One Year As A Self-Published Author

Posted by Filip Ekberg on 30 Jul 2013

Filip Ekberg showing C# SmorgasbordWow -- It has already been one year since C# Smorgasbord was released and I've since then written about the way to getting it published here and tried to market it as much as possible. As for marketing I had raffles, did more user-group meetings and sent away some free books; even did some online marketing using Ads but that ended up costing me more money than it gave back.

Writing the book has been one of the best things that I've done in a long time. It helped me understand all the steps necessary to make a book and also forced me to dig deeper into some very interesting technical topics.

When I started writing the book I never imagined that I would sell more than 100 books; to my surprise though I sold much more than that.

Not having a publisher behind you that helps you with the marketing is hard, because everywhere you go you will be seen as an annoying self-promoter; I never understood why it's more okay to pay someone to market you than just market yourself. The way that I've been trying to market and strengthen my own brand is to do more technical posts, take more exciting and challenging tasks such as the Pluralsight course and more speaking engagements.

Some numbers

In total I've sold, raffled, given away around 1000 books in total. This includes digital copies and printed copies. Some have asked which channel generated the most sales so here's a breakdown of all the channels:

  • (Printed) Amazon or CreateSpace: 300 - 350
  • (Printed) Events, co-workers, online: ~200
  • (Digital) Kindle: ~200
  • (Digital) PayPal: 230 - 250
  • (Digital) Other: ~50

As you can see each channel is quite large and important for the sales. When the buyer gets a printed copy they're also allowed access to the DRM free digital bundle that includes PDF, ePUB and Mobi. I've created about 400 digital copy bundles, including the PayPal purchases and this is amazing. Fortunately for me I've automated the process as much as I want. When I started offering the digital bundle I had to fix the PDF, ePUB and Mobi by hand and this took about 10 minutes per book if everything went on smoothly. Now the process is automated and it takes about 1 minute to generate the bundle; however I still want to do the final quality check before I send it off to the buyer.

Would I do it again?

Many have asked me if I would want to write another book, I am not entirely sure. It was a great thing to do but doing online-courses is both more rewarding and it's easier to release more things in a rapid way; which I greatly enjoy.

You never know though, I love writing and expressing myself in text so I might write something in the future.

Let's celebrate together!

SmorgasbordOneYearOffferTo celebrate this together with you all, I'm lowering the price on the printed copy. As of July 30th, 2013, the printed version will be available for $14.99 (for a limited time only); FYI this almost doesn't give me any royalties at all ($4.81 per sale); it at least buys a beer for me and my fiancée in Australia and maybe also some bug-spray so that we can survive all the things that wants to kill us.

If you want to save a tree you can get the Kindle version or the digital version (€4.99)

Everyone that bought my book, everyone that read my blog, everyone that believed in me: Thank you all.

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