Being independent … and insight for discourse


I’ve caught all the negatives, the warnings and bad forebodings about independent publishing. I even read some tripe about how the big publishers put out 50k books a day. Yes, I called it tripe!
That doesn’t even include the idea that the author, an editor – self proclaimed I’d say – claimed to be a fan of the subject he was editing and that made him uniquely qualified to tell everyone else how it’s done.
All I can say to that man is – RUBBISH! BALDERDASH! HOAKEM!
Big companies cookie cutter the life out of a subject – they don’t produce 50k books a day, but 1 book 50k times with new proper nouns. But I digress…

Part of the reason I’m on my own is creative control. I’m a writer and not a carbon copy of my associates, friends and professional relations. Too many editors rarely actually read a manuscript, no sir. In my day you had to thoroughly read all material thrice! The first time to get an idea of what the story is about. The second to get the pacing and the third is to locate the inconsistencies, grammar/spelling errors where applicable.
The job is NOT to critique, but to work with the artist so readers can understand sentences, paragraphs and pages sans a translator or confusion.
How a story is to be told is SOLELY the province of the author! You can’t tell a story how to be told if it insists it works best in a certain perspective. Period.
Another part is the fact that rarely, if at all, will the publishers actually cover the expenses of the writer who actually has to plug their work on their on – despite the big company having and army of marketers. In other words, if I have to do it all – why do I need them?
Next, I can’t afford to pay a solicitor/lawyer a chunk of my earnings for him or her doing little to nothing. I did take business law in tertiary school as well as criminal law – Why would I need a stuffed shirt that’s over paid for?
True, in the independent arena, the earnings aren’t great, but they’re better than paying a do nothing publisher who only is responsible for printing your work out into a physical reading material piece… or something like that.
Another added nail in the editors coffin – I understand rejection. I understand it quite well. However, an editor is in NO position to tell me what’s marketable and what isn’t period. I point to the examples of big publishing failures starting with Mary Shelley and ending currently with J.K. Rowling.
Do note that I consider the likes of Twilight and Eragon pure RUBBISH designed to pander to those young readers who were in limbo after Harry Potter. I find it very distasteful on the big boys part as there are thousands of writers of higher quality who DON’T use cut and paste and tripe for filler and call it a story, thanks very much.
How can these people make such melodramatic claims of no appreciable new content to put out when they snub all the quality every day?
This leads to the marketing axe to grind. Don’t tell me what DOES and DOESN’T sell!!! Especially on the American side of the pond with their mood rings, pet rocks, chia pets and Stephanie Meyer!!
Touching on the creative freedom side again;
I like being able to pick and choose which tales to write up and sell. I believe in the reading public more than I believe in some slighted or heavily biased poll where answers are ignored.
So, once again, why go to a corporation when I can go directly to my reading audience and let them have direct say? I know I’ll never sell out – especially to those who ignored, called me unproven or unmarketable, or just scoffed saying this is not what the readers of the world want.
This may sound of the purist, but I believe you should tell the story in your heart and not the one on a marketing board of a big publisher. Does it cost to get work out? When hasn’t it? For the independent writer and artist there’s more control and a better reason to use your education to its fullest.
I know this may seemed a bit scattered and repetitive at times, but when it comes to writing – sometimes you need to repeat yourself as so much is intertwined.

For now, peace and good reading to all!

~ yours truly The Pirate Poet

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