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Saturday, October 15, 2016

Stop the Madness

post by Michelle Griep
Writers, traditional or indie, are on the same team.
It used to be that traditional publishing was king. If you weren't writing under a contract for a "real" publishing house, you were pond scum. No, less. You were the ugly underbelly of the pea-green floaty stuff that smells like rotten eggs. You, my friend, were a loser.

But then things changed. They always do. Self-publishing started a big push back, especially with the advent of CreateSpace and the ebook. Indies started to climb the ladder of publishing success, some even waving to the masses standing on the same rung as traditionally published authors. I know, right? Gasp! One would think that the rising tide of such innovation has lifted all writers to equal acceptance.

Hah. Not.

The vitriol has not ended. There is still a squabbling and poking-fun-at ruckus in the ranks of indie authors. Why? (click to tweet)  Because there's a spectrum of self-publishing.

You've got those who wrote their copy then handed it off to someone else to complete all the grunt work such as cover design, formatting, yada, yada.

Then there are those who wrote their copy, found their own designer and editor, then handed it off for things such as ISBN's, Library of Congress paperwork, and the like.

Or there are those who take the bull by the horns and do absolutely everything themselves. Everything. E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G.

It's within the ranks of this spectrum that pride has painted with the oozey liquid from the pond, ranging from:

"Oh, you didn't do it all yourself? Slacker!"
"Oh, you created your own cover? Yeah. I can tell. My preschooler could've done better."

So, I'm only going to say this once, people. Lean in. Listen hard. Read my lips . . .

Jump down off your pedestals. Let's be buddies, encouragers, looking for the good in each others journeys, not needling the bad. We are writers, and Lord knows that gig is hard enough without in-fighting.


Writers, traditional or indie, are on the same team.~Michelle Griep (Click to Tweet)

Let's be buddies, encouragers, looking for the good in each others journeys ~Michelle Griep (Click to Tweet)


Author Michelle Griep

Michelle Griep’s been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. Follow her adventures and find out about upcoming new releases at her blog, Writer Off the Leash, or stop by her website. You can also find her at the usual haunts of FacebookTwitter, or Pinterest.

Like what you read? There’s more. WRITER OFF THE LEASH: GROWING IN THE WRITING CRAFT is a kick in the pants for anyone who wants to write but is stymied by fear, doubt, or simply doesn’t know how to take their writing to the next level.


  1. I suspect that the label "indie" will soon vanish and we will simply be writers. I also suspect that the majority of writers from this point forward will take advantage of traditional and indie publishing. It only makes sense. Each will find his or her magic formula--say one trad published book for every three indy books--that will result in the most financial gain. Even well-known agents are recommending that dual path to their authors now. A good agent, as well as a good publisher, wants their authors to make a living of this thing. That keeps the author writing. Everyone wins.

  2. Love this, Michelle. Except that I think the equalizing force will be excellence, not attitude. Just as not all trad books are created equal, so not all indie-pubbed books are going to be equally well written, edited, or designed. The stigma against independent publishing will continue as long as the perception remains that all we have to do is throw money at some company to take what we have and toss it out there or that we can consider a work finished and ready long before it is and toss it out there to founder at will. If we're to go about independent publishing as professionals holding the reins, then we need to know how to handle those reins and to manage the team we harness for help.

    In the realm of peer appreciation, most in my writing tribes appreciate quality, no matter the publishing process. And if some snobbery remains among the traditionally published, that will fade as those going the indie route insist on producing products of equal quality. That's not to say we shouldn't always be kind. We should.

  3. Preach it sister! As long as you put out a good read, it doesn't matter how you get there. The key word being "good".

  4. Good article and a timely topic. Good writing is good writing. No matter how it gets out it should be appreciated. True, there is a barrage of junk being put out too but I've found a lot of really good story telling in Indie publishing. Writers have a tough enough time without the put downs and snubs. It is really hard to get traditionally published these days, harder than ever before because of things like economics and cut backs which have absolutely nothing to do with writing a good novel. There are more people out there writing or calling themselves authors than ever before too. So with all this against us, we don't need to act snobbish toward our peers. We need to support each other, help each other or just keep our mouths shut.


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