A 'good' book to my mind, is one that grabs you from the get-go, takes you off to 'another world/time/place' and doesn't let you go - even when you've closed it - and sometimes not even once you've finished it.
My tastes in reading matter are eclectic and varied. I like all sorts of subjects, titles and authors. Bernard Cornwell is a firm favourite, as is Stephen King, not to mention some of James Herbert's and Dean Koontz's tales. Terry Pratchett of course will almost always get my vote, his Discworld is second to none.
Those storytellers are masters of their craft, geniuses at deflection from the every-day and magic-weaving of situations that could easily have been more ordinary. They are recognised the world over and rightly so. But what of the new breed of storytellers? Where are they coming from now?
You probably know there's a revolution happening in the world of publishing, a shake-up of things that have stood for decades - centuries - without being challenged to any degree of success. But here they come, not necessarily banner-waving or slogan chanting, demanding attention of readers, but they are edging their way into the minds and hearts of readers nevertheless and it has taken new technology to enable them to do it. The Indie Author is here and I believe they are here to stay.
The 'Big Six' have not relinquished control just yet and personally, I don't think I'd want to see the 'Trad-Pub' disappear, but there certainly is room for everyone in this market and the sooner they realise it, the better off the readers will be.
I would like to see a number of Indies band together and grab a chunk of the market share. I understand that it will take more than a few in order to grasp this particular nettle but it can be done, I'm sure of it. Maybe as many as a hundred or more, but once the balance is adjusted, the 'Big Six' could become the 'Big Seven' or even the 'Big Eight or Nine'. Then I can see a future where the Indies will have as much say in the market as ever the Trad Pub giants ever did.
There is only one thing that holds the Indie Author back and I know, I know, it's been said before: The Indie Author needs to take control of their quality as much as the rest of the market does. Until the independent author gets their act together and puts out a solid defence with edited, professional-looking books, there will still be no competition for the Trad Pub.
But, in light of recent success stories - the non-edited and horrendous writing of a certain Fan-Fic-turned-Trad-Pub series, it would seem that there is still room for talented, meticulous and savvy writers out there.
Go on, give an Indie Writer a go.
D Michelle Gent has three full novels and a series of six short stories out, she has been Editor for a global magazine and Producer of a number of Indie movies in the last few years.