Monday, November 14, 2011

Why I Think the Argument Against Indie is a Load of Crap

How many times have you heard this statement?
Self published books are all poorly edited slush.


It seems to be a blanket generalization making its way around cyber space faster than a trojan horse.
And you know what? Just like all generalizations and stereotypes, it's a load of CRAP.
There! I said it.

Now let's look briefly, at what that statement implies: If all indie books are poorly edited slush, then all traditionally published books must be wonderful because they've been edited professionally.

Sure, traditional published books have been professionally edited. I will give you that much. But are all traditionally published books wonderful?

* Snicker *

I can't tell you how many traditionally published books I've wasted good money on only to be disappointed and wonder how the failed plot lines, badly developed characterizations and dropped story elements and let's face it, the poor writing, even made it to an agent in the first place. Then to be published?

ACK! It's enough to make me pull my hair out!

But does that mean all traditional books are bad? Of course not, silly! It just means a few bad ones "slip through the cracks" so to speak.

Tradionally published books can play both sides of the fence - poorly written and badly edited...as well as fantastic, unforgettable stories with great plot lines and characterizations - the same can also be said for indie.

So while it's true that there are some really badly written, poorly edited indie books out there, the converse is true as well. There are some really terrific indie books. It's just people have a hard time finding them or are so turned off by the stereo type they won't take a chance. I think it's time to put an end to that stereotype.

And I'm not saying all indie authors will - or should - end up like Amanda Hocking....because let's face it, she's a one in a million just like Stephenie Meyer and JK Rowling. I'm just saying we need to give them a chance.

In closing, just for a moment, apply the argument against indie to say....food at the grocery store.

Jane: I only buy national brand food. I'll never buy store brand. It's poorly manufactured crap.
Mary: Really? I love the store brand. Not only do I get a bargain, but most of the time I'm happy with it and my family doesn't know the difference.

I don't know about you, but I'm happy to buy store brand. And I'm happy to support indie authors!

9 comments:

C. K. Bryant said...

Oooh, a girl after my own heart. I totally agree with this and not because I've just released my first INDIE novel, but because I've seen good and bad in both INDIE and traditional publications. Let the quality of the book stand for itself. Great post, Amie.

KarenG said...

I'm with you. I've even read bestsellers that were so seriously in need of editing, that I was just mad. A big publisher with all that money and editing staff can't bother to get in there and do a good job? And I've read a few self-published Kindle books that were excellent.

Aimee said...

Good editing is key to a good book no matter how it is published. I've read poorly edited books and awesome books in both categories. Great post, Amie.

Laura Pauling said...

I'm with you. I read the samples so i always know what I'm downloading. I don't just buy b/c a story is 2.99 or 99 cents. Just like I read the first pages of trad. pubbed novel and have decided against reading them too.

I usually hear through word of mouth. I think that's really important with indie books. Two I've read recently that were incredible were Open Minds by Susan Kaye Quinn and Become by Ali Cross. Incredible writing that caught the down trend of a genre.

Terri Tiffany said...

Great points! And I agree--it is the editing that makes the difference. If I were going to self-publish, I would hire a professional editor to clean my work up so I know I'm putting the best I can out there.
I have trashed so many traditional books and wondered how they ever were agented.

Anita said...

My A SCARY GOOD BOOK (it's for kids ages 8-12) is well-edited. I'm a newspaper book columnist and an MFA student and I don't write junk. Thank you!

J. A. Bennett said...

I think the general public looks at self-published books as "you've read one = you've read all" Which is of course not true. I've read a slew of poorly edited self-pub books and slew of brilliant ones, it all depends on the writer. Great post!

Nisa said...

Yea for Indie authors! I love them. :D

Meredith said...

Ha, I've definitely read some horrible traditionally published books! Great post. :)