This question haunts me as I struggle to create time so that I can work on my novel — to finally finish. It has been seven years since the original seed of an idea started to grow in my imagination, slowly being transferred from my head onto paper. And even as the finish line grows closer, I nervously type in a race to beat the progression of technology. Will I be too late? By the time I’m done will I be banished to an e-reader existence? Will all the book stores be barred as print grows less relevant?
I know that this worry is probably a bit premature. Although as more consumers buy e-readers they also buy more ebooks (at a much cheaper price), books are not disappearing quite yet. And hell, I don’t even know if I’ll get published. But the thing is, I love books. I don’t just love reading stories from them, I love the feel of them, the history, the whole concept. I can flip to the last page easily if I want and sneak a glance at the ending, or read the blurb on the back of the book as many times as I want. With a book in my hand, I’m me. And in my vision, which includes getting my book published, there is a space on my bookshelves designated for my very own work of written art, or so I hope. So I am irrationally anxious to complete my novel before time runs out and books are relegated to the true lovers and collectors.
I once refused to even touch an e-reader, afraid that if I succumbed it would mean one less person supporting printed books. But with so many self-published authors publishing to e-readers, I felt it wasn’t fair to the authors, nor to myself; I could be missing out on something truly worthy. So my new policy is I only read e-books if they haven’t been published to print.
But I still worry irrationally about the viability of print and so continue to work toward that perfect story ending. And I’m hoping by December my rough draft will finally be complete. On that day, I will feel so much closer to seeing my dream realized and beating the imminent digitization of literature.