Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Reading Green

The other day my husband and I were out running errands and he was teasing me about the amount of money I spend on books. Okay...hm, I didn't mention HIS hobbies and major expenses like boats and such. Hey, my little addictions are fairly minor compared with his but that's another story. Lol. Actually it felt waaaay good to be able to say I hadn't actually gone into a bookstore in a long time.

Am I crazy? A book addict not going into a bookstore?

Nope, as of last Christmas I have an e-book reader and my world has changed dramatically because of it. It's the neatest deal and if you don't have one, please save up and invest. You'll make up for the little expense with all the money you'll save AND do your part for the environment. If you've ever thought of going GREEN now is the time. If the cost of gas doesn't convince you, then think about how the prices at the grocery stores have gone up. The price of books will go up, too. Believe it. That being said, my ebookwise reader is a bargain at around $140. Other readers are more expensive but in the long run are also a bargain. How much do you spend on a average visit to the book store? Now...most of you guys are book hogs like me. Last year, I'd walk out of a bookstore with at least two hardbacks and I don't know HOW many paperbacks. Hey! I'm an addict. What can I say? I figure in the course of a couple months, I would spend on tradional paper books the price of my little ebookwise reader.

When you look at it in that context, it's a great deal. I can store many, many books on my reader. It is roughly the size of a paperback book, you can change the font size, load your personal documents on it, AND it's backlit so nightime reading is so so easy.

This year I've spent less than $60 on books. It's JUNE!!!!! Isn't that the craziest??? To be honest, I haven't been reading as much as I'd like because of deadlines and such but it's been cool to visit Ellora's Cave and buy 4-5 books for roughly $17. That's a bargain. Even major NY publishers are jumping on the ebook bandwagon. They were a little slow to catch on but most of them now offer their books in e-version.

Yesterday Anne blogged about book covers and several commented they kept the racier covers hidden from the little ones or others who might be offended by the art. Problem solved with an e-reader. Recent polls show younger people in huge numbers are ready and willing to jump into this technology. Technology is improving to the point that some industry people who know their stuff say they actually see the death of the brick and mortar bookstores. My daughter got a Blackberry for her birthday and can download books onto it. WOW. Isn't that cool?

Have to admit that a few years ago, I wondered if I would like a reader. I wasn't keyed into how much talent is out there on the internet and now I feel so spoiled. I'm a happy convert to the whole thing and actually PREFER my reader to paper books. I can carry my library in my purse and vacation??? Nice to know I'll have everything I need without taking an extra suitcase for my books. So initially, the price of a reader might make you gasp but I promise, you will save BIG money in the long run. You can pick one up for roughly the same amount of money you'd spend on four hardback books. How many hardbacks do you have on your shelves?

It's worth considering. Money saving, easy to use, and you help the planet! What more could you ask for?

Chatting Today: Today I'm chatting with erotic romance authors Wendi Darlin and Paige Tyler at Savannah Chase's loop from 2-4 est. Stop in and say HI! www.groups.yahoo.com/groups/savannahchase

Chatting Tomorrow: Anne Rainey, Kelley Nyrae and I are chatting tomorrow at Joyfully Reviewed at noon. Chatting_with_Joyfully_Reviewed@yahoogroups.com


Darragha! said...

Reading green, in my opinion, is one of the small ways I can help protect natural resources. I love books. Love them. LOVE THEM. But I read mostly on my laptop or Palm. It's like cd's...we're all putting the music into our computers now/converting to MP3's and the cd's are "being put away."


Anne Rainey said...

I want a reader. What kind did you get, Regina? I'm hoping to ask for one for Christmas. What file types does yours take?

Great post! I'm hoping to see lots of advice from readers on which ereader to buy!

Phoenix said...

All the same reasons which prompted me to buy my ebook reader. And since then, I haul it out constantly to explain it to others. immersed in this industry, I find it very odd to meet so many people who have NEVER heard of an ebook.

Wendi said...

Hey, Regina! I have to agree, I love my ebookwise reader, too. (Thanks for turning me on to it a few months ago.) It's fantastic! And like Kelly, I'm always having to answer questions about it for people who've never even heard of an e-reader. I can't tell you how many people have gotten excited and said they couldn't wait to get one or buy one for their husband or mother or whoever.

And it does feel good to do something green. Now, if I can just remember to change out the rest of my lightbulbs....

Can't wait to chat with you later today at Savannah Chase's group! See you then!

Wendi Darlin

Minnette Meador said...

DH and I got rid of our gas gussling car this year, are recycling, and walking/biking to work (well, trying to most of the time). eBooks are also a great way to help. I have a Motorola cell that I can download books to and I read while I'm walking...people think I'm crazy, but hey, I wouldn't read if I didn't (too many deadlines and not enough hours in the day!) Great post! Go green, everyone! Minnette :)

Kelley Nyrae said...

Great topic, Regina. What an easy step toward going green. We're still feeding our reading addiction and saving so much paper.

J.K. Coi said...

Regina, like you I wasn't sure if I would like my reader, because I'm a hard-core book fan. But I LOVE it! It makes travelling with books so much easier. It makes buying books less expensive. The only trouble I thought I would find was being able to get my favourite NY authors in ebook format, but the books are there. (although for these you're still paying about $7-$8 per book, even in e-format)

The best part though, is that ebooks are cheaper. It's given me more freedom to try new authors that I may never have taken a chance on before, because the expense of books is prohibitive and I couldn't afford to put my money into something I wasn't sure about.

anny cook said...

I have a Sony digital reader. I love it. And like Kelly, I spend a lot of time explaining it. People are fascinated with it. I have all of my own books on it and when I demonstrate it, I let people read a couple pages of one of my stories... so you might say it's a two-for-one benefit.

Regina Carlysle said...

I can honestly say I've NEVER talked with anybody who doesn't LOVE reading this way once they've tried it.

Anne, mine (and Wendi's) is the e-bookwise reader. It's the cheapest one available but I have ZERO complaints. You can't read a pdf on this like you can with some of the other readers. I always by in html format. I download the html to my docs on the computer. THEN, I copy and paste it to an empty word doc then load it on the reader. It actually takes longer to type out the instructions than it does to actually DO it. LOL.

What's really cool is I can sit with the family while the lights are out and they are watching movies and I can read. You can also load personal documents too.

Check it out by going to ebookwise on your search engine.

Regina Carlysle said...

Hi Minnette! Glad you came by. We've gone all green on cars too. Of course, DH still has a boat to haul so we have a truck too but it's not used that often. I live in Texas...kinda rural, lots of ranchers, oil men, farmers and those guys have to have trucks. I feel for them. I really do. How expensive it's getting to fill them up!

Regina Carlysle said...

ACK...something else! We used to have a subscription to the Dallas Morning News and they quit delivering to our part of west Texas. I'm seriously thinking about gettin DH a Kindle for Christmas. It's actually a little wireless computer and he can subscribe to any newspaper or magazine in the world not to mention buy his Tom Clancy's and such. All on the Kindle. Isn't that just the coolest??? Only drawback now is the expense ($400) but I've noticed they must be selling. If you go to Amazon, nine times out of then, they are backordered.

Regina Carlysle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anne Rainey said...

I'd love to have the Kindle...man, those things are so awesome. But, yeah, very expensive still.

Cindy said...

Hey Regina,I just bought an e book reader a couple of weeks ago & I love it, but I also have to say, I don't see me giving up my paperbacks,I love to read in the tub,& I'd be scared to take my reader there with me.
Also just wanted to say,you three ladies are doing a great job on this blog,I love it.

Laura J. said...

I have an ebookwise reader too and isn't if fun to read in the dark? It's like being a kid trying to read under the covers with a flashlight.

I'll admit I wasn't too sure I would want an ereader. I love the feel and smell of a book. But once I broke down and bought one --I LOVE it. I still will buy some print books, but it is just so much easier to take my ereader along than it is to take a book and a bookmark. I tend to read at red lights and when the light turns green I sit it down. No fumbling with trying to put the bookmark in the book and then fumbling again to open the book and remove the bookmark at the next red light and no more loosing the bookmark on the floor board of the car and then the light turning green and having noting to mark my spot.

I finally convinced an avid paper book reader to buy one and now she can't put it down. Of course it's only fair because she's the one who got me hooked into reading again! *g*

Katie Reus said...

I wish I could say the real reason I got my Sony Reader was to help the environment, but I didn't. I got it b/c I love the accessibility of so many different books right at my fingertips, I love not having to wait for a shipment from Amazon, and more than anything, I love the compact size. I take my reader everywhere :)

Linda LaRoque said...

Hi Regina,

I love my ereader and it's perfect at night when the DH is trying to sleep.
Let me know what formats your daughter's blackberry will take. I also have a palm but can only upload pdb. or prc. formats.


Lisa Logan said...

Great post! I have a squidoo lens up about Green Writing (and reading) at http://squidoo.com/greenwriter that talks about this...and many more ways we can be "greener" in the book industry.

Right now I use my Palm for reading, but would love an e-reader.I've already starting researching which one I want to get. Woo hoo!

Fedora said...

I'm not an e-book convert yet--maybe once I get a good reader, but in the meantime, I'm still mostly a paperback reader... ;)

Regina Carlysle said...

Hey Cindy! Read your comment about reading in the tub. I haven't done that in awhile. I used to love it but once I dropped a brand new paperback and ruined it. DAMN. That was years ago. Haven't read in the tub since.

Glad you're liking the blog. Keep coming back...you KNOW we love to play.


Regina Carlysle said...

Hi flchen1!
Some day when you're out shopping go over to your local BEST BUY. Most of them are selling the Sony E-reader now. Hold it in your hand, ask questions. You might change your mind.

I didn't get to attend the ROmantic Times convention but I heard they were a HUGE HIT with the people who attended.

Regina Carlysle said...

Katie, you crack me up! LOL. You can WANT it AND be green. That's cool when you can kill two birds with one stone. I love it.

I also like the idea of not having to leave my house to get a book INSTANTLY. Talk about convenient!

Destiny Blaine said...

Hey Regina!

I must admit--I buy the format I can get my hands on first. If that means I'm in B&N and a book gains my attention, then I'll buy. More often than not, I'm on the computer so I tend to buy more and more e-books!

Great topic!
Destiny :))

Regina Carlysle said...

Thanks for coming by, Destiny. I think lots of people are that way. I mean, if you're at the mall and out and about then WHY NOT? What I do find interesting is when I DO hit a bookstore and do all kinds of impulse buying, I'll get home and see the same stuff cheaper and want to kick my own ass. Almost always happens.

Personally, I don't really think ebooks will EVER completely overshadow print books but why can't they co-exist?

Amy said...

Hi Regina - I have to add my two cents (or with the way prices on everything are going up, maybe it will be five cents) worth on ebook readers. I have arthritis in my hands, and when I had joint replacement surgery on my thumb a few years ago I bought a Franklin eBookman because I knew I'd go crazy if I couldn't read for weeks - and it was 5 weeks in a cast not using that hand AT ALL! I had to have a device small enough to hold comfortably in one hand for long periods of time, as well as be able to "turn pages" with that same hand. It was great while it lasted, but it physically broke from overuse.

I now have a Palm T/X and love it. I can read PDF (my least favorite format), Mobipocket PRC, HTML, and Word DOC or RTF. All you have to do is download free software for most of these formats to be able to read them on a Palm OS device. My Palm came with a mobile version of Office, which allows you to store, read, and WRITE to Word and Excel documents, and then sync to your computer. Yes, the screen is small, but for the size, the T/X has the largest screen of any similar device that I have found. I can also play music (MP3s)on it again with free software, games, and access the internet (WiFi or Bluetooth).

It fits easily in my purse, which is pretty small. No carrying a ton of books when I travel, and no need to buy more bookshelves for my home. Back-lighting is awesome, too!

Do I still buy paperbacks? Oh, yeah! I'm an addict and I don't think I spend any less on reading material because I read mostly ebooks - I just get to buy/read MORE for the same amount of money.

Want to Read Green and Give Back? Check out Resplendence Publishing's special 15% discount offer plus benefit the Arbor Day Foundation with your purchase through June 30.