Gary D. McGugan
Independently Published (2019)
Review and interview by Sheri Hoyte for Reader Views (8/19)
Gary D. McGugan loves to tell stories and is the author of Three Weeks Less a Day, The Multima Scheme, and Unrelenting Peril. Whether sharing a vision with colleagues in large multinational corporations, helping consulting clients implement expert advice, or writing a corporate thriller, Gary uses artful suspense to entertain and inform. His launch of a new writing career—at an age most people retire—reveals an ongoing zest for new challenges and a life-long pursuit of knowledge. Home may be in Toronto, but his love of travel and broad business knowledge accumulated from extensive experiences around the globe are evident in every chapter Gary writes.
Hi Gary, Welcome to Reader Views – thank you for joining us again to talk about the final book in your Multima corporate intrigue series, Unrelenting Peril. What is this story all about?
Thanks for the invitation, Sheri. It’s great to be with you again! Unrelenting Peril is a fast-paced story of organized crime’s increasingly bold attempts to infiltrate and control fictional Multima Corporation. The story takes place on four continents as CEO Suzanne Simpson and her leadership team try desperately to ward off repeated attacks on multiple fronts. It’s truly a story of corporate intrigue!
As the final book in your series, did you have a notion about how you wanted to bring it all together and wrap things up? Did you know Unrelenting Peril would be the final book for the Multima series when you started the project?
I decided early in the process writing Three Weeks Less a Day that I would need three books to tell the complete story. I used The Multima Scheme to dramatically advance the overall mission, and always intended to bring it all together in Unrelenting Peril. As a father and grandfather, I passionately want to see women assume many more influential roles in the corporate world. This trilogy provides a platform to entertain and engage as I portray that passion.
The characters that really stand out to me in all three books, but more significantly in Unrelenting Peril, are your female characters. I admire and appreciate them all, even (and maybe especially), the “bad” girls. The depth and authenticity in which you portray them are phenomenal. What were some hurdles you faced when writing from the perspective of the opposite sex and how did you handle those challenges?
I’m glad you enjoyed the women! Clearly, development of each of the female characters required proportionately more effort for me than the males, but my interest in promoting and encouraging women in business started early. I coached and mentored several women during my 40-year career with multinational corporations and learned much from their challenges and experiences. I think readers will sense this valuable experience I gained working closely with women.
And, which one of those female characters surprised you the most in their development? Which one was the most intriguing to write and why?
Janet Weissel is one of my favorites. She is strong and resilient and overcomes a variety of challenges – some of her own making, other from circumstances imposed on her. I tell her story in a way that certainly exposes her character flaws, but help readers perhaps understand why she made decisions and how she coped with the considerable obstacles she encountered.
How realistic is the threat of a mobster organization infiltrating the corporate world?
Very realistic. It may be one of the greatest threats to the capitalist system as we know it.
What distinguishes your Multima corporate intrigue series from others in the genre?
To be candid, I don’t know. Unlike some authors, I don’t think of other writers as competitors and don’t analyze other works in my genre to either emulate or differentiate. I like to think I’m writing stories about life and life challenges and use a corporate backdrop because that’s the environment I know most intimately.
What have you learned over the course of writing the Multima Series? What is one thing you wish you knew when you started out?
It’s been about 4,560 days since I started writing Three Weeks Less a Day, the first in the series. I like to tell people I learn something new virtually every day! So, I can’t begin to describe all I’ve learned – and continue to learn — in the process.
What can you tell us about your publishing experience? How did it differ from book to book?
For Three Weeks Less a Day, I worked with Friessen Press a small Canadian firm. I had an enjoyable experience working with them but elected to publish The Multima Scheme with another Canadian publisher, Tellwell Talent.
Despite good experiences with both, I learned the value of publishers for emerging authors is somewhat limited. In the final analysis, promotion and publicity really rely on the author, so I self-published Unrelenting Peril. Self-publishing lets me keep more of the income the books generate.
Any tips for new authors about the publishing experience?
I encourage aspiring writers to join a good writer’s community. Within most of these communities, we find other writers who are also publishers, graphic artists, editors, and proofreaders. Often, these local resources will be more helpful than a publisher.
You have an amazing number of personal appearances planned. What do you enjoy most about the marketing aspect?
Yes, this year I’m getting excellent support from Canada’s largest bookseller Indigo / Chapters. I’ll make more than 80 personal appearances in their stores in Ontario and Quebec. These events allow me to meet individual readers and chat with them about my books. I genuinely love to meet the people who read my stories. For me, this is unequivocally the best part of marketing!
What does literary success look like to you?
I write to entertain. If feedback from readers affirms they enjoy my writing, I consider that to be success. Clearly, writing must be commercially viable to continue in the longer-term, but I’m confident sales will continue to grow as people read and talk about my stories with their friends and family.
Have you had any requests to continue the series? I know I’m experiencing a bit of withdrawal!
Yes! I’m getting lots of interest from readers. While my next book won’t be a continuation of the Multima series, I’m considering another story for 2021.
Now that you have a successful trilogy under your belt, what’s next in terms of your writing career?
In 2020, I’ll release another suspense novel. The new book won’t use Multima Corporation in the background but will feature three characters readers have come to know in the trilogy. I think people will enjoy the entirely new paths I create for them!
Do you have anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
Yes. I’d like to thank every reader for his or her support! I always encourage folks to let me know how they find my stories, and I read every email or comment they may post. And I want to also thank you, Sheri, for your reviews of all three stories. I’m sure those who have not yet read my stories will truly benefit from your critical reads and assessments!
Gary, thank you so much for visiting Reader Views today, and over the last few weeks. It has truly been a pleasure talking with you about your Multima series!
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For readers living in Canada, Gary has personal appearances planned in more than 80 locations of Canada’s largest bookseller – Chapters/Indigo between April and November 2019. Stop by and say hello. Visit his website to find a list of his upcoming events: https://www.garydmcguganbooks.com/news–events.html