The Current Writer Rampage Against Indie Publishing
There's been a lot of commentary from various folks in the publishing industry about how detrimental indie publishing is to the industry as a whole.
Over the last couple of weeks, we've heard from Steve Zacharius, CEO of Kensington Publishing; Robert Gottlieb, Chairman of Trident Media Group; and Donald Maass of The Donald Maass Literary Agency. It makes sense these folks will whine because indie writers are cutting into their bottom line. Submissions are down, and the ones coming in aren't of the usual quality. Not to mention, writers already signed to these people are leaving in droves.
Here's the thing: these people, like Chuck and Suw, assume they don't write shit. Why? Because they were chosen by the establishment before the changes to distribution changed the game.
That's right. They feel they are the Chosen Ones.
Therefore, they could not possibly write shit.
And everyone else must because they weren't chosen.
When someone like me publishes, someone who wasn't chosen, it creates cognitive dissonance in those who believe they are chosen. Quite simply, they can't deal with the stress of two, in this case allegedly, contradictory realities, and so they lash out, even though they claim to support indie publishing and may even indie publish themselves.
It goes back to what I've said before. The playing field is no longer a step pyramid, but a level plane.
Sad to say, it's not just an attitude from total strangers. Many of my traditionally published friends, who read my work prior to February of 2011, told me they didn't understand why I hadn't attracted an agent, why an editor who'd asked for a full had turned me down. These same people then told me I was giving up, I was lazy, I was cheating by indie publishing when I made my announcement. So, which version of what these writers friends told me was the truth and which was the lie concerning the quality of my writing?
As I've said before, once you get beyond the basics of craft (which a writer should ALWAYS master before trying to publish by ANY method), the concept of shit is totally relative. For example, some folks inhale romance while others equate with eating cow anuses. And frankly, the folks that hate it DON'T MATTER.
What we writers like means almost nothing to readers. They like what they like. They buy what they buy. Writers criticizing each other for paths taken/not taken means nothing to them. If a story really is shit, the readers won't buy it.
So what are the chosen writers truly worried about? That some reader will pay for my unchosen book and not theirs.
Readers just want a good story. They won't even see the so-called shit. It's really that simple.
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