The Medium

For as long as I’ve been a reader, the traditional book has been the medium that has drawn me into stories. I love the look of books, the strength of their spine, the boldness of their covers. Run my hand over a book and I smile. The texture of a page between my fingers as I turn it is downright sensuous. There is a distinct aroma to books that compels me, too. Walk into a room full of them and I immediately want nothing more than to sit down, shut up, and just read. I’m in love with physical, traditional books.

Don’t take me for a Luddite, though. A book is technology, just older, that’s all. I like modern technology, too. I own a laptop, and a smart phone, and a TV. Not to mention a car, and all sorts of power tools, and kitchen appliances, and a washer and a dryer, and an electric razor to avoid blood. Still, I successfully resisted an e-reader –“Enough electronics!” I said — until I was told that all eight of my novels would be coming out as e-books. No cover. No pages to turn. No book smell, or feel, or heft. The experience would be digital, and require an e-reader, so I ran out and bought an iPad.

Not because I wanted to read my books that way. I don’t want to read my books any way. It’s an exercise in frustration; I want to edit, but can’t. The reason I bought an iPad is because I realized that e-books are are just another way to experience a story, and that’s okay. After reading a novel on it while camping — no headlamp required! — I am hooked. Now I have TWO ways to read, and I’m loving it.

I may not read my own books on my new e-reader, but I encourage you to. Here is a link to the Open Road Media page where they can be found: http://www.openroadmedia.com/search/?q=Tom%20Birdseye. Enjoy this new medium.