|Amazon have scored huge successes with The Kindle|
And so with the first of our guests posts we hand the reins of the Archive over to western author, Matthew P Mayo:
Okay, I just sniffed a May, 1963 first Dell printing of Pay-Off in Blood: A New Mike Shayne Mystery. I'm ready....
Most folks will agree that e-books are here to stay. But any time new technology threatens to "revolutionize" an industry, the Internet and all manner of media outlets bubble with cheerleading about it, mostly because it's new and shiny. I like a bit of excitement as much as the next fella, but without balance, the ra-ra-ra-ing becomes annoying and of little practical use.
So, despite the fact that my own books are available as e-books, and it is a kick to see them in said new format, I do have a few reservations and concerns about e-books. Here's a quick list: piracy; the glut of poorly edited self-published titles; the fate of bookstores; the high price of e-reader devices; no single platform/format; the fact that by now, Kindles really should offer color; and the fact that I can't press a four-leaf clover between the pages of an e-book. I could go on and on about how e-books are not books, never will be, there's little purpose to that....
My guess is that most of my concerns will be addressed over the next few weeks/months/years as this new technology rolls forward. I truly enjoy how real books smell, feel, weigh, how they look on the shelf, how they have spines and back covers to read and admire, etc. Sadly, the tactile experience with an e-book isn't the same as with a real book. But the good news is that it is a different experience, no better or worse--just different.
E-books are another conveyance, a new way of getting information to readers. A pretty nifty one, to be sure, but different than traditional books. Will e-books one day have that soul an old paperback exudes? I don't know. But I do know that e-books will, by default, have a place in my life, along with book-books.
It's an exciting time to be involved in publishing--scary, too, especially if one is solely reliant on one's income as a writer, as I am--but whining and gnashing my teeth won't alter the direction it's headed. So I'm jumping in the pool and learning a few new strokes and kicks. So far, so good.
These are a few of my thoughts on the matter. Your mileage may vary.