Saturday, August 9, 2014

Ten Thousand Readers

You’ve heard of the 
10,000 Hour Rule.

Best-selling author Malcolm Gladwell tells us that it takes  hours of practice to become an expert in any field. Another best-selling author, Steven Pressfield,  now says that it takes ten thousand readers to make a successful book.

Nothing about his statement is surprising, of course. If you can get 10,000 people to buy your book, just about anyone would agree that it was a successful effort. Other authors have told us that the major publishers consider the 10K mark to be their break-even point on any particular title.

What is remarkable about Mr. Pressfield’s assertion is that it is not the number of books sold that matters, but rather the number of books read. Assuming the book is any good to begin with – and certainly that is no small assumption – if you can convince ten thousand readers to spend time between the covers of your story, the book is very likely to become a commercial success. 

With 102 initial funders to help us publish the book, 100 copies given away to pre-med and medical students, a handful of review copies for critics and a few hundred more in actual sales, Past Medical History has done everything we hoped it would as a small studio project, an interesting experiment in writing and self-publishing, and a long-overdue review of why someone would quit being a doctor just to draw funny pictures. 

It also means that we still have around 9000 readers to go before this book can be counted as a popular success.

Why should that matter?

Frankly, it doesn’t. Not to us. Sure, as business people we would we love to see thousands of copies fly off the shelves of bookstores worldwide. As the author, I can tell you that my ego would not be hurt one bit if lots of folks wanted to read about me. But we’re fairly satisfied with the fact that the book got written and printed, and is readily available should anyone want to read the back-story behind my art. Bucket List: Check.
Past Medical History

But then there came the comments, the feedback that we really didn't expect to hear from casual readers:

“An accurate portrait of the medicine told from the inside.”

“The best book I could have read before applying to medical school.”

“For everyone out there who has ever wondered "what if?" about their life's choices, this is a great thought provoking and well written book.”

“Captured the essence of many of the problems in medicine that no one wants to talk about.”

This book should be required reading for pre-meds or medical students before they face the reality of residency.

“This book serves as a reminder to find one's true calling in life.”

Seriously? Apparently so.

After fielding responses like these from among the first few hundred readers, it occurred to us that there might actually be more people out there who would appreciate the chance to read Past Medical History. And since we don't have the time or the resources to manage a national advertising campaign, it might be a good idea to try and find new readers precisely the way Steven Pressfield suggests.

How did he we get his book into the hands of thousands of new readers? He gave his books away. For free.

What could be simpler? 

So, we're now offering Past Medical History, free of charge, to anyone who wants to read our book, or share it with others (and we hope they do both). 

No obligation. No hidden fees. No spam. 
No kidding. 

Just click here to get yours:

Test drive a few, or all of the stories in the collection. See what it's like to be a medical student, or a surgical resident, or a wannabe artist. Then if you decide you would rather have an actual, physical, three-dimensional paperback copy of the book to keep and read and share with friends, or just take up space on your desk or your nightstand as an arm rest for your cat, we’ll be happy to sell you one through our web site, or on Amazon.

Whether or not you buy a book, we want you to
Become one of our First 10,000 Readers. We're pretty sure you'll enjoy the ride, and who knows? You just might help turn our book into a best seller!

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