Are you curious about a one-year delay? I explained it in my first income report.
I had gloomy thoughts: “I’m no good; my book is a piece of crap…” I definitely parted with the dreams about bestsellers and fortune.
4th of June I sold 2 copies and the sales started to trickle.
11th of June I reached a whooping 7 copies sold and in my desperation I changed one of book’s categories from Self-Help-> Personal Transformation to Non-fiction-> Writing Guides
This category was almost abandoned (and still is). With my 7 sales this month I instantly occupied #2 place.
I was already working on my second book, “The Fitness Expert Next Door.” At the end of June it was almost ready (including proofreading and edition).
In a meantime I was writing my speed reading book. I finished the core of it on 9th of July. Mark that date.
The sales kept trickling.
My frustration was escalated because on 9th of June Stephen R. Covey’s guide “How to Develop Your Personal Mission Statement“ had been published. One of the reasons I decided to write my first book about mission statement creation was a relative lack of competition. And Covey’s book was selling a few dozens of copies every day!
It wasn’t fun at all.
Now I think it was this factor that kept my book afloat. It immediately was put into “other customers who bought this book also bought” section at competing book’s page. Every client who bought Covey’s guide saw also my book there and some of them bought it too.
21st I beaten my sales record: all, shiny, three sales in one day!
A peek into the future: this record hold till 7th of November.
The Income Report Breakdown
Income: Still zero.
I sold 29 copies of “Personal Mission Statement: Your Roadmap to Happiness.” My (future, vague and not materialized) income was $6.96. The good news was that it exceeded the cost of the cover in the first full month of the book’s life.
The bad news was that it was about 0.3% of my salary. I needed to write about 335 of similarly performing books to replace my 9 to 5 job’s income. Though luck!
I bought Aweber (affiliate link) service. It was only $1 for the first month. I wanted to get my mailing list ready for the launch of the second book.
I decided on Aweber, because it was the tool my mentor was using, so I had an access to some guidelines. I played around a bit with MailChimp, but my idea for a lead magnet – 100 perseverance quotes – was hard to implement in that soft. I was time constrained as usual, so I decided on the paid service just to get started faster.
I had also this silly idea that I will become a famous author sooner rather than later and I will exceed 2000 free subscribers in no time.
This was my first shift into an entrepreneurial mindset. This was paying for something to save the time on learning the tool of trade.
The other change was that I actually started doing something advised by the people who were ahead of me. Steve Scott said that mailing list is crucial for an indie author and I trusted him.
Well, my writing career didn’t proceed as planned (first book published = bestseller and fortune).
On the other hand I earned the first real money (read: my friends didn’t book all those copies) from my craft. It was an encouraging thought. I was also exposed to the idea that all I need is to repeat the process a few hundred times and I’ll be free. Much later I found this idea articulated in “Write. Publish. Repeat.” written by full time indie authors.
I decided my writing career was doable. Up till then I was convinced it was impossible.