Roland Smith knows how to write exciting books that keep kids reading. I was checking out his website to see when the 3rd I,Q book would be out, linked to my review of the first two in the series (In case you’re wondering, the answer is that it will be late 2011). But when I was on his website, I found out that he’s recently published one of his older unpublished novels as an ebook. It’s called Legwork, and you can read my review here.
Now before you stop reading and say “I like “real” books,” or “We don’t even have an ereader,” listen up. Kindle apps are available for the iPad, the ipod Touch (which my daughter uses a lot to read, though I don’t like the small screen), and that opens them up to reading free or inexpensive books that are available. But what I was happy to come across on Roland Smith’s site was this essay talking about why he loves his Kindle.
He likes his ereader so much that he is running a contest where you can win a free signed ereader of your own.
You can read the essay in full HERE, but I’ve excerpted some of this essay (with permission):
by Roland Smith
Years ago I bought the first version of the Kindle. I bought it because I read 2 or 3 books a week and I had gotten tired of lugging around hardback books in my carry-on luggage. I love the feel, smell, and heft of a real book, but the convenience of the Kindle trumped those feelings pretty quickly. Then along came the iTouch, iPhone, iPad, and several other platforms with a free Kindle & Nook Apps. I’m old, and old fashioned, but I had (and have) no problem reading books on these small screens. In fact, I prefer to read this way now. I have over 250 books archived in my Kindle account, which means I’m carrying over 250 books in my pocket. If I’m stuck at an airport, flying, walking, waiting for a pizza to bake, all I have to do it pull a book out of my pocket and lose myself in the story I’m currently reading. These days, if someone offers to loan me a real book I tell them to keep it and I download it into my iPhone. If an editor wants me to read a book I ask them to send it to me as a PDF or a Word document so I can upload the content to my iPhone or iPad.
I guess you could say I’m an eBook convert, which brings me to my new novel Legwork, which is only available as an eBook.
In 1996 I wrote a novel called Amy’s Missing. My idea at the time was to have it published as a paperback original. I was visiting a lot of schools and all of my books were expensive hardbacks. I wanted to give my readers and their parents a chance to walk away with a book that wouldn’t break the bank. Publishers were interested, but none of them were interested enough to publish the book.
(My wife) Marie suggested we convert Amy’s Missing into an eBook. I was happy to do this as long as she did all the work (some things never change). My other condition was I would only put it out again if I still liked the book. I sat down and read it in one sitting and thought: “Wow, this is a great book.” A little arrogant I know, but the story actually stood up to my critical eye and to the test of time. I made a few changes here and there (not many) to update the story, and I decided to change the title to Legwork (when you read it you’ll know why). I should also mention that this new title came from my grandsons JR and Will. I downloaded the book to them. They immediately read it and texted me back: “Call it Legwork, Gramps.” (Thanks JR & Will. Great title).
Please help me spread the word. One of the problems with an eBook is letting people know that the book exists. If you know someone who likes my books, or likes to read, or appreciates a good story, pass this newsletter on to them. Let’s test this wide-open frontier and see how it works.
I will be running a couple of contests this summer to celebrate Legwork beginning July 1st. The prize for the first contest will be…what else? A brand new Kindle. I’ll even sign it. You can participate by visiting my Webpage or joining my FaceBook Fan Page on July 1st.
So I’ve (Jennifer) done my part in spreading the word. I downloaded the book myself and read it and even posted the very first amazon review, and Amanda can’t wait to read it herself.
I love that authors are offering original works as ebooks at low prices. It seems like a win/win to me, and I hope other authors follow suit.
Keep up with us this summer: Check out our current giveaways. Subscribe to our feed. Follow us @5M4B on Twitter or on Facebook.
Jennifer Donovan thinks that people who say they “like the feel of a book” haven’t tried ereaders. She loves the one-handed operation of her Kindle, though she still maintains a small love affair with the look of a beautiful new paper book. She blogs at Snapshot.