“It is what it is because the mother of invention is necessity and sometimes an old dog is willing to try new tricks.,” said Gary Engler, with a big smile and a twinkle in his eyes. The author of the FAKE NEWS series was answering a question about why he decided to publish his first three mystery/thrillers at the same time.
“It wasn’t my original plan,” he said. “But after writing American Spin and sending it around to agents, I’d pretty much finished War on Drugs before it became clear to me that no agent was interested in representing — or even contacting —a retired Canadian journalist with no experience in this genre. And I had trouble explaining exactly what that was: ‘The Donald Trump, death-of-journalism era, political mystery/thriller genre’ — much too complicated for a simple pitch.”
With two books written and another bursting to get out, Engler says he began to look at the world of self-publishing, Amazon eBooks and print-on-demand (POD). With over a decade of experience in the world of small Canadian publishers he knew the chance of reaching a broad audience through those distribution channels was remote, but Amazon eBooks offers the opportunity to offer inexpensive novels to millions of people around the world. And POD can supply printed books to libraries and others.
“I really like the idea of offering my novels to the broadest possible audience at a price almost everyone can afford.”
Then when he looked into the most effective ways to market eBooks, the benefits of publishing more than one book in a series at the same time became clear.
“I can offer the first book in the series for 99 cents for pre-order and the first week of November. That means people can read it and decide, at a very minimal cost, if they like it. Those who find it a real page-turner and want more of the same, can immediately order and read two more in the series for under $10 in total.”
Engler says it is very important to him that the FAKE NEWS series is accessible in every way possible. “Describing the Donald Trump era for what it really is, making sense of the media that claims to inform you, understanding White nationalism, racism, sexism and contemporary fascism, thrilling storytelling that encourages you to think and to escape — all these are important. My goal is to get all this to as many people as possible, while being affordable and environmentally friendly. Publishing all three books at the same time on Amazon for Kindle checked all those boxes.”
Another smile from the grandfather of three further reveals his sense of humour.
“I cannot tell a lie,” he says. “The truth is I’m a writer and I wrote. By the time I got my shit together to deal with the business part of book publishing, there were three books ready — American Spin, War on Drugs, Misogyny— and I want to share them as quickly as possible with readers. That’s why all three will be available at the same time.”