There’s this stigma that self-published work is not very good. That it’s a cop-out. Lazy.
Sure there may be some work out there that in the self-published world that isn’t the best it can be. That may be through lack of direction or editing from an outside observer, or that it simply hasn’t been formatted very well. It may not strictly be the writing. If you look at most of the negative reviews of self-published work on Amazon or Smashwords, they do tend to comment on the silly grammatical or spelling errors rather than the quality of the writing.
And the problem with leaving silly mistakes in the work, is that most avid readers (and writers like me) have this very annoying habit of seeing and noticing mistakes everywhere. And it bugs us. So it affects the writing.
A spelling mistake on an eulogy can effect the sentiment.
A spelling mistake on a specials board at a restaurant can effect how yummy the dish sounds.
And spelling mistakes, typos, grammar errors in a novel can effect its overall quality.
I’m not saying that traditionally published novels don’t suffer from the occasional typo – I’ve actually seen a fair few – but that may be one word in 120,000 – not bad odds.
But when a novel is littered throughout with typos and mistakes, is does affect the flow of the work, and the literary snob is us all gets put off by it.
My task that I’ve set myself next month, is to read and review purely self-published work. Whether that be in my genre, historical fiction, or in any other genre, non-fiction, or even poetry. And hopefully I’ll prove that there is some excellent work out there. There are some teams of pro-indie supporters with their own websites always busy promoting, reviewing and finding new indie/self-published writers to shout about, and I’m not trying to step on their toes. This project is for me to see whether this stigma against self-published work is valid.
So I’ll read and post reviews all next month (and maybe beyond)…