Do you read indie?


Well-Known Member
Aug 2, 2009
Do you read books by self published authors? If so, how do you know when to find good self published science fiction/fantasy story?
Some, but I have to admit I mostly read those written by people I know, which makes it very easy to find.

The other way I find it is ads on Amazon, freebies on r/Fantasy, sometimes people I follow on Twitter... SPFBO will give a lot of recs with reviews. I don't find much I like from there but it's about as good a way to find them as there is.
Probably about half of the SFF that I read is "Indie". I follow recommendations and like to read a chunk of a book before paying for it, so I like people at who allow me to read 20% free. Often at Smashwords one can read a complete first volume of a series free such as Lindsay Buroker's "Balanced on the Blade's Edge" Balanced on the Blade's Edge (Dragon Blood, Book 1), an Ebook by Lindsay Buroker. One can also simply search for highly rated books and find things like "The Steerswoman" by Rosemary Kirstein The Steerswoman, an Ebook by Rosemary Kirstein.

I don't know how to search for good books published by Draft2Digital and it gets harder if the writer doesn't like Amazon but I found Graydon Saunders' Commonweal Series Commonweal Series by Graydon Saunders via reviews and found that I could buy epubs from Google.

One can read some authors almost as they write at Royalroad and I am following one series about a Paranoid Mage Paranoid Mage | Royal Road. I also read some authors who at not aiming for commercial publication at sites such as spacebattles (here is a link to an alternate history story And They Shall Reap the Whirlwind (WW2 Insert)).

Amazon is the elephant in the room. I am happy to pay to read 10 books at a time via Kindle Unlimited but otherwise I do not like buying anything with DRM. I am currently following the Spiral Wars Series by Joel Shepherd. If one follows the look inside link to volume 8 "The Ceephay Queen", one can read a forward in which the author states "One of the wonderful things about turning to independent publishing (aside from making a nice wage -- something that traditional publishing never offered) is that I've gradually been able to collect the rights to my earlier books and assemble them all here on Kindle Direct Publishing, where they'll be available to readers at a much lower price than they were previously, including in the Kindle Library."

I suspect that other authors will be tempted but, whilst this may be OK for SFF, it really wouldn't be a good idea if one publisher could alter texts as they desired to state that "We have always been at war with Eurasia".
I’ve only read the Wool Trilogy by Hugh Howey. Enjoyable enough, but i felt a good Editor would have tightened the books somewhat. I’ve not been tempted by any other self published work.
Yes, quite a few. I come across them in automatic recommendations, people on Goodreads suggesting them or friends on Goodreads reading them also folks on here of course.
The following are of good quality, don't know if they are to your taste
Victoria Goddard
Kim Watts
Belinda White
T Kingfisher (she is hybrid)

It is also worth looking at smaller presses like Wizard's Tower. Not self-pub but not got the big advertising clout of large publishers.

Similar threads