A debate has been raging at Writer’s Bone HQ for most of the day. Before you read about Matt tearing Dave a new one, check out his original post, as well as Dave’s original response and his rebuttal, and today’s installment of The Boneyard.
Throughout the history of mankind, there has been an evolution in the world of writing and reading. In ancient Egypt, people used hieroglyphs. When people decided that it took absolutely forever to draw those intricate shapes and caricatures on the walls, they started writing things down on papyrus. Then, the printing press was born, and so on and so forth.
As time and technology moves forward, so does the way of the written word. But why? For simplicity’s sake. If not, we would all still be chiseling shit on walls and driving television producers for HGTV nuts (Can you imagine “Love It or List It?” viewers fighting among themselves as to which interior design was better based on the stories written on the walls?).
Does simple mean the best method to do something? Absolutely not. Look at Twitter. Twitter is a news editor’s dream come true. But when used mainly for personal use (Basically anyone under the age of 18 or a celebrity), it’s the most obnoxious form of media available. It’s mainly 140 characters that no one will ever, ever need in their lifetimes.
E-books make reading more readily available for those who want it, simply. Gone are the days of waiting three to five business days because the book that you were trying to buy at Borders (RIP) is sold out or no longer in stock. A click of the button allows you to have that book almost immediately, without any hassle.
Amazon saw an opportunity to adapt to a changing medium with a proper business model that would ultimately lead to success. Nowhere does Amazon dictate how much a writer should be paid based on their writing. If anything, getting rid of production costs and focusing your book to be online only can only help your profit margin, don’t you think? Besides, the difference between paid content and free content is a completely different animal. It’s like comparing lions and caterpillars. Or, some other weird set of animals that have nothing else in common.
And the idea that reading a paperback book at a library or book store makes you a better person is wrong in more ways than not. Reading a paperback book isn’t going to make you talk to the cute girl that sits next to you on the bus. If anything, you’re going to be ignored no matter what you’re holding because she’s a bit busy looking on her iPhone anyways.
Some books need to be in print. The classics clearly cannot be fully enjoyed on a tablet, and that’s not even negotiable. But to think that there is no place for e-readers at all because they make us seem like a self-absorbed douche is asinine.
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