entertainment

Confessions of an e-book addict

by NATALIA HAWK

My name is Natalia and I’m an e-book addict – along with what seems to be everybody else in the 21st century. In fact, it’s been confirmed this week that e-books officially outsold hardcovers in 2011 for the first time ever.

This from Reuters:

Ebooks have been growing in popularity for the past several years, even after major publishers were initially slow to embrace digital formats.

According to the report, in the adult fiction category, e-books accounted for 30 percent of total net publisher sales compared to a 13 percent share the year before.

I think the 50 Shades trilogy may have been responsible for 29.9 percent of those sales. I bought them. I’ve bought a whole lot of e-books in the last few months, actually. I’ve become the EXACT person that I never wanted to be.

You see, I was once the very definition of a bookworm. While other little girls were playing with Barbies, I was planning the decor of my future home library. While my brother begged my parents for a puppy, I wanted constant trips to the library. By the age of eight I was banned from reading at the dinner table and while walking to school (too many near-collisions with, you know, cars and things).

I always used to be that person who was very against the whole idea of e-books. “But I love the feel of holding a physical book in my hands!” I’d say. “But how can I lend e-books to my friends!” I’d rant to anyone who would listen. The Kindle and iBooks got pushed to the corner of my brain that is labelled “evil” and had to sit there along with Jafar from Aladdin and Sydney Buses.

And then it all changed.

I fell in love with e-books – and I hardly want to admit it to myself.

It all started when I was umm-ing and ahh-ing about committing to The Hunger Games. I kind of wanted to read it but also didn’t want to spend $15 on the paperback. Then I saw that it was $4 on Kindle for iPhone and all hesitation went out the window. After downloading (and reading) all three, I just wanted to walk around waving my iPhone at everyone and yelling, “YOU DON’T REALISE HOW CHEAP IT ALL IS!”

I stopped having to carry heavy novels around in my handbag all the time. I stopped having to wait for my ordered books to arrive at my door. Instant gratification, and all that. I know that patience is a virtue, but it’s one I don’t possess. I wanted my beautiful works of fiction and I wanted them NOW. E-books filled that void of neediness. Happy days.

I’ll always have a deep love in my heart for the physical book – but it’s the kind of love I also reserve for things like cassette players and floppy disks.

Here’s a gallery of the ebooks currently sitting at the top of the bestsellers iBooks chart:

Are you on the e-book or the real-book side of things?

In case you missed it, Mamamia’s erotic e-book competition is currently running. If you think you could write the next 50 shades, click here for more information.