On May 14th, 2022, the following press release was issued:
AUTHOR TO DONATE ROYALTIES OR GO FIGHT
Frederick, MD (May 14th, 2022) – American military veteran and author commits to serving in the Ukrainian International Legion if his book, The Natural Laws of Violence, generates at least $500,000 (U.S.) during the period 15 May 2022 to 15 June 2022. The commitment was made in a YouTube video released by Michael E. Nolan on the Mike November Media channel.
The full transcript of the video is:
“Hey folks, apologies for the rough video, but I wanted to get this out as quickly as possible. For the period between 15 May 2022 and 15 June 2022, I am going to save all the royalties I earned from the sale of my book, The Natural Laws of Violence, and if the royalties earned during that period of time are equal to or greater than $500,000, I am going to join the International Legion for the Territorial Defense of the Ukraine.
That may sound like a lot of money, but it isn’t. I cannot leave my family penniless and insurance life insurance doesn’t pay out, you know, in a war zone. The way this is going to work depends on which of the four possible outcomes occurs:
Possible outcome #1 – the $500,000 threshold is not met and if that happens I will donate whatever royalties I earned in that month to the GlobalGiving Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund.
Possible outcome #2 – the $500,000 threshold is met, I attempt to join the International Legion and they reject me for whatever reason. They’re like you’re too old and fat, get out of here, right. In that case, I will donate the royalties I earned from that period of time, minus the cost of the trip. And when we say that though, there are no shenanigans. Its not like I am going to have some jaunt in Spain. No, no, no. Straight there, straight back. The cost of that. And that’s it.
Possible outcome #3 – the $500,000 threshold is met, but for some strange reason I die between now and then. I don’t know. The Russians intercept me and Novichok my ass. I have no idea. Some shit does down, I die. In that case, my family still gets to keep the money. My widow at that point in time would get to keep the money.
The 4th possible outcome is that the $500,000 threshold is met and I successfully join the Legion. In that case then, of course, still as well, my family would be able to keep the funds at that point in time, and my wife would be able to meet her needs, the family’s needs, you know, in my absence.
So bottom line, either the money is donated to charity serving the Ukraine, or I serve in the Ukrainian military, or I die trying. Right? Those are the only three possible outcomes here.
Look, I’m a highly experienced combat veteran. I’m trying to do my part here. For less money than it takes to buy a cup of coffee – yes, the book is that cheap – the link is, uh, to Amazon is down below, you can do your part. Alright?
Sergeant Nolan, out.”
Well, unfortunately, the book did not generate anywhere near that amount in royalties during the period in question. In fact, just the opposite occurred, and sales plummeted. The following image shows the sales numbers in terms of royalties earned:
Normally I sell about one book per day on average but since this was my first foray into the world of press release marketing, I stopped all of my other marketing in order to be able to measure the results of this press release more accurately. Needless to say the results were disastrous from a marketing perspective.
Now if you were to ask me if my intentions were to raise money or to go fight, the answer would depend on whether or not my wife is in earshot of when I answer the question. One thing I can tell you, is that I did not intend for the Ukrainian effort to be ignored or unsupported. Accordingly, even though I only earned $7.98 in royalties during the period, I have donated $500 to the charity (see below) and I respectfully request that you, the reader, consider giving as well to the GlobalGiving Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund whatever your conscience tells you to give.