This post, by Ian Edward, originally appeared on his Take It As Read blog on 1/13/11.
One of the most inspiring aspects of the rise of the "indie" author/publisher, and the spread of ereader devices and ebooks, has been the willingness and honesty of writers to share their experiences. Not just about the craft of writing and editing, but also the mechanics of publishing, of promotion, of pricing and distribution and networking.
This caring and sharing comes not just from big-name bestselling authors, but from a diverse range of those practicing the craft -from mid-listers through to newbies, from the traditionally published to the self-published.
Of course, mainstream media has always had interviews with well known authors and their path to success, but those articles were heavily edited, diplomatic transcripts. Imagine if there’d been a Wiki-leaks back then to reveal what some of those guys really thought about the ‘biz.
What is different now is the sheer volume of viewpoints accessible via the web – plus the fact that what you’re reading is coming straight from the keyboard to you, from authors who are opening up with a no holds-barred honesty about the ins and outs of publishing.
All this info is invaluable. And it’s free.
It’s then up to you and I to sift through and analyse what’s best for us, and what isn’t.
J. A. Konrath’s blog, A Newbie’s Guide To Publishing has been around a few years and is one of the pioneers of this warts-and-all approach. Joe was an early adopter/predictor of the rise of ebooks and of reasonable, affordable pricing. Joe is both traditionally published, and an "indie," foot-in-both-camps at various times. Thankfully, this hasn’t stopped him from being highly vocal about many elements of traditional publishers and the NY6 (sounds like an evil cabal, but it’s actually just an affectionate (?) term for the six big New York publishing corporations.)
When I first set out to set up my own small book imprint, and launch my own novel, I had no idea all this advice from others doing similar things, was out there.
I’m glad it was.
Some of the authors I’ve been following lately, and gleaning plenty from their experiences, are the following: