The publishers appear to be taking a stand in terms of e-books. If you take a quick glance at the top 100 books on the Amazon Kindle listings, you will see that the major publishing houses now dominate the list. What is amazing is that in most cases, the Kindle price is higher than the paperback price and in more than a few instances, higher than the hardcover price.
As a reader, and an owner of a Kindle, I have a hard time justifying the price asked for a digital copy of a new release that is in the 15 - 20 dollar range. Some are well over $20.00. I don't think Amazon minds the prices since they get paid a percentage of the list and the higher the better for them. What does this mean for the early stage author who is publishing independently and doesn't have the marketing support of the big guys? It means the same thing it has always meant, build your own list of followers, connect and communicate with them in a timely and authentic fashion. Build your list one reader at a time - the same way you sell your books.
To be an author, you also need to be a marketer. If you are looking for advice in that area, I strongly suggest that you subscribe to Seth Godin's blog - no question that he is the preeminent marketer in this digital age. I suspect, but don't actually know, that there may be more platforms on the horizon for indie authors, so that they can get noticed by readers who appreciate us. I kind of like John Locke's philosophy for selling his pot boiler novels for .99 as he says that he offers the readers good entertainment and that the "big guys" have to justify why the reader should spend 15 to 20 times more for similar entertainment.
I realize that "name recognition" sells and it always has, but good writing, combined with a marketing plan that suits your needs, persistence, and most important of all, more books, you can get there. Keep writing, keep talking, keep posting, keep the faith baby!