Happiness in Making the Bestseller Lists

Jason Vitug
4 min readFeb 5, 2023

My book was released on February 1, 2023.

On the first day, it became a Barnes & Noble Bestseller. As the first week ended, Happy Money Happy Life began charting in 2 Amazon categories: Business & Finance and Personal Finance & Money Management. The book eventually became a #1 Best New Release too. I also saw it becoming a Bookshop.org best-selling title.

Happy Money Happy Life Barnes & Noble Bestseller

I’m beyond grateful for the support people have given me. It’s a great feeling to know what I’ve written is resonating with people (albeit I haven’t actually seen a review yet).

Happy Money Happy Life #1 Best New Release

If you’ve followed my social posts, you would know this has been quite a journey. My publisher experienced supply chain distribution issues and bookstores weren’t getting the needed copies. Basically, my hope of hitting the “big-time” bestseller lists was dashed.

“If we can’t get the books to the bookstores, there are no books for them to sell. Therefore, no book sales to report.”

I was disheartened and deflated but not defeated.

So, I focused on what I could control: continue to get the book out into the hands of as many people as possible. I wrote a 25-page plan from online marketing to social posts to independent bookstore signings.

But, learning that many bookstores couldn’t get copies of my book continued to affect me. It felt like I was punched in the gut and hit in the knees. It made everything more challenging.

Then, I discovered people who preordered on Amazon weren’t going to get their books on release day. Their books would arrive 2–3 weeks later. How does that happen? I still don’t have the answers.

It was also frustrating to hear from readers their book orders were being canceled by the retailers they bought them through. I had two people at my book celebration party who showed me their canceled orders.

Happy Money Happy Life would eventually be sold out in Target and out of stock in Walmart.

Others have shared that Barnes & Noble is telling them they have limited supplies, and Books-a-million has no more in stock (but posted they’ll have more coming soon in 2–4 weeks).

And the independent bookstore owners that I am working with can’t get access to the books.

It’s on backorder. None are available through their distributors.

I don’t know what this all means because none of this means I’ve sold millions of copies. I don’t have hard numbers yet.

Jason Vitug reciting the spoken word found in Happy Money Happy Life

And I wish I could say the bestseller lists don’t matter, but it does in a crowded market. Getting onto the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller helps to elevate the book. It will be seen by many more people. My message of joy, wellness, and happiness will reach so many more.

This is the reason why the lists matter to me. It’s not for vanity, but for exponential impact.

It helps in reaching those who don’t even know I exist (and they are the majority) who may need this book.

This has been a different experience from my first book, You Only Live Once. That book did well, too, but I was a relatively unknown first-time author.

Family, friends, readers, and fans celebrate the release

With my happiness book, there’s a need for this in the market. People are looking for ways to have more joy and happiness in a world filled with so much sadness. I want this book in as many people’s hands and perhaps we’ll get better at anticipating demand and getting the books into the bookstores so they’ll have copies.

If you’re wondering what Happy Money Happy Life is about: it’s a book on happiness that happens to talk about money and how to use it as a tool to improve your wellbeing. In the book, I share 8 wellness dimensions: mental, emotional, physical, spiritual, social, environmental, occupational, and financial.


Hi, I’m Jason, author with a second book releasing on February 1, 2023–Happy Money Happy Life: A Multidimensional Approach to Health, Wealth and Financial Wellbeing. In the book, I discuss your eight dimensions of wellness (mental, emotional, physical, spiritual, social, environmental, occupational, and financial) through the lens of money.

Make a choice today and get yourself a copy of Happy Money Happy Life. More details can be found here: https://www.phroogal.com/happy

Support local independent bookstores through Bookshop.org: https://bookshop.org/a/86952/9781394171262

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3QLM89Y



Jason Vitug

Happiness and wellness advocate. Founder phroogal.com, creator Road to Financial Wellness. Preorder Happy Money Happy Life > https://www.phroogal.com/happy