Thursday, April 15, 2010

To E or Not to E

Yesterday in the comments to my anti-motivation post, Kristen brought up an interesting question that's been on my mind ever since.  "Why haven't you tried epubs yet?"

"Hmm," I said to myself.  "Why haven't I?"

The first answer my brain came up with is: I haven't tried publishing through the e-market yet because I was holding onto the dream of seeing my books in hardcover - as unrealistic as that is in this economy - or at least in softcover.  I mean, I want to hold my books in my sweaty little hands.  I want to be able to flip through the pages and feel their breeze on my face. 

Then my brain tried the excuse that I haven't yet seen an e-pub who is looking for what I've written.  Umm, duh.  I tossed that lame excuse away.  I know how to look for stuff online, for petesakes. 

In the end, the only rational reason I have for not submitting to e-presses is that I'd feel like a raging hypocrite if I ever got e-published. 

You see, I don't read e-books.  Not that I have any problem with them as a general rule.  They're great for other people.  Me?  Not so much. 

The only time I read a book on my computer is when I'm writing it or when I'm reading for some other writer.  I don't have a problem reading for work on this puppy.  I do have a problem reading for pleasure here.  When I finish working, I want to head off to the comfortable couch, kick back and bury myself in a story.  I don't want to open a new window to read here at the desk.

Yes, if I got a e-reader, that would solve the problem.  I could take it over to the couch and read to my heart's content.  Hell, I might even stop the wrist pain that comes from holding a book too long.  Enter excuse #947... but they cost too much.  And Excuse #948... after the cost of the device, comes the cost of the books to read on it.  When you're pinching pennies so much Lincoln is whimpering, justifying an expenditure like that is problematic.  (Especially when my electronic needs are already not being met - as in my computer is ancient, and my digital camera is pathetic.)

Of course, I realize I'm cutting off my nose to spite my face.  If I could get published in some sort of E version, it could be a stepping stone to a print book.  But I know me.  I know that I couldn't sell something I'm not willing to use.  I'd feel like a shit pimping my e-book when I can't bring myself to buy one. 

What are your thoughts on the e-reading revolution?  Are you an e-reader or will you be one of the last hold-outs in the shift to electronic books? 


  1. A few years ago, I was saying everything you are right now. My advice to you? Get over yourself. (Said with love.) You're denying yourself a chance to be published and by denying yourself that chance, you miss out on the possibilities of what could come from building a career in ebooks. Like NY.

    Also? Most ebooks go to print at some point. My first will be out in print in July.

    Lastly, just because you don't read ebooks (I didn't either until I eventually bought a refurbished ereader) doesn't mean you couldn't promote your work. You're not promoting the method of delivery (which, by the way, many people ONLY read these days), you're promoting your story.

    Seriously. You're like you're own worst enemy, you know that? Think about all those finished books you have. How much money are they generating languishing on your computer? Hmmm?

  2. LOL, I should've known you'd come over here and kick my ass, Kristen. Thanks. I needed that. I'm totally jazzed to hear your book will be out in print this July! =o)

  3. B.E., don't rule out anything. Just because you don't read e-books right now, doesn't mean you won't sometime in the future.

  4. Ebooks really may be a great thing. Let us know what you decide and good luck!

  5. An interesting question. I've been avoiding ePubs, too, and for much the same reasons. Let us know how it goes!