Amazon announced today that for every 100 print books it sells, it now sells 105 ebooks.
In other words, the ebook “train” has left the station. There is no going back.
As someone with a few thousand old-fashioned print books lining the walls of his house, the success of ebooks is bittersweet. The paperbacks sitting on my bookshelf are not just books but souvenirs; they remind me of where I was when I bought those books, what I was thinking (or not thinking), where I was living. The books themselves are bookmarks of my life.
On a Kindle, a book is, well, largely just a book. But perhaps it is I who is old-fashioned and not the books themselves.
That said, I love ebooks and the opportunities they provide. Ebooks (and Amazon) have provided upstart authors and publishers with amazing opportunities. There has been a changing of the guard among the former gatekeepers.
As publishers, we view ebooks as equally as important as print books. Our goal is simply to get the author’s work into as many bookstores and reading devices as possible. If you have a Kindle, a Nook, a Kobo, an iPad — we’ll be there. If you’re a library, we can be there in either print or digital format. And if you’re a bookstore, we’ll be there in all our paper glory, for those readers who, like us, want books as well as mementoes.