In today’s world, authors are getting the short end of the stick. EBook writer? Even more so. Think about all the pros and cons of being an EBook writer. If someone is a fan of your work and comes up to you, you can’t really say, “Oh, let me autograph it for you.’ But you can’t. I’m a huge bookworm and to me, an eBook really can’t replace the magic and attraction of the pages of a book. I could go on and on. But I can understand why the world is moving more towards EBooks.
When I used to travel, I used to always carry a book with me – the bigger, the better. I’m quite a speed reader so if I had a long journey ahead of me, I didn’t want to run out of content to read halfway through my journey. This meant that in addition to the amount of luggage I was carrying, I also had to lug around a big, fat book. To me, nothing can replace an actual physical book. I love turning the pages and being engrossed in the contents of the novel. However, being someone who is a voracious reader, it’s no easy task carrying around books as they add precious weight to your luggage.
A kindle on the other hand, can store thousands of books and you only have to deal with the weight of the kindle or the eBook reader which is negligible. Now travelers can read to their hearts content while on route to their destinations, without looking like they’re a traveling library.
As an eBook writer, there are certain disadvantages. The concept of an eBook is still relatively new – there is a slight concern that people may not view eBook writers as actual authors in the real sense as we can’t see it in our shelves. Piracy is another issue. With physical books, authors and publishers need to safeguard themselves from cheap prints produced in dubious places which are then sold for small amounts, cutting out the publishers as well as the authors themselves out of the picture. In the case of eBooks, authors have no way of controlling online pirates who start offering the eBooks for free on various websites just barely a few days after the book is released.
The concept of the eBook is also an innovative concept as an eBook is usually a convenient length which could be a fifth of the traditional book which makes it an easy read for a flight or a train journey. They are also priced a lot lower than actual books. This leads to bigger sales for eBook writers. Where the authors are losing out on are the royalties. They often get only 25% or even less by the big publishing houses while they take the rest. There seems to be no fairness in that, especially in the eBook business, where publishing, storage and more is redundant.
There needs to be a net book agreement that will help the eBook authors to get better deals and contracts. At the moment the average author barely manages to earn the bare minimum wage, let alone eBook writers. With a major monopoly taking place from online players like Amazon, the publishing houses will be facing intense pressure, but not enough that the authors can’t get a better deal on their eBook sales.
The world will certainly become drearier if the creative people who bring us the magic in various publications have to get another job just so that they can squeeze in a few words of writing before dinner. Creativity will die out and we will be left with poor quality, shoddy works.