Chris Guillebeau is a New York Times bestselling author and modern-day explorer.
He visited every country in the world (193 in total) before his 35th birthday. Since then he has modeled the proven definition of an entrepreneur: “Someone who will work 24 hours a day for themselves to avoid working one hour a day for someone else”.
Chris blog is called The Art of Non-Conformity, although it is hosted on the ChrisGuillebeau.com domain name. Chris started this blog to chronicle his journey to every country in the world—but it’s since grown into a hub for original thinking. The purpose of AONC is to share the story of how to change the world by achieving personal goals while helping others at the same time.
He has shared his lessons with creating both the blog and brand.
Building Influence to Gain Widespread Authority A more advanced look at how Chris built the AONC site into a diverse community during the first year.
The Art Of Non-Conformity
In 2019, he announced that he had gotten a book deal after 6 months of looking for a publisher. He explored the process in Going Pro: Book News and Other Gratitude Notes.
Chris’ debut book debut book was based on the original ideas from his blog, but 95% of the material was completely new. He did a large book tour to promote it, traveling to 63 cities in North America (every state and every province) to meet readers. It was eventually translated into more than 20 languages.
The original website for the original book tour is still live. On it, Chris shared:
Chris identified 1,500 individuals who have built businesses earning $50,000 or more from a modest investment (in many cases, $100 or less), and focused on the 50 most intriguing case studies. In nearly all cases, people with no special skills discovered aspects of their personal passions that could be monetized, and were able to restructure their lives in ways that gave them greater freedom and fulfillment.
This book became a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller, selling more than 500,000 copies worldwide.
He shared the process behind the books creation at Beginnings, Process, and the Calm Before the Storm. He spoke more creating the book in this podcast on Smart Passive Income.
Happiness Of Pursuit
In The Happiness of Pursuit, Chris draws on interviews with hundreds of questers, revealing their secret motivations, their selection criteria, the role played by friends and family, their tricks for solving logistics, and the importance of documentation. Equally fascinating is Chris’s examination of questing’s other side. What happens after the summit is climbed, the painting hung, the endurance record broken, the at-risk community saved?
The book also became a New York Times bestseller.
Born For This
Born For This debuted on April 5, 2016. It was the culmination of years of research on people who’ve found or created their “dream job.” From the outside, it looks like these people have been lucky. But in reality, they’ve followed a process of trial-and-error to get exactly what they want.
Like with previous books, he did a book tour. He wrote about it at:
- Reflections at the End of a 30-City Tour (At Least For Now)
- Life and Adventures on Book Tour: Part I
- Life and Adventures on Book Tour: Part 2
His seventh book, The Money Tree, was released in April 2020. The Money Tree ‘tells a story of using simple principles to create a new source of income in a short period of time. By using your existing skills and spending as little startup capital as possible, you can learn to dig your way to the fortune in your own backyard.’
He has a page on the book website dedicated to the history of the money tree.
His first free ebook, the Brief Guide to World Domination, was read by more than 100,000 people in 60 countries during the first six months. He wrote about how to take over the world while helping others at the same time.
The sequel, 279 Days to Overnight Success, explored how to create a full-time career as a writer in less than one year. It provides a case study for anyone interested in building an alternative career using new media.
Side Hustle School
Chris launched the Side Hustle School project in 2017. It’s a daily podcast, a travelling workshop series, and two books — all designed to help you create a new source of income without quitting your job. The podcast is downloaded more than 2 million times a month.
He wrote more about the podcast creation journey in 9 Life Lessons from Starting a Daily Podcast.
It quickly grew into a book and workshop series. He shared his initial experiences running the workshops at Reporting Back on the First Set of Side Hustle Workshops.
You learn more about how he created the project in this Mixergy podcast.
He also published two books about side hustles:
- Side Hustle: From Idea to Income in 27 Days
- 100 Side Hustles: Unexpected Ideas for Making Extra Money Without Quitting Your Day Job
He also did a large tour for his second book. He shared more in 500 Memories from the 100 SIDE HUSTLES Tour.
Learn more at Side Hustle School.
World Domination Summit
In 2011 he founded WDS, a global gathering for remarkable people of all kinds. I remember when this first launched. The buzz surrounding it was so huge; much larger in my community than many marketing conferences.
You can see a some of the videos from the events at the World Domination Summit Youtube channel.
At the 2012 event, they gave the attendees $100 to put towards their own projects.
The only other recap Chris did was WDS 2013: A Partial (and Impartial) Recap. The following years summarized the audiences recaps.
Unconventional Guides was a non-traditional publisher of lifestyle guides on travel, self-employment, and living your best life. They sold ebooks from 2008-2019, serving more than 25,000 customers. Here are some of the top posts by Chris about creating products:
- ART AND MONEY FEEDBACK, Q&A, LESSONS LEARNED
- BEHIND THE SCENES OF THE “UNCONVENTIONAL GUIDE TO PUBLISHING” LAUNCH
- PRODUCT LAUNCH 101
Empire building kit
The Empire Building Kit was a digital course. It included 15 integrated case studies in several media formats, additional modules of instruction, and a series of emails—one a day for a year.
He decided to launch the project from the Empire Builder train, with the new Empire Builder bag, on my birthday, for 24 hours only on a trip coming back from Africa.
He wrote about how he developed the idea for the trip at On Synchronicity and the Building of Empires.
He also did a daily blog about the trip.
- EBK Day 1: Happy Easter from Pittsburgh
- EBK Day 2: What the Empire Building Kit Is All About
- EBK Day 3: “All Aboard the Empire Builder”
- EBK Day 4, Part II: Live from Amtrak’s “Bloggers’ Lounge”
- EBK Day 5 Update: Home Where the Light Is
In 2013, Chris launched a year-long, intensive course focused entirely on taking regular action. He wrote about the beta launch at Beta Launch of Adventure Capital.
He wrote about what he’d learned launching the project at Product Launch Lessons from Adventure Capital
In Spring 2014 and Fall 2015, Chris held a smaller event targeted at independent entrepreneurs, small business owners, and freelancers.
April 4th isn’t his birthday.
He has ADHD. He has written about taking Adderall as an adult.
- Writing With Adderall: A Personal Case Study
- One Year of Taking Adderall to Help with Writing & Focus