Electronic vs Printed Novels

The camera obscura, has been documented as far back as Aristotle (384 to 322 BCE). If I remember my art history correctly, during the Italian Renaissance, of the 14th & 16th centuries, it was believed that the camera would replace all art, such as painting and drawing. It never happened. The spirit of creativity is too strong.

There maybe billions of photographs out there, but there are just as many paintings and drawings from refrigerator art to museums pieces.

When Kendal first came out, the demise of the printed page was foretold. I think not..

Independent Book Publishing Association April issue of their magazine the  “Independent” had an article about electronic books. Of course that’s the issue I’ve misplaced so I can’t give you exact figures.

Sales shoot up the first few years when the electronic books first came out causing printed book sales to drop. It truly did look like one was taking over the other. It was only a matter of time before publishers stopped printing books. But according to the article in “Independent,” sales for electronic books have leaved off. The printed page is not going away.

It seems, after reading a book on Kindle or Nook, people will buy their favorite book in print. Professional book reviewers prefer a printed gallery copy. Reading on a screen tires their eyes.

Publishers now publish books electronically along side paper copies, but the print is still the bigger sale.

The library now offers downloadable books. One can choose to have the book for seven, fourteen or twenty-one days. If not renewed, the book will disappear. No more late fees because one forgot to return the book.

I thought this is the way of the library. I would eventually have buy a Kindle or Nook, but the librarian says no. The electronic system is not in as much use as one would think. People still prefer to come into the library and browse the shelves. One of the busies places in town on a Sunday afternoon is the library.

I’ve never walked into an empty bookstore. No matter what the time of day, I usually have to wait inline for at least a few minutes while someone buys a book or two, or three.

And if that’s not enough proof that the printed book is here to stay …

In the year 2364, Jean-Luc Picard, captain of the Enterprise of the Next Generation, will still be retiring to his private quarters to “turn the pages of a good book.”

So there, the printed book is still live and well, at least for the next 300 years.


Just to be clear, I’m not predicting the demise of e-books, they are here to stay. I’m saying p-books are also here to stay.