Periodically, I like to check in with you all to see how (and if) your reading habits have changed. What you like, don’t like, etc., and a few other questions. The publishing industry is undergoing such huge changes, the answers you might have given two years ago may very well be obsolete.
I know it’s changed for me. I almost never buy mass market anymore; I almost always now either buy for the Kindle (which I read on my iPad), or if I buy a physical copy, I’ll opt for the hardcover version, because I’ll only go to that expense if it’s something I want to keep or it’s something strictly reliant on the illustrations (like several of my design books I’ve been snapping up). This has radically changed for me over just a year ago, when I first got the Kindle, and then the iPad. (My brother, an avid reader of books, who never thought he’d like an e-reader, inherited my Kindle and now loves it.)
I hadn’t realized just how much I’d gotten accustomed to reading on the iPad until I picked up a design book the other day and I glanced around for the button to enlarge the text. 🙁
On the one hand, I miss books. I miss the experience of walking into a bookstore and browsing the fiction aisles; I just don’t do it as much anymore because delivery to the e-reader is instant gratification. Plus, I like having the ability to put in keywords in the search feature and “browse” other titles, even reading first chapters, all from the comfort of being in my pjs in front of the computer. Still… I miss the physical delight of a book, the feeling that I’m holding a treasure, an adventure, that I somehow own and am a part of that adventure by having this secret talisman in hand. I love, still, the smell of books, the heft of the weight of the story in my hand, the eye-candy of all the covers filling the shelves, like a million slices of mouth-watering desserts, just waiting for me. There is a sense of awe that I get whenever I walk into a bookstore or library. It’s still almost like church; inspiring, intimidating, awesome.
I tend to find more of what I’m looking for, faster, online. I can get things immediately, whenever the mood strikes. I can carry thousands of books with me, wherever I go, so if my mood changes, or I finish one thing, I instantly have the next thing right there at the touch of a button. Lots and lots of books that are delightful can “stay” on my shelves, even if they’re not necessarily “keeper” books–books that maybe changed my life or how I viewed something. Because seriously, I ran out of space on the bookshelves years ago, and have constantly traded out the ones that were fun-but-not-necessarily keepers. This way? I get to keep them allllllllll.
So how about you? Here are a few questions I’m curious about–no need to feel like you have to answer every one, but if you want to, that’d be great.
1) How do you read now? physical book / ebook?
2) If physical book, what do you tend to buy? mass market? trade paperback? hardcover?
3) Has how you read now changed from last year? or were you an early adopter on the ereader train?
4) If you’re searching for something to read online (without having something specific in mind), do you search… by keyword? author? genre? Do you look at those “people who bought [the book you just bought or looked at] also bought [some recommendation]? Do reviews influence you? (bigger # of reviews helps? higher reviews helps? or do you ignore them?)
5) For an ereader, if an ebook has links embedded (whether it’s to the author’s website or his/her other books), do you follow the links? What if you could find additional material online, like… an alternate ending? or a whole world of photos/recipes/”shops”? Would you go?
6) What’s the best book you’ve read in the last couple of months?
That’s it — thank you for answering!