A lot of people, ourselves included, have noted that financing a business in the wake of the freewheeling 1980s demands different talents -- a stronger stomach, for one. More imagination, too. A business owner also needs to know his options, and when those options have run out, he needs to tap others.

If you're looking for ways to raise money, you might want to check out Guerrilla Financing, by Bruce Jan Blechman and Jay Conrad Levinson (Houghton Mifflin, 1991). The book is crammed with useful information and suggestions on where to look for relatively small sums, as well as advice on how to roll with the punches. Even though Guerrilla Financing wades into technical stuff, it's ideal for browsing: chapters are carved into bite-size sections with headings that guide you along. Some sample headings: "What not to include in a financing plan," "What if you have little collateral and weak credit," and "How to find an aggressive banker."

You might also seek out another recent title, Surviving the Credit Crunch of the '90s, by Lance H. Woeltjen and Thomas B. Sanders (Chilton Book Co., 1991). This one is less comprehensive and less down-to-earth; even so, it presents a number of useful techniques for controlling cash, finding investors, and valuing your business. -- Bruce G. Posner