Sunday, August 28, 2022

Self Publishing 100 Activity Books - A Huge Personal Goal

Self Publishing 100 Activity Books

Most of you who know me know that I have a goal of publishing 100 activity books.

Although this goal is ingrained in my being, I had no idea how to achieve that milestone.

My Newest Activity Book, Easy Sudoku for Adults, Helped Me Breakthrough Being Stuck - Let me Share How

Since 2019, I've published 14 activity books and 1 poetry book for a total of 15 books. That figure includes the newest book "Easy Sudoku for Adults." I've been stuck, and it is absolutely part of the process.

"The How Breakthrough"

I'm not one to wallow in problems. Without a doubt, finding solutions is part of who I am. In the case of finding a way to publish 100 activity books, I've had to think and think and think!

There are numerous 'how-to' videos on self-publishing; I've watched many of them. The guidance is out there; however, finding what works for you and how to implement suggestions is hard.

Most importantly, many how-to's include an automation process that isn't personal. 

Automating is essential, but not at the expense of your product's quality or personalization. Having said that, I've found an efficient way to automate WITH personalization.

So, in summary, work as hard as you can to automate and duplicate, but still, keep your books personal to you. In other words, don't just upload auto-generated activities or content, but do find a way to generate them so you can personalize them!

Never Compromise Quality

  • Finding programs that generate your puzzles (or whatever your project is) can help. However, they are not the answer to speed! 
  • To achieve volume, you need speed, but not at the expense of quality.
  • You still have to find a way to personalize your book. Make them a reflection of you!
  • Check the negative reviews on the competition of other books in your genre. Use those negative reviews as tips for your newly created book.
  • When creating a book, always think about fulfilling a need or solving a problem. 
  • Think about the consumer.
  • Take pride in your creations; after all, your name is attached to them.
  • Oh, that's another thing; I only use my given name, which keeps me honoring my own personal level of integrity.
  • Don't take negative reviews to heart. You will get them; they do hurt. But use those to improve your books! 
  • With Amazon self-publishing, I aim to stay within a three to five-star review rating on each book. So far, so good. 
  • I'm all over negative reviews! I read them, and if the complaint is legitimate, I modify my book based on that review ONLY if it makes sense!
  • Don't be afraid to completely revamp a book if you believe it will help your overall reviews to be positive. I re-did the layout of all 7 of my riddle books for both paperback and ebook versions! That project re-do took me three months!
Automating Includes Developing a Functioning, Duplicatable System
  • Find and use a word processing systems that allow for easy duplication for the next book in a series.
  • Develop consistent templates that can be used, reused, and modified.
For Those Who Don't Have Expensive Word Processing or Other Graphics Programs, Here's What I Use
  • I don't have the paid version of Microsoft Word, so I downloaded "Liberty Office" for free. I use those for my Riddle Books.
  • I use the free version of Canva for my Wordsearch and Sudoko books and probably all other activity books I have yet to create.
  • I create my own book title pages using the free version of Adobe, Adobe-Spark.
  • I use the free version of "Gimp" to change the DPI on my book covers to printable quality.
Create a Website That Will House All of Your Books
  • I plan to expand to other self-publishing companies. I'm only publishing on Amazon's KDP, but my long-term plan is to expand to other self-publishing services. I'm in the middle of learning more about that process. My brain hurts, lol. With your own website, you can direct all your marketing to your website so that when you do expand to other self-publishing companies, you can simply add those options directly to your website. 
  • I rarely ever direct link to Amazon when marketing my books. I don't like having links out there that could potentially change! For that reason, I link to my website.
  • Decide upon a navigation system on your website that makes sense with the books you are creating. I have created a menu on my website that features; Riddles, Answers, Wordsearch Books, and Sudoku Books. I can expand that as I make more books. 
  • When you're creating your site, give thought to your planned growth.
My Final Tip for Today:

You HAVE TO LOVE what you're doing. If you don't, doing the work necessary to achieve any goals is challenging.

I've been stuck along the way, and it's very frustrating. So frustrating that I questioned myself about my goals. But I've long since realized that my goals are real and attainable. 

The biggest tips I can offer anyone taking on a project/passion like this are:
  1. Don't quit.
  2. Keep going.
  3. Take breaks.
  4. Develop duplicatable systems.
  5. Be willing to learn from your own mistakes.
  6. Be ready to make changes.
  7. Take breaks when you're fed up.
  8. Celebrate every book you publish.
  9. Don't let that look of doubt on the face of others affect you in any way.
  10. Monitor the sales activity for the books in your genre.
  11. Keyword research every book you create.
  12. Make sure your goal is what you want.
  13. Visualize where you want to be in a year.
  14. And as my friend Margaret said to me once, "Trust Yourself." I have carried that piece of advice with me for years. Thank you, my friend.
Introducing My 15th Activity Book - Easy Sudoku for Adults




Additional Self-Publishing Articles:

  1. Basic Tips for the Newbie Self-Publisher
  2. Matte or Glossy Book Covers
  3. Confessions of a Newbie Self-Publisher
  4. 5 Helpful Self-Publishing Tools
  5. 3 Tips for a Newbie Self-Publisher
  6. How to Get Started on Your First eBook
  7. 5 Handy FREE Tools for Self-Publishing





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14 comments:

  1. Finding solutions to problems is a theme I've used throughout my child-raising years and even with my children as adults. People get discouraged when something they want doesn't work out. But I've always reminded them that there is a reason something didn't work and that a better opportunity or resolution is waiting for them. So I totally agree with your philosophy of your "How Breakthrough". Well done with your accomplishments to date and best of luck in reaching your goal. I know you will. :)

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  2. Barbara, First of all congratulations on your accomplishments, it seems that you have found the path to your success. Good luck on reaching your goal, we are all looking forward to it. Your biggest tips are a true inspiration to living life.

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  3. All of your books have been so creative and unique! I love the ones that I have. The riddle books have served as a wonderful way for our family & friends to enjoy our holiday gatherings by using them to play games. For my own personal fun, I have very much enjoyed the word search book. Did you know Sudoku is one of my favorite pastimes? I find the puzzles a nice way to engage my brain when I need downtime from physical work or away from the computer. I see another "Barbara" book in my near future!

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  4. Barbara, I am so incredibly proud of you for your steadfast commitment to achieving this extremely ambitious personal goal and the fantastic, positive, practical and proactive attitude that is helping you achieve it! I am so grateful to have you in my life and honored that my advice to trust yourself has resonated so positively with you. People say “There’s nothing you can’t do if you put your mind to it,” but for an ambitious goal like yours, it also takes putting your heart and soul into it and refusing to let fear, doubt, or any other obstacles prevent you from achieving what you want. You are a remarkable inspiration, my friend!

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    Replies
    1. you are that inspiration to me as well, thank you for your constant support <3

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  5. You are very talented and inspirational in how you have fulfilled your goals and creations. I really admire how you have set forward your ambitions, met challenges and found solutions. I love your tips for taking on a project and many of them can apply to many other life challenges as well. Your riddles and word searches are great gift ideas for so many people to enjoy and I wish you every success and happiness going forward.

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  6. Wow Barbara, you continue to amaze me with your prolific writing and publishing. I'm sure this one will be a hit with many people! I hope you continue to gain momentum in all the undertakings you do. Continued success to you!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Olivia. I'm lucky to be surrounded by a lot of talented co-writers here.

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  7. I have no doubt you will exceed your goals. I so respect your determination, your creativity, your vision, your integrity, and your spirit. It takes what it takes (in terms of time, seasons of ebb and flow, and beginning again and again). I appreciate your reflective tips and advice. Hope you are celebrating every single win. I celebrate you!

    ReplyDelete

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