Charlotte Collinse-booksKindle

1,000,000,000 vs 1,000

Spawn of the Devil?
Nah. It’s just the Amazon Kindle DX.
Photo from Amazon.com.

According to a press release from Amazon.com Stieg Larsson is the first author to sell 1,000,000,000 e-books. Sure puts my goal of selling 1,000 copies of Charlotte Collins into perspective. And it puts into perspective the growing importance of the e-book as a real medium.

The publishing industry has gone into hysterics over e-books. Frankly, I love watching it, but I think the panic has been overblown. E-books are an opportunity, and publishers that are willing to adapt will do great. The problem seems to be that, as is human nature, they don’t want to change. They want to keep pushing $25 hardcovers, and these pesky $10 e-versions are taking marketshare.

Then, there are the fatalists who have been telling me that pretty soon there will be no paper books. Everyone will be reading e-books. And the whole literary world will collapse and go immediately to the lowest circle of hell. Hardly. People will choose the medium they prefer. Choice is good.

The changes in the publishing world are exciting. They open opportunities for small press and independent publishers who might not have been able to afford to take the financial risk in the old publishing climate. They can choose print on demand, e-books, vanity presses, or the traditional route. And I think this is the time to jump in. At least, I hope it is.

Wait, I hear what you’re saying to the screen right now. But that means the quality of books will go down, and we’ll have to sift through rotton garbage to get to the good meat. I’m sorry to point this out, but we’ve been doing this already. I marvel at the dreck that is published by traditional publishers. I’ve actually thrown away quite a few books that I deemed too horrible to be read by anyone. (I won’t say which ones they were, but some are bestsellers.) And we have this glorious internet where average readers get to review whatever they want. The reader will let you know what’s good.

Incidentally, Charlotte Collins will be available on paper AND as an e-book that can be read on your e-reader, PC, Mac, iPad, iPod Touch, Blackberry, Android phone, and iPhone.

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