Today I received an email, that started: Just ahead of World War II, there was a radical invention that shook the foundations of book publishing. It was the paperback book. This was a time when movie tickets cost 10 or 20 cents, and books cost $2.50. The new paperback cost 25 cents – it was ten times cheaper. Readers loved the paperback and millions of copies were sold in just the first year.
(Wow...Awesome!!! Reading can open the doors to other worlds, can provide knowledge...and now they made it affordable to the world...YEAH!!)
Then I read the next part: With it being so inexpensive and with so many more people able to afford to buy and read books, you would think the literary establishment of the day would have celebrated the invention of the paperback, yes? Nope. Instead, they dug in and circled the wagons. They believed low cost paperbacks would destroy literary culture and harm the industry (not to mention their own bank accounts). Many bookstores refused to stock them, and the early paperback publishers had to use unconventional methods of distribution – places like newsstands and drugstores
What? Ruin the literary world? No...need I remind people that many publishers and "authors" have said that Stephen King, though popular and weaver of fantastical stories, is not a "good author" because of his wordiness, sentence structure, brashness...the list goes on and on. (FYI, I think Stephen King is an EXCELLENT author, but I judge a book for its story)
Keeping Stephen King in mind I ask: Isn't the point of reading to open the mind to new ideas and thoughts? If I want a grammar lesson I will read Barron's Painless Grammar...a fantastic book for learning.
Before all you Grammar Nazi's get upset, its okay, I get it. Language is important, without certain rules how can we even begin to express ourselves. Language and grammar is important...but is grammar the Most important thing in a novel? I think the MOST important thing of a NOVEL is the READER. While I love Vladimir Nabokov, one of the most well written authors, that doesn't mean I can't enjoy Stephen King. (I wonder how all the fans of Stephanie Myer's felt while reading the "customer reviews" for the third book...many people asked if the book was even edited at all..WAIT...I know how they felt: They probably defended her, WHY? Because they happened to love the book...and in the end..isn't that's what is important.) (I've never read Stephanie Myer's so I really don't have an opinion on her.)
OKAY....I side tracked. I believe that small publishers and independent authors should have a voice. E-books have given them an avenue, and while we sometimes think: Yes, but we have to wade through a lot of slush to get to a good author. I remind you I can say the same thing for the BIG PUBLISHING house AUTHORS....Sorry, but I have read many a "big publisher" author that made me go a bit crazy and scream out: How did this get published and end up on the Best Sellers List? AHHHHH.
Yes publishers should be allowed to make money. Yes author's should be allowed to make money. But there comes a time when enough is enough. 14.99 and 19.99 for an EBOOK...NO!!!!! That is so silly and to be honest, as a Reader and an Author, I find it insulting. "The fact is many established incumbents in the industry have taken the position that lower e-book prices will “devalue books” and hurt “Arts and Letters.” I disagree, and wonder what your opinion is about it.
By now you should have heard about the argument going on between Hachette and Amazon, if not here is an economical stance on it: HERE written by Forbes contributor Panos Mourdoukoutas
In reality this is two companies fighting for profits....and I wonder...are they even thinking about the reader? As a reader, and not an author, I think reading should be affordable. I don't think that jacking up prices so a reader must pick between a book and a movie helps anyone. Its like saying: You must PAY to read...You must SUFFER to read...What? Shouldn't I have enough money to buy a book and go to a movie? Doesn't that help the economy more?
In the end, we the consumers will have to decide. If you don't think an e-book should be priced at 14.99, don't buy it. Plain and simple. I know I won't. I don't care how much I love the author, I am not spending that kind of cash on an e-book. What about you? What do you want to pay for an e-book?
As always, have a wonderful day!