Take a look at the picture right there.
Within the last few weeks, I have noticed a growing trend with Starbucks. For quite a long time, Starbucks have had a "pick of the week." It used to just be songs, but for the past year or so, I have noticed that they have begun to use apps and specifically related to this post, they have used books.
Books. Books given away as if they are prizes.
It's hard to explain, but I felt...hopeful after seeing things. I may be the only one, but I thought this to mean so much more to me than what many might think.
Just do one quick Google search and you are sure to find writers, readers, and publishers mourning the loss of the "true" printed word. The published paper book. The kind that you can open the binding and smell that wonderful smell you only find in a book. And I'm no different, I've written those posts too.
But seeing this little card gave me a spark of hope.
You see, this card is just the beginning. Books are easy access now. They are no longer these clunky things we carry around in our purse (like you don't do that). They are on our phones, nooks, kindles, tablets and iPads. They are with you whether you are a business man who secretly enjoys chicklit. Or a stay at home mom who loves erotica. You no longer have to worry what people think about what you read.
And it's more than that...we cry about the loss of our books, and although here is a growing concern about this new technology's impact on libraries and bookstores (which is a valid concern), this technology brings about brand new exciting and interesting ways to reach readers, both new and old. Books are seen fun again. Books are exciting. Books are hip. Books are nifty. Books are finally cool again.
It's always tough to adopt a new technology. I still have the tapes I would play over and over again (Spice Girls anyone?). I still own video cassettes (and even have a VHS player). And of course there will be some who refuse to adopt the idea. And that's okay. Think of how long it took for all of us to accept the idea of the mp3 player (and there are still those who buy the standard CDs).
My advice to writers, publishers, and book lovers everywhere? Don't fight the technology. Sure, it will be a tough road ahead. Any emerging technology faces that, but the reality of it is the sooner we think of this as an opportunity for books rather than against books, the sooner we realize that the endless possibilities that lie before us.