I joined DD in 2014, after being a member of the Erotica Author Forum. At that time, I had lost my job, but wasn't in dire straits, with freelance work lined up. I had the luxury of trying and failing a few billion times. Each time, many members of DD were helpful enough to tell me what I was doing wrong and how I could improve.
I didn't actually listen until 2015, when my freelance work dried up and I was suddenly in the position of having to pay for two incomes. Fast. $5k/month was my target, to pay for living costs, medical bills, and still have enough to pay off debts and not live paycheck to paycheck.
The information on DD was there all along. Repeated ad nauseam in thread after thread of successful people who were willing to lend their time and experience to help people like me. When I joined a collaborative penname - one of the amazing group projects found on DD - I finally started to get it. In May of 2015, before I joined a group name, I made $300. The next month, I made $1700. My income has grown every month since. In January of 2016, I started a new penname and made almost $12,000.
It's all because of DD. Through DD I picked up no-nonsense business advice that helped me buckle down and start to earn a full-time income. I learned productivity exercises that have helped me write up to 10k words in a day. I learned how to analyze the market and write to it, stacking the odds in my favor to be able to have a brand new release get into the top 100 of the Amazon store.
And that's not even counting the incredible people I've met here. They say if you want to be successful, you need to surround yourself with successful people. Before I came here, I was surrounded by writers who wanted to make it big, but weren't willing to put in the work. Writers who were looking for some magic solution.
There is no magic solution. If you came here looking for one, just turn back now. But the hard-working community of DD proves, month in and month out, that if you put in the time, the effort, and the willingness to learn from your mistakes, you can succeed.