Thursday, January 10, 2013

 

How Do You Buy Books?

LuAnn and her grandsons, reading together. A daily habit.
Now, that may seem like a strange question, but I'm curious about book buying habits.

Publishers Weekly reports mass market paperback sales decreased in unit sales by more than 20 percent. But it's not just fiction that's taking a hit.

Adult non-fiction book sales fell by 13 percent.

In past years, I've purchased anywhere from 50 to 100 books. Sometimes, more, depending on time commitments and extra spending money.

But in 2012, I only purchased 20 books in various genres.

And that makes me wonder: What changed my book buying habits?

Yes, with writing deadlines, school obligations, and family matters, I didn't feel I had as much time to devote to reading in 2012.

But for me, my Kindle may be the culprit. I downloaded close to 200 books last year. Now, I'm not saying I've had the chance to read all of them yet...but they are there, like a trusted friend, when I find myself awake at 2:17 AM, unable to sleep.

Have your book buying habits changed? If so, what's the reason?

by LuAnn Schindler (photo of LuAnn and her grandsons reading, snapped by LuAnn, too)  Read more of her work, including her weekly newspaper column, Nebraska-isms, at her website

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11 Comments:

Blogger Sheila Siler said...

I think my Kindle and my Nook have definitely made a difference in my buying habits. It's too easy to download free books to try new authors.

4:44 AM  
Blogger Monette@MCSquaredonline.com said...

This is why I have avoided e-readers. Not that I don't get the appeal, but because I am so in love with the feel of a book in my hand, I can't imagine a world without them. I feel a (probably overzealous) sense of responsibility to do my part to keep printed books alive, so I buy lots—probably 100 last year. I stash them in different spots—my car, my yoga room, my bathroom, my nightstand, etc. At any given time, I may be in the midst of reading a dozen or so books. When they are read, they are shelved in my library where the sight of them continues to make me happy.

Thanks for posing the question. I look forward to seeing how other writers buy their books!

11:24 AM  
Blogger Monette@MCSquaredonline.com said...

This is why I have avoided e-readers. Not that I don't get the appeal, but because I am so in love with the feel of a book in my hand, I can't imagine a world without them. I feel a (probably overzealous) sense of responsibility to do my part to keep printed books alive, so I buy lots—probably 100 last year. I stash them in different spots—my car, my yoga room, my bathroom, my nightstand, etc. At any given time, I may be in the midst of reading a dozen or so books. When they are read, they are shelved in my library where the sight of them continues to make me happy.

Thanks for posing the question. I look forward to seeing how other writers buy their books!

11:25 AM  
Blogger MP said...

I so releate to what Monette said: "I am so in love with the feel of a book in my hand, I can't imagine a world without them." That said, my younger daughter really enjoys her Kindle. She loves real books too, so it hasn't dampened that passion.

There's an interesting (short) WSJ article on topic at http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323874204578219563353697002.html. It's called Don't Burn Your Books—Print Is Here to Stay. The tag line is: The e-book had its moment, but sales are slowing. Readers still want to turn those crisp, bound pages. Yay!

12:43 PM  
Blogger Margo Dill said...

This may be odd but I read at night in bed a lot and I don't like reading my e-reader in bed. I like reading a book in bed. I think it's something about the light?

1:04 PM  
Blogger Angela Ackerman said...

I find I am paying more attention to the bestseller categories. I never used to, but now as an author, I understand better how sales contribute to a book's rank and that it means many people are buying it.

I still have my #1, and that is word of mouth. hen someone tells me, "You have to read this!" I'll buy it.

As for ebook or print, now that there is a choice, I am attracted to the better cost of ebooks, and the fact that it's so portable. But I would rather read paper if that makes sense. And I still buy paper for anything nonfiction, like writing craft books.

Angela Ackerman

1:18 PM  
Blogger Sioux said...

I LOVE the feel of a book in my hands. And there are books by my favorite authors that I still do buy the print version. However, I do have an ebook reader, and when I travel, there is nothing better than having unlimited books at my disposal. Too often--in the past--I would load up a bag of books, only to find that I was in the mood to read something completely different. With an ebook, I can get any book I want anytime.

2:58 PM  
Blogger Susan L. Doyle said...

I still buy books of authors that I am collecting. I am using the library more. And yes, using ebooks.

4:26 PM  
Blogger Joyce Godwin Grubbs said...

To be honest, as an author I believe the "culprit" (and I don't think there is just one) is that big companies like Amazon chose to "dump" thousands of free reads of books, to the point that my own daughter (now in her forties) who has read nightly since high school, can download free books of all genres until "hell freezes over" and never pay or buy again.

For me the glutted market is not a positive or negative, but an observation based on techno advances and marketing that large online companies are employing.

I saw a drop in my sales in 2012 but then with 12 books and turning 70 next month, I can only "report" not fix it so, here it is; the "whole ball of wax". Just remember we who are "true its in my blood writers" won't be shaken or changed by these events. We'll just keep writing.....and writing.....and writ...........

1:34 AM  
Blogger Stephanie Cracknell said...

It depends on the type of book, and its availability. I prefer to purchase most for my kindle, however I prefer to be able to touch most of my cookbooks and have most of them in print.

I love the flexibility to be on holiday somewhere or on the train and to be able to download a book to read.

6:08 AM  
Blogger Mary Anne Benedetto said...

When the first Kindle appeared on the market, my husband told me he was buying one for me. I said, "Don't even bother. I like to linger over viewing covers of books, and like to hold them in my hands. Electronic reading is not for me!" A couple of years later, we were preparing for a two week vacation, and I was almost panic-stricken. How would I transport my current reading material collection without my luggage being overweight? That was when I bought an e-reader and never looked back; however, I still like to buy print books of local authors whom I have met, and I love to give print books as gifts. I truly believe there is ample room for both the print and electronic formats to co-exist!

11:09 AM  

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