Jul 9, 2008

Where are all the 'Indie' novels?

A Guardian blogger asks: why, if we value independent cinema, and indie music, do we not value independent writers?
Can you imagine any serious film reviewer refusing to watch anything other than the major Hollywood blockbusters? Can you imagine New Musical Express (in its heyday, at least), only focusing on artists and records from the big corporate music labels, and ignoring the independent record company explosion of the late 70s?.... Who are the big indie writers, those who refuse to compromise by not allowing The Man to dictate what and how they should write, and earn massive respect because of it?"
Independent from what, though? Publishers? Editors? I guess there is a fair point in there chastising people for being too busy chasing the next Harry Potter to bother with finding the next J G Ballard. But surely the publishing industry already echoes the pop/indie split. If by 'indie,' he mean 'read by few people, hostile to outsiders and snooty about the mass market', we already have an indie book scene. Its called the literary novel. I don't think those guys need any more encouragement to seek out smaller audiences.

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