Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Demand for New E-Reader Formats

Jenn here.  I have finally joined the 21st Century and bought an Android phone with Internet access. This phone does everything while I'm on the go. In fact, it is enabling me to write my first blog on it while we are heading to my daughter's swim meet. I still haven't learned everything, but I'm now able to identify with my parents when they are having to learn some new techno gadget. Suddenly, I find myself in their shoes--struggling to keep up with the latest technology.

The publishing industry is similar as it is entering into a new techno phase. All the new hype on e-books, Amazon's Kindle, Barnes & Noble's Nook, and Apple's new ipad, does bring a little cause for concern to those who may struggle with change. What does this mean to the publishing industry. While no one will agree on HOW things will change, everyone does agree that change WILL happen.

I think the best thing we can do as authors is to be open-minded. We will have to promote our books in both formats. I've had several people ask me if my book will be available in these e-readers. There is a new type of reader out there, one will will read a novel in any e-format, and that is the only way they want to buy it. This is the news I'm hearing from young readers, whiler older readers still prefer a traditional book. I don't consider myself old, as I'm in my 30's, and I still prefer a traditional book, but I am noticing a shift in the publishing climate--and in what readers want.

What about you? Are readers asking for your book in one of the new e-reader formats? Which do you prefer?


  1. Jenn,
    I agree with you, and I'm in my 30s - not old ; - that I'd rather have the book to hold in my hand. Now, I've never "held" the Kindle... I've read about the Ipad and considered... but I'm not completely sold on that techno path for my entertainment. I look at the computer so much during the day, I like to give my eyes a rest some times.

  2. I AM old! LOL And I still enjoy holding a book in my hand. Although I have to say I'm tempted to have a place I can store a gazillion books that won't take up shelf space.

    Still, I think e-books will get more and more popular. But I don't think they'll replace paper.

  3. Jennifer, I'm going to speak up as a 62-year-old reader and say...I love my Kindle!! I love to hold a book in my hands and wasn't interested in an e-reader until my husband surprised me with a Kindle when I went to visit my missionary daughter in Germany last summer. Whenever we sat down to read, I simply pulled the Kindle from my purse and read in whatever genre I was in the mood for at the time (I had about 20 books on it at the time). I still read physical books, but greatly prefer the Kindle.

    E-readers are popular with many people my age because of six font-size options. Most paperback print is too small for me to comfortably read, yet I'm not ready for large print, so this feature is a blessing. I can also hold it in one hand and lightly click to turn pages.

    The Kindle uses e-ink and is not backlit like a computer screen and Apple's iPad, so it is easy on the eyes. I can highlight, make notes, and transfer them to my computer if I need to. I also use the search feature a lot, as well as the dictionary. When I place the cursor beside a word, the definition appears at the bottom of the screen. The Kindle also works great for my one-year Bible reading.

    Sorry to write so much, but I wanted to try and explain why many of us love our e-readers. It is interesting to watch this fast-changing market.

  4. Carole, you weren't whining! :) And you gave some great information! Vince, who stops by our blog, has also bragged about being able to enlarge the font. He loves that feature.

    I'm glad you mentioned the lighting feature. that's something to consider when choosing a reader. I think the light of a computer screen is why I don't like reading a book on the computer. So I'll keep that in mind if I ever buy a reader.

    You know, one thing that really appeals to me about the new Kindles is that you can download a book anytime, anywhere. Of course, I would have to watch myself or I would run up quite a bill! :)

  5. By the way, I've also been to conference where editor and agents were talking about how much they loved them. They could take their work with them anywhere.