I’m broadening our topic today. Maybe even going off on a tangent. But, readers are essential for writers, so I hope everyone makes an allowance for me. J
I’ve been reading since I was three or four years old. I remember trips to the library with my mom, where we’d come home with a stack of books almost taller than I was, only to return the following week for new ones. I remember browsing the aisles of bookstores with friends or my husband, spending hours trying to decide what books to buy and being tempted by them all. I remember conversations around the dinner table during holidays, discussing the latest books my uncles wrote, analyzing the meanings behind the words and discussing which relatives received the honor of a dedication. In other words, books have always been an important part of my life.
For me, books were always paper. Their weight gave importance to the words within; the smell of the ink and the paper added to the excitement; the ability to read ahead, or to refrain from doing so, adding suspense. And then I got published and jumped into the world of the e-reader.
I was skeptical at first. Is an e-book a “real” book? My kids started talking about friends who had e-readers and how suddenly non-readers (they exist???) were enjoying the pleasures of reading. I viewed my book on my iPad and it looked real enough. Actually, it was pretty exciting. The cover filled the screen, the pages looked like “real” pages and were easy to navigate. I couldn’t necessarily skim through sections to read ahead, but that’s kind of something I should avoid doing anyway (kind of like reading the last page of a mystery). And although I also had my book in hard copy, I had a lot of friends who were eager to order it as an e-book.
Then I started playing around with my Nook app, and I fell in love. Most Nook books were cheaper than hard copies. There were free samples to try. I’m more willing to take chances on new authors because it’s less of an investment. If you have the real Nook, like my daughter does, you can go to Barnes & Noble and try books for free for 30 minutes. If you have a Kindle, you can borrow books from our local library. I’ve developed a library on my Nook app of a certain type of book that I like. They’re all in one place, and I can go back and reread them easily, without having to scan shelves in my basement to try to figure out exactly which book I’m thinking of.
Do I still like paper books. Yes. I’m not picky—I like ALL books. I still borrow hard copies from the library, still go to the bookstore and buy paper books. But having the Nook app gives me another opportunity to read books that I might have hesitated to buy before. And anything that encourages reading is a great thing!