Bootstrapped Success

When you hear a book has been self-published, what do you think? You probably believe the content is weak and the material quality is low, right? After all, if the author couldn’t get a publisher, the book is probably a waste of time.

Think again.

Evangelist David Nasser self-published his first book out of necessity, and, according to the experts, he did everything wrong. The book was too long, he spent too much on the hardcover and expensive paper, and the title was depressing. But Nasser proved the naysayers wrong, selling 130,000 copies of A Call to Die (2000), mainly online and at his many speaking engagements.

Those impressive sales could have landed him a contract with a major publisher for his second book (A Call to Grace, 2005), but he once again chose to self-publish, in part to keep the cover price low for his young audience. That title sold 20,000 copies so far. Now, with the release of his third book, Glory Revealed, Nasser has founded his own company, Redemptive Art Publishing, and has teamed up with Word Distribution–which usually only handles CDs and videos–for distribution of his books, including an in-the-works novel.

“I think this is the new, new frontier—tailor-made partnerships,” said Nasser, a 36-year-old Iranian-born Christian speaker, author, and minister.

Non-traditional methods of publishing have been gaining in popularity for the past ten years or so, but haven’t really been taken seriously due to the lack of proven sales. Nasser’s efforts show that for some books, the DIY method can work.

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