I remember when books were things that you used to go to a bookshop for, days before kindle. When shop assistants lugged round heavy piles of them. I remember being at University and there was a central part of the library where the books to be taken out by the hour were kept, precious texts, read over and over without highlighter pen disturbance, before microfiching time away. Searching for information didn’t require a computer. There were rows of bound encylopedia at the library filled with everything you would need to know and that information only needed to be updated once a year, not every refresh. There were little cards in the library, held in drawers, one for every book. One small bookstand of teenage books and the ones everyone was talking about before there was a wizard upon the stage of fiction and when vampires were Counts rather than teenagers with hungry crushes.
To you books might be the physical objects, turned pages, handwritten notes, bookmarked with card or something that serves just as well that you happened to find, a bus ticket, a postcard from a friend. Or is the book just its message, the sum of its knowledge passed from the thoughts of the writer to you the reader? The knowledge from that book or the memories of the story and plot interfacing with all the memories that you already have and all the experience that you have ever had. I use a kindle now simply because I move home so often and the removals men need the sturdiest boxes for books. We move from a large home to a small home and then back again and books were getting weary of the journey.
Visual books are going to survive this digitalisation of print a little while longer. Coffee table books, design books, books with intricate diagrams, until the rise of the coffee table e-book reader. Any book, ready to download right now, ready to use up your time with thoughts and ideas of someone else. A tap to be turned off sometimes to realise all the things I already have but have not yet read as more things to read clamour for my attention.
Why do you choose paper books or kindle editions?
Are self-help / coaching or business books better in paper form or digital form?
Do they ever really tell the publisher that you’d like the book in kindle format? 🙂