Work continues to be a bit of a mess... but I can't ignore my list of links about the state of publishing forever, so I'm going to make an attempt at a somewhat substantive weekend links post, all about how the publishing industry is evolving.
I don't know if you've been following the saga of Apple vs. Amazon, by way of the big publishing companies, but I largely agree with this post from Matthew Ingram: the publishers could probably solve their Amazon problem by doing away with DRM.
If you haven't been following it and are curious, The Battle of $9.99, by Andrew Richard Albanese is an excellent overview. (This is link is to an eBook, which will cost you $1.99.)
Right now, Amazon looks dominant in the publishing realm, but Evan Hughes argues in Salon that Amazon is cannibalizing its own success. I don't know that I agree with his entire argument, but I think that he has a point about the fact that the online world hasn't found a satisfactory replacement for browsing in a bookstore- at least not yet.
Kobo seems to be coming on strong as a competitor to Amazon, but they are not the only ones. A company called Zola wants to take them on, too. I'm watching both with interest.
I'm also intrigued by the idea of a Groupon-like business model for eBooks. But I'm not holding my breath for it to happen.
I'm also intrigued by the idea of bringing print on demand to bookstores. I hope it succeeds, actually. Between this and the way that a lot of indies are partnering with Kobo, maybe it is too soon to declare independent bookstores dead.
One reason I care about all of this churn is that I want to see more authors reach more people. Some people are arguing that the new age is just making it harder for an author to get noticed... but Bob Greene's recent CNN piece would seem to provide an object lesson in the fact that it has always been hard for an author to get noticed.
Another reason I care is that I want a nice variety of things to read. Right now, I particularly like to read short eBooks, so I found the opinions of authors C.D. Reimer and Lindsay Buroker on short fiction eBooks interesting. (Quite coincidentally, I stumbled across Buroker's Flash Gold steampunk novella, and quite enjoyed it.)
Magazines used to be another source of solid short reads, and I've been watching The Atlantic's foray into providing eBook content that with interest. Apparently, this is just one of many revenue streams they have been pursuing.
The app companies are also trying to get into the "long reads" (which are really short reads) game. I don't have an iPad, so I can't check this particular app out. Maybe they'll come to Android.
I continue to be fascinated by how we find the things we read. In my case, it is largely by word of mouth (or more properly, word of links...) online, and largely by search on my eReader. I'm not 100% satisfied with either method. In both cases, other methods leak in. I sometimes hear about a book (or follow a link about it) and go find it to read. And I sometimes find interesting things to read from searching on a topic.
What about you? How do you find things to read?