I Self-Published a Book.

Here’s how I did it.

Midnight. It’s 2018. I welcome the New Year sharing a Hot Tub with my Best Friend. We swiftly remind ourselves of the many highs and lows of 2017. And then move on to our New Years Resolutions. I only have one this year, it’s a simple one: “2018 will be The Year of Making Shit.”

Making Shit - (/ˈmeɪkɪŋ/ /ʃɪt/)

Only Ideas is available at www.onlyideasbook.com

Why a Book? Honestly, a book seemed achievable. I knew I could write one and I realised I could design it and self-publish. One day I’ll write a book for everyone, but for now, I’m lucky to have a very niche market of Magicians who are interested in what I have to say. It seemed like an excellent first project. Mission accepted.

Writing? I came up with the title ‘Only Ideas’, and it’s theme pretty quickly. The book would contain one new idea on every page. A super simple pocket-sized book to spark your creativity in Magic. I already had a huge pool of Ideas in my iPhone notes. I compiled them all then wrote out another 50 over a week or so. My friend Geraint Clarke read the first draft and immediately suggested I add a section on creating magic at the start. A couple drafts later and the book is complete.

Printing? I would like to say that printing was easy. It was not. The best printer I found in the UK didn’t accept the sizing of my book. They also wanted it in true black, and oh my god did this take a while to figure out. I ended up using bookprintinguk, and after a bumpy start, I can now say they’re great. There’s no such thing as a fast turnaround with them but the books are high quality and an excellent price.

Setting up Shop? Shopify is the answer to everything. They’re incredible for a thousand and one reasons. The store looks professional, I can track my customer’s analytics, and it automatically prints my shipping labels through Royal Mail. It’s heaven. My brother @frasertakesphotos took some lovely pics and two hours later the store was built and ready to launch. I spent £7 on the site www.onlyideasbook.com and snatched up the insta @onlyideasbook and boom, let’s do it.

The Big Release. Shopify's home page displays every single visitor live on your store across a world map. You can track how many people are adding products to their cart, how many people are checking out and you get a notification with every sale. Watching this for the first hour on launch day felt like watching the Super Bowl. If you have a chance to self-publish, go for it.

Pro Tips:

1) Send Free Copies to Friends.

2) It’s OK to Sell-Out, it’s not OK to Over-Order.

3) People like Free Stickers. They f**king Love ‘Em.

Next Up: How I Tried (and failed) to Sell a Show to Netflix.

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Sound Off Co-Founder. Telly, Board Games and Magic Writer.