I’m still alive…and feel awful because I have a list of books I need to read and review. May is a crazy month at my new job and I go from there to the gym and am ready to pass out when I finally get home.
Hopefully this summer will be more exciting.
This is what I do what I don’t have words. All I can do is remember how I felt 12 years ago when my home was attacked, and pray for everyone who calls Boston home. And just as the rest of the country was behind us all those years ago, we are all behind you now.
Amazon buys Goodreads (and my unsolicited opinion)
If you don’t follow the news or use Twitter (it was trending earlier), you may not know that Amazon has bought Goodreads, a book community where you can log the books you’ve read, add to a to-read list, write reviews and connect with members and authors. As a book nerd and aspiring writer, I love Goodreads. At first I was like eh, who cares? All start ups get bought up by bigger companies. But then I put my Avid Reader hat on (I have a lot of hats) and saw the downside.
Both GR and Amazon swear that nothing will change, but that’s impossible. Amazon isn’t going to spend a ton of money (the purchase price wasn’t disclosed) and NOT promote themselves. Currently there are buttons on each book page allowing you to purchase the book from not only Amazon but B&N, Indigo and several other online stores. Why would Amazon still give you the immediate option to buy from their competitors? Let’s not forget about the Kindle too, and what fancy integration we’re in store for — very effectively putting them in front of B&N’s Nook and Apple’s iBooks. And what about the brick and mortar stores? What keeps Amazon for giving GR members an even better price?
Worrying about physical stores is a bit hypocritical on my part since I am a big ebook fan. Mainly because I currently am nomadic and just don’t have the room to fill up a book shelf (nor do I constantly want to move them from place to place). I currently only have four books in my possession, and they are four editions of the exact same novel. We also need to be realistic about our local bookstore. It’s 2013. Technology will continue to advance and people will live more and more through their devices (until a devastating incident zaps the power from the world). Who writes letters anymore besides the occasional thank you card for a wedding gift? It was only a decade ago when people were saying they could never replace a hand written letter with an e-mail, because a “real” letter is so much more intimate. I think everyone can agree to that — but it didn’t stop us from migrating to e-mail only communication.
Business wise, it was a great buy for Amazon if they use it correctly. If they reach out to the proper people in the book industry and don’t force Amazon The Company down the throats of those not interested (i.e indie book store fans and dedicated Apple and Nook users).
I don’t see Amazon ever monopolizing the industry, but it may mean some extra work for others. Readers will need to amp up the promotion for sites like IndieBound.com and authors will more than ever need to support local stores for book signings and other events. This merger isn’t the End of Times ordeal I’ve seen some people making it, though no doubt it will hurt some. And honestly, no matter how dedicated to books and the Indie store, if someone offered you a check with a bunch of zeros would you not also be doing the same thing?