You know that open letter I mentioned Douglas Preston circulating? Self-published author Hugh Howey has just launched one of his own, as a Change.org petition from self-publishing writers, thanking readers for their support, explaining self-published authors’ side of the Amazon/Hachette feud, and asking them not to boycott Amazon. It’s a remarkably clever idea, and already has over 500 signatures.
The letter, and signatures below it, are replete with endorsements from authors explaining that Amazon has made it possible for them to earn a living, or (in my case), expect to earn a living at some point, from self-publishing their work. It also lays out in clear and easy-to-understand terms the problems traditional publishing has with Amazon and why readers’ interests don’t align with them.
While I tend to consider most Change.org petitions to be ineffective slacktivism that people sign in lieu of getting out and doing something real, in this case the entire point of the petition is not to demand an action from some third party, but rather to spread virally and be read by as many people as possible. I can definitely get behind that.
(Be advised that signing a Change.org petition means they will then email you with other petitions they think you’ll want to hear about. You can probably turn this off in the settings somehow; I haven’t bothered to look.)