Interview

Episode 163 – Getting A Creative Edge with Mickey Mikkelson

In this episode Mark interviews Mickey Mikellson of Creative Edge Publicity – a boutique publicity firm specializing in arranging events such as book signings, library or school presentations, online and print media opportunities, and many other events related to the arts in general. Mickey and his firm are advocates for both the traditional and independent artist.

Prior to the interview, Mark shares some recent comments from listeners, a personal update, and a word from this episode’s sponsor.

You can learn more about how you can get your work distributed to retailers and library systems around the world at starkreflections.ca/Findaway.

In their conversation, Mark and Mickey talk about:

  • The last time Mark interviewed Mickey, for the Kobo Writing Life podcast in Calgary at When Words Collide
  • What Creative Edge Publicity does and how they work with authors in terms of setting up interviews, chats, appearances, articles, etc, since 2016
  • How it had been Robert J. Sawyer, Mickey’s first traditionally published author, who introduced Mark to Mickey
  • How Creative Edge Publicity went full-time in September 2020 and doubled their client base in less than a month
  • How Mickey got into the business
  • The typical services and connections that Creative Edge offers to their clients
  • The reality of not being able to guarantee sales, but working on long term building-blocks of opportunities
  • Some of the differences now that this business is operating full time
  • The rewarding experience of getting to work with highly intelligent and creative individuals on a daily basis
  • The difference between a publisher’s in-house publicist and an independent publicist
  • Mickey’s preference towards creating and continuing to build a relationship with an author who is a client, versus short-term, one-off projects
  • The ability to continue to publicize back-list titles versus the three month window of publicity that comes with traditional publishing
  • The first conversation with potential clients in terms of determining the fit, which is typically one hour
  • How Mickey signs authors not based on the content of their books, but more on their personality and how they might fit well within the larger team of clients
  • The perspective of the entire client basis of Creative Edge being a team or extended family
  • The typical budget range an author working with Creative Edge would be looking at
  • The results-based charges currently used for billing clients
  • The value of attracting a reader-based audience versus a mass media based audience
  • Some of the misconceptions authors have about publicists

Links of Interest:

Mickey Mikkelson is the founder and brain child behind Creative Edge Publicity. 

Graduating from the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology with a Marketing Diploma, Mickey has been in the book industry since 2006 where he started as the Special Events Manager in St Albert, Alberta for Chapters/Indigo, the largest bookstore chain in Canada.

Ten years later, he formed Creative Edge Publicity, an aggressive boutique publicity firm that specializes in advocating for both the traditional and independent artist. Realizing there was a direct need by authors for publicity, Mickey tailored his firm to obtain media for indie authors initially and then spreading out to promoting works by traditionally published writers as well. 

In the four years that Creative Edge has been in existence, Mickey has managed to sign some of the top talents in the literary industry including multiple award winners, signing New York Times Bestsellers, and has been able to get indie authors various levels of success with many of them becoming international bestselling authors while working with the Creative Edge brand.


The introductory, end, and bumper music for this podcast (“Laser Groove”) was composed and produced by Kevin MacLeod of www.incompetech.com and is Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

Below is an automated transcription of the interview segment of this episode.

(The transcription has not been human-verified)

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Mickey. Great to see you again.

Mickey Mikkelson: Nice to see you again as well, Mark. Thanks again for bringing me on your podcast.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: It’s been so long since we’ve chatted. I think the last time, uh, the last time I was able to actually interview you for something was probably for the Kobo writing life podcast.

Mickey Mikkelson: We did a live chat.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: You gave some tips and marketing advice for authors, and that might’ve been what, three years ago? Four years ago. Yeah. Uh, when words collide, right? 2016, 2017, something like that.

Mickey Mikkelson: Yeah. 2017, I think. Yeah, maybe 18. It was a few, it was a while back. Yeah.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: And we’ve been in conversation and, uh, and you’ve actually, uh, you’ve actually put me in contact with some great authors, uh, that I’ve had on the podcast. But I’ve been wanting to have you on the podcast and realize, uh, all these years later, I still haven’t. So I’m so excited that we get a chance to chat.

Mickey Mikkelson: Well, thanks for doing this. I’ve been on pins and needles myself going over this, so it’s good. Awesome.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: So, uh, for, uh, for my listeners, just, uh, let them know.

So what is creative edge publicity and, uh, and your background getting into this. Yeah,

Mickey Mikkelson: We’re focused for writers. Initially we started with indie writers, homely, um, and then we got into some provisional writers, but we’re all about building our clients brands. And it’s all about books, obviously, authors and such.

So we’re, we’re setting up interviews, podcasts on international scale radio TV as well. Book reviews. Um, all genres, we’re not John or specific, although 50% of our clients are probably in the scifi fantasy game. Oh really? But yeah, but end of the day, we, as to non-fiction authors, um, we have some New York times best sellers.

We have multiple award winners, international debt sellers as well. And we’ve been doing this since 2016. It’s uh, Been very, very successful overall, so

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: excellent. And I’m trying to remember, there was a really awesome smart person who said, Oh, Mark, you’ve got to meet Mickey. And I can’t remember it might’ve been an author who had been working with you.

Uh, of course I, I, I draw blanks, but it was just like, Oh, you guys have to connect. Uh, and I remember that was a pretty exciting time. It was at, at, in Calgary. Uh, when words collide

Mickey Mikkelson: was that Robert shades Sawyer, he was probably Rob,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: you know, Rob the linchpin. Who’s always connecting people. Right.

Mickey Mikkelson: Well, I’ve represented him since 2017.

He’s been like a huge advocate. So it wouldn’t surprise. And he did that. Oh, that’s, Rob’s

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: one of your clients

Mickey Mikkelson: as well. Oh, cool. Yes. Yes.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Bestselling order of Canada chase. So here.

Mickey Mikkelson: Yeah. He’s he was my first traditional client actually, and it just blew up from there, so, Oh, wow.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Oh, so, so a lot of the stuff that Rob has been doing, you’ve been working on with him, like for his last couple of book launches and things like that.

I imagine.

Mickey Mikkelson: Yeah, quantum nights, the first book we started off, this has been from there as well.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Well, that’s really good. Cool. So, um, you mentioned, uh, creative edge publishing started in 2016, but as I understand it, it was just recently 2020, um, that, uh, things changed, uh, the, in terms of the growth of, of creative edge.

We

Mickey Mikkelson: went full time in September, end of September, we made the decision to go full time and be more aggressive in the marketplace. Um, I was in the corporate world for eight years and situations come up and this opportunity came up and I took the plunge and we went from 40 authors to over 16, less than a month.

Wow.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: And so in the middle of a pandemic, I’m going to give the cause you’ve been doing it for a number of years, obviously had 40 clients, some huge successes there. And then it was like, let’s, let’s let’s step off the ledge and see what happens

Mickey Mikkelson: that must’ve been.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Yeah.

Mickey Mikkelson: Yeah, it was, it was nerve wracking, but I talked to my wife and my sat down with my family and we had a decision about it and it just came about, and we’re now full-time and we’re growing.

It’s great.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Fantastic. That is awesome. So how did you get into you, uh, this business now, you, you mentioned the creative edge. You work exclusively with authors, so you’re not working with musicians or other creatives. You’re working specifically with writers, authors. Um, how did you get into this business?

Mickey Mikkelson: Yeah. So just to clarify, I have one musician that I work with. Oh, he’s an author, but he’s an author. Oh, okay. His name is Jackie. Jackie M joiner. He’s a number one billboard saxophonist. And he wrote an OSI five block. And so he signed me based on the fact that we’re promoting is his writing more so to his music.

But just to clarify, um, I started 2016, was working in the corporate world. A girl I work with her name is Miranda. Oh, Surely it’s the little chiclet book called, um, shit up tits out. And we got together and we talked about stuff when we were on the road in Alberta, working together and meeting our corporate clients.

And I said, cause I used to work at chapters. I said, let me help you promote you. And so we did, we did a, a Western Alberta tour together. I got a little bit of media coverage and then the word got out specifically in Calgary because that’s where I was going at the time. But we’d gone out. People ask me if I could do some same things for them that I was doing for her.

And for a little business and that’s how it all started. And now we have 60, 60 authors to date today. International media connections, huge conglomerates with a lot of book festivals and, uh, yeah, it’s good.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Wow. So I want to, I want to go back to this. I’m very curious to talk about your connections in the media and all that.

Cause that’s a really exciting thing for authors. So you were working at chapters now just to clarify for listeners who are outside of Canada and may not be familiar with this large book chain. Um, so it is a, is a ma major book chain. What is your role at chapters related to marketing? And was that something that you took on like passion?

Mickey Mikkelson: It was the Alberta Centennial, and my manager at the time asked me to set up some book signings for my store and st. Albert.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Okay.

Mickey Mikkelson: And we got 21, I got 21 authors the week of the Alberta Centennial to come to our store and do book signings. And so that’s, that’s how it all started. And actually that’s where I met Robert jury, sir, the first time, because I reached out to him and he came to my store for a book signing.

So I had a little bit of experience working with authors from that aspect. I didn’t imagine that that experience would eventually get into this. But, but it has, so, yeah. Oh,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Wow. In terms of, in terms of the services that you do for authors, so you talked about the media connections and interviews and stuff like that.

What’s a typical, what’s a typical thing that an author will come to you and say, uh, Hey Mickey, I need creative edge to do this, this and this. Like, what are some of the things they end up doing for the authors?

Mickey Mikkelson: Uh, initial interviews when I’m signing a client, I’ve had half my clients, so you’re going to get me on Allen.

And of course that never happens because she doesn’t do interviews first and foremost, but I mean, in all seriousness, um, We’re we’re building out a platform and we’re building their brands and I never guaranteed sales and never guaranteed media coverage because you just can’t guarantee those things.

But I’m all, I’m a big believer in building blocks and I’m a big believer that small opportunities as you’re building your media resume will lead to mid-range opportunities. And then ultimately large range opportunities. And I’ve seen this multiple, multiple times. So when I’m talking with authors, I’m asking them what their passion is.

I’m asking them what they want to do at their book. And I want to do these determine whether or not those opportunities are going to be real and feasible. So if that makes any sense.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Oh yeah. I love that. And I love the fact that you look at it like building blocks because. And everything’s cumulative, right?

Some of the little things that you do today, uh, get discovered by someone else down the road. And, uh, lo and behold, after spending time and effort like yourself, after spending four years building this business, you finally got to a place where you could feel comfortable, uh, going full time, uh, and then thus expanding the business into something larger.

Mickey Mikkelson: Absolutely. That’s true. Yeah. I’m

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: curious to know, how are you, how are you finding this now? Like any, any differences specifically from going from part-time to full-time

Mickey Mikkelson: were funny. I have more time to leverage the connections that I’ve got both from a media aspect and a book connection aspect. And so I’m not as stressed out.

I’m not up wants still up at four in the morning, which is what I’ve been doing for years. But yeah. I’m not as stressed, trying to, trying to balance what’s happening in the corporate world and trying to balance this during the day, I’ll take author phone calls. I can take off their texts. I can, I can do those things and have the freedom to do that.

So it’s been very good because I’m have more time to be more effective and pinpoint certain opportunities for certain people. And, and it’s been a lot better from that aspect, for sure.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Curious about, um, the, the passion that drives you, uh, in this business in terms of, uh, eh, how, how that might have changed or grown over the year.

Mickey Mikkelson: It’s just been so rewarding. And I said this a few times in other areas, but it’s so rewarding to work with. I say it like this. I get to work with some of the most highly intellectual. People and creatives out there on a daily, daily basis. And when I get media coverage or I get a book review for them, it’s a five star.

It is so rewarding to know that I’m the one doing that for these people. And that, that to me, you just can’t put a dollar value on that. You can’t put anything else on that. It’s okay. I can’t even explain the feeling I get when I’m, when I’m doing something like that. I mean, I work with like huge people, like New York times bestseller, Tosca Lee.

And when I get her on something and she calls me up and says, thank you, Mickey, for doing this, it just. You can’t put a price on that. Awesome.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: That’s so fantastic. So, uh, what are some of the things, um, that, um, an author should consider, who is looking at hiring a company like creative edge to kind of reach out to media contacts for them, as opposed to trying to go, uh, on their own.

Mickey Mikkelson: I think that authors have done or have an understanding of what publicists do. We know what the traditional publicist, the in-house publicist that typically they’re going to work or new release for three months, and then they’re going to stop. Um, I’ve developed a process where I’m promoting the back list.

Just as hard as I’m promoting the new releases and we’re doing that on a year end basis. So the, the traction should never, never, ever fall. And I think that authors need to understand that it’s a, it’s a commitment. It’s not only a time commitment to do these things and get this media coverage and do all that.

But it’s also an understanding to be professional when they’re out there to understand. Why we’re doing what we’re doing and the marketability and, and really, they should understand what they want to do before they even look at hiring a publicist because at the other end got a direction of what they want to do.

I can’t help them if they throw me a book in a week and I say, my books out in a week, what am I going to do with that? That’s a week before the launch. I can’t do anything with that. So. That’s just one area for sure. Okay.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: From an author’s perspective, do you, uh, do authors hire you for specific projects or is it like you take on a client for X amount of time?

How does, how does that relationship typically work?

Mickey Mikkelson: I’ve had a lot of authors ask me about one-off project. And I’ll be honest, Mark. I tend to shy away from those because publicity and marketability, it takes time to build that up. And if I’m working on a two month or three month project, all the efforts that we’ve done and building that up for three months after three months, it’s, it’s typically gone.

It’s. You’re, you’re not going to build anything off of that. So I signed my clients on a year basis. Oh, that’s how the contracts were written up with auto-renewal at the end of that, the end of that year, but I’m not really looking for, and I use the word commodity all the time. I’m not. In the, in the market for, for working with people who are, are commodity based.

I want long-term relationships because that’s what I’ve built with my team, as well as my, the media. And so that’s, that’s the bottom line. I mean, If it was a mainstream author and they wanted me for a piecework project, I might look at that, but I typically don’t. I prefer relationships. That’s where we have the marketability for.

So,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: well, I like that. Yeah, because when you’re looking at that and it’s, it’s very much, I would say the way that an agent or an editor looks at an author is they’re not just buying a book from them. They’re they’re there. Creating a relationship with the author because they want to be in this for the long run.

It’s like, I’m not just worried about this next book. You’re going to write, I’m worried about the next five books you’re going to write and how we’re going to build you up and build up your brand. So,

Mickey Mikkelson: uh, that’s,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: that’s great. I love that, but,

Mickey Mikkelson: but how does, uh, so an author,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: obviously it’s most likely starts with one because somebody contacts you and says, I have a book coming out in.

Six weeks, three months, six months, two days, uh, whatever.

Mickey Mikkelson: Uh, it usually starts with that, but then it’s

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: like, okay, here’s what I can probably do for your book launch, but then here’s the longterm plan. And that’s where you look at probably their author brand in more detail. Building up, um, like what their, um, their, uh, the look and feel so that when, when you contact media and the media goes to their website, I imagine that they actually have something that’s going to

Mickey Mikkelson: catch their eye.

Yeah. I mean, and I mean, when we’re promoting authors, we, we do send out press releases as well. And we on a book launch itself. I individualize every press release. So I’m not just E blasting our release out to 600 or 400 or 300 contacts. I’m drafting up 400, typically 400 individual emails catering to those specific media pieces and individualizing it for, for, for more success.

That’s the first element of what I’m doing. Secondly, we’ve also been able to strategize and. Set up, um, set arrangements with some media places. So for 20, 20, 21, we’ve already got at least I think 30 schedules full schedules made for next year with, with, with eye areas. Um, there’s a UK radio station, the interview, one of our clients every single week.

Um, yeah. So that’s what the kind of things that we’re doing. Right. And it’s all about collaboration and connectivity. So,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: yeah. Fantastic. I, I kind of liked that long-term relationship because it actually allows you to build upon those things over time. Um,  uh, and again, it’s so much, uh, I mean, one of the things from traditional publishing, I have had publicists assigned to me from a traditional publisher

Mickey Mikkelson: and they’re great to work with.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: But they only really care about my book. Oh, a month

Mickey Mikkelson: before

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: or so. I mean, I know they’re doing work ahead of time, but usually a month before release and the month of release, and then I disappear off of their

Mickey Mikkelson: radar because they have

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: all these other titles that they have to focus on, et

Mickey Mikkelson: cetera. Exactly.

Which is why true much like yourself, which is why traditional authors will reach out to me. I mean, that’s how I signed Tosca Lee because they were only doing work for her book for three months and then they stopped. Whereas I’ve been doing, I promoting her latest geology for over a year and a half, and we’re still getting opportunities today.

So that’s, that’s the, I guess the VIP’s man, right?

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Oh, that’s a, that’s fantastic. How, how. How does the relationship work? I’m just kind of, I’m kind of curious. So, uh, author goes to your website, sees that you have something, is there like a Q and a, is there an initial meeting you have before you decide it?

I guess it’s a two way thing, right? Like they decide they want to work with you and then you decide, can I actually do stuff for you? Or, I mean, there must be cases where you’re like, I don’t know if I can actually help

Mickey Mikkelson: you. Does that come up? It does. So every client that I sign her, every author who reaches out to me and usually through word of mouth or a client referral or, or some, or sometimes a media referral.

But I typically will have a conversation with that author for a boat, an hour to find out what they want to do, how they want to do it, whether or not I’m going to be a fit for them. And then of course the pricing piece comes up as well. So we talk about that as well, but it’s typically an hour long conversation to make sure that there’s a connection because I don’t, and I’ve said this before, but I don’t sign authors based on the strength of what they’re writing or their books.

I sign authors on their personality and how well, I think I can work with that individual. And more importantly, Are they going to be a fit for my team? Because what one author does in an interview basically affects 15, nine other people. So if that makes any sense. Oh yeah, that’s

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: true. Because if you set someone up and it’s a really bad experience, then the producer of that radio show, it’s probably like, ah, no, no, no.

Mickey sent me this other person and I don’t know if everyone else is like them.

Mickey Mikkelson: Yeah. A hundred percent. And I mean, we’ve, we’ve developed a huge community. I mean, our team is our team and if you don’t fit within that team, you’re not going to have success with us. Is the relationships going to end badly?

And then I’m going to be looked down upon because it didn’t go well, and I don’t want that to ever happen. So, um, yeah, we have a long, we have an hour long conversation. Usually once that author signed as well, hallmark, I’m usually having a conversation with every member. Usually within a week to every two weeks to make sure that we’re on track with everything we were doing.

So the communication never, never stops.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Yeah, I can imagine. And I imagine that’s so much easier, uh, now that it’s, full-time rather than trying to relegate that to work evenings and weekends and things like that.

Mickey Mikkelson: Yeah. I mean, it’s still, there’s a little, still a little bit of that, but not as much as there used to.

I can, I can now watch football on Sundays and I’ll feel guilty about it.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: So what, what is, um, budget wise for an author who’s considering, um, you know, working with someone like creative edge, what’s a, uh, range that an author should be

Mickey Mikkelson: considering. I can’t speak to what other PR firms are charging. Um, I I’ve heard some horror stories just based on clients that I’ve signed and those, those dollars are in the thousands on a monthly basis.

Um, typically I won’t obviously broadcast my full fees, but because of privacy and respect that, right. Working with creative edge, you’re probably looking in the ballpark between 300 and $500 a month. Max. Um, the one thing I will say is we’ve structured our, our projects and our contracts to say that if I never book an author, anything they’re not paying me anything.

I don’t take a monthly retainer up front. Um, all the opportunities are based on what I’ve booked for them. So all the emails I’m sending out, the press release, draft, all of that. I don’t get paid for any of that. I get paid on what those authors are booked, but on average, an author, yeah. On average and authors typically paying between one 50 and $300 a month.

Okay today, now that could change down the road, but

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: yeah, of course. And that’s going to change over time as, um, as a, as other circumstances change that makes it, but that just kind of gives an author an idea of what it’s. And so I’m really curious about that. So you’re doing a lot of the groundwork.

You’re doing a lot of that legwork. So if you’ve sent out, for example, if I can follow this path, you’ve sent out a bunch of press releases. You’ve signed an author because you believe that, you know, working together can be a great experience. And you’ve got a specific media that you’re going to be pitching because you think that would be a good for them too.

Um, and you, and you pitch a bunch of these things and you get a bunch, uh, maybe you get some nibbles or whatever, but nothing gets booked. Does that mean that all that work you’ve did you don’t get paid for? Uh, and the author only pays if, if they’ve landed like a radio interview or, or maybe a newspaper article or something like that.

Mickey Mikkelson: That’s correct. If they don’t get it, they don’t get booked for the opportunity. They’re not paying for the opportunity. So it’s, the results are not

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: necessarily sales cause you can never guarantee sales, but the re the results are actually getting, uh, getting in to get the interview, getting in, to be, uh, to be in, in whatever that media

Mickey Mikkelson: is.

That’s right. So it’s really important from my side to build those media relationships, to ensure that we’re, we’re getting coverage. And we’ve done that, um, in a number of different areas,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: I’m the, I’m the head

Mickey Mikkelson: interview. I set up all the inner wall, all the creative edge interviews for top shelf magazine, and we’ve got a set arrangement with them.

We set up all their book reviews as well, but we’ve done this multiple, multiple times with different vehicles and it’s been successful. So. When an author says, can you guarantee me interviews? I probably can. At this point now it’s not going to be Fox news or a CVS, but it’s going to be reader base bloggers.

Right. That are going to attract readers who are going to buy those books. So yeah, it’s successful in that aspect.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: That’s fantastic. So, so the media you’re dealing with is, uh, is print, right? So magazines, newspapers, online, um, radio podcasts, uh, I guess video as well, like video, um,

Mickey Mikkelson: Yep. Yup. And I mean, I’ve worked with some authors.

Who’ve told me, you know, I’m, I’m, I’m established, so you’re going to get me on Forbes and Huffington post and all these big places I’ve signed those clients. I could probably get them on those places, but the opportunities they’ve gotten with me have not been those places. They’ve been more reader focused.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Right. Right.

Mickey Mikkelson: And, and they’ve actually sold more books as a result of that, because now it’s not just the general public that they’re seeing exposure on, but it’s the reader public and the readers are the ones that buy books. Yeah,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: and

Mickey Mikkelson: that is true because

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: big media may reach a number of people, but a very, very small percentage of the population actually reads.

So, so that, that doesn’t make sense. So focus, instead of focusing on the big splash, you’re focusing on very specific targeted where, where you know that there’s going to be readers there. Wow. Exactly. I like

Mickey Mikkelson: that. And with that too, to that point, though, with that, you’re building your media resume. So as you get more and more of those onto the resume piece, places like CBS and CTV are seeing that I’m like, Oh, well this person’s done this so we should bring them on because obviously.

There’s interest. So that’s happened multiple times. Oh,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: that’s fantastic.

Mickey Mikkelson: So,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: yeah, again, yeah. I love that building blocks longterm. It’s not like a quick flash in the pan sort of thing. What are, what are some of the misconceptions that writers, uh, you, I’m sure you’ve encountered writers that have misconceptions about what, what a publicist does or what your, what your firm will do for them.

Mickey Mikkelson: There’s a misconception that all publicists do is take money up front and not work with authors to get opportunities. Okay. Um, it’s frustrating because I can’t over 10 times I’ve had author interviews and they’re very, very guarded, especially when it comes to the price piece, because they’ve worked with a publicist who they spend a lot of money on.

And that publicist didn’t get them anything. And so I’m up against that as well. Um,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Oh, okay.

Mickey Mikkelson: Yeah, if that makes any sense. Um, so that’s, that’s the stigma around what we do is that we’re all about the money, but we’re not about to get, get you opportunities, which is why I priced the way I price, because then there’s no risk from that author piece.

Right. As well.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Right. So, yeah. So for example, if, if, uh, if you take on a client and that would be, let’s say an average of 300 to $500 a month, or something like that, that’s only in the months where there was actually some action. There was only some, some, some, some bites, uh, to, to go back to, you know, fishing routes.

So

Mickey Mikkelson: not just,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: not just putting the lines in the water, but the actual getting a bite.

Mickey Mikkelson: Okay. That’s right. So we are going to get minerals. Sometimes we’re going to get. Um, tuna. Sometimes, sometimes we want you to be a whale. It really depends on where works and the fishing analogy. Cause I like that.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Yeah. It depends on the specific bait that you put specific and unique to the media and the author in question

Mickey Mikkelson: exactly a hundred percent.

That’s good. Uh, what are some of the

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: strategies related to pitching, pitching a book or an author to the media? What are some of the things that you have to consider when you’re, when you’re doing that?

Mickey Mikkelson: I think that, that question really, it really depends on what, what the author brings to the table. First and foremost.

Um, someone like Tosca Lee, who’s a New York times bestseller and has won multiple awards this year for her latest duology. I mean, that pitch is going to be a lot different than in indie author who just wrote their first book and we’re, we’re trying to get them stuff. So. I, I think that’s where you gauge the smaller opportunities versus the medium opportunities.

And as you get more small opportunities, medium and large opportunities will come. So the pitch really depends on what the author is bringing to the table. And in fact, um, in one instance I had an author. Her name is Catherine Hudson. She wrote a book that she got a lot of five-star reviews line, but she wasn’t working with me at the time.

So we essentially relaunched her book a year later. Um, and we did that formally with a press release. All of that. The book became an international bestseller. Wait a second.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: And the book had already been out for a year. It wasn’t a new release, but it was the, it was the push to actually, well, a book you’ve not read as a new book.

Right,

Mickey Mikkelson: right, right. Yeah. So the book was out for a year. It had some reviews. Didn’t get a huge amount of traction, but it’s now an international bestseller cause we relaunched it. Um, she’s been featured in curve magazine. She’s been featured of file seven 17, which is the biggest site by site. There is fan wise.

Um, and we, and we did that. So that’s the kind of thing like being inventive and thinking outside the box. Right. Oh,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: that is, uh, that is awesome. So, uh, questions I know that listeners have is you’re currently taking or looking at considering nucleus right now.

Mickey Mikkelson: Always, always, never ends. It never ends.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: That’s fantastic.

So

Mickey Mikkelson: where, where can,

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: uh, authors who are interested in creative edge publicity? Where can they, where can they find

Mickey Mikkelson: you online? So my website is www, um, creative dash. I just thought services. And, um, my contact info is there. I’m on Facebook, I’m on Twitter at mm, creative. And, um, you know, I represent 60 people worldwide.

So. Facebook, all that good stuff.

Mark Leslie Lefebvre: Awesome. And I trust you will send me those links so I can include them in the show notes. It’s dark reflections.ca. Awesome. Well, Mickey, I’m really excited to go check this out. Thank you so much for, for sharing the details, uh, in the background for creative edge.

Mickey Mikkelson: Well, thanks.

Thanks again, Mark. For having me on it was so, so much of a blast.

2 thoughts on “Episode 163 – Getting A Creative Edge with Mickey Mikkelson”

  1. Hi Mark- Great interview. I’m hoping you keep us all posted on how you do with Creative Edge. Working with a publicist is something I’ve always been intrigued with. It’s a nice long term strategy for keeping readers aware of current and backlist books. I know I’m always pausing podcasts to search authors to add to my TBR pile. And given how crazy the advertising landscape is getting (surely I’m not the only one drowning under FB sponsored posts right now and I’ve stopped even looking at Amazon ads when browsing.) We’re soon wrapping up the year that was and what a year (!) and I’m focusing on 2021 as the start of the next chapter in my writing career. This might be a good way to start. All the best for 2021!

  2. I like the idea that Mickey doesn’t get paid until you have gotten value from his company.
    It is very similar to how we sell books. The reader gives us money and we provide entertainment in return directly.

    I also like that you are trying out their service. I feel your public brand is well known for your titles given that you have a busy month for appearances (October). Wanting to level up your game with professionals is smart.

    On a side note I would like to say thanks for all the great podcasts. I finally released my first book. Of course the prize that you get with good work is that you get more work. I look forward to my second book. I also look forward to more Stark Reflections.

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