I first heard the term “Indie Author” when I published my first book, A River Moves Forward in February 2013. Self-published authors, whom I had the privilege of connecting with via social media, referred to themselves as Indie Authors. The term “Indie Author” may be new in modern-day, but its meaning has been evolving for quite some time. For years, we called Independent Authors, “self-publishers.”
So where did this new term Indie Authors come from? It came from independent publishers (small publishing houses) that assisted many writers in getting their works published in smaller markets. You may wonder what difference does it makes to be called a “self-publisher” or an “Indie Author,” and the answer may vary depending on whom you talk to.
As a writer, I understand the power of words and the emotional effects they can have on a person. In the early 90’s, the term “self-publisher” had a negative connotation to it that painted a dismal representation of an author’s worthiness. Yet, many New York Times Bestsellers started off as self-publishers, authors such as E.L. James (50 Shades of Grey}, Omar Tyree (Fly Girl), and E. Lynn Harris (I Say a Little Prayer) just to name a few.
While the success of Indie Authors continues to be a roll-of-the dice, we’re more acknowledged now than we were years ago. Although labeling ourselves as “indie authors” has no bearing on the work we produce, the positive reception of readers has helped us gain momentum in the publishing industry. Whether an author succeeds in mainstream publishing or self-publishing, does not matter. At the end of the day, it’s about publishing good stories that people will enjoy.
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