Thursday, January 17, 2008

Handwriting on the wall, or rather, Kindle?

I was listening to On Point with Tom Ashbrook on the way home last night (select stream at the link). The guest was novelist Sue Miller, and they were talking about her new book, The Senator's Wife. They were talking about the emotional accomodations that go into keeping a long-term marriage going, and it was a good show. But I was especially struck by an aside in what one caller said, as it seemed to have a lot to say about the future of "hard copy" books.

"I opened a bookstore at the same time The Good Mother came out," the caller said. "You were the first author to read in our store, and I was always grateful." He went on to say he enjoyed her work and had read all her books, except the most recent. "I'm not buying any books right now, because I'm in a queue at Amazon, waiting to buy a Kindle."

If (former?) booksellers have stopped buying books printed on paper, can the end of the hard copy book be far behind?

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