Thursday, February 16, 2012

An Honest Look at the Indies


...it's all about putting out heartfelt work and then after that, Indie Authors and Indie Books gets my Honest VOTE!

But here's the thing, too. Books published by mainstream publishers have the edge when it comes to visual quality. Nothing beats the visual that doesn't turn the eyes inward. Today, mainstream publishers are putting out some really visually aesthetic books. Back in the day it wasn't like this. Mainstream publishers back then were in the business of selling stories, I presume. Go back and look at those old books. Nothing but pure jumpy text laying on thick yellow paper, and just about hand sewn to plain cloth covers.


Now, I'm not sure if this is what really happened but I'm going to go on and assume one of the literates started telling people who were not privy to what was going on in these books, what was going on in these books. People must have been clamoring to see what the big fuss was about, but couldn't see a thing for all this jumpy text. That's when someone must have shouted out, "hey, maybe if we add some visual-ness to all this jumpy stuff, then maybe people will see what the big deal is with the jumpy stuff."

I imagine this is how we arrive at today, getting our books more and more visual to get buy-in for reading books. That's great... I guess... except here's the deal with me. I remember the plain old jumpy cloth books, and I wasn't the one shouting about adding visual-ness to books. I was the one standing in libraries moaning loudly, wishing writers would write quicker, to keep pumping out the stories, so that these publishers could get them just as quickly onto library shelves.

And now would you just looka here! Here comes the Indies giving us more books than we know what to properly do with. How's that for be careful what you wish for? Thankfully, on this wish I was pleasantly rewarded.

I don't care what the visually astute say, Indie books 'generally' contain that raw element, which makes for better pacing, not often found in books that have been washed clean of this jewel. And true too, books coming out of the big houses 'generally' contain the large stones everyone in the world is told beforehand will be in the book... except... well, I don't have to tell you what happens... sort of like a lot. Either way, whether browsing mainstream territory, or Indie, there's quite a bit of mining to do to get at the jewels.

And so now you know I'm not just saying this because I'm an Indie author, and publisher. For its sheer volume and great pacing, I (currently) give Indie books the edge. Not sure if I've blurbed my top Indie reading list yet, but even if I have, it's worth putting it back out there again.

Way to Go Indie Authors and Publishers!!!
(in no particular order... in fact, I listed more than 10!)

He Loves Me He Loves Me Not! by Tracy L. Darity
"A familiar 'feel good' romance tale."

"...will the 'be a good girl, don't get pregnant' life Khadejah Johnson has dreamed of have a happy ending?" ...The book is long, but if reading is truly your sport, it should be no problem taking to a corner of the sofa and sinking into this story. (Published by BookSurge Publishing)

So Not The Business by Natia Steans
"...a collection of stories weaved into one truly humorously yarn of friendship and family drama."

...The book is not long at all, but humorous as hell. Just loved the way the author drew out the bonds between these women. (Published by Xlibris)

"...an advanced degree of humor, and common courtesy, will be necessary to appreciate this one."

...This work has to be absolute proof why Indie authors are not only refreshing, but refreshingly honest. Enjoyable tale, muscularly funny, and I promise... if you're anything like me, you're going to find these characters a really big laugh out loud hoot and a holler. (Published by Infinity Publishing)

The Second Tour by Terry P Rizzuti
""What was it like in Vietnam -- How in the hell do you describe it? " —by borrowing Rootie's lenses."

...a philosophical glimpse into the innocence of men brought to their knees asking questions that No scripture, but only God Himself could answer...an unforgettable experience. (Published by Spinetinglers)

Hauling Checks: a novel by Alex Stone
"In the "Freight Dog" industry they live by the motto: "Any place, Any time, Any weather," ...religiously!"

...what else can I say but to be sure to get nut-strapped in for this hilariously misbehaving rollercoaster of sarcasm! (Published by CreateSpace)

A Country Called Nigeria by Robert Jr. Siller
"A community and business venture that delivers indomitable reminders long after the lesson."

...being unfamiliar with Nigerian culture, I found Siller's experience of trying to do business in Nigeria particularly engaging; and his storytelling impeccable. The story, honestly, will melt in your mouth it's that delicious. (Published by Xlibris Corporation)

Asleep by Wendy Raven McNair
"The way the author pampers her characters is the real treat here."

...and so who says everything must be loud and over the top, even if it is a young adult paranormal saga. Asleep was among the first few indie books I read. A pleasant surprise and inspiring treat. (Published by CreateSpace)

Musical Chairs by Jen Knox
"...if art could be written this memoir is how I imagine it would look. Jen has a way with words."

...Phrases like this kept happening over and over in this emotionally charged memoir. '...her applying make-up on a girl's face... "with a shaky hand... extending a business card... one she imagined the girl would take home, stain with tears of inadequacy, and then ball up in a fit of never-mind-rage."' (Published by All Things That Matter Press)

Painted Picture by Sheila Peele-Miller
"Truthfully? You know it's a great book when it inspires you to look more into reading a genre you typically don't read."

...All on my own I caught the way Sheila penciled in delicate strokes for the naivety... and broad ugly contours to do up the villains... and then applied the generous strokes to compare landscapes. Ideal natural writing. (Published by Adira Books)

C. Y. A.: Covert Youth Agency: The Case of Tangled Love by Jason Ancona
"...a very conscientious debut YA novel."

...anyone looking to take a break from the raciness of life and enjoy a clean, entertaining, decorous Pi novel for young people will fall head over heels in love with CYA. Reminded me of the movies Porky's and Grease... only squeaky cleaner and safer. (Published by CreateSpace)

The Gifted Ones by Lisa Vaughn
"There can't be one person who would not identify with what it feels like falling in love for the very first time; what makes this account (in its own right) uniquely appealing and a real page-turner."

...Lisa's falling in love with her best friend during a time when same gender intimate relationships weren't the social lure of conversation gives this memoir a superb take off when her parents find her diary! (Published by CreateSpace)

Hippie Boy: A Girl's Story by Ingrid Ricks
"...family cogently staples Ingrid's poignant memoir, albeit from varying perspectives."

Ingrid clearly and concisely clarifies the term hippie girl in her moving, very well paced memoir. And one more thing she does that's not seen a lot. She wrapped up a beautiful ending! (Published by RC Strategies Group)

Family Matters and More: Stories of My Life in Soviet Russia by Sol Tetelbaum
"...his stories will keep you on the edge of your seat... anticipating... and begging for just one more..."

...that's what really got me going in reading Family Matters. One story after the next, Sol kept them coming with either a lesson, a memory, or an anecdote chocked full of humor, and always with a twist...another gifted storyteller at heart. (Published by Publish America)

I can't wait to get back into reading. 
I currently have two nice big perfectly round stationary black eyes 
to prove how much I miss reading... OVER writing!

2 comments:

  1. Indie writers has comes a long way and I am glad that there are so may awards that are given to indie authors! I love being an indie author even though the work is hard but the reward is great.

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  2. Yes Melissa, there are many awards and rewards for turning out great work; one of the biggest being the feeling we get from creating work we love. Thanks for stopping by.

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