As a follow-up to last week’s post about Jonathan Franzen and his comments on the “little videos” that authors sometimes publish, I here offer some of my own thoughts about literary fiction and the likelihood that it will survive the indie revolution. Do you have any thoughts on the likelihood that literary fiction will successfully transition to indie publishing?
Last Friday, I posted a roundup post with four writing, publishing and editing experts. I asked what they thought was the likelihood that literary fiction would successfully translate to the world of independent fiction. The post got a decent amount of retweets, which for a newer blogger like myself was pretty exciting. Of course, when you’re showcasing the founder of the Alliance of Independent Authors (Orna Ross) and a top crusader against vanity presses that like to manipulate authors with misleading marketing shpiels (David Gaughran), you’re bound to get some interest, no matter who you are.
Nevertheless, that post had some ripple effects and I grew involved in some follow-up Twitter exchanges with people who liked and retweeted links to the post. Since I’d clearly struck a nerve, I reached out in an act of market research to get their thoughts on literary fiction. Some flat-out said they think the genre, if you can call it that, is full of pretension. No new news there, as the saying goes.
I recently asked four experts for their opinions about publishing trends in literary fiction. More specifically, I queried: Will today’s community of literary writers and readers always remain part of the establishment of traditional publishing houses, or will it eventually evolve to be represented by indie fiction? Why or why not?
Thanks to Orna Ross, David Gaughran, Anne R. Allen and Sangeeta Mehta for their contributions, which are included below in alphabetical order by surname.
Back at Fordham University, where I earned my MA English in 1998, one writer most graduate students had an opinion about was Stephen King. I mean, EVERYONE has an opinion about Stephen King. But anyone who has decided to dedicate their professional lives to reading and critical analysis–that is, the professors-in-training who pass through English graduate programs–deserve to be heard out. Should Stephen King be part of the literary canon–yes or no?