Yesterday, I wrote about self-published books and quality, and I lamented that it is very difficult for the ordinary reader to find the quality reads in the gigantic pool of self-published books. Most self-published authors, especially authors who haven’t established an audience, generally don’t have access to the various means of book discovery that traditionally published authors do. They usually aren’t in bookstores or libraries where readers may browse; they aren’t reviewed by major book review outlets; they don’t have well-known awards.
To be truthful, readers don’t want to work that hard to find books. We just want to get on with the reading. So authors, don’t make us work!
I think the key is author collaboration: authors working together to come up with creative ways of making their books more discoverable, and of reassuring readers that these are books worth their time (not to mention their money).
Author Samantha Bryant turned me on to this website: Peer Reviewed. This is along the lines of the collaborative efforts I was thinking of: authors reviewing one another’s work. Books chosen for review are books that the author can honestly recommend. More well-established authors, who have already built a reputation for quality, can lend that reputation to deserving newer writers.
I would love to see other experiments along these lines. As a reader who is passionate about good writing, I am fascinated by how all this is developing.
Hat/tip Samantha Bryant