Vive la Indie Revolution

Peter Cawdron, Indie author, explains very well why I chose independent publishing.


Over the past few years there’s been a revolution in self-published novels, and it’s far from complete, but it’s healthy and vibrant thanks to Amazon.

Like Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft & Apple, Amazon started in a garage before growing into a multi-national corporation with a staggering US$74 billion dollar turnover in 2013.

Like any large corporation, Amazon has had a checkered past, with claims of tax avoidance in the UK and allegations of poor working conditions in its numerous warehouses.

You can’t accuse Amazon of being a wallflower. It’s an organization with clear goals and aggressive drive, learning from its mistakes and pioneering new markets, such as independent publishing.

Call me naive, but I think Amazon is an intelligent, progressive organisation. Ah, I can hear the cynics already crying, “Amazon’s only after one thing, shareholder profit.” Maybe. Maybe not.

In 1970, Milton Friedman popularized the notion that companies exist for the sole reason of…

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Amazon Launches Short Reads

Forwarding Steve Vernon’s post updating us on Amazon’s new Short Reads.


I still do better at Kobo than I do at Amazon – but that doesn’t negate the fact that Amazon is definitely the 500 pound gorilla in the chimpanzee tent – so I keep a close eye on what Amazon is up to.

Just today they announced a brand new section of the Kindle store dedicated entirely to short stories and quick reads. I think this is a great idea. Whether or not they can run with it is another question entirely.

Only time will tell.

Still, there is a market out there for short stories. You can read a short story on a bus ride to work. You can read a short story before you go to bed. You can read a short story in the doctor’s office. Heck, you can even read a short story while sitting on the throne.

There are readers of all shapes and sizes…

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Being an Indie Author, and Finding Encouragement from Other Authors

As I prepare to release my first full-length young adult novel, I have spent hours ruminating over whether or not I should follow this path. Each time, I come to same conclusion – that even if my book were picked up by a big publisher, I would still retain the rights to e-publish my own work, for a few reasons.

1. I have control of my own stories and creative process. While I have fabulous beta readers and editors, I still retain the right to incorporate – or not – their suggestions.

2. Even if I only sell a couple hundred books (I hope for more, but I try to be realistic), I will still have made far more money per book than I ever would going through a traditional publisher.

3. Yes, there is a lot of dreck out there, but most readers are discerning, and those books that have been well-written and well-edited can be found easily. I’ve read many.

While I ponder these things, I have found encouragement from a writer’s forum, KBoards, and from other indie authors. Hugh Howey is one of those – he has found great success as an independent author with his  Wool series and other books, but he still takes the time to encourage aspiring authors, and to point out encouraging success stories.   Today, he brought my attention to a  great blog post by Alyssa Rose Ivy, another indie author who has had phenomenal success selling her works online. What I love about her post is that she encourages other authors, and shows us the numbers of books she has sold over the last several years. Her first year might have been discouraging for her, but she just kept writing, and because of her great writing, and the team of people she has around her (beta readers, editor, cover designer), she’s sold over 300,000 books.

That’s encouraging. It make me think of Dora’s line in Finding Nemo  – Just keep swimming!