Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Bad Things About Living in Wilderness...

A power failure took out thousands of homes last night, and even when the power returned, my Internet service did not.  I was going to buy a Kindle last night to see if gray scaling these pictures improved how they looked, but that was a complete loss of an evening.  I hate to spend the money, partly because I am cheap, and partly because I am not thrilled with the Kindle's user interface.  If only there were a Kindle rental shop--a place you could rent one for a few weeks for a fraction of the cost of buying one.  But I can see why that might not work, and perhaps I just need to bite the bullet and buy one--I expect to do more books this way.

UPDATE: One reader suggested buying a Nook instead (which is a more open platform, sold by Barnes & Noble).  I may well do that.  I am not buying the Kindle because I prefer reading books that way--I do not--but because I need it to verify the final version that I put up on the Kindle site.  I suspect that I will probably only write books in this format in the future, since increasingly, it appears that to get a book published by a trade publisher it better be in one of the following categories:

1. You are nationally famous or infamous.

2. It is "soon to be made into a major Hollywood movie."

3. It has a gay theme.  Seriously: when I was out looking for an agent, I was surprised at how many agents were really interested in books with a gay theme.  My agent tells me that yes, indeed, it is because gay people read and buy books in numbers greatly disproportionate to their numbers.  I already know that books about gun history certainly aren't a way to sell books!


  1. Then don't buy a Kindle. Buy a Nook instead.

    Nook supports non-proprietary formats (.epub, .pdf). I can transfer non-B&N ebooks to the Nook. B&N has never deleted purchased books from users' devices.

  2. Funny, there's an ad for Kindle on Amazon just to the right of the post. I've been interested in some kind of E reader myself. I may have to borrow from a few friends to find the type I like.

  3. Get the Kindle appfor your computer. It should be pretty close to how the real Kindle looks, no?

  4. The Kindle for PC app is close, but not identical. There are minor formatting differences, such as indenting on block quotes, that are not the same.

  5. mariner: Conversion tools or jailbreak hacks let a Kindle do that, too.

    If Clayton wants to see how his book looks on a Kindle, he kinda needs an actual Kindle available.

    (Me, I've never seen a need for ePub or PDF on mine, but YMMV.

    Certainly in the eBook realm, I've never had a problem finding Mobi or .prc files which the Kindle reads natively.

    In practice, MobiPocket is "open" enough as a format.

    Not that there's anything wrong with the new Nook [unless you need non-Wifi networking], mind. The touchscreen eInk display is clearly The Way Of The Future.)

  6. Oh, also, Clayton - consider a used Kindle?

    Local pawn or used-electronics shops, or eBay, should provide a significant discount over New.

    I see a $75 Kindle 2 on eBay right now, in fact (as well as a lot of ridiculously overpriced ones...)

    For your "testing my books" need, it should be perfectly adequate and then some; the display on the 2 and the 3 is basically identical.

  7. I looked at buying a used one on eBay, but it looked like only about $50 savings at most over buying new, and then there is the time issue. I should have my new one on Monday. I am interested in getting this book ready and available for sale by mid-August--no room for delay.

    From what I have read, the Kindle 3 has more levels of gray available--of some importance when you include pictures.