How to Become a Six Figure Author

Andrew Wood
4 min readFeb 29, 2024

I am not your typical starving author who battled for years to make a living. I was incredibly lucky, my first book, self published in 1991, How to Make $100,000 a Year Teaching Martial Arts made $300,000. After printing, mailing and marketing it netted me about $85,000 over a five year period. (I made ten times that amount doing live seminars based on the book, all over the USA)

But I have also had plenty of humiliating failures :(

I just publish my 51st book, Death of a Union. My first forty-four books were nonfiction, mainly marketing books, while the last seven were fiction.

My best selling book, The Golf Marketing Bible, has made close to $500,000 since it was self-published in 2005.

My worst-selling book Legendary Achievement sold.

Wait for it…

One copy.

Was it a bad book?

No, it was actually quite good, but it was generic goal setting book, of which there are already too many.

All the books I have written that made at least $100,000 (6) were all niche books.

My best-selling fiction book, Confessions of a Golf Pro, is also a niche market.

Many of my books make very little money, but I am still happy I wrote them. I write because I like to write, and the more you write the better you get. Books that fail financially can always be repurposed somewhere.

For example, I repurposed my book that sold one copy as an online niche course, in a market of middle aged women, who loved horses, which made $750,000.

Go figure!

I have had high quality professionally edited, and polished books, and I’ve had quick less than perfect efforts where I just came up with an idea and banged it out.

Either option is just as likely to succeed or fail.

Perfection is for idiots!

Every book that made money was the result of one thing and one thing only: the quality of my email list or my snail mail list back in the day.

Note I did not say the quality of my writing or editing, the later of which was often poor; I said the quality of my email list. Few writers want to hear this information, but I spend the first two hours of everyday marketing!

And I do mean everyday!

I have finally capitulated to Amazon for the fulfillment. The reason I have so few reviews for many of my books on their platform is because I sold 99% of my books directly to the customer over the last twenty five years.

You build a solid golden email list when you sell directly to your reader which makes it easier to sell you next book.

But you have to print and ship and I’m done with that.

The second most important way to sell books, and it’s a very distant second, is relentless content marketing. It must be fantastic content to cut through the clutter.

If all you do is post a picture of your book on social media, like 99% of authors, you are wasting your time. You must engage, educate, and entertain before selling any product; a book is no exception.

I have sold many books on LinkedIn with creative content marketing. Do not ignore this market.

I post content here daily

Almost everything else is a waste of time IF you are looking for a real return on your efforts.

How to niche if you have no niche.

Let’s say your fiction book is about a burning skyscraper. Target firefighter, police officers, and first responder. Look for their Facebook or LinkedIn groups. Gain interest by asking them technical questions about your books as you write. Buy, rent, beg, steal, or borrow mailing lists of firehouses. They have a lot of time to read. Let them know the fireman is the hero of your story.

For my latest fiction book I have created a Facebook page for my protagonist , Maggie McGown. I am using Facebook ads to reach people in Scotland of a certain political view, (she is the first minister in my book) I don’s know yet if this will work but its been a blast and a single post has 300 comments.

Build your list, create great content, and develop a niche market even if you think you don’t have one. That and spend two hours a day marketing!

If you are interested in learning more I have a free course on Book Marketing at check it out!



Andrew Wood

Author & Marketing Legend with over 50 books :I write on: Marketing, Travel, Sales, Success, Biz, Leadership, Golf, Autos, Books, Events