I had an idea for a blog the other day. I don’t have time to do it myself, but if anyone wants it, please do take, as I’d like for a thing like this to exist.
So… I was thinking about self pubbed novels the other day, and chatting to a blogger about it – @LizUK on twitter, whose blog is here. She was saying that she doesn’t review indie authors – there’s hardly enough time to review all the traditionally published authors, never mind starting on indies. Fair enough – George RR Martin isn’t our bitch and book bloggers aren’t either. Even less so because people pay George RR Martin.
First off, I should probably check… is there a blog out there that focusses entirely on indie authors? I’d be curious to see how they go about it. How do you deal with authors taking it personally, for example? When there’s no wall of publisher and PR people between you and the author? Not that trad pubbed authors don’t make a stink sometimes when they don’t like a review, but at least there is some distance there by merit of the relationships involved.
If no one’s done a blog like this yet (or no one’s done a good one), if there’s anyone out there that’s interested in doing a “Gatekeeper” blog, one thing I thought of (with Liz’s help prodding me and teaching me more about the book blogging experience) was that it might be easiest to do it by only writing reviews of indie books you’ve enjoyed – ie those are the only ones you let through the gate. You are the filter for the rest of us lot who are all at sea when it comes to choosing indie books. (Not saying everyone is – but I don’t trust Amazon reviews on the whole, and I’m rather lazy when it comes to looking for new books that I haven’t been recommended by someone…I want someone to do the hard legwork for me….). This is what I want as a reader:
I want a gatekeeper. It’s what I expect (though am sometimes disappointed) from publishers and the established reviewing community of broadsheets, lit mags and book bloggers.
Can anyone point me to a blog like that? Or would anyone like to start one? And… what other mechanisms can you and do you use to filter which indie authors to read? I’d be interested to hear from indie authors too – how do you go about getting your books read and reviewed? How can you help stumbling eejits like me who don’t know where to start?