Indie authors get a bad rap, and part of it is well deserved. After all, anybody can self publish a book for free now, and they there isn't as much editing, proofreading, or formatting work done on self published works as there is from the books coming from the big publishers. Unfortunately, this has led to a stereotype that all ebooks or self published books are low quality or poorly written.
By and large, this isn't true. Yes, some lemons do seep into the mix, but the truth is that this can happen as well in the traditional publishing world. There's no way to anticipate what readers want, or when the trends will shift. As such, people with fresh, new ideas and approaches are often passed over not because of lack of quality or merit, but because of lack of confidence in the big decision makers, forcing them to give up or self publish. Thankfully, more are going the second route, and giving readers a golden opportunity to discover new voices and ideas that they would have never had a chance to know even 5 or 10 years ago.
I can testify to this. Move, my paranormal mystery novel, was passed over by one of my epublishers. They weren't comfortable with mixing paranormal with mystery, because their beta readers didn't know what to make of it - it simply wasn't as clear as mixing paranormal with romance, which is very popular right now. They asked me to rewrite the novel without the paranormal element. I thought about it, but it didn't take me long to realize that there was no way to remove the djinn from the book and keep it as the same novel that I wanted it to be. I elected to self publish it as it was - and Move has been my best selling title since I released in in February 2013! I actually wrote and self published a sequel, Obsidian, in October.
My mission this summer is to find more of these novels. The ones that take new directions. The ones that take chances. The ones with vision that they know belongs on your digital shelf whether the "big time" publishers and agents agree or not. I'm bringing these to you this summer. Keep an eye here and on social media through Goodreads, Twitter, and Facebook for my reviews of these treasures. Who knows? You and I might open our eyes to magic that we didn't know existed!
Up now: Exodus, Book 1 of The Exodus Trilogy, by Andrea Christensen. I've read the first three chapters, and I'm hooked. The only reason I haven't read more is because my time has been more limited than I anticipated this weekend.