Why do I keep talking about e-readers? Well first, I assume that as writers, you are interested in reading, and second, as a writer, I am fascinated by the myriad ways in which technology is changing the way in which we receive our written news and entertainment.
Yes, I’m constantly hearing from friends, clients, even strangers that “the reading experience is just not the same electronically. I want the feel of a book in my hands.” But the fact is, e-readers are not just a fad, they are the future. Everything changes and sometimes we just have to get used to it.
Now I’m not forecasting the immediate demise of the paper book, I do think, however, that as both readers and writers, we can no longer ignore this new way of buying and reading books.
Two things that have held many people back from trying out e-readers is cost and format. There are currently over a dozen different models of e-readers available, most starting at over $200. That’s a lot of money to put into something you aren’t sure that you’ll like, particularly when the formats are often incompatible. Remember the Eight-Track?
However, there is a less expensive way to try out e-reading. Barnes and Noble offers its own version of e-reader software as a free (yes, that’s right, FREE) download to your I-phone, Blackberry, Mac or PC. It downloads in a few minutes and comes with a couple of sample books (Sense and Sensibility and The Last of the Mohicans were on my version) so you can see if you really enjoy reading this way before you every buy the first book.
Once you’ve installed your reader, just go to the Barnes and Noble website, order the book you want, and it will download almost instantly onto your computer. Yes, it is actually faster than going to a bookstore.
Once again, let me say that I have no special love for giant bookstore websites, and I have not forsaken the joys of a paperback, but as writers, we can’t ignore this technology.