By now you're probably very familiar with the whole AmazonFail deal that has been going on. Today, Scalzi made a shout-out for author support. I think that was a fine thing to do.
Most of the authors involved don't care so much about ebook pricing either way. They just want people to read their works. In fact, the majority of writers I know care about money only in so much as it allows them to keep writing books. Money is important because without it, we'd all have to be working in a cubicle somewhere rather than creating the art that we love.
Some will argue that $9.99 is too low for an ebook, others that it's too high. I'm not really on either side, to be honest. I see it both ways. But I do agree that what Amazon did in pulling physical books was a petulant, annoying move that harms a bunch of people who had nothing to do with the negotiations. Scalzi, in his nefarious evil wisdom, calls for everyone to show support to the authors and get their books someplace other than Amazon.
This strikes me as particularly important for authors who released books either last week or this week. For those of us who had book launches before the holidays, most of you who want our books already have them. But think of Steven Erikson, who had a new book come out a couple of weeks ago. Or heck, Ben Bova, Charlie Stross, and L. E. Modesitt Jr. had books come out today. First week sales, as everyone knows, are very important for a book's future. What Amazon did to me was annoying; what it did to these folks was downright nasty.
On an unrelated note, I've been very amused by that picture of Rand holding up an iPad that was over at Engadget.  Someone on my Facebook page made a great suggestion that Photoshopping the cover of THE DRAGON REBORN to have an iPad would be an awesome idea, what with the design of the book. That made me laugh out loud to consider.
Therefore, I'm issuing a Photoshop challenge (with prizes) to all of you readers out there. Photoshop a picture of a figure from the Wheel of Time books (it doesn't matter who, or whether you use official art or fan art) to include iPads, Kindles, Nooks, Sony Readers, or whatever ebook reader you prefer. Then send it to me or post it to my forums.
Be creative. Recreate the Last Battle with ebooks. Have Kindles being Balefired. Whatever you want. Keep it clean, make us laugh, and have fun.
I'm going to give you until Friday at noon my time. My partners in crime (probably Peter and whomever I recruit—maybe Maria and Dragonmount Jason) and I will pick our three favorites. If you win, I will walk to my local bookstore (okay, I'll probably give Mysterious Galaxy or Sam Weller's a call) and I will BUY YOU A COPY of a recent Tor release. I'll also send you a signed hardcover of one of my books.
FIRST PLACE: A hardcover of DUST OF DREAMS by Steven Erikson or ABLE ONE by Ben Bova.
SECOND PLACE: A paperback of IMAGER by L. E. Modesitt Jr., THE REVOLUTION BUSINESS by Charlie Stross, or STEAL ACROSS THE SKY by Nancy Kress which I will buy for you.
THIRD PLACE: Same as second place.
Let the Photoshoppery begin!
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