Thursday, 3 March 2011
eRevolution? Or just Evolution?
I was pointed in the direction of an article yesterday that has made me think long and hard about this writing 'lark'. Then today I came across this
Writers invest a lot of time and effort crafting and refining their stories - but that's merely the start of the hard work. Next, you have to attract the attention of an agent/publisher and convince them that you're the next best thing since sliced bread. Rejection slips pile up and can be very demoralising, especially when there is no hint of constructive criticism to aid your attempts to improve your chances of getting that elusive publishing deal.
In light of that, is electronic self-publishing really to be dismissed so easily? And if it is the way to go, what does the future hold for traditional publishing methods?
On the one hand - yes, it's a way to get the 'work' out there and being read (and potentially earning money!!!) but on the other hand, is there a danger that this could ultimately lead to the demise of actual hold-in-your-hand-paper-and-print books?
.......and (playing Devil's Advocate, here) should that be a problem, really?
When you consider that books (as we know them, mass produced since the invention of the printing press) have been virtually the only form of portable written word for so long is it truly unthinkable that they may at some stage eventually become obsolete? Imagine the possibility that they could become 'collectors items' or only for 'enthusiasts? It'll never happen.....or will it?
Within 'my' lifetime reel-to-reel tape recorders and vinyl records have been superseded first by cassettes and now Cd's, which themselves are becoming replaced by download files and iPods. VHS has become obsolete in favour of DVD/BlueRay. Anologue broadcasting has become digital. It's called the march of progress.
'Books' have had it good for so long - is this 'eRevolution' really just evolution?
The bottom line is - if more people are likely to read via electronic means than by purchasing hardcopies (books) or borrowing from a library, should we be embracing technology in order to introduce people to the written word?
Most of us write to be 'read' (and we'd like to be paid for our talents!) but having to wait upon the whims of agents and publishers it can be tempting to 'go it alone' and get into electronic publishing.
I'm still undecided - yet, it would seem, for a lucky number of self-publishers the numbers do seem to stack up!