Here’s a little dilemma.
Last week I finished a two-year-long project, producing 17 books about understanding and doing business in 16 countries in Asia.
They were always meant to be e-books: Kindle, iPad, PDF, etc. Especially as I’ve been living in Singapore and New Zealand for the past few years, I really appreciate how e-books make it unnecessary to ship physical bricks of paper around the earth just for me to read the author’s words.
But now as I’m trying to sell my own books, all the smart people say I should set them up as print-on-demand books, to be available in paper for those who prefer to read paper books.
At first I was going to do it, through Amazon’s print-on-demand service. But then I thought:
Do I really want thousands of these pages printed out on paper, to be put into paper boxes, loaded onto trucks, taken to airports, flown around the world, put back on trucks, into smaller trucks, to be delivered to people’s doorstep? I’d feel a little disgusting encouraging that.
So here are a few options I could choose instead:
(1) – No paper books. E-books only. Maybe lose a few sales, but that’s fine.
(2) – Create paper books (on demand) but sell them at a ridiculous price point of $200, letting it be known that for every $200 book sold, $190 of it will go to carbon credits via TerraPass or something, to help pay for the real cost of all that paper and oil.
(3) – Something else? Not sure. Any ideas?
Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to communicate directly instead of via blog comments.