Another Benefit of Reading Local:

Author Interviews, Connections, and Insights

By Liz Merton

While not a feature limited to authors publishing with independent presses, of course, one thing we love about authors who publish with independent and smaller presses is their accessibility, and the insight into their work their audiences may be able to get through reading author interviews, following these authors on social media, listening to podcasts, and the like. Again, we aren’t saying that this kind of access is unique to authors publishing with independent presses, but given factors like the increased need for author participation in the marketing of independent-press books, access to these authors may be greater.


Simply, authors publishing with independent presses often interact, often reach out and chat, get involved with their readers, put themselves “into the mix.”


In reading Everything Begins & Ends at the Kentucky Club by Benjamin Alire Sáenz, I enjoyed “hearing” from Saenz here in a piece from TexasMonthly. Sage follows the book’s publisher Cinco Puntos Press on Twitter, getting updates on their projects in “real time.” Writers like Barlow Adams offer entertainment, insight, and interaction on social media.


Our own Sage loves going a little deeper into her stories by sharing behind-the-scenes glimpses in interviews, as she does with CMash Reads here and with International Thriller Writers' The Big Thrill Magazine here.


Red enjoys keeping track of authors like Bernice Ende (who shares her inspiring long rides on horseback in authentic, intimate ways online) and Elena Taylor (aka Hartwell) (with her lively engagement on social media and reviews of thrillers).


Simply, independent-press authors often open themselves up and get cozy with readers in unique ways. Readers can participate, if you will, in their favorite stories by following these authors on social media, through blogs, and on interactive book sites: getting sneak peeks, and diving a little deeper into the plots, characters, and settings these readers love. And as Sage emphasizes, the benefits of this interaction run both ways. Sage loves hearing from readers. She loves interacting and sharing. (FYI, you can find her on Twitter.) So if you’re looking to connect with the creator of a character you adore, try finding them in the online ether!

Read Local, L.L.C., is a small (we hope to grow!) community of book lovers. We review books published by independent/university/small presses and post our reviews and thoughts in an effort to raise awareness of independent-press books. The Read Local, L.L.C., entity is owned by the parent company of Stoneman House Press, L.L.C., and that publisher's work appears on this website (we make money when Stoneman House sells books), but not everyone who writes content for us or participates in our community works for Stoneman House. Aside from Stoneman House, we also have relationships (personal and/or professional) with some of the authors whose books appear here. Some (like Sage Webb) write reviews for us and help lead us (and they make money when their books sell). We note when we have a relationship with a book, publisher, or author. Otherwise, we do not have relationships with the authors and publishers listed here. They appear here only because we liked their books and we like reviewing books. (We will be as transparent as possible when we post here about things in which we have a financial stake. Not just because of regulations like those in Part 255 of Title 16 of the Code of Federal Regulations, but because we really are here just to have some literary fun.) If you are an author or publisher of a book that appears here, feel free to reach out to us! We'd love to hear from you. We are at And if you are an author or publisher and you would like us to remove your book from our site, just let us know. We are here to serve the literary community. If you have questions, reach out.

(We also love innovative art and photography. Just sayin'.)

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