Indie author, IndieReader, indie lit—a new buzzword has clearly come into vogue in the book world. But what is “indie publishing,” anyway? For many, the term is synonymous with (and maybe less stigmatized than) “self-publishing”—an author’s do-it-yourself production of a work at his or her own expense. But for others, “indie publishing” stands in contrast to “traditional” publishing, often called “trad” or “legacy” publishing by doubters.
Ah, how dangerous is a little myopia. At a recent conference in Boston, Gay Talese, journalist icon and keynote speaker, named four male writers who inspired him as a young man (Frank O’Hara, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Irwin Shaw). In the Q & A, poet Verandah Porche asked him if there were any women writers who played the same role in his literary life.
I usually use this section of the Web site for guest posts by teachers, but I’m doing a little cheat here. Nick Ripatrazone recently wrote an essay called “55 Thoughts for English Teachers,” for The Millions, an online magazine offering coverage on books, arts, and culture since 2003. (The New York Times called it an “indispensable literary site.”)
Ripatrazone has written six books of fiction and poetry. Despite his delicious Italian name, he teaches English, and has for 10 years. In the essay he shares his inspiring reflections on the profession.