Introducing Mike Pettit, Author Extraordinaire

One of the most fascinating people I have met online is Mike Pettit. His  nightly “Goodnight America” is worth waiting for. His books covers are wonderfully nostalgic, reminding us of an earlier age of publishing. His  comments are a bit too amusing to be truthful (except for his political  comments, which are a bit too truthful to be amusing.) I’ve wanted to interview Mike for a long time for my interview blog, and he has finally agreed to answer some of my questions. Below is an excerpt from the interview, outlining Mike’s Three P Plan for selling books. (You can find the entire interview here: Mike Pettit, Bestselling Author of “The Key West Smackdown.” I hope you stop by to read the interview. You won’t be sorry you did.)

PB. Do you ever feel like you are lost among the thousands of other Kindle authors?

MP. Absolutely not. I treat my writing as a business. Here are my steps to selling books. I call it the Three P Plan (I should publish this and make a fortune…oh wait, that’s been done).

PRODUCT: Write the best book you can, edit the best you can, have the best cover you can.

I consider myself a good storyteller, but I am not a five star writer. If stars were grade averages I would be a C+ or B- writer, and that‘s OK. So, be realistic with your expectations. Average authors sell books, trust me.

I use the Flisch-Kinkaid comprehension scoring method to determine my writing / reader comprehension. I write to a reading audience at the 8th to 10th grade level of comprehension. This by the way is what the F-K scoring states as the reading level of most fiction-reading adults in America today. As a comparison, Obama’s State of the Union address was written to the 7th grade level of comprehension, The Wall Street Journal just dropped their Comprehension level from 12th grade to 10th grade level.

It might make you feel better knowing this the next time someone writes a bad review on your baby and gives it a two-star D rating. This does not mean you did badly. It means the reader should have read something on a higher comprehension level. That’s why I say you must know your audience …and write to them.

PRICING: To thine own self be true. You must price your book at a reasonable price. The big guys that work for the Big Six publishing houses command $25.00 and up per pop. That’s nuts, but they get it.

E publishing is growing with more and more readers coming over to the light, soon the big publishing houses and agents will be begging for us little guys to sign up with them.

My strategy is that I write and price my books to fit my audience. I am not greedy nor am I swollen headed. I know that I am a C+ writer and what I have to offer is a damn good quick read for a couple of bucks. The reader is happy with the read and the price and he’ll come back for more. You’ll make your money on volume sales

PUBLIC RELATIONS / MARKETING: Never stop pushing your book. I sell on Kindle and Nook. I use every social network platform I can find. I have Face Book, Twitter, Google +, a large FB and Twitter friend base. Look for “Friends that fit your target audience and talk to them…constantly.

This is just me, but I don’t spend a lot of time talking with other authors. If you aren’t talking to your customers, someone else is.

***

Mike Pettit’s newest book is The Key West Bounce. Check out Mike on Amazon, Facebook, and his action/mystery blog.

3 Responses to “Introducing Mike Pettit, Author Extraordinaire”

  1. joylene Says:

    Excellent points, Mike. Thanks. I’ve been giving one of my books away as often as I can. The second one not so much because I have to pay for it. As for the grading level, I’m general around 8th grade. I appreciate other writers not talking over my head, so I try to do the same. This was a very helpful post, btw.

    • Mike Pettit Says:

      Joylene, Many writers don’t reailize or know about the comprehension level target to write to and become frustrated when they recieve poor reviews. A bad review can be devistating to a writer that has bared their soul to the world. But here’s the deal. If you know your readership and you write to them then they will give you five star reviews. When I say I am a C+ writer, I am actually a five star A+ writer to my base. but because most readers don’t know about comprehensin readers with a higher level of comprehension feel cheated and think ithe author has cheated them and they say mean things…just ignore these people, and never argue with them. You won’t win.
      Just keep doing what you are happy with and know who your fans are and youwill sell books.
      One last thing. I never give books away. If an author has one or two books and he/she is giving one of them away in the hopes of boosting sales on the other one is not a good business tactic.Sell both of your books. And I will tell you the top secret to success in todays writing world…write constantly and push out as many books as you can as fast as you can. The broader your product selection the higher the sales. As an example, I have eleven books on Amazon, my average sales are two hundred books a day across all eleven titles. Some days higher, some day lowers. My goal is to get up to twenty books on amazon and 5oo books per day. I am not bragging, and I don’t know what other writers are selling so I can not comment on their sales success, but for me I am please with my sales and proud of my books.
      Now get out there and write.

  2. Jk white Says:

    Pettit’s books would be far more interesting if someone got an editor after them before publishing. Ideas suffer from poor grammar and punctuation.


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