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What I Learned From Writing a Book

It’s been a really crazy week for me.  Among other things, I published my first ebook on Monday.  It was a pretty huge accomplishment for me and people have been extremely nice with their feedback.

I learned a ton in the process, and I know some of you have the desire to ship a book of your own.  Here’s what I can give you insight on…

It takes way longer than you think

The majority of the content contained in the book was revised and updated from previous blog posts.  A few bonus chapters were brand new content.  But I didn’t copy-paste the previous content, I literally re-wrote it so I could revise it live.

As blog posts, the content took somewhere around a week and a half to put out.  As a book, it took at least twice as long to re-write and format.  Then there was the new content to add, getting outside editing assistance, and doing a final read of it myself and editing again before putting it out.

It’s close to a 50-page ebook, and as a side thing, it took me a few months.  I’m sure if it had been the top priority of my time I could’ve ripped it out faster, but it wasn’t, and it took quite a bit more time and effort than I anticipated.

People are interested in what you teach

Way more people pre-ordered and downloaded the book than I expected.  Before the books shipped I had about 93 pre-orders, which was almost 5x what I expected.

If you’re a big-time author or someone with a decent online following, that number isn’t huge.  But for me, it was completely unexpected.

I also learned that people who read through the previous content, and people who are too advanced for the book were both still interested.  Some people wanted an introduction to Lua, others wanted to support me, and others just wanted a copy.

The best part though is all of the people I’d never heard of or met who downloaded the book.  There were lots of nice messages thanking me because people are scared to pick up coding, and I decided to provide a free and simple resource to start.  That’s super awesome.

The internet knows no bounds

Thanks to all of you, I spent a night setting up replies to pre-orders and every few minutes commenting about the exotic (to me) places my book was sent to.

UK, Morroco, Spain, Italy, France, Romania, Mexico, China, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Norway, Austria, and more were represented.  My little .pdf file is way more well traveled than I am!

Literally, anyone can do this

I’m a fairly average American guy.  I have a job that isn’t blogging or programming related.  I have a little bit of knowledge and a copy of Microsoft Publisher.

That’s all I used, and I wrote a small book.

If you have a computer, a publishing application, a little bit of knowledge, and the drive to finish – you can do this too.

Effort attains credibility

My wife pointed something out to me last night.

Though I began my quest for a college degree in Computer Science, I finished in Theatre.  I’ve kept up programming on the side, but only heavily dug in trying to change my career path to be programming related at the end of 2016.

I’ve written blogs, released software, manage a Slack channel, and now have put out a book.

By doing that I’ve had multiple people and companies reach out to me to at least say I’m doing fantastic work.  Some of them have also inquired about working with me.

I’m literally a professional audio programmer now.  What’s better is that it’s a blast!

You put in the effort and keep putting the effort in at a sustainable pace, and credibility will come over time.  Just make sure you have things to show for your effort!

Thanks

Huge thanks to all of you who read these posts, and who have downloaded the book or other software.  I’m super thankful for all of your support and feedback.  I hope you’ll share the awesome things you complete with me too!


Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.