How the Hell did my Unknown Book Become an Amazon Bestseller, When it’s Not Even Out Yet?

I’ve been a writer for 35 years now, but in all that time I never wrote or published a book.

So, I was completely in the dark about what would happen when I published my first novel. That happened just last week, but because I haven’t received the proofs for the paperback yet, I put the novel on Amazon as a pre-order, to be delivered on March 15.

A couple of days ago I was shocked to see the book had hit #76 on the Bestseller List for Hard Science Fiction, and #248 for Post-Apocalyptic Fiction, which is actually a very competitive category. I thought, man, if it stays there I’m the happiest guy in the world.

(Although, admittedly, I’m dying to get in the Top 10, at which point I would become very hard to live with! See my ingratiating, self-serving blog post HERE.)

Anyhow, I woke up this morning, bleary from a three-day head cold, or maybe Kelowna’s first case of coronavirus, and took a gander at my Amazon page. Then I spewed coffee all over my keyboard. As of this post the book hit #23 for High Tech Sci Fi (my favourite genre, by the way) and moved into the Top 100 for the highly competitive Post Apocalyptic Fiction category at #93. You can SEE THE BOOK PAGE HERE.

And that’s for a book in pre-order.

Please keep in mind that I have done nothing intelligent whatsoever in terms of marketing. I basically put out word to some of my friends, started this blog, sent a few copies to reviewers who haven’t even read it yet, and then went along my usual merry way.


Is there another Gary Symons out there who’s a major author? Do people just really like the cover? Is it the book description, or maybe are people just really interested in the topic of climate change in a futuristic Earth? I’m hoping it’s the latter, but who knows.

Obviously, I know I shouldn’t be writing any of this, or even thinking it out loud. I should take credit (somehow) for my brilliant writing or marketing or something. Instead, I am happily baffled.

One thing I am going to do, though, is publish the first three chapters of my novel on this site, so people can actually read a sizeable excerpt and make an informed decision. I actually think the book is quite good; I was truly inspired by the topic and put a tremendous amount of work into the background research which informs the story, and I think it humanizes the topic of climate change in a way that’s been missing in the overall discussion. So, there’s that.

But only a small number of people who have bought the book have actually read an excerpt, so I’m going to fix that today.

To those of you who have bought a copy of Burning Earth: Climate Wars, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. It means a lot.

For those of you who haven’t, please make a rash and uninformed decision, and plunk down some of your kid’s tuition money, and buy 10 or 20 copies. If I could get to the Top 10, I would literally laugh my ass off.

Thanks again, Gary Symons

Published by Gary Symons

Gary Symons is a former investigative journalist, and currently an entrepreneur working in the Clean Tech industry. He is also an author, having recently completed his first novel Burning Earth: Climate Wars.

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