Friday, September 23, 2011

I Told You So

My first book, Sea Of Hope, was published in 2001 by Awe-Struck EBooks. It was originally published only in digital format. However, for those who wanted a physical "book" it could be purchased as a file on a 3 1/2 inch diskette. (Remember those?)

It was very difficult being an e-published author at first. While I believed in the viability of ebooks from the first time I held a Rocket eReader in my hands, most of the world had no idea what I was talking about. Worst of all, many traditionally published authors denigrated those of us who had decided to try our luck with ebooks. That stung a bit, but I knew I was right and that ebooks would catch on.

Nevertheless, I spent several years attempting to educate people on the wonders of ebooks. For the most part, it was a wasted endeavor.

Then came the Kindle. It was the right gadget at the right time with the right price. Suddenly, reading on an electronic device was the height of fashion. Ebooks took off and soon their sales surpassed those of paper books.

Now traditionally published authors, who were unwilling to give any credence to ebooks at first, have mined their backlists and republished their books on their own, making tidy profits in digital sales.

I hold no grudges. I was aware from the first that the traditionally published were fearful of the new media and waiting to see what would happen. In truth, ebooks turned the publishing world upside down. To those traditionally published authors who are now enjoying success in digital publishing, I offer my congratulations. I am glad that ebooks have become accepted as I knew they would.

I am happy writing my stories and being a published author. That's all I wanted in the first place.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Simply Amazing

Dad bought a Mac Mini this week. This amazing computer is very, very small--but very, very powerful. Dad had been frustrated by his old WebTV. Microsoft stopped supporting it and the browser cannot display such sites as Facebook or YouTube. Nevertheless, it had been easy for Dad to receive and send email with the WebTV, so he was reluctant to change.

I thought the Mac Mini could nearly duplicate the experience of Dad's WebTV because he could use his television as the monitor. With a wireless keyboard and trackpad, I had hoped it wouldn't be too difficult. It was a breeze to set up.

However, there's a huge learning curve involved. Dad now has a very powerful machine. I bought him a book on the Lion operating system, which is the latest Apple system. I went through the steps of how to turn the machine off and on, find his email, and log on to Facebook.

It's going to take a while before he is proficient, but it is wonderful that he is willing to take this on at his age. Many elderly people refuse to use computers and they miss a lot.

Dad signed up for Facebook when I told him he had to do it to keep in touch with his grandchildren. He enjoys the gossip. He also enjoys reading the New York Times online. He gets a big thrill out of sending pertinent articles to everyone, a task that had become impossible with his old WebTV.

Watch out world. Dad will soon be cluttering up your inbox with news he believes you should read. :^)

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Too Much Water

Hurricane Irene is gone, but she left a lot of misery in her wake. For the first time in the thirty-two years we've live here, the reservoir near our house overflowed at the same time the tide rose. This created a huge flood.

There have been several storms where the level of the river was high. I have a blog post with photos from several years ago here. However, Hurricane Irene dumped more water on us than any other storm.

There is a bridge somewhere underneath all that water. Fortunately, the dam did not break--though we were worried that it would. Other dams in our state did not hold.

Our house was safe up on the hill. Our neighbor's house, to the left of the road in the photo, was flooded and knocked off its foundation by a chunk of the bridge that broke away. That house has now been condemned. Another neighbor had a tree fall on their house. Many of our neighbors have lived for a week without electricity.

Other communities in our state had far more devastation from this one storm and my heart goes out to all of those who have lost so much.