Fear in Writing: I see the future, and it's Digital

Today in Literary History

Today in Literary History...December 14, 1907: Rudyard Kipling receives the Nobel prize for literature, the first English-language writer to do so.ud

Monday, April 19, 2010

I see the future, and it's Digital

This post is influenced by Helen, who looks into the future here.

I don't own a Nook or and iPad (though I saw two iPads just this morning at Starbucks) or even a Kindle, but I see it as the future and I am coming around. As for marketing, it is incredibly nice and easy to get the word out via digital media. With streaming video, blogs, Twitter, etc., PR can be done from an author's home, or favorite coffee shop! We should embrace this aspect.

But we also should not forget from whence we came.  I have touched on this subject before in TravelBlog, where I took you on a tour of my then-blog layout, and explained the purpose of my 'Today in Literary History' section.  Here is what I said then, and still believe:
You'll find this just above the latest post, taking prominence beneath the banner. I believe we are formed by those who came before us, be it Edgar Allan Poe, Jane Austen or James Patterson. This connection with history is important, so I strive to etch a bit of the past into your daily blog-hopping.
So embrace the future.  Go digital and electronic and paperless to your heart's content.  But don't forget Guttenburg and Dante and Hans Christian Anderson.  The pen and the paper will always be the greatest connection a writer can have with their work.

FYI: I will no longer be posting on Saturdays.  It's my family day and the posts I put up those days aren't worth much anyway.  So, taking Sat. off!


  1. I long for an e-reader, but I like my paper too much. I can see the e-reader doing great things for the short story market.

  2. I will be slow to adapt to digital formats, but there seems to be a lot of potential to create a whole book experience (links, music, pics, etc).

    I just hope there are safeguards so works are not pirated.

  3. As the owner of an iPad, I couldn't agree more. And I think the iPad will do more than any other eReading device, as it's so much more. Being able to connect to the Internet while away from my computer is an awesome thing!

  4. Great reminder! I'd love to have some kind of e-reader, but I could never give up my paper versions! :-)

  5. I think I will be purchasing an e-reader this year. They're not going anywhere, and to be an effective writer in the 21st century I want to be up-to-date with every way my work can be offered!

  6. One of my favorite benefits from my Kindle is how it reintroduced me to the books of the past. The collections of authors such as Jules Verne, H.G. Wells, Mark Twain, and countless others are available to read for just a few dollars or less. I recently bought the entire 15 Wizard of Oz books that were written by L. Frank Baum for 95cents. Try doing that in print. Try carrying all of them in your pocket. Imagine every book forever available to read. No more out of print. No more forgotten writers. Thanks to e-books I have discovered many out of print writers such as Stephen Leacock, Norbert Davis and Ross Thomas. Because of the prices I have tried writers I never would have risk money to sample before such as Kage Baker, Tim Maleeny and Donald Westlake. I have been able to find the books of my favorite (now forgotten by others) authors such as Craig Rice that exist only in the e-bookstore or some unknown used bookstore.

    Forget Hans Christian Anderson? How can I? When I have his "The Ice-Maiden and Other Tales" on my Kindle (the other tales are "The Butterfly", "The Psyche", and "The Snail and the Rose-Tree").

  7. I am so glad all of you enjoyed the reminder...I'm with Alex, I think the iPad is going to make a big difference. I hope to purchase the next generation--or at least a bit further into production.

    Michael- You make some great points here. I love that you have all of those classic and forgotten authors on you Kindle. I'm getting to the point where I'd be okay reading from an eReader, if only to have more books at my fingertips!

  8. I haven't embraced digital as a reader, but I'm definitely embracing it as an author. I don't have a choice! :) The publishers are putting them out digitally. I'm promoting digitally, so I'm working on leaving the past behind...

    Mystery Writing is Murder