What works for me:
- Price point. Indies are often cheaper than commercial books. Some of the more clever indie authors also lead with a permafree, giving me a chance to get hooked on their series with no financial outlay.
- Daring-ness. I've found indie books who have taken chances with their characters or plots in ways that would make a commercial publisher cringe. I'll read whack-a-doodle, if it's constructed with skill.
- Release schedule. Back in the Old Days, I had to wait a year for the next book to come out. (I'm looking at you, Wheel of Time!) But indies release on a quicker schedule. I can get two books a year, or even four books a year in a series. This quicker release schedule means I can get my fix faster. Also, if you're one of those annoying people who will only read a series if the whole thing is out, indies will release the whole series, regardless of how bad sales are. Commercial publishers have a reputation about not releasing the whole series because sales were poor for the first two books.
If you are interested in a series put out by a commercial publisher, please buy the first book, even if you don't read it at the moment. If sales aren't good, the rest of the series might not ever be released, and you and the rest of the world will miss out.
What doesn't work for me:
- Quality control. This is left entirely up to the author. Some treat the indie publishing process with a level of professionalism. Others don't, and it shows.
- bad editing
- bad layout
- bad cover art
- bad plot/characters
- Availability. I read .epub on a Kobo. Sometimes I come across an author who is only on Amazon and their books are on Kindle DRMmed. (secret: without DRM, I can convert a book I purchased on Amazon to .epub and read it on my Kobo. I have a hard time reading Kindles on my laptop, and have bypassed exclusive Amazon books with DRM.)
I guess 'availability' could extend to ebook vs hardcopy. I know some of my (potential) fans have asked if my TWRP books are also available in hardcopy. Alas, they're not, but that's a decision of the publisher, and one I understand from the back end. Fret not, Her Endearing Young Charms (out 20 May 2016) will also be out in paperback as well as ebook.
Question: What do you love/hate about indie books?
Her Grace is going hybrid, but still enjoys the teamwork of commercial publishing. Some day she'll make an agent very happy.