C h a z z W r i t e s . c o m

Write and publish with love and fury.

My Indie Author Mistake

Crack the Indie Author CodeIf I had to do it again, I wouldn’t call my first writing guide Crack the Indie Author Code. It’s on my sales page and proclaims to everyone I’m indie. Don’t get me wrong. I’m proud to be indie! I make lots of friends here who are indie authors or are aspiring indie authors. I buy inde books and feature indie authors. I’ve learned and gained so much from being part of the indie community.

However, we shouldn’t look indie.

When someone picks up our books, it should not occur to them that it doesn’t come from a traditional (read: huge) publishing house.

A bookstore clerk looked at my books and loved them, adding that they obviously weren’t from CreateSpace. The logo on the spines for my publishing EP IIcompany is Ex Parte Press, but yes, the print copies are done by CreateSpace.  His perception of where it came from affected his expectations.

To a lot of people, indie means amateurish. I know, it sucks and indie musicians and filmmakers don’t have this stigma. Lots of traditionally published books suck yadda yadda. We know. I’m not happy about unfair comparisons, either.

However, let’s help prejudiced people overcome those prejudices by fooling them. Make sure your cover is awesome, your writing is sharp and standards are high. Once they turn from readers to fans, let your indie freak flag fly.

Crack the Indie Author Code will be disappearing from my sales pages soon. It will still be for sale, but it will be pushed down the page by my This Plague of Days serial. It’s eight books plus the print version plus secret variations to come. That will take up a lot of real estate on my Amazon page.

Go here for sneak peaks of This Plague of Days. It’s horror, with twists from Latin dictionaries. 

And GO INDIE! (Sh…Stealth indie.)

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7 Responses

  1. M. L. Sexton says:

    Thanks for the mention! Glad to contribute!

  2. vst3in says:

    Thanks for this! My first book, carefully edited and vetted, with a well-designed cover, was scorned for being published by my Dad, through the publishing company he established. It’s mine now, and I know that this is the very work I have yet to do.

    • Chazz says:

      “Scorn” is odd, isn’t it? Makes you think something else is going on there in the head of the scorner.

      • vst3in says:

        Yes! I never thought I’d battle that with a beautifully edited and designed book, but there is a funny divide I’m trying still to understand.

  3. Leigh Wilder says:

    Even as an indie writer I shy away from titles that simply *look* indie. Cover design and formatting are so so important. I know a lot of us can’t afford professional covers, but a writer should at least *attempt* a decent looking book.

    • Chazz says:

      I understand. The first cover I ever did sucked (but I got rid of it once I hooked up with Kit Foster of KitFosterDesign.com.) I think most people are trying their best and making that attempt but the learning curve is steep and we’re all somewhere on that curve. I’ve seen a lot more decent looking books lately. I’m sure the indie field is getting better.

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