Not a Gold Rush & oh by the way, still really hard work

The Taleist Self-Publishing Survey, Not a Gold Rush, is finally out, in case you wanted to get your hands on a copy. In an interesting move, they chose to self-publish the survey exclusively on Amazon. The survey analyzes the responses of more than 1000 self-published authors to 61 different questions ranging from basic demographics to how long they have been writing, where they get writing help, and how much they make self-publishing.

And on a related note — in the age of rapidly proliferating ebooks, if you want to make a living from your books, it is no longer enough to write just one a year. According to Elizabeth Spann Craig, you’ll need to churn out three or four. Here’s her report on what life is like at that writing pace.

This is advice I’ve heard from many other quarters, although at this point, I’m not at a stage to make good use of it. I’ll be happy getting my first out. Maybe then I’ll switch to writing the type of series novels that lend themselves to faster book production schedules. Or maybe not.


About Shala Howell

I spent two decades helping companies like Bell Labs, Juniper Networks, and a genetic testing company that was later acquired by CVS translate some of the world’s most complicated concepts into actionable, understandable English. Now I'm working on a much harder problem -- fostering children’s curiosity and engagement in the scientific, artistic, and linguistic world that surrounds them. The first book in my Caterpickles Parenting Series, What’s That, Mom?, focuses on how to use public art to nurture children’s curiosity in the world around them. My next book will focus on science, and how parents without a science degree can answer their curious child's questions without enrolling in a college level refresher course. In the meantime, you can find me blogging about life with a very curious Eleven-Year-Old at, chatting about books and the writing life at, and tweeting about books, writing, science, & things that make me smile at @shalahowell.
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