Indie Publishing Course Review: Publish and Thrive by Heart Breathings

On July 27th, 2020 I joined the affiliate program to promote Heart Breathing’s Publish and Thrive course. The below review is my honest opinion of the course that I completed in Spring 2020. All the below opinions of the course are my own and I did not receive monetary compensation to write this review. I will, however, receive a commission for any course registrations that occur by using the sign-up link I provide in this post.

Back in late January, I had a terrible, on-the-verge-of-mental-breakdown kind of day. Even after dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic for months, I still count that day as one of the worst of 2020. Nothing was going right at work, people were being hateful to me for reasons I had no control over, and I was wrapped up in the comparison game when it came to my author career.

Y’all know the drill… the comparison game. Where you notice a new author who writes in the same genre as you emerge one moment and skyrocket the next, their first book outselling all of yours combined within the matter of a month? Where they get to do the author thing full time and live your wildest dreams working from home? While you’ve been at the same game working your tail off for three years and have to settle on your author career being part-time until you can make a full-time profit from it?

I. Was. Miserable.

But, it was on that terrible day in January that I remembered something I had seen on YouTube just a few days prior: Sarra Cannon (Channel: Heart Breathings), one of my favorite AuthorTubers, was opening her Publish and Thrive course up for registration. I had heard of Publish and Thrive from the first session she ran, but didn’t even look into it then because I assumed it would be too expensive.

This go around, I was so fed up with my current situation that I wanted to spark a change in my life. I’m not normally a big spender, but I looked up the price. Though the price tag stung a little, I considered the course enrollment an investment. I asked family and my fiance if they thought it would be worth the money if I was investing in my future. They agreed.

So, now that I’ve completed Publish and Thrive, can I still say it was worth the investment?

Value for the Price

Okay, so the course fee is a big commitment. Trust me, my hands were shaking as I entered my payment information. Buying the course was not a financial decision I made lightly, but I have found the course to be a worthwhile investment.

When you enroll in Publish and Thrive, you inherit lifetime access to the course. This means that you will have unlimited access to the five course modules, printables, documents, and members-only Facebook group for the life of the course. As Sarra goes back and updates the course, you will receive those updates and be able to watch them when you please. You can also go back and retake the class along with future sessions for no additional cost.

Each week, Sarra does a two-hour Facebook Live within the Publish and Thrive Facebook group to go over any questions for the week’s module. She also allows students to email her with publishing questions that may be too personal to ask within the group.

While $400 isn’t cheap, Publish and Thrive is less expensive than other indie publishing courses I’ve come across that do not have lifetime access. The course also goes over all aspects of indie publishing rather than niche subjects like marketing or uploading to the vendors. Whether you’re new to self publishing or would like more tips and tricks for your career, Publish and Thrive is a great resource.

Value of the Course Material

As I mentioned earlier, Publish and Thrive has five modules:

  • Module 1: Gearing Up for Success (a basic overview of self publishing)
  • Module 2: Publishing Your Books
  • Module 3: Running Your Writing Business
  • Module 4: Marketing Your Books
  • Module 5: Creating Success That Lasts

In each module, Sarra provides videos going in-depth on each topic and explaining what some of the best practices are for each. Being an indie author for almost a decade now, Sarra has sold three quarters of a million books in her tenure. She has been in the self publishing game from the Wild West-like beginnings of the industry and has found tried and true methods for success, methods she uses herself.

My favorite part about the course material is that while Sarra shares her experiences, she reminds students that there is no One Path to success. Each and every indie author can find success in different ways. I found Sarra’s ideology on this refreshing compared to other self-publishing instructors who claim you have to do A. B. and C. in order to have a successful career.

Sarra is also very conscientious of going about self publishing practices the right way, both legally and ethically. She is apt to remind students not to find loopholes in vendors’ guidelines and to always follow the rules of legal business conduct. I promise you, she will guide you in setting up your author business the right way, not the easy way. And that’s worth so much more than those “get rich quick” publishing schemes.

One of the most important aspects of Publish and Thrive that I have never heard of being offered in another publishing course is that Sarra dedicates the entire last module to creating a strong mentality for success as an indie author. Videos in this module offer advice on battling comparison, handling criticism, and getting yourself organized to take on the stress of indie publishing. It is by far one of the most helpful, and motivating, modules and I can’t recommend it enough to new and emerging authors.


While I don’t want to give away too much about the course material, I will say that it has taught me a tremendous amount about indie publishing. Despite having been an indie author and having published two books before taking the class, I have learned new techniques and have realized where I had set myself up for failure on past books.

The Bottom Line: Has Publish and Thrive allowed me to become a full-time author?

Sadly, no. But we can’t pin the financial success (or lack thereof) on my author career on this course.

Just taking the course won’t turn your writing career into an overnight success. You won’t suddenly earn millions, or even thousands, once you start implementing what you’ve learned. If you’re like me and have some past mistakes to fix, or haven’t had a book out in a while, it can take even longer.

But, I will say this: Based on what I learned, I have made better decisions for my author career going forward. And despite not making a lot of money self publishing, I have sold an increased amount of my backlist titles (the newest release being almost two years old) compared to where I was last year with little promotion. Coincidence, I think not.

I plan to release my next book, The Crush, in October, and will try to keep track of how what I’ve learned from the course affects its release. I have a feeling, however, that it will be the best release yet.

Talk to Me, Arrowheads!

Have you taken Publish and Thrive? What did you think of the course?

If you’re interested in learning more about the course, check it out here! Enrollment is open until July 30th, 2022, so be sure to join soon!

As of July 27, 2020, I am a registered affiliate of the Publish and Thrive course and will receive commission for any sign-ups that are garnered from the course link I shared. Again, I was not paid to write the course review, and it is derived from my honest opinion of the course.

Aim high, stay strong, and always hit your mark.

-Allyson 😀

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As an author and blogger, my goal is to teach writers that there is a way to write realistic, thought-provoking, redemptive Christian fiction that honors God while not sugarcoating the realities of the world. 

7 thoughts on “Indie Publishing Course Review: Publish and Thrive by Heart Breathings

  1. Interesting class! Yes I would love a class, blog or book filled with authors who can share their experiences. I write books for the joy and relize that the most important part of success is mastery over the mind. Mindset is everything. I admit that I need help in this area. I am investing my time reading about authors and artists who can help me strengthen my mind. I like this post and I should go find some articles on Stephen King and his writing.

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  2. The course may not help you sell huge amounts of books, but you made the right decision, Allyson. I made a really stupid decision to have 1,000 copies of my first novel Battle of the Band printed…I knew the decision was hare-brained because I knew I’d likely never sell anywhere near 1,000 copies living in a rural remote area 150+ miles away from the nearest large city (El Paso). But I am glad I did it anyway. A case of 55 books was donated to a homeless shelter (so the homeless could have a free book to read) and I may send away more. Some of the cases of books now support bookshelves. Plus in 2018 I finally broke even financially on the cost of printing those books (in 1996 mind you…we had no internet then). I have sold roughly 250 copies of this book. Spent about $2500 to print them (that is, $10 per book–and also spent about $600 on the next book, 100 copies, sold at about $14 a book and sold about 50 copies, small profit made). So I learned my lesson.

    That is why an author does things that may or may not work out–to learn their lessons! If you don’t try things out you’ll never know. Hope the course works for you.

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