I've been having a fun few months of missed notifications/emails in some form or another.
A few weeks ago, I realized I messed up something with my domain and emails to [email protected] weren't arriving. Explained why my inbox was being particularly quiet! (This has been fixed.)
Well ALSO... I thought my book sales through my website plummeted in the last month. I wasn't getting any email notifications of sales, and actually was one of my motivating factors behind launching this Patreon ("egads, how will I make rent?!")
Last week I got the weekly rundown email from Gumroad (the system I use to sell books on my website) and realized it said I sold a paperback book. What? When? I need to be on top of those because I need to ship the book and I didn't receive any notification email of the sale on the day it said it was sold.
At first I raged as I thought it was related to my previous email problem, but after some investigation, looks like Gmail is selectively hiding some Gumroad emails. No, they're not in spam. Maybe something to do with blocking Gumroad's mail server IPs.
So, hey! It's not my fault! I can stop being so down on myself for a lack of sales since it turns out I've still been making sales!
Buuuut this has definitely motivated to work double-time on the new Hello Web Books website, where I was already replacing Gumroad with a custom Stripe integration, so I don't have to worry about outside services breaking in quiet ways.
(I should be clear that I'm not really mad at Gumroad (though their normal support was less than useful or apologetic. Sahil, the founder, contacted me on Twitter and was much more helpful.) I'm glad I was able to use them successfully for so many years.)
And (crossing fingers), the new website should launch next week!
Let's see some screenshots!
The new book dashboard that readers will get access to after buying:
The book content page, if you have the videos included:
The content area, if you don't have videos included:
You can also buy my books/videos as a gift for others:
And the new order page, using Stripe Checkout v1:
This has been a fun project! I still don't think it was the best use of my time as everything was mostly working (other than missing Gumroad sale notification emails.) But this coding project helped drag me out of some signification depression and has motivated me to work again. 🎉
So if all goes to plan, I'm spending the rest of the week figuring out how to onboard folks onto the new system, fix the rest of the small bugs, and figure out my deployment plan, so it's up by early next week.
There are a lot of big things I want to work on after launching (I really want dedicated landing page URLs a la Wes Bos, so hellowebapp.com is the HWA landing page, hellowebdesignbook.com is the HWD landing page, etc.)
But (omg broken record) I will BE WORKING ON THE GIT ZINE FIRST by golly. I gotta get this MVP super website up so I start getting payment notifications again, and then the zine(s). I promise.
Thanks for following the story and hope you enjoyed the progress shots!