A lot has changed since we first started Libboo back in 2007; for a start we’ve gone from Chris and I working in our spare time to a team of 8 people. We’ve been through the MassChallenge and Techstars accelerator programs, both of which have significantly improved us as a team, the focus of the company, and the reach of our network.  Then there is the more than $1M that we have raised to keep us working, developing, and refining what we have.

So now we’ve released our pilot, the result of a pivot, where we fundamentally changed what we were doing, and how we were doing it. We realized that although some people had trouble writing books, it wasn’t the main issue they were facing. The main issue is they had trouble getting discovered, and that’s a problem that nobody has been able to solve yet.

How it started

Back in 2007 Chris and I started working on an idea in our spare time. The idea was for a website where a user could write and publish their books online, a problem that no one had satisfactorily solved back in 2007.

We met up in the evenings and on weekends, and started to work out how we could solve the problem.  The process started slowly; we didn’t have a lot of time, and we were learning the programming languages we were building in as we went. Our skills improved, and so did our speed and the accuracy in which we worked.

Over the next year and a half we put in more and more time, while still working alongside our jobs.  We were attempting to get the site in a state where we could show people, and finally finished the first alpha version of our product in mid 2009. It took us a long time, and the end result in comparison to the current Libboo was terrible, but that wasn’t important.

We had committed ourselves the project, we had put in time and energy, and we had successfully created a product that could potentially solve the problem. More importantly, we had managed to pass the first hurdle that many others fail on: actually getting something out.