Indie vs. Traditional: Who Cares?By Scott NicholsonAfter spending much of the last two years studying all the changes in publishing and books, I pretty much grew bored with the whole “indie vs. traditional” discussions.People who are locked into an opinion aren’t going to change their minds based on anything I contribute, and people who are open to changing their minds are better off watching and acting rather than debating it. In other words, my conclusions are fully represented in my actions.What I was mostly seeing could be described like this:Publishers: “Ebooks are a fad, so let’s kill them with high prices, plus people will always want gatekeepers to protect them from bad books.”Agents: “Writers still need people to guide them and take care of them and expand their opportunities.”Traditional Writers: “Only hacks self-publish. And we are special, because we were accepted. And you weren’t. But we are not gloating. Much.”Indie Writers: “Publishers are stupid. Plus they rejected us. And we are making more money than traditional writers. But we are not gloating. Much.”Readers: “I don’t care. I just want a good book at a low price.”Guess who is winning, and will always win?In other words, I self-published the heck out of my books last year. Even though I had a couple of traditional print books out, I saw my biggest writing goal fulfilled as an indie: I became a fulltime fiction writer. All thanks solely to readers, not to publishers, agents, other writers, or even necessarily my own talents and work.And I could have said, “This is working! I’ve made it,” but I did the natural thing and established new goals, because I don’t expect the future to be like the past or present. Indie is great right now but it might not always be great. Conditions, royalty structures, devices, and markets may change, and consumer habits may change. So I signed a publishing deal with Amazon and I agreed to three other deals with publishers while still maintaining my indie foundation.This September, I am giving away 15 percent of my ebook revenues to my readers, the people who have made my dream come true. It’s the same percentage an agent would have gotten, if the agent had made the sales. Now readers make the sales. They deserve the money just as much, I would say.In the future, the only thing I believe will hold is that readers will continue to gain power and be the entire reason I tell stories.See, I’ve made up my mind, but I’m still changing my mind!
QUICK NOTE...Update: 2/19/19
Still working through things. We were right in the path of Hurricane Michael (like so many others), and while the family is safe (pups, and parents), the house didn't fair as well. Baby steps back into the blogging world and started to grow, so you know, a post here, a post there, and away we go! Hope you stay along for the ride!