Author Topic: Indie Book Quality - Framing the Argument  (Read 8296 times)  

Offline EmilyG

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Re: Indie Book Quality - Framing the Argument
« Reply #75 on: January 31, 2014, 10:13:10 AM »
Recall the OPs basic question, which, I should add, is a reasonable one: How do you get rid of the poor-quality stigma associated with the indie/SP brand? The first part of the answer is that you cant fix the brand because you cant control what gets self-published or who flies the indie flag. The second part of the problem is that you cant control the brands representatives.

But I don't think the average consumer even knows they are reading indie books. They buy from an Amazon list or an also-bought or from a Bookbub email and never check to see who the publisher is. Even then the self-publisher can be obfuscated through a small pub house or custom imprint.

Now, if they read a poorly edited book and check out the publisher, it can reaffirm their bias -- "Of course it was bad, it was self-published" -- while not realizing many other good books they have read were indies.

I don't think "Indie Book" can be a brand. Just like "American Car" is not a brand. There are good ones and bad ones in both groups.

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Offline psychotick

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Re: Indie Book Quality - Framing the Argument
« Reply #76 on: January 31, 2014, 08:49:12 PM »

Thank you Emily. Your "American Car" encapsulated the problem perfectly. Yes there is no brand called American Car but still cars are bought and sold and more importantly valued on the basis of their country of origin - unfair as it is.

For example - and I'll mention country and not brand - if a friend of mine were to say he was considering buying an Italian car - with very limited high end exceptions I would be telling him not to. The reputation of a couple or three Italian car makers for poor build quality and unreliability not to mention depreciation of their products is simply that terrible.

If he were to say Swedish I would instantly be thinking boring but reliable. German equates to extremely well engineered, good build quality and highly reliable. Japanese is the same but generally lacking in style.

Now all of this means that if a new carmaker comes out of Germany he has a head start in terms of potential customer's expectations of his product. A new Italian carmaker (unless it's a super expensive top end sport car) begins life with a massive disadvantage. Which is why the best thing an Italian carmaker start up can do is try and make his car look and sound like it comes from somewhere else. Or else emphasise the sporty nature of the beast.

Or in our case, an indie can try and make is book look as trade published as possible. (Did someone here mention that they were even putting their own publisher marks on their books?)

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Offline Rykymus

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Re: Indie Book Quality - Framing the Argument
« Reply #77 on: January 31, 2014, 09:08:50 PM »
An intelligent buyer choose a product based on the merits of the product, not all similar products by makers ranging from known companies to unknown ones.

If a reader believes that quality books only come from traditional publishing companies, I would prefer not to have them as a customer.

I'd rather have readers who like my work for what it is, a self-published book, and not because I led them to believe that it was something more akin to a traditionally published book.

To me, it's as simple as that.