Porter Anderson Wants Indie Authors to Sit Down And Shut Up
In a classic case of concern trolling, noted publishing industry pundit Porter Anderson calls on leading indie authors to stop being so noisy at recruiting new authors to their segment of the industry.
He posted a piece on Though Catalog on Tuesday which is a work of art. From the offensive straw man parable at the beginning to the "I’m just saying this as a friend" dodge in the conclusion, his article is a subtle argument that authors should get back to writing and leave the business of running the publishing industry to the professionals:
The issue, however, does have to do with a welcome, although still subtle shift in how self-publishers present what they’re doing, as independent publishing matures.
Maybe it’s time to stop stumping for selfpub, itself.
Maybe its time to just focus on the books.
I’m not going to quote any of his points, or debate him, because he is wrong both in how he presents his arguments and in the overall point he is trying to make.
So he doesn’t like the way indie authors are promoting their segment of the industry?
Fine. He doesn’t have to read their posts, listen to their podcasts, or attend their conference sessions. He has the option of simply tuning out the beating of the indie drum just like he ignores me (which happened a couple years ago, in fact).
The fact of the matter is, the drum beating isn’t intended for him: He’s not the audience to which the indie authors are speaking.
To use a political metaphor, the most vocal indie authors are trying to recruit new authors into their political party, and are using arguments which are tailored for that specific purpose. Anderson is in a different political party, which is why the arguments are having no effect.
To be perfectly honest, I too find the indie author stump speeches to be tedious. I’ve read so many that I would like Howey, Konrath, et al to move on to a new topic. But I’ve never said that, nor would I ever make that suggestion, because I know that the posts are part of a broader internal publishing industry recruitment drive – one which is not directed at me.
This post is approaching 400 words. That is more work than I had intended to invest in Anderson’s piece, so let me end with this one simple and obvious point.
If you don’t like what someone says, or the volume they use, you don’t have to listen and you don’t have to agree. But you don’t get to tell them to shut up, which is what Anderson did here.
That is simply wrong.
image by Cali4beach