I’m late writing about this. Everyone probably already knows Borders is closing, right? And while anyone who’s been paying attention the last couple of years probably isn’t shocked, it’s disappointing nonetheless.
I have a tiny indy bookstore near me I like to frequent, but sometimes I just like to go and lose myself in a big bookstore where I can physically browse a lot of books. Touch is actually quite important to my book-buying experience. I loved that I could buy a coffee or chai tea, sit in a comfy chair, and go through a stack of books trying to make up my mind which ones I wanted to buy. The comfort. The familiarity. I will miss it.
The cautionary tale of a big corporation failing to jump on the newest industry bandwagon and, therefore, losing customers and declining into bankruptcy is, perhaps, oversimplified. But it’s also an interesting commentary on our lightning-fast consumer society. Who knows what the next big fad will be? How does one judge the qualities that turn a fad into a standard? Bet the honchos at Borders wish they knew.
As a writer (not just as a reader), I’ve been watching the Borders scenario and wondering how this will effect my future career. I’ve blogged before about my love for actual, physical books. But I’ve begun to realize that ebooks shouldn’t be dismissed out of hand.
There’s a smokin’ hot discussion going on amongst writers and others in the publishing community regarding ebooks and whether or not it makes more sense to by-pass traditional publishing and go right for self-publishing to ebooks. See this for the LA Times article on John Locke, the indy author who sold 1 million ebooks on Amazon and here for author J.A. Konrath’s take on all this.
I’ve decided to keep my eyes and ears open on all the new publishing developments, but, for now, I have a novel to finish.
As a reader, I guess I will just have to drive a bit further for my big bookstore experience and get used to a new place. It would be awesome if they have comfy chairs, too.
How do you feel about Borders closing? How about ebooks and self-publishing?