The Accidental Revolutionist
I’m a middle child—a peacemaker. I’m not very political, and I’m definitely not a revolutionist. But there’s a revolution going on right now. It’s the Indie revolution. It’s the revolution of self-publishing. And somehow, I find myself in the middle of it.
I guess that makes me an accidental revolutionist.
Many indies, or self-published authors, are no longer mumbling under their breath when asked who their publisher is. They are holding their heads high. They are saying, “I’m an indie writer. I am self-published.”
They are tired of being stigmatized for no other reason than being an indie.
They are tired of the presumption that their writing is second rate simply because they are self-published.
They are tired of having to be apologetic. In fact, many refuse to apologize, instead embracing their “Indie-hood.”
The post drew more than 50 comments in less than 24 hours, mostly from those who feel mainstream newspapers unfairly dismiss independent authors. Rosie Cochran, for instance, wrote, “Change worries people. They like the status quo. No Room at the Inn for Indies does well to show that self-publishing has taken off, causing changes that traditional publishers, and obviously the newspaper world, are not ready for.”
Our world is changing. As traditional publishers offer less services to their authors—and expect more from them—even some traditionally published authors have turned to self-publishing. They want more control over their work. They want to be able to say if the book will become an e-book. They want greater input into the cover design, a quicker timetable for publishing, and a say in the pricing of their books. And yes, they want the better royalties that indies can enjoy.
Granted, not all indie books or authors are equal—but neither are all traditionally published books or authors. But to be judged solely by a label?
I’ve watched as exceptional indie authors have been offered book deals through traditional publishers.
Some accept—and for good reasons. They know who they are. They know they are writers. They know they are not entrepreneurs. They want a publisher to take care of the details. They just want to do what they love. They want to write.
Some, such as John Locke, have rejected the offers, feeling strongly about the indie revolution and the benefits of being an indie. Some entered the world of publishing as indies—and plan to go out as indies. They are writers blended with strong entrepreneurial spirits.
Both sides have merit.
For now, I’m an indie. Am I a die-hard indie that will never seek publication? I’m undecided there. Though self-published, I’m not against traditional publishing. What I am against is indie books being thrown out of court before the case is even tried.
As indies, we know we’ll make mistakes—but we will learn from our mistakes. We invite constructive criticism, knowing it will hone our craft. We do not ask for preferential treatment. We do not ask to be given credit where credit is not deserved. We only ask that we not be rejected solely based on our indie status.
The indie revolution is about progression, about moving forward. At times it feels like one step forward, then two steps back.
A post written by Dave Lee for the BBC News felt like a step forward. It didn’t offer outright acceptance, but the hope of acceptance. It was a ray of light peeking out from behind the dark clouds of rejection. It was just what this accidental revolutionist needed to hear. Hope is a powerful thing.
- No Room at the Inn for Indies
- No Room at the Inn for Indies – Part II
- An Army of Authors and Friends!
- The authors who are going it alone online—and winning!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rosie Cochran
I am a pastor’s wife, former missionary, mother of four great sons, and author of three books: Betrayed, Identity Revealed, and A Murder Unseen. (Available at: Amazon.com.) I have a passion for God, my family, and writing! Follow me on Twitter and Facebook.
Have a question? Email Me!
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