Thursday, November 11, 2010

What Is This INDIE Business, Anyway?

Charlie's ranting on someone else's blog this week. Author Joel Blaine Kirkpatrick from The Tale's the Thing, hammers author Charlie Courtland with questions. He is daring enough to post the answers for his followers to read. What a crazy, crazy, man!

I've answered several interesting questions this week, including who I prefer Patrick Stewart or Kevin Costner. I'm not sure what my answer says about me, but I know my choice is the correct one. The latest question asked was about the subject of 'indie.' What is the definition and why should readers support this growing industry. Of course, I can't help but to approach this topic with a sense of humor, but I do sprinkle my answers with sincere seriousness.

Excerpt from interview:

Q:  Would you please define, for our readers, what is an Indy author – and, why should they be supported?
I-N-D-I-E is short for independent and I'm told that the proper spelling is with 'ie' and not the 'y' (indy) which refers to Indiana or car racing.
Indie Author: An obscure person which you only learn about from someone slightly more hip than yourself. Often associated with persons affiliated with small publishing and not under a contract of a major house. In other words, an author with little financial backing so they can claim they are not 'sell-outs', while leering in disgust at those who have fat advancements. What is the importance of being indie? And, why do some of us actually choose this route? Like the trail blazers before us in the music and movie industry, Indie is a state of mind. A writer maintains a certain sense of freedom and empowerment when maintaining control over their written word.
So let's break it down:
I = Inspired - Your gut guides, your brain motivates. It's what you are meant to do.
N = Non-traditional - Understand the 'rules' but are fearless and can veer from them. If everyone wrote the same, books would be boring! Example: Mass media trends. Yuck. Amen!
D = Determined - You're going to have to market anyway, so why not do it yourself?
I = Innovative - Finding new ways to reach people, network and love what you do.
E= Empowered - Control, control, control. Own it. Don't wait for someone else or something to magically come along and say, 'Gee, we might like you.' Yeah, it takes guts, but you can't go Indie without them.
What I-N-D-I-E doesn't stand for: I can't get published or have been rejected so I went this route because I had no other choice. Unfortunately, some very misguided individuals share this way of thinking and misinformed definition.
Believe it or not, and I know this is a total shocker, but I am one of those CRAZY author's who chooses to go Indie. I have never written a query or submitted a 300 word synopsis followed by rejection notices. I thought, I can either spend my day and money on penning query letters and licking stamps, OR I can pay a fraction of the cost, have my work edited and do the rest myself. At least when I make that $.64, it will be MY $.64 -- no one gets a cut or chunk. Do I sell millions? Nope, but most authors whether Indie or mass market don't.
Is there a lot of drudge out there? Why, all areas of entertainment from music to movies and most certainly in books. However, some of the best music and movies I've listened to or seen, are classified as 'Indie' -- take the Sun Dance Film Festival for example if you need proof. I'm from Seattle, so the grunge scene is near and dear to my heart. You see where I'm going with this, right? As I compile my best of 2010 reading list I'm not the least bit surprised to find my top choices are by Indie authors. Truly, they were some of the best works I read this year.
To read more of the interview, visit the site and show The Tale's the Thing some love. OR maybe you have another question? If so, feel free to leave a comment either here or at Joel's blog and I will do my best to answer it, honestly, if not a bit comically.


1 comment:

  1. Great question...and answer! I admire you indie authors, I really do. =O)


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