So You Want to Buy Indie
Indie is in! Everything from Indie book stores, to boutiques, to music. It only makes sense that as authors are taking the time to professionally edit their novels and get top-notch covers, the Indie novel movement is catching on too. And let's face it, when Indie novels are just as enticing, at a fraction of the cost as a traditionally published novel, what's not to love?
But you may feel daunted by the task of finding the Indie novels that fit your tastes. After all, you don't want to read someone's first draft that they slapped a pretty cover on. And there are SO MANY novels out there. How do you pick without getting overrun?
Here are just a few of the ways that I find Indie reads:
Keep your eyes peeled for sales or free copies. Sign up for newsletters from these companies or like them on Facebook or Twitter. (I'm sure there are new ones cropping up daily, but these are just a few that are on my radar.)
Kindle Nation Daily - http://kindlenationdaily.com/
Pikel of Ink - http://www.pixelofink.com/
RG2E -- http://thereadersguidetoepublishing.wordpress.com/
Kindle Fire Department - https://www.facebook.com/kindlefireapps?sk=wall
Read excerpts. You'll know pretty quickly whether you like a book or not once you start reading it. Why pay for the book before you know? Of course, there are look inside options on Amazon, but you can get up to 20% of many books for free before you buy. Check out Smashwords (just to use Destined as an example, you can get the first 20% here http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/105138) and Wattpad to see what samples are available in your favorite genre.
Get recommendations from others. Follow blogs that recommend Indie authors, try a Google search or Goodreads list (for example - did you know there's a list dedicated to self-published YA novels - http://www.goodreads.com/list/show/6674.Self_Published_Young_Adult_Books), or even check the recommendations from Amazon based on books you know you already like. Most of the time, you'll get a range of honest opinions that will give you a hint about whether the book will be something you like.
Anthologies - Indie authors sometimes team up to produce free or low-cost anthologies. You'll get a collection of great short stories and learn whether or not you like the writing style and voice of a particular author. In the YA genre, some examples include: IN HIS EYES and LOVE, ME.
Those are my general tips and tricks. I hope you'll take a little time to find some excellent, low-cost Indie reads. After all, it's easy to fall for the big-house-backed covers and the media blitz of traditionally published novels, but you just might find your new favorite story is written by an author courageous enough to strike out on her own.
Jessie Harrell is the Indie author of DESTINED, a young adult retelling of the Eros & Psyche myth. Her short story, Before, is also part of the IN HIS EYES Anthology. Look for her next novel, co-written with Brooklyn Grant, BENEATH THE SURFACE, coming this summer. You can find Jessie and Destined at these places:
Book Depository: http://www.bookdepository.com/Destined-Jessie-Harrell/9780615500959/?a_aid=SpadesHighReads
Thank you Jessie for the awesome advice and for doing my post today! Please feel free to come back anytime!