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An Ebook Publishing Failure Story: My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon This Year

I decided to start this online journal about my goal to write and have published 50 ebooks on Amazon by December 31, 2011 because, quite frankly, I’m way behind schedule and I need a kick in the pants. And, there’s nothing like declaring your goals publicly – especially your lumps along the way (ie, your failures) – to keep you on track.

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Update 2017: The year was 2011, and I was hell bent on uploading 50 ebooks to Amazon. Why? Because the year before, after going over my income, I realized that over half of it came from my self-publishing projects (ebooks and e-courses). So, I decided to “up the ante” so to speak. As a freelance writer, I didn’t want to be tied to one stream of income.

If there is one thing I’ve learned over my many years of freelancing (since 1993), it’s that diversification is always good. And in 2011, self-publishing was still new-ish.

I’d been self-publishing ebooks since 2002; although the term wasn’t even a blip on the radar back then. We just called it “publishing your own book.” And I didn’t even look at mine as “books.” They were just “information” collated as pdf files that I released to get out to a hungry audience.

2 Things I Realize Looking Back

Now, looking back six years later, two things stand out:

(i) I’m glad I didn’t know how crazy this goal was. I would never attempt it today because I know what goes into self-publishing a sellable book. And …

(ii) I’m glad I accepted and dug into self-publishing early. I built a name for myself in the self-publishing industry; made some good money; and turned it into my best income stream as a writer.

And, I even landed a book deal from a traditional publisher. Talk about irony!

Now, if I never land another freelance writing job, I can fully support myself.

That’s allowed me to raise my rates — significantly — as a freelance writer; to branch out into e-course development; and have total control over my income — again, without relying on freelance writing clients.

With all of that being said, following is how this series started.

It’s 2011, and My Goal Is to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon

Note: See all posts in this ebook writing series at the end of this post. Get the ebook that came out of this series: SELLING EBOOKS ONLINE: How I Published 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year – And You Can Too!

Why Am I So Behind in Writing and Publishing My Ebooks

Well, there are several reasons. None of them are excuses; they’re just . . . reasons.

My Personal Life: Quite frankly, it’s sucked for a while now and it got the better of me in the spring of this year. I wasn’t able to concentrate and be super-focused like I usually am.

I’m a Type A personality. This means I tend to give my all to everything – personally and professionally. And, when it doesn’t go my way (especially personally), it can f*** me up pretty badly – especially because I didn’t see it coming.

So, that took me off track for a bit and I’m just now recovering – and finding my mojo again.

Travelling: While living the “international freelance writing life” is nice, it’s kind of disconcerting. I’m back and forth to Jamaica, and have been feeling out of sorts lately. Like:

“Is that extra computer battery here, or did I leave it at my house in Jamaica?” and

“Where are those – my favorite – running shorts? Ah crap, I left them in Atlanta!” or

“Why can’t I access this site from Jamaica? Arrggghhh!”

While on the face of it little things like this are no big deal – I’m a creature of habit (the older I get, the more I think I’m developing a bit of OCD). I like to have things in their place, working the way they’re supposed to, and nothing out of sorts at all times. If something is “off,” it throws me off. So little things have been adding up . . . and creating a big headache for me.

Work Problems: Over the past two months I’ve had a spate of problems – namely, my laptop died. I lost six months of work. It was my own fault because I had a backup in place, but just didn’t do my part and save the darned files!

Uggghhh – I could literally puke at my folly!

I’m an optimist by nature, so tend to think that, “This won’t happen to me.” Which is very stupid considering I got a nasty virus in December that cost me over $500 to get fixed. Six months later (this month), I got another one that crashed my whole system – which I hadn’t backed up since December.

I know, I know. STUPID!

And, it couldn’t be fixed; so no recovered files — and I had to buy a whole new computer (which I’m loving!). But, there went six month’s worth of personal photos and video, not to mention work files (my last two published ebooks namely, as well as one I had 90% completed that I have to now rewrite). Now I’m so paranoid that I back up stuff even when I’m going across the hall to the bathroom.

Some other stuff has happened too professionally that’s just put a black cloud over everything.

For a couple of weeks there, it was all I could do to log on. I just wanted to lay in bed with the covers over my head I was so depressed (which is TOTALLY unlike me).

The Sun is Shining Again — I’m Gonna be an Ebook Writing Fool!

coverNow, I’m finally coming out of my personal and professional funk. I feel inspired again and will be working my tail off to make my ebook writing and publishing goal. The writing starts tomorrow.

I’ll be doing regular updates on my progress – this is more for me than anything else.

If you want to chime in with your ebook writing (or other professional) successes and failures, I’d welcome it. Share in the comments section below. And, here’s to always getting back up, dusting yourself off and getting going again!

Have a great weekend,
Yuwanda

Listing of All Posts in This Series

A Freelance Writer’s Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part I

A Freelance Writer’s Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part II

A Freelance Writer’s Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part III

A Freelance Writer’s Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part IV

A Freelance Writer’s Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part V

Writing and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part VI

Writing and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part VII

Writing and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part VIII

Writing and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part IX

Writing and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part X

Writing and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part XI

Writing and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part XII

Writing
and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part XIII

Writing and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part XIV

Writing and Selling Ebooks Online: Diary of My Quest to Publish 50 Ebooks on Amazon in One Year, Part XV (Final post in series)

P.S.: Get The Ultimate Self-Publishing Package: 4 Ebooks. 1 Low Price.

ebook-publishing-packIf you are courageous, hard-working and self-motivated, you really can make a lot of money selling ebooks online (I’m proof of this) – if you don’t forget that last ingredient – perseverance.

Share Your Ebook Selling Tips and Questions?

Have any ebook selling tips to share? Have a question about how to make money selling ebooks online? Share in the comments section below.

P.P.S.: Serious about Starting a Self-Publishing Career? Then You Need a Website/Blog. Learn why and how to start one.

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    Comments

    1. Kimberly says:

      I’ve had a few business ventures that didn’t go as planned and so I know a little bit about failure. Yes, I was in a funk about them both, and now I’m much happier with the path I’m pursuing now. I’m failing forward much better now.

      • Ohhh Kimberly, boy do I know about “failing forward.” I stopped getting business cards printed years ago, b/c my friends would ask, “And what business is this now?” 🙂

        The funny thing is, when you’re going thru the process, it’s frustrating, aggravating and just downright difficult. But, once you come out on the other side (where I am now), you look back and are grateful. At least I am.

        So, while I was down for the count for a minute, I’m fully recharged and refocused.

        Thanks, as always for dropping by and lending your thoughts to the discussion.

        Best,
        Yuwanda

    2. Thanks for the the inspiration Kel, and for the packing tip. I think I’m gonna take you up on that.

      Not only did I leave my favorite running shorts in Jamaica, I left my iPod too! Ugghhh!

      Luckily, I found a brand new one that a friend had given me for Christmas like 5 or 6 yrs ago. I’d never even fully unwrapped it. I loaded that sucker up with new music and am a happy camper again.

      So yeah, things ARE turning around. Thanks for the encouragement; just what I needed!

    3. Definitely not a “failure,” Yuwanda! The real world is chock-full of set-backs and hurdles; you will, as Walt Disney exhorted- “Keep moving forward!” Failing is the result of not learning from the bumps and tumbles of pursuing goals.

      Perhaps making a one-page “Stuff for Jamaica” and a “Stuff for Hot’lanta” packing list will ensure you have the favs and spares when you want/need them?

      Continued successes! Kel