Five-hundred books!

I have to say, this brings me a lot of pride and joy. I’ve said before that it was a tough decision for me to self-publish. Not just because it felt like a defeat to not get accepted by a publisher, but more importantly I realized that I would have to promote the book myself.

I guess I’m doing a pretty good job!

I was thinking today about the rejection letters that I received when I submitted Tao of Thoreau for publication. Two of them were real disappointments because they expressed interest at first: I really thought the dream would come true. Due to those near successes, I held on to the idea of being published, until I finally made the decision to give it a go.

Now, I’m thinking of each of those books as an acceptance letter. And that’s a good feeling!

I think I’ve turned a mental corner about my writing. I feel more like an accomplished author every day, and the wannabee dreamer is being put behind.

A year ago

A year ago I received my proof copy of Tao of Thoreau. It’s still a very cool moment and memory. I continue to try to appreciate every step on this journey.

I wondered then how many books I would sell. I frankly wondered if I’d sell any after friends and family bought theirs. As I write this, I have sold 495 books. A big number beckons, and 500 seems like a real milestone.

Though this is not the big dream I began in childhood, as I have said here before, it is better. It is reality. Instead of fantasizing about future success, I am planning ways to promote the book and get it to as wide an audience as possible.

If you’re interested in finding out more about my book, this page will give you some background and links to purchase on Amazon.

Is this true of me now?

This one hit me. I certainly have achieved a lot since I wrote this. Becoming a storyteller, getting published, publishing Tao of Thoreau, all the DIY projects I have completed.

At the same time, I think this still applies to me. I have grown a lot, but there is still so much to do. Finding unique and impactful ways to market and advertise my writing is on my mind all the time, and I don’t feel like I have done enough. I believe I will do more, but I need to change belief into action soon.

The line that really strikes me is “the highest level I can reach.” I know I wasn’t even close to that 7 years ago, because I am sure I am not close to that now. Although that doesn’t sound positive, I think it is. I have gained a higher level. And that’s an accomplishment. Now it’s a matter of taking it to the next.


I’ve reached another milestone on my publishing journey!

Four-hundred books! (That felt good to write out.)

Strangely, I have to force myself to celebrate this accomplishment. Part of the problem is that my publishing dreams have been so huge since I was a child, that it is hard for any reality to measure up.

What I’ve been doing is imagining them stacked up in forty piles of ten. Picturing this gives a geometry, a mass to what it means to have this many books out in the public.

This has been followed by, I think, a better visualization: 400 people actually owning and reading my book. That was what the dream was always about, if I strip away fantasies of amazing stardom and best-selling status.

People reading my words. What I have always wanted. What I am finally achieving.

Need a copy? Buy yours here: Tao of Thoreau – just 2.99 Kindle and 4.99 paperback.

Reality > Dreams

Ever since I was 12, I saw myself as a writer. Not just any writer, but one destined for fame, fortune and awards.  

Well, those sure were impressive dreams. Sadly, my reality hasn’t quite measured up. 

It turns out I like my reality better than those dreams. When I refresh the statistics on my Amazon dashboard, I get excited every time I sell a book. So, this morning when I saw this: 

It made me happy.  

Some days I don’t sell any. Some days I only sell one. Others, I sell a few. Recently I refreshed and the number jumped from 1 to 13! I literally couldn’t believe my eyes. I was so excited. 

Forty-seven cents is not drop the mic money, obviously. I intentionally left the price point low. My goal is not the fortune of profit, but the profit that I hope my readers take from the wisdom of Tao of Thoreau. The thought that people I don’t know are reading my book is so much better than my fantasies of fame. These are real people, and real readers. Somehow, that seems bigger than my gigantic imaginings. 

Castles in the Air

One of my favorite Thoreau quotes is: “If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put foundations under them.”   

My castle in the air has always been my writing ambitions. Although I’ve done a lot of writing, quite often I replaced working for success with dreaming of it. In my dreams I have been terrifically successful: best-sellers, TV interviews, movie adaptations. 

My reality has been much humbler: a handful of publication credits, 0 TV interviews or movie deals.  

That is until recently. Publishing Tao of Thoreau through Amazon finally attached a tower of my castle to some foundation stones. Still a humble accomplishment, but at least a tangible one. And last month, September 1, 2020 to today, October 1st, I sold 32 books. I don’t know who is buying them; I’m pretty sure all the friends and family bought theirs earlier in the year, so I can only assume that these are people hearing about my book and purchasing it. 

After hardly selling books for months, suddenly Tao of Thoreau took off.

This is after an August where I barely sold any. So maybe something is happening out there. Maybe my book is catching on. 

Strangers. Reading my work. A dream coming true. 

This website is another part of this supporting structure. Again, the numbers are not world-shattering, but I love seeing my statistics. Even one visitor eyeing my work is wonderful. And I’m having fun challenging myself to beat the previous weeks stats.  

My biggest takeaway is this: writing and publishing is making me feel joy. I’ve always enjoyed writing, but now the joy of this process is spreading to all areas of my life. I feel incredibly fortunate to be where I am in my writing journey, and I am so glad that you are reading this right now. Thank you! 


Tao of Thoreau sales

It’s wonderful to have the word ‘royalties’ to finally be part of my life. I first saw self-publishing to be a kind of defeat, a huge compromise to my dream of being accepted by a publisher.

Instead, it has become incredibly affirming. Not because money, which is nice. Because people are actually reading my words. The reality of self-publishing is infinitely better than the dream of being published.