WEbook, a self-publishing service, has a fun app, 911 Writers Block, for those who are stuck, whether it’s with a character, a scene, or a verb. If anything, it’s a nice tool to waste time instead of writing… and who knows, maybe it will trigger some masterpiece.
This is a 2008 article from Epublishers Weekly about ebooks, but it does talk about some good reasons to read ebooks, one of my favourites being that it’s good for the environment.
There also a great Feb. 2009 article by John Siracuse in ars technica about “The once and future ebooks.”Â Siracuse starts by saying:
“people don’t get e-books.” This is as true today as it was ten years ago. Venture capitalists didn’t get it then, nor did the series of owners that killed Peanut Press, nor do many of the players in the e-book market today. And then there are the consumers, their own notions about e-books left to solidify in the absence of any clear vision from the industry. […] Here’s an awesome, obvious, inevitable idea, seemingly thwarted at every turn by widespread consumer misunderstanding and an endemic lack of will among the big players. Continue reading
You’re going on a two-week holiday near the lake. You’re flying to Watertown for a three day business trip. You’re going to the park with the kids for the entire afternoon and are loaded down with their stuff. You’ll go out of your mind if you don’t have books, but you don’t have the room or they’re too heavy to carry.
No need to fret. All you have to do is buy ebooks and download them in you handy-dandy ebook reader. An ebook reader, as a rule, can contain hundreds of books, and they weigh only a fraction of a paperback.
Nowadays you can read ebooks on a variety of multi-purpose devices like the iPhone, the Mobile Pocket PC, Treo, or Smartphone. The sharpness of the image compensates adequately for the size of the screen. (BTW, all of Zumaya Publications books can be read on these devices).
There are also dedicated readers, such as the Sony Reader or the Kindle (http://www.ebookweek.com/ebook_gallery.html#8). Most of these readers use electronic ink, or e-ink, which basically uses very small charged particles sandwiched between two films. A current passing through changes them from white, black or grey, providing an image as sharp as high-end printed paper. Once charged, they don’t require power until you â€œturn the page,â€ so battery life is extended considerably. These readers are relatively expensive at the outset, but if you’re an avid reader, you’ll eventually save since eBooks are a lot cheaper than print books-and they take considerably less space on your shelf!
As I mentioned above, the two best known readers are the Sony Reader and the Kindle. The latter was lauded by Oprah, which resulted in a phenomenal amount of sales: the original Kindle sold well over a million units (it was sold out in the first week). They are now selling an estimated 48,000 units a month. Between 2006 and 2008, Sony reported it sold over 300,000 readers.
Clearly, eBook readers are no passing fad. While they’re not for everyone or every wallet, they serve a useful function for those who lack space, who travel, who read everywhere. And while eBooks may never replace print, they’re definitely here to stay.
Every year for the past five years, around the beginning of March, eBooks are celebrated and promoted through Read an eBook Week. This year it is from March 8th to 14th. But what is it about?
Read an eBook week was first registered with Chase’s Calendar of events in 2004. â€œRead an EBook Week is a not-for-profit week set aside to inform the public about the pleasures and advantages of reading electronically. Authors, publishers, vendors, the media and readers world-wide [â€¦] join in the effort.â€ (http://ebookweek.com). During that week, publishers and authors offer specials (such as free eBooks) to entice the readers to try them. If you’ve never tried an eBook and have been intrigued by them, be sure to check the Read an eBook Week partners’ page (http://ebookweek.com/partners.html) for some good deals.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
How “Green” is Your Reading Material?
“Carbon Footprint”, “Environmentally Friendly” and “Green”. Have you considered these words when it comes to your reading material?
We’re encouraged to buy, use and dispose with the environment in mind. While it’s easy to recognize the negative impact of excess packaging and chemical content in many of the products we purchase, it’s not so easy when it comes to books, magazines and newspapers.
We do have alternatives other than paper for our reading material. Many books, newspapers and magazines are created electronically. No trees are cut to produce them. No ink is used to put the words on the page. No fossil fuel is used to run presses or trucks to move them around the country. Heated storage facilities are not required to warehouse e-books until they are shipped to bookstores.
March 2nd-8th, 2008 is Read An E-Book Week.
It takes 24 trees to produce a ton of printing paper, the type normally used for books, 12 trees are harvested for a ton of newsprint. Up to 35% of books printed for consumers (down from nearly 60% several years ago) are never read. They are used for window dressing in book stores, and eventually returned to the publisher for disposal in landfills. Given that a mature tree can produce as much oxygen in a season as 10 people inhale in a year, a serious alternative to paper books, magazines and newspapers needs to be considered. That alternative is e-books.
Before purchasing your next paper book, magazine or newspaper, consider your carbon footprint commitment. Read electronically.
Read An E-Book Week, March 9-15, 2008