Last Updated on June 20, 2021 by Ava
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Welcome, welcome Cashflow Nation to this very special Season 1 wrap-up of The Candid Cashflow Podcast! We are finally to the last episode of 2018. When we speak again, a New Year will have dawned. I hope all the best for you in 2019!
Joining me today is Dale L. Roberts, the quintessential knowledge base in all things self-publishing! I’ve been working with Dale for almost 2 years now, and he’s not only my client, but he’s also my good friend!
In the past few years, Dale has built one of the most stellar online communities that I’ve ever had the privilege to be a part of. This guy really made me see that birds of a feather collect together. Good people draw in other good people, and what you end up with an unstoppable group of people doing big things and helping each other.
One of my favorite things about Dale is that he really goes out of his way to highlight people in his community and make everyone feel equally important. He is accessible to his community and has formed many genuine friendships with the members therein.
The community a person is able to build really says a lot about the character and integrity of that person.
Sure, Dale draws a great crowd of people, but the reason behind that is also important.
I would be hard-pressed to find anyone online or off who knows more about the self-publishing industry than Dale. He has made it his business to be in the know. When changes happen, he usually knows first and is informing his audience before anyone else.
I would venture to say that there are others in the industry who look to Dale to get the breaking news for their own people.
At the foundation of all that community and knowledge is a guy who is in the game because he genuinely wants to help people and is passionate about books.
I am thankful every day that God brought Dale into my life and I’m honored to present this interview when I sat down with Dale to talk self-publishing, wrestling, resources, and what’s coming in 2019.
I have to preface this episode with an explanation of the inside joke…when I did my first cut of Dale’s intro, I called him Dan. I had been on a quick store run and realized standing in the checkout line that I was 15 minutes from this call. Needless to say, I was a bit rushed. That coupled with live calls residing outside my comfort zone, I was a bit tongue-tied. I’ve talked to Dale countless times and we communicate multiple times on a weekly basis, so this was a bit embarrassing. I just wanted to make sure you were all in on the inside joke.
Before we jump in…a quick word from our sponsor:
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Without further ado!
How Dale L. Roberts Got Into Self-Publishing
Before Dale got into self-publishing, he did a lot of different things. He worked as a personal trainer, activities director at a nursing home, and there was also a smattering of wrestling in there!
Dale actually went to college to become a writer. He was majoring in journalism and minoring in English. He made it about a year and a half until he decided he just didn’t need college and he walked away from being an author.
Sometime later, around 2014, he self-published his first book. He made a little more than 20 bucks his first payday from that book, and he quit his day job…probably a bit prematurely.
He moved forward draining a small nest egg. He and his wife, Kelli, spent a year on Ramen noodles and frozen veggies while Dale tried to figure out his place.
Dale immersed himself in learning EVERY aspect of self-publishing. He watched videos, bought courses, and hired a coach all the while knowing he wasn’t cut out for going back to the 9 to 5 rat race.
As a creative individual, self-publishing allows Dale to express himself and do one of the biggest things that he finds most fulfilling: help other people.
Dale said, “One of my greatest highs is helping people achieve lifelong dreams.”
He describes what he does as curating information. He loves to figure out what is fact and what is fiction. He likes to break things, make mistakes, and share those findings with his audience to help them do it better.
Dale got into self-publishing because he is passionate about books and literature. For him, it’s not a just a money-making venture, but a passion project. He loves the business!
Dale’s been tried in the fire of Ramen noodles and veggies. He’s been at the bottom and climbed his way to the top so that he could share his experiences, his failures, and his successes with YOU.
Dale Was a Wrestler?
Dale has worn many hats, but the wrestling one always stops traffic!
As an adult, Dale fell in love with a sport that was larger than life. It was ultimately wrestling that made Dale fall in love with health and fitness. Many of you may not know that Dale found success in self-publishing first writing and publishing fitness-related books.
The thing that people often miss about pro wrestling is that it’s story-telling at it’s finest. It’s stunt work with a storyline. Much like you’d go to the theater to be entertained, wrestling is entertainment. The health and fitness aspects were great, but it was really the story-telling that drew Dale in.
Dale became obsessed with wrestling and actually went to Calgary to train with a former WWE star, Lance Storm, for 3 months. He was all in.
For 2 years, he pushed his body to the max in the gym and went to every independent show he could with or without pay.
In 2008, all of that ended when he blew out his back. At that point, he had to reaccess where he was going and he decided then that he couldn’t continue in his current path.
He could still be passionate about wrestling without being a participant. He dabbled a bit with announcing, but in 2011, he moved to Arizona and that was the end of wrestling for him.
One of his huge takeaways from the wrestling business was the ability to communicate well.
When Did Dale First Realize Self-Publishing Was Something He Wanted to Do?
When Dale was employed, he had a corporate wellness coach who suggested that he carry over his passion for fitness into writing a book. Dale always new that self-publishing existed, but it was this thing that had a stigma to it. It was like your weird uncle who had a garage full of books he’d self-published that he was always giving as Christmas gifts.
So, when Dale got into self-publishing, that’s kind of how he viewed it. He’d have a book to hand out to his friends and family. It was never about making money in the beginning.
As he got further into it and got some estimates from local printers, he realized he couldn’t justify the expense of the print run. He just kept investigating different printers online until he stumbled upon CreateSpace.
That’s when a whole new world was exposed to him. He could publish and it would be on Amazon. He realized millions of people would have access to his book and that’s when he fell into the self-publishing rabbit hole completely.
Dale’s Favorite Aspect of the Self-Publishing Business
Dale answered without hesitation, “There’s so many, but probably creatively expressing myself.”
He said that probably sounds crazy coming from a non-fiction writer, but anytime you are writing, there is a creative aspect to the process.
Explaining Self-Publishing to a Newbie
“If you’re interested in writing and publishing books and you’d like to eventually land a traditional publishing deal, then self-publishing is for you,” he answered after just a few seconds of thought.
Is Self-Publishing Still Viable Going Into 2019?
The technology is the reason why self-publishing is where it is today. This is the reason Dale is such a proponent and advocate for becoming an indie author. Everything is so accessible!
If you have the imagination, resiliency, and technology at your disposal then self-publishing is a huge opportunity and it’s only going to get better!
Look how accessible audiobooks are now. Remember back in the day when audiobooks were this huge case thing of several cassette tapes. Now we have digital downloads!
If you have a decent smartphone, you can record your own audiobook anywhere. While we wouldn’t suggest doing so, it’s right there, and it’s only going to get better!
People want to use the word “saturation” to say self-publishing isn’t viable, but there are billions and billions of people in this world. Saturation doesn’t exist in this business!
What Makes Dale Stick With Self-Publishing Rather Than Using as a Stepping Stone to the Next Big Thing?
Dale credits his love of literature with his continued interest in the self-publishing business. He loves to see an entire day melt by with a good book.
Other entrepreneurs who have come and gone in this business were passionate about the income it provided, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but to build it up and just dispose of it, is egregious on their part.
You can work self-publishing as a long-term business model to grow your brand. It’s more scalable then people give it credit for.
What Can We Look Forward to From Self-Publishing With Dale in 2019?
“All I see right now when it comes to self-publishing is the rise of the audiobook,” Dale said.
He’s been trumpeting this for 2 years now informing his audience that audiobooks are huge and they’re only getting bigger.
People are finally starting to take notice, but they are also learning it’s not as easy as print books. However, as technology continues to evolve, that will be less of a concern.
What it’s really all going to be about is building a brand. Branding is huge. Being an author isn’t just about writing and publishing a book. It’s about creating a brand. You’re not just an author, you’re a brand. You are the person solely responsible for communicating your purpose.
Resource Name Drop
Dale has an affiliate relationship with many of his recommendations, but that’s not something he takes lightly. The resources he recommends here are ones that he’s been using a while himself and highly recommends.
In order of emphasis and importance to Dale (Also, these are his affiliate links so if you’d like to toss him some support, that’d be great!):
- Grammarly – spelling and grammar checker – The nice thing about Grammarly is it spellchecks and grammar checks your social media and writing on other platforms automatically. They have both free and premium models.
- KDP Rocket – keyword and niche research tool from the Kindlepreneur himself, Dave Chesson. This one is a HUGE time-saver!
- YouTube! – simply for the learning aspect of the platform. You can learn how to do almost anything FREE! Dale learned live-streaming via YouTube
Why Would You Tell Someone NOT to Get Into Self-Publishing?
“If you’re getting into self-publishing to make some quick cash, this is the wrong business,” Dale offered without hesitation.
You can get faster money from a 9 to 5 job. You’ll hear a lot of success stories online, but don’t get swept up in the hype. The people making $20K in their first 90 days, are the exceptions, not the rules. They’re the unicorns.
Dale has met literally thousands of aspiring authors and self-publishers who have barely made $500 in the course of a year. The average amount indie authors make in a year is insanely low.
Dale’s Take on the Low/No Content Phenomenon
Dale’s been playing around with this for the last couple years, and it’s a significant income. “Hopefully, your listeners have heard your interview with my wife, Kelli Publish. If not, go back and listen to that episode and take notes,” Dale implores.
Low/No content books are essentially books that don’t require the burden of having to write the books.
Low/No content books include something as simple as a diary or notebook or it could be a puzzle book. A lot of people forget that picture books also fit into this category.
A lot of people get excited about low/no content books, but just like any other aspect of self-publishing, it’s not a get rich quick scheme.
It’s going to take a lot of patience, creativity, and resilience to succeed.
Dale would personally rather write a book any day!
Dale’s YouTube Channel Recommendations
Knowing that Dale consumes a ton of YouTube, I asked him for 3 channels that he would recommend to the Cashflow Nation, and these were his answers:
- Nick Nimmin – channel based on making YouTube content
- WrestleTalk – Dale modeled his early thumbnails after this channel
- This one varies from one month to the next…this month…it’s BookLaunchers.
When Should Publishers Hire an Assistant?
Think about it in terms of discretionary expenses vs. discretionary time.
If you’re brand new to this business, which do you have more of? If you have a job, kids, and a lot of extracurricular activities, then you want to think about what you can delegate. You should not hire an assistant if you don’t have the money.
You’re ready to hire if you’ve broken the 4-figure mark. From there, you need to determine what you’re strongest at and hire those things out.
Dale admits he’s not great at web development and podcast platforms, so those are two things he has me handle for him. Just general advice, take 10% of your earnings over a 3-month period of time and set it aside. That’s the money you’re going to use to hire out the things you just don’t have the time or knowledge to do.
If you hate writing ad copy, hire a copywriter, if you hate formatting, hire out formatting.
Where Cashflow Nation Can Find Dale Online
- SelfPublishingwithDale.com – You can get all the following links at this one spot!
- Facebook Group
Dale’s Number One Tip for Cashflow Nation
“Do what you love and love what you do!”
That’s a Wrap!
I hope y’all enjoyed this episode as much as I did making it! Dale is such a dear friend and all around nice guy! I urge you if you are into self-publishing to follow Dale, join his Facebook Group, and meet the great community he’s drawn to himself! It has changed my life!
Don’t miss these Season 1 Outtakes!
Please consider subscribing to The Candid Cashflow Podcast because I have GREAT plans for the coming year, and I’d love for you to be a part of it. Find us in your favorite listening app by visiting HeyYoAva.com/candidcashflow.
Connect with the Cashflow Nation on Facebook! Now is the time to join the Group as a founding member and help us create a wonderful community that helps each other with tips and resources to get financially free at HeyYoAva.com/facebook.
To you and yours, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and blessed New Year.
Remember, we release a new episode each Wednesday!
Until next year, turning your passion into cashflow!