Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Guest Post: A Hypocrite's Transition to Ebooks

Today, I have a guest post by Sarah Rexman.

My first job in high school was as a bookseller. I absolutely adored it. There’s nothing in the world like leafing through the pages of a brand new hardcover. I’m a bit of a purist regarding all of my interests, traditional books, film, and vinyl. Unfortunately, I am also a geek, so my love of nostalgia and need for technology often clash and I’m forced to compromise with e-readers, digital cinema, and mp3s.

Three years ago, I swore I’d never own an e-reader. I was terrified that they meant the end of my beloved pages, but when a good friend upgraded to a Fire and passed down his older Kindle, I have to admit, it got my geeky sense twitching and I learned that it is possible to enjoy digital books without betraying my beloved books.

Those titles that I read compulsively, I still want sitting on the shelf, and mass markets will always have a place in my beach and pool bags. Titles that would put me on a library waiting list, however, or something that I’m just going to donate after I finish reading can now be accessed more easily with my e-reader. It also won’t take up precious space in my apartment. There’s a hoarder lurking deep inside of me that I keep trying to suppress with minimalistic ideals. My Kindle has done wonders for this new attitude.

Just because things are digitally evolving, I don’t believe that my pretty bookshelves will soon be a thing of the past. Rather, like vinyl and VHS tapes, books will find their niche with collectors. The books that we really love will keep their homes on our shelves and the quick reads can be shuffled on and off the digital devices quickly and easily.

I hope digital readers will do for writers what digital cinema has done for indie filmmakers—make it easier for artists to get their work out there. Venues like the Kindle store have already opened a pathway for self-publishers to make a name for themselves.

As for the transition period, publishers would do well to offer digital copies with the purchase of a new traditional book, maybe if not for free, then for a few dollars more, kind of like how you get a digital copy when you buy a DVD/Blu-Ray combo pack with movies. This way, you have plenty of options for at home or on the go.

Sarah Rexman is the main researcher and writer for bedbugs.org. Her most recent accomplishment includes graduating from Florida State, with a degree in environmental science. Her current focus for the site involves researching pictures of bed bugs and nyc bed bugs.

1 comment:

  1. Plus, people will often read digital copies, and if they like it, buy printed editions for gifts and autographs. I find the two formats work well hand-in-hand. Great post. Thanks!