Easy Reader

We’re talking e-readers this week, any and all kinds. I have to admit when I was young and saw the people on Star Trek with access to entire libraries on small, flat devices, I thought it was purely science fiction, never possible, but no more; it is reality.
And, like one old fellow in an episode of the original Star Trek, I prefer my books in-hand. There is something so lasting and personal in a real book, especially an old book, which was meant to last.
I remember being fascinated as a kid in elementary school by handmade books. When we were told to illustrate a report on the Middle Ages, I drew a monk copying a manuscript.(And if any monk looked like the one I managed to mangle, it was just as well he put his hand to work, head to prayer and kept out of the gene pool!)
I loved my books when I was a kid and held on to all of them, but most were lost when family moved state-to-state and were left in storage. I could weep. I even made a couple of books of my own as a child; I impressed my teachers.

I spoke last week of how I pictured book shops and how my home resembles one that I had pictured in my head. I haven’t counted the books here, but they number in the thousands,(rough estimate is more than 3,000)\;we have books on nearly every subject. My husband admitted that we may need to thin some out, but don’t expect more than a minor percentage to go. I wish I could be sure those who would appreciate the books will have them after we are gone. I guess I should be looking for homes for them now.

I would never scan them into an ereader, even if I could.

I love libraries; I basically have my own but I am still at our local branch a great deal. I can’t imagine not having libraries to attend, to browse through. The cold computer just doesn’t arouse the same feelings as wandering the shelves, perusing the tomes, picking out a few pages to size up the story, seeing the illustrations up close. Looking at the excerpts online just doesn’t have the same effect, BUT….

I have to admit that through the computer and Internet I have access to so many more writers, including the Hound and the Foxes here. I would never have known them and so many others, nor could I find all of their works in local libraries or bookshops. And I would not be able to indulge in buying as many books by as many authors as I have, (mostly via Amazon), and have them right here on my computer.
Yes, I am behind the times as usual, but I do have a Kindle for PC.I am about to move to as basic an ereader as I can find for the books I have, (and the more to come, I am sure). I just don’t get the time to sit at the computer for as long as I’d like to get through all the reading that I could do elsewhere, and I can carry so many stories in my purse when I do get a device. I am looking forward to that, BUT…

I am still so thrilled when pick up a new book, whether or not it is actually new. I LOVE autographed copies of books, and of getting books autographed from a few favorite authors or even from friends and family members who write; wish there was some way to personalize an ebook.
I worry that the electronic books are not going to last, although  paperbacks books disintegrate far too quickly and the hardbound ones are not made like the old ones, plus many have slipped into obscurity when they have gone out-of-print, so I guess there are two sides to that  argument. Still, will  the electronic works survive somewhere?

Am I concerned with piracy? Somewhat. I admit to buying used books; I have no problem with that when they are out-of-print or when only cheap copies are available, especially if they are classics, far removed from paying the authors royalties.
I wish I could afford all new copies of new books, for the writers’ sakes, though I try to as often as possible. I can do so with ebooks, but Scott Turow, President of the Authors’ Guild, points out that Amazon is pushing to be able to resell ebooks. The royalties from many ebooks are incredibly low; reselling them with no gain for the authors is going to be catastrophic…if no one is getting paid, or getting paid enough, there will be next to no more books available to sell; it won’t be worth a writer’s time, so he assumes. He may have a point. He also worries about libraries making all writings universally freely available online. Will that be a problem? I don’t know.
Take a few minutes; this is very interesting,( and if you are a writer, you should be on guard):Scott Turow on Book TV

That said, though, I am looking forward to having ereader in hand, reading away anywhere and everywhere, catching up with works of friends.I try to catch some quick pages while my hands are otherwise occupied  and  real books close on me, or (horrors!), I get the  pages dirty trying to turn them.  Yet I  know my next visit to the library will not only result in  my borrowing books, but more than likely buying  some discards.The hardbound and paperbacks are a big part of my world…But

I’m ready for my Star Trek ‘volumes’…what next? A Dick Tracy Two-Way Wrist radio? My cell phone is pretty close already!


About Tonette Joyce

Tonette was a once-fledgling lyricists-bookkeeper, turned cook/baker/restaurateur and is now exploring different writing venues,(with a stage play recently completed). She has had poetry and nonfiction articles published in the last few years. Tonette has been married to her only serious boyfriend for more than thirty years and she is, as one person described her, family-oriented almost to a fault. Never mind how others have described her, she is,(shall we say), a sometime traditionalist of eclectic tastes.She has another blog : "Tonette Joyce:Food,Friends,Family" here at WordPress.She and guests share tips and recipes for easy entertaining and helps people to be ready for almost anything.
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9 Responses to Easy Reader

  1. jeff7salter says:

    Lots of great stuff here, Tonette.
    Big LOL on the wrist TV/radio from Dick Tracy time. I well remember those appearing in the comic strip and thought “gosh, that will NEVER happen.”
    I’ve already seen ads on TV for them. Marketing for Christmas gifts for kids … since they are presumably easier to keep up with than something in one’s pocket.
    What next?


    • I saw the ad last night,Jeff! I guess those flying tubs that old Dick used to tool around in?(The looked like the top of ‘cherry pickers’.)
      Thanks for the “great stuff” comment!


      • jeff7salter says:

        very sorry that you lost so many of your childhood books in that family move. I can see both sides of that: as the kid and as the parents trying to move as cheaply as possible. But it must hurt so much more to know that they were just abandoned in a storage facility. That would haunt me too.


    • No, worse than that, Jeff.I was grown and married. A family member simply did not handle things well and had the family follow me tot he sate I had moved to.Many things were unnecessarily abandoned in storage.Joe and I could have saved them, had we known.


  2. pjharjo says:

    AFA Start Trek – It seems the future is here, Tonette. Your comment on your illustration of a Monk, cracked me up! LOL!

    I don’t remember having too many books, when I was a kid. (Please don’t blame my parents, I was too into horses to ask for a book!) But I do remember how precious the books were that I DID have. A favorite from my very early childhood that I can still picture in my memory (imagine that!) was a book on Fairy Tales. I think its name was Famous French Fairy Tales. The author’s name is pictured there in my mind, along with the book, but it’s too fuzzy for me to make out. I held onto that dark green cloth-covered book for a long time. Don’t know what ever happened to it. “/ Don’t remember if I ever made any of my own in school, either, but I’m sure I must have bc that seems to be a thing they do in schools.

    I have a small, but LARGE, library in my office. It depends on how you look at it. 😉 My bookshelves in there are floor to ceiling, cover one wall, and still contain some books I haven’t even read, yet. Someday, someone in my future WILL, will inherit them all.

    What would be the sense of putting them into an ereader? That would take away their quality of REALNESS. I’ve still got some text books from my days at university, too. I’ve never been able to understand how people could write in their books. I never could! (Even though I was told I would.) I still can’t and I’m not shy of speaking up boldly if I am forced to witness someone writing in their book (text or otherwise)!

    AFA libraries vs. computers, I have to admit; my school days taught me to choose computers over libraries bc of their infinite research value! A person can find anything they want to find on the computer without leaving the comfort of their home office. Computers enabled me to spend less time in getting those research papers written and thus allowed me more time for my writing! 🙂

    Sorry, but I’m being the devil’s advocate here on this one subject, Tonette. I have to suggest you get yourself an ereader as opposed to Kindle for PC. While I had K for PC before I got my Fire, I have to say I much prefer my Fire to my PC for reading. I think you probably would, too. And I consider myself to be “behind the times here, too!” LOL!

    I, too, love the personalization of an autographed book. Did you know there is an app out for authors to e-autograph, too? I have one on my BlogSpot. Just sayin’ 😉

    I believe eBooks will survive as long as the technology to support them (humanity), does. That’s one thing I really like about ebooks – whereas print books will decay and go out of print, ebooks will be here forever! That’s my theory and I’m sticking to it! 🙂 I guess I’ve got one foot in each of two generations on the subject of e vs. traditional.

    And about piracy, it is one of the world’s evils. If it happens to me, then I’ll just envision it as taken by someone who really likes my writing, but cannot afford to buy my book, which means my name has become known. 🙂 That’s what we want, right? Worry about what might be in my future will only do me harm, not good. So I choose not to worry about it.

    I can only afford a few at this time, but that will not drive me to steal those I can’t afford. Maybe someone else has a different opinion on how badly they need my books, which leads to their act of theft. Lower moral values also play into their decision, and I feel sorry for those who decide they must steal (pirate) from someone else’s hard work.

    I don’t know what Amazon’s problem is. They’re already making a fortune; why must they make more by denying authors their fair due? That’s Piracy in and of itself!

    I haven’t had a chance to listen to Scott Turow yet, but I will. Getting a book’s pages dirty ranks up there with writing on them, IMHO.

    They’ve already got an ala “Dick Tracy” phone out. LOL!


    • Well, Janette, THIS should have been your Tuesday post!Great ideas.
      I do see your point on people who can’t afford your work,(Bono doesn’t care if U2 is pirated a bit because they DO make a fortune otherwise), however,I think you are naive if you think that only people who can’t afford a lot of books are doing the downloading;as things look on the near future ,Amazon could download for free and then sell them, or ‘fence’ them for pirates.
      No, I agree about the hand-held reader.I just haven’t taken the time to search and frankly, stretch the budget.(Budget is kind of tight .)
      Are you ready for THIS coming Tuesday?


      • pjharjo says:

        Please don’t start calling me names (naïve), Tonette. LOL! I did infer there were other culprits/reasons for piracy when I dropped Amazon’s name and when I mentioned Piracy as “one of the world’s evils.” 🙂 Love Ya, Anyways!

        You say this should have been my Tuesday post. Can I still use it for Tuesday? Huh? Huh? LOL! I guess that answers your question re: am I ready for THIS Tuesday.


  3. Iris B says:

    Great “closing argument” to a week or month of everything concerning ebooks/ereaders!
    Now I’ve gotta find out about the Dick Tracy wrist watch 😉


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