Some harsh-but-true words about “bestselling books”

Please welcome back my wonderful, straight-talking friend and colleague from Toronto, Tsufit – who has some startling and true words to say about “bestselling authors,” as I have on more than one occasion. Because it’s so easy to manipulate the system with online book sales, the perceived value of being a bestselling author is shrinking by the day. Over to Tsufit

photo of Tsufit

“Put a brick between 2 covers, add endorsements & great title; it’ll sell.” Tsufit

“You can take a BRICK, slap it between a provocative front and back cover with a great title, add some strong endorsements and your book will sell.”

That’s exactly what I told the participants in my Book Creation Workshop the first time I ran it a few years ago.

It’s certainly not something I recommend or teach. Write a cool book!

I was just trying to make a point about the importance of a good title and cover and great endorsements.

About the brick, I was joking. Almost…

Turns out I was righter than I thought!

Enter entrepreneur and marketer, Brent Underwood, who was frustrated (or perhaps amused) by the fact that any Tom, Dick or Harry can claim to be a best-selling author nowadays.

To prove his point, Brent took a photo of his left foot, made it into a book cover, slapped on a title, Putting My Foot Down, and uploaded his new 1 page book to Amazon.

putting foot down - new book

Best-seller status is (now) B.S. thanks to the cheats

You get to choose categories on Amazon, so he chose a couple where there wasn’t likely to be much competition.

One of the categories he chose was Freemasonry–not a ton of competition.

He got his Mom to buy 2 copies and by the time the 3rd copy was sold, Brent Underwood was an Amazon best-selling author, as proven by the orange “Amazon Best-Seller” label Amazon put up next to his book.

Result, this story has received international attention; he’s got attention from The New York Times, Publisher’s Weekly, The Paris Review and it looks like there may be a “real book” in the works based on this story.

Note from Suze: have a browse through some of the reviews this book got on Amazon. com – hilarious.

So… moral of the story time… (You choose.)

  1. A) Truth is stranger than fiction
  2. B) Best-Seller status is B.S.
  3. C) Creative irreverent action can attract international publicity
  4. D) Put a brick between 2 covers, add endorsements & great title; it’ll sell.
  5. E) All of the above
  6. F) Other ______________(Send me your response via the comments below.)

Folks, you can sell anything so long as you learn how to focus the spotlight on it.
Author, Step Into The Spotlight!

photo 2 of Tsufit


© Tsufit 2006-2019 Reprinted with permission from Tsufit’s Spotlight Secrets series.
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TSUFIT is the author of the Award Winning Book, Step Into The Spotlight!
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