Some thoughts on finishing my tenth book

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I just published my tenth book on Amazon, the third book in my third series. I was just thinking back to when I gave up on being a writer back in the late 90s. I had two SF books written and I’d secured a reputable agent, which everyone told me was the hardest part. But after two years and change trying to market the books, she couldn’t sell them and our contract lapsed and I said, “the heck with it. This is obviously not what I’m going to be doing with my life.” And I didn’t complete another book for nearly 15 years.
But starting in late 2010, friends started telling me I should look into self-publishing on Amazon for their new Kindle e-readers. I kind of just blew it off: self-publishing back then was akin to vanity publishing, and it was something wannabes and losers did, paying for stacks of copies of your own book that you kept in boxes in your garage and trotted out at conventions or something.
And then I started hearing about people who self-published on Amazon making hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. Finally, in 2011, I put those two original books on Amazon for 99 cents each with crappy, thrown-together covers and crappy formatting and sold 30,000 copies the first year.
6 years later, almost to the month, I just put my 10th book out on Amazon and it blows my mind. When I think about how many times over those 15 years I started one book after another but just gave up after 30 or 50 or 80 pages because I figured who the heck was ever going to read it? I really never would have imagined that I’d be sitting here in 2017 making enough money to live on doing what I always wanted to do. Yeah, it took a long time, but I still feel lucky because most people never get to say that.

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