Meet the Author – An Interview with Julie Broad, author of “Self-Publish & Succeed: The No Boring Books Way to Writing a Non-Fiction Book that Sells”

Self-Publish & Succeed: The No Boring Books Way to Writing a Non-Fiction Book that Sells

Julie Broad
Stick Horse Publishing (2021)
ISBN: 978-1-73603150-6

Julie Broad, founder of self-publishing services firm Book Launchers and Amazon Overall #1 Best-Selling Author, knows what it takes to successfully self-publish a book. Her popular YouTube channel, BookLaunchers.TV, embodies the hashtag of #noboringbooks helping nonfiction authors write and market books people want to read.

Julie’s titles include More than Cashflow, which topped Amazon, The New Brand You, and her latest book, Self-Publish & Succeed. A recognized real estate investor, successful entrepreneur, and notable speaker, Julie also received the Top 20 under 40 Award for her business and community contributions. She’s been speaking on stages across Canada and the US since 2009, sharing her strategies to write a book that builds your business and have more impact and influence with your brand.

An expert on writing a book with marketing in mind, Julie teaches the best approaches to get results, make an impact, and ultimately, make more money. Julie always leaves people inspired, excited, and with clear steps to take action immediately. Her advice for authors and investors has been featured in Forbes,, Yahoo! Business, CTV, the Toronto Sun, and many local and national TV shows.

Born and raised in Canada, Julie currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband and son. When she’s not busy with Book Launchers or her family, you’ll find her at CrossFit or playing poker.

Hi Julie, welcome to Reader Views! Tell us about your book, Self-Publish & Succeed: The ‘No Boring Books’ Way to Write a Non-Fiction Book That Sells.

Self-Publish & Succeed is a step-by-step guide to writing, publishing, and marketing a book that will get attention, explode your career, and change people’s lives.

The focus of Self Publish & Succeed is on non-fiction. Would fiction authors benefit as well?

Non-fiction and fiction have similarities, but the book is really focused on positioning a book to grow a business, leave a legacy, and build a brand. The fundamental elements of self-publishing and marketing a book will apply to fiction authors and be of value, but the book is
written for those business, self-help, how-to, and memoir authors.

What is the most common mistake you see from authors in writing and then trying to promote their books?

The most common mistake is putting a book on Amazon and then trying to figure out how to market the book. Your book marketing strategy and approach needs to be built into the book from the moment you think about writing it. The hook of your book, the audience, and the content you direct to that audience must be very intentionally positioned to appeal to an audience and fit with a marketing plan.

What do you recommend as the most important “first steps” for authors with a concept but no clue of where to go from there?

  1. Determine your overall goal – what does success look like once your book is out? And, success is rarely only becoming a bestseller. Success might be what happens after you are a bestseller (media, money, more opportunities) but you need to define that clearly so you know what you need to do to create success towards that goal.
  2. Define your audience so clearly that you can write the book specifically for them. You know what they are worried about, what their dreams are, how they have tried to solve their problem and why it hasn’t worked. Your book is not for everyone, nor is it for women between the ages of 35-50.
  3. Identify the hook of your book. Think of the outcome you want for your reader. What are you offering that they really need and how is that going to make their life better? You can find this in something you may share that is slightly controversial or that goes against commonly held practices. Or, maybe you have an innovated a new solution. Ultimately, you just need to have something that differentiates your book, even just a little, from any other advice or story they are already seeing available in book format.

A lot of material in Self-Publish & Succeed highlights the people and services of your company, Book Launchers. It sounds like you have created a fantastic organization to help indie authors. What can Book Launchers do for authors wanting to self-publish?

We help subject matter experts and people with powerful stories write, publish, and promote non-fiction books that will grow their brand and their business. Our focus is on setting you up to create success with your launch and beyond; so, we help with concept development, positioning, author branding and then we help you write the book (with a writer or a coach). The production process layers marketing into every step to ensure we have done the research and preparation necessary for a strong launch. Then, we do pre-launch and post-launch marketing to open the door to new opportunities, help the author build a brand, and sell books.

Does reading the book and working with Book Launchers go hand in hand? How much of what you do at Book Launchers can an author glean from reading and working through Self-Publish & Succeed?

Self-Publish & Succeed gives you a great guide if you want to do it yourself. You don’t have to hire Book Launchers if you are on a budget or don’t want full service, integrated marketing, and high experienced professionals. The book is an excellent guide to do it yourself and avoid common pitfalls.

You also don’t have to read the book to work with us because we are a service company, and we walk you through the process while we’re doing it. The book is valuable for the authors who like to understand the process while they are going through it, but many don’t read it. 

How do you recommend someone read/work through Self-Publish & Succeed? Should it be read cover to cover or can one jump around to different sections as needed?

I highly recommend reading it cover to cover, but if there is a chapter you don’t need (for example the one on ghostwriters), you skip over it then.

How important is the preparation process before you even start to write? (This sounds like an opportunity for PANSTERS to mend their ways).

Having written a book without preparation, I can tell you that it takes three times as long and ends up in a lot of wasted words (35,000 words cut to be precise). The book turned out really good in the end, but that was only thanks to herculean efforts by editors!

The most important step in book writing is positioning, and that is best done before you start writing. Positioning will give you that clarity of how the book fits into your bigger goals, who the book is for, and what you’re offering that is of value (the hook!).

You have written one of the most thorough yet concise books on self-publishing I’ve seen. How does Self-Publish & Succeed distinguish itself from other books in the genre?

Thank you! The book is a reflection of our philosophy at Book Launchers that non-fiction books should be books you want to read; so they can’t be boring. This means you need to always keep your reader in mind, and you want to be thinking about marketing before you start writing.

Other books do a great job on pieces of the self-publishing process, for example writing craft or marketing the book. What was missing to me, in a service firm and a book, was that full integration of how you write a book that will be easier to sell and be better set up to achieve your goals.

Your chapter titles are amazing! Sounds like they were a lot of fun to create and really call to the reader. I guess that’s one way your book stands out – your first chapter isn’t titled Chapter 1. What do chapter titles do for the overall salability of a book?

For many authors, chapter titles don’t even get a second thought after they write it down. Every chapter title should be selling the book. This means they need to create curiosity, offer a benefit, or both! Many people have boring chapter titles, and it’s really a missed opportunity because it can be the final decision factor for book buyers, event organizers looking for speakers, or media outlets looking for experts.

If you think of every chapter title as something that has to stand alone then you will put a bit more effort into making it stand out. 

How long did it take you to write Self Publish & Succeed and what part of the process do you enjoy the most?

I actually started writing the book in 2018, but the company was so new and demanded a lot of attention that I stopped writing for almost two years. I picked it back up in 2020 and realized the break was great for the book because we had worked with 150 different authors during that time and really refined our process. Through those experiences and process refinements, I was able to offer much deeper value with the book.

Once I started writing again, I don’t think it took that long, especially because I used scripts from some of my YouTube videos to make the process go faster. That said, there were some starts and stops because I ended up moving my family from Los Angeles back to Canada for a while due to the pandemic.

I listened to the audiobook version of Self-Publish & Succeed and absolutely loved the experience of being connected to you. I felt like I was getting one-on-one coaching. Should all non-fiction authors publish audiobooks and when doing so, why should the author do the narrating?

Thank you for saying that! It affirms what I always say which is the author should almost always be the narrator. Now, if you have challenges with reading like dyslexia, a heavy accent (I am Canadian so I do have an accent but it doesn’t distract the listener or make my words difficult to understand), or your book is more of a fable that tells a story to teach a lesson and you want the story brought to life, you may want a professional narrator.

If you’re a podcaster or you do speaking or video, your audience knows your voice so you should be the narrator. It’s jarring to hear your words come out of someone else’s mouth when you are familiar to your audience. And, for the new listener, as you noted, it builds an intimate connection to hear your voice so I highly recommend you narrate your book. Plus, it’s a ton of fun recording your book, and it’s an opportunity to spot little issues that you don’t spot when you read it on your own.

What kind of feedback have you received from authors who have used the #noboringbooks method? Do you have a success story that stands out?

Ultimately, I am a bit like a mom that is proud of all her children so it’s impossible to pick one story. Also, how everyone defines success is different. That said, everyone we work with appreciates the effort we put into making their story stand out. We take a story structure approach to non-fiction books and that makes a book people want to read. One cool example is Robert Belle who wrote Blow the Lid Off. He’s an accountant who is sharing a message about the power of creativity.  Through the process of writing his book he refined his message, and then as he marketed it on podcasts, he further found angles within the message that really resonated. All of that work led him to a Ted Global Ideas talk that has been viewed more than 2 million times! I love hearing stories like that.

So what’s next for you? Is there another #NoBoringBook in your future?

There will always be another #noboringbook in my future, and the next one is on book marketing because it’s an enormous subject that I couldn’t fit into Self-Publish and Succeed without making it an almanac. Originally, I’d planned to release it in 2022, but I think it will be early 2023 as the book keeps getting bigger and bigger, but it will be an amazing resource for anyone that wants to market a non-fiction book.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

My personal philosophy is the ‘missing piece is always action’; so, my recommendation to anyone thinking of writing a book is to get to work. You don’t need that first draft to be perfect or even that good, you just need it to be positioned well and then out of your head and onto the page and then turn it over to the editors.

Thank you so much for this honor.








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