Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

why ebooks make my heart sink

Expand Messages
  • Allan Griffith
    Every time I hear that the works of some golden age crime writer are to be re-issued in ebook form my heart sinks. It makes things much tougher for publishers
    Message 1 of 22 , Feb 21, 2014
    • 0 Attachment

      Every time I hear that the works of some golden age crime writer are to be re-issued in ebook form my heart sinks. It makes things much tougher for publishers like Coachwhip who do a great job trying to re-issue such books as proper books.


      My suspicion of the ebook format grows and grows. If I’m going to buy a book I want to own it. I don’t want to own some vague licence to read the book under certain conditions, a licence that can be revoked at any time.


      My other issue with ebooks is that when books are published as real books they don’t go away. Many end up in the used book market so that those works will continue to be available in the future, even when that edition goes out of print. If an ebook goes out of print the book just disappears into the void.


      Al

    • Jon Jermey
      Allan, Every time I hear that the works of some golden age crime writer are to be reissued in ebook form, my heart rejoices, because it means that they will be
      Message 2 of 22 , Feb 21, 2014
      • 0 Attachment
        Allan,

        Every time I hear that the works of some golden age crime writer are to
        be reissued in ebook form, my heart rejoices, because it means that they
        will be available to me in my remote corner of the world at a price that
        reflects the value of the contents, and not the cost of printing,
        binding, storing and shipping several hundred grams of paper around the
        world.

        I also know that the first thing I will do when the ebook arrives is to
        make a DRM-free backup for my archives, using methods anyone can find
        via a simple web search, so that if the supplier goes out of business,
        or their government imposes some draconian new restriction on copyright
        or distribution rights, I will still have a readable copy of the book
        available. I rejoice too that nearly all my printed books, which were
        vulnerable to fungus, flood and fire, have now been scanned, and the
        copies safely backed up to a remote site, so that even if my house
        should burn down I won't lose the fruits of thirty years' collecting.

        And if you really think that real books 'don't go away', try collecting
        a complete set of John Rhode. Unless there are some undiscovered
        treasure troves out there -- all subject to fire, flood and fungus, just
        like mine -- then we've already lost a good many of even the classics
        from the Golden Age of paper. Moving them to digital form as rapidly as
        possible, and distributing digital copies around the world, will --
        quite literally -- stop the rot.

        Jon.

        On 21/02/14 19:59, Allan Griffith wrote:
        > Every time I hear that the works of some golden age crime writer are to
        > be re-issued in ebook form my heart sinks. It makes things much tougher
        > for publishers like Coachwhip who do a great job trying to re-issue such
        > books as proper books.
        >
        >
        > My suspicion of the ebook format grows and grows. If I’m going to buy a
        > book I want to own it. I don’t want to own some vague licence to read
        > the book under certain conditions, a licence that can be revoked at any
        > time.
        >
        >
        > My other issue with ebooks is that when books are published as real
        > books they don’t go away. Many end up in the used book market so that
        > those works will continue to be available in the future, even when that
        > edition goes out of print. If an ebook goes out of print the book just
        > disappears into the void.
        >
        >
        > Al
        >
      • curt evans
        Every time I hear the works of some golden age crime writer are to be reissued in ANY FORM AT ALL my heart rejoices. I love what Coachwhip does, but it s not
        Message 3 of 22 , Feb 21, 2014
        • 0 Attachment
          Every time I hear the works of some golden age crime writer are to be
          reissued in ANY FORM AT ALL my heart rejoices.

          I love what Coachwhip does, but it's not realistic to expect micro-presses
          using traditional forms to bear all the burdens of reprinting GA works. And
          for every person who prefers a traditional book, there's another who wants
          an eBook.

          Jon's right that most of the books by an author like John Street have indeed
          "gone away." Many of his titles go for hundreds of dollars on the
          secondhand market, when they come up at all. The majority of the copies
          were sold to rental libraries and were read until they fell apart. Worldcat
          lists two copies of Death of Two Brothers, one of his Miles Burton titles.
          How many copies do you think are in the hands of private collectors? Very,
          very few.

          With Freeman Crofts, even the paperback editions issues by House of Stratus
          a dozen years ago are now collectable. I just want these books to be
          available in some affordable form to readers. I love traditional books, but
          will take eBooks. And, as Jon says, they do some have some virtues all
          their own.

          Curt

          -----Original Message-----
          From: Jon Jermey
          Sent: Friday, February 21, 2014 4:14 AM
          To: GAdetection@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [GAdetection] why ebooks make my heart sink

          Allan,

          Every time I hear that the works of some golden age crime writer are to
          be reissued in ebook form, my heart rejoices, because it means that they
          will be available to me in my remote corner of the world at a price that
          reflects the value of the contents, and not the cost of printing,
          binding, storing and shipping several hundred grams of paper around the
          world.

          I also know that the first thing I will do when the ebook arrives is to
          make a DRM-free backup for my archives, using methods anyone can find
          via a simple web search, so that if the supplier goes out of business,
          or their government imposes some draconian new restriction on copyright
          or distribution rights, I will still have a readable copy of the book
          available. I rejoice too that nearly all my printed books, which were
          vulnerable to fungus, flood and fire, have now been scanned, and the
          copies safely backed up to a remote site, so that even if my house
          should burn down I won't lose the fruits of thirty years' collecting.

          And if you really think that real books 'don't go away', try collecting
          a complete set of John Rhode. Unless there are some undiscovered
          treasure troves out there -- all subject to fire, flood and fungus, just
          like mine -- then we've already lost a good many of even the classics
          from the Golden Age of paper. Moving them to digital form as rapidly as
          possible, and distributing digital copies around the world, will --
          quite literally -- stop the rot.

          Jon.

          On 21/02/14 19:59, Allan Griffith wrote:
          > Every time I hear that the works of some golden age crime writer are to
          > be re-issued in ebook form my heart sinks. It makes things much tougher
          > for publishers like Coachwhip who do a great job trying to re-issue such
          > books as proper books.
          >
          >
          > My suspicion of the ebook format grows and grows. If I’m going to buy a
          > book I want to own it. I don’t want to own some vague licence to read
          > the book under certain conditions, a licence that can be revoked at any
          > time.
          >
          >
          > My other issue with ebooks is that when books are published as real
          > books they don’t go away. Many end up in the used book market so that
          > those works will continue to be available in the future, even when that
          > edition goes out of print. If an ebook goes out of print the book just
          > disappears into the void.
          >
          >
          > Al
          >


          ------------------------------------

          Yahoo Groups Links
        • Allan Griffith
          ... For me books are an escape from the nightmare world of digital technology. I don t have to worry about compatibility issues, I don t have to try to
          Message 4 of 22 , Feb 21, 2014
          • 0 Attachment
            On 21 February 2014 21:14, Jon Jermey <jonjermey@...> wrote:
            I also know that the first thing I will do when the ebook arrives is to
            make a DRM-free backup for my archives

            For me books are an escape from the nightmare world of digital technology. I don't have to worry about compatibility issues, I don't have to try to comprehend the labyrinthine maze of digital rights, I don't have to worry if the download has failed, or if a file has become corrupted, I don't have to check that the battery has been charged, I don't have to think about whether I've bought the right format, I don't have the constant anxiety that yet another piece of digital technology has gone down the gurgler. 

            In other words, books are relaxation. Fiddling with digital technology is work.

            The idea of ebooks is great in theory. But then personal computers are a great idea in theory, but in practice my iMac is a perennial nightmare.

            Al
          • Allan Griffith
            ... What worries me is that the person who prefers a traditional book will be increasingly marginalised. If real books and e-books could co-exist all would be
            Message 5 of 22 , Feb 21, 2014
            • 0 Attachment
              On 21 February 2014 21:38, curt evans <praed_street@...> wrote:
              And
              for every person who prefers a traditional book, there's another who wants
              an eBook.

              What worries me is that the person who prefers a traditional book will be increasingly marginalised. If real books and e-books could co-exist all would be bliss. But my fear is that the real book is heading for extinction. But then I'm probably a dinosaur heading for extinction myself!  ;-)

              Al
            • Bob Houk
              This dinosaur loves ebooks. In my dotage, I have become a gypsy (if I may use that term without incurring the wrath of the Word Police), and ebooks allow me to
              Message 6 of 22 , Feb 21, 2014
              • 0 Attachment
                This dinosaur loves ebooks. In my dotage, I have become a gypsy (if I may use that term without incurring the wrath of the Word Police), and ebooks allow me to travel with a few thousand of my favorite books without adding an ounce to my luggage.

                Bob


              • Mike Detlefsen
                ... Having read the license terms, I d say they seem pretty straightforward to me, not vague at all. Printed books do go away. The Library of Alexandria, for
                Message 7 of 22 , Feb 21, 2014
                • 0 Attachment

                  On 21 Feb 2014, at 02:59 , Allan Griffith wrote:

                   


                  My suspicion of the ebook format grows and grows. If I’m going to buy a book I want to own it. I don’t want to own some vague licence to read the book under certain conditions, a licence that can be revoked at any time.

                  My other issue with ebooks is that when books are published as real books they don’t go away. Many end up in the used book market so that those works will continue to be available in the future, even when that edition goes out of print. If an ebook goes out of print the book just disappears into the void.

                  Having read the license terms, I'd say they seem pretty straightforward to me, not vague at all.

                  Printed books do go away. The Library of Alexandria, for example. Also, paper degrades, books are destroyed in fire, flood, etc.

                  If an ebook goes "out of print" i.e., withdrawn for some reason, it will stay on whatever device it is currently on.  I have half a dozen ebooks that were withdrawn from the Amazon store due to that particular publisher not actually having the rights to publish the ebook version. They are still in my ebook library, though. My ebooks are backed up in "the cloud". If my house is hit by a large meteor, the ebooks will still be available for reading, unlike my 4,000+ printed books.

                  I would not try to argue anyone out of sticking with printed books. I buy and read both, and will continue to. For the people taking sides, they will continue to do so and cherry-pick the data that supports their side. Me, I'm taking both sides. :-)

                  Mike
                • Jeffrey Marks
                  Every time I hear the works of some golden age crime writer are to be reissued in ANY FORM AT ALL my heart rejoices. Allan, I would like to read more of
                  Message 8 of 22 , Feb 22, 2014
                  • 0 Attachment
                    "Every time I hear the works of some golden age crime writer are to be 
                    reissued in ANY FORM AT ALL my heart rejoices." 

                    Allan, 

                    I would like to read more of certain GAD authors' works, but when the paper version copies cost between $100-300 per title, I fail to see how a digital edition is a bad thing. Most of the eBooks are $4-7 (or free if in the public domain.) 

                    As a voracious reader with neck and spine problems, the logistics of carrying multiple books around is daunting. It's much easier for me to carry 100 books on a tablet that fits under my arm. 

                    I've never had any of the problems you mention and like others on the list, I use a backup program that archives my books and has the ability to change formats if at some future date a common format is found. 

                    The eBook is not likely to kill paper copies. People still like them and buy them. From what we've seen so far, the eBook is likely to kill the mass market paperback; however, hard covers are alive and well. 

                    Jeff



                    --
                    Jeffrey Marks
                    www.jeffreymarks.com
                    Check out my website for news about my books and marketing tips of the month
                    Atomic Renaissance: Women Mystery Writers of the 1940s/1950s
                    Who Was That Lady? Craig Rice: The Queen of the Screwball Mystery
                    Anthony Boucher: A Biobibliography -- 2009 Anthony winner
                  • Patrick Ohl
                    Al, I am not yet a dinosaur, but I am well on my way to becoming an old fossil. But hey, H.M. was an old fossil in his later years, but that didn t stop him
                    Message 9 of 22 , Feb 22, 2014
                    • 0 Attachment
                      Al, I am not yet a dinosaur, but I am well on my way to becoming an old fossil. But hey, H.M. was an old fossil in his later years, but that didn't stop him from inventing a suitcase with wheels or performing magic as The Great Kafoozalum or playing baseball. So there's some hope for me, I suppose.

                      Perhaps it's because I was born with all this technology (almost) at my fingertips, but I don't find any of the issues you find. With a Kindle, it's ridiculously easy to make DRM-free backups. It's a simple plug-and-chug through a program which has not failed me yet. Compatibility issues? I haven't come across any. If you buy something from the Kindle store, it'll be in a Kindle format. And I haven't purchased a license to read some books in X amount of time, I've got the books themselves in a digital format. It'll never be lost in a fire or flooding, etc. It won't disintegrate. And best part is, I didn't have to go out and spend $300 because all the other copies are either long gone or in a private collection.

                      That being said, I have physical books as well and will read them just as readily. It's not as though when I read a "book" book, I swipe the page and expect it to change. I haven't forgotten what it's like to read these books (and for some books, like the massive G. K. Chesterton bio by Ian Ker, I'd prefer the physical book over the e-book). But my shelf space is very limited, and every book on my shelf means one less spot available for other books.

                      I do understand where you're coming from, though. I used to be like you, very suspicious of e-books and not wanting to "join" the crowd reading them. But when The Mysterious Press started back up as an e-press and other classic authors found their way back into e-print, that convinced me to give e-books a shot, and it's not a decision I regret.



                      From: Allan Griffith <dfordoom@...>
                      To: GAdetection@yahoogroups.com
                      Sent: Friday, February 21, 2014 3:59:24 AM
                      Subject: [GAdetection] why ebooks make my heart sink

                       
                      Every time I hear that the works of some golden age crime writer are to be re-issued in ebook form my heart sinks. It makes things much tougher for publishers like Coachwhip who do a great job trying to re-issue such books as proper books.

                      My suspicion of the ebook format grows and grows. If I’m going to buy a book I want to own it. I don’t want to own some vague licence to read the book under certain conditions, a licence that can be revoked at any time.

                      My other issue with ebooks is that when books are published as real books they don’t go away. Many end up in the used book market so that those works will continue to be available in the future, even when that edition goes out of print. If an ebook goes out of print the book just disappears into the void.

                      Al


                    • Last century Detective
                      I have a confession to make: I have read one or two detectives, now in the public domain, as ebooks and it wasn t as thoroughly unlikable as I hoped it would
                      Message 10 of 22 , Feb 22, 2014
                      • 0 Attachment

                        I have a confession to make: I have read one or two detectives, now in the public domain, as ebooks and it wasn't as thoroughly unlikable as I hoped it would be, but I still refuse to buy ebooks. If I pay for a book, I want to own a physical copy, especially from the writers I enjoy reading. So, for now, I'll use ebooks to read up on early-period mysteries.
                         
                        To Mike Grost: now that I have run out of excuses for why I haven't read your impossible crime stories yet... I'll give them a look ASAP.   


                        On Saturday, February 22, 2014 1:34 PM, Patrick Ohl <go_leafs_nation@...> wrote:
                         
                        Al, I am not yet a dinosaur, but I am well on my way to becoming an old fossil. But hey, H.M. was an old fossil in his later years, but that didn't stop him from inventing a suitcase with wheels or performing magic as The Great Kafoozalum or playing baseball. So there's some hope for me, I suppose.

                        Perhaps it's because I was born with all this technology (almost) at my fingertips, but I don't find any of the issues you find. With a Kindle, it's ridiculously easy to make DRM-free backups. It's a simple plug-and-chug through a program which has not failed me yet. Compatibility issues? I haven't come across any. If you buy something from the Kindle store, it'll be in a Kindle format. And I haven't purchased a license to read some books in X amount of time, I've got the books themselves in a digital format. It'll never be lost in a fire or flooding, etc. It won't disintegrate. And best part is, I didn't have to go out and spend $300 because all the other copies are either long gone or in a private collection.

                        That being said, I have physical books as well and will read them just as readily. It's not as though when I read a "book" book, I swipe the page and expect it to change. I haven't forgotten what it's like to read these books (and for some books, like the massive G. K. Chesterton bio by Ian Ker, I'd prefer the physical book over the e-book). But my shelf space is very limited, and every book on my shelf means one less spot available for other books.

                        I do understand where you're coming from, though. I used to be like you, very suspicious of e-books and not wanting to "join" the crowd reading them. But when The Mysterious Press started back up as an e-press and other classic authors found their way back into e-print, that convinced me to give e-books a shot, and it's not a decision I regret.



                        From: Allan Griffith <dfordoom@...>
                        To: GAdetection@yahoogroups.com
                        Sent: Friday, February 21, 2014 3:59:24 AM
                        Subject: [GAdetection] why ebooks make my heart sink

                         
                        Every time I hear that the works of some golden age crime writer are to be re-issued in ebook form my heart sinks. It makes things much tougher for publishers like Coachwhip who do a great job trying to re-issue such books as proper books.

                        My suspicion of the ebook format grows and grows. If I’m going to buy a book I want to own it. I don’t want to own some vague licence to read the book under certain conditions, a licence that can be revoked at any time.

                        My other issue with ebooks is that when books are published as real books they don’t go away. Many end up in the used book market so that those works will continue to be available in the future, even when that edition goes out of print. If an ebook goes out of print the book just disappears into the void.

                        Al




                      • Allan Griffith
                        ... Perhaps it s because I live in Australia and I m assuming that most of the ebooks aren t going to be available here anyway, just as most movie downloads
                        Message 11 of 22 , Feb 22, 2014
                        • 0 Attachment
                          On 22 February 2014 23:34, Patrick Ohl <go_leafs_nation@...> wrote:


                          Perhaps it's because I was born with all this technology (almost) at my fingertips, but I don't find any of the issues you find.

                          Perhaps it's because I live in Australia and I'm assuming that most of the ebooks aren't going to be available here anyway, just as most movie downloads (the legal ones) aren't available here. Ebooks also seem to me to be often wildly overpriced, considering that (to me) you're not actually buying anything real. It's like paying money for a painting and instead of getting a painting you just get a digital image of the painting.

                          And owning a Macintosh I find that downloading anything is a drama, and connecting any digital device to the Mac is a drama. Apple keep trying to force me to upgrade to their latest operating system even though my current operating system works just fine, so the only reason to upgrade is to give Apple more money. But I'm sure if I tried to use a Kindle I'd be told that I first have to upgrade my operating system.

                          My experiences with Apple (the Evil Empire) are part of the reason for my intense suspicion of anything digital these days.

                          Plus I don't want to buy a Kindle and find that it lasts six months, which is about the average life for any piece of digital hardware, and then I've lost all the books I've already paid for.

                          Every experience I've ever had with digital technology has been bad, so why give myself another headache?

                          Al
                        • pennsnakes
                          Al -- I certainly appreciate the support, I m sure other small POD publishers do also. I m actually very surprised to hear you re in Australia. Unfortunately,
                          Message 12 of 22 , Feb 23, 2014
                          • 0 Attachment
                            Al -- I certainly appreciate the support, I'm sure other small POD publishers do also. I'm actually very surprised to hear you're in Australia. Unfortunately, Lightning Source (the printer for myself and many other POD outfits) has had distribution issues in Australia. When they first built their facility there a couple years ago, they had big plans for partnering with online bookstores there, but those fell through when a couple partners went the way of Borders. Without a strong online bookstore like Amazon, it has been very tough getting Australians the books as cheaply as here in North America (or even in Europe, with Amazon UK distribution among others). Hopefully they can find new partners so that the online pricing isn't so ridiculous.
                            Since I'm rambling, I'll relate why I don't sell ebooks. I first started doing POD a bit over 10 years ago. At the time, Lightning Source offered an epub option, and I took advantage of that, garnering some sales through Amazon. I could price an ebook reasonably and still make a decent profit. Then Amazon bought Mobipocket and used that to develop their own proprietary ebook system. They dropped carrying other types of ebooks and set up a pricing scheme for Kindle that made it impossible to make a decent profit without overpricing the ebooks (Amazon takes 70% or so of ebooks principally made up of public domain material, which includes most of my books). So, it wasn't worth the hassle for me to continue creating ebooks (and since I'm a one-man operation, it was taking up too much time, anyway). I might still have a few of the old ebooks out there on some ebookstore somewhere, maybe the Thorpe Hazell railroad mysteries collection for the Nook?
                            I just bought a Kindle Fire in December. I downloaded some Julius Katz and Archie ebooks; will probably get the rest of them. I don't know that I'll spend too much time reading on it, though.
                            I do have a bunch more titles coming out in paperback this year. It just takes time to get everything together. It only takes a couple days to scan and OCR a book, but then I have to read through it to make corrections on the scans, place the layout, figure out a cover, etc. One of my "if I ever have time" projects will be a bit more time consuming. I ran across a newspaper detective from the early 1900s, a Chinese detective with 30-40 stories, but I'll have to use my Dragon Speak program to read it into Word, as the antiquated and poorly-scanned newspaper type can't be OCR'd directly.

                            Chad
                            CoachwhipBooks.com
                          • Allan Griffith
                            ... Last year was a bonanza year for Australian book buyers with the Australian dollar so strong that buying books from the US was ridiculously cheap. If you
                            Message 13 of 22 , Feb 24, 2014
                            • 0 Attachment
                              On 24 February 2014 10:37, <coachwhip.books@...> wrote:


                               it has been very tough getting Australians the books as cheaply as here in North America

                              Last year was a bonanza year for Australian book buyers with the Australian dollar so strong that buying books from the US was ridiculously cheap.

                              If you live in Australia buying books from overseas is your only option. The range of books available here is extremely small.


                               
                              I might still have a few of the old ebooks out there on some ebookstore somewhere, maybe the Thorpe Hazell railroad mysteries collection for the Nook?


                              I have your POD edition of the Thorpe Hazell railroad mysteries collection. It's enormous fun!

                              Al
                            • lesterleith
                              Chad, I appreciate the difficulties of publishing in these strange times. However, I, for one, simply cannot afford the space for any new books, so I now read
                              Message 14 of 22 , Feb 24, 2014
                              • 0 Attachment
                                Chad,

                                I appreciate the difficulties of publishing in these strange times. However, I, for one, simply cannot afford the space for any new books, so I now read exclusively on Kindle and tablet. And I would not be at all surprised to find that there are countless other such people (by choice or by necessity) who don't wish to buy hard copies of books. The market is much more tilted toward ebooks than it was even a few years ago, so print-only publishers may be passing up a good deal more money than they think. There are several Coachwhip books I would buy in etext form, but as I said, if they are available only in printed copies I must forgo them.

                                As noted, however, everybody must make the choices they think best, and I can understand your decision to keep things simple and publish solely in the form you've chosen. I respect that.

                                Best,

                                Sam Karnick


                                ---In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, <coachwhip.books@...> wrote:

                                Al -- I certainly appreciate the support, I'm sure other small POD publishers do also. I'm actually very surprised to hear you're in Australia. Unfortunately, Lightning Source (the printer for myself and many other POD outfits) has had distribution issues in Australia. When they first built their facility there a couple years ago, they had big plans for partnering with online bookstores there, but those fell through when a couple partners went the way of Borders. Without a strong online bookstore like Amazon, it has been very tough getting Australians the books as cheaply as here in North America (or even in Europe, with Amazon UK distribution among others). Hopefully they can find new partners so that the online pricing isn't so ridiculous.
                                Since I'm rambling, I'll relate why I don't sell ebooks. I first started doing POD a bit over 10 years ago. At the time, Lightning Source offered an epub option, and I took advantage of that, garnering some sales through Amazon. I could price an ebook reasonably and still make a decent profit. Then Amazon bought Mobipocket and used that to develop their own proprietary ebook system. They dropped carrying other types of ebooks and set up a pricing scheme for Kindle that made it impossible to make a decent profit without overpricing the ebooks (Amazon takes 70% or so of ebooks principally made up of public domain material, which includes most of my books). So, it wasn't worth the hassle for me to continue creating ebooks (and since I'm a one-man operation, it was taking up too much time, anyway). I might still have a few of the old ebooks out there on some ebookstore somewhere, maybe the Thorpe Hazell railroad mysteries collection for the Nook?
                                I just bought a Kindle Fire in December. I downloaded some Julius Katz and Archie ebooks; will probably get the rest of them. I don't know that I'll spend too much time reading on it, though.
                                I do have a bunch more titles coming out in paperback this year. It just takes time to get everything together. It only takes a couple days to scan and OCR a book, but then I have to read through it to make corrections on the scans, place the layout, figure out a cover, etc. One of my "if I ever have time" projects will be a bit more time consuming. I ran across a newspaper detective from the early 1900s, a Chinese detective with 30-40 stories, but I'll have to use my Dragon Speak program to read it into Word, as the antiquated and poorly-scanned newspaper type can't be OCR'd directly.

                                Chad
                                CoachwhipBooks.com
                              • Arthur Robinson
                                  I m coming late to this discussion.  As a librarian, I have a love-hate relationship with e-books.  I like that multiple people can access them, but it s
                                Message 15 of 22 , Feb 27, 2014
                                • 0 Attachment
                                   
                                  I'm coming late to this discussion.  As a librarian, I have a love-hate relationship with e-books.  I like that multiple people can access them, but it's slow to navigate them.  (With Google Books, you can scroll up and down; at our library, you have to go from page to page on the e-books we've subscribed to.  Also, our e-books often disappear without warning--and no, we're not allowed to download an e-book and save it.  Maybe some e-books work differently; I've never used a Kindle or other reader.  If I travelled a lot, I'd love e-books--much easier than packing enough books to tide you over flight cancellations.)
                                   
                                  I'd find e-books frustrating if I were reading a GAM; I like to flip back pages--"Wait, doesn't this witness's comment contradict what X said a few chapters ago?  Is that a clue?").  I'm also concerned about whether e-books will be readable in 20 years, a problem with much new technology.  (I can still play records from the 1950s.  Betamax tapes and laser discs, not so much.)
                                   
                                  On the other hand, I agree that it's good if ANY GAM is reissued in any format.  I'm a redaer more than a collector; often I can't afford the 1930s edition of a scarce book, and if a rare book is re-issued (as when Minnow Press re-issued the three Gladys Mitchell mysteries I didn't have and allowed me to complete my Mrs. Bradley collection), it's a plus.  If the e-books don't work in 20 years... well, at least a few libraries will have copies of the older print editions.  I'm more concerned that, if books are issued ONLY as e-books, in 20 or 30 years, new technology will make them obsolete.
                                   
                                  Incidentally, regarding Miles Burton's Death of Two Brothers:  COPAC (http://copac.ac.uk/) indicates there are copies at the British Library, the London Library (14 St James's Square), Oxford, and the National Library of Scotland. 
                                   

                                  Arthur Robinson, Reference Librarian
                                  Lewis Library, LaGrange College
                                  LaGrange, Georgia 30240
                                  USA


                                  On Monday, February 24, 2014 10:48 AM, "stkarnick@..." <stkarnick@...> wrote:
                                   
                                  Chad,

                                  I appreciate the difficulties of publishing in these strange times. However, I, for one, simply cannot afford the space for any new books, so I now read exclusively on Kindle and tablet. And I would not be at all surprised to find that there are countless other such people (by choice or by necessity) who don't wish to buy hard copies of books. The market is much more tilted toward ebooks than it was even a few years ago, so print-only publishers may be passing up a good deal more money than they think. There are several Coachwhip books I would buy in etext form, but as I said, if they are available only in printed copies I must forgo them.

                                  As noted, however, everybody must make the choices they think best, and I can understand your decision to keep things simple and publish solely in the form you've chosen. I respect that.

                                  Best,

                                  Sam Karnick


                                  ---In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, <coachwhip.books@...> wrote:

                                  Al -- I certainly appreciate the support, I'm sure other small POD publishers do also. I'm actually very surprised to hear you're in Australia. Unfortunately, Lightning Source (the printer for myself and many other POD outfits) has had distribution issues in Australia. When they first built their facility there a couple years ago, they had big plans for partnering with online bookstores there, but those fell through when a couple partners went the way of Borders. Without a strong online bookstore like Amazon, it has been very tough getting Australians the books as cheaply as here in North America (or even in Europe, with Amazon UK distribution among others). Hopefully they can find new partners so that the online pricing isn't so ridiculous.
                                  Since I'm rambling, I'll relate why I don't sell ebooks. I first started doing POD a bit over 10 years ago. At the time, Lightning Source offered an epub option, and I took advantage of that, garnering some sales through Amazon. I could price an ebook reasonably and still make a decent profit. Then Amazon bought Mobipocket and used that to develop their own proprietary ebook system. They dropped carrying other types of ebooks and set up a pricing scheme for Kindle that made it impossible to make a decent profit without overpricing the ebooks (Amazon takes 70% or so of ebooks principally made up of public domain material, which includes most of my books). So, it wasn't worth the hassle for me to continue creating ebooks (and since I'm a one-man operation, it was taking up too much time, anyway). I might still have a few of the old ebooks out there on some ebookstore somewhere, maybe the Thorpe Hazell railroad mysteries collection for the Nook?
                                  I just bought a Kindle Fire in December. I downloaded some Julius Katz and Archie ebooks; will probably get the rest of them. I don't know that I'll spend too much time reading on it, though.
                                  I do have a bunch more titles coming out in paperback this year. It just takes time to get everything together. It only takes a couple days to scan and OCR a book, but then I have to read through it to make corrections on the scans, place the layout, figure out a cover, etc. One of my "if I ever have time" projects will be a bit more time consuming. I ran across a newspaper detective from the early 1900s, a Chinese detective with 30-40 stories, but I'll have to use my Dragon Speak program to read it into Word, as the antiquated and poorly-scanned newspaper type can't be OCR'd directly.

                                  Chad
                                  CoachwhipBooks.com


                                • lesblatt
                                  ... Actually, on the Kindle, there s a full search function. If Joe Suspect says something that seems to contradict what he s told me before, I can do a search
                                  Message 16 of 22 , Feb 28, 2014
                                  • 0 Attachment

                                    >>I'd find e-books frustrating if I were reading a GAM; I like to flip back pages--"Wait, doesn't this witness's comment contradict what X said a few chapters ago?  Is that a clue?").  I'm also concerned about whether e-books will be readable in 20 years, a problem with much new technology.  (I can still play records from the 1950s.  Betamax tapes and laser discs, not so much.)
                                    Actually, on the Kindle, there's a full search function. If Joe Suspect says something that seems to contradict what he's told me before, I can do a search for a word or two - or even the name "Joe Smith" - and it will search that book and bring up all instances. Beats the "Hmm...did I read that last night or was it the night before and how far back..." system, in my view. ;-)
                                     
                                     
                                  • Allan Griffith
                                    ... I m concerned about whether they ll even be readable in ten years time. What really concerns me is that I suspect that the companies pushing this
                                    Message 17 of 22 , Feb 28, 2014
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      On 28 February 2014 13:16, Arthur Robinson <awrobins@...> wrote:


                                       

                                       I'm also concerned about whether e-books will be readable in 20 years, a problem with much new technology.  (I can still play records from the 1950s.  Betamax tapes and laser discs, not so much.)

                                      I'm concerned about whether they'll even be readable in ten years' time. What really concerns me is that I suspect that the companies pushing this technology will ensure that they are not. They will want us to continually "upgrade" and that tends to mean that they want us to buy what we have already bought all over again.

                                      Al
                                    • Janis Susan May Patterson
                                      Which brings up the question of how many of my current ebooks I will want to read again in 20 years? Though I do agree that the software people do want us to
                                      Message 18 of 22 , Feb 28, 2014
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        Which brings up the question of how many of my current ebooks I will want to read again in 20 years? Though I do agree that the software people do want us to buy and rebuy every few years. I think it heinous.

                                        My husband and I buy reference works for all our interests extravagantly, and always in paper. What I call disposable fiction - the read it once and let it go stuff - I get in e. We live in a house with two dedicated libraries, half of a third and bookcases in almost every room, plus boxes and boxes in the garage. Without ebooks I would be hardpressed to read anything new. Once or twice out of every 100 fiction books I find one I would like to keep. I either buy that in paper or - in extremis - print it out and put in a 3 ring notebook. 

                                        To me a much more important question is, will people still be reading in 20 or 50 or 100 years? Perhaps that's an extremist point of view, but a look at modern society and the place of reading - especially what is not 'new and trendy' - is depressing.

                                        Susan


                                        On Fri, Feb 28, 2014 at 7:31 AM, Allan Griffith <dfordoom@...> wrote:
                                         

                                        On 28 February 2014 13:16, Arthur Robinson <awrobins@...> wrote:
                                         I'm also concerned about whether e-books will be readable in 20 years, a problem with much new technology.  (I can still play records from the 1950s.  Betamax tapes and laser discs, not so much.)

                                        I'm concerned about whether they'll even be readable in ten years' time. What really concerns me is that I suspect that the companies pushing this technology will ensure that they are not. They will want us to continually "upgrade" and that tends to mean that they want us to buy what we have already bought all over again.

                                         
                                        --
                                        ...always a good story!
                                        www.JanisSusanMay.com
                                        ...committing crime with style!
                                        www.JanisPattersonMysteries.com
                                      • Allan Griffith
                                        ... I share your pessimism. It seems that our cultural memory is becoming ever shorter. Part of the problem is that books (or movies) made prior to the 1970s
                                        Message 19 of 22 , Feb 28, 2014
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          On 1 March 2014 01:27, Janis Susan May Patterson <isisindallas@...> wrote:



                                          To me a much more important question is, will people still be reading in 20 or 50 or 100 years? Perhaps that's an extremist point of view, but a look at modern society and the place of reading - especially what is not 'new and trendy' - is depressing.

                                          Susan

                                          I share your pessimism. It seems that our cultural memory is becoming ever shorter. Part of the problem is that books (or movies) made prior to the 1970s are simply incomprehensible to generations schooled to believe that the passing cultural fashions of our age are eternal truths.

                                          Al
                                        • Mike Detlefsen
                                          The problem with the laser discs, Betamax tapes, vinyl records, and such is that they rely upon specific hardware to be functional. If the hardware is no
                                          Message 20 of 22 , Feb 28, 2014
                                          • 0 Attachment
                                            The problem with the laser discs, Betamax tapes, vinyl records, and such is that they rely upon specific hardware to be functional. If the hardware is no longer manufactured/available, then you can't get the information from the storage medium. eBooks are basically text HTML text files, so don't rely on a specific hardware for access (leaving aside the issue of DRM, which is trivial to circumvent). These files are in the cloud, so there's no problem getting them with just about any device that can go on-line. I'm not worried about being able to read ebooks in 20 years, or in 50 years. I'm more worried about losing information because of inadequate backups.

                                            Mike




                                            On 28 Feb 2014, at 07:31 , Allan Griffith wrote:

                                             

                                            On 28 February 2014 13:16, Arthur Robinson <awrobins@...> wrote:


                                             

                                             I'm also concerned about whether e-books will be readable in 20 years, a problem with much new technology.  (I can still play records from the 1950s.  Betamax tapes and laser discs, not so much.)

                                            I'm concerned about whether they'll even be readable in ten years' time. What really concerns me is that I suspect that the companies pushing this technology will ensure that they are not. They will want us to continually "upgrade" and that tends to mean that they want us to buy what we have already bought all over again.

                                            Al


                                          • Ronald Smyth
                                            These are simply documents read by computer. It seems most unlikely to me that computers will not be around in 20 years. I, on the other hand will likely not
                                            Message 21 of 22 , Feb 28, 2014
                                            • 0 Attachment
                                              These are simply documents read by computer. It seems most unlikely to me that computers will not be around in 20 years. I, on the other hand will likely not be. I already possess programs that can rework these e-books to multiple formats. That is: Epub to .mobi to .doc to .txt to .azw etcetera

                                              Ron Smyth
                                              From: Allan Griffith <dfordoom@...>
                                              To: GAdetection@yahoogroups.com
                                              Sent: Friday, February 28, 2014 8:31:18 AM
                                              Subject: Re: [GAdetection] RE: why ebooks make my heart sink

                                               
                                              On 28 February 2014 13:16, Arthur Robinson <awrobins@...> wrote:


                                               

                                               I'm also concerned about whether e-books will be readable in 20 years, a problem with much new technology.  (I can still play records from the 1950s.  Betamax tapes and laser discs, not so much.)

                                              I'm concerned about whether they'll even be readable in ten years' time. What really concerns me is that I suspect that the companies pushing this technology will ensure that they are not. They will want us to continually "upgrade" and that tends to mean that they want us to buy what we have already bought all over again.

                                              Al


                                            • Bob Houk
                                              I agree, Ron. I think it s possible that some formats might be left behind, and I can t imagine that the primary formats (e.g., epub) will be unreadable
                                              Message 22 of 22 , Mar 1, 2014
                                              • 0 Attachment
                                                I agree, Ron. I think it's possible that some formats might be left behind, and I can't imagine that the primary formats (e.g., epub) will be unreadable anytime soon.

                                                I keep my collection in epub, because that seems to be the most common, but if the market started moving on to another format, I'd simply convert my epubs to that.

                                                I don't think this is much of a concern.

                                                Bob


                                                 

                                                These are simply documents read by computer. It seems most unlikely to me that computers will not be around in 20 years. I, on the other hand will likely not be. I already possess programs that can rework these e-books to multiple formats. That is: Epub to .mobi to .doc to .txt to .azw etcetera

                                                Ron Smyth

                                              Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.