Can I Do This…Is it Okay?

Posted by on August 19, 1998

An Extremely Unusual Monday Morning Memo from The Wizard of Ads

Years ago, when I first began writing the Monday Morning Memo, I vowed that I would never write about me. The world is full of interesting people and most of them are far more interesting than I am.

That’s why I’m in a dilemma today. I need your help, but to ask you for it, I’ve got to talk about me for a minute. Can I do this? (By faith, I’m trusting you’ll let me do it just this once.)

Since I was thirteen years old, one of my dreams has been to walk into a bookstore and see my book on the shelf. “That’s me. Right there among the big boys.” This is the week it happened. My book was placed on the shelves of every major bookstore in America. I went to the bookstore and stared at it until I heard a little girl say, “Momma, is that man crying?” That was thirty minutes ago.

As fortune would have it, America’s foremost publisher of business books happens to be an avid reader of the Monday Morning Memo. Ray Bard of Bard Press publishes only 6 books each year. They’re always business books and at least 3 of them usually make the bestseller list. Last year, Bard won the publisher’s Business Book of The Year Award for NUTS!, the wacky story of Herb Kelleher and Southwest Airlines. His other bestsellers in 1997 were Inside The Magic Kingdom and Guts and Borrowed Money. This year, Bard is betting heavily on my book, The Wizard of Ads.

I need your help today because the book business is governed by strange and unusual rules. Any new book which sells at least 80% of the bookstore’s opening order is kept on the shelves indefinitely. Any book which falls short of 80% sell-through during its first 60 days is removed from the shelves forever. Unfortunately, July and August are the worst months of the year for the sale of business books. That’s why I need your help.

If the bookstores of America sell 4,500 copies of The Wizard of Ads in July, Ray Bard tells me we’ll make the bestseller list and as a consequence, gain the momentum to carry us over the mountain and into the Promised Land. That’s only 3 books per state/per day for each day in July, and there are nearly 2,000 subscribers to the Monday Morning Memo. I’ve only got to sell 7,000 copies in 60 days to stay on the shelves, but this is the slowest time of year. Can I count on you to buy a copy?

The Wizard of Ads contains 100 of the best Monday Morning Memos of the past three years, fabulously illustrated and magically arranged by the wonderful people at Bard Press. The retail price is only $16.95. The ISBN number is 1-885167-29-6

Aside from being available in most bookstores, you can buy Wizard of Ads on-line at If you are such an angel as to be willing to buy a large number of copies for your staff, clients, or friends, you can order them at a pretty substantial discount from Schwartz Business Books at 1-800-CEO-READ. You can also order in bulk from Waldenwise at (313) 913-1907.

Thank you for doing this. You have no idea how much it means to me.

Roy H. Williams

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