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A day after his story about receiving the nicest cease-and-desist letter we've ever seen went viral, Patrick Wensink's book, Broken Piano For President is climbing Amazon's book charts.
The book -- which is a about a man who is far more productive when he is drunk than when sober -- is currently #40 on Amazon's best-sellers list. It's the top selling book in satire and the fifth best-selling book in humor.
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For Wensink, the success is utterly unexpected. The source of his success -- that now famous letter from the Jack Daniel's -- was also a surprise.
"I was on vacation when the letter arrived," Wensink told Mashable. "I was drinking whiskey actually, though not JD because I'm a writer and can't afford top-shelf stuff, when the letter arrived."
Initially afraid of the letter, the more he read, Wensink says, the better he started to feel about the whole thing.
"By the end of the letter, I was actually feeling pretty OK about everything," he tells us. "Who knew Jack Daniel's was so full of sweethearts."
A Book Cover Goes Viral
The source of the letter was the book cover that Wensink's publisher, an indie house called Lazy Fascist Press -- chose for the title.
"I didn't have any say in it," Wensink explains. "My publisher sent me a PDF, I thought 'hey that looks great' and approved it, that was it."
"I didn't even think about anything like trademark or copyright with a cover," Wensink says, noting that isn't something he's trained in. Still, he acknowledged, the cover absolutely looked like the famous gentlemanly logo of Jack Daniel's.
Although Jack Daniel's offered to help pay for a new book cover -- something Wensink notes is "unheard of" in the publishing industry -- Lazy Fascist has declined the kind offer. A new cover for the print and eBook should be available sometime next month.
Big Payoff After Six Years of Work
Prior to its publication, Wensink had worked on Broken Piano For President for six years.
Wensink acts as his own marketing person -- he acknowledges that his publisher doesn't have money for marketing -- making appearances at book festivals and promoting book reviews on podcasts and the web.
After the book cover situation was settled, Wensink knew he had to share his story with his friends. He wrote a blog post, sharing a few details of the situations on July 15. After checking with his lawyer, he released the full extent of the letter -- and the happy results -- a few days later.
The extent of the interest in the story caught Wensink by surprise. The story first caught my eye after seeing a blurb on BoingBoing Sunday morning. Since appearing on Mashable, outlets such as The Atlantic, Esquire and Bloomberg. "On a good day, I might get 20 hits on my book's website, today I did 120,000" Wensink shared.
Although Wensink knows that some of the people buying his book are only doing so for the cover -- and don't worry collector's, the book is print-on-demand so people who order before the art is changed will probably get the current edition -- he hopes people take a chance to read what's inside.
Meanwhile, the people at Jack Daniel's Properties can stand tall, knowing that acting the part of a gentleman, earned scores of new fans.
This story has resonated with thousands of our readers. Let us know why in the comments.
This story originally published on Mashable here.
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