Society of the Old West

From early westward expansion through the early 20th Century.

Sorry I haven't been around--busy with that trying to earn a living thing. Then I couldn't remember my user name to log back into Ning... Senior moments. I seem to have them more than usual these days.

Meantime I need some feedback...

I published my last Luke and Jenny book back in 2010, and decided to leave it as a trilogy. I covered a good bit of historical material--the Earps and the O.K. Corral, Billy the Kid, and Frank and Jesse James. For those who are unfamiliar, the books are written for young readers, ages 8 through 12. The two lead characters, two modern day kids, Luke and Jenny, are on their summer vacation, visiting historical sites with their mother. While there they meet ghosts who take them back into time, and they learn the real history in an entertaining way. The books are available in both print and on Amazon Kindle.

While the history obviously has not changed, the technology the two kids are using in the modern day story is now out of date, so it's time to do a minor update, which I've already done on the Kindle editions. What is perplexing me is what to do with the print editions. It would be easy for me to update them, as the changes would be minor, but my publisher wants to do a big toodoo and treat them like brand new books. Great idea, but what she has in mind would cost me a small fortune.

So, do I let the print editions simply go out of print, and leave the books on Amazon Kindle, while perhaps coming out with a Nook edition? Or should I do updated print editions?  Now that I have my own publishing company I can publish the print edition myself, with little fanfare, but I still have some out-of-pocket expenses.

It's an interesting time to be in the book business. While there will always be a need for print books, more and more people are buying Kindles and other ereaders. (I have a Kindle myself.)  Any thoughts?

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Comment by Mel Graf on June 11, 2013 at 9:51am

Gayle,

Leave the print editions alone and don't let them go out of print.  Books are not like computers where the minute after you buy one it becomes "obsolete."  Technology changes so fast now and there's no reason to update good books to try to keep up with it.  I'm personally glad that the Hardy Boys book, "The Tower Treasure," remains as it was when I read it as a kid.  Unless there are newer titles no book from the past should be "updated" so the characters can have smart phones. 

As an aside, I keep up with children's books and many new titles about passenger trains set in current times still show old E8 and steam locomotives being used.  Kids of today have never seen such things but they still make for beautiful and romantic illustrations even if not truly reflecting the times.  Kids and adults alike still need beauty and romance and that's the real point in my opinion.

-Mel

Comment by dirtrider on June 9, 2013 at 8:49pm

yup

Comment by dirtrider on June 9, 2013 at 7:07pm

There ya go, Gus.......

howinhell ya gonna read yer kindle when all there is to read by  is firelight or oil lamp?  After a day of work (check yer dikshunery fer wut thet is) a good book is good company.  Without power, ya got a tray to serve a small treat on with them tablet things.

Comment by Carbine on June 7, 2013 at 9:26pm

Dirt, Morg & Dan- You boys all bring up good points, and all valid too. Please excuse me as I wipe my weeping eyes as Dan done choked me up ..... Don't know about y'all, but I like to read in bed before I sleep. At times I've had books fall in my face as I doze off. Can you imagine the damage a Kindle would do !

Gayle, as fast as technology is moving if you updated your print editions they would be out dated, again, in less than 5 years. So the point is - modern technology has taken over. How often would you be willing to go to the expense of updating your print versions? Kids are into Kindles and all other kind of electronics now. Paper is too slow and dull for them.

No doubt there is a market for parents and grandparents to read paper books to young ones. Fact is; I still wish you would come out with a Luke and Jenny book of Old West short stories dealing with the Lost Dutchman, Apache Pass, Olive Oatman, John Wesley Powell and other people and events. Paper version would be real nice, and Kindle would do for the updates.  

Comment by dirtrider on June 7, 2013 at 6:43am

I do not own a kindle. Have no intention of doing so. It would seem to be a part of our gadget loving society. Cannot imagine curling up by the fire with another gadget. Books have a warmth and a personal feeling to them.  I envy a large library, such as Cowboy Dan's and others that I have known.  Mine is only a couple hundred.  They take up space, gather dust, and are inconvienent, compared to  one little box with a window.  I love every one of them.  Some things cannot be replaced by new gadgets or modern gizmos.  They are company in the evening or morning.  Books are special.

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