Author Spotlight: Gary Anderson

See full issue for 2016 08-08

If you had a writing motto what would it be?
"Nail your ass to the seat." For me, the most important--and challenging--part of writing is to write regularly. So I force myself to sit in front of the computer every day and write--even if it's only 100 words. That can add up if you do it every day. And on a good day, that 100 words can turn into a 1000.

Where do you draw your inspiration?
In a word, everywhere--real life, television, social media, news stories. Having said that, I often find myself inspired to write by other writers, particularly those whom I admire. When I read something that makes me laugh so hard I spew milk/water/Kool-Aid/beer from my nose, that makes me want to write something good, too.

What is one interesting fact about you?
I once saw Neil Young buying a Slurpee at 7-11 store in Winnipeg, Canada. At least, at the time, I swore it was him. I found out later that since Young hails from Winnipeg, there are a slew of imitators hanging thereabouts. So now, I'm not so sure whether it was actually Mr. Young that I saw buying a extra-large root beer slurpee or simply an overzealous disciple of his.

Have you learned anything from the self publishing process and would you do anything differently next time?
In a word (or two): have a timeline drawn up, so you know when to do what. For example, I would definitely start sending out review requests earlier next time. Having some well-timed and well-placed reviews handy at launch time can make a big difference. Unfortunately, indie publishers/authors are usually so busy with "other" things that this detail often gets overlooked.

What has been your most successful marketing strategy?
Actually, there's nothing like have books in hand, on hand, at all times (well most of the time). I've been surprised how easy (relatively speaking) it is to sell a paperback copy of a book if it's sitting right there on my desk at work; or if I have it with me when I go into your local bookstore. In other words, always keep some of your books on hand.

What is the best kept secret you have found in regard to indie publishing?
The actual process of making a book is the same for an indie press as it is for one of the Big Five. There's no reason that my/your book can't have the same high standard of quality as those of Random House or S&S . Quality is something that you make, not something that simply comes with a name.

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