I recently met with a dear friend who works at a bookstore and she asked me, as a writer, how I like my Kindle. She said their customers ask about e-readers all the time, and since she doesn’t have one, she’s not exactly sure how to answer.
Here’s my answer – and I know it is bound to anger some people. If so, please let me know in the comments. 🙂
If you truly love reading, then there is no reason NOT to have an e-reader.
I know there’s the argument about the experience and feel of a hardbound book, but that’s not all that reading is. Since I received my Kindle last Christmas, I have read more books in one year than I ever have — free, discounted, full priced and everything in between. But the cost here isn’t the issue (especially with the basic Kindle at $80). It is the ease, the accessibility and the sheer volume of material you can carry and absorb at one time. That is what an e-reader is.
And to be clear — I read the SAME amount of printed books as I have in the past. The extra e-books I’ve read are above and beyond. And I’ve been able to read more spectacular books than I thought possible. It is about the story. The content. The words on the page. It doesn’t matter if it is ink or e-ink or a tablet screen.
I’m not arguing the end of printed books or that you should stop buying printed books. I’m arguing that the argument for not wanting an e-reader because of the “experience” of reading a book is bogus. If that is your only argument, then you’re not a true lover of the written word.
I could go on and on about the other benefits (namely, saving bookshelf space) of e-readers, but I’ll leave that for another discussion.
Now, let’s go. Tell me what you think. 🙂