From My Cold Dead Hands....

| 1/5/2011 9:22:46 AM

Tags: books, ebooks, reading, technology, Cam Mather,

By Cam Mather 

I am not a Luddite. I do not resist new technology. But I will never read books on an e-reader. I will not buy ebooks. I’ll publish them for readers who want them, but I won’t read them.

I bought one of the first Macintosh computers off the line in 1984 when they came out, and I had been using and selling microcomputers for several years before that. In 1987 I started my own company Aztext Electronic Publishing, doing desktop publishing and I have kept the business current through all of the mind bogglingly technological changes that have occurred over the past 24 years. I am able to live off the grid because of the technology in my solar panels and inverters and I have had to stay current and learn and understand developments as they came along.  I use Final Cut Pro to edit educational DVDs and I can text message on my cell phone! But I find the thought of sitting down in my living room (or anywhere else) to read a book on a little hunk of silicon and plastic repugnant, and I’m not going to do it.

We are in the process of providing our books electronically, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to read books that way. I love books. I love the look and feel of books. I love putting a bookmark in the page where I finished off. I don’t want to sit down and have to figure out some software application to get to that page when I start reading that book again in a few days. And most of all, I love the look of a book on my bookshelf. Yes, that’s materialistic and shallow, but I love them none-the-less.


I know I’m going to take abuse about this, but I love bookshelves filled with books. They represent something deep in my psyche. They represent knowledge, and power, and humanity, and tradition. They tie me to the humans that huddled reading by candles 500 years ago. Books represent ideas - ideas that change the world.

2/26/2014 12:54:14 PM

I feel the same! Our living room is centered around our two overflowing bookshelves. They are the first thing you see upon entering my humble abode and it makes me smile every time! I have read a book from an e-book once and it was horrid. Without the smell, feel, and sound of a book, there were no vibes while curled up in my reading nook. I couldn't fall in love with the characters, laugh when the laugh, and cry when misfortune strikes. Call me crazy, but the E is short for evil, not electronic! On a side note, love your aticles Mr. Mather

lee r
1/23/2011 11:12:08 PM

I love book shelves also, and real books. I like to use old postcards that I've received as bookmarks sometimes. I leave them in the book and it's fun to find them later. I would never use an electronic book. yuck.

devora logan
1/19/2011 11:35:36 AM

I agree, however I have opted to live in a 500 sq ft home with no closets,attic, basement nor garage. I have some "death before disposal" books. I LOVE to read and do not have TV. I now use an e-reader to keep my law dictionary and "dummies" books on as well as to borrow from the library without having to make the hr drive to the library and save on gas as well as reduce exhaust emmissions. It is also great when I have to stand in a line, or get caught in construction or other line up situations and I can just pull out my e-reader and indulge.

1/19/2011 9:35:02 AM

All I can say is hallelujah and amen. I drive my techno family nuts. Yes, I own a computer, work on them everyday, text on my phone, email, and even download information and instructions, but I also own many, many books. You have expressed my sentiments exactly. I don't know why anyone would want to sit and scan a reader, when they can sit a read book and enjoy the full experience of reading.

r ma
1/9/2011 8:39:44 PM

Wonderful article! Although I personally love the library, it's kept me from purchasing books that I would rather have not purchased. The lucky thing for me is that my local branch sells books that were donated to the library. (A great way to purchase the books that I did enjoy from the library! Win Win) I don't mind buying books there as they are even lower priced than the second hand stores. As for electronic books, NO THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!! The experience is definately not the same. I hope I made that clear to my family at Christmas time when that idea was put out there for a present for me. Needless to say I do a lot of reading too. Thank you for such an interesting article.

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