Tag Archives: Author

Why I’m an indie author

If I was under a contract to a big company, I could only write the books that  I was under contract for. I could write other things, but I’d likely have to sit on them for a different deal,  or have to publish them under another publisher, under a pseudonym.

As an indy, I can publish whatever I want whenever I choose to.

Advantage: indie pub

Independent Truck Company logo

Independent Truck Company logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If I was under a contract to a big company, I  would be hampered to writing in just one genre, and just one style. If I was signed for one series, I would be forced to write for that series alone. If it was for novels (it often is) I could only write novels and not short stories or non-fiction (the exception being if they help to drive interest to your contracted novels, and if they don’t affect your contract time).

[Of course Steven King, James Patterson, and J.K. Rawlings are exceptions to this rule.]

Indy pub authors, on the other hand, can write and publish whatever  I want and when I want to. I can  start one series, then another, then  put out an unrelated short story or a non-fiction work. I have that freedom.

ADVANTAGE: INDIE PUB

People under contract to a big publisher have no control over how their work is presented.

Indy pub authors control every aspect. The cover art is what they chose, as are the fonts (for a hardcopy book; for eBooks it’s still not under your control) and even illustrations inside the book .

You can print on demand and/or e-publish on Kindle/Nook/epub/Smashwords/whatever you choose.

[If you pick the  Kindle KDP program you can’t try another for 90 days..]

ADVANTAGE: INDIE PUB

Audiobook? Indy Pub authors can do this at will, and profit from it. Authors on contract can too — if they’re on the contact to get paid for it. Otherwise the publisher might produce one, but all profits go to them.

ADVANTAGE: INDIE PUB

To play Devil’s Advocate, there is a big negative: all the costs (art, editing, advertising, etc.) come to you. After your first work sells, you can set money aside for the next one, but that first one may cost a lot.

advantage: traditional pub

Novels in a Polish bookstore

Novels in a Polish bookstore (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The one minus doesn’t outweigh the positives though.

 

No Fiction While I Write

English: This image is a reproduction of an or...

English: This image is a reproduction of an original painting by renowned science-fiction and fantasy illustrator Rowena http://www.rowenaart.com/. It depicts Dr. Isaac Asimov enthroned with symbols of his life’s work. Français : Peinture de Rowena Morill montrant Isaac Asimov sur un trône décoré des symboles de son œuvre littéraire. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Let me explain: I write fiction, and I do read it and have my favorite authors (among them Isaac Asimov, Spider Robinson, Elmore Leonard and Mark Twain) but while I’m writing I don’t read other fiction.

English: Elmore Leonard, Miami Book Fair Inter...

English: Elmore Leonard, Miami Book Fair International, 1989 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The reasons are many. First off are to avoid plagiarism. When I’m trying to keep my own voice in all my fiction, make sure that all of my plot twists are of my own devising, I want to ensure that nothing in my prose has come from someone else’s work.

When you start to write, you copy from your influences… I still have some in my own work that hearken back to Spider — but the chosen words and fiction itself is purely my own.

Another reason that I don’t read other fiction while I write is that influence. I built others into my ‘voice’ when I write, but this comes from reading them for years. If it came from reading them now, that would really mess me up.

So, right now I’m reading non-fiction — but when I write non-fiction, I’ll only read fiction, for the same reasons.

There is a negative side to this: it’s been about 2 years since I began to write my current novel, which means that I haven’t read any other novels in that time.

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