I’ve been reading Publisher’s Weekly lately about the price war between Amazon and Walmart. I’ve also read about B&N’s new eReader, the Nook.
So, here’s my question to all you readers and writers out there: how will eBooks and eReaders change the way you read or buy? What effect do you think it will have on publishing? What effect do you think it might have on the writer?
The only think I can say is that music survived, and so will literature. I do think the profit margins are going to drop, but more from the economy than anything else. People without jobs don’t buy anything, much less books. Buy an eReader? Not the unemployed. They’ll go to the library. Those with better funds? Sure. It’s new, and it’s trendy, it’s an easy way to carry more than one book on vacation, etc. I have a friend and a relative who own a Kindle and they love them. I have more friends and relatives that prefer a real book. Me? Real. As geeky as I am, give me a real book. My friend and relative with the Kindles? They’re always talking about how cheap book titles are. I suppose. But, the device is expensive enough to make up that difference unless you’re more than an avid reader. You’d have to be a rabid reader. Prices of print books have dropped. Seriously, nearly the same price for print as an eReader title? Still, eReaders are pretty cool. Just not for me.
Now, about authors: I think the tried and true money makers will be fine. It’s the writer trying to break into the biz that’s going to have a hard go of it all. With profits tight, I don’t think there will be as many debut authors over the next few years.