Break out your sweatervest, it’s time to write!

While mainstream music is dominated by bubblegum pop, one-hit-wonder rock bands, formulaic country songs and the worn-out stereotypes of popular rap music, the culture of independent and underground music continues to innovate and create musical trends. Why can’t independent book publishing do the same? Independent films are at the top of every critic’s “top 10” list every year–when was the last time you saw an independently published book at the same place of honor? The Guardian has a thought-provoking article that raises more questions than it answers about indie books. The front page of the Statesman last week had an article about a local independent press that is putting out a new poetry book; we have at least one self-published author in our community–what is it about books, publishing and writing in general that does not celebrate the independent-minded? Why do readers not trust small presses or self-published writers the way listeners love to discover unsigned bands or critics revel in arthouse cinema?

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