Read an E-book Week!

It’s Read an E-book Week! There are all kinds of things going on to mark this event, you can find out more about them here:
I hadn’t really planned anything for the week –last week was insane! Not only did I return to work after a wonderful week off, softball season started at the high school last week (daughter), the elementary school held their annual Theater Week (son). The day job was brutal – filled with webinar training on our new products. The significance of this week totally slipped my mind in all the mania. Until today, when thankfully, Twitter and a few other of my hangouts reminded me. Thanks everyone! So in honor of Read an E-book Week, I thought I’d talk about how to read an e-book.
I run into a lot of people who have no idea exactly what an e-book is. They ask me, “But how can I read it if it’s not an actual book?” There’s the first misconception – that because a book is digital, it’s not really a book. The old “if it doesn’t have paper pages, it’s not a book” argument. So I launch into my standard explanation: “Of course it’s a real book. It has characters, a plot, and a well-written story. Just because it’s in a different format, doesn’t make it any less a book.” And that 100,000 words I wrote – they’re just as real as anything I’d submit to a print publisher.
The next argument I usually get is that without a reader, a person can’t read e-books. Again, not true. Barnes & Noble has a free Nook application for your PC. If you have a computer, you can read any e-book – most are available in pdf format, which almost everyone can utilize, or there are, like B&N, applications to read e-books on your computer. If you have a smart phone, or a tablet, you can read e-books on those, as well. Seeing the comprehension clearing the blank stare is always an exciting moment. They understand! Hurray! lol
The conversation usually changes at that point – now they want to know what sorts of books are available in digital formats? The answer is – just about every single one. Almost every print book has an e-format counterpart available for purchase. Sometimes the digital format comes after the print release, sometimes at the same time. It varies – for lots of reasons. With publishers who are primarily e-publishers, obviously the focus is on the e-formats for the books, but many e-publishers also offer certain titles in POD (Print On Demand) format. The requirements for a book to be made available in POD vary by publisher.
The question I always get next is which reader I have. I prefer the Sony myself. The newest version is fantastic, has wireless functionality and so far, has an excellent battery life, loads fast and has lots of new features for notes and such. I actually do my editing/revisions on my books using the Reader. The pricing has gotten better as well – the Sony website currently shows a list price of $129. I know there are those who swear by their Kindle, or their Nook. I’ve never had either, so can’t speak to that, but there are benefits to each device. It depends on what you want and what you need. But the biggest selling point for an e-reader always seems to be how many books it can hold. I hold up my slim pink Reader and proudly declare I have over 300 books on it at any given time. The understanding has now evolved into pure excitement. Telling a person who loves to read that they can carry that many books at the same time is like letting a kid loose in a toy store!
The portability of the e-reader is also a huge conversion selling point – you can carry it in your purse and read anywhere you happen to have a few minutes of downtime.  Hey, I’ve been known to read the back of a cereal box in a pinch and know many others like that. The evolution of e-readers has been a godsend to people like us! I am never without something to read anymore. On line at the inspection station, on breaks at work, waiting in a doctor’s office, or to pick up kids. I pull it out and read a few pages where I can.
So tell me what reader you prefer and why. Do you have more than one? I know plenty of people who do. What turned you on to your reader of choice?  I’ll be giving away a copy of one of my current titles to a random commenter – your choice of titles! You’ll be all set to Read an E-book this week!

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