just now learning abt best way to do this.

  13. What I am missing most, is close neighbors that are also prepping or thinking about what to do in an emergency. I am starting up CERT, but slow going in the backwoods. Like minded people will be hard to come by.

  14. I think there are a lot of people with chronic pain and post SHTF there could be more with injuries and such…so I think that some sort of pain meds aleve, tylenol and such would be good. If you are familiar with Maslow’s hierarchy then you know that if someone is in pain, they dont care about food, water, shelter,coffee or basically anything else but relieving the pain. not that i would take advantage, but they would be likely to trade just about anything to get relief from pain. on a similar way of thinking..asthma meds would be in high demand becase that could be life threatening. now that i think about it.. does anybody know if the average person can get ahold of something like epipens without an Rx?

    • Epi pens are very expensive (I have heard $60 and googling have found as high as $150 for ONE!) and have a very short shelf life. They would not be a good barter item, unless you grab them at the very beginning of something that is definitely happening, and you’d be much better off spending the $60-150 on other things.

    • There is no way to buy epipens without an Rx in here the US. You would have to order online from another county and they are expensive $100+

  15. Meds and general first aid. That will always be needed. Also there will always be people looking to have some type of frippery like jewelry or a piece of lace, silk etc. If you happen to have some on hand there might be someone out there looking to barter something important for a bit of prettiness to have.

  16. I’m just getting started, so the basics of food and water, flashlights, radio, something to cook on, things like that would be a good place to concentrate for me.

  17. I agree that alcohol is going to be the one thing anyone can barter, but I am stocking up on things no one else might think of. Like aspirin, Tylenol, diapers, drink packets, little luxuries that most people won’t stock. I think someone with a headache would rather trade some food for Tylenol, or a mom would trade something for diapers or a drink packet to make water taste better for their kids. Alcohol is a great idea, but most people are not going to be looking for their next drink, they’re going to be looking for the little things that make life better. Oh, and Band-Aids too!

  18. I think toilet paper would be a goods barter item. It’s something that we tend to overlook but may not want to be without.

  19. Not entering the contest, I bought this book and I highly recommend it! It’s broken down into nice do-able activities. I really like the ‘add to your preps’ in each chapter which says something like buy 2 cans of soup, 1 can of meat etc. You’re adding a few cans to your grocery cart each week and they add up!

    Btw – barter alcohol or medical supplies, aspirin, peroxide etc.

  20. I think food would be the best barter tool – people would give just about anything if they are hungry enough. Know how to hunt! Fish! Trap! Forage! Grow your own!

    • Cigarette papers and rollers would be better and cans of Bull Durham, might last longer unless you are keeping the cigarettes in a root cellar or the fridge.

    • I’m a smoker so i know those will be a top item but im not sure hubby would give up any of our stash! lol oh and regardless if it’s just the tobacco or the packs– they have to be kept in in semi moist to dry area out of the light — tobacco has lil critters that look like worms when hatched that will eat at the paper i keep ours in a humidor

  21. The one item I would not consider for barter is ammo. If word gets around that you are willing to trade bullets for things you want what on earth makes you think that someone else won’t decide they’d be better off with your bullets and take or try to take or otherwise make your life miserable trying to take your ammo away from you. I would stick with less dangerous barter material like coffee or anything that cannot be used to kill you!

  22. We have been loading up on salt, sugar and coffee for barter. Glad for the other comments, too! Think we will add more first aid items, aspirin, Tylenol, and alcohol.

    • Linda, how about cocoa powder which won’t melt in a grid down time, unless you know you’ll have “juice” when the lights don’t work. Chocolate is a better item I would trade for but what size do you have it in?

  23. I think personal skills such as carpentry, emt, sewing and things like these would be the best. You don’t have to stock anything but your tools. Use the money for stocking to buy what you need.

  24. My best friend had me stock up on sea salt of all types of sea salt, the Irish Celtic is one that a nutritionist checked out in a lab and came back that it is mineral rich too! I have some Knob Creek, wine, and tequila stored no beer, yes we drink it before it goes skunky, also for everyone we have ALTOIDS! Costco item, large tins. We are trying to keep herbal medicines and bags boxes of baking soda for trade, it has many uses. Ammo, is not something I would care to discuss in bad times, but we will have extra bushcraft knives and some extra EDC knives for the right item(s) read Jim’s 52 weeks book and it’s helpful,thanks.

  25. This sounds like a book that can aid in moving my lovely wife to a more prepared state of mind. I don’t think she will fully come over to my side, but would welcome a more favorable view from her.

  26. I think booze, coffee & sugar. Cigarettes (I don’t smoke) would be a good one too but I won’t be storing them.

  27. I’m storing pain meds, small bottles of alcohol and small hotel sized hygiene items for barter. Never ammo – they may turn around and use it on me!

  28. I think the number one barter item would be medical supplies. Thanks to you, I have recently become very interested in the many uses of essential oils. I plan to begin making up the various salves you write about. I also wanted to thank you for the great recommendations on books. I have enjoyed everyone of your book festival recommendations. You should definitely be the voted as the “Top Prepper Site”. Thank you for all the wonderful advice!

  29. I would say the top barter item for a SHTF scenario would be hygiene products. Unless desperate, I would not give up any food, water, first aid supplies, pet food and fuel.

  30. I’d store up spices for barter. There’s probably not going to be a lot of vanilla beans or cinnamon or a lot of other eastern spices available in a shtf scenario. I also agree with storing heirloom seeds and basic over he counter meds.

  31. A top barter item would to be able to teach a survival task, fishing, trapping, raising animals, gardening, water filtration, etc. Stuff is good but knowledge trumps stuff and community trumps knowledge!

  32. I’m with Jim Cobb. Long term prepping makes sense OR possible multiple events hitting together or close together, not allowing for recovery, or possible a long term grid down situation. Aside from knowing where to find multiple sources of water for when my stores run low. I have stored cocoa powder, salt (it’s a mineral our bodies need) and grain seeds so grains can be planted in season to provide for future foods. Also learning how to do many thing if/when electrics don’t work. My knowledge and skills will be bartered and taught which is my reason for being in a community.

  33. I think food, which is used by everyone. I would be very reluctant to barter away ammunition, and things like alcohol or tobacco would only have a subset of folks interested in them.

  34. I think the top bartering item would be bleach and water purifiers.
    Water is vitally important and people need a way to purify it.

  35. Definately toliet paper! Maybe bar soap or toothpaste. Everyone concentrates on food & water which are the 1st priority; but after a while they will dream about toliet paper, want to clean up & brush their teeth to feel good again even though times are tough.

  36. Making our own wine to barter with now as well as my skills in blacksmithing and gun repair. I’m not waiting for bad times to start bartering, I’m practicing now and getting following to always be ready.

    • oooo Blacksmithing and gun repair will be so valuable! I do like that you’re practicing now. I hope to find someone with your skills near me. Not many are able to do those almost forgotten skills like blacksmithing.

  37. What do you consider a top barter item in a SHTF scenario?

    1. booze– people are gonna hit that first
    2. food– people dont prep right
    3. footwear

  38. I’ve just been wondering…what percentage of the population do you all think is prepared for a real SHTF situation? Looking at preper sites I can almost dilude myself into believing that a good portion of the population is, but then i look around me in real life and i can say that NOT ONE of my neighbors, friends, relatives, co-workers…anybody believes in preping for anything more than maybe a few day power out or water out situation. It almost makes me fearful to let anybody know that I have any provisions. I have babies to think about providing for and if everybody knows that i have stuff, then i may have to turn away or harm somebody i know personally or put my little ones in danger of doing without. I think many of you are more experienced preppers, and I would REALLY appreciate any two cents that you might want to chime in.

    • What ever the percentage, I imagine it’s low. I doing several scenarios and going over them in my head and doing some role playing. This will help if/when disaster happens. It needs to that you would automatically quick choose/decide because when emotions come into the mix, or after when you have some down time and realize what’s happened, you’re going to have to allow the emotions to flood so you can release them.
      Begin now to talk to friends, neighbors and meet people around you to explore who may have an interest or just be willing to talk to you about a ‘what if’. Follow your gut instincts. As a mother, that intuition will speak loudly because as you say, you’re protecting your wee ones. 🙂
      Just as you do with physical prepping, make talking and finding like minded people part of your prepping.

    • Dee-thank you very much for taking the time to share some wisdom with me. I will try what you suggest about role playing mentally, because I believe i know in my heart what i would do…i just dont know if i would be prepared for the emotional flood you mentioned afterward. Part of me wants to talk to some people about getting themselves more prepared, but like i said fear tends to get in the way. My fear is that they wont listen and then when the SHTF their minds might remember my words and they will come seeking for me to support them too. How do can you know if enough is enough food/water. If i have a whole year stocked for my immediate family can i feel safe stocking extras to give away? or will the end of the year come and go and normal life has not returned and my supply is gone? as i write these words, i feel like a greedy paranoid nut, but i know i’m just a normal mom who couldnt bear to watch her kids go hungry or thirsty. thanks again

    • Learner, I got notice of your reply but can’t find it on here. So here’s my answer. I read a book (there is a movie too)called Dune. In it, the young boy is taught, “Fear is a mind killer.” I have found that to be true. Consider what anxiety and panic do. For that matter, consider that your fear is killing any action for you to do something that somewhere inside you know you need to do. Not just for you but for your family too. So mentally use a volume control and turn down that fear so it’s there enough to motivate you as it does so many of our great orators or comedians….then go out and begin by saying, “HI”

    • Dee, Thanks again. I’ll look into that book/movie. i really do appreciat you taking the time to share your encouraging words with me.

    • Sadly, some of the larger prepper sites are not run by preppers but by internet marketers who are in it for the money. Check the “about” pages. Many are anonymous and if you do a WHOIS, you will find the internet marketer who is listed as the site owner is also involved in many get-rich-quick on the internet schemes.

      This really hurts a lot of the newer prepping sites so I try to help them (the newer, small sites) as much as I can.

    • Learner. There are 15 million Mormons world wide. I don’t know how many are in the states, but they have all been advised for years to have a years supply of food. I would think they could be classified as ‘preppers’.
      It has been said that if you try to dig a hole in a mountain in Utah, you will hit someone’s food storage.

    • John R. your post really make me chuckle. I didnt know that about the mormons but i guess if it is pretty common knowledge then maybe a lot of desperados looking to hijack someones stash will head that way…maybe that’s why i keep seeing on prepper’s lists to have shovels for when SHTF. lol thanks

    • LOL I think it would have to be a pretty sturdy shovel to dig in most of those mountains in Utah since most are granite. Then again, it might depend on which side of the mountains, remember erosion and the west side gets that big time when the wind and storms hit. lol Also, like most other people, some Mormons don’t listen to their leaders. 😉 So pick carefully. 🙂

  39. We have alcohol for barter…don’t drink that much (and would be too afraid to ever be less than optimally aware), but could use it to trade.

  40. Love all the book suggestions. How I’m prepping: 1 year of food in storage (using on a daily basis to to keep it fresh, know what I want to continue to store, and to have experience using when needed), in home aquaculture set up (serve as a 170 gallon water storage unit, fish factory and to grow vegetables), seed saving (non gmo heirlooms).

  41. There are so many things that would be good. I think it depends on what the situation is. My top choices would be ways to purify water or ways to obtain food such as ammo, seeds, traps and so on.

  42. Besides clean water, and food, I think the top barter products would be medicine. I had found one time on a website (cant remember which one) where a guy took a mylar bag, cut it up and using a flat iron, was able to put different meds, like immodium, benedryl etc. and seal them into little 1 dose packets to barter with.

  43. I think the ability to purify water, seeds for growing would be top bartering items along with the skills we have been practising.

  44. Being someone that has spring and fall allergies bad enough to go to the doctor for a steroid shot each season, I am adding a lot of Benadryl tablets, stocking up heavily on boxed and small packages of Kleenex tissues, looking for handkerchiefs and hitting up my family doc for extra refills here and there on inhalers. I know I could not function very well if I am so miserable from seasonal allergies. The sneezing and coughing alone would give away my position if I had to hide. In addition to the seasonal allergies I get into problems with poison ivy, penicillin family medications and now anything that has to do with seafood. Research alternatives if you have a lot of allergy issues and medication is not available or you have run out. Check out the travel and sample items when they are at a reasonable price to use for bartering. Food, toilet paper,coffee, tea, sugar, seeds, matches, candles, alcohol and first aid items are great for bartering.

  45. We would most like to be able to barter some skill that we have for something that we would need. We would never barter ammo or alcohol because we would feel the person might come back for more, and not be interested in bartering for it! I would have a hard time bartering some items that I have stored up for fear that we might end up needing them ourselves, especially if the situation seemed to be very long term in nature.

  46. I knit and crochet along with sewing….eventually everyone would need warm clothes and quilts, not to mention socks mittens gloves and sweaters! I believe that I could barter these skills for many things if need be!

  47. I think that the top barter items will change the longer the situation continues. Food, water, TP. Alcohol. Eventually things like salt for those that hunt to preserve and season food, but salt won’t be useful in the beginning!

  48. Medication; pain killers, antibiotics, allergy and blood pressure. You can also throw in there Xanax and Ritalin. I would barter with these in an extreme situation. Okay add cigarettes and alcohol. The last two always rule in good times and bad. I believe there is mutual fund on the stock market called vice. Gambling, cigarettes and alcohol.

  49. I would think something like toilet paper, or garbage bags (which could be used to help keep you dry, collect garbage, keep food dry), or a can opener.

  50. I have this book and have read much of it. Overall, the thing that interested me most is the photo of the knife on the front cover. Frankly, that photo is the biggest reason I bought this book and it remains the best thing about the book IMO. Can any of you identify this knife? The section of the book that discusses knives lists several specific models but none match one on the cover. The shape of this knife intrigues me greatly as the gracefully curved blade seems it would be useful for many purposes.

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