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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Cashing in On Your Inventions, 2nd Edition (Idiot's Guides) Paperback – June 1, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Richard Levy is a generous guy...shares his secrets here for developing and exploiting (in the best sense of the word) one's creative endeavors. The author's generosity and delight is infectious as he guides the reader through the steps required to protect one's rights while simultaneously seeking financing, recognition, and other support. Beyond his words of wisdom, the sagacious inventor provides an array of forms and other tools so that neophytes needn't reinvent the wheel when they aspire to monetize their inspirations."
-Richard Pachter, The Miami Herald

"Inventing is easy if your brain is wired that way. Developing inventions into real products also isn't rocket science if you know how. Converting inventions into licenses that'll turn into real products, protecting your work, making the cash register ring... now that's the hard part. No one is better at doing all of these things than Richard Levy whose track record for inventing and licensing successful toys and games is a mile long. What's more, he has an uncanny knack for describing all facets of the whole process in books that really teach. This current one is no exception. Go get it."
-Ralph H. Baer, father of the console video game industry, inventor of SIMON and many other toys and games, the 2010 Inductee in the Inventor's Hall of Fame, and the 2004 Winner of the National Medal of Technology. He is president of R.H. Baer Consultants.

About the Author

Richard C. Levy, simply put, is a marketing genius with a flair for invention. In the past twenty years, he has licensed over 125 products including Furby®, and the best-selling game “Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus.” Richard holds more than 30 patents. This is his twelfth book. He was profiled on Discovery Channel’s Invention series, and in interviews with The New York Times, and The Washington Post. An MIT Inventor-of-the-Week, Richard has spoken at Wharton’s Entrepreneurship Conference, IBM, and the USPTO’s Independent Inventors Conference, among other engagements. His products have generated over $1 billion in combined retail sales.

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Product Details

  • Series: Idiot's Guides
  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: ALPHA; 2 edition (June 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 161564007X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1615640072
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #625,891 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Richard C. Levy, president, Richard C. Levy & Associates, LLC, specializes in collaborative invention, product development, design and licensing original concepts. In business for more than for 37 years, RCL&A's licensed products include one of the best-known and successful toys of all time, Furby (Hasbro), the interactive, animatronic creature that has sold more than 70 million units globally.

Among his many board games are Adverteasing (Cadaco/PSI), Men are From Mars, Women are From Venus (Mattel) and Chicken Soup for the Soul (Cardinal), the latter two based upon best-selling literary properties.

RCL&A's licensees range from Hasbro and Mattel to General Foods and P&G.

The critically acclaimed "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Cashing In on Your Inventions" (2nd Edition) and "The Toy and Game Inventor's Handbook" (3nd Edition) are Richard's eleventh and twelfth books, respectively. A member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors his articles have appeared in dozens of publications including the Sunday newspaper supplement, Parade.

Richard served two consecutive terms on the board of directors of Intellectual Property Owners. He is listed in Who's Who in Entertainment, has been profiled by Kiplinger's Personal Finance, New York Times, Washington Post, Inventor's Digest, and Discovery Channel's "Invention" series. Richard received the Small Business Administration's Innovation Award.

He has lectured at the annual meeting of the Licensing Executives Society, National Inventor's Day, National Science Foundation's Conference on Industrial Science and Technological Innovation, IBM's Inventor Dinner, The Learning Annex (12 city tour), Wharton's Entrepreneurship Conference, the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business, Shidler College of Business at the University of Hawaii, Toy Industry Association seminars and USPTO events among other speeches.

Richard is married to Sheryl S. Levy, his soul mate and business partner, CFO of RCL&A, and co-inventor of many board games. The couple co-authored "Plane Talk: The Consumer Air Travel Guide". Their daughter, Bettie, is an executive in the music industry. Bettie invented her first board game, Here Comes the Bride, at age 6.

Toy Fair 2015 Interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cG_jH2PIHY

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

98 of 105 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 30, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
obviously, this guy makes money with his "inventions." although i wouldn't call him so much as an "inventor" as he is a highly successful marketing man. "inventor" of the Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus GAME!!! i mean, come on. this book has a few useful tidbits which are more or less common sense, but is mostly a lot of fluff--useless "interesting" facts hodge-podged together (probably by well paid research staff). also, the guy can't resist throwing in some boastful quasi-relevant stuff whenever he gets the chance, very annoying. as a first-timer who is trying to patent/market a piece of medical technological equipment, i found this book pretty useless. all in all, i thought the take-home message of the book can pretty much be summarized by "inventing and marketing is hard, but don't give up!!" sure the guy is rich and successful and a good marketer, but this book doesn't really help YOU to become rich, successful, and good at marketing. i'm not a bitter person, just someone trying to find good info to eventually become a successful person. i couldn't help but feel i'd been completely "had" after buying this book. the money for this book could have gone to better uses, other than making this guy more rich.
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34 of 35 people found the following review helpful By chere amore on November 4, 2004
Format: Paperback
I am happy for the author for his successes, but... he knew people that could help him get his foot in the door. He really has no knowledge of how to help you get YOUR foot in the door, other than general comments on what he would do if he had not known anyone. I am slightly unhappy with the book because the reason I bought it was to get my ideas developed into tangible products. This book will tell you valuable info on what the terms are and helpful info on making a decision about how to proceed, but not enough info about getting to the decision makers of a company. You will be more knowlegable if you buy this book, but you still have a ton of research ahead of you, as the author doesn't help you by providing names and address of key personnel that can help you get your idea or invention shown. Some of you may still feel like "idiots" when you're done reading this book. (?)
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Bruce Boatner on May 31, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I tried plowing through this book from beginning to end and found it much more valuable as a general reference than as a step-by-step guide. This is because every case is different and requires different treatment in handling the patents and trademarks involved. The author puts forth various alternative approaches to patenting, licensing, trademarking, manufacturing, etc. - each section is useful in ascertaining the best approach you should take in your own particular case.
There are many options that may not occur to someone like myself who is going through this process for the first time, so it is a big help to be mentored by someone who's been down that road before.
Bruce Boatner
Inventor, PEGASUS Wind Engine (TM)
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Linda Long on January 6, 2002
Format: Paperback
Inventor-marketer Richard C. Levy has written a one-of-a-kind, practical, easy-to-read and understand guide to licensing inventions. It is the
quintessential tool for inventors who want to attain the American dream. I have read the complete body of literature on invention marketing and this book is the best of the lot.
His forte is business practices, and every bit of advice is rooted in his own empirical experience. Nothing is theoretical. In particular, Levy's 10 Commandments of Negotiation are outstanding. And the licensing and option agreements will save me thousands of dollars in legal fees.
It is obvious that the author makes his living from royalties and not books and seminars. Most books in this genre are written by self-proclaimed inventors, invention marketing experts, and patent lawyers. Few of these people can point to success. The money they earn is from consultation fees, not royalties. Levy is a full time player whose success has been remarkable,
and it can be seen beginning with the cover photo depicting him with some of his licensed products.
If you want an added edge, read this book.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By jeff jones on January 10, 2002
Format: Paperback
Whether you are an inventor, aspiring inventor or want a remarkable insight into the art and science of inventing, this is a must read. I have worked with and among inventors for most of my career and yet this book is already dog eared, annotated and all marked up so I can easily reference its many gems. It is a fun and easy read and packed with information I find I use daily!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Mary Brown on June 2, 2010
Format: Paperback
I have bought many of Richard's books and have been inspired and informed by them all, in particular The Complete Idiot's Guide to Cashing In on Your Inventions. But the second edition of this work has two chapters that did not exist in the first edition. They cover the making of prototypes and mock-ups, product development milestones and manufacturing. Like the rest of the book, these chapters are based upon his firsthand experience, and careful and imaginative research. Richard writes with equal portions of wisdom, shrewd insight, humor and confidence. This book leaves all others in the category in the dust.

Mary Brown, Las Vegas, NV
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Bruce H. Dunson on June 7, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is an honest, insightful, incisive look at a tough business. I bought 15 copies for my robotics R&D team at TRACLabs. this book should be read by anyone with an idea and the American dream.

Bruce H. Dunson, Phd
Chairman of the Board
TRACLabs, Inc.
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