With a Little Help From My Friends

Share photos on twitter with TwitpicI promise this will be the last book blog for awhile. For one thing, I’ll get to finally play a little poker this week now that the book is out. So you have my bad beats to look forward to…

Our agent Sheree Bykofsky humped Check-Raising the Devil to major publishers. Here was a typical response: “Unfortunately I have to pass on this. While I personally think this is an exciting read everyone else here thinks that “poker books are dead.” Our sales team says it was hot last year but this year the buzz has died down. I tried explaining the other fascinating aspects to Mike’s story but the unequivocal response in the room was negative.”

John F. Kennedy once said, “Victory has a thousand fathers and defeat is an orphan.” When something bombs, no one wants to own it. Everyone, however, wants credit for a success. And to some extent, that’s as it should be; success is built with many hands.

Mike Matusow gets the motherload – and then some – of the credit. His life makes for a great story, he actually survived it, and he actually remembered it:) I know people will doubt this, but Mike was articulate as hell during this process – well unless he was multi-tabling or watching NFL. Tim and I figured out how to write it. But that makes only six hands of the many that helped give Mike’s book a chance.

There is a reason why so many hookers want to spend time with Pauly. In him, they subliminally sense the pimp of all pimps. And Pauly has pimped the book not once, but twice. Al Can’t Hang burned the midnight oil reviewing the book – and pimped the book with both barrels, while in the midst of FTOPS XII. Haley hooked us up with Short-Stacked Shamus for this stunning PokerNews.com review (Man I love that last paragraph. I wish I wrote that.) And ~run.it.twice was the first one over at 2+2 to post a review – and did likewise on his blog.

I confess I called my local Barnes and Noble this weekend out to find out if the book was on their stands. It was (although it doesn’t hit the New Releases display until the 19th). I really wanted to see it on the shelves, but I didn’t want to be so needy as to go look. Thank god Otis Twittered the picture above from the Barnes and Noble in Greenville, SC. Thanks buddy, I needed that.

And then there was Michael Craig. He involved me in the early discussions on the book – and then didn’t do the book:) Thanks for that Michael.

So what’s the bottom line? Check-Raising the Devil hit 68th on Amazon’s Best Seller list for Biographies and Memoirs today (Michael J. Fox was 63rd and I think we can take him). And it’s already cracked the top 1000 books overall (it peaked at 647 so far).

Thanks guys.


  1. Posted May 12, 2009 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

    Big congratulations on the book! Can’t wait to get my hands on it… I’m inspired by you and haven’t yet read a word. :)

  2. Posted May 12, 2009 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    Absolutely awesome. I will be cruising my local Borders just waiting for the opportunity to point it out to someone and say, “Yeah – I know the author(s).”

    Totally cool.


  3. Jonathan
    Posted May 13, 2009 at 9:13 am | Permalink


    Picked up the book yesterday, and nearly halfway through it. I absolutely LOVE IT! What a great story…can’t wait to see Mike at WSOP this year and pass along my congrats…well done Amy.

  4. Posted May 13, 2009 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    i received my copy from Amazon yesterday and got thru the first 6 chapters last night. enjoying it, congrats!

  5. Posted May 14, 2009 at 10:04 pm | Permalink

    Bought the book hoping I could make it last through the first two weeks of my new kids life. Had a hard time putting it down and finished it before leaving the hospital.

    Well done, well done. Can’t wait for a chance to talk to you about it in person.

  6. Posted May 14, 2009 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

    Will the book be out in audio or Kindle?

  7. Eugene
    Posted May 15, 2009 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    I actually find it amusing that “how to succeed with women” is in the “Puzzles” section next to Mr. Matusow’s book. -sorry spelling on a phone is too hard.

  8. Randy Harrill
    Posted June 28, 2009 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

    Amy- Just started reading the book. In Phil’s forward is there a typo or am I missing something? When Phil said “He beat nearly 6,800 players to reach the final three tables of the 2009 WSOP main event.”