Choosing a Book

I have two bookshelves full of books at home. I have gotten rid of probably the equivalent of a 3rd bookshelf of books and I have a couple hundred books on my nook. When we have friends and family over several are known to peruse the shelves looking for a book to borrow. Most of them comment on how varied the collection is and everyone asks how I pick out the books I have read and placed on those bookshelves.  Each reader picks out books differently and no one way is correct. I choose my books based on cover design and spine font. This seems silly, because as the saying goes, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” Sorry, this girl does…initially. I had a friend follow me through a brick and mortar once and observe me choosing a book (without my knowledge that she was doing this by the way). She finally started laughing and asked me what in the world I was doing. I explained my process. If the book was on the shelf with the spine out I would read the synopsis if I liked the font and color the author used on the spine. If the book was on the shelf with the cover out I would read the synopsis if I liked the composition of the cover. Ok, lame I know, but if I was choosing books this way other people probably are too. I have read a variety of books on topics I never would have read by using this method.

Barnes & Noble nook (ebook reader device)

Barnes & Noble nook (ebook reader device) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have an issue with the nook, and any other eReader for that matter. My friends and family can see the books on my bookshelves and ask me questions about them and take them home to read themselves. I have a couple hundred books on my nook and not one person has asked me what books I have on it. Are we losing something when we use an eReader instead of physical books? I choose my books for my nook based on book covers also but it’s not the same experience. I was in a store tonight with a friend looking at books and we both agreed we liked to physically turn the page as we read however, I do not have enough space in my house to host more books so I have migrated to the eReader. I will admit I’m slower to buy a book on my nook. I could have bought about ten of the books I picked up tonight in two seconds. Don’t get me wrong, I love my nook. I love being able to read in the dark, have a 2nd book to read if I finish the one I’m reading, and being able to prop it up (I could go on forever I think). 

My whole point is choosing a cover for your book is the second most important thing you do as an author. The first is having your manuscript edited. Most readers judge a book by its cover so it needs to be professional and inviting.

How do you choose a book to read and do you prefer an eReader or a physical copy?



Filed under Publishing, Self-Publishing

2 responses to “Choosing a Book

  1. Guilty. I won’t pick a book with a nice cover from just anywhere in the store, but if I have a few books available to read, I’ll always choose the one with the nicest cover first. And if it’s that non-glossy paper and the raggedy-edged pages? *sigh* (I know there’s a word for that, but I haven’t had my coffee yet)

    eReaders… well, I’m getting used to them, and the advantages are fantastic. The portability is the biggest one for me; my purse is heavy enough without books in it! I just got a hand-me-down kobo from my mom a few months ago, so I’m still new to the whole thing. I still (and likely always will) prefer the experience of a “real” book, but you can’t argue with cheap and instantly-available stories, either!

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