I’ve been listening to The Fixx a lot lately. Probably one of my favorite bands from the ’80’s who survived the hairspray and keyboards to evolve into something brighter and better than anyone thought possible. But that’s not what this post is about. Although the title was inspired by a line in The Fixx’s song “Liner”, this post is about the on-coming onslaught of indie writers.
If you look off into the horizon you see a massive collection of ice, slowly floating your way. At the very top of that ice-mass is the tip. That tip? Of that ice-mass? That is the future of indie publishing and we have yet to even get close to it.
If you hop on to any indie author forums, or you read enough media, the hailstorm of publicity is being tossed out to the “overnight sensations” and the “wunderkinds” and those that are not the norm. We are hearing that this writer making millions is the exception to the rule and that few will see those kinds of numbers.
Really? What crystal ball are you looking into to make those predictions? Of the countless indie writers out there, those prognosticators claim that only a scant handful of writers will make it “big”? Seriously? Let me break it down, reality style.
Since I purchased my Kindle, three years ago (I was an early adopter), I have read a lot of books. Most of what I have read have been indie writers, like me, trying to make a name for themselves. Out of those books, many of them have been very good, some of them have been good, and a fraction of them have been not so good. At that same time I have purchased very well known writers, at full price, and hated their work. Really? Dan Brown, write a stinker? Oh yes, my friend, oh yes.
If you take a hundred monkeys and put them in a room with a typewriter…
I was an actor for twenty years. I saw actors with no talent make it big and actors with incredible talent struggle to get anywhere. Those actors that couldn’t make it, gave up. Should they have? In many cases (at least the ones that had so much talent)…no. Had they continued working they would have eventually broke through that barrier to entry.
Same thing with indie writers. The best advice given on most of the writer’s forums is “keep at it and eventually you’ll catch a break.” The way I see it, if I keep working at this, writing as much as I can and doing so from my heart, I’ll catch my break. One of my books will catch fire and the rest will fall into place.
I believe in me just like I believe in all the other indie writers out there trying like crazy to make their way in this bright new world. What we are doing is creating extraordinary worlds for readers to visit and visit on the cheap. And we are creating those worlds en masse. The tip of this iceberg is still off in the distance and who knows how many of us will be standing on top.