Power Tower Book: One Year Later
A year ago this week I self-published and released Power & Towers & Swimming: The Guide to the public, and I thought it would be fun to take a look back at a few highlights and stats over the past year, celebrating a first birthday, so to speak. Writing is a rewarding experience and quite educational at that, and this book on power training for swimming is certainly no exception. One of the most rewarding parts of the entire process is that I now have a physical object that I can see, touch, and say “there it is, that is my work.” Certainly that is not why we write, to hold paper in the hand once completed, but I would be lying if I said that having a physical record of those many hours of thoughts, writing, and revision is not rewarding in its own right.
- Total Sales
This is the first question I receive when people ask about the book.
“How many copies have you sold?”
I wonder sometimes what that says about our collective psyche as a society if that number, total sales, is the first question that an overwhelming majority of people ask. Questions such as what did you learn throughout the writing process, how did the book impact your growth as a coach, how did the book impact the lives of other coaches, what value did it provide, etc., are afterthoughts at best, and in many cases no thoughts at worst. It is as though total sales is a reflection of the value of the process itself in the eyes of many, as if the growth and learning is somehow tied to revenue numbers on the back end. Writing is writing, and growth is growth, whether the work receives critical acclaim or considered a flop. Power & Towers was a fantastic experience in all the various ways that the writing process could be fantastic, and that wouldn’t change if I sold 5 copies or 50,000. Having said as much, total sales is the most asked question I receive, and I do answer it every time.
Total Sales to date: 437
I have no data on other swimming books to compare sales volume, so I don’t know if this is “good” or “bad” in terms of total units shipped. Not that total sales would matter anyway (see above), but I do know this - I don’t know 437 swimming coaches. Those in the profession bought the book outside of my sphere influence and contacts, and before you ask, yes, my mother did buy a copy, but just one!
As for the longevity of sales, there are few limits to the long-term potential. Because I self-published I never have to worry about the book going out of print. With print on demand services there is no need for large runs; some 10 years from now a coach could buy the book from Barnes and Noble or Amazon as a single order, it would print, then ship to the customer, all without needing reserve stock on a shelf.
The book is available worldwide through several outlets including my preferred method at Lulu.com, where I self-published, and thus far I’m excited to see the book found its way to pool decks in the following countries:
I have and continue to receive much positive feedback, and it feels good, for lack of a better term, to contribute value to the body of swimming knowledge, however small or large the impact might be. I rest well knowing the long hours of thinking, writing, editing, and revising are now put to good use in pools throughout the country, and the world. If nothing else, just the idea of inspiring thought, debate, or new concepts in the adjacent possible is worth the process alone.
The book was featured on several media outlets and swimming sites, including a two-part series in Swimming World Magazine. You can find the first segment here, and read about the series here. Another prominent feature appeared on the Chris Ritter Sports Performance podcast, found here, and Chris also hosted a webinar featuring the book here. Yet another review, this time from The Swimming Wizard workout blog, is found here.
- Miscellaneous Fun Fact
The book is on the shelf of the Liberty University Barnes & Noble bookstore under the “faculty authors” section, and I thought this a nice gesture from the folks that run our bookstore. While I obviously am not considered faculty, thank you to the LU Bookstore for carrying the work of a staff member as well!
Looking back of the past year, it was quite a bit of work to undertake this project, but as with most efforts that take much work, the reward is worth the sacrifice. Life tends to fall that way more often than not; it is the hard stuff that tends to lead to the greatest rewards, whether in the physical or cognitive sphere.