The Angst of Acceptance, a recent post by Chris James at Indies unlimited taps into the discussion about who is worthy to sit at the literary table and pick over the spoils, he begins with a humorous story about a "Traditional" published writer being embarrassed to admit his status in the company of self-published authors.
A scenario that is pretty unlikely to happen today. The long road to acceptance for many self-published writers has been dogged by the stigma which has attached itself to the title for so many years but strip away the pretentious snobbery, and let's be honest isn't that where some of this comes from; didn't it all start with independent writers publishing their own works who gradually grew into the publishing companies of the past and then conglomerated into the bigger companies dominating the present day market?
I posted a comment at the foot of Chris's post and part of it reads
Indies have always been part of the literary scene, but regarded as the eccentric relatives which maintained their status as curios and their output as a trickle. Today the trickle is a flood and the criticism of the Indie almost always falls against a technical criteria – proofreading, editing, or whatever, elements the traditionally published writer hands over to someone else to do!
Nobody ever said we are bad at storytelling,
I am an Indie Author, I have never made any secret of the fact, nip across to the writing page at www.cheekyseagull.co.uk and there's a little note about my feelings on the matter. Chris has an excellent piece and links in the article itself and the comments provided by readers below expand on the discussion, including how a number of well established and respected literary groups are discussing their future relationships with the constantly growing self-publishing community and people firmly embedded in the "Traditional" publishing world are effectively being forced to shift their views on the new generation of self-publishing.
My comment touched on something that has niggled at me for a long time, the sub text that when it comes to checking the details of the finished work (proofreading, editing) somehow I can't do it! I wrote the book, and I can't spot my own mistakes? Paying someone to do the donkey work is fine, employing a professional is good, but being professional is not just about being paid. Being truly professional has nothing to do with being paid and everything to do with your state of mind.
Self-publishing is not the road of the damned and the desperate, not any more, and the names of established writers who are stepping out on to the road with the myriad of unknowns, hopefuls, dreamers and professionals are saying it loudly with each step they take along that road. People attack what they fear, they run down the things they feel threatened by, it's natural, but the writer, you, whoever you are out there, you are extraordinary. You have an independent mind, an independent spirit, enjoy them.
Whatever form of publishing route you take remember this, without the writer there would be nothing to publish. Our words, thoughts, ideas, the stories that catch the quintessence of humanity are served up for the reader to enjoy. We have a feast in our hands so bring what you have and share it.