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Updated on July 22, 2022 7:12 am
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Updated on July 22, 2022 7:12 am
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Updated on July 22, 2022 7:12 am

Guess what I just finally read for the first time…

That sounds improbable, right? After all, I wrote this book and published it back in 2016. Indeed, in one sense I have probably read this book more than any other person on the planet.

I spent three full years writing and rewriting it over an over again till my eyes bled. And, of course, I had written the posts upon which the material in it is based before that — also a process of writing and rewriting; and rewriting.

In this way, I have read every word, every sentence, every paragraph, every chapter in it repeatedly. I read them separately, and I read them together to see how they flowed. Then read them again for editing and polish and accuracy.

Three years. Over and over.

By the time it was published, I couldn’t bear to look at it. 

But with all that time spent with it, I never actually sat down and read it as a book. That is, cover to cover. Moreover, I never wanted to. I was sick to death of it. Maybe that’s why I have been so surprised at its success.

In the weeks leading up to publication, I got to wondering what a successful book looked like. Basically, summarizing all the opinions I received, it seemed:

  • The vast majority of books published sell less than 1,000 copies.
  • Those that sell 1,000+ are considered a success.
  • Hitting the 5,000 mark was excellent.
  • Reaching 10,000, a home run.

With the following on my blog, I felt pretty confident The Simple Path to Wealth could sell 5,000 copies, and 10,000 seemed possible.

Because I can’t help myself, I calculated how much I’d make if it hit 10,000 and how much time I had spent writing it. Dividing that dollar figure by those hours, I came up with my hourly pay rate:

Roughly half of what McDonalds would have paid me to flip burgers.

I was OK with that. Selling 10,000 books was still a dream.

When the book first came out in June, it sold 2,168 copies — a nice start. In July is sold slightly more, and then began to drift down until November when there was a spike to 2,572 for Christmas sales. It closed the year with a total of 11,692. I was thrilled.

I was also expecting it to drift down from there, and for 2017 it mostly did. Where in 2016 it averaged 1670 copies per month, in its second year it dropped to 1217 copies per month and never again broke 2000.

But in 2018, things began to turn. The average grew to 2355 copies per month (CPM), and kept on going:

  • 2019 = 3606 CPM
  • 2020 = 6123 CPM
  • 2021 = 9040 CMP, through September

It has also now been published in Japan, Korea and Germany. Deals have been signed for publication in Russia, Poland, Spain, Brazil, Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand, China, Taiwan and the Middle East (Arabic). 

Everyday I hear from people telling me I have changed their lives. (Just to be clear: for the better)

It is nothing short of breathtaking.

Of course, it hasn’t been all sunshine and rainbows…

Anonymous described me as a: 

“Fat fuck….Vanguard pimp”

Bob Smithies advised:

“Don’t take advice from someone who cannot manage their own wasteline.”

Ethan was more blunt:

“this guy’s a fuckin idiot”

Bob, of Bob’s Backtested Bunker, was also direct:

“the fact that a single person would listen to your nonsense is criminal”

With these insightful observations, along with my own Disclaimers, consider yourself warned!

In any event, after several years of this I figured maybe the time to actually, you know, sit down and read it had come. So I, of course, requested it from my local library. That was back in December, 2020. It finally showed up last month. Seems there is a bit of a queue for it.

You know what?

The opinions of Bob, Bob, Ethan and Anonymous not withstanding, I think it’s pretty good.

Mostly I am honored by all of you who have read and enjoyed it, especially those of you who have taken the time to tell me what it has meant to you.

Thank You!


Coming shortly is my second book:

This one is a humorous, scary and, as the title suggests, cautionary tale about my very first, impossibly naive, real estate purchase. And it is illustrated!

Think of it as the antidote to all the hype around home buying. As Kristy Shen promises in her wonderful foreword for it:

“Some of you are going to hate this book.”

Lookin’ at you here Bob, Bob, Ethan and Anonymous. 


In addition to my own book, I recently finished rereading Lonesome Dove, all 820 pages of it.

This is one of my all time favorite fiction books. As I opened it, I remember thinking: “I have 820 pages of wonderful reading ahead.” And then it was over. Too short.

That put me in mind of another I reread earlier this year, this one for the third time:

With those two in mind, of course I thought of another favorite, which is on my table ready for another read:

I might be failing to remember some others but sitting here just now, these are my three all time favorite fiction books.



Guess what I just finally read for the first time… is written by jlcollinsnh for


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