June 15, 2011

Give Independent and Small Press Books a Chance

This is an exciting time in publishing. Social media, eReaders, and the Internet have vastly changed the book industry. It's easier than ever for an author to get his/her work published. There are some quality works out there now that might not have seen the light of day ten years ago. For authors and enthusiastic readers like myself, this is a blessing.


But there is a flip side. With fewer barriers and cheaper costs associated with publishing, poorer quality books and ebooks are also being produced. I review for a great website, Rebecca's Reads. Most of the books I review are from independent publishers and small presses. The more I'm exposed to these type of books the more I understand why readers are hesitant to embrace them. I'll admit it, some are just plain awful and poorly edited.

I've been involved in book clubs for more than ten years and am an avid reader. Two things I've learned from book clubs. There's rarely a meeting where everyone loves or hates a book, and there are some bad, poorly edited traditionally published books out there.

Readers shouldn't judge all the indpendently published books by the few bad ones. Remember, every basket of apples has at least one rotten one no matter how great the farmer. And a lot of apples with bruises are sweet and tasty once you cut around the bad spots.

Be open-minded when expanding your reading. My suggestion: go to either the 2011 Next Generation Indie Book Awards list or the 2011 Independent Publisher Book Awards list and pick some titles. You may find a diamond in the rough and be the first one on your block to herald the next great author. And, yes, you will find Depression Cookies listed as a Finalist in Chick Lit at the Next Generation site, but don't let that sway you too much.

Finally, the Internet and blog world are full of great review sites for these lesser-known books. I've pointed out BooksYALove and Feathered Quill in previous posts, but there are many.

Will you give a lesser-known novel a chance? If not, why?


Unknown said...

Definitely. I read indie books all the time. I have tons of friends who are putting out good books regularly. There will be more and more available as the ebook industry continues to grow. This is an exciting time for publishing.

Tia Bach said...

Thanks, Jackie. I'm so glad to hear that. I've been discouraged from time to time by people naysaying self-published books. I get it. There's some crap out there, but it's everywhere and not just from independents.

But it is a really exciting time, so I'll take the good with the bad.