Thursday, October 8, 2015

Thursday Thoughts...

“Books: a beautifully browsable invention that needs no electricity and exists in a readable form no matter what happens.” 

Nicholson Baker

I often times find the debates about audio books, e-books and print books fascinating.  I think all book formats have their place; and that each of us will have our preferences.  And sometimes our preference simply applies to the context in which we find ourselves.

In my heart, I love a print book. I love to hold a book in the hand, and I love all of the things that a print book encompasses.  But then, I do love an e-book when I travel so I don't have to lug several extra kilos of luggage with me!

Even with my love of the print book, I found this quote a bit tricky.  Clearly a huge bonus of a print book is that the battery won't run out - which happens for both audio and e-books; but then you can't read a print book in the dark can you without some form of external lighting; whereas the e-book comes with its own; and the audio book needs no light at all.

And probably mostly because I am a book artist and have seen many books made and created that are in print form yet can't be read, made me disagree somewhat that they exist "in a readable form no matter what happens".


A book called Dark is Hard, with previous ramblings here.


  1. have a look at Judy Martin's work in progress, binding all her old journals into beautiful blocks of time

    1. Amazing Mo - hers are more beautiful than mine; but the notion is hauntingly familiar. Even her comment re maybe being the first step towards burning! I would prefer to see her keep them and have them on a shelf, bundling blocks of time...

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks Sue - it has a tough history, but worked out well...

  3. It's a provocative quote, and I find it interesting to read your thoughts on it, Fiona, especially knowing that you are so much more than a reader when it comes to the subject of books. I think it just comes down to - as you say - well as personal preference/sense of 'comfort'. I still can't get excited about the idea of reading on a device - not enough to have even tried, I must admit, as the physical experience of turning pages/feeling their texture, size, weight, how far I've come & how much remains/etc. is so much a part of reading for me. Yet the books I am currently writing will likely be "distributed" as e-books because that is where the market seems to be ever-headed these days. I suppose the mains things here are that writers/artists can continue to have a means through which to express themselves, and that readers have a way to access those thoughts/words/images.
    Here's to books - in all of their forms!

    1. It's an ongoing and intriguing debate isn't it Lisa? and each of us has preferences for different ways, but I think you have captured the most important aspect - ensuring there are ways for writers to have a means of expression; and of readers to have a way of reading...I would be so sad to never hold another book in my hand; but would hate to think I was denied all the good new stories because they are all e-. Hopefully the two shall continue to combine and we adapt!


I appreciate your thoughts and comments; thanks for taking the time.