BELLEVUE, Neb. (KMTV) — Cancer and treatments for it took his voice, but did not take author C.J. Petit's words.
The Bellevue, Nebraska man served in the Air Force for years. When he retired and started reading more, he complained to his daughter about the lack of quality western romance books on the market.
Meredith Mohanty encouraged her father to do something about it.
That's the short version of the story about how he became an Amazon bestseller. Today, Petit holds the number one, number two, and number three rankings for his genre in the Kindle store.
"I needed to keep my mind moving, but what it turned out to be was a whole new focus," Petit said in an interview with KMTV in 2017.
His wife, Lauren Petit, took us back further.
"(C.J.) had this idea and he wrote a kind of science fiction story, and then he kind of let it go," she said. "A year or two later, he wrote another story about a mystery at a missile silo, and he kind of let it go. And that was it. Nothing after that."
Until January 17, 2017, when C.J. Petit published his first book, Rock Creek.
Mohanty remembers how the family didn't take it too seriously.
"He sent me a text and he's like, 'Did you know I've sold books?' And it was actually a profit. And we were like, 'Whaaaat?'," she said with a smile. "We had to eat it a little bit on that one, like, I guess we shouldn't be making fun of him."
Petit has published 83 books with about three million sold in all formats. His 84th book will be released in a matter of days.
To shop his work on Amazon, visit Amazon.com: C.J. Petit: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle .
To connect with fans of C.J. Petit's work, visit C.J. Petit Fans! | Facebook.