It’s the time of year to take stock, isn’t it? Looking back at 2016, I feel I have worked hard. .I self-published my first book, How to Love Yourself in Less Than 50 Years. It had taken me two and a half years to write. Since publishing it I have constantly been learning about the technical aspects of self-publishing, and trying to learn about how to market a book. It would be fair to say it’s been pretty head-melting. In August I published a series of short eBooks called The Power of Inner Change for Outer Results. These ones contain links to free instructional videos and audio meditation downloads – more technical challenges! More melting of the head. Publishing to Amazon is relatively easy – but Smashwords now, that is a different kettle of fish. They have two sections. The first section is for publication on the Smashwords site itself, and their premium catalogue which is for the circulation of the book to the likes of Barnes & Noble and Kobo. Getting your book accepted for the Smashwords site is okay, but the premium catalogue – aha! This is where the true melting of the head starts. To date, I have reformatted two of the eBook series three times each, to no avail. I have written before about the necessity of perseverance for successful self-publishing, and it has to be said that Smashwords premium catalogue is the best teacher of patience and perseverance I have ever encountered. So this year has been an intense lesson in just sticking with it, and plugging away. A highlight of the year was opening the packet containing the first proof copy of my paperback. Was it worth two and a half years work? Yes, actually, it was. Another highlight was getting an email from KDP about my first royalty payment. Was it all worth it? In terms of personal achievement goals, yes, it was. I’m beginning to realise that writing, publishing and marketing my own books is a long, long-term journey. If you are on the same journey, just hang in there and keep working away. It helps when it’s your passion, because you will need to call on that energy of passion for the self-discipline to keep at it. In the meantime, help yourself to a free Kindle copy of How to Love Yourself in Less Than 50 Years on Amazon from tomorrow for five days only, finishing at midnight on Sunday, January 1st 1017. I hope you enjoy it.