Why Independence Matters

11 Apr

Before I go into my sphiel, me and a few other Burst Authors are in the middle of a Tour – Check it Out.

 

Final Attempt to Plea for the Aurora Awards – nominations shut down in a few days (April 12). And you might be thinking to yourself, “Well, what’s it matter, in the end?” Let’s put it this way – last year, they send out Efiles on all the nominees so people like myself could sample all the award winners and determine the winner. I know it seems very small and trivial a thing, but this is so very important. Now, what I’m not saying is “Vote for someone you think shouldn’t win”, I want people to win by their own merits. But, if you vote for someone small and relatively unknown, that puts their name across other people’s potential reading lists.

 

Why Indie Matters

I did start to write something long. Then I realized everything could be summed up in this old Simpsons Cartoon. Try to watch the whole thing if you can find it online.

To sum the episode up, Lisa reacts to her talking Malibu Stacey doll poorly – and when her concerns go dismissed, she teams up with the original doll’s creator and they create a ‘positive role model’ version. They get squashed when the creators of Malibu Stacey put out a new doll at the same time, though it’s on a bittersweet note, as at least one person bought the doll, and Lisa thinks that maybe the doll will make a difference.

I’m not going to go into sides as to whether Lisa was right or wrong. So long as they retain the quality, self-published authors, small presses, small authors, they all matter because it can challenge the norm, because they’re not necessarily looking at the bottom line as their motive for publication. Notice how The Hunger Games took off, and suddenly there’s a slew of Dystopia movies being made? Not just the YA trend, but Game of Thrones the HBO series is yet another game changer – around the time that series started, CBS showed their own medieval miniseries,  “The Pillars of the Earth” which I lovingly referred to as GoT without all that icky fantasy. It was followed up by a series I seem to love/hate, “Camelot” which casted Eva Green as who’s supposed to be the villain, but I’m getting off topic.

Anyway – when you go into most book stores, you’re looking at products. They’re designed to make money, which while I can’t fault them for, I can’t say really strives any great creative boundaries, either. A lot of books that historically bombed have ended up being our classics (The Lord of the Flies, for example) whereas I’m sure we can all sort of remember reading that popular series when we were kids (R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps, my gen)  I’ll bet only a handful of those stories resonate with you.

Small presses battle immense odds just to stay afloat – there’s an insane amount of money spent on advertising and on shelf-space to catch the eye of the consumer.  I’m not saying that no small press has ever put out a bad book, but there has to be a reason beyond money to do what they do. There’s easier ways, believe me – hashing out a living in the arts in general is hard, and people like plays and music, books take work. (I am referring to the public has to sit back and enjoy the play, whereas they have to use their imagination when reading).

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