Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The guilty pleasure of reading

Reading is held in high regard. It is my favorite pass time but it does come with a cost.

Reading is a solitary activity. It does not lend itself to conversation unless the parties talking have each read the same book. When I read I'm usually locked away in a room, by myself, not talking to any one.

That's part of the cost. As much as I love it, it is a bit of a selfish act. So it's hard to find the time to read guilt free.

Then there's the reading itself; what do you read? Classics, literary fiction, genre fiction, magazines, newspapers, etc.?  I love fiction above all other types of reading. But I sometimes come away feeling like I might have spent my time better by reading something more important.

I've decided that I read for my own pleasure and knowledge. I'll follow my heart as to what I read.

There is so much joy to be found in books that I can't help but be drawn to book shops of any description. Used bookstores are the best of all. There you'll find treasures long out if print at discounted prices.

One day eBooks will open the entire back list of the written word at an affordable price but right now the book readers are ahead of their time.

Content is still very expensive. I was looking for a Dirk Pitt adventure that is over 30 years old and was stunned to see it for sale as an eBook for over $10.00!! How can this be? Surely vendors know that you can get the same book for less than $2.00 in a used book store. Or Zero if you download a pirated copy.

You can wipe out most of the piracy in media by simply charging a realistic price for the product. $10 for electrons? No way. $2.99? Much better. Saves me the trip to the used bookstore. $0.99? I'm not even going to look anywhere else; I'll just download a copy.

If publishers embraced eBooks as simply another type of book they'd be able profit from it.  It used to be that the hard cover came out first then, a year later, the paperback.  Why not wait another six months to a year and then release the eBook?  And while your at it offer the entire back list of an author in eBook as well.  Some people, like myself, are completists and want to read books from the beginning.  Surely there is money to be made from that.

iTunes has sold billions (that's with a B) of songs at $0.99. Books would sell just as quickly at a reasonable price.


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