Heated question for y'all, from Canada of all places, frozen as it is.
So, you get a doorstopper galley of something called The Finger's Twist, from a local (Winnipeg, Manitoba) publisher (Turnstone) dumped on your desk, with a note from the books editor to maybe take a look. So, of course, you ignore it. You're a senior editor at the only major independent broadsheet west of Toronto, review mystery/crime/suspense as a labour of love, certainly not for the money -- there isn't any. You get a couple dozen books a week dumped on you. You get to review 4 in a monthly column -- but it's one of the few remaining full-zoom Books sections in the country.
So why lug this bloody thing home? You read a couple pages while you're waiting for some slug freelancer to file. You got 4 sections a week to put out and three websites to run -- not much time to play. What's this? Some bozo and a dame in a wheelchair? Who the F cares? Toss it aside. Sits for another week. Then, what the hell - nothing to read. Column's done, another batch of heavyweights knocking off dicta-novels, even some favourite guys like Crais and Kellerman and Connelly. So, lug the F-ing thing out to the car, dump it in the back seat, where it sits for another week.
Now, absolutely nothing to read but this year's 9th James Patterson autopilot thing with no-name collaborators -- a fate worse than death. Pick Twist up. Next stop -- 6 am.
So, wangle a stand-alone review. First time. Name it Canadian mystery of the year. But the eastern critics don't bite. Starts selling out locally, but so what? That and a loonie'll buy you a cuppa coffee. And it starts selling out in Toronto and Calgary 'cause there are only 1,100 copies, and maybe the publisher hasn't a clue what to do if all of them sell out.
Then you get blabbing online with this Lamothe guy, who turns out to be "one of us", an ex-Toronto Sun crime-desk guy who's written some well-regarded true-crime Mafia books, but just two novels, including the one you've just read. And he sends you maybe the last remaining copy in THE KNOWN UNIVERSE of his FIRST novel, The Last Thief, and it's MAYBE BETTER.
What the F do you do to help get this guy out there?
And yes, I'm sure there are a bazillion writers in exactly the same situation, wondering exactly the same thing.
So, I'm asking the question, and tellin' ya this: If you can get this guy from amazon.ca, do it.
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada