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I have a best selling book on Amazon!

Updated on October 28, 2015
Pcunix profile image

I was born in 1948 and spent most of my career as a self employed computer trouble shooter for Unix systems.

Unix and Linux Troubleshooting E-Book

Yes, that's the title and yes, it's just as esoteric as it sounds. The audience for that subject is limited - many of the people reading this hub won't even know what that might entail, but let's just say that there were enough people interested seven years ago to put several thousand dollars in my pocket in the first year and although sales have declined, I still sell a few every month.

It was worth my time. It took me about a month to scratch out 214 pages. I felt I made enough money to justify that effort and I was happy. Sure, I would have been happier if it had made me $50,000 or more, but that wasn't going to happen and I knew that.

I had lost interest

But because sales had tapered off, I honestly haven't paid much attention to it in several years. It was only because I was recently polishing up my resume that I went to my Amazon product page - I wanted to make sure I had the right link.

Upon arriving there I noticed that two people had been kind enough to leave very nice reviews. One called my book "Whimsical, entertaining, yet informative" and as that indeed was my goal in writing it, I was happy to see that.

Screen shot of Amazon reviews
Screen shot of Amazon reviews | Source

The ranking

But then I noticed the rankings Amazon adds to the listing. I almost rubbed my eyes: did that really say that my book was number 38 in Kindle Store>Kindle eBooks>Computers & Technology>Operating Systems>Unix ?

Yes, it did and it also said I was number 73 in the more inclusive Books>Computers & Technology>Operating Systems>Unix category. Even the overall ranking for all Kindle books had me at 165,644. That last one is a long way from best selling, but gosh, there must be millions of Kindle books, so it's not at all shabby!

It's a best seller!

Amazon "best seller" page as of October 2015
Amazon "best seller" page as of October 2015 | Source

Proud or not?


At first I was a bit negative about this. After all, it's not like being in the New York Times Best Seller List or being mentioned by Oprah. It's a book with a very limited audience and although I sold it at $29.95 the first year, I reduced it to $2.99 later. At that price, many people will buy it just out of curiosity.

But hey, was I being fair to myself? I thought about it more and decided that yes, it may be a smallish feather in my cap, but it is a feather and it is important and worth mentioning.

Shout it out!

So I did. Although I hadn't done any advertising of my book in seven years, I put out a Twitter blast and mentioned it on Facebook and Google-Plus. I sent bragging email to family and friends. Hey, why not? It may be an obscure little accomplishment, but it's not something every author can claim. I can swell up my chest a little bit, can't I?

An update?

After recovering from my initial shock, I've been thinking about this. Should I do an update? The book is seven years old and there is certainly plenty of new information I could add. Some sections might benefit from some corrections made necessary by advancing technology, too. I have the time, and the subject matter still interests me.. should I?

On the other hand, the dollar return might not be worth the effort. I don't think I could raise the price and I'm not sure how many of the updates would sell. This might be a fair amount of work for little return.

But there it is at number 38 - maybe updating could push it even higher and it might have a decent return?

Would you update?

If you were me, would you update?

See results

Hard copy?

Back when I wrote this in 2008, I did put out a feeler to see if any of the folks who publish titles like this would be interested. I got turned down flat - most didn't even bother to answer me and those that did just sent form email rejecting the idea.

But things have changed since then. Print on Demand publishing has become much more efficient and less expensive. And again, there is that #38 ranking - they've put out other hard copy books that are well below mine.

Should I investigate that again?

Try for hard copy?

Should I approach publishers for print on demand?

See results

A best selling author!

So that's how I became a "best selling" author. I'm quite sure that has more to do with the niche I was writing in than any extreme talent on my part, but still: it took some talent, right?

No, I'm not adding the link here. Really, any normal person wouldn't be interested in buying it. If by some odd circumstance you are, I bet you can find it at Amazon without too much effort!


Submit a Comment

  • Pcunix profile imageAUTHOR

    Tony Lawrence 

    2 years ago from SE MA

    I think it may have finally passed into oblivion :)

  • Fiona Jean Mckay profile image


    2 years ago from South Africa

    I think it is cool that your book is a best-seller even 7 years after the fact, no matter how small the market is. Well done.

  • Carol Morris profile image

    Carol Morris 

    2 years ago

    Well done. I would certainly let everyone know about it.

  • easylearningweb profile image

    Amelia Griggs 

    3 years ago from U.S.

    Congratulations on your accomplishment, Tony! And thanks for posting your progress and outcome which is very inspirational. Good luck with your writing and publishing.

    May success and prosperity be yours.



  • Pcunix profile imageAUTHOR

    Tony Lawrence 

    3 years ago from SE MA

    Actually, I'd say writing a book is more about hard work than talent.

  • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

    Susan Hazelton 

    3 years ago from Sunny Florida

    that is amazing. Congratulations. It definitely takes talent.

  • AliciaC profile image

    Linda Crampton 

    3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

    Congratulations! This hub is definitely inspirational. In answer to one of your questions - yes, your success did require talent!

  • Pcunix profile imageAUTHOR

    Tony Lawrence 

    3 years ago from SE MA

    I'll check out Crearepace, thanks!

  • Say Yes To Life profile image

    Yoleen Lucas 

    3 years ago from Big Island of Hawaii

    You can publish in paperback for free, through CreateSpace. You can even choose the same cover picture.

    I used Unix during my Silicon Valley yeats. I wasn't aware it was still around. Congratulations on your success in writing about this topic!

  • NateB11 profile image

    Nathan Bernardo 

    3 years ago from California, United States of America

    Very cool! Congrats!

  • Pcunix profile imageAUTHOR

    Tony Lawrence 

    3 years ago from SE MA


    Millions. Most webservers run on Unix/Linux. All Apple computers run on a Unix base. Chromebooks are Linux. Android is a Linux base. Many supercomputers are Linux.

  • chefsref profile image

    Lee Raynor 

    3 years ago from Citra Florida

    Hey Pcunix

    Congrats are in order here! You have accomplished something of note on a difficult subject. Time to brag!

    I remember a few years ago wanting to add Linux as an operating system, but life and work got in the way.

    How many people are using Unix and Linux nowadays?

  • Austinstar profile image


    3 years ago from Somewhere near the center of Texas

    Congratulations! Quite an accomplishment. This should inspire the rest of us.

  • fpherj48 profile image


    3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Pcunix.....So that's what you've been up to! A huge Congratulations to you. This IS a reason to crow and to celebrate! I share in your happiness. Whatever you want to do next...go for it and best of luck!

  • Pcunix profile imageAUTHOR

    Tony Lawrence 

    3 years ago from SE MA

    Thanks, Kathleen and good luck to you also.

  • Kathleen Cochran profile image

    Kathleen Cochran 

    3 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

    That is no small accomplishment! Congratulations are definitely in order. When I finished my first book, which was a disaster, my husband said no matter what, I could say I'd actually written a book. Most people just talk about doing it. I'm now starting my sixth - but no best sellers - yet! Good luck in the future!!!


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