Self-Publishing Success Stories That Will Inspired You

Self-Publishing Success Stories

Finding a publisher is not an easy task these days, even if you think you have written a potential bestseller.

After writing, editing, and rewriting, you are probably frustrated with the responses you are receiving if you are trying to take the traditional publishing route.

Some writers give up on the idea of ever being published.

But we often read success stories of writers who were rejected many times by agents and publishers.

The reality of publishing

All writers have bills to pay and can’t wait around forever for their lucky day.

The publishing world is changing to online publishing, so, the idea of self-publishing might start to sound like a good idea.

It could seem to be a bit daunting to think about publishing your own book as an independent author, because of the doubts.

Doubt is what sets many writers back. They convince themselves that if a traditional publisher doesn’t want their book, that it will be a failure.

But this is not true today, because you can find a lot of ebook success stories in self-publishing.

Here are some inspiring self-publishing success stories of writers who made it big as Indie authors.


Amanda Hocking

After writing more than seventeen novels, Amanda, who is from Minnesota, didn’t find any success with the publishing houses.

So she decided to self-publish her novels as ebooks with Kindle Direct Publishing and achieved tremendous success.

Could you imagine writing seventeen novels and not one being accepted? The success of this story is that she went on to sell over a million copies.

After her success on Amazon Kindle, St Martin’s Press bought the rights to her first three novels for a staggering two million dollars.

It’s one of those stories that makes you feel motivated and inspires you to never to give up on your dream.


Michael J. Sullivan

He is another author who gave it his all. But and wasn’t accepted by any of the big publishing houses.

After writing for more than ten years, with no success, Sullivan gave up on writing.

He took ten years off, and then one day decided to start writing again. But still, no one wanted to publish his book, until his wife started a publishing agency.

He then decided to self-publish his book “Riyira Revelation” through his wife’s agency and gained the success he had always strived to find.

After his success, the publishing houses flooded him with offers.

It shows you that even if you take some time off, you can come back stronger than ever.


E.L. James

Even though the books written by James caused a lot of controversies, you have to admit that she is a huge success story in the self-publishing world.

In 2011 E.L. James published her first book without dreaming of overnight success.

But she believed that there was an audience for her genre of literature. So she published her first ebook title on the Kindle Store and promoted it from her blog and on social media.

The rest is history.

Today, her Fifty Shades of Grey series is known throughout the world and has caused such a hype that it is astonishing to think that she was initially self-published.

Not everyone is trying to gain the amount of success that she achieved, but she really is the poster child of self-publishing success.

She has now sold more than 100 million copies of her books, which is nothing short of miraculous.


Robert Kiyosaki

The book “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki is one of those books your parents hand down to you, with good reason.

The lessons displayed in this book are of such value that it is still popular today.

In 1997 he decided that he no longer wanted to be an employee and self-published this book.

He sold over 26 million copies of just this one book, so that is definitely a success.

This book focuses on some great financial advice we don’t necessarily get in business courses today.

He talks about graduates having to be employed while those with business minds seem to be the ones who are successful.

If you haven’t read this book yet, it is worth doing so.


Marcel Proust

Proust wrote a novel that was said to be the most rejected one in the twentieth century.

It is probably not the kind of reputation you want as a writer.

After receiving many rejections, Proust didn’t give up on his ability to be one of the best writers of all time.

He paid a publishing house to publish Swann’s Way and went on to sell millions of copies.

His original book, which was rejected so many times, was rewritten in a comic manner.

In 1998 he found a publisher for his most rejected book and then had great success.


Wayne Dryer

It is so strange to think that anyone would reject a book by Wayne Dryer, but he was not always as famous as he is now.

Originally, Dryer published his first self-help book. The book only ran for 4,500 prints, which wasn’t enough to find any degree of success.

Following that print, he traveled the world, trying to promote this book.

After doing that for a year, the book became one of the best-selling books of all time.

He sold more than 35 million copies of “Your Erroneous View,” and it was on the New York Times Bestseller list for sixty-four weeks.

Most writers would be happy to have their books on that list for just one week.

Today, Wayne Dryer is one of the most well-known motivational writers and speakers.



When you look at these success stories, it is easy to see that there is hope for those writers who are not published yet.

Don’t think that there is only one option to become a published author.

There are many publishing options available for authors now that authors didn’t have in the past. You can easily self-publish in ebook or print on demand paperback.

You can promote your book without leaving your living room. With all these opportunities, many new authors are opting to self-publish after being rejected by publishers.

Even if your confidence is a little bit down because of rejections, pick yourself up and publish for yourself and your future.

Derek Haines

A Cambridge CELTA English teacher and author with a passion for writing and all forms of publishing. My days are spent teaching English and writing, as well as testing and taming new technology.

2 thoughts on “Self-Publishing Success Stories That Will Inspired You

  • November 10, 2019 at 4:58 am

    I personally believe it’s all very well putting many words together, life is not that straightforward to just because she or he carries a weapon to harm someone a place to hide a flurry of thoughts that it is worth reading, unless you have something to write about coming from your heart mind & soul forget about it, life’s to precious to waste valuable time with meaningless pursuits, that is why my book when published may not rent in heavy volume sails, may not incorporate many full stops but mentioning that the letter V is found in the open book of life the forked tongue of the biblical snake the cloven hoof of the goat the corners of a hexagon the chemistry symbol of our bodies & what bees industrially make, I have something to say in my book ANTICHRIST RESERECTION. Yours faithfully, CAA

  • February 27, 2018 at 1:49 am

    It’s always good to hear these stories. Sometimes, they feel like urban legends – tall tales passed from author to author. I think you might be able to add Celestine Prophecy to the list. The author – as the rumor goes – sold it originally out of the trunk of his car.


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