I spend a good portion of my work hours creating e-books. Since I have recently become a convert of the technology (I, who consider printed books to be the acme of civilization), it’s a labor of love and of frustration. The love part is easy to explain: I love our books and I love making them accessible in new ways to new readers. The frustration? It took us a long time to get here, as an industry and as a company and, sad to say, it seems to be taking longest among Christian publishers.
While the virtual shelves at Amazon are well stocked with the expected bestsellers and the unexpected public domain and self-published offerings, there are still too many great new books and classics that aren’t making it into this market.
Thus, it was with great comfort that I read about the Vatican’s recent conference on tattoos. (Bear with me, here.) As a woman of a certain uncertain age, I am unabashedly unmarred (well, at least unmarred by tattoos). When my eldest returned from beautiful downtown Sadr City, Iraq, with a shredded leg and a haunted look in his eye, he also sported a sizable tattoo—one that he managed to keep hidden from me for almost a year after his return.
Since he was of age, I was powerless to scold. My last guilty resort—”What if you wanted to become an Orthodox Jew someday?”—was met with a shrug and a, “I like bacon too much. And tattoos. Oh, and that Jesus guy, too.”
And now I find that one of the world’s foremost authorities on tattooing, present at the Vatican’s, er, summit, was himself the Israeli ambassador to the Holy See. So you will perhaps understand how very, very old I felt to realize that:
(1) I am SO never going to be cool again,
(2) even millennia-old traditions seem to have changed when I wasn’t paying attention, and
(3) some 84-year-old Bavarian celibate is vastly more “with it” than I’m ever likely to manage.
(I know, the fact that I use the phrase “with it” does very little to ameliorate the situation).
After a bit of reflection (or perhaps rationalization), I settled back in to coding e-books feeling quite good that, if the People of the Book have only just discovered ink, Franciscan Media stands a fair chance of staying ahead of the crowd in the world of e-books.
If you haven’t ventured into the world of e-books yet, check out our offerings on Kindle. Even the not-so-cool kids are doing it!
If you’re already reading e-books, let us know which of our St. Anthony Messenger Press or Servant Books is your favorite (or which one you’d like to see on Kindle). Add your comment here or on our Facebook page (of course, a Like would also be appreciated) and we’ll add you to a drawing to win a free e-book. (Helpful hint: If you manage to work the words “e-book giveaway” into your post, it will be easier to find your entry.) Submit your comment by Christmas and start the New Year with some great reading!