Maybe because writers are enamored of words, we’re always seeking definitions. Yesterday on twitter I didn’t quite avoid reading a diatribe about what those of us who publish our own work should call ourselves. My choice is on display at the top of this blog. Ask me, and I’ll tell you that my last three novels have all been indie published. This is the same thing as self published, but the synonym I prefer is “indie.” It sounds better to my ears, and is entirely accurate in that I have — independently — pursued, overseen, contracted for, or done myself, every aspect of the publishing process. But the comments on twitter passionately rejected my terminology, to the point of name calling.
To which I can only say, suit yourself and I’ll do the same. In the end, it’s not about the publisher or the publication process, it’s about the book.
Another twitter post referred to an article with a title something like “Ten Indie Writers You Should Be Reading” … as if the fact of being an indie writer was recommendation enough. But wouldn’t an article on “Ten Novels Worth Your Time And Money” be more useful? I know, I know—not as catchy, but again, it’s the book that matters, right?
In recent years I’ve changed the process that I use to get published, but my goal with each novel is the same as it’s always been: I want to write the sort of story I would love to read, and I want to make a living doing it. I don’t see any need to define my novels as either traditional or indie. They’re all books that I wrote because I wanted to write them — and that’s a huge privilege, and I’m grateful for it.