When you are involved in any industry whether it's mining, medicine of accounting you find there is language unique to that field. ( If you eavesdrop on three town planners it is my belief there will be so many acronyms used you may find yourself wondering if they're speaking another language). One you understand that field the language becomes common place and you forget that others don't know what you're talking about.
Since I've embarked on my journey to write and to get published I have learnt all sorts of terms and phases that are used in contexts I would not previously have understood.
What does it mean when someone 'requests a partial'? A publisher or agent wants to see part of your manuscript more than likely the first three chapters.
What is a 'beta reader'? (It is not a fish). It is someone, usually not a writer, who reads your book in it's draft stage and offers feedback.
What is a 'crit partner'? This is a person who critiques your writing and you critique theirs, so usually another writer.
So then we come to authors. Authors used to fall into two categories published and unpublished - simple right?
When I say I'm an indie author, people don't know what I'm talking about most of the time so I thought I'd take a moment to explain.
Now we add indie authors. I'm an indie author. What is that?
That's an author who is independently published...you know how musicians have indie records (which everyone things is mega cool and is pretty standard in that field) same thing really! I'm like that guy in the garage band. (Maybe I can become writing's answer to Silverchair!)
Lets' do another Q&A.
Are indie authors just people publishers won't publish? Sometimes they are. Sometimes they aren't. These days lots of traditionally authors also do some books as indies (hello Jackie Collins!)
Why would anyone be an indie author? Some people like control of their work - choosing covers, setting prices and controlling how they are marketed. For example I've enjoyed creating distinctive brand for myself and choosing how and when I would release my books.
Don't you make more money going through a publisher? Not always. These days with Amazon, Smashwords etc you can often do better on your own than with a small publisher, especially a publisher who is only offering you e-publication and not print. In fact you can make a pretty strong case lots of authors make less money with that approach. That's not to say authors with small publishers don't make money or big publishers because every author is unique and everyone's journey is different.
Do indie authors make money? Well authors generally don't make a fortune to begin with. In Australia the average authors makes around $10,000 a year from their writing regardless of the method of publication. Of course that's an average so lots are making more and plenty are making less. That's true for indie's as well.
In summary - an indie author is just someone going it alone in the writing world. Of course that's a pretty loose definition and not true really because I have a writing group, beta readers, cover designers, editors and of course readers and reviso I'm not alone at all. I'm just an indie.