A few Christmases ago, when my loved ones asked what I “really” wanted for Christmas, I gave them a list of book titles. All were by Indie authors, or published by Indie/small presses. Some had multiple reviews, some only one or two.
And when I chose gifts for special occasions, it was either a potted bulb or a book by an Indie author, or both. (Sometimes, a bottle of wine replaced the plant.)
I’ve continued that pattern.
Where suitable, I also read excerpts to the Memoir-writing group that I coach. It’s important to celebrate strong, but lesser-known writers.
Oh, I read the big bestsellers by the famous authors. But I’m not part of that club and they won’t miss my purchase. I have limited funds; I choose to support authors whose books are published by tiny presses, or by themselves.
The way I see it, the bigtime authors will still get my support, via the public library. Local libraries are among my favourite places on earth and librarians are stars. I borrow the famous books there.
But Indie authors and presses need my money.
I don’t buy any-and-all Indie books, of course. I pass over badly-written books, ones with too many typos, or whose subject or plot doesn’t appeal to my taste.
But I buy books by bloggers whose writing I admire, books by members of my authors’ group, or ones whose reviews (often by other bloggers or word-of-mouth) make them worth the money.
I need to do more reviews, though. One night recently, I remembered: I hadn’t reviewed some of the Indie books I had read earlier. So I reread them and posted the first reviews online. (More later.)
As I write, I’ve just finished reading two books, one borrowed from the library (Julian Barnes’ prize-winning The Sense of an Ending) and Laurie Graves’ Indie-published Library Lost, which I bought. Both compelled my attention; both were superbly written.
Library Lost is the second in the Maya and the Book of Everything series. Brilliantly plotted with well-drawn characters, both books have delightful twists and turns.
I love a well-written book, and I know how difficult it is to produce one. When a good book is also produced by an independent author or small press, I appreciate it even more.