The publishing world is changing. Fast. A brief look at some writers blogs out there (Dean Wesley Smith, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Joe Konrath) will orient you to the changes. I can sum it up briefly in one word: Indie.
The indie movie industry and the indie music industry are well established. It is, simply, when an artists takes control of their art and brings it as directly as possible to the consumer. Less corporate-centric, more artist-centric.
Until recently the only term for this in the publishing world was “self-publishing,” or worse yet “vanity publishing.” It held a stigma to it that if you couldn’t convince a company to invest in your art, it wasn’t worth while. There were gate keepers that had to be dealt with. The only way around them was difficult and expensive (printing your own books in quantity, getting distribution, getting stores to buy them, etc.)
With the rising popularity of eBooks and the ease of POD (print on demand), this stigma is evaporating as quality indie work gets published. With Amazon and Barnes and Noble it is now easy for an author to get their works out. And indie authors are starting sell large numbers of books (Amanda Hocking has sold around 1 million of her books in the last year).
“Indie” seems to be the new moniker, which, appropriately, aligns it with the indie move and indie music scenes.
I am in the final stages of writing a novel, which I plan to go indie with (perhaps down the road I will discuss the why of that decision). I have decided to document this process here. I have two main goals:
- Document the process for my own use as a reference. I think this will go a long way in helping me learn the lessons I need to learn.
- Help other authors wanting to go indie. The numbers are growing, and perhaps these posts will be of use.
I am at the beginning of the process, so instead of looking back in retrospect, I will be going forward step by step and documenting the good, the bad, and the ugly of what I am doing and learning.
I do have a background in old-school self-publishing. In 1994, my wife and I formed Little Hummingbird Publishing to publish her book Rainbow Warriors Awake! An Invitation to Remember. In 1999 we published a fractal video that my wife, a musician friend in New York, and myself created called LightTones – A Journey of Color, Music and Fractal Imagery.
I learned a lot from those experiences, including how difficult it is to reach an audience, and how very much time and effort it takes. I am hopeful that the current environment will be considerably easier (although I don’t expect it to be “easy”).
I also have a background in business. I have been making a living as a freelance programmer for most of the last 20 years. I also have been a part of quite a few corporations, and have extensive accounting experience. I will, hopefully, be applying these experiences to this endeavor.
I am at the starting line. A nearly finished novel and a lot to learn and do to get it out the public. So the adventure begins. I don’t know where this is going or how it will turn out, but it should be interesting.