Thursday, February 21, 2008

My Brain Is (Much) Too Small

Just when you think--

You won't believe this but--

Are you sitting down? Because--

A guy walks into a bar--

Honey, we have to talk--

I'm too stunned to come up with a good way to open this entry. I had no idea the market for backwards-thinking people was so huge. I was hoping we'd outsourced all those positions long ago. However--

I just saw a Reuters story where Random House has announced that they will begins selling books online.

That's okay.

By the chapter.

That's stupid.

For $2.99. Each.

That's stupefying.

So, what, a ten chapter book will cost me thirty dollars? But realistically, most books have closer to thirty chapters; so I'm looking at a hundred bucks? For an e-book, something that is already priced on par with a version that I can actually hold in my hand and read without batteries?

Apparently they're saying they're doing this to "gauge interest" in the title. Truly I think they must be developing the market for a mailing list of stupid people addicted to online shopping who think they want to learn to read. Or something equally beyond the capacity of the tiny little nerve endings that meet between my ears. Are you telling me that if don't fall off the turnip truck after winning the lottery and decide NOT to endorse this futuristic, cutting-edge, marketing tool of tomorrow that my message is that I just don't care for the book?

It must be. I can't think of another explanation for publishers who think that adding an inch in height and two dollars to the price of a mass market paperback will sell more books. If charging twenty percent more for an approximation of the same book will lead to an increased readership, I'll... I'll... I'll... If selling e-books by the chapter for three bucks per makes sense to anyone who actually buys books of any sort, I'll... I'll... I'll...

Crap. Got nothing. See, my brain is too small. I need to listen to my wife more.


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