originally posted by Clansman

Sounds like they are trying to do it right, so good for them. It would not be good for this series to have a sub-standard e-publication.

Had enough publication problems to date, eh?

Word came back from Reading-Fox at LT that Traitor's Knot, and also, To Ride Hell's Chasm are now available in e book format. (Found at Waterstones).

originally posted by Chirogeoff

Hi all. I just tried to buy an e-book version of Peril's Gate from Harper Collins. They said that it was only available to people in the UK due to author/publisher restrictions and could/would not tell me where I might get one seeing as I am in Australia. I presume they are trying to sell distribution rights in Australia. Any suggestions? I've got all the hard copy but it looks just a little unprofessional to have them on my desk at work so I'd like to have them on my computer.

Oh, I don't post very often so I'll just throw in an:

I LOVE your work Janny!

A very frustrated Geoff

originally posted by Kevin Lenth

Geoff – if you don't mind being locked into Amazon.com's format, I think you should be able to buy the Kindle version. They recently released a free PC application (Google "Amazon Kindle PC" to find it) for reading Kindle books, and I have to say it seems to work rather well.

– Kevin L., local Kindle pusher

originally posted by Theresa

Kevin - I had to check this out, and I see there's a Mac version coming soon for us Mac users. Awesome! Kindle books everywhere… on the Kindle, the iPhone and soon the MacBook. Thanks for mentioning the PC app!

Gee, maybe I should install the PC version on my work computer. Oh, the temptation…

Theresa, another Kindle pusher. :smiley:

Now, I want to see what the MacBook does…curious, yes. Still hate the idea of reading tied up to batteries, though.

originally posted by Chirogeoff

Kevin, Thanks. I had seen the Amazon/Kindle version and hadn't gone with it because it was slightly dearer than HarperCollins UK or Waterstones. I assumed, perhaps incorrectly, that if there were territorial restrictions for HarperCollins they would also apply to Waterstones and Kindle. I'll have to check it out.

Janny, I too am uncomfortable with the idea of reading restricted by batteries, but the idea of having so many of my favourite books so portable and accessible…I love it. I wouldn't fit all of my books on a Kindle though.

It's "save a tree" vs "cut down a mountain" for coal powered electric, at the moment (forests for paper are FAR better, ecologically, than selling them off for development)…and electronic trash disposal is horrific…but, the idea of being able to write on the road and have ALL the back books at hand to ref, where I could never haul the desk copies…that beckons.

They charge too much for the devices and the e books, in my opinion.

originally posted by Derek Coventry

You can buy clockwork radios and wind up torches. Perhaps some enterprising company will adapt this principle to Ebooks.

originally posted by Chirogeoff

I like the idea of someone powering their TV with an exercise bike or something but I think that reading should be a more peaceful activity.

Derek Coventry - I'd like that in principle…I'd still shudder to pack a reading device on a sailboat…saw a post somewhere about someone who spilled coffee on one and wound up with a 300 dollar paperweight.

But portable cd players used to cost bundles. Now, you can get one for 29 bucks. I shudder at the electronic waste, however.

originally posted by Clansman

There was a recent Fifth Estate program on CBC (in Canada), sort of like 60 Minutes in the States (before CBS turned half of its program into infotainment) about electronic waste. Supposedly, it is to be completely recycled, but…

What happens is that unscrupulous "recyclers" sell it to places like China, where it is taken to the poorest areas, and where the people doing the recycling are handling mercury and lead and arsenic, burning plastics in order to extract the valuable materials, and dumping the slag right along side shanty towns. When the /i{Fifth Estate} went to China to film it, a gang of thugs kicked them out of the dump area, actually breaking the camera man's arm. These disposal sites are apparently run by organized crime gangs, exploiting the poorest of the poor.

Until electronic waste is adequately dealt with, I'll stick with paper, thank you very much. There is much more sustainable forestry happening now (with ample room for improvement, to be sure), and that resource is completely renewable, in time. The mining, toxic heavy metals and petrochemicals needed to make book readers and Ipods are not renewable, and take much more energy to produce and maintain.

Book reading devices do not appear to sit well with the Law of the Major Balance, whereas sustainable forestry and low or non-effluent paper production has a much better chance of doing so.

Just my two cents.

originally posted by Phome

I'm very glad to see this debate taking place, since I study (do research on) and teach sustainability in business schools. The truth is that there is no perfect solution, unfortunately. There are problems with paper and there are problems with electronics. The difficulty is governance and having oversight over what actually goes on. We don't truly know what companies are doing, in the end. I have no answer about whether books or electronics are better. From a personal point of view, it seems that at least books are biodegradable, though the production process of making paper is dirty, and inks are even worse. My sense is that electronics are just as bad if not worse, with needing to use so many toxic chemicals that become part of our water system.

In the end, it's a difficult choice either way. I happen to like the feel and smell of books, and I like being able to leaf through them, write in them, mark pages and paragraphs. There is something very tangible about such a physical process. Somehow, I get much more emotionally involved when I have a physical source. As a result, I end up printing many of the articles that I have to read for work, but try to print 4 pages to a sheet of paper (double sided of course). I wish there was a better way … perhaps we can invent our own magical solutions in the future.

originally posted by Phome

To add to my last post, if anyone is interested, here is a life cycle analysis done in 2003 that compares printed books to e-book: (link removed)

originally posted by Phome

And a more recent study here: (link removed)

Both seem to suggest that ebooks are more environmentally friendly than printed books.

Sorry to bombard this across several posts. I should have done it all in one.

originally posted by Derek Coventry

I see all the advantages for using electronic devices for reading and writing, but personally I like everything backed up on paper. I have never had full trust in electronic storage which is amusing when you consider my profession is in electronic engineering.

originally posted by Kirsten Laurelle Wallace

I'd have to agree with Derek. I find it less enjoyable to read off of a computer screen. Even with my own writing I prefer to revise in printed format and then enter the revisions into the program when I'm done. I wonder if the next generation will feel differently. Maybe my preference for printed materials has more to do with habit than anything else. :smiley:

All you Carolyn Cherryh, Jane Fanchur and Lynn Abbey readers - they have announced the opening of Closed Circle, their self-run site for e books - apparently there will be choices: the verbatim editions you once bought as books OR a choice of the author's revised text.

This is a very exciting experiment - all money goes to the AUTHORS - if you enjoy these authors excellent works (every one of them is a masterful story teller!) go check out Closed Circle!

originally posted by Chirogeoff

I hadn't read any of these authors but I decided to have a look and have picked up two of Jane Fancur's titles so far. I think it's a great idea. You get instant access to the text and it's affordable. I wonder how they've got around publisher's rights for the books that came out in print. Perhaps the original contracts didn't include electronic versions.

A sharp eyed reader on LibraryThing has spotted an e version of Mistwraith at booksonboard.com…so maybe the publisher is moving on this at last.